Conciair offer a luxury service
PUBLISHED: 12:38 19 November 2010 | UPDATED: 16:32 20 February 2013
Travel by air and enjoyment are two concepts that have been mutually exclusive for many years. Now a Sussex company is offering a luxury service that puts the two back together...
Travel by air and enjoyment are two concepts that have been mutually exclusive for many years. Now a Sussex company is offering a luxury service that puts the two back together. Simon Irwin flew over to Goodwood to find out more about the people who put passengers first...
Barrie Prescott is a man with a vision. He wants to make air travel special again. As a businessman whose whole life has been in aviation, he has spent what amounts to months of his life flying round the world and has experienced first hand how the glamour and fun of air travel has been reduced to the delay-ridden drudge of today.
Barrie Prescott'sdream was to offer a truly bespoke service from the companys base at Goodwood aerodrome for customers who wanted to travel in the UK and Europe.
The companys claim in its advertising is that you could be at most European destinations in the time it would take to travel to the check-in desk at either Heathrow or Gatwick.
Barrie says that the company can arrange air travel to anywhere within a 1,000 mile radius of Goodwood with just 72 hours notice.
He says: Everything we do is to do with quality. We want to make the journey enjoyable, not one of stress.
Barrie set up his company Conciair with operations manager Gigi Ancora, who also has a lifetime of experience in aviation. She worked in customer services for BAA at Gatwick airport for almost 20 years.
Gigi has a simple principle underlying her vision of customer service: I like to treat people the way I would like to be taken care of myself.
Her aim is a true door to door service: We can really take the stress out of it. Part of the service is that our customers do not have to arrange too much. We can do a lot over the phone.
We can do the whole thing, arrange pick up from your home, bring you to Goodwood and escort you to the aircraft. We aim to offer real customer service which simply does not exist at airports today.
What does this mean in practice? It means that if you, for example, want to go for a romantic meal at Le Touquet, then you would drive to Goodwood and park your car at the aerodrome.
There you would be met by Gigi, present your passports for checking and then be taken to the plane.
And then you would take off for the French coast. Once there you would be guided through the limited paperwork at the airfield and get in your taxi to the restaurant.
When you have enjoyed your lunch, you would telephone the pilot to set the time for your return. Not exactly the usual air travel experience.
And how much would this trip cost? Obviously as with any bespoke arrangement, the price changes according to the details but a rough guide for this trip to the chic northern France resort would be in the region of 650 if you arrived at the aerodrome under your own steam and paid for your own taxi once there.
Other options that the company offers are for business travellers going to meetings or, for example, wishing to connect with flights further afield from London City airport.
Conciair has two aircraft, both Hawker Beechcroft Baron G58 models. Inside, these twin-engined planes have the feel of a luxury
car inside except the seats face
Just like a car, a passenger can sit in the front except, unlike a car, both seats have a set of controls although the passenger is definitely not expected to fly the plane.
Because the aircraft flies lower than a commercial jet it gives spectacular views of the passing landscape underneath.
Including the front seat, the Baron will seat five passengers and the pilot. It has a range of more than 1,000 miles and travels at a speed well over 200 miles per hour.
How to find Conciair