Night flying imposes conditions with additional difficulties on passengers and pilots, with attendant legal restrictions.

Many countries do not allow civilian aircraft to fly at night under Visual Flight Rules, and require pilots to be Instrument Rated to fly at night.

Flight paths are restricted, there may be prohibitions against takeoffs and/or landings, and/or ground operations such as engine runups or taxiing.

En route Wellington to Christchurch

First light on the wing. En route Wellington to Christchurch (New Zealand)

UK Edit

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Night flight in the UK

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The UK does not allow civilian aircraft to fly at night, However, unlike many countries with a similar night VFR ban it does not require pilots to be instrument rated.

Night QualificationEdit

According to CAA FCL form SRG\1126 (current September 2006), a minimum of 5 hours night time flight is required for a night qualification. Of these 5 hours, at least 3 hours must be dual instruction and at least 1 hour must be cross-country navigation. In addition to the flight time requirements, a minimum of 5 solo take-offs and 5 solo full-stop landings are also required. Touch-and-goes are permitted at night, but the solo training requirement is for full-stop landings; the aircraft must come to a complete halt before taking off again for each circuit completed during the solo part of the training. The minima specified apply only to the aeroplane night qualification. The requirements for helicopter night qualification are far more stringent and include a minimum of 100 hours post-PPL(H) experience as pilot of helicopters. The night qualification permits flight at night under Instrument Flight Rules in Visual Meteorological Conditions outside controlled airspace. It is important to stress this: the qualification does not allow the pilot to enter Instrument meteorological conditions, it merely shows that the pilot has done sufficient basic instrument flight training to fly on clear nights.

Control ZonesEdit

The Night Qualification only allows night flight under IFR outside controlled airspace. Access to airports inside controlled airspace by aircraft flying visually is obtained by flying under Special VFR within the airport's control zone.

See alsoEdit


External linksEdit

Night flying restrictions Edit

Moscow at night from the air Beltyukov

Moscow as seen at night from an Air Berlin Airbus A320, 2011

Regulations or legislation are imposed by governing bodies to limit the ground-perceived exposure to aircraft noise during the night hours, when the majority of residents are trying to sleep. Such regulations may include restrictions to available flight paths, or prohibitions against takeoffs, or prohibitions against takeoffs and landings, or prohibitions against ground operations (engine runups or taxiing).

European airports Edit

Wikipedia:Wikipedia:File:Nachtflugbeschraenkungen.jpgExample: Night flying restrictions at German airports

Night flying restrictions, commonly known as curfews, are common at airports in Europe.

Situation at London airports Edit

The night restrictions for Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted define a night period, 2300-0700 hours, and a night quota period, 2330–0600 hours. During the night period, the noisiest types of aircraft (classified as QC/4 QC/8 or QC/16) may not be scheduled to land or to take off (other than in the most exceptional circumstances). In addition, during the night quota period movements by most other types of aircraft (including the new QC/0.25 category) will be restricted by a movements limit and a noise quota, which are set for each season.[1]

References Edit

Wikipedia:de:Nachtflugverbot Wikipedia:fr:Restrictions des vols de nuit

Red-eye flight Edit

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Red-eye flight
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A red-eye flight is any flight departing late at night and arriving early the next morning. The term red-eye derives from the fatigue symptom of having red eyes, which can be caused or aggravated by late-night travel.

A red-eye flight typically moves east during the night hours. It departs late at night, lasts only about three to five hours, an insufficient period to get fully rested in flight, and due to forward time zone changes the aircraft lands around dawn. As a result, many travelers are unable to get sufficiently rested before a new day of activity. From a marketing standpoint, the flights allow business travelers an opportunity to migrate eastward without having an impact on a full business day.

Most eastward transatlantic crossings from North America to Europe are operated overnight, but are generally not viewed as red-eye flights since they depart early in the evening and last at least seven hours. A full night's rest is theoretically possible as this is close to the seven to nine hours of nightly sleep recommended by the US Wikipedia:National Sleep Foundation.

Examples Edit

Other meanings Edit

The term can refer to any overnight flight which travels in the direction similar to Wikipedia:Earth's rotation (i.e. eastwards). The term may also be used to refer to many long-distance international flights which are long, even though the aircraft may never travel through a time zone that is in darkness.

Historical availability Edit

In the 1930s and 1940s, red-eye flights were not possible, as most Wikipedia:airports did not have the equipment necessary to work at night. There are still airports that do not function after certain hours, or have curfews for noise reasons, limiting the number of airports from which red-eye flights can depart.

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Night flying
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In fiction Edit

The 2005 movie Red Eye is partly situated on a red-eye flight. The 2006 movie Wikipedia:Snakes on a Plane takes place on a red-eye flight from Wikipedia:Hawaii to Wikipedia:Los Angeles.

References Edit

  1. [1]
  3. Gol pede autorização permanente para operar vôo noturno Folha Online. Retrieved on April 07, 2009.
  4. TAM lança ofertas corujão a partir de R$ 79,50 Rotas e Trilhas. Retrieved on April 07, 2009.

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