smart since 2005

Travel safe, travel smart

Travel safely with Smart Aviation.

Ongoing travel restrictions are changing daily. Scheduled airlines are having to cancel or postpone flights due to the COVID 19 pandemic. At Smart Aviation, safe travelling options for our clients is our priority. Here is the difference between flying with a commercial airline in comparison to a private jet.

Private jet travel is an appealing travel option and proving to be a safer option during COVID 19. The image below shows the difference of the limited amount of contact you can expect on a private jet. This is compared from the terminal to the aircraft and final destination when travelling commercially.

Travelling by commercial airline opens you to up to 977 total interactions. When compared to private jet travel there are up to 8 total interactions.

Travelling by private jet gives you full control of your travel arrangements. You can chose the most suitable airport to depart from or arrive into. Timings can also be arranged according to your schedule.

Contact us today for a non-obligation quote.

 

Travel safe infographic

 

Viva Espana!

VIVA ESPANA! One day after the Summer solstice, Spain is fully opening its borders following one of the toughest lockdowns in Europe.

summer solsticeWe have seen an unprecedented demand over the last few weeks, as the date becomes closer, for travel to Spain. As one of the most popular countries in Europe for second homes, people are clamouring to get back to their vacation properties.

The most popular destinations that Smart are arranging flights for are Palma de Mallorca and Malaga, both easily reachable within a few hours. Aircraft types we have now confirmed include Mustang, CJ2, XLS, Hawker800, Legacy600 and CL850.

Smart Aviation Managing Director Mark Hawkins said ‘It’s been an exciting couple of weeks in the office with huge demand due to the gradual easing of lockdown across Europe. Huge praise to the team for pulling together to assist our Private Jet division.’

As Europe opens up even more, these appealing Spanish destinations should be on your wish list so to arrange your trip, feel free to contact Smart now to discuss any plans. We are fully up to date regarding travel restrictions.

Here we have a brief look at our popular Spanish destinations.

MALLORCA

While justifiably renowned for its beautiful beaches and weather, there is a lot more to this picturesque island in the Balearic than meets the eye. As the largest Island in Spain, the capital Palma offers sightseeing amongst the cathedrals and cobbled streets as well as being its vibrant and lively hub. Further afield there are pretty mountain villages to explore as well as the more infamous beach resorts.

spain beach

IBIZA

Sister island to Mallorca, Ibiza offers an experience like no other. As one of Europe’s favourite nightlife playgrounds. Ibiza boasts more than 100 miles of coastline with some 50 beaches, plus plenty of restaurants, bars, and water sports—and clubs, of course. The White Island will enchant you with its infamous sunsets and quieter coastal villages where you can find peace and tranquillity.

 

MALAGA

The province of Malaga is located in southern Spain, in the region of Andalucía, on the shores of the Mediterranean sea. Its coastline is commonly referred to as the Costa del Sol and extends along 161km with a backdrop of majestic mountains. Inland there are numerous traditional white washed villages. Beaches range from busy and vibrant with bars and restaurants to quiet isolated small coves, where your only company can be the soothing lap of the surf. For the golfers there are many courses some being of world-class golf standard. The local cuisine is full of seafood and shellfish and with an average of 300 days of sunshine a year it has a wonderful sub-tropical Mediterranean climate.

Contact Smart Aviation

Email: sales@smart-aviation.co.uk

Call: +44(0)1293 551244

Social distancing – the new normal?

Is social distancing the new normal?

Here at Smart, we have continued to remain busy during the COVID-19 pandemic informing our Group Charter clients how they can safely travel when the restrictions are lifted.

social distancing

As things begin to return to a ‘new normal’ we have been advising our clients on the positives of using slightly larger aircraft at private terminals where possible. This enables a high standard of deep cleaning pre-flight, and excellent PPE equipment for any staff and passengers. If required, a meal box can be left on the seat for each passenger therefore limiting personal contact and reassuring both our clients and their groups of how we consider their safety of the highest importance.

Moving forward, we aim to adapt as the pandemic eases offering our clients the best service and information available as it comes in.

 

Should you want to see how we can help moving forward on your next group charter please contact us today!

E – sales@smart-aviation.co.uk
P – 0044 1293 551244

Empty Legs

What is an empty leg?

Those in the know use ’empty legs’ to reduce the cost of regular private jet charter. If you have a bit of flexibility in your schedule then choosing an empty leg could well be for you.

Put simply, they are empty flights – due to operate without any passengers, one way, as the aircraft and crew need to reposition back to base or elsewhere for the next flight.

