Burner Express Air FAQ

Q. What is Burner Express Air?

A. Burner Express Air is an air carrier service program that will transport Burners from Reno, the San Francisco Bay Area, Southern California, and other locations to Black Rock City and back. This program is part of our ongoing efforts to reduce traffic and make air travel more accessible and affordable and maintain a high level of safety of the Burning Man event. Burner Express Air is intended to make it easier for participants to make flight bookings and streamline operations at the Black Rock City Airport for passengers, air carriers, and general aviation enthusiasts.

Q: How does it work?

A. Burning Man has contracted with Advantage Flight Solutions, LLC (AFS) to operate  the Burner Express Air program and arrange flight bookings for participants with the carriers providing Burner Express Air flights. AFS is a Burner-owned and operated company that launched the first charter flights to Black Rock City in 2005.

In 2016, Burner Express Air will be the only provider of charter flight services to and from Black Rock City (except for private charters that fly in one time to drop off passengers and one time to pick them up). If you have already booked flights to Burning Man, please contact your air carrier to confirm they are participating in the Burner Express Air program.

You must have a Burning Man ticket or other valid entry credential to enter Black Rock City. Burners will board aircraft at Reno, Oakland, San Carlos, Burbank, and other airports with their luggage. Participants will then proceed via airplane to the Black Rock City Airport, bypassing highway congestion and road delays.

Q. How do I get my event ticket that is at Will Call?

A. Will Call tickets will be available for pick up at the Box Office at the BRC Airport. The Will Call ticket must be in your name. If you have a low income, fire conclave or other event ticket you need to pay for, you will be able to do so with a Visa or Mastercard only. No cash will be accepted. Staff credentials will also be available at the BRC Airport Box Office.

Q. What are the baggage allowances and weight restrictions?

A. Baggage is limited to the weight and size restrictions of the aircraft as well as FAA regulations. This is extremely important. One piece of baggage is included at no extra charge.

Each passenger is allowed his/her own weight + one piece of baggage not to exceed 25 pounds. That baggage cannot exceed the size of a commercial airline carry-on with the maximum dimensions of 24 inches x 14 inches x 9 inches, and should not weigh more than 25 pounds. Soft sided and/or duffel bags are strongly recommended.

Additional bags and/or weight may be accommodated at extra charge, subject to aircraft weight and balance limitations. Any bags in excess of 25 pounds must be arranged in advanced or your bag could be delayed or not allowed to fly. These are small aircraft, not 747s.

Burner Express Air passengers who weigh more than 250 pounds require special accommodation. AFS will do its best to safely accommodate such passengers. If you weigh more than 250 pounds, please contact AFS in advance to make necessary arrangements. Extra charges apply.

It is the responsibility of each individual passenger to abide by the combined weight and baggage limits or make other arrangements prior to traveling.

Passengers and their baggage will be weighed prior to any flight. Air carriers reserve the right, without refund, to remove a passenger or their baggage from flight due to non-compliance with the weight guidelines.

Please do not transport any illegal or prohibited materials in your luggage. Burner Express Air is subject to the same rules as all vehicles entering Black Rock City. Transporting hazardous materials is prohibited.

Q. Will I be charged an oversize baggage fee if my baggage is too large?

A. Sometimes Burner Express Air will be able to accommodate oversize baggage by special advance arrangements (and extra baggage fees), depending on the size of the aircraft and weight and balance restrictions. Unlike commercial airliners, Burner Express Air cannot accommodate oversize baggage except by special advance arrangement. If your baggage is too large to fit in the plane, you will not be allowed to bring it with you.

There is no baggage storage at the check-in locations.

Q. How much time should I allow between an airline flight and flights to/from Black Rock City?

A. Connections between airline flights and Burning Man charters are not guaranteed in either direction.

From the airlines in Reno to Burning Man, we recommend at least 90 minutes for domestic flights from the time you are scheduled to arrive on a domestic flight to get your bags, take a taxi across the airport to the charter terminal, and check in for your playa flight.  If your airline flight is delayed and you’re headed for the playa, you may not make it to the playa by air that day.

