Monthly Update

posted by Karl Desmond on 2021-10-06

Following on from this evening’s staff meeting, I felt it best to communicate some upcoming changes as soon as possible so any changes which are made swiftly will not come as a surprise.

I’d like to start with feedback from pilots, and how staff have responded to this.

• “Staff always in management channels so when we join the server, we can’t talk to you”
Our staff team are always working, even when flying. Sometimes, airline operations need to be discussed and it’s best to keep this private – we do recognise that this is not always the case and we will now make more of an effort to be available so please pop in and say hi!

• “Can we do events?”
Quite simply – yes! This is something we have tried before but we never received any interest. If you want events, let us know and we will make it happen. We recently became an official affiliate of VATSIM, so this certainly opens doors! We’re also looking into focus airports and landing competitions.

• “Is there a multiplayer server?”
An interesting question – many of you know I run my own private P3D server for pilots using V5.2 HF1, but there are tools which may allow us to expand to other versions/simulators. I will investigate this and provide an update at the right time.

• “Do you have discounts with developers?”
Yes, we do, though I don’t publicly advertise them. In the past I found that people who were not affiliated with ZipVirtual or Citrus Airways were using my discount codes, and this is not acceptable. If you are after a particular developer discount, please let me know and I will arrange this.

• “Why do some pilots have access to management channels and others don’t?”
To be honest, there is no perfectly valid reason to this, and as such, we have removed access to the management channels for non-management members.

I have two staff announcements to make.

Alexander Letch
First, our founding father, Alexander Letch, is back! I’m pleased to announce he has had enough of the chairman life and is returning as the CEO of Citrus Airways, ZipVirtual’s sister airline. Alex has lots of plans for Citrus Airways including new bases, new aircraft, and routes. I’m sure Alex will let everyone know when it’s all ready.

Aron Kruit
Second, our Transavia Lease Manager has received a promotion. I’d like to personally welcome Aron Kruit into the position of Hub Manager – in line with this, Aron will be responsible for opening our brand-new hub at Rotterdam, and will oversee it’s operations. He will continue to maintain our lease ops with Transavia as part of this. We’re extremely pleased with the dedication Aron has shown to ZipVirtual since joining us in the virtual skies and feel this position is not only well deserved, but also a job for which no person is better suited.

As mentioned above, Rotterdam will now become a ZipVirtual hub, our first in Europe. Alex, Scott, and I are currently shopping for aircraft and hope to be able to provide Aron with all the tools he needs to get up and running as soon as possible.

Tel Aviv
Due to zero use of the hub and our 737-900ER, I have decided to close our Tel Aviv base. This means that the routes from Tel Aviv will close at the same time. They will be pulled at the end of this week, so if you wish to fly them, please do so before Friday.

I’m pleased to announce that our Citrus textures for our X-Plane users are pretty much ready to roll out. There are a few small tweaks but so far, so good. We’ll update you when they’re live on the website.

Our Director of Airline Operations, Scott Hardy, has very kindly agreed to test all our new X-Plane liveries, which will not only provide a smoother roll-out, but a quicker one too!

As mentioned above, our single 737-900ER will leave Tel Aviv on Friday and re-position to Rotterdam, to give Aron one aircraft to launch our Dutch operations. In addition to this, I am also pleased to announce that we have secured one Airbus A320NEO, which will allow MSFS2020 users to join the airline. This will also join the fleet in Rotterdam later.

At present, there is no demand or need to add any further aircraft to our core fleet, so we remain as follows

• London Luton – 6 x737-800
• Rotterdam (Transavia) – 1x A320, 1x A321
• Rotterdam (Zip) 1x 737-900ER (Arriving Friday)

We’re currently recruiting pilots. We support a range of simulators and would like to see more users of other platforms. We’re currently drafting up incentives which will reward you recommending our airlines to new pilots. Information on this will be released at the appropriate time.

Fleet Manager
We’re currently recruiting for a Fleet Manager. We’d like prospective candidates to have a good understanding of real-world markets, how they operate, aircraft configurations and the ability to forward think. This would include assessing schedules, route demand and aircraft capacity. If you have the technical knowledge of today’s aircraft and feel that you’re a good fit, please contact the management team.

Lease Manager
Following the incredible start of our Transavia and Atlantic Airways leases, we’re on the lookout for another Lease Manager. This role will entail planning, detailing, and implementing a new wet lease, of either crew, aircraft or both. The management team will assist you every step of the way so if you have a good idea and would like to discuss this with us, please get in touch.

Lastly, the entire management team would like to thank everyone for our record month, September. We had a staggering 89 flights on the board, which for an airline of our size, is a huge achievement.

As always, if you have any questions, please email me or come say hi on the Discord server.