Flying & Packing Tips for EAA AirVenture 2023
July 12, 2023
Every year, over half a million aviation enthusiasts worldwide take to the skies and arrive to Oshkosh, Wisconsin, for the legendary EAA AirVenture. As you prepare for this exciting event, we’ll take you on a journey ensuring you have a safe flight with your Cirrus Aircraft into Oshkosh and the essentials to pack for an unforgettable time at EAA AirVenture.
Flying into one of the busiest airports in the world (at least for one magical week each July) can be intricate. Here are our Top Five Quick Tips for flying into EAA AirVenture to make your trip more enjoyable.
Tip 2: Be Ready
Before you start your arrival: complete your checklists, have your aircraft configured properly, load your frequencies and brief your speeds and altitudes.
Tip 3: Be Observant
During EAA AirVenture, you’re flying into one of the busiest airspaces in the world. Turn your lights on. Watch for traffic outside and on your MFD and/or PFD (if equipped). Get in line. Side-by-sides and over-unders don’t work. Be sure to carry some speed to the runway.
Tip 4: Be Adaptable
If the weather changes or traffic gets congested, expect a diversion. Carry some extra fuel, stay calm and be ready to go with the flow.
Tip 5: Be Safe
Know your limits. Don’t press a bad situation. Be safe out there and get ready to see more airplanes gathered than any other day of the year – we’re excited!
ADDITIONAL ADVICE FROM THOMAS KLOTZ
With ten years of flying under his belt, Thomas Klotz, Flight Training Developer at Cirrus Aircraft, has experienced this journey countless times – both as a private pilot and Cirrus Aircraft corporate pilot. Provided is some of his wisdom to assist those who want to join the world’s largest aviation gathering.
Q: What is a Notice to Airmen?
If you want to fly to Oshkosh, the NOTICE is the essential playbook for what you will need to know, and you should have a copy onboard. Each year there are small important changes, so make sure to review it prior to departure.
Q: Do I need to fill out any forms prior to arriving at Oshkosh?
No. However, you will need to print a parking sign and departure sign. Immediately after landing, place the parking sign on the pilot’s window so the ground crew can direct you to park and tie down your aircraft. Your departure sign will determine whether you are taking off via VFR or IFR. If you plan to operate IFR, read the NOTICE carefully, as specific requests and clearances are needed.
Q: Having flown to Oshkosh multiple times, is there anything you would recommend?
Bring extra fuel if possible. A lot is happening in a small place, so weather, parking, traffic, or other variables may require you to stay in a holding pattern or re-route to a neighboring airport.
Yes. Because of the large number of aircraft trying to land, the communication is mainly one-directional. Pilot chatter practically ceases upon arrival. Instead, your communication is primarily with ground control men, who spot each aircraft and call the pilot to rock the aircraft’s wings in acknowledgment – a simple left and right action of your wings. The various radio frequencies for the event will be listed in the NOTICE.
Q: Should you expect a holding pattern?
It is possible that you will be asked to hold. While ground control makes every effort to bring planes in quickly, their foremost goal is safety. Aircraft may be placed in a holding pattern to account for landings and departures – ranging from a few short minutes to a decent amount of time – which is why extra fuel is important!
Q: What might be a challenge for the final approach?
A spot landing is not unusual at Oshkosh, so I recommend practicing spot landings before your trip. The runway at Oshkosh will have a painted color scheme and various numbers, and ground control may direct you to land on a specific color or number. While it may require some practice, it’s a good challenge!
Q: How can you get more information about departures while at Oshkosh?
Departure briefings occur daily, from 0700-1330 and 1630-1800, and provide an informal recap on safety, weather, and other important items. These are held in the main Departure Briefing building, located east of the control tower (as well as other dedicated small briefing buildings). EAA staff in aircraft parking areas can also provide information and extra resources can be found on the website.
THE PERFECT TRAVEL BAG
It will be humid out, so pack bug repellent to protect yourself from bug bites.
Don’t turn into a lobster this EAA AirVenture; protect yourself from UV rays with SPF30+.
Protect your eyes so you can look at incredible aircraft for years.
Discover all that EAA AirVenture offers by making sure you pack comfortable shoes.
Don’t let your phone die while trying to take an excellent picture; make sure your phone stays charged.
This hydration co-pilot won’t disappoint; keep your water cold with an insulated water bottle.
Keep the sun out of the way with a lightweight hat.
Wisconsin’s weather is unpredictable; stay dry with a lightweight jacket or poncho.
Backpack or Fanny Pack
Reminisce your time in the 80s/90s and keep your belongings in one place.
EAA AirVenture Oshkosh is a must see for all ages and we look forward to meeting you this year at the Cirrus Aircraft booth on Celebration Way.