An update from the CEO

posted by Karl Desmond on 2021-07-10

As some of you know, we have recently had some down time at the airline whilst we sorted out a few things on our end. I am pleased to announce that we are up and running again with no foreseeable issues.

There have been some substantial changes at Zip recently and I feel it’s only fair these are explained.

As mentioned previously, Alex has moved into a chairman position so he can spend time focusing on personal projects and enjoy the airline as a pilot. We’re pleased to say that he is very much still with us, has a lot of input and is our go-to guru when we need help. Alex is an extremely talented livery painter and will continue to paint our aircraft for us.

As part of this taking place, I have moved into the role of CEO and will continue to run the ZipVirtual and Citrus Airways operations. My previous role as Chief Commercial Office has been consolidated with the Director of Flight Operations role and as such, I’d like to personally welcome Scott Hardy into the role of Director of Airline Operations. Scott has worked incredibly hard alongside myself and Alex recently and we feel his promotion is well deserved. He will be focusing on the day-to-day running of the airlines and working on our new charter-based system, in which we will be leasing a white liveried Zip aircraft our to European & American based airlines. Our first lease is already in the works and we hope to go live with this soon.

It’s no secret that we have recently scaled back the size of the ZipVirtual operation. We know we made a mistake moving to the vAMSYS system and it didn’t do our airline any justice. We have moved back to our original vaBase system, where it all began. When Zip was first launched last year, we had a steady stream of pilots and 40 or so routes, which were being flown daily. We thought we could run before we could walk, and it didn’t pay off so with this in mind, we have reduced the number of hubs we have down to two (one for each airline). We have a base in Luton for ZipVirtual and San Diego for Citrus Airways. Both hubs are already proving popular amongst our pilots and it’s clear that we made the right choice.

We’ve also decided to re-introduce the ‘fly anywhere’ system. Those of you who were present at the beginning will remember that you could fly anything you wanted anywhere in the world, if it was Zip liveried. We know how popular this was and we think it’s a feature that’s unique, and you all do too. Our only requests are that you file the flight number with your Pilot ID and fly a Zip livery.

Upon leaving the vAMSYS system, we carried across 14 registered pilots. This number was the lowest we had seen in a long time. At the time of writing this, I’m pleased to say that we now have 26 registered pilots, with 3 registering in the last 24 hours alone. A fantastic increase in such a short space of time, and a testament to how user-friendly and integrated the vaBase system is.

In line with scaling back the operation, we recently removed many aircraft from our fleet. Whilst it was a brilliant concept, many aircraft were not flown so to us it made sense to withdraw them from service. As part of going back to our roots though, we’re pleased to announce that the Bombardier Dash-8 is now back in service. There are scheduled daily routes from Luton but again, you can fly this anywhere in the world using your Pilot ID and a Zip livery. We will be reinstating the withdrawn aircraft back to the fleet pages so you can download the liveries to use, but there are no plans right now to reintroduce the A319, 737-700/900ER, 747-400/8i, 767-300ER, 777 or the 787-8/9 to scheduled service. This will be reviewed at the right time as the airline grows.

We have moved to a new and tidier Discord server which Harry Edwards (Zip005) kindly looks after for us. Please feel free to stop by using the link on the homepage. If you have any issues or requests for this, please contact Harry or a member of the management team.

Final note:

Lastly, I’d like to thank everyone for their continued support during the last year which has been difficult for everyone in many ways. Zip wouldn’t be where it is today without you and we hope we can continue to build an airline group and community you enjoy and are proud to be a part of.

See you in the virtual skies!