Ten Secrets That Will Keep Your ‘Love Affair’ With An FBO Alive!
It’s no secret that the greatest asset an FBO can have is its people. Its people are the front line that you, the customer, sees as you taxi onto the ramp, come in through the front door or parachute in during a special event!
Here are some things to look for when you want your expensive jet, turboprop or J3 Cub, cared for by the people at the FBO as if it were their own.
FBO’S are up against some incredibly stiff competition these days as fuel prices vary from day to day, large conglomerates take over smaller FBO’s (do you want a slightly cheaper fuel price at the cost of better, more personalized, loyal service?) and other challenges that the ‘average’ FBO succumbs to.
Below are Ten Secrets of a great FBO that will have you coming back time and again.
(1) What can the FBO provide that the competition doesn’t? What do they do better? What’s your first impression of their service? How are you treated on the line, at the counter, when you’re in a hurry, or when you’re less than civil in your treatment of the FBO’s employees?
(2) Do they have Competitive, Cooperative Fuel Programs? Such as Ascent, AVCARD, BaseOps, World Fuel Services, and points awarded to FlyBuys members? Do they accept payment from most major fuel programs and credit cards like Rockwell-Collins, Everest, UV Air, World Fuel, Colt and more?
(3) Are they listed and up to date in publications like AC-U-KWIK, AOPA or AirNav? These publications give you information about the FBO that you can’t get anywhere else. Check these often to make sure they’re up to date and check this information against what you actually see at the FBO.
(4) Do they care about you? This might seem like a silly question but do they care enough about you to maintain contact with you? Do you get email updates from them? Is their blog up to date and interesting or is it just a bunch of statistics without it “talking to you” and your needs? Are you just another “pretty airplane” or new tail number that they’ve never seen before or they give you the impression that they care less about seeing you again? If so, keep your engine running and go elsewhere if possible!
(5) Is their website interesting, visually attractive and updated often to keep you “in the loop” as to what the FBO is doing to better serve you? This one is becoming increasingly important as more business is done online. Do they spell out clearly who they are, why they want your business, what they will do to get it and keep it, and why they’re a better choice than other FBO’s in the area? Is their website easily found on search engines? That means they’re constantly looking out for your best interests. Does their website “tell their story” in a way that helps you “know, like and trust” them?
(6) Are they on social media? Social media communication is a key to their taking business, and you, seriously. Sites like Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube to mention the most prominent. If they are, this shows that they are interested in keeping you informed. That interest translates to how they will treat you when you become a customer.
(7) Do they provide incentives for you to do business with them? Like contests, giveaways, i.e. flight crew freebies, crew cars, comfortable lounges, concierge service, a bottle of wine – especially nice when you fly into northern California wine country – and certified tour guide customer service agents.
(8) Do they provide you with places of interest around the FBO, transportation and passes to those places, along with skilled, certified people to give you the kind of tour you would expect from a great FBO?
(9) Do they take the time and commit the resources to “getting to know you” so they can better serve your needs and desires? This might take the form of feedback requests to find out what they’re doing right and what they’re not doing that you would like them to do.
(10) Do they freely admit areas where they are dropping the ball, things that need improvement? This tells you a lot about their authenticity and their vulnerability, which goes a long way to building the kind of trust that will keep you coming back as a regular customer.
If you have anything to add to this list, we would like to hear it so KaiserAir can “check all the boxes” on being the kind of FBO that you look forward to visiting.
THE 10 SAFEST AIRPORTS IN THE US
It’s official: flying is safer than ever. There may be the occasional incident involving sleepy pilots or a passenger with air rage, but accidents are at a minimum. Some airports are better than others and the number of safe airports is increasing thanks to stricter regulations and safety improvements made by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Data from the FAA was used to determine the following list of the top 10 safest airports in the U.S. The methodology for determining the scores is described below by Travel & Leisure Magazine.
To calculate an airport’s safety score, they used information from the FAA’s Runway Safety Report and individual runway safety data supplied by the FAA. They started with the Runway Incident Rate—the total number of runway incidents divided by the total number of runway operations (takeoffs and landings), then averaged the rate for the five years covered in our survey period.
They then looked at serious (Category A and B) runway incidents in which there was a strong or good possibility of a crash or human casualties. We assigned values to these incidents: 1 for “A” and 0.5 for “B.” They added these Category A/B incident scores to the overall incident rate per year to achieve an overall score and ranking.
1. NORTHERN KENTUCKY INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (CVG) Score – 0.26
Runway Incidents from 2006 to 2010 – 4
Safety Innovations – The major improvements made to this airport include a new north-south runway and underground transportation. The safety record of this airport is so good that there has been just a single runway incident during the period of 2008 to 2010. In addition, the incident did not have any safety implications.
2. MEMPHIS INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (MEM) Score – 0.588
Runway Incidents from 2006 to 2010 – 10
Safety Innovations – The FAA’s new and modern building has a state of the art control tower with an extensive radar approach control. The safety record of the airport is outstanding considering the fact that it is one of the busiest cargo airports in the world. It shares its runways with the Tennessee Air National Guard.
