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Commercial Operations Branch

Part 125 Operations


Flight Standards Information Management System (FSIMS) Volume 2, Chapter 6


Part 125 was issued to establish a uniform set of certification and operational rules for large airplanes having a seating capacity of 20 or more passengers or a maximum payload capacity of 6,000 pounds or more, when common carriage is not involved. These rules substantially upgrade the level of safety applicable to large airplanes formerly operated under Part 91.

Types of Operations (FSIMS Volume 2, Chapter 6, Section 1)

  • Noncommon carriage for hire operations are allowed, but must be reviewed carefully to verify that the operation is not common carriage. Operators are not permitted to “hold out” directly or indirectly.
  • Private Carriageoperations in which persons or cargo are transported without compensation for hire, for example, private or corporate operators carrying company personnel, property and guest, including cost sharing under 14 CFR § 91.501 (d), or historic (museum or collection) flight operations.
  • Operations not involving the transportation of persons or cargo.

Applicability of Part 125

  • Does the operator use an airplane with seating capacity (configuration) for 20 or more passenger seats or a maximum payload capacity of 6,000 pounds or more?
  • If the airplane has 20 or more passenger seats, Part 125 is applicable. However, the operator could reconfigure the airplane (remove the seats) so that it has a passenger seating capacity of 19 or less. In this situation, Part 125 would not be applicable, unless the calculated maximum payload capacity is 6,000 pounds or more.
  • Maximum payload capacity is defined in Section 125.9. If, through calculations in accordance with this definition, the maximum payload is determined to be 6,000 pounds or more, Part 125 is applicable regardless of the number of seats.

Application Process Part 125 (FSIMS Volume 2, Chapter 6, Section 2)

  • 2-678 – General
  • 2-679 – Preapplication
  • 2-680 – Formal Application
  • 2-681 – Document Compliance
  • 2-682 – Demonstration and Inspection
  • 2-683 – Certification


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