AirGO notes increased demand this year for its fleet of Piaggio Avantis. “This year there is actually no low season period, and we cannot accept all bookings due to the capacity utilisation of our fleet,“ states CEO Daniela Flierl of the Mainz-headquartered German operator. “Accordingly, we are seeing more early bookings again. Increasing demand for private jets due to the pandemic plays a certain role. But we can also see that many customers have recognised the sustainability of the Piaggio Avanti. No other business jet brings customers to their destination in Europe so fuel-efficiently and comfortably in a stand-up cabin. The Citation XLS+ with a comparable cabin already emits twice as much CO2 emissions as the Avanti. All other light jets or turboprops are both smaller and less fuel-efficient and emit higher amounts of CO2.”
Passengers can also decide to use AirGO's SAF Book & Claim model and AirGO refuels with SAF at airports whenever it is available. Even using SAF on an Avanti doesn’t increase the fuel cost at a higher level compared to many other light or super light jets, according to Flierl. Facing a continuous increase in fuel price triggers also more demand for fuel-efficient aircraft. Therefore, demand of purchase and investment have also increased significantly, and the firm will be expanding its fleet next year to meet the demand for charter flights.
She continues: “AirGO has had a strong and healthy business since the foundation of the company. That backlog gave us the flexibility to also withstand the periods with low or even no flying due to travel restrictions. We have noticed up and downs during the pandemic. Some projects have come to nothing due to the uncertain future. Also, some of our loyal customers have been hit hard by the impact of the pandemic in their business. But on the other hand, we have seen an increasing demand since the lockdowns and the sustainability subject coming back in focus.
“In 2021 shortage of aircraft availability and also maintenance capacity has been the problem rather than travel restrictions. We are feeling a bit nervous about possible travel restrictions and lockdowns over the winter due to the new Omicron variant. That variant is still so much of an unknown that we don’t know if it could be the chance to mark the end of the pandemic due to its high infection rate but harmless course or the opposite with an even worse and dangerous course than before.
“Flying private remains a good choice, and people want to move and will finally not stop. However, we expect some ups and downs in business aviation to continue as long the pandemic doesn't come to an end.”