Luxembourg-headquartered fractional ownership and management company Jetfly has strengthened its offering within the “thriving UK market” thanks to a partnership with a local firm and fellow Pilatus aircraft operator Ravenair. The venture was created on the back of the UK’s exit from the EU, which removed the freedom for EU-based operators to perform internal flights within the former member state.
“Until the end of the [Dec. 31, 2020] transition period, Jetfly could operate freely within the then 28 member states using our LX-prefixed aircraft under EASA private aviation regulations,” explained Jetfly sales director UK Jonathan Clough.
“To fly domestically within the UK following Brexit, Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) rules dictate that Jetfly members be transported on a G-registered aircraft operated on a local air operator certificate [AOC]. The arrangement with UK-based Ravenair—an experienced PC-12 operator since 2015—gives us an ideal solution for this market and now we have all our bases covered for our members—UK to EU, intra-UK, and intra-EU,” Clough added.
The first Jetfly-owned and -branded PC-12—registered as G-OJFA—arrived at Jetfly’s Fairoaks Airport, southern England base in late May, and services with the turboprop single began soon after. Airworthiness, registration, and AOC “formalities” included a 300-hour scheduled maintenance check undertaken at Jetfly’s Part 145 maintenance facility at Bournemouth Airport on the UK southern coast, overseen by Ravenair's Continuing Airworthiness Management Organization, said the Liverpool-headquartered firm.
Jetfly noted four “fully trained UK pilots” are currently supporting G-OJFA, which has logged more than 30 domestic passenger flights to date. Two more Jetfly-owned PC-12s are scheduled to join the UK fleet before year-end.
By building the UK-based PC-12 inventory, Clough said Jetfly is aiming to “significantly reduce its reliance on costly third-party sub-charter to satisfy demand UK demand. “We are trying to manage customer expectations,” he added, “but it is a challenge given we are experiencing one of the busiest periods in the UK since operations began here in 2010”.
Jetfly has 350 fractional owners, around a fifth of which are UK based. “This is a really important and growing market for us,” Clough said. “The PC-12 with its low operating costs versatility and great range serves our customers well.”
Jetfly is one of the largest Pilatus operators in the world, with a fleet of around 60 PC-12 turboprops and PC-24 twinjets. More than half of its inventory is fractionally owned, Clough said, and the remainder is operated by its charter and management sister company Fly7, which Jetfly acquired in 2019.
Clough attributes Jetfly’s membership in UK trade body the British Business and General Aviation Association (BBGA) in mid-2021 to its successfully “navigating relations” with the UK CAA and subsequently working through the AOC process with Ravenair. “It’s important to engage with and be a part of the UK general aviation community,” he added.