All flights carrying fare paying passengers in the UK must be carried out by an organisation holding an Air Operators Certificate (AOC). Sadly some individuals and organisations choose to ignore this fact and compromise passenger safety.
These flights are often sold as trial lessons or private flights and will generally look like a bargain. However, the rules covering these flights mean that the machine may not be maintained to public transport standards, the pilot may not be trained to public transport standards and the insurance (and your life cover) will not pay out should an accident occur.
These illegal flights have prompted the Civil Aviation Authority to issue a warning leaflet, an electronic copy of which can be downloaded here.
Rest assured that all public transport flights listed here are conducted by registered AOC holders, the aircraft used are maintained to AOC standards and pilots hold the appropriate qualifications and training.