May 22, 2018
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BIA awarded three-year military flight contract

By Eric Russell, BDN Staff

BANGOR, Maine — A Georgia-based military transit company has signed a three-year contract to use Bangor International Airport as its exclusive technical stop on the East Coast.

BIA submitted a proposal earlier this fall and was selected by Global Aviation Holdings Inc. ahead of several other facilities for the breadth of services offered here in Bangor, according to Airport Director Rebecca Hupp.

“They went through a competitive process and we provided the best value overall,” she said. “Not just through the airport but with other vendors such as caterers and hotels.”

Brett Stacey, manager of the Holiday Inn in Bangor, said providing hotel rooms for airline crews is a big part of his business.

“Global’s decision to remain in Bangor is a testament to the quality and value of the service provided by [BIA] and other vendors,” he said.

Although BIA has a wide variety of commercial flights daily, it also relies on non-scheduled flights such as military charters. The airport also has the highly publicized Maine Troop Greeters, a group of volunteers that meets every military flight that comes through Bangor.

Global Aviation of Peachtree City, Ga., the parent company for World Airways and North American Airlines, already had service agreements with BIA, but the recent contract solidifies the relationship. It also takes the wind out of the sails at Portsmouth International Airport in New Hampshire, which has been trying to siphon military flights from BIA by cutting some of its fees.

Hupp said the contract with Global Aviation would not create any new flights necessarily but would retain flights that already have been using Bangor. The contract does not have any specific flight requirements.

“It’s important to understand that this traffic is contingent upon the world situation,” she said. “If things change overseas [militarily], we could see an increase or decrease.”

Charlie Addison, vice president for strategic sourcing at Global Aviation Holdings, said Bangor fit the company’s needs.

“BIA has been providing quality service for World Airways and North American Airlines for several years, and we are pleased to continue a contract for cost-effective operations there through 2012,” Addison said in a statement.

Earlier this fall, another military flight company, Omni Air of Tulsa, Okla., sent some of its flights to Portsmouth after the New Hampshire airport waived landing and fuel flowage fees. Those flights returned to BIA after a brief trial.

According to Hupp, the economic impact of the contract cannot be easily determined because there are so many variables to consider. BIA’s landing fee is $1.04 per 1,000 pounds of maximum takeoff weight, which averages between $300 and $430 for military charters based on aircraft size, according to Hupp. Fuel and other fees vary widely depending on the services that are requested.

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