Still Considering Travel to the Summer Olympics/Rio2016? It’s Not Too Late.
Editor’s Note: In Part 2 of our series on traveling to the Olympics, we again talked to Cynthia C. E. Oliveira, Operations Director, and Ana Paula Martin, International Operations Manager from Lider Aviation, Brazil’s premier FBO network, about what can be done for any last-minute trips to the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.
The 2016 Summer Olympic Games—more commonly known as Rio2016—are roughly two weeks away. Whether you’re putting the finishing touches on your trip to Brazil, or still have owners or passengers deciding if they want to go, this post is for you. And, if a trip to South America isn’t in your future, you might still consider reading on…the thoughts below just might aid any last-minute trip planning.
Before reading on, please take a moment and read our first post about traveling to Rio for the Olympics. The tips for smooth operations offered in the February post are the perfect complement to the points below.
Get Hotels Now—Seriously, stop reading and get your hotel reservations. We’ll wait. This is critical if your passengers are expecting to stay in the city of Rio de Janeiro and enjoy American-style accommodations. Rooms of this type are few, but they are available if you’re willing to hunt or make a call to get help (more on that below). Did you find a hotel? Okay, good.
Make Ground Handling Reservations—Like hotel rooms, ground handling comes down to supply and demand. What’s more, all the rest of your services (below) will rotate around arrival and departure dates, fuel, parking, catering, extra security, ground transportation, customs… and the list goes on. Because ground handling touches so many aspects of your trip, you need to have it secured ASAP. And, expect the pricing to rise with demand, equaling the charges seen during the 2014 World Cup.
Changes in Airspace—It’s not enough to simply understand the new airspace regulations and associated updates, which can be found here. In and around the period between August 5 (opening ceremonies) and August 21 (closing ceremonies) expect high levels of both general and commercial aviation traffic. Have a Plan B (keeping the new regulations in mind) and be as comfortable using it as the plan you filed. While it may not look as good on paper, your alternate may be a better choice once reality takes hold. What’s more, be sure to have a good sense of the exclusion zones (red/yellow) and how they’ll impact your flight planning and operations.
Permits—Now that ground handling has been secured, and you know how you’re flying into and out of Rio, it makes sense to apply for your permits. Permits that normally take up to two hours for review and (hopefully) approval could now take up to one day. And, if you’re flying to multiple locations, allow up to 72 hours to hear back. Slots for the Summer Olympics were released at the end of June 2016. They go hand-in-hand with permitting and shouldn’t be overlooked.
Parking—Even though it’s part of your ground reservations, parking is worth some extra mention. For starters, it’s is going to be especially tricky because of both peak arrival and departure times (opening and closing ceremonies), movement around the five different soccer venues, and overall comings and goings of aircraft that won’t be in Rio for the entire duration of the games. In the case of Lider, which controls 70 percent of the parking in Rio, parking will include a number of exits/entries to allow them to receive nine arriving aircraft while also handling seven departing. The more detail you can provide when parking (including schedules, if it’s okay to tow your airplane, if you’ll want access when parked, etc.), the better. And, don’t hesitate to ask where your ground handler plans to park your airplane and how they might handle a changes in case your passengers want to leave early or stay late.
Cynthia and Ana provided two other pieces of advice for those planning a trip to the Olympics:
Always Ask—Business aviation is a business of last-minute changes. That not only means managing trips when they pop-up, that also means filling last-minute cancellations as well. It’s always worth the effort to ask—you never know when a spot will open up.
Good Help Will Pay For Itself.—Providers like Jeppesen’s International Trip Planning Service (ITPS), Lider and others have the relationships that, at this point in our trip planning to Rio 2016, are worth far more than you’d pay to use them. Whether you’re a do-it-yourselfer when it comes to trip planning, or you work with a stellar team, now’s the time to get help. You’ll be glad you did.
Jeppesen’ s International Trip Planning Service (ITPS) team is well versed in last-minute trip planning as well as navigating the obstacles that can make managing the travel logistics for world-class events like the Olympics seem like, well, like you’re competing in a decathlon. For years, we’ve helped thousands of our clients successfully navigate hundreds of world-class events with industry leading service and support throughout the trip. Learn more by clicking here or contacting your trusted Customer Service representative directly. Or, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (800) 353-2108.