It makes good business sense to have someone on-board sharing some of the cost of the flight. These empty sectors are offered at a reduced price; a win-win situation and the perfect solution to that last minute business flight or personal trip.

Charter a private jet empty leg through us

You’ll receive the same standard and benefits of private jet travel, both on the ground and in the air, with the added advantage of a more cost effective way to travel.

Please contact our dedicated charter specialists 24/7 with your empty leg request.

60 seconds with Managing Director Mark Hawkins

What does a typical day look like for you?

I like to start my day nice and early and often the first one up. I check my emails to begin with and answer anything urgent. Then I get myself up and ready in preparation for the day ahead. Twice a week I take some time out for myself to attend boxing and fitness classes. A couple of times a week I take my daughter to school before heading into the office. I arrive into the office, catch up with my colleagues and start my working day. I still remain very active in the sales at Smart Aviation, working with both new and existing clients. Speaking to clients and following up quotes form a big part of my day.

Managing Director

What do you love about working in Aviation?

I have worked in aviation for over 25 years. The thrill of working in this industry is like no other. I still love fixing a flight and winning a deal, the buzz of beating a competitor is great. No two days are the same. One day I could be dealing with a very high profile football team charter and the next, chartering a Mustang from London to Paris.

 

What is the most challenging part of your job?

Lack of available aircraft during peak months is always a challenge. Yet we always come up with an option to serve all our clients. The current market conditions and airlines failing is also challenging.

 

What one item do you rely on most to do your job?

Charlotte, my trusted Office Manager and longest employee.

 

What do you do when you are not working?

I visit Liverpool on a regular basis to watch my team play. I often take my children or friends. Some lucky clients have also been invited in the past. In my spare time I enjoy relaxing, listening to music and going to the gym.

 

Where would you be working if you hadn’t chosen aviation?

My very first work experience was at the Fire Station and I was blown away. I believe the fire service are one of the most under rated professions. The work they do, risking their lives on a daily basis is remarkable.

60 second interview with Office Manager Charlotte Sobol

We interviewed Charlotte Sobol, who has worked for Smart Aviation since 2006. She is the back bone of the company. She manages anything from arranging office repairs to managing the company accounts.

 

Charlotte Sobol

What does a typical day look like for you?

My day can be pretty varied. A lot of responsibilities come under the title ‘Office Manager‘. My jobs include invoicing, contracts, wages, bank recs, office admin and maintenance. I’ve even been known to fix a couple of charters!

 

What do you love about working in Aviation?

It’s exciting and fast paced, which I love. No two days are the same and I’ve enjoyed seeing the company grow over the years. The industry is known to host some great aviation events. World Travel Market, International Confex just to name a few. I enjoy networking with colleagues from all around the world. I’ve been able to assist large group charters during big football and rugby games. I’ve also represented on behalf of Smart Aviation on many private jet charters.

 

What is the most challenging part of your job?

Payment is a very important factor for any business. Keeping up with contracts and payments can be a challenge as most flights need to be paid in advance.

 

What do you do when you are not working?

I love going to the gym and enjoy playing tennis. I’m no stranger at the theatre! I never miss an opportunity to watch a good stage show.

 

Where would you be working if you hadn’t chosen aviation?

The theatre! On the stage or even assisting back stage. To be part of a production would be rewarding.

 

60 seconds with Head of ACMI Daniel Parker

Daniel Parker has been an aviation enthusiast all his life.

After completing his BA hons in Airline and Airport Management, Daniel joined the wonderful world of aviation.

Daniel Parker head of ACMI at Smart Aviation

What does a typical day look like for you?

I get into the office fresh and early, just as the hangars open up for our airline clients. I touch base with them asking how things are looking for them operationally for the day and also the coming week. It is also important to ascertain if they have any issues or overdue maintenance etc. I research new businesses, looking at upcoming airlines or clients who I have haven’t spoken to before so that I can initiate and build a relationship with them.

What do you love about working in Aviation?

Just like everyone will say, no two days are ever the same in the world of aviation. The ACMI market has grown rapidly over the last few years, showcasing new airlines specialising in ACMI and even established airlines starting to place a couple of spare units to assist ACMI sales. The buzz of the aviation world always inspires me. I have been an aviation enthusiast since a very young age and the way technology has evolved and is driving the aviation industry forward is phenomenal. For many people, they are on holiday when they have their first drink at the airport waiting to board. For me it’s when I see the aircrafts on the ramp and also the smell of the jet fuel!

What is the most challenging part of your job?

