Surf’s up in Europe


Surf Air, the California-based all-you-can-fly operator, has pulled out of Europe, after a brief year and a half of operations.

Bringing Surf Air’s membership program to Europe was always going to be a tough job, especially so using London as a start-up base.

The first flight operated between Luton Airport and Ibiza on Friday June 23 2017. Later, the company would switch its operations to London City and add Zurich to its network.

Its first Phenom 300, registered G-SRFA, was to be the first of a handful of the type Surf Air intended to operate in Europe. It was managed and flown on its behalf by Flexjet.

But by the end of June 2018 the Phenom 300 had left the fleet. Instead of using its own aircraft, Surf Air signed an agreement with Jetclass, which enabled its members to book seats on the flights that Jetclass had themselves chartered.

According to the latest data from WINGX, the business-aviation data company, business aircraft traffic has risen 2% in Europe so far in 2018.

It may just be because of winter, but Europe is feeling a little gloomy at the moment. Paris is set for more demonstrations this weekend, there is the rise of extremist politicians in many countries and in the UK a complete political vacuum caused by Brexit.