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What is it about?

AOPA has heard from thousands of pilots that certain FBO Chain companies charge hidden ramp fees, tie down fees, facility fees, infrastructure fees, access fees and even fees for being picked up by a taxi at an FBO. Pilots are often charged for services they don’t ask for or receive and they have no way of easily knowing what those fees are prior to traveling. Pilots also have no knowledge of where sponsor-controlled transient GA parking areas are at the busiest GA airports because they are not depicted on airport diagrams, even though many airports already provide a parking area specifically for transient GA aircraft. Most of these complaints originate at airports with a large chain FBO or where a chain FBO has a monopoly position. These practices are pushing general aviation pilots away from publicly funded community airports and AOPA is working on behalf of all pilots to make ramp fees and parking ramps transparent.

Most FBOs, over 90% of them, do a great job of serving the general aviation community by balancing their need for profitability with the need to provide transparent and reasonable prices. However, 10% of the FBOs, especially those owned by large chain companies (like Signature Flight Support and Atlantic Aviation), continue to hide the ramp fees they impose on GA pilots. AOPA is working with the industry, regulators, and community leaders to ensure pricing and ramp transparency at our nation’s public-use airports with these initiatives:

  1. AOPA and 5 aviation associations published the Know Before You Go best practices for FBOs to encourage voluntarily make their ramp fees available online.
  2. We updated and improved the AOPA Airport Directory to make it easy for FBOs to make their ramp fees available to the flying public.

Progress to date:

  1. Almost 800 FBOs, including 3 chain companies, have taken advantage of the AOPA Airport Directory to publish their ramp fees.
  2. An increasing number of airports have voluntarily implemented updates to their airport diagram using AOPAs recommended terms and more airports are in the process of updating their diagrams.

For current fuel prices and the reported fees at FBOs that choose to report them, you can use the iFlight Planner for AOPA and AOPA Airport Directory.

We will continue to update this page with progress, articles, videos and discussion topics as more develops on this critical issue to general aviation. If you have encountered an issue with hidden FBO ramp fees, please report it here.

Join the discussion and let us know about your FBO experiences at the online Pilot Information Center.

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