Ascend Airways is in the air

Boeing 737-Max-8 (Photo: Ascend Airways).
Boeing 737-Max-8 (Photo: Ascend Airways).

Ascend Airways is in the air

Boeing 737-Max-8 (Photo: Ascend Airways).
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British airline Ascend Airways, a subsidiary of Dublin-based Avia Solutions Group (ASG), has successfully operated its first commercial flight, marking the start of its commercial operations. On April 26, 2024, the new airline launched its Boeing 737-800 (registered as G-HODL) from London-Southend Airport (SEN) on behalf of ASG company Chapman Freeborn Airchartering Limited.

This followed the issuance of an Air Operators Certificate (AOC), Type A Operating License and Route License by the UK Civil Aviation Authority on April 17, 2024. With the AOC, Ascend Airways gained full access to the UK ACMI and Charter market. The airline plans to initially operate with a fleet of two Boeing 737 aircraft in summer 2024 and expand its fleet in the future.

Tony Carder, Commercial Director at Ascend Airways, said: “This is a milestone for the company, the start of an exciting journey and we are set for a busy summer with our wet leasing operations, which start in May.”

Neil Smith from Chapman Freeborn Airchartering also said positively about the collaboration: “Our customer was very impressed with the service from start to finish. It’s great to have another UK operator in the sky and we wish them all the best for the future.”

Since the first flight, both G-HODL and a Boeing 737 MAX 8 with the registration G-WEAH have been flying from London-Gatwick Airport (LGW) on behalf of the British charter carrier TUI UK. The planes have already been spotted at various European airports, including Greece, Turkey, Italy, Cyprus and Morocco.

In the future, Ascend Airways plans to expand its fleet and cover more international routes. The company is also developing plans to establish a sister company in Malaysia within the next twelve months.

As part of ASG, Ascend Airways joins the group's growing range of ACMI (Aircraft, Crew, Maintenance, Insurance) specialty airlines. In addition to Ascend Airways, ASG is the parent company of SmartLynx Airlines, Avion Express, AirExplore, BBN Airlines Indonesia, KlasJet, Magma Aviation, Skytrans and other AOCs and air carriers. The group currently operates a combined fleet of 212 aircraft, making it the largest ACMI services company in the world.

On May 13, 2024, ASG announced that another of its new startup airlines, Avion Express Brasil, had reached Phase 3 of the certification process to acquire its AOC in Brazil. The airline hopes to complete the certification process and begin operations by the end of 2024.

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Editor of this article:

Amely Mizzi is Executive Assistant at Aviation Direct Malta in San Pawl il-Baħar. She previously worked in the Aircraft and Vessel Financing division at a banking group. She is considered a linguistic talent and speaks seven languages ​​fluently. She prefers to spend her free time in Austria on the ski slopes and in summer on Mediterranean beaches, practically on her doorstep in Gozo.
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Amely Mizzi is Executive Assistant at Aviation Direct Malta in San Pawl il-Baħar. She previously worked in the Aircraft and Vessel Financing division at a banking group. She is considered a linguistic talent and speaks seven languages ​​fluently. She prefers to spend her free time in Austria on the ski slopes and in summer on Mediterranean beaches, practically on her doorstep in Gozo.
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