O Canada!

As winter thaws into spring and summer, some pilots may wish to fly their LSAs north into Canada. Now, thanks to our good friends at EAA, American pilots may finally do so. After a nearly two-year negotiation, America’s neighbor to the north finally views LSA to be as airworthy as a homebuilt experimentals. Northbound pilots must still have an FAA medical and a private license or higher, but at least prior authorization from Mother Canada and a $100 fee were dropped.

The relaxation of some rules is the result of efforts by folks like EAA’s government relations director, Randy Hansen. Earlier, LSA pilots were required to call Transport Canada and receive authorization to operate a LSA in the country, obtain a validation form that had to remain in the aircraft, plus pay a $100 fee. “Now LSA owners simply have to download the form and follow customs requirements. The $100 fee has been eliminated,” said Hansen. “Discussions for making the change began at AirVenture 2008.” Transport Canada — roughly equivalent to FAA — continues to refuse entry to American Sport Pilot certificate holders using their state driver’s licenses as evidence of medical fitness. “But we’re working on that, too,” Hansen concluded.

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