Touching Bases: Carlsbad adds VIP customs service

 - July 9, 2008, 7:02 AM

Since January, pilots flying to airports in Southern California have been able to obtain overflight permits and fly directly to destinations like McClellan-Palomar Airport in Carlsbad, instead of making an expensive stop at a border airport-of-entry then flying to the destination. To help make the overflight and destination customs procedures easier, San Diego County’s airports division and McClellan FBOs created a VIP phone line to help pilots with information on the procedures and to connect pilots to the FBOs or the customs office. “The process is really easy, and with users now getting walked through the process it’s even easier,” said Ginna Reyes, who handles special projects for the county. Users of this service have to pay extra fees for the customs officers to provide services away from an airport-of-entry, and these range from $50 to $500 during normal business hours. The VIP phone number is (877) 848-7766.