EBAA Wants Expansion of U.S. Pre-clearance at Shannon

 - March 9, 2010, 10:38 AM

The European Business Aviation Association (EBAA) has called on the U.S. government to extend the pre-clearance option now in effect at Ireland’s Shannon International Airport to business aircraft operated under commercial rules. Pre-clearance of business aircraft for U.S. customs and immigration checks began at Shannon early last week, but contrary to earlier expectations it is restricted to Part 91 operators, and they can fly only to a restricted number of U.S. airports. While the service is available to Part 91 operators of all nationalities, EBAA says that the current restriction on pre-clearance still eliminates 70 percent of European business aircraft. “Rapid and unhindered access between the U.S. and Europe is a vital and integral part of the service provided by business aviation,” said EBAA president Brian Humphries. “The EBAA warmly welcomes the excellent work done by members of this sector working closely with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection to create a ‘U.S. border’ at Shannon Airport. However, because of the indivisible nature of commercial and non-commercial business aviation it is essential that this new service is provided to both elements of this non-airline sector,” meaning private and charter operators alike.