Charter and Fractional
News and issues concerning the aviation charter and fractional-ownership industries and markets, including company announcements, regulations, new developments and labor issues.
There is no question that charter and fractional providers remain a key part of the world’s general aviation infrastructure, accounting for a significant amount of flying activity. Charter operators worldwide, especially in the U.S., are enabling owners to earn some revenue to offset costs, thus extending the useful life of older aircraft.
Anticipating several more years of suppressed demand for private aviation, NetJets Europe is seeking further voluntary redundancies from its pilot workforce. The fractional ownership and jet card provider is in consultation with its flight crews in the hope of avoiding compulsory layoffs, with some of the temporary payroll reduction measures it took in 2009 set to expire by the end of next year.
If past is prologue, expect an uptick in business aviation flight activity next March. That’s one of the conclusions drawn from an Argus Market Intelligence report released at the NBAA Convention. The report analyzes the last three years of the company’s TraqPak flight activity data, including its FlightView aircraft movement and JetNet aircraft ownership information.
Elliott Aviation (Booth No. 1706) announced at NBAA’12 yesterday that it has received an STC for installation of Mid-Continent Instruments and Avionics’s new MD302 Standby Attitude Module (SAM). The compact 1.6-pound unit provides attitude, altitude, airspeed and slip information. Elliott plans to offer the compact $10,600 unit to buyers of its Garmin G1000 upgrade for King Air turboprops. The installation should go smoothly as Elliott also announced at the show the completion of its 75th King Air G1000 installation.
Aircraft management, brokerage, charter and jet card provider TWC Aviation (Booth No. 5334) announced a new program providing six months of aircraft management at no charge for clients who purchase an aircraft through TWC.
Clay Lacy Aviation (Booth No. 2520) of Van Nuys, Calif. and Chicago’s Priester Aviation have announced a strategic alliance aimed at creating a nationwide service for management, charter, maintenance and all other aircraft services. Both companies will retain their independent brands while working to provide each other’s clients additional value wherever possible. Clay Lacy and Priester have a combined fleet of almost 100 managed aircraft throughout the U.S., 70 of them charter-ready.
Meridian Air Charter, based in Teterboro, N.J., is expanding its operations to the West Coast as part of a long-term plan to serve existing clients better, while developing its charter and aircraft management services in the San Francisco area. The two-phase expansion involves opening California sales offices in San Jose and at Sonoma County Airport in Santa Rosa. The San Jose office opened in September and the Santa Rose office is scheduled to open in November. In the second phase of its West Coast expansion, Meridian Air Charter (Booth No.
Aircraft management company and charter operator ExcelAire (Booth No. 1143) announced the addition of a fourth Embraer Legacy 600 to its charter rolls, giving the company the largest fleet of Legacy jets in the Northeast. The added Legacy and its crew will be certified to operate into and out of London City Airport midway through next year, adding to its appeal for transatlantic charters. “We pioneered the Legacy charter market in the U.S., and it has since become one of our most popular aircraft,” said David Rimmer, president of the Ronkonkoma, N.Y.-based company.
Arguably nowhere on earth is the business case for seaplanes more compelling than in the Indian Ocean archipelago of the Maldives with its 1,190 islands (200 of them inhabited). The scattered nation, situated 250 miles southwest of India, has the world’s largest fleet of de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otters, offering high-end tourists a time-saving alternative to the boat connections between its low-lying islands spread over 35,000 square miles.