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Aircraft chartering from the Shorts Belfast to the Hybrid Airships

Friday, April 21, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Russi Batliwala
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The aircraft charter industry has seen some big changes since I started in 1987. The Shorts Belfast was in the late 1980’s the largest commercially available aircraft, that could take off within a few hours’ notice to fly urgent car parts through Europe or outsized cargo worldwide. With the entry of Russian and Ukrainian aircraft in the early 1990’s the niche priced Belfast’s days came to an end.


The charter market grew at an incredible rate with the influx of many new names such as Antonov Ilyushin Myra Ruslan and new numbers AN124 AN225 IL76 AN12 AN24 AN26 and many others. What had previously only been possible with the limited amount of Western made niche aircraft, like the Belfast, Merchantman, Hercules and Guppy was now readily available, with increased capabilities and most importantly huge amounts of flexibility.


Today the niche and outsized charter market is still the home for the Russian and Ukranian aircraft. Looking into the future, maybe very soon Hybrid Airships will be competing with Antonov’s and Ilyushin’s and be among the answers to the niche and outsized charter market of tomorrow.


The aircraft chartering industry has grown over the last years, in some cases, major global airlines have increased capacity to allow for more dedicated charter business either for single or for regular charters.


In my opinion operational flexibility and a “yes we can” attitude is a must, for any aircraft operator wanting to be successful in this dynamic part of the air cargo industry. TIACA membership includes many of the world’s leading air charter operators and charter brokers. Being part of TIACA is vital to keeping up to date with industry regulations that include issues affecting aircraft chartering.

Russi Batliwala
CEO Chapman Freeborn group of companies

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