Front Page: Traficom
Front Page: Traficom

Commercial air transport requires an Air Operator Certificate (AOC), which has to be applied prior to the start of the operations. Commercial air transport (CAT) means an aircraft operation to transport passengers, cargo or mail for remuneration or other valuable consideration

In addition to the AOC, the commercial air transport organization shall hold an operating license issued by Traficom and a continuing airworthiness management organization approved by Traficom.

Requirements for commercial air transport with airplanes and helicopters are set out in Regulation (EU) 1139/2018 of the European Parliament and of the Council and Commission Regulation (EU) 965/2012 (Air Operations Regulation) and other implementing rules of the Basic Regulation.

The operational requirements for hot air balloons are to be found in national aviation regulation OPS M2-10. The new European rules will apply to hot air balloons for commercial operations in autumn 2019.

Application Process

When applying for an AOC, Traficom must be provided with all documentation demonstrating that the organization complies with the requirements of the Basic Regulation and its Implementing Rules. The application must be submitted to Traficom at least 90 days prior to the intended operation.

For airplanes and helicopters, you can apply for an AOC defined in ORO.AOC.100 using the EASA AOC Application Form. For hot air balloons, refer to OPS M2-10 (see Traficom> Legislation) for search instructions.

The AOC application processes may take from a few months to half a year, or even longer, due to the scale of the intended operation and related audit work. Often, organizations complete and develop their operational systems and manuals during the process, which can help lengthen the application process.

Practical cooperation between the Authority and the applicant usually begins with a kick-off meeting. The meeting is an information event in which both sides provide information on their own activities and policies. At the kick-off meeting, the applicant will present to Traficom representatives the results of the preparatory work, the types of operations envisaged, the organizational structure and the persons in charge, and possibly the aircraft and crew used.

At the initial meeting, a Traficom representative will inform the organization of a nominated auditor who will be responsible for coordinating and advancing the application process. The purpose of the meeting is to agree on the practical arrangements and timetable by which the applicant for the AOC will submit Traficom's management system manuals and operations manuals for review.


Management system of an Air Operator

Air operator must establish and maintain a management system, which includes clearly defined duties and responsibilities throughout the organization. Management system shall be in proportion to the size and nature of the operation. The following components should be included in the management system;

  • Description of general safety guidelines and principles (safety-policy) and the managing director`s direct responsibility of safety
  • Identification, assessment and management of aviation safety risks, which include the actions to mitigate the risks and verifying the effectiveness of these actions
  • Training and maintaining required qualification of personnel
  • Documentation of all essential processes of the management and;
  • Oversight method of compliance monitoring, with which ensures compliance with the latest applicable requirements

Different types of CAT-operations requires usually other special permissions in additions to operating license, which in turn adds more requirements to the management system. It is especially important to ensure that the organization with its management system is continuously improved and suitable for the operation the extent of which taken into account.


Personnel requirements

Organization shall have a responsible manager, who has the authority to ensure sufficient recouces and compliance with applicable regulations. Responsible manager is responsible for establishing and maintaining efficient management system. In addition to responsible manager organization shall have manager in charge of compliance monitoring, a safety manager and responsible persons for oversight that the following activities comply with applicable regulations;

  • Air operations
  • Crew training
  • Ground operations and;
  • Continuing airworthiness

Operations manual

Commercial air transport shall be conducted only in accordance with the operator's operations manual. The Operations Manual shall contain all necessary instructions, information and procedures for all aircraft used and for the performance of their duties. It shall specify flight time limitations, flight duty periods and rest periods for crew members.

The operations manual and its revisions must be compliant with the approved flight manual, and the operations manual must be amended as necessary.


Operating licence and financial capabilities

Admission and maintaining operating licence require a valid air operator certificate(AOC). Applicant of operating licence shall issue Traficom with financial statement defined in EU regulation…  Traficom will then assess the financial capabilities for the safe air operations and the solvency of the applicant. For example, the applicant must be able to demonstrate that it has the ability to operate without revenue for three months.



The air carrier must create and submit to Traficom for approval a security program describing how the provisions on civil aviation security are implemented. These regulations are contained in Traficom's national civil aviation security program. If necessary, Traficom will provide with additional information and guidance in developing a security program.



It is the operator's responsibility with its processes to ensure that the company complies with the conditions of AOC and operating license throughout the validity of them.

Traficom ensures that applicants for and holders of an AOC comply with the applicable requirements and that the appropriate safety measures prescribed by Traficom are complied with. Compliance verification shall be based on documentation, results of safety oversight, audits and inspections, as well as ramp inspections and unannounced inspections.


Admission of air operator certificate

Once Traficom is satisfied that the organization complies with the applicable requirements, the organization is granted an AOC with its associated operating conditions. The operating conditions shall specify the rights and scope of activities that the organization is authorized to conduct. The AOC is issued for an indefinite period.