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6 Answers

Charitable Organization

Asked by: 2247 views , ,
FAA Regulations, General Aviation, Private Pilot

I am a new Private Pilot (a little less than 100 hours) and have been asked by a family member to help out their non-profit organization by donating a plane tour.  I dug into the FARs and came up with FAR Section 91.146.  This has two stipulations that I am concerned about:

  1. 25 nm radius of flight
  2. 500 hours of logged flight time

I have two questions...

  1. I have been to auctions for charitable organizations where a flight much longer than 25 nm was sold.  Was this a violation of the FAR?
  2. If I don't accept reimbursement for my time (I donate the entire flight), do I have to conform to the two rules listed above?


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6 Answers

  1. Best Answer

    Mark Kolber on Jul 15, 2014

    1. Maybe. It is going to depend on who is offering the flight. As an example, some years ago, we bid on and won a trip to England, including airfare. United Airlines wasn’t relying on 91.146 in donating two round trip tickets.

    2. Yes. There’s nothing in 91.146 that says it applies only when the pilot is receiving some sort of compensation. Keep in mind that this is an exception to the general rule in 61.113 that prohibits two different things: (a) private pilots receiving compensation and (b) private pilots acting as PIC on a flight that is for compensation. You not receiving reimbursement deals with (a), but the charity is still receiving compensation in the form of the donations making it a violation of (b) unless the 91.146 rules are followed.

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  2. Nibake on Jul 15, 2014

    Mark, am I missing something here or shouldn’t the PIC have at least 500 hours in any case?

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  3. Nibake on Jul 15, 2014

    Also, by “donate” do you mean that you would be paying all the expenses? If so it seems that you would be acting as a private pilot and the organization would be at fault…?

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  4. Eric Thompson on Jul 15, 2014

    Nibake, yes, I would be paying all the expenses of the flight. I am donating my time and the Direct Operating Costs of using the airplane.

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  5. Mark Kolber on Jul 16, 2014

    Nibake, yes, of course. That what following the 91.146 rules means. Or did I misunderstand your question?

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  6. Nibake on Jul 16, 2014

    No, that is what I was asking, it makes sense now, I just was wondering why you didn’t address the 500 hours rule, but I see now that you mentioned 91.146 at the end.

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