An interview with Peter Bondar who, together with his colleagues, has launched a new air taxi service called Diamond Executive Aviation. Using Diamond DA42 Twin Star aircraft they hope to offer a cost effective and efficient air taxi service from your local airfield.
For some time I’ve thought that there was an opportunity for someone to set up an air taxi service using small cost-effective twin engined aircraft, flying from local airstrips. So, when I heard about Diamond Executive Aviation, I approached them for a Flying Podcast interview. Peter Bondar, CEO of Diamond Executive Aviation, agreed and this is the result.
Diamond Executive are based up near Bagby Airfield in Yorkshire. They use the Diamond DA42 Twin Star aircraft and offer a personalised air taxi srvice for business professionals, covering the UK, Ireland and northern Europe. Peter saw a niche in the market offering a point to point taxi service, saving time over the conventional commercial airline service.
The aircraft is ideally suited to the service being quiet, economical and has a relatively low carbon footprint. The range of the Twin Star is over 1000 miles so they can easily fly to much of the near continent carrying up to 3 passengers. It is certified for flight in bad weather and known icing conditions and so is like a cut down, state of the art air-liner. The aircraft are not pressurised and so are limited to 10,000 feet but this gives the passengers a much better view of the ground below when not travelling above the cloud in bright sunshine.
At time of recording this podcast the company had 2 aircraft but they aim to quickly expand this number to cover the entire UK.
One of the great advantages of using Diamond Executive Aviation is the fact that you can fly from a local airfield. In my experince this means that you can park easily and don’t have to run the gaunlet of the usual security and customs of international airports.
A typical cost would be approx Â£2000 for a return flight from North Yorkshire to France with a pilot ready to fly at your convenience. That would equate to Â£660 per person if 3 people were travelling.
The pilots are all extremely experienced and most have 3-4000 hours flying time. Several are ex-military and Peter claims that he has the crÃ¨me de la crÃ¨me of pilots.
In addition to their passenger taxi service, they have also delivered urgent parcels around Europe.