dfwjim1
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New airline service - test flights?

Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:23 pm

I was just reading about BA's new service between LGW and FLL that is scheduled to begin on July 6th and a thought came to mind...when airlines start passenger service to an airport that they have not served in the past are a couple of "test" flights flown before the actual date to get bugs worked out and to get an idea of how things will run at the new airport?
 
mmo
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Re: New airline service - test flights?

Tue Apr 11, 2017 5:13 pm

Simple answer is no. Unless the airport is a "special" airport, then the carrier is able to start when they want assuming they have, if required, the applicable route authority and slots. After all, a runway is a runway. The station manager will do the hiring of staff for the station and Flight Ops might do some visits if there is any issues that might be of concern. But, in this case MIA is just down the road, I would be willing to bet FLL is an alternate, so there is not much to scope out.

It is extremely expensive to do test flights and in reality not worth the money.
If we weren't all crazy we'd all go insane!
 
BravoOne
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Re: New airline service - test flights?

Tue Apr 11, 2017 7:11 pm

The only thing I have seen like this would a "validation flight" for a new type equipment that was going to be used on an ETOPS route. This would be done with the FAA observing the flight crew, dispatch and maintenance functionality.
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: New airline service - test flights?

Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:25 am

At "special" airports a Captain might arrange for a jumpseat flight in and out with another airline in order to observe the operation, but this is typically not necessary.

Otherwise as mmo says. A runway is a runway.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
Redbellyguppy
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Re: New airline service - test flights?

Wed Apr 12, 2017 5:01 am

It's an ILS with a piece of concrete at the end of it.
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: New airline service - test flights?

Wed Apr 12, 2017 5:39 am

Redbellyguppy wrote:
It's an ILS with a piece of concrete at the end of it.


Yes and no. An ILS is an ILS, but many ports have quirks and in some cases those quirks need to be identified as specific risks. For example: Tel Aviv - multiple airspace and security considerations. Hong Kong - airspace considerations, high terrain and windshear. Sydney, SFO and others - closely spaced parallel approaches. Manila - general congestion. Innsbruck - high terrain. Cairns - high terrain. Male - no taxiways and restrictions on arrivals and departures within the same time window.

Most of the time, a self briefing from company prepared airport notes is more than enough. In extreme cases sim training may be needed for the crew or at least the commander.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
BravoOne
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Re: New airline service - test flights?

Wed Apr 12, 2017 9:51 am

The FAA designates various levels of "Special Airports" and the need for either viewing a video, using a sim session with the modeled airport in question, or lastly having the first entry for a Captain being done with a line check airman in a control seat. The airport that comes to mind is the old VHHH IGS approach. Other than that, the earlier posts are pretty much right on the mark.
 
MPadhi
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Re: New airline service - test flights?

Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:58 pm

Starlionblue wrote:
Redbellyguppy wrote:
It's an ILS with a piece of concrete at the end of it.


Tel Aviv - multiple airspace and security considerations.


What sort of changes are there for normal civilian operations because of this?
 
BravoOne
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Re: New airline service - test flights?

Thu Apr 13, 2017 11:25 pm

I doubt that you would see that discussed on this or any aviation forum, with any detail. Before you ask, I don't know.
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: New airline service - test flights?

Mon Apr 17, 2017 12:33 am

MPadhi wrote:
Starlionblue wrote:
Redbellyguppy wrote:
It's an ILS with a piece of concrete at the end of it.


Tel Aviv - multiple airspace and security considerations.


What sort of changes are there for normal civilian operations because of this?


Mostly having to do with restricted airspace and such. That's all in the AIP.

The rest has do with crew, passenger and aircraft handling on the ground. As BravoOne says, this is not information readily available to the public.

Note that Tel Aviv is hardly unique in this. Go to a different country and you'll see security procedures, customs clearance and immigration handled slightly differently. Some are really straightforward and some are convoluted.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo

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