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Cessna as an Uber Taxi ?

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Cessna as an Uber Taxi ?

Old 30th Mar 2015, 01:45
  #21 (permalink)  
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And there I was thinking I could just bung someone a crafty C note for a belly full of Avgas and then a quick hop over the desert in time for dessert in Vegas on a Friday evening, hopefully dodging the need for any IFR flying.

We certainly live in a world of lawyers and regulations, for all the safety I'm sure we have gained I can't help but feel we have lost something as well.

Oh well, back to strip searches and angry grannies handing out peanuts.
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Old 30th Mar 2015, 01:45
  #22 (permalink)  
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Luckily in The Netherlands such lawsuits don't have any chance of success. That's one thing our government does right compared with all the other nonsense regulations in our little country. Dutch law is mostly "common sense", you won't get charged more than 50 euro's if they catch you downloading a movie for example, instead of 5 million dollars...

[little bit offtopic]
Technically, downloading is only made illegal very recently because of European pressure, but the government already said they won't do anything to stop it, and they won't actively search for violators, so downloading is still OK here Just like most drugs: not legal, but OK to own and use if you want. They even have government approved harddrugs testing facilities at big parties, just so you can be sure it's doesn't contain rat poison.
[/end offtopic]

In your example: if you get on a flight and need to do a go around and she gets traumatized because of that, that's her problem, not yours. You didn't force her to get on the aircraft and you piloted the aircraft as good as you could. If you think a go around was necessary then you did everything OK. End of story.
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Old 30th Mar 2015, 03:00
  #23 (permalink)  
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And there I was thinking I could just bung someone a crafty C note for a belly full of Avgas
It would have to be an awfully small plane! In my plane (TR182) a round trip PHX-LAS would be around $300-400 in direct operating costs. A smaller plane would be cheaper per hour but would take longer, so not much difference. And that assumes I'm essentially doing it out of the goodness of my heart or to build hours. If I want some compensation for my time and to recover some of the overhead costs of the aircraft, it would be double that.

That said, if you find someone who'll do it quietly for the cost of fuel, good luck to both of you. Just don't get caught, and don't tell a soul what you're up to.
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Old 30th Mar 2015, 04:44
  #24 (permalink)  
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Last edited by Radix; 18th Mar 2016 at 02:33.
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 01:35
  #25 (permalink)  
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What is a "CF license"?
I'm not aware of anything in the FAA certification hierarchy between Private and Commercial.

The FAA has even held that a private pilot flying for "free" is being compensated with hours logged toward a higher rating.
It has but, as far as I'm aware, not in the context of an otherwise lawful cost-sharing arrangement between individuals. I am, of course, open to correction.
(I agree the FAA defines compensation extremely broadly.)

The scenario you describe in post #21 might fall foul of the FAA's definition of compensation because a business relationship existed between the pilot and the passenger. ie Compensation in the form of goodwill, regardless of whether the customer promised future business.

And there I was thinking I could just bung someone a crafty C note
A return flight from Phoenix to Las Vegas with costs shared is likely to cost you more than one C note, whether the arrangement is 'crafty' or entirely legal.
We certainly live in a world of lawyers and regulations, for all the safety I'm sure we have gained I can't help but feel we have lost something as well.
I agree.
However, in many contexts, including internet forums, 'barrack-room lawyers' create more problems. (A British expression; I don't know the American equivalent.)

Where has Foxmoth advocated finding illegal means?
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 01:51
  #26 (permalink)  
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NO, simply put you cannot.

An uber like system was already NIXED by the FAA.

FLYING costs LOTS of money. Do you really want your own plane? Fine, FAR PART 135 Charter company.

Picks you up, flys you to Las Vegas and is paid to wait for you, you pay for hotel room and meals for the pilot too.

OR the pilot flys right back to Phoenix and they charge you for getting the plane home.

