Aircraft Charter Demand Hits Plateau
Demand for aircraft charter flights appears flat going into this month, with the demand index generated by online charter portal Avinode standing at 93.03 today, less than one point above the 92.37 recorded on March 1. The index this month is five points below where it stood on April 1 last year at 98.09. At the same time, average charter flight hour rates (logged in euros) have also increased somewhat on both sides of the Atlantic. In North America, the average rate for a Citation Excel increased 4.3 percent to €2,390.60 ($3245), while the rate for a Hawker 800 was 4 percent up at €2,466.70 ($3,348) and a Challenger 604 was 4.4 percent up at €3,672.40 ($4,984). In Europe, the price increases for the same aircraft were slightly less, ranging from 2.2 percent for the Excel (€2,719.20), a 3.6-percent hike for the Hawker 800 (to €3,356.40) and 3.1 percent for a Challenger 604 (to €4,555.70). Avinode’s aircraft availability index for the seven days starting today appears to reflect a spike driven by charter customers taking Easter getaway breaks. Only 55.7 percent of the fleet included in the Avinode database was available for charter as of this morning, but availability for next week was about 70 percent.