From the playa to the airlines, we recommend at least three hours between your arrival back at Reno and your airline departure time.  If there are any weather or operational delays on the Playa, you may be delayed arriving back in Reno.

Allow similar amounts of time for Oakland and Burbank airports, where aircraft land at charter terminals, not the airline terminals.  To travel to or from the airfield at San Carlos and SFO/San Francisco International Airport, allow additional time for the trip by taxi or other means of transport.  While the distance between San Carlos and SFO is only 10.5 miles, there is often heavy traffic along the route.

Q. What if I miss my flight?

A. Burner Express Air will do its best to accommodate you as a priority standby on the next available flight. Burning Man, AFS, and Burner Express Air carriers have no responsibility or liability for missed flights.

Q. How much time should I allow to check in for my flight to/from Black Rock City?

A.  Please check in at least 45 minutes before your flight.

Allow extra time for flights departing Black Rock City on the last Sunday and Monday of the event. You and your luggage will be weighed, and after all passengers are present, manifests and weight/balance sheets will be prepared in accordance with FAA regulations.  If you are not checked in 30 minutes before your scheduled departure, you may not be accommodated on the flight.

Q. What documentation am I required to present on check-in?

A. All passengers are required to present valid, legal, unexpired, government-issued photo identification. For US citizens, that usually means either a passport or a driver’s license. For non-US citizens, that usually means a passport.

Passengers traveling to Burning Man need to produce a valid Burning Man ticket, entry credential, or order confirmation for a will-call ticket.

Passengers traveling to Burning Man before Saturday, August 26, need to produce a valid bar-coded Early Arrival pass.

If Burning Man Gate staff determine that you do not have a valid ticket or valid entry credential, Burning Man requires that a Burner Express Air carrier transport you back to Reno or your point of origin.

Q. When is my flight considered booked?

A. Flights will be considered confirmed and booked once payment is received and has been processed.

Q. Can I change my flight once it has been booked?

A. Yes. Flights may be changed after booking. Prior to August 1, there is a $100 fee per change once the flight has been paid for.  After August 1, the change fee increases to $200. Changes are subject to flight availability.

Q. Can I book a one-way trip?

A. Yes, absolutely.  You may book a one-way or a round-trip ticket for travels to or from Black Rock City.

Q. What are the Black Rock City Airport passenger use fees this year?

A. All passengers arriving at Black Rock Airport must pay a Burning Man airport use fee of $60 per person, payable by VISA, Mastercard (preferred). Cash is a good back-up plan in case of problems with credit cards.

Q. How do I get from the Black Rock City Airport into the City/my camp and back?

A. Included in the $60 passenger service fee is passage to and from BRC Airport on an Airport Shuttle bus. These buses will depart regularly during Airport operating hours.

Mutant vehicles visit Airport many times during daylight hours. They don’t operate on a set schedule, so your best bet is to have your camp mates arrange for a mutant vehicle to come get you and your baggage.  

You can always walk, but. . . that’s a long way, particularly if you have baggage.

Coming back from your camp to the Airport, make sure you have arranged a reliable way to get back, particularly for early morning flights. (Mutant vehicles are very scarce around dawn.) Burner Express Air is scheduling Airport Shuttle buses making trips to the airport during Exodus; stay tuned for more information.

Q. How do I contact Burner Express Air during the event?

A. Please stop by the big tent at Atlantic Aviation in Reno or the Burner Express Air check-in facility at the Black Rock City Airport, where Burner Express Air representatives will be working during scheduled hours of BRC Airport operation.

Alternatively, email and phone messages are checked periodically for messages sent outside of working hours for callers unable to get through due to high call volume.  For reservations and other questions, call 775-852-3512 or email burners16@nulladvantageflight.com.

Q. What happens if I’m late for my flight?

A. Burner Express Air carriers will not hold flights for late passengers. Air carriers will attempt to accommodate you on a standby basis on the next available flight. There are no refunds if you miss your flight.
Q. Can I bring my bicycle with me?

