Most countries –including the U.S.- charge for the use of their airspace and ATC services. The application, regulations and procedures for assessing, calculating and making payment of airspace fees varies from country to country.
Important facts to be aware of:
Some countries waive the airspace fee owed if you land or depart from the country while others charge regardless of landing or departure point
Some countries will send an invoice; others do not
The currency and payment procedures vary by country and can be very cumbersome and difficult to comply with
Unpaid airspace fees can accrue back taxes and interest, growing over time
Aircraft can be denied entry into airspace or detained upon arrival in a foreign country
Regulations and procedures vary and can change at any time
When purchasing a used aircraft, make sure that you are not also purchasing the unpaid airspace fee liabilities of that aircraft. Most foreign countries assess the debts to the aircraft, not the operator. With our Airspace Fee services, we determine what you owe and get it paid for you.
Mexico, like most other countries, charges for the use of its airspace and for ATC over-time when pilots use a Mexican airport outside of its official operating hours.
Four things that set Mexico’s airspace fee processing apart from those of other countries:
The regulations are not published in Mexico’s Aeronautical Information Publication (AIP) and therefore do not appear in any international aeronautical publications. They are published in Mexico’s tax code
Airspace fees are calculated based on the wingspan of the aircraft and NOT on weight
Mexico does not issue an invoice to advise pilots that they have incurred a fee. It is the pilot’s responsibility to determine the amount owed per the regulations
Airspace and over-time fees can only be paid via a Mexican bank
If during the last 10 years your aircraft made a flight through Mexican airspace that neither took off from, nor landed in, Mexico, you are subject to Mexican airspace fees. Also, any aircraft that landed at a Mexican airport outside of its normal operating hours has incurred an ATC overtime fee which must be paid using the same procedures as airspace fees. Failing to pay these fees can result in denial of entry into Mexican airspace or the detention of the aircraft upon landing in Mexico. Considering the size of Mexican airspace, denial of entry can present a significant navigational challenge to a pilot making a flight from the USA or Canada to destinations in Central America, South America and some places in the Caribbean.
Hindsight is wonderful but foresight is better,
especially when it comes to saving life, or some pain.