With so many choices available to companies and individuals contemplating alternatives to airline travel, what’s a business owner or prospective flight department manager to do? Speakers at the fourth annual Conklin & de Decker Aircraft Acquisition Planning Seminar, held recently in Scottsdale, Ariz., sought to provide some answers to those questions.
Aviation International News » March 2005
The first Citation Mustang conforming prototype got its wings on the morning of February 3. Workers at Cessna’s Pawnee facility in Wichita mated the wing to the fuselage in a process that took less than 20 minutes, according to the company.
Waterford, Mich.-based Pentastar Aviation, the former corporate flight department of DaimlerChrysler purchased by Edsel B. Ford II in 2001, recently promoted Richard Barley to executive chef of its Fivestar Gourmet catering division. Barley oversees a staff of eight chefs and culinary apprentices to provide catering services for FBOs at five Detroit-area airports as well as for off-airport events.
Bombardier Aerospace director of Learjet products Brad Nolen told AIN that the company has extended indefinitely the Learjet 60 “complete package offer,” which it announced at the NBAA Convention in October. As such, the Canadian manufacturer will continue to include the package–valued at $288,000–at no extra charge to those buying a new Learjet 60.
GA groups generally welcomed the Senate confirmation of Judge Michael Chertoff to be Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, replacing Tom Ridge, who resigned. But his positions on general aviation are still unknown.
General aviation was heartened somewhat last month when the federal government reopened the “DC-3” airports to limited “transient” traffic.
The Farnborough Air Show is to retain its seven-day format, but it will now consist of just three full trade days along with a new “industry day” and an “exhibitor family day,” in addition to the traditional two public days.
Taking a quasi-Southwest Airlines approach, Cleveland-based fractional provider Flight Options last month announced a “go-forward” plan to rationalize its fleet over the next three to five years with the goal of simplifying operations, increasing fleet reliability and reducing overall costs. The move is a big gamble, however, since roughly half of the company’s shareowners are up for renewal in the next 18 months.
In a business world where a niche market may be the key to success, PlaneSense has apparently found both niche and success, operating a fractional ownership fleet composed solely of PC-12 turboprop singles and serving the U.S. Eastern Seaboard.
Construction of the new FlightSafety International (FSI) Learning Center at Farnborough Airport in the UK neared completion last month. The first of up to 14 flight simulators have arrived and are due to be installed over the next few weeks, with a view toward seating students for the first training sessions in May and June.