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New AOPA/COPA border crossing guide to debut June 2 at AOPA Fly-InNew AOPA/COPA border crossing guide to debut June 2 at AOPA Fly-In

A new 141-page guide for pilots anticipating a flight across the U.S./Canadian border will debut at the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association Fly-In, June 2, at AOPA's home airport of Frederick, Maryland.

The comprehensive new publication, titled AOPA/COPA Guide to Cross-Border Operations, was written jointly by AOPA and the Canadian Owners and Pilots Association. It includes advice and resources for pilots of either country on cross-border flight procedures, regulations, Customs, and much more.

"Flying between Canada and the United States is probably the easiest international flight a recreational pilot can make," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "The similar procedures, language, and love of general aviation make most crossings trouble-free—provided the pilot plans ahead."

Added COPA President Kevin Psutka, "General aviation aircraft provide a unique freedom to explore that most other forms of transport cannot provide. This new guide will help minimize concerns and encourage members to take advantage of the great tourism and travel opportunities on both sides of our common border."

The new publication is based on AOPA's now out-of-print Canada booklet, which addressed only planning for U.S. pilots headed north. Additional material from COPA experts in the new publication expands information available for flights in either direction.

Topics covered in the new guide include:

  • Preflight planning and preparation;
  • Flight plan requirements, Customs procedures, ATC fees (Canada);
  • Travelers' information, including advice on climate, currency, languages, banking, credit cards, pets, and more;
  • Sources for charts, tourism information, and contact information for local and regional FAA and Transport Canada offices;
  • Special flight considerations in Canada, including requirements for survival equipment and suggested routes;
  • A full explanation of both U.S. and Canadian expedited Customs clearing procedures, with contact numbers;
  • U.S. and Canadian flight plan forms, with instructions for proper completion, and
  • Information on authorizations required for experimental amateur-built aircraft.

All-new material includes an expanded list of chart dealers on both sides of the border, as well as a review of U.S. flight rules for Canadian pilots and a convenient one-page tear-out checklist to help ensure that no cross-border planning item has been overlooked.

The new publication will be available without cost in the members-only section of Web sites for both AOPA and COPA, and in printed form from either association for a small shipping and handling fee.

AOPA and COPA are respectively the world's largest and second-largest general aviation membership associations, with a combined membership of nearly 400,000 members. Both are dedicated to keeping general aviation flying safe, fun, and affordable.

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