Under the “Know Before You Go initiative,” FBOs may voluntarily list their fees and prices for turbine and piston aircraft in AOPA’s Airport Directory.
NAAA recently joined the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) and many other state/regional agricultural aviation associations and national general aviation associations in calling for fixed-base operator (FBO) fee transparency at the nation’s public-use airports.
One program in particular, known as “Know Before You Go,” encourages FBOs to voluntarily place their prices and ramp fees online so all pilots can make informed decisions in their preflight planning. Ramp fees include infrastructure fees, security fees, tie-down fees, handling fees, parking fees, overnight fees, etc. that are charged to both piston and turbine aircraft operators.
Letting pilots of piston and turbine aircraft know what the fees are at a particular airport before they arrive enables pilots to make an informed decision on the best place to land and creates more competition among FBOs. At this point, about 25% of the 3,000 FBO locations are participating in this transparency initiative, mostly small and independent FBOs. This coalition effort, which includes the support of multiple aviation groups, seeks to increase the compliance rate, especially with the large chain FBOs.
With respect to airport ramp transparency, the “Know Before You Go” campaign encourages the use of standardized General Aviation parking labels, where applicable, on FAA-required airport diagrams. This, too, will help pilots in their preflight planning and effectively address the use of multiple terms currently being used to describe the same parking area.
Today, about 700 airports are required to have an airport diagram, and the FAA is moving to increase that number to over 3,000. A recent AOPA survey found nearly 30 different labels for the same type of GA parking ramp—in Southern California alone. On a national scale that number multiplies, hence this effort to standardize. Standardized General Aviation parking labels for airport diagrams, where applicable, include GA Transient Ramp, GA Tenant Ramp, FBO Ramp and CBP Ramp.
Under the “Know Before You Go initiative,” FBOs can voluntarily use their own website, an airport website or the AOPA Airport Directory to list fees and prices for turbine and piston aircraft. AOPA’s airport database is a great tool for ag pilots migrating to help operators in need of ag pilots in other parts of the country as they relocate their aircraft.