Our Group Charter team have had a busy 2019, supporting on a range of flights, anything from one off flights for events, corporate shuttle programmes to complex multi-stop flight series. The team are well versed in supporting clients across a variety of industries and understanding the intricate needs of the different clients that we work with.
Here we speak with some of our expert Account Managers from the team to understand how they have been working with clients over the past year.
MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences, events)
Nicola Cooper, Senior Account Manager
What trends are you seeing for event flights recently?
There has been a gradual shift in the MICE industry towards more experiential events and we are supporting our clients in getting creative with customising their flights. Our bespoke range of branding solutions can add to the experiential element, both on the ground and in the air. This can be anything from branding the headrest covers to showcasing a client's logo on the exterior of the aircraft. We recently worked with a client who was planning an incentive for 1,000 of their employees and wanted to keep the destination a secret. We were able to assist with customised check-in screens which stated "mystery destination", a personalised on-board announcement and bespoke headrest covers which hinted at the destination.
Which destinations are proving to be popular with clients for events?
During the winter season so far, we have seen a lot of interest in flights to the Canary Islands. With a flight time of around 4 hours from London and mild temperatures, they are ideal for clients planning incentives. Last summer, Lisbon, Majorca and Malaga have all been popular and we are already seeing interest in these destinations for summer 2020. For our automotive clients, southern Europe remains popular all year-round destination, owing to its good infrastructure and ambient weather conditions.
Sam Castle, Account Manager
How is Air Partner preparing for the Euro 2020 tournament?
This year’s UEFA Euro tournament is unique in that it’s the first to be held across a variety of countries in Europe. There will be limited amount of scheduled flights operating between the destinations, therefore charter remains the best way to access the different destinations, by offering a host of time saving benefits. At Air Partner, we have prepared by taking on some dedicated narrow and wide body aircraft that only our clients will have exclusive access to in the market. This should really add value to our customers, by giving them the flexibility to access all host cities at a time that suits them.
What trends are you seeing in sports flights recently?
We’ve been working with clients across the full spectrum of the industry, organising flights for teams, corporates and supporters. Football remains key for us as since 2017, we have flown over 30,000 passengers and over 50 teams for football related flights. However, we have also seen increased interest from basketball and rugby teams looking to fly privately. In terms of flights themselves, teams are looking to customise the experience further and ensure players travel in complete comfort, arriving well rested and ready to play. Specifically, we have seen an increase in clients chartering VIP aircraft for teams. Bespoke catering also remains popular to ensure players’ nutritional needs are catered for.
Will Taylor, Account Manager
How have you been assisting corporate clients recently?
As ever, the requirements from our corporate clients remain as varied as the industries we work with. We have been particularly busy organising flights for meetings and groups of employees attending conferences to a wide variety of destinations globally. Shuttle programmes also remain popular and we have been assisting with both short term and long-term solutions. For one key client, we have put in place a shuttle operating Monday-Thursday between three locations – two in the UK and one in France. This shuttle will be operating 28 sectors every week for the duration of the contract.
Which aircraft are popular with corporate clients?
We are well versed in working within the guidelines of travel policies that many of our corporate clients have to ensure the aircraft fits with requirements. Specifically points such as the age of the aircraft, or number of flying hours of the pilot – we have experience in working with operators to ensure that all requirements can be taken into consideration. Boeing 737-800 has been the popular aircraft choice with our corporate clients recently, accommodating up to 189 passengers and a range of up to 7 hours.
No matter the industry, destination or reason for travel, our expert team can assist with group charter flight requirements. Contact us for a discussion about your requirements today