BUY a ticket on American, first class and enjoy it.
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 02:48
  #27 (permalink)  
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The original question was:

What would be the feasibility (and legality) of me finding a local pilot who would ferry me out and back for a fee
When I read "local pilot" I infer a distinction away from a "charter or commercial air service" (maybe it's just me).

When I read:

Now I'm a regular visitor to Vegas (45 mins by 737) and I'm getting to the point where I can't take commercial aviation any more.
I infer this is intended to be a regular/repeated event.

If a "citizen" happened to walk onto the ramp at Phoenix, and identify a pilot who was heading to Vegas, and ask if they could go along, and pay part fuel, I imagine that the FAA could see it in their heart to find that to be okay. But, I imagine, that if this happened with regularity, the FAA would take much more interest, and look hard to see if this was edging into a "chisel charter".

If in the mean time, the "event" happened, I would expect a rapid unraveling, of the friendly relationship with the "local pilot" and once the insurance company got a whiff of the relationship, things would turn bad all the way around. Was it worth it? Nope! I would not get involved.

come on guys, yes let the OP know the problems, but be positive about it and suggest ways he might be able to do this
Yes, in spirit. But, practically, to fulfill the original criteria, there are only two sustainable ways: The OP hires a commercial charter service, which means no, to the proposed conditions in the question, or the OP takes up flying, for personal transport.

So, of course, we quite encourage people taking up aviation - welcome! But understand that GA aviation as a method of personal scheduled air service faces challenges. I agree that the Phoenix - Vegas runs is one of the happily less challenging in terms of weather, though the terrain is rather intimidating for forced landing considerations. When "get here to there" enthusiast asks me about flying as a way to fulfill their travel needs, I present cautions about expectations. The expectation of getting there, is the get home itis poison.

So, from a practical standpoint, "could I?" inquiry here from a presumed non pilot to "regular self fly Phoenix to Vegas pilot" is probably not within the timeframe expectations of the OP. Not "on base".


If I'm way off base here no problem, but I have always wanted to ask.
Has been asked an answered objectively. It was not a generally positive answer, which in my opinion, accurately reflects the possibilities for the prescribed conditions. I'm pretty positive about promoting GA, but not when I feel that in truth, it won't work. GA is not the solution for all transportation needs. Yes, we should promote GA, but an inaccurate presentation helps no one....
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 03:10
  #28 (permalink)  
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There is a way to be legal (in my opinion)

Go the local flight school, take a few lessons, and make friends with some of the pilots who fly there. You may find someone heading off to Vegas for a weekend with a spare seat every now and then. They won’t advertise it. If they are like me you will need to pass a passenger aptitude test. Show an interest in small planes, when I joke about crashing or getting lost, try and look nonchalant, nervous passengers are a distraction and distractions are bad news for a low time pilot. They might let you chip in for fuel/rental. But if it was me, it would be made very clear to you and I cannot guarantee to get you anywhere at any time, that includes ending up in the middle of no-where that is neither Vegas nor Phoenix. Flying is a hobby I pay for, I am happy if passengers buy me some lunch and pay for landing fees at my destination. Also you don’t know really know how good a pilot they are, you might need those lessons.

Also a bunch of scenarios you would need to happy with.

You get a call at 1pm Friday, “had a look at the weather, storm due in this evening going to take the afternoon off work and fly to Vegas early.”

Get the airport Friday night, the previous renter left the master on and the battery is flat, “will be too late to leave tonight come back in the morning.”

Decided to have a drink after work, “we will go tomorrow”

On the way to Vegas engine makes a strange noise, “might make a precautionary landing in this little nowhere dessert town here.” Mechanic has to drive from Phoenix, “I guess we will be staying here tonight.” In the end turns out to be nothing wrong with the engine.

10 am Sunday morning in Vegas just starting on the buffet breakfast, another call “wind due to pick up this afternoon in Phoenix, not due until late afternoon but going to leave now just in case.”

