Flying into Vancouver

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milotron
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Flying into Vancouver

#1 Post by milotron » Mon Feb 05, 2018 8:09 pm

Hey,
I have some recurring work appointments in downtown Vancouver and am looking for some alternatives to Harbour Air/Helijet.

Is VYR accommodating at all to general aviation? I understand there is a ramp fee at the FBO, but how bad is it to fly in there? Slot times required?
Is Boundary bay a better choice, even though it has a long drive with no transit or rentals?

thanks,
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ahramin
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#2 Post by ahramin » Mon Feb 05, 2018 9:17 pm

IFR flow can occasionally be an issue and it will not matter where you are coming from. You're not likely to have a delay long enough to justify flying into ZBB though. VFR no problem. The airport is perfectly friendly if you're willing to pay the fees. If cost isn't a problem, I'd definitely go YVR rather ZBB. Actually, if cost is a problem I'd still avoid ZBB, go to Delta Airpark instead: free parking.
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FOD_Vacuum
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#3 Post by FOD_Vacuum » Mon Feb 05, 2018 11:25 pm

Well if you are into fitness, you could walk from the South Airport area (assuming you would fly in to YVR privately) to Templeton Sky Train station (about 35 minutes) and then take the Sky train directly into downtown waterfront (takes 20 mins) or you could cab it to Templeton station for a small fee.
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milotron
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#4 Post by milotron » Tue Feb 06, 2018 7:52 am

Thanks. Less concerned about the costs than travel time from the airport to downtown. ZBB has to drive 99 through the tunnel, while YVR is much closer and can take skytrain.
I wasn't sure how VYR treats little planes coming in, and I have never done IFR flow before... first time for everything I suppose!
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altiplano
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#5 Post by altiplano » Tue Feb 06, 2018 8:18 am

You could always call the Shell or Esso ahead of time about ramp fees, let them know you're coming...

Might save you some time vs. just showing up on their ramp?
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ahramin
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#6 Post by ahramin » Tue Feb 06, 2018 11:22 pm

You definitely don't want to just show up on their ramp. Call ahead with an ETA.
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milotron
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#7 Post by milotron » Wed Feb 07, 2018 7:33 am

Of course. I always book any FBO requirements 1 week or more in advance. Thanks for the advice.
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pelmet
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#8 Post by pelmet » Wed Feb 07, 2018 10:25 am

So to answer the question....how easy is it to fly VFR into YVR in a non-scheduled flight like a C172?
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ahramin
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#9 Post by ahramin » Wed Feb 07, 2018 11:09 am

Very easy pelmet, but the question didn't say anything about VFR or 172s.
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16SidedOffice
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#10 Post by 16SidedOffice » Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:04 pm

Ad-hoc VFR, 172, Cherokee, Canuck, or Cub, it really doesn't matter. Have a good look on the VTA for the VFR arrival procedures and call prior to entering the zone. It's pretty common.
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milotron
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#11 Post by milotron » Thu Feb 08, 2018 8:03 pm

Does YVR get that many small, private planes in? I have yet to see a another GA aircraft in the Flightaware history; are the not listed?
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lhalliday
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#12 Post by lhalliday » Thu Feb 08, 2018 8:26 pm

I've seen a couple of 172s taxi from the FBOs to 26L and take off.

On my PPL long cross country I needed to divert (unexpected headwinds coming back from Powell River, running out of daylight, not going to make it back to Langley in time) and seriously considered YVR. I ended up at Pitt Meadows.

...laura
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16SidedOffice
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#13 Post by 16SidedOffice » Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:11 pm

In the better weather months, they get maybe a 6-12 a day sometimes more. Anything from flight school students just wanting the experience to someone needing to be closer to downtown than Pitt or Boundary Bay.
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CpnCrunch
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#14 Post by CpnCrunch » Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:18 pm

Harbour Air has a 172 for use by their employees that is based at YVR.

https://flightaware.com/live/flight/CGMXV
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hangar3
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Re: Flying into Vancouver

#15 Post by hangar3 » Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:36 pm

I fly a C172 into YVR somewhat frequently. The controllers are friendly most of the time.
Tips:

- Make sure to check NOTAMs for any VFR restrictions. This is more of a problem in the summer, but they have traffic flow restrictions sometimes. You will learn your lesson when they tell you can't land there in mid flight.

- Check your VTA for arrival procedures. There are a lot of arrival paths, but the controllers know where you want to go, and they try to accommodate if possible. But you need to know the VFR waypoints or at least have an idea of what the area looks like. This is IMPORTANT because there are a LOT of planes flying in the area at low level, and you don't want to hit anyone. If talking to Terminal/Vancouver Harbour, tell them you are unfamiliar with the area and they will usually give you clear visual references. If you don't know the area, they will be hesitant to accommodate you to do specific things.

- Check where your FBO is and ask if you can land at the nearest runway. EX: If going to Shell, land 08R/26L, or land 08L/26R and taxi for 30min to get there.

-Fly at low peak times, otherwise expect to hold ~30+ minutes at the threshold for takeoff.

- Something that may be unusual: when ready for takeoff, switch to Tower frequency, but don't call. They can see you in sequence, and will talk to you when ready. May be the same for ground after you land, the controller will expect you to be on frequency ASAP and will just talk to you. Generally south ramp is "Taxi at your discretion."

- There is supposedly a shuttle from the south terminal to the north terminal. Never used it, but it can get you to the Skytrain allegedly.

- Weather is generally garbage this time of year. If Harbour Air/etc aren't flying, I'm not sure you will be either.

- Boundary Bay is MUCH further from Vancouver than it looks like on the map, and the transit links are very poor! Pitt Meadows is also very far.
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