It’s been three months since Plus Ultra received its first airplane- an A340, previously property of Gulf Air, but Plus Ultra still doesn’t have its Air Operator Certificate (AOC). This is the reason why the plane remains parked at the Iberia facilities in Madrid´s airport with the ensuing expense.
According to preferente.com, the long range flight airline propelled by the ex-executive of Air Madrid Julio Martínez, is spending between 1,000 and 2,000 Euros daily on keeping the A340 indoors, according to the marketing manager Rony Nahón. The sum changes depending on the place the plane occupies since it “sometimes has to be moved for maintenance to carry out revisions”.
A few days ago the plane flew to France to have some adjustments done but shortly after returned to Madrid, where it will remain until Plus Ultra obtains the AOC which allows it to take off. On this subject, Nahón assures that “we are continuing to file the papers” and trust that everything will be ready for next year. “We are excited about starting in the first trimester of 2015”.
The marketing director of Plus Ultra Airlines recognizes that they have accumulated loses of “millions” because of the AOC delay but insists that the process is normal and that every airline has had to go through it. “We knew all of this before starting. We know that it’s expensive but the potential growth of the Madrid airport is tremendous. We have to be here no matter what”.
The idea that the airline has in mind- always dependent on obtaining the AOC- is to be able to start operating before the 31st of March for third parties. That way, it can begin the high season operating regular flights to Latin America. The possibility of operating with the AOC of another company, according to Nahón, has been discarded.
Photo: A9C-LG A343 in a basic Gulf Air color scheme before being painted as Plus Ultra by John Taggart / Wikimedia Commons