Fly Neighborly Program

Santa Monica Airport’s Fly Neighborly Program outlines responsibilities, assesses needs, and mitigates noise impacts as much as possible.  The program contains a set of voluntary procedures that help pilots avoid sensitive areas and reduce the impact of aircraft operations on the community.

The City is often preempted by Federal law from establishing new or stricter local ordinances that would restrict aircraft operations and the use of airspace around the Santa Monica Airport. However, the City’s Airport Noise Code was grandfathered in and remains one of the strictest in the Country.

These recommended procedures are proven to mitigate noise, but are not intended to interfere with FARs, ATC instructions, or pilot-in-command safety priorities including weather avoidance:

Voluntary Night Arrival Curfew.  Pilots are requested to avoid operations between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m. Monday through Friday, or until 8 a.m. on weekends. Mandatory enforcement is disallowed by federal law.

Visual Flight Rules (VFR) Departure Flight Paths.  Aircraft departures to the west are requested to overfly the length of the Penmar Golf Course and initiate northerly turns at the shoreline, or southerly turns at Lincoln Boulevard. Departures to the east are requested to initiate crosswind turns over the 405 Freeway.

Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) Limitations.  Many jet aircraft utilize APUs to provide electricity to aircraft systems prior to, or after a flight. Pilots are requested to limit APU use to thirty minutes.  Additionally, the APU is considered an engine start and shall comply with the Airport’s curfew restrictions.

Reverse Thrust Use.  Due to the ground noise generated by aircraft utilizing reverse thrust upon landing, the Airport recommends minimum reverse thrust use except as necessary for safety, particularly during the nighttime hours.

IFR Engine Start Procedures.  To minimize ground delays between engine-start and takeoff, fixed wing turbine aircraft shall obtain approval from Air Traffic Control prior to starting up engines.

Helicopter Arrival Procedures. The Letter of agreement between the City of Santa Monica and the FAA reflects the Airport Working Group’s recommendation to route helicopters approaching Santa Monica Airport from the north or south at or above 900', and approach to land perpendicular to the runway heading.