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In a world like none we have seen before, the business aviation community has been a vital part of supporting commerce and healthcare in the new realities of COVID-19. As traditional airline options are diminishing, passengers can be stranded in various parts of the world.
“Business aviation is being used primarily for two purposes right now. One, essential flights serving commerce and trade to the benefit of our Canadian economy and two, repatriation, bringing Canadians home from abroad”, commented Anthony Norejko president and CEO of the Canadian Business Aviation Association (CBAA).
The business aviation option is certainly more expensive than a traditional airfare, but it offers a level of protection and security which certain scenarios require. The ability to avoid overcrowded airport terminals and travel with those you know is a significant advantage, especially for those with compromised health issues.
Business aviation operations have the ability to travel to all parts of the world and can access smaller centres that don’t have regular airline services.
“Our aircraft have been helping clients from all parts of the world,” noted Sulaiman Umar of London Air Services in Vancouver. “Which is challenging with the ever-changing local regulations in response to the Coronavirus situation. However, we are getting it done and are pleased to be able to support the safety and well-being of our fellow citizens.”
In addition, these operations can provide a level of sterilization and cleaning that is difficult in a larger aircraft.
“New clients are concerned about the quality of the air in a smaller aircraft like a business jet, but in fact, the cabin air is refreshed and filtered to provide a fresh cabin with mitigated risks, we have added all of the COVID-19 protocols as they come out. At this time, we are able to bring passengers that are Canadian citizens or permanent residents from the U.S., Mexico and the Caribbean, directly to any airport in Canada that has Canadian Customs available,”said Dylan Fast, CEO of Fast Air Ltd.
Running a business aviation operation requires a highly trained, committed and flexible team especially in a time like this.
“Flight crew, engineers and support staff have risen to the unprecedented challenge and overwhelming volume of repatriating Canadians during a time of need. It is remarkable how our segment of the industry, which is so often overlooked, has played an outsized role during the COVID-19 crisis. High praise to the on-demand charter operators and the men and women who are flying and maintaining these aircraft,” commented Chartright Air Group president Adam Keller.
“The business aviation community continues to play a vital role in supporting the prosperity and security of society and its hardworking members are proud of the vital role that they can play everyday, but especially in a time of crisis like the Coronavirus pandemic,” added Dan Rutherford Fast Air Ltd.