August 4th – afternoon
Another excellent experience we got on our exploration tour in Georgia was the contact with the Georgian Civil Aviation Agency.
I contacted them some weeks ago via internet and got a prompt response from Leval Karanadze, a young deputy director.
I addressed our plan to setup a private pilot rally to Georgia and addressed that we are confronting some practical issues in preparation of this 2016 event.
Levan setup a meeting at his office nearby the airport and involved all the concerned persons:
- Tamara Archuadze, Deputy director MCMC for Georgia
- Aleksandre Gachechiladze, head of air transportation department
The meeting was also attended by Igor Aptsiauri, first deputy director.
With all these persons involved, we had a very fruitful discussion on the topics we raised:
- there’s no AVGAS in Georgia: Indeed, there’s Mogas. The director of Service air (Vanilla Sky) earlier mentioned he could ensure to have some barrels with Avgas on his airfield. The GCAA officials were committed to find a structural solution
- no VFR maps available: the meeting discussed that with the help of VFR pilots in Georgia we have been flying with, some VFR waypoints can be defined.
- Flying with EASA / JAR or FAA pilot’s license. The issue will be analyzed, but a temporary authorization could eventually prove to be possible
- aircraft registration: we learned that having civil aircraft registration numbers for the planes who are coming from Europe and Turkey are recommended.
- Entrance point for customs clearing will be BATUMI airport
- Pilots must have experience in mountain flying if they like to fly to the Mestia airfield
Several of the government officials we met seemed to know Luxembourg quite well and visited our country multiple times. I learned that Levan Karadnadze and myself got some common acquitances, being Hendrik Dermont of Eurocontrol, with whom I attended high school in my youth. It is a small world !
The 4 GCAA officials were very nice and good people to talk with. They positioned themselves as persons trying to help us as much as possible in the preparation of our 2016 private pilot rally. Preparing a rally can only work out well if you have reliable contacts with the local authorities.