Geneva has been the home base for PrivatAir since 1977, when the company was launched using the aircraft fleet owned by the Latsis Group. Over 35 years, PrivatAir has grown through the acquisition and operation of large cabin aircraft, developing partnerships along the way to open and operate routes for leading commercial airlines. The dedication to provide exceptional standards of safety and service has earned the company its solid reputation in the business aviation industry. Today, the three key divisions of PrivatAir - Business Aviation, Scheduled Services and PrivatTraining - offer a full range of services to individuals, corporations and commercial airlines.
The story of PrivatAir’s growth:
- In 1979, the company acquired its first Boeing 737 and in 1989, its first Boeing 757 and Gulfstream IV.
- In June 1995, PrivatAir S.A. received its Swiss Air Operator Certificate from the Federal Office of Civil Aviation.
- In June 1998, PrivatAir S.A. placed an order for two Boeing Business Jets (BBJ) and became the first commercial operator to order the BBJ.
- In December 1998, PrivatAir S.A. became Europe's first airline with a quality system that fulfilled the IS09002 certification standards for all its services.
- In December 1999, PrivatAir S.A. acquired a third BBJ, becoming at the time the only commercial operator of three of the new generation of Boeing ultra-long-range executive aircraft (BBJ).
- In May 2000, the first BBJ was brought into operation, quickly followed by two more.
- In March 2001 the PrivatAir Group was formed.
- Also in March 2001, the PrivatAir Group gained ETOPS 180 minutes and FAA 129 Foreign Carrier approval as a designated carrier under the US-Switzerland bilateral "open skies" agreement. These approvals allow the company to offer the most direct routes across the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and unlimited operations to the US. At the time, PrivatAir was the only ad hoc commercial charter operator in the world with these approvals.
- In February 2002, PrivatAir completed the construction of its private terminal in Geneva where its headquarters are now based. The new "C3" terminal is a joint venture between PrivatAir and Geneva International Airport and offers a full range of VIP passenger services to PrivatAir's customers.
- On June 17th 2002, PrivatAir launched a six-days-a-week business-class-only service for Lufthansa between Düsseldorf and New York's Newark Airport. Under this arrangement, which includes maintenance, insurance and crew, PrivatAir operated a 48-seat Boeing 737-700 Business Jet.
- Appointed by Airbus in October 2002 to operate a corporate shuttle to transport its staff between the group's production sites in Toulouse (France), Hamburg (Germany) and Filton (United Kingdom), PrivatAir acquired two new Airbus A319 aircraft. Commencing service in May 2003, each aircraft was configured with 126 identical leather seats with an all-business-class service offered on board. The Airbus corporate shuttle service operated until April 2008.
- In February 2003, PrivatAir appointed Greg Thomas as Chief Executive Officer, succeeding David Hurley who became Vice Chairman of the Board.
- In March 2003, PrivatAir and Lufthansa announced the introduction of two further transatlantic routes (Dusseldorf-Chicago and Munich-Newark), which commenced service in May-June 2003. PrivatAir operated two brand-new 48-seat Airbus A319LR aircraft on these routes.
- In May 2003, PrivatAir and Swissport announced the creation of a joint company, PrivatPort, to play a substantial role in the exclusive executive jet handling business at Geneva airport.
- In October 2003, PrivatAir gained JAR – 145 approval from the German civil aviation authority, giving the company more autonomy and flexibility within the framework of its operations on behalf of Lufthansa and Airbus. Furthermore, the approval opened up the possibility of offering line maintenance services to third parties in Dusseldorf.
- From January 2005 through March 2012, PrivatAir operated a six-days-a-week, all-business-class service on behalf of Swiss International Airlines on the route of Zurich-Newark, aboard a 56-seat Boeing Business Jet 2.
- From October 2005 through October 2011, PrivatAir operated a six-days-a-week, business-class-only service between Amsterdam and Houston on behalf of KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, using a 44-seat Boeing Business Jet.
