Flying in Belize

Posted By: aerco

Flying in Belize - 09/24/07 11:14 PM

Does anyone have any experience with private flying in Belize? Places to go, any interesting people connected with flying? Ultralight flying rules and regulations? Experimental/homebuilt aircraft rules? Any dialog on this subject would interest me.
Posted By: catdance62

Re: Flying in Belize - 09/25/07 04:55 PM

Hi there,
We flew from Texas to Belize in 2004. We hugged the gulf coast around MExico and then straight across just north of the Guat. border. You must have over-flight permission prior to flight for Guatemala if you chose to over-fly. When we flew into Belize we had a handler named George Gillett--he is very good and made our entry paperwork go smoothly. The only unfortunate thing is that the aviation authourity did not allow us to fly wherever we wanted to in the country. Our main destination was Placencia area, but we wanted to also go down to Punta Gorda and up to Corozal etc. They told us that every time we wanted to fly somewhere new we had to go through Belize City and clear it with them, which of course was totally inconvenient. I don't know if they were concerned about the possibility of drugs or contraband being transported, or if it was a safety issue of some other sort, or what. I think that the next time we go in our plane (we've been a few times commercially since then), we will probably be able to get permission to go a few places without having to "check in". The other bad thing is that the only place you can purchase aviation fuel for private aircraft is at BZE or the municipal airport. Which really sucked because while we were parked at the Placencia airstrip, a lot of our fuel got stolen; they left us just enough to fly back to BZE. Another thing: after you leave BZE it is all CTAF. Which is OK, but there is a lot of traffic what with Maya Island Air and Tropic Air going regular routes all day and the pilots all are mostly speaking Kriol, whcih makes it hard to understand who is where etc. If you call out your intentions in English though, they will respond in kind.
Plus, aviation fule is expensive, so be aware of that. If you have a Garmin 396 or better that is good so you can check out your terrain avoidance going through Mexico.
Any more questions ask. I had a blog about it on btu I dont' know if it is still up.
Posted By: Caye Connect

Re: Flying in Belize - 09/25/07 05:29 PM

I have some friends that are flying all around the world. Belize was there first stop after leaving Miami. They are currently in South America with intentions of flying across the Atlantic to Africa. Here is the site documenting the Belize leg of the adventure:

Flight plan from Miami to Belize is left hand side link.
Posted By: aerco

Re: Flying in Belize - 09/25/07 09:30 PM

Thanks for the feedback. I have only been to Belize once, but loved it. I would love to start a commercial ultralight operation there (that being my area of expertise) but find it hard to get real answers to my questions. Offical sources don't seem to respond to e-mail inquiries and even big, impressive letters seem to get no result.

Posted By: SimonB

Re: Flying in Belize - 09/25/07 09:55 PM
Posted By: reaper

Re: Flying in Belize - 09/26/07 12:15 AM

You should schedule a meeting in person at Civil Aviation. Their office is upstairs in Goldson Airport.
Speak with Mr. Nigel Carter.
Ultralights will not be well received at first.
You have to be very persistent to get an operating certificate.
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: Flying in Belize - 09/26/07 12:21 AM

I was waiting for Reaper's contribution. 6 years ago I thought of bringing a plane here and rapidly realised it would be very difficult. Mind you, that would have been on floats and I think they are especially wary of planes that can land on water because of drug running.
Posted By: catdance62

Re: Flying in Belize - 09/26/07 02:59 AM

Yeah, I thought a Lake would've been great, but then thought about the hassle it would've been........
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: Flying in Belize - 09/26/07 06:04 AM

I had in mind something slightly more modest. More like a 206 on floats.
Posted By: waterbat

Re: Flying in Belize - 09/27/07 02:41 PM

how about a widgeon or a live aboard albatross. oh to have dreams.................
Posted By: aerco

Re: Flying in Belize - 10/02/07 03:51 AM

Hey, a live-aboard Albatross has got to be the ULTIMATE dream! I have been doodling on the design for something like it (about the size of a Goose actually, two Russian M14 engines))for about 20 years. Maybe another 20 and I'll get somewhere with it.

Regarding the concerns about floatplanes and drugs etc.; I was thinking in terms of Quicksilver-type ultralights on floats. Not the best thing to run drugs in, since the average boat in Belize could outrun it and its range is miniscule. But considering other activities such as parasailing,, waterskiing, jet skis, etc, UL's impact is actually very low. Certainly less noisy than a water ski boat and the noise is passing, not confined to one area all the time. And with a little effort, it can be reduced to a level that would not bother anyone, compared to the annoying whine of jet-skis.
But you're right, it really needs some legwork done in person down there, possibly demonstrating the practicality and its low impact.

Thanks for the input.
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