FBOs Reap Big Game Bounty

 - February 5, 2020, 10:48 AM
The NFL championship game played this year in Miami attracted its usual flock of business jets. At Miami Opa-locka Executive Airport, aircraft line a taxiway designated for overflow parking near the Fontainebleau Aviation ramp.

The Super Bowl LIV on Sunday in Miami resulted in a win not only for the Kansas City Chiefs, but also for the FBOs at area airports, due to the event’s customary influx of business aircraft. AIN reached out to the service providers to see what kind of traffic they encountered.

Signature Flight Support noted the bulk of its game-related traffic was at Miami International (MIA), which saw 290 arrivals including three 747s, four 757s, and an A319; Miami Opa-Locka Executive Airport (OPF) recorded 130 arrivals, and its other area locations such as Miami Executive (TMB) and Fort Lauderdale International (FLL) Airports logged 70 arrivals. The BBA subsidiary brought in 75 staffers from other locations to help with the crush. Reliance Aviation at TMB said it had 40 aircraft on its ramp during the weekend.

Sheltair had more than 300 movements at FLL during the slot period starting Wednesday, January 29, to Monday, February 3. “We could have certainly have handled more if we had not been restricted by the slot program,” said Karen Kroeppel, the company’s director of sales and marketing. “We did bring in additional staff from other Florida locations for a total of 20.” That number included workers from the company’s Tampa Bay-area locations to gain experience ahead of next year’s championship game in Tampa.    

Also at FLL, Jetscape hosted 72 aircraft—predominantly large business jets—over the weekend and added five staffers through its Air Elite network connections for extra support. At nearby Fort Lauderdale Executive, Banyan Air Service saw 800 operations between Friday and Monday, with a peak of 140 aircraft (mostly jets) on the ground. Like most locations, it reported the largest number of arrivals on Friday, while Monday saw a mass exodus, according to Jon Tonko, Banyan's director of customer support.

Atlantic Aviation reported handling more than 400 aircraft at its OPF and Boca Raton (BCT) locations during the implementation of the PPR slot system, with an additional 350 aircraft (mostly jets) at its Palm Beach International (PBI) and Stuart Witham Field (SUA) locations, which also experienced an influx of Super Bowl-related traffic. According to an Atlantic spokesperson, many of those customers purposely endured the Presidential TFR rather than contend with the PPR system.

Fontainebleau Aviation at OPF said it received 300 arrivals with an average of seven passengers per aircraft and sold approximately 300,000 gallons of jet-A through Monday. “With all hands on deck it has taken our group of 80, great energy, and dedication to keep going,” said v-p Bobby Courtney. “I am proud of the flawless execution from our group and thank the Miami Dade Aviation Department and our fuel provider, Phillips 66, for their tremendous support.”