Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Registering the Microlight in France

When we bought our microlight we intended to register it in France eventually. At the moment it carries the UK registration G-TARG. If you are into microlights then you may recognise this number as being the machine that won the 2007 world microlight championships in the two seat weight shift class at the hands of Rob Grimwood.

Yesterday I started the process. My first point of contact was FFPLUM (http://www.ffplum.com), who are the French equivalent of the UKs British Microlight Aircraft Association (BMAA). They gave me the telephone number of Aviation Civile, in the south west of France. The equivalent of the CAA, but regionalised in France.

I phoned Mr Touzineud, but he was not answering. Ten minutes later he phoned me and, speaking good English, explained what forms I would need and where on the web to get them from. One things that were needed were the Air Creation serial numbers for both the trike and the wing, but all that I had was the BMAA serial number.

Next step was to phone Air Creation in France, (www.aircreation.com) the people who manufacture the microlight. After a struggle trying to explain what I wanted in French. It turned out that the kind lady who answered the phone spoke perfect English and connected me with Mr. Tilloy, the sales manger, who again speaks English. Mr. Tilloy knew my microlight immediately and gave me the required serial numbers, but told me to check them with Ben Ashman in the UK. Once I had done this I was to send him and email and he will send me out all the correct paperwork to obtain the French registration.

I then phoned Flylight (www.flylight.co.uk) who are the UK importers for Air Creation microlights and asked if they could verify the serial numbers that Air Creation France had. Less than 24 hours later this was done, thanks Ben.

An email was then sent to Mr. Tilloy and followed up with a phone call. Once again the conversation was in English and was, in my opinion, a very interesting one. Mr. Tilloy was willing to help as much as he could; we spoke about the new wing that they have developed, the glass instrument panel and much more.

I have been amazed at how helpful all the people have been in this quest and I look forward to having a new registration with the number 24 in it. 24 is the department number for the Dordogne in France.

When this is all complete the cost to me of registering the aircraft will be the grand sum of €40. The aircraft will no longer need the annual permit to fly that can cost over £100 every year.

The next step is to change my pilots license for a French one, which is a license for life and needs no medical certificate. Very different to the UK where there are minimum hours to fly and, as with everything to do with flying in the UK, has a cost.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

No new posts for a while

I must apologise to the many people who have followed this blog and have emailed asking why there were no new posts for so long.
We have been away. We decided to take a trip to Germany to see the Aachen Christmas markets (post to follow).