I saw that at https://skyvector.com/ the VFR sectional charts were available for the USA only. Do other countries use the same format for sectional charts?

Additionally What does Lo and Hi mean at this website?

  • $\begingroup$ I don't see any difference between the USA-Charts and the Charts in Europe. $\endgroup$ Jun 2, 2017 at 15:59
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    $\begingroup$ As your question is currently written, it is too broad to produce any good answers. I could write books on "How do other countries manage their airspace?" - but that is not really the idea of this website. Please try to narrow down your question and be more specific. $\endgroup$ Jun 2, 2017 at 16:25
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    $\begingroup$ "Sectional" charts per se are a US government product produced by NOAA, iirc. Doesn't mean that there aren't VFR charts for everywhere else, just that they aren't exactly the same product/format/nomenclature as the US VFR Sectional charts. $\endgroup$
    – Ralph J
    Jun 2, 2017 at 18:31

1 Answer 1


The "hi" and "lo" represent en-route high altitude and en-route low altitude. The difference between the two is the transition altitude when switching from flying with reference to height to referencing altitude

The transition altitude varies from country to country (e.g. typically 18000 for the US and 3000 in the UK unless varied - 6000 in the London area for example) and can be found in various publications and on the en-route charts themselves.

The structure of airspace is consistent world-wide with some variations which are always marked on the relevant charts. There are far too many small variations to go into any detail here.

Finally, the charts themselves. Because the structure is consistent, the charts are also consistent although there are cosmetic differences such as the symbols used, colours used and certain pieces of useful information which may or may not be printed upon them. The differences are easy enough to learn quickly. I've flown VFR in the UK and the US and the charts look different, but are fundamentally the same. Within an individual country, charts may even differ cosmetically if the airspace is particularly busy when the chart makers may choose to omit less important information.

  • $\begingroup$ So can you fly VFR between USA and other countries if you are a VFR private pilot? $\endgroup$ Jun 2, 2017 at 20:22
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    $\begingroup$ Subject to license requirements , e.g., yes. Easy within Europe, trickier in Asia and if going from Europe to the USA. $\endgroup$
    – Simon
    Jun 2, 2017 at 20:32

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