Chase Larabee, creator of the AllFBO Web site, has added a new Web-based platform called Pilotaway.com that allows pilots and dispatchers to make reservations with any FBO in the U.S. While AllFBO was targeted toward FBOs, Pilotaway is for FBO users and will be supported by advertising so users wonít have to pay for it. FBOs will be able to pay for premium listings and services. Pilotaway has also signed an integration deal with Priceline so users can book hotels and rental cars through the system.
Larabee says he is familiar with other FBO reservation systems and doesn't believe they are focused on helping pilots and dispatchers get their needs across. "We spent time and countless dollars on the form," he said, which is more than a simple contact form and includes detailed information about the aircraft, fuel needs, hotel, ground transportation and other requirements.
After making a reservation, Pilotaway sends a complete trip itinerary to the user and the FBO. "Nothing gets mishandled if they both have the same piece of paper," he said, "so there is no question about the reservation." This is helpful, too, when a pilot makes a reservation for a West Coast FBO before an early-morning departure from the East Coast. "The FBO will see the reservation when it [opens]," he said. To back up the system, Pilotaway staffers will notify the pilot if the FBO doesnít respond to the reservation, to make sure the pilot and FBO are communicating. Users will be able to store aircraft, crew, passenger, catering and other information on Pilotaway to avoid having to re-enter it for every trip. "It's a resource for the users," said Larabee. "FBOs will love it because weíre not taking away their face time with the [customers]."