Private jet company Elit’Avia says new charter clients helped the business achieve 6,615 flight hours last year – the company’s second busiest year since its foundation in 2006.
“Charter services grew thanks to new clients, who previously flew commercial business class, but opted for the additional safety of private aviation,” according to a statement from the company.
Demand for aircraft management services rose, as companies and HNWIs opted to operate aircraft exclusively for management teams, families and other small groups.
During 2020, Elit’Avia launched a specialised cargo transportation service. A high proportion of cargo flights were attributed to the transportation of medical supplies. Business aircraft proved well-suited to small shipments of lightweight supplies, such as facemasks, said the company. Also, business planes had the considerable advantage of being able to land on much shorter runways that are inaccessible to full-size cargo aircraft.
Another feature of last year was the company’s expansion of the company’s aircraft, crew, maintenance and insurance (ACMI) turnkey service for aircraft operators seeking immediate additional fleet capacity.
Michel Coulomb, Elit’Avia CEO, said the Covid-19 pandemic had highlighted the benefits of private aviation. “The more obvious benefits of private aviation during the pandemic include the ability to hand-pick your travel companions and the dramatically lower number of touch points on a typical private flight, versus commercial,” said Coulomb.
“Less obvious has been the increase in specialised cargo missions, including the delivery of medical supplies, which is rewarding work because it enables us to contribute directly to fighting the virus. 2020 was a difficult year and we are grateful to have found a measure of success in the face of overwhelming challenge,” he added.
Coulomb acknowledged Covid-19 has been very difficult for many in business aviation and thanked his team for “proposing creative solutions to rapidly-evolving needs”.
Meanwhile, Elit’Avia, founded in Ljubljana, Slovenia, provides business aircraft sales, leasing, charter, aircraft management and related services, including flight operations management, staff provisioning and Continuing Airworthiness Management Organisation. Headquartered in Luqa, Malta, the company also has offices in Ljubljana, and holds AOCs in both countries.
Michel Coulomb, Elit’Avia CEO, said Covid-19 had highlighted the benefits of private aviation.