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Regulatory Hot Topics

Prepare for New European Passenger Entry Programs

Industry Challenge

Two eu-LISA passenger-entry programs will launch in 2024, though applicability of the programs is still unclear.

NBAA Response

NBAA is coordinating closely with EBAA, the Canadian Business Aviation Association and the EU agencies involved to ensure smooth implementation of the eu-LISA programs.

Operators that travel to Europe are encouraged to begin the registration process to participate in the European Union’s new passenger-entry systems, managed and overseen by the European Union Agency for the Operational Management of Large-Scale IT Systems in the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice (eu-LISA).

All carriers flying passengers into the EU must register for two new passenger-entry programs – Entry/Exit System (EES) and European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) – to verify details regarding travels arriving to the 27 countries that now make up the Schengen Area.

In March 2023, eu-LISA announced that the deadlines for both EES and ETIAS have been delayed until 2024, but exact dates have not been specified.

A “carrier” is defined as any natural or legal person whose profession it is to provide transport of persons, according to Schengen Border Code article 2.15. The entry requirements apply to Part 135 and 125 operations. Applicability of the eu-LISA requirements is still unclear for Part 91 operators. Adding to the confusion regarding eu-LISA applicability is the fact each member state might have a different interpretation of “carrier.”

Experts agree the safest option is for all aircraft operators to register for the programs.

“There are no real consequences for filing when you don’t need to, but you create a risk for your passengers and crew if you don’t file and should have.”

Adam Hartley Global Regulatory Services, Universal Weather and Aviation, Inc.

“The responsible position is to register and be ready to comply,” said Adam Hartley, product owner, strategy and development in Global Regulatory Services at Universal Weather and Aviation, Inc. “There are no real consequences for filing when you don’t need to, but you create a risk for your passengers and crew if you don’t file and should have.”

NBAA and other stakeholders are working with eu-LISA to obtain clarity on applicability.

“NBAA is taking a global approach and is coordinating closely with EBAA, the Canadian Business Aviation Association and the EU agencies involved to ensure smooth implementation,” said Brian Koester, CAM, NBAA’s director of flight operations and regulations.

However, aircraft operators should not wait for additional guidance in hopes of being exempt from the requirements. The registration process is not immediate, so operators should plan ahead.

Juan Muniz, lead global regulatory service specialist at Universal Weather and Aviation, Inc., explained the registration process is fairly straightforward; however, eu-LISA administrators are very particular about what party can manage the transaction for the operator. Essentially, third-party vendors are not permitted to register on the carrier’s behalf, but they can help operators navigate the registration process for full compliance.

“Despite confusion about the definition of ‘carrier’ and the possibility of different interpretations by different states, there might be negative consequences if passenger information is not provided,” said Robert Baltus, EBAA chief operating officer. “The safest option, recommended by EBAA, is to always provide passenger information through eu-LISA.”

Baltus explained the information required by eu-LISA is similar to that regularly provided to FBOs and hotels in Europe, although eu-LISA’s systems are much more secure.

The EES and the ETIAS will help ensure compliance with visa requirements. They also are expected to identify potential risks and security concerns, including terrorism and serious crimes, as well as epidemic risks.

Review the details of the regs at nbaa.org/eu-entry.

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