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Aircraft Operations in the USA: Fuel, Additional Services and Security

By April 13, 2020September 24th, 2021No Comments

As the largest business aviation market in the world, the United States serves as the
vanguard of business travel. With a vast territory and a wealthier population compared
to most of the world, the number of private aircraft and airports is — unsurprisingly –
very high.

However, this does not mean that undertaking a private aircraft operation in the U.S. is
an easy task. There are a number of details that an aircraft operator must be aware of,
or at the minimum have a partner they can trust to help with planning.


Across the United States, each of the fifty states has its own unique culture that makes
visiting all the more interesting. With each state also comes unique laws and taxation
that can affect how much it costs to land an aircraft. Each state’s fuel taxes are also in
addition to a federal fuel tax, which may make the cost calculation process seem more

With these rules, it may make sense for you to consider alternative airports for travel in
some cases. For instance, if you are headed to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, you may prefer
to land in one of Chicago’s airports and then make the rest of the trip by car. This is
because the Wisconsin state tax on jet fuel is almost six times the state tax charged in

Migrations and Security

Thankfully, for those worried about travel, the United States has remained one of the
safest countries to travel through since the early 2000s. Most airports face strict
security procedures with passengers, with officials tirelessly searching for anything that
compromises the flight integrity.

While this may provide peace of mind, it is important to secure a visa for travel if you
live in a country that is not one of the 39 places allowed short-term, visa-free travel to
the United States. Depending on the time of year, the bureaucratic process for
obtaining a U.S. visa may take additional time, even if your planned visit is for tourism
or a short business stay.

Additional Services

Whether its long customs arrival lines or security wait times associated with
commercial travel, these frustrations make flying private all the more luxurious,
especially in the US. Thankfully, passengers originating from FBOs are not subject to
the hassles of waiting in the long lines of TSA’s security screenings.

In addition, given the large size of business aviation in the United States, the overall
structure of FBO services is arguably the best in the world. For a large portion of the
nation’s secondary airports, slots restrictions are slimmer and thus business aircraft
traffic is less restricted, providing significant convenience. Combine the two, and it
makes all the difference in planning business travel.

Bottom Line

Since Charles Lindberg first took off from Kitty Hawk in 1903, the U.S. has strived to
provide access to travel for its millions of citizens and visitors from across the globe.
Since then, the nation has developed a significant business aviation market, making it
much easier to travel in and out for business and pleasure. While their certainly
challenges to be aware of – visa requirements, state fuel taxes – having a flight
planning partner can be a great addition to ensure you can have a hassle-free trip.


Feel free to contact our team here at Flightworx today for advice on flight planning and aviation fuel supply.

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