Eurocontrol’s network manager operations center will stop processing repetitive flight plans (RPLs) from the end of March next year, after deeming it less relevant given the dynamic nature of today’s ATM network and a dwindling number of airlines that use it. While ten years ago some 40 percent of commercial flights in Europe and most of the continent’s large operators (including Air France, Ryanair, and EasyJet) filed RPLs, the number has gradually and significantly declined to approximately 3 percent now. Only 23 airlines still adhere to submitting RPLs twice a year, covering their schedules per IATA season. Of those, 21 are small airlines—some of them operating just two to three flights a week—and two are midsized airlines, Air France’s regional subsidiary HOP and Aeroflot. Jointly accounting for 65 percent of RPLs in Europe, both airlines now plan to follow their peers and switch to commercial flight-planning and navigation solutions providers, such as Lufthansa Systems and Jeppesen. “RPLs have served airlines’ needs well in the past. However, the ‘file-and-forget’ principle of an RPL and the concept of filing a flight plan on a route six months earlier than flying that rou...