A. Not usually. Burner Express Air strongly recommends collaborating with your campmates to transport bikes to and from Black Rock City through other means. You can also work to pre-arrange access to a bicycle through groups that provide this service. Exceptions may be made for special needs and ADA. There are some pre-arranged bicycle rentals available through theme camps that may be picked up at the Black Rock City Airport. Stay tuned for more info via the Jackrabbit Speaks.

Q. Can I bring an ice chest with me on the flight?

A. If it’s the size of a carry-on that can fit under the seat of an airliner — maximum dimensions of 24 inches x 14 inches x 9 inches, and weighing not weigh more than 25 pounds — and it’s your only piece of baggage, yes.  If not, most likely not, depending on the aircraft capacity and other passenger baggage.

Burner Express Air cannot accommodate large ice chests. (Remember, you can always buy ice at Burning Man.)  

Q. What about oversized items?

A. Burner Express Air can only accommodate oversize items on a case by case basis. Please contact AFS (email burners16@nulladvantageflight.com or call 775-852-3512) to discuss cost and availability.

Q. Do you have options for shipping cargo?

A. Yes, subject to aircraft capacity, advance arrangements may be made for cargo in various sizes and weights. Burner Express Air can ship time-critical equipment (“you forgot what?!”), supplies, tires, keys, and other important items! Please contact AFS(email burners16@nulladvantageflight.com or call 775-852-3512) to discuss cost and availability.

Q. Can I pay to bring more luggage by air?  Or by ground?

A.  Yes, subject to aircraft capacity, air travelers may arrange for additional baggage in various sizes and weights.  Please contact AFS (email burners16@nulladvantageflight.com or call 775-852-3512) to make arrangements.

Q: Where do I check in for my BRC flight departing from Black Rock City Airport?

A. Please check in at the Burner Express Air departure terminal, which is a giant turquoise tent structure. You and your luggage will be weighed, and you’ll be checked in for your flight. Please note that the many very helpful Black Rock City Airport volunteers do not work for Burner Express Air. Look for Burner Express Air staff wearing turquoise hats.

Q. Where do I check in for my BRC flight departing from Reno?

A. Burner Express Air operates out of Atlantic Aviation on the East side of Reno/Tahoe International Airport at 655 S Rock Blvd, Reno, NV 89502.  Please look for the Burner Express Air signs to check in.

Atlantic Aviation is not the commercial airline terminal. All charter aviation is located on the opposite side of the airport. We recommend using a taxi or rideshare service to travel from the airport terminal to Atlantic Aviation.

Atlantic Aviation no longer allows Burning Man passengers in its facility, in part due to the dust tracked in over the years. All Burning Man flights will arrive and depart from the large tent located adjacent and immediately to the North of their building.

Q. Where do I check in for my BRC flight departing from Oakland Airport?

A. In the East Bay, Burner Express Air flights operate from the Kaiser Oakland FBO, 8735 Earhart Road, Oakland, CA 94621. This is not the commercial airline terminal. Please look for the Burner Express Air signs to check in.  More details about where to find Burner Express Air Oakland will be available on AFS’s flight-booking website.

Q. Where do I check in for my BRC flight departing from San Carlos Airport?

A. On the San Francisco peninsula, Burner Express Air flights operate from San Carlos Airport General Aviation Building, 620 Airport Drive, San Carlos, CA 94070. This congestion-free airport is 10.5 miles south of San Francisco International Airport (SFO). Please look for the Burner Express Air signs to check in.

Q. Where do I check in for my BRC flight departing from the Palo Alto Airport?

A. At Palo Alto Airport, Burner Express Air flights operate from the Palo Alto Terminal, 1925 Embarcadero Road, Palo Alto CA 94303.

Your departure from Palo Alto will be called by the flight crew, who will weigh you and your baggage, check you in, verify that you have Burning Man tickets or order confirmation numbers, and escort you to your flight.

Q. Where do I check in for my BRC flight departing from Burbank Airport?

A. In Southern California, Burner Express Air flights operate from Burbank Airport at the Atlantic Aviation Charter Terminal located at 10750 Sherman Way, Burbank, CA 91505. This is not the commercial airline terminal.

Your departure from Burbank will be called by the flight crew, who will weigh you and your baggage, check you in, verify that you have Burning Man tickets, entry credentials or order confirmation numbers, and escort you to your flight.

