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Newsletter - May 1st, 2013

The Votes Have Been Counted! Announcing the Winners of the 2013 Pilots' Choice Awards
We are excited to announce the winners of the 2013 Pilots' Choice Awards. With thousands of votes cast, the pilots have chosen their favorites in the following categories: Top U.S. FBOs, Top U.S. FBOs by region, Top FBO Chains, Top Canadian FBOs, Caribbean FBOs, Top Mexican FBOs, Top ATC Centers and more. We at FltPlan.com would like to thank all of you who voted. Congratulations to the winners. Click here for the 2013 Pilots' Choice Survey Results.



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New! Get Your Pre-Departure Clearance Online to your Email/Text Message Address
In our newest premium service, FltPlan.com now offers PDCs for Jet & Turbo Props that are NOT equipped with a datalink box on board their aircraft.
 
Pre-Departure Clearances (PDCs) are text clearances issued for an IFR flight plan. They are available at 70 airports throughout the U.S.
 
The PDC will include:
  • Your Filed Route
  • Any amendments to your route
  • Your Cleared Altitude
  • Your Transponder Code
  • Your Departure Frequency
  • Any Special Instructions

  •  
    Your PDC is equivalent to receiving a verbal clearance from Clearance Delivery. Unlike our Planned ATC Routes, the PDC is your ATC Clearance.
     
    With a PDC, you do not need to wait while some other aircraft is struggling to read back a full route clearance; you can go right to ground control, and bypass Clearance Delivery all together (Better yet, you won't be the guy struggling to read back the full route clearance.). You will also be doing your part to help frequency congestion at busy periods, saving you and the controllers valuable time.
     
    ATC generates the PDC approximately 25 to 30 minutes prior to the filed departure time. The PDC will then be forwarded to FltPlan.com. Once received, a PDC Available message will automatically be displayed on your Active Flight Plan List. The PDC can also be distributed to the Pilot and Co-Pilot via email addresses or text messages, as setup in your User/Pilot Info section. In order to receive your PDC clearance by email or text message, you MUST file the flight plan through FltPlan.com.
     
    For more information or to sign up for PDC notification through FltPlan.com, please Click here.

    FltPlan.com Mobile comes to Blackberry Playbook
    In our continuing effort to meet the needs of our pilots, FltPlan.com's popular free mobile app is now available to Blackberry Playbook users.
     
    Blackberry's new Blackberry 10 OS offers the ability to run Android applications right on the Playbook device. A specially built program on the Blackberry Playbook 10 called the "Android Runtime" allows Android Apps to run directly to the Blackberry device.
     


     
    Most of the features available on our Android App are available including:
  • Approach Charts
  • Airport/Facility Directory
  • NavLog/Wx and Document syncing
  • Weight and Balance program
  • eLogbook program
  • Location and Enroute Weather briefings
  • Flight tracking
  • Runway Wind Calculator
  • Fuel Conversion Calculator
  • Temperature Conversion

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    Our app is available from the Blackberry World App Store, Blackberry's own App-market. You can search for our app directly from your Playbook with the keyword "FltPlan". Or you can use the link below:
    http://appworld.blackberry.com/webstore/content/27783157/

    Latest Feature for our iPad APP: Runway Wind Calculator
    In our last newsletter we announced the Runway Wind Calculator for our Android app. It is now also available for iPad users.
     
    The Runway Wind Calculator allows you to quickly calculate the tailwind and crosswind components of a specific runway. Enter a runway number, a wind-from direction, and wind speed for an instant calculation. If you also have gusting winds, you can enter the speed for an additional calculation.
     
    There are two versions of the Runway Wind Calculator. The first is basic and requires to you enter the runway number. The second allows you to type in an airport ID and you'll be given the option between the available runways. As you adjust the wind speed and direction you can quickly view which runways have poor wind conditions, and which might be suitable for take-off/landing.

    New Enhancement to our SMS Program
    FltPlan.com continues to expand its convenient, full-featured SMS (Safety Management Systems) program for operators of jets and large aircraft. SMS is a standardized method of identifying/reporting hazards, assessing the associated probability and severity of the risks associated with the hazards, and creating procedures to mitigate the risks.
     
    For those unfamiliar with SMS, it is a systematic approach to managing the day to day hazards and risks associated with running a safe flight operation. It also sets into place a program that engages both management and employees in the quest to constantly improve the safety of their operation. One of the byproducts is that you will soon see that enhanced safety leads to a better quality operation and a cost benefit.
     
    FltPlan.com is a Support Services Affiliate of IS-BAO, with accredited auditors on staff for both IS-BAO and the Air Charter Safety Foundation (ACSF).
     
    Our latest enhancements Include:
  • The ability to print out a risk's history, comments, and corrective action in a convenient format
  • The ability to search current and past risks for common factors
  • The ability to export risks to an Excel spreadsheet for your own analysis

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    While some countries (Bermuda and Cayman Islands) are requiring operators of jet aircraft and aircraft over 12,500 pounds to have SMS, others are sure to follow. If you're not already implementing SMS, it might be a good time to start considering an SMS for your company (whether large or small). You can get more information by calling our special services office at 731-855-8000 between the hours of 8am and 5pm Eastern Time.

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    Lead Editor: Claire Warner - Claire@FltPlan.com
    Contributing Editor: David Wilson
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