Standing out in the ACMI world can be challenging so providing a unique selling point for the company and myself is an important factor in my role. I would say my unique selling points would be that I am honest, someone you can trust and I’m always on hand H24. My phone is always by my side and I will always handle my clients requests personally. This in turn helps build crucial relationships with new and existing airlines, showing them we care about their business and will be there to fully support their needs. We leave no stone unturned and treat each request as a bespoke requirement. We offer the best price as our main priority is to solve the situation swiftly without the intention of just thinking about profits. We ensure our clients get the best rates and our transparency encourages recurring business.

What one item do you rely on most to do your job?

Tough question as there are many factors that enable me to achieve my role to the best of my ability. I would say my personality and interpersonal skills have enabled me to build strong relationships with clients and airlines. A lot of them have become good friends which in turn keeps my role enjoyable and reminds them that I will always be at hand to assist them if ever in need and vice versa.

What do you do when you are not working?

Well, I like working and as mentioned I pretty much have my phone on me H24, so I will always reply to emails and calls. However, on the very rare occasion when I do relax, I like playing Paintball… a lot! I assist my local paintball centre when they are short staffed and I am a qualified marshal to assist at the centre when they have group bookings such as birthday parties, which is great fun. I also enjoy horse riding, play golf and badminton.

Six Nations kicks off with Smart

Six Nations kicks off with Smart

The Six Nations tournament begins tonight, starting with France v Wales in Paris, and Smart Aviation are celebrating another record year for charters; we have 38 flights planned during the 2019 tournament, and we are carrying over 6000 supporters meaning once again we have earned our reputation as the leading arranger of charter flights for rugby.

Since the company was founded in 2005,  Smart have earned a reputation for going over and beyond to accommodate the needs of their loyal rugby clients who will be travelling on our numerous  charters this year.

As part of that service, Smart will have representatives in Paris, Rome and Dublin to ensure everything goes without a hitch – watch out for updates on our social media as we report on the challenge of organising multiple charters for thousands of fans.

Mark Hawkins, Managing Director of Smart Aviation commented “with over ten years of experience chartering rugby supporters to the six nations we are pleased to have grown our passenger numbers to over 6000 for this tournament, meaning 2019 is a record-breaking year.  We work with some of the largest specialist sports tour operators, and we are looking forward to another successful operation.  The flights create a large volume of workload for Smart and I am delighted that we have an experienced team who can ensure that we never compromise on service in order to look after our clients”

In times of disruption, travel Smart

Hundreds of flights have either been cancelled or diverted following disruption at London Gatwick Airport (LGW) 19th and 20th December 2018.

It’s the last weekend before Christmas and passengers will be travelling to spend time with loved ones.

Gatwick Airport (LGW) have reported sightings of two drones flying over the airport, causing this major disruption.

Smart Aviation, European charter specialists, provide a bespoke charter service. Travelling with Smart means we can provide a unique service for you. We can:

  • React to emergency situations,
  • We maintain a list of flights and airports available so we can get you to your destination as planned,
  • No stress of unexpected delays.

Director of Smart Aviation, Mark Hawkins commented; ‘Disruption before Christmas has put a major strain on airlines, airports and passengers. Smart are here to help provide you with an alternative travel arrangement if needed.’

Contact us:

+44 (0)1293 551244

sales@smart-aviation.co.uk

No such thing as a ‘Break’

International Squads fly Smart

It’s another one of those weekends, as Football leagues around the world take a break for international fixtures, but for Smart Aviation – it’s definitely not a break.

International Squads need to travel for away football fixtures.  This weekend it’s a combination of fixtures in the Nations League as well as an opportunity for Countries to play international friendlies.

As always, Smart are at the centre of the action.

Across the weekend from 16-19 November, Smart will be flying five separate international squads across Europe to reach their away fixtures.  Smart have been a leader in sports travel since we started in 2005.

Our most experienced broker, Clive Head has been busy using his years of experience to ensure everything goes without a hitch for our 5 international clients.

Clive Head, our experienced Sports charter specialist

This weekend you’ll find Clive at Stansted Airport where he will be overseeing the loading of almost four tonnes of sporting equipment plus of course our VIP Sports team onto their private charter flight from the Inflite VIP terminal.

Clive will personally travel on the aircraft to ensure everything runs smoothly when we reach our destination.

Before that Clive is busy checking to ensure the two teams flying today have everything prepared, the aircraft are ready and waiting, and every last detail has been taken care of.

It’s all in a day’s work, but we never forget how important the planning of these flights are, and we pride ourselves in our years of experience and our operational knowledge, to ensure our five international teams arrive on time, fresh and prepared for their next fixture.

And as for Clive, he will be looking forward to his own well-earned break, when this ‘break’ is over.

 

Smart Aviation

Smart Aviation