3 More Things You Won’t Expect During Your Aircraft Transaction

3 More Things You Won’t Expect During Your Aircraft Transaction

October 13, 2017

Part 2 in a series of Things You Won’t Expect During Your Aircraft Transaction

During the course of the transaction, normal events such as the Pre-Purchase Inspection or the Test Flight can pose time delays that a buyer or seller may not expect. Understanding where some of these may potentially lie is key to progressing through your transaction smoothly and confidently.

Below is the second part of our list of things you may not have expected to occur during your aircraft transaction:

  1. Scheduling the Government Surveyors to come out to provide the correct documentation can take days to weeks (and fingers crossed not longer than that). The Export Certificate of Airworthiness requires a government inspector to visit the aircraft. You are reliant on the availability and scheduling of that country’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We have seen it take up to 5 weeks before. Some smaller CAA’s focus mainly on airliners and the private sector gets pushed far down the priority list, and they assign fewer surveyors to perform this task. Your broker will schedule for this visit to take place but understanding that timing is at the mercy of the government CAA can avert frustrations that otherwise would arise when you have different time expectations.
  2. The time frame on the Pre-Purchase Inspection quote from the Inspection Facility does not include the actual time of fixing defects. The time frame quoted to you is the time the facility will take to inspect the areas you have asked them to inspect. It does not include ordering any parts that are needed, installing those parts and getting the aircraft returned back to service. Sometimes only minor defects are found, and the aircraft can be fixed and back in service in no time at all. Other times, a part may be needed that is on back order and will take weeks to get in.
  3. Pilots are not always available when you need them to be. Transactions will commonly require a test flight before closing which, of course, requires pilots. Often, the aircraft’s normal crew has been let go by the time it gets to this point in the transaction period and your broker or operator will have to find and schedule crew. This usually involves moving that crew around from where they are based to where the Test Flight is occurring. It is just another aspect of the transaction that has the potential to add a day or more to your closing time line.

As we said previously, there are so many moving parts and aspects to each aircraft transaction, and no two tranasctions are alike. Your aircraft broker will and should manage and coordinate this process to make it as smooth as possible, but managing expectations of possible delays and complications can make the entire transaction more enjoyable.


Articles are written from real world experience by Colibri Aircraft’s individuals. If you have any questions or comments about the topic of this blog, please feel free to contact us at enquiries@colibriaircraft.com