Jeddah, Saudi Arabia-based National Air Services (NAS) has ordered five Airbus A318 Elites, a 15-seat, luxury version of the 100-seat-class airliner. In an announcement made during the first Middle East Business Aviation Conference here in Dubai yesterday, the operator also optioned five more of the twinjets.
Charter and Fractional » Charter
News and issues concerning the aviation charter industry and markets, including company announcements, regulations, new developments and labor issues.
Dubai airport-based Elite Jets is marking its first anniversary here at the Dubai airshow by exhibiting alongside Raytheon Aircraft (Stand E501). Recent news from the private charter operator includes the delivery of a second owned Hawker 1000 business jet, an agreement with a tour operator and a block-booking contract with independent aircraft charter broker International Air Charter (IAC).
The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) has published two new documents dealing with international transportation of minors and with illegal charters. The association recommends that on-demand charter operators provide both publications to new and existing clients.
Abu Dhabi-based business aircraft operator Royal Jet yesterday signed up as an operator for Bombardier’s Skyjet International fixed-rate charter service. Customers will have access to Royal Jet’s newly delivered Challenger 300 business jet and to the rest of its fleet if it is not available. In the future, any new a Bombardier business aircraft added to Royal Jet’s fleet will become part of Skyjet.
Flight planning and VIP air charter service provider Jetex Flight Support is applying for an air operator’s certificate (AOC) from Dubai’s General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA). The local company so far operates six aircraft, all based in Bucharest, Romania. Jetex started operations in April this year.
Dubai-based Eastern Skyjets has received a United Arab Emirates air operator’s certificate, enabling it to develop its charter business with a locally registered aircraft. For the past 18 months it has been flying a South African-registered Cessna Citation Eagle jet under a special exemption.
An undisclosed Saudi Arabian company has ordered a VIP-configured Airbus A340-200. The aircraft, renowned as the world’s longest commercial airliner, is to be delivered green by the end of 2006 and sent for outfitting to an s-yet-unannounced completions center. Jeddah-based National Air Services will operate the A340 on behalf of he client. NAS already flies a fleet of VIP A320 jetliners, including one for the same customer.
Amman, Jordan-based executive charter operator Arab Wings has taken delivery of a new Cessna Citation XLS jet. The first aircraft of its type in the Middle East, the XLS has joined a fleet that already consists of a Bombardier Challenger 604 and a Raytheon Beech King Air 200. The aircraft fly out of Amman’s downtown Marka International Airport to points within the Middle East and into Europe.
Charter operator Bahrain Executive Air Services Co. (Bexair) is announcing the launch of a new aircraft financing operation here at the show. The firm plans to provide business aircraft handling services at an undisclosed Middle Eastern airport, as well as for new passenger shuttle and cargo operations.
The rapid growth of Abu Dhabi-based executive charter group Royal Jet paints a vivid illustration of the pace of business aviation expansion in the Middle East. The company started life just two years ago with a single Boeing Business Jet and its fleet has since grown by three more BBJs, two Gulfstream 300s and a Bombardier Challenger 300.