Whether you’re flying aboard your own aircraft, or using charter, fractional, lease, or jet card, you have made a significant investment in travel. You expect the very best service, both in the air and on the ground. Not only do you expect the best, you require it, because the time you save by flying aboard business aircraft can be lost via inefficient transitions from air to ground transportation.
The Fixed Base Operators (FBOs) at each airport are responsible for those transitions, as well as for any and all ground services that you, your aircraft, and your flight crew may need to complete your trip safely and efficiently: ground transportation arrangements, aircraft fueling, maintenance, deicing, hangar storage, and more.
More than 2,000 airports in the U.S. alone have runways capable of supporting business jet operations. Since many have multiple FBOs offering service, your flight crew and schedulers will select the one that best meets your specific air-to-ground transition requirements for that trip.
From the moment your car arrives at the FBO, some aspects of superior service will be quite noticeable, while others should not be apparent.
You Should Notice
- Privacy and anonymity. When you are boarding or deplaning your aircraft, the FBO staff should respect your privacy, and never engage in any conversations about your business or personal life, regardless of how often you use their facility. If you are a well-known public figure, they certainly should not approach you for autographs or photos.
- Aircraft catering that is complete to your exact specifications, and in full compliance with your and your passengers’ dietary requirements. The galley should be stocked with your preferred beverages, and the cabin with your favorite publications for inflight reading.
- Your car pulling up planeside as you arrive at your final destination, if requested prior to arrival, or hired car at your intermediate destination, appropriately equipped with GPS, baby seats, or other requirements.
- Facilities that are easily accessible and meticulously maintained. If you have planned a meeting at the FBO, a conference room will be reserved and ready with your audio visual needs, coffee, refreshments, and an onsite notary as required.
You Should Not Notice
- Security cameras scanning the ramp 24/7, ensuring the safety and security of your aircraft. At your home base airport, your car should be whisked away and parked in your hangar or a secure parking area, where again, you shouldn’t notice the security cameras scanning the lot around the clock.
- Training that supports every aspect of your interaction with FBO personnel, from safe fueling, aircraft towing and ground handling, to pleasant and efficient customer service, to line service technicians skilled in the refueling of more than 100 different business jet and turboprop makes and models.
- Safety officers on the ramp, watching every movement of every aircraft and monitoring fueling operations.
- The FBO staff on the phone, making your reservations for hotels, limo services, catering, or car rentals. You won’t notice your flight department’s calls to check on fuel price and parking fees, ensuring you are getting the best value.
- Emergency maintenance or required deicing performed if required before departure.
- Your flight department double checking, then triple checking every detail prior to your trip.
Each destination FBO becomes an extension of your own flight department. And your flight crew understands that for your travel to be smooth and efficient, they have to trust their chosen FBO to make your transition from air-to-ground travel seamless, safe, private, and secure. BAA
Sue Sommers brings more than 25 years of aviation industry experience to her position as VP Sales and Marketing at Atlantic Aviation, where she oversees brand management, marketing, sales initiatives, and customer development.