- In October 2007, the BBJ operating the Munich to New York route was redeployed to Frankfurt in order to serve Frankfurt to New York on behalf of Lufthansa.
- In 2008, the two Dusseldorf-based Airbus A319LR aircraft and the Frankfurt-based BBJ were redeployed to operate alternative all-business-class services on behalf of Lufthansa. PrivatAir added new routes to the Middle East and Asia.
- In 2009, PrivatAir acquired three Boeing Business Jets 2, to replace the Airbus A319LR aircraft operating on behalf of Lufthansa. The company also introduced dual-class services to a number of new destinations.
- From March 2011 through June 2012, PrivatAir operated a seven–days-a-week dual-class service on behalf of Gulf Air on a BBJ, originally on the Geneva - Manama (Kingdom of Bahrain) - Muscat (Oman) and Milan - Manama – Muscat routes, which were later on replaced by Frankfurt – Manama and Copenhagen – Manama routes.
- Between August and October 2014, PrivatAir provided six-days-a-week all-business class service on behalf of Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) on a 44 seat Boeing BBJ1 between Stavanger and Houston. In October 2015, PrivatAir moved the production to operate six-days-a-week all-business class service on behalf of SAS on a 44 seat Boeing BBJ1 between Copenhagen and Newark. On April 2016, PrivatAir commenced seven-days-a-week dual-class service on behalf of SAS on a 20C + 66Y seat Boeing BBJ1 between Copenhagen and Boston.
Our aim is to continue on our path of growth, providing tailor-made solutions for ever-changing customer needs.
At PrivatAir, we operate under the most stringent safety standards, far exceeding industry requirements. In 2004, we became the first business aviation company awarded the prestigious IOSA (IATA Operational Safety Audit) certification, the first internationally recognizsed audit standards for safety. We also received the Platinum Safety of Flight award in 2008, 2009 and 2011.
What do these stringent safety standards mean in real terms for our passengers?
When you board a PrivatAir flight, you can be assured that all of the following procedures have been followed:
- All of our flight personnel are trained annually in cabin safety, medical treatment, dangerous goods handling, security and people skills.
- All crew sign non-disclosure agreements and pass background checks.
- All PrivatAir pilots hold an Airline Transport Pilot License (ATPL) or as minimum frozen ATPL and are type-rated in their respective aircraft.
- All pilots pass a comprehensive series of technical, medical and psychological tests.
- Before take-off, destinations, routes and passenger lists are carefully screened and approved by our Head of Security. Manifests, locations and follow-on legs are checked and verified.
- Pre-boarding aircraft searches are regularly conducted.
- Each aircraft is assigned its own dedicated flight engineer.
- Complete fastidious training records are kept for all maintenance staff.
In addition, upon request, we can go much further to ensure your complete security:
- We can assign an on-board security representative.
- Your aircraft can be equipped with state of the art intrusion alarms and motion detector systems.
- An extensive security brief can be prepared on the destination locale, and stringent security can accompany you to your final destination.
Award winning, registered maintenance
PrivatAir manages aircraft to JAR 145 maintenance and inspection programmes. Our maintenance professionals, type-rated in specific aircraft models, are beyond compare. PrivatAir is ISO9001-2000 registered, with standards that integrate fully with our quality and safety procedures. All operations, maintenance and safety manuals and programmes comply with the FAA’s CSET and ATOS standards. Not only do we keep complete fastidious training records on our maintenance staff, but we also carefully monitor and manage OEM and vendor maintenance personnel, including mandatory drug and alcohol testing.
A strict training regimen
A key determinant of PrivatAir’s sterling safety record is our emphasis on continual training. PrivatAir mandates ground school training both in the classroom and online. All flight personnel are trained annually in cabin safety and medical treatment.
In addition, all pilots undergo indoctrination training and five days per year of FlightSafety and SimuFlight systems training. They also take bi-annual simulator tests under strict supervision.