3. GEORGE BUSH HOUSTON INTERCONTINENTAL AIRPORT (IAH) Score – 0.68
Runway Incidents from 2006 to 2010 – 19
Safety Innovations – The master plan of this airport has provisions for perimeter taxiway to prevent arriving and departing aircrafts from crossing paths by making them loop around active runways. This airport is one of the four airports in the world that offers direct flights to all inhabited continents.
4. PITTSBURGH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (PIT) Score – 0.70
Runway Incidents from 2006 to 2010 – 6
Safety Innovations – Due to the weather in Pittsburgh, the airport has made provisions for the removal of snow and ice. The ice and snow removal system of the airport makes it one of the safest airports globally, especially during the winter months. Safety innovations of the airport include rear and front de-icing teams as well as runway sensors relaying current information of ice and snow conditions. There is also direct communication between the control tower and the snow removal teams.
5. PORTLAND INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (PDX) Score – 0.73
Runway Incidents between 2006 and 2010 – 9
Safety Innovations – The airport had a three year program for improvement of the airport. The airport now has a bigger runway, a reconstructed second runway and newer taxiways.
6. ORLANDO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (MCO) Score – 0.75
Runway Incidents from 2006 to 2010 – 13
Safety Innovations – Thanks to the relatively cheap land that was available in central Florida, this airport expanded and constructed parallel runways which made operations much safer. Its Runway Status Lights System helps the pilots get real time runway occupancy information.
7. SAN DIEGO LINDBERGH FILED INTERNATIONAL (SAN) Score – 0.85
Runway Incidents from 2006 to 2010 – 4
Safety Innovations – Although the approach to Lindbergh field is low, it is one of the top 10 safest airports in the U.S. It has a Runway Status Lights System and has undergone operational evaluation.
8. MINNEAPOLIS-ST. PAUL INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (MSP) Score – 0.93
Runway Incidents from 2006 to 2010 – 21
Safety Innovations – MSP is one of the oldest and biggest airports in the U.S. It has four runways, de-icing pads and upgraded electronic aircraft guidance systems. It also has aprons, taxiways and repaved runways.
9. LAGUARDIA AIRPORT (LGA) Score – 0.97
Runway Incidents from 2006 to 2010 – 17
Safety Innovations – This airport in New York is one of smallest in the metropolitan area with an excellent safety record. The ongoing rehabilitation program of the airport includes Touchdown Zone Lights on both its runways to enhance safety of the airport.
10. DETROIT METRO AIRPORT (DTW) Score – 1.33
Runway Incidents between 2006 and 2010 – 31
Safety Innovations and Enhancements – The airport has special equipment for detection of airport surface that monitors the aircrafts’ and vehicles’ position on the taxiways, parking areas and runways. It has its own Runway Status Lights Systems, which will be operational from 2014.
Photo Credits (in order): Bryan Correira, Daniel Betts, Courtesy of Houston Airport System, Amy Strycula / Alamy, Courtesy of Port of Portland, Courtesy of Orlando International Airport, Aerial Archives / Alamy, Aerial Archives / Alamy, Courtesy of The Port Authority of NY & NJ, Wayne County Airport Authority/Vito Palmisano
Check out this time lapse of our ramp during the Super Bowl; what you can't see is where we parked all of the airplanes. What you see here is the flow of arrivals and departures on SB Sunday and the following Monday (including the 737 flying on Monday morning). Watch the flow of passengers on the lower lefts side of the screen.
What a wild weekend, and the KaiserAir team out performed expectations!
It was a big day at the Oakland airport yesterday. Amelia Erhardt arrived after her historic Lots of press and VIPs attending the event.
Giving a little demo of our newest addition to the fleet. M732KA, Victoria, is in Burbank to show it off to prospective charters.
I caught this shot of Nick recently heading across the ramp. Since SFO closed two runways we've been extra busy and everyone at KaiserAir has been working hard to make sure everyone gets the quality of service they deserve.
This is big news and I hope people are paying attention:
SFO will temporarily close two runways during the summer of 2014 to complete the final phase of a multi-year, federally mandated Runway Safety Area (RSA) construction project.
Construction is scheduled to begin on May 17, 2014 and is planned to last through September 2014.
For more information and project updates by going to:http://www.flysfo.com/flight-info/alerts-advisories/temporary-runway-closures-summer-2014
During the 2014 RSA runway closures, the Airport will operate exclusively on its two major runways, Runways 28L and 28R.
Business aircraft operating into the San Francisco Bay Area should expect extensive delays, so we advise planning your alternates now.
And here is the good news:
KaiserAir has long been the preferred FBO for the greater San Francisco Bay Area because of its direct, easy access to both Silicon Valley and Downtown San Francisco. With 24 hour access, no noise restrictions, better weather and lower prices than either San Jose or San Francisco - Oakland is a natural choice. Call us at +1 (510) 569-9622, or reach us at OAK@kaiserair.com.