That’s private flying. If where and when are important I fly commercial.
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 12:19
  #29 (permalink)  
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Step Turn

Not just you. It was clear what the OP was asking - although the thread meandered off into discussions about commercial charter flights (and the legislation relating to them) despite the efforts of some posters to bring it back to the question asked.
I agree that in most instances the OP's question has been "answered objectively", but it does not follow that the answers, however objectively given, are necessarily correct.
I agree that "GA is not the solution for all transportation needs." There's wisdom (and often experience) in the old adage 'Time to spare, go by air.'
Re "chisel charter": If you mean the same pilot regularly taking a succession of people who 'happened to walk onto the ramp' then that might well arouse suspicion and lead to further investigation. However, I don't know of any legal obstacle to a private pilot regularly cost-sharing with the same passenger or passengers, even regularly to the same destination.
Re promoting GA: I wouldn't criticise anyone who hasn't already been in a light aircraft flown by a private pilot for deciding that it's far too risky after reading this thread.
an inaccurate presentation helps no one....
Nor do inaccurate assertions - some of which have been pointed out by various posters.

I thought Foxmoth's positive approach was sensible. When I was a barrister, I was often required to advise whether something which appeared to be prohibited could be achieved legally.
On some occasions, it could be achieved with just a few amendments to the client's proposed plan
On others, I advised that it could not. I remember one instance very well because the client queried my advice, pointing out that another owner-pilot had been very openly doing what he wished to do for several years (True) and saying that it was inconceivable that the CAA was not aware. (I shared his view.) My answer was still no.

A general comment about cost-sharing:

It may be uncommon in North America where flying is, for several reasons, less expensive than elsewhere. It is not uncommon in the UK where private flying is very expensive.

Cost-sharing is lawful provided the arrangement complies with the relevant national restrictions/conditions. I have noticed frequently over the years that many pilots believe the regulations are more restrictive than they actually are - sometimes confidently referring to some supposed 'rule' that doesn't exist.
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 13:40
  #30 (permalink)  
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Cost-sharing is lawful provided the arrangement complies with the relevant national restrictions/conditions.
Certainly it is. The understanding of those conditions and restrictions is important. If an error is to be made, it is best done to the conservative, so that in the unlikely case of an "event" and insurance claim, the insurer is agreeing to what their role is - defending the insured, and paying a claim.

If the entry point to a discussion between GA aware people is "hey, can I cost share a ride from Phoenix to Vegas when you're going?", great. But, when that morphs to a non aviation person being supplied a paid place in a private aircraft, on a quasi scheduled basis, I think the factors are being skewed away from simple "cost sharing".

Yes, perhaps there is a match made in heaven, where two people with near identical commuting needs come together, and it works out for both. If so, that does not require discussion on a public forum, just quietly let it happen, completely within the regs.

But if the result of an inquiry is one person paying for a flight provided by another "private" person, and that flight has been tailored to the "customer", I support the genuine charter/commercial service providers in saying that it could be an unfair intrusion on legal and legitimate provision of a service which is their business.

For the little I know about the "Uber taxi" business model, there seems to be as much objection to the concept by regulators, as embracing the concept by users. I think that GA would be even more vulnerable to legitimate objection in that business format.

GA is served well when more people happily get involved, and thus I support Foxmoth's observation. However, GA is not well served, when "the public" see "rich flyboys" sidestepping regulation, or reducing the perception of safety. In my opinion, there is a fine line here, and it is only fair that the factors on both sides of that line are presented.

Flying in very expensive in many countries, including the UK. Without cost-sharing, many people could not afford to fly, or to fly as often.
...Is a reason to optimize flying, but not to skew the intent of the regulations. Again, the fine line.

Most of those of us who participate here are awesomely fortunate to live in countries where private flying is possible at all! Every time I fly, I think of how lucky I am to fly as freely as I do. I have flown in many countries where flying privately just would never be possible. There is a cost for that freedom to fly, and that cost is an element of the "expensive" cost to fly. We're lucky that we can bear that expense at all!