Q. Do I have to go through TSA security prior to boarding my flight?

A. No. Charter passengers are not subjected to TSA screening prior to boarding your Burner Express Air flights.  However, plan to endure this if you are transferring to another commercial flight at a connecting airport.

Q.  Is there a 3-ounce liquid rule?

A.  No. Air charter passengers are not subject to the 3-ounce liquid restrictions found on airlines. However, no hazardous materials may be transported to or from Black Rock City.

Q.  Are there baggage inspections?

A. Charter Air Carriers reserve the right to inspect any and all baggage accepted for transport. Passengers refusing to allow their baggage to be inspected will be refused to board the aircraft with no refunds.

Q.  When do Burner Express Air online bookings end?

A.  TBA

Q.  Can unaccompanied minors travel on Burner Express Air flights?

A.  No. Unaccompanied minors (under age 16 as of the date of travel) are not allowed to travel on Burner Express Air flights. Parents or legal guardians must travel with minors under the age of 16.

Q.  Can I arrange Burner Express Air as part of a package tour or concierge service?

A:  In keeping with Burning Man’s Ten Principles, including Radical Self-Reliance and Decommodification, concierge service providers are not permitted to operate at the Burning Man event. Groups that provide all-inclusive travel packages, tours, or concierge services, as well as service provider-produced camps, are also prohibited. For more information, please see this post on Burning Man’s website: http://burningman.org/event/camps/turnkey-camping/.

Q. What happens if circumstances arise beyond the control of Burner Express Air?

A: Dust storms, extreme weather, lost child alerts, and mechanical issues have all been known to close airports and airspace and/or delay aircraft during the time of the event. While these events don’t happen very often, they do happen. We will do our best to accommodate you in these events, but we cannot make any guarantees for circumstances beyond our control.

Q. What do I do about trash when departing?

A: Once you purchase your Burner Express Air flight, you will receive information about the trash and recycling program. Plan to reduce your amount of waste as much as possible and follow the Leave No Trace Principle.

Q. What about water?

A: Participants traveling on Burner Express Air will be able to pre-purchase up to 20 gallons of water through the Burner Express Air program. Water must be purchased before arrival on playa.  Once on playa, air travelers will be able to collect their water at the Black Rock City Airport. Water will NOT be sold on Playa; all water purchases must occur prior to arrival.

Q. What is the process for lost and found?

A. Anything found or left on Burner Express Air will be taken to BRC’s Lost and Found location at Playa Info in Center Camp.

Q.  Do I need an Early Arrival Pass?

A.  Everyone arriving prior to the Event opening on August 27th will need an Early Arrival pass, unless you are arriving on Burner Express Air.  If you arrive on Burner Express Air on August 26th, you will not need an early arrival pass. 

Q.  What’s the estimated travel time to Black Rock City?

A. Travel times vary slightly by aircraft type and other operational factors. For flights from Reno, expect approximately 40 to 45 minutes; from Oakland, 90 minutes; from San Carlos, around an hour and 45 minutes; and from Burbank, between two and two and a half hours.

Q.  If I have a theme camp or a group of friends who want to travel together, can I charter a whole plane for us?

A:  Absolutely! Whole aircraft charters can be arranged from the cities listed above and other airfields, nonstop from the western states and one stop from anywhere else in the US.  Please contact AFS (email burners16@nulladvantageflight.com or call 775-852-3512) to make arrangements.

Q.  If I have a plane I’d like to charter and fly into Burning Man, what do I do?

A:  Please contact AFS (email burners16@nulladvantageflight.com  or call 775-852-3512) to make arrangements.

Q. I am a private pilot and I’d like to fly my plane into Burning Man, does this affect that?

A. No. Please refer to the 88NV website for more information.

Q. I am a charter company and I would like to bring passengers to Burning Man, does this affect that?

A. Yes.  Please contact AFS (email burners16@nulladvantageflight.com  or call 775-852-3512) to make arrangements.

Q.  What if I have a question about Burner Express Air service that is not answered here?

A.  You can reach AFS at burners16@nulladvantageflight.com  or 775-852-3512.