Category Archives: Appalachian Air

Appalachian Air to end operations next month

 

AppalachianAir.com Jetstream 31 N657BA (14)(Grd)(AA)(LR)

Appalachian Air (Pikeville, Kentucky) hoping to find a niche in a small market in eastern Kentucky has decided to cease operations next month. The carrier, which commenced operations on October 27, 2014, issued this statement:

Appalachian Air logo (large)

Service to End in July

The companies providing air service to the Pikeville – Pike County Regional Airport (PBX) – Corporate Flight Management, dba Appalachian Air, and Public Charters, Inc. – informed the community that they will end service to PBX in July (the final date of service to be announced soon).

Appalachian Air started service between PBX and Nashville International Airport on October 27, 2014, the first such air service to Eastern Kentucky. In spite of nearly 100% operational reliability for all flights which were scheduled to operate, and, aggressive promotional pricing (in essence, a 50% discount on most tickets during this period), the service was never able to build to a sustainable level.

“The failure of Appalachian Air to gain traction in the marketplace is yet another result of President Obama’s “War on Coal,” said Luke B. Schmidt, President, L.B. Schmidt & Associates, LLC, the consultant who has been working to recruit and implement the new service with the City of Pikeville, the Pikeville – Pike County Airport Board and the Southeast Kentucky Chamber of Commerce.

“Appalachian Air provided superior service to PBX and never cancelled a flight due to aircraft availability or mechanical issues, and, only had two weather-related cancellations. However, during the run up to the service launch in 2014 and continuing into 2015, the region lost nearly 12,000 high-paying coal mining jobs, which has had a huge impact up and down the line in the local economy,” Schmidt continued.

The service was supported with minimum revenue guarantee (MRG) payments which were designed to serve as a bridge to get the new service to a sustainable position. The funds for the MRG were provided through federal and state grants. The parties recognized the inability to develop the service to a sustainable level and elected to take the fiscally responsible step of discontinuing the service, which will allow any unused funds to be returned to the grant providers.

“This service was strongly supported by the business community, the local state legislative delegation, the Governor, and Members of Kentucky’s congressional delegation. However, the decline in the economy made it very difficult to get enough passengers on board to get to a sustainable, or even break even position. I know that I speak for all of our project partners in expressing our appreciation for this support,” said Schmidt.

Passengers who have booked flights on Appalachian Air for July or later will be contacted directly by Public Charters, Inc. concerning their tickets.

Photo Above: Appalachian Air. British Aerospace (BAe) 3101 Jetstream 31 N857BA (msn 657) was the main aircraft providing the service link.

AG Staff Photographers in every part

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Appalachian Air to start operations on October 27

Appalachian Air Now Boarding

Appalachian Air (Pikesville, KY) is a new passenger airline based in eastern Kentucky. The company will launch operations on October 27 on the Pikesville-Nashville route with 19-seat BAe Jetstream 32 aircraft operated by Corporate Flight Management (Smyrna, TN) dba Appalachian Air. Corporate Flight Management is the largest Jetstream operator in the United States. All flights are operated as public charters and are marked by Public Charters.

The airline describes its operations:

Appalachian Air logo (large)

Appalachian Air is America’s newest air service – linking Eastern Kentucky, Southwestern Virginia and Southwestern West Virginia to the global air system via Nashville, TN. Appalachian Air, starting on October 27, 2014, provides daily roundtrip nonstop service between Pikeville – Pike County Regional Airport (PVL) and Nashville International Airport (BNA). Appalachian Air flights connect to flights operated by each of the airlines serving BNA (Air Canada, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Frontier Airlines, SeaPort Airlines, Southwest Airlines, United Airlines, and US Airways) to more than 50 nonstop destinations, such as Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Los Angeles, New York and Washington, D.C.

Appalachian Air flies the sleek British Aerospace Jetstream J32 turboprop aircraft. The Jetstream J32 holds 19 passengers in a pressurized, stand-up cabin with comfortable leather seating. This high performance aircraft can cruise as high as 25,000 feet at a speed of 265 MPH with two pilots.

All flights between Pikeville and Nashville are public charter flights, operated by Corporate Flight Management dba as Appalachian Air, which serves as the Direct Carrier and Public Charters, Inc., which serves as the Indirect Carrier, in accordance with 14 CFR Part 380 and are regulated by the United States Department of Transportation.

Corporate Flight Management (CFM), which handles all of the flying aspects of Appalachian Air’s Pikeville – Nashville service, is the largest operator of Jetstream J32 aircraft in the U.S. and is based in Smyrna, TN. CFM holds the prestigious ARGUS Platinum safety rating – the highest award in its industry. CFM has a $2.2 million parts inventory to support J32 operations and provides heavy maintenance service for worldwide operators of the J32 at its Smyrna facility.

Public Charters, Inc. (PC) handles all of the non-flying aspects of Appalachian Air’s Pikeville – Nashville service – such as ticket sales, aircraft ground handling, baggage handling, etc. – under its P1 code which is authorized by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and is based in Avoca, PA. PC has distribution rights on certain Global Distribution Systems (GDS) such as Amadeus and Sabre. PC also has distribution rights on all of the leading online ticket distribution systems, such as Priceline.com.

Video: The new airline first proposed its service on November 6, 2013. The new service has been delayed since March 3, 2014.

All images by Appalachian Air.

Appalachian Air Jetstream 32 (AA)(LR)