I remain jaded in that I have known pilots/owners who flew Roll Royce & Jaguar, on a Ford Escort budget, frequently attempting to fund the effort externally. Some pilots are poor at knowing their financial limitations, and trouble can result. So, I have uneasy feelings when the Bonanza owner cost shares because they have to, when flying a 172 would be more within their means. The cost share flight "has" to happen (get home itis) so safety can be compromised.

It's fair and appropriate that cost sharing bee discussed here, though there are some topics which when stirred more, don't really become more clear, and I think this is one of them.
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 16:16
  #31 (permalink)  
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Which some might think is a good reason for paying attention to what specialist lawyers say about the topic rather than clouding it with theories
Fair enough, but being as this is an anonymous aviation forum, forgive some of us specialist aviators for not knowing when the posted information is authoritative and absolute from a specialist lawyer.
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 16:45
  #32 (permalink)  
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Step Turn.
Trust me. You can trust Flying Lawyer.
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 20:51
  #33 (permalink)  
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How would one be fixed (if they held no licence) and they brought there own aircraft and then paid a suitably qualified pilot to fly them about?
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 21:27
  #34 (permalink)  
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How would one be fixed (if they held no licence) and they brought there own aircraft and then paid a suitably qualified pilot to fly them about?
So long as the 'suitably qualified pilot' has a professional licence, perfectly legal.

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Old 31st Mar 2015, 23:03
  #35 (permalink)  
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I have read your OP together with the subsequent posts.

May I suggest that you consider the following :-

a) Seek an aircraft that fulfils your mission profile and budget (including
operating costs).

b) Upon purchase of said aircraft, set up a flying group.

c) You may deposit some money into that flying group for operating
expenses and suchlike.

d) You may, or may not be able to sell any 1/20th shares in the aircraft but I
am quite sure that you could convince your flying buddy to buy a share.

You may pay your flying buddy to wash/valet the said aircraft from time to time.

Your flying buddy may even invite you to Phoenix and Vegas from time to time on days that suits your own itinerary.

I'm not a lawyer and that advice is worth as much as you have paid for it.
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 23:43
  #36 (permalink)  
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Step Turn.
Trust me. You can trust Flying Lawyer.
I agree. Flying Lawyer's posts on legal matters are on a par with John Farley's posts on test flying and Harriers in terms of being authoritative.
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Old 1st Apr 2015, 03:32
  #37 (permalink)  
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@ flying lawyer and markerinbound.

Sorry - "CF" was a typo for "CPL (Commerical pilot's license)" - having just typed "CFI" for a flight instructor rating, my mind burped.

I did think my description of the enhanced requirements for the aircraft itself was adequate shorthand for the requirements of Part 135 - IN THE CONTEXT of answering a question from a non-technical non-pilot with likely little idea of what "Part 135" or "Part 119" could possibly mean.

I.E. it can't just be a private plane off the flight line...it must meet more demanding regulations.

The NET thrust of my response was that his planned adventure would run into significant regulatory problems and be very expensive.

Anyone actually disagree with that?
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Old 1st Apr 2015, 15:53
  #38 (permalink)  
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@ Strake/India Four Two

A mighty fine submission, which I am sure His Honour would endorse.
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Old 1st Apr 2015, 18:03
  #39 (permalink)  
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How would one be fixed (if they held no licence) and they brought there own aircraft and then paid a suitably qualified pilot to fly them about?

So long as the 'suitably qualified pilot' has a professional licence, perfectly legal.

No problem at all, that's exactly how Me and lots of other pilots make our living!

3 Pont
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Old 1st Apr 2015, 21:50
  #40 (permalink)  
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Great responses - I especially like the ones telling me to "just get your own plane". Hopefully Gulfstream accepts credit card points and green shield stamps.

I know you lot are all millionaires but think of the impoverished man. Having said that if I could recoup all my losses from Vegas.......

It was an interesting thought though - I confess my biggest surprise was the actual cost, probably about $400. Light aviation certainly isn't light on the wallet.
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