Hong Kong operator JetSolution announces the start of flights to Bhutan. According to JetSolution managing director Kennis Fu, Bhutan is becoming one of the most popular destinations for Chinese travellers, especially for Buddhist pilgrims. He estimates that a five-day charter to Bhutan on a turnkey basis will cost $ 85,000.
JetSolution currently has one Embraer Legacy 600 in the United States (N888JK). Last month, the business jet received a new salon that cost the company $ 635,000 retrofit that features Hermès textiles and toiletries, Christofle crystal-ware, and Wedgwood by Vera Wang silverwares.
Mr. Fu pointed out that the company is the only Chinese operator who has exclusive rights to fly his plane to Paro Airport, thanks to a personal arrangement with the government of Bhutan. This helps reduce operating costs and thus allows JetSolution to offer customers more competitive prices. In addition, in accordance with PART 135 FAA, Legacy 600 pilots are also certified and trained to fly in difficult conditions at Paro Airport and undergo regular training on simulators.
One of the most closed states in the world – the kingdom of Bhutan – is taking the first steps to develop business aviation in the country. Despite the fact that the government of Bhutan strictly regulates visiting the country by foreign tourists, the demand for flights is growing from year to year. This is not a cheap pleasure at all, but most of the travellers prefer to fly into the country on their own business jets.
The only international airport is Paro International Airport – it is also the most difficult to carry out flights in the world despite the fact that it has a fairly good infrastructure, which makes it possible to receive relatively “big” ships like BBJ / AACJ. According to the aviation regulations of the country, an additional crew member (navigator) is required to carry out flights to the airport on board the aircraft, which is laying the route. And business jets are no exception. The airport was opened in 1983 and is located 6 km. away from the city of Paro and 55 km. from the capital, Thimphu.
It is located at an altitude of 2,237 meters in a narrow mountain valley, on the banks of the Paro river of the same name. From all sides, the airport is surrounded by sharp peaks of the Himalayas up to 5,500 meters high. Climatic features and difficult terrain make it difficult for the airport: due to constant winds, takeoffs and landings are carried out mainly in one direction, the south. When climbing and descending, there is a strong turbulence. The airport has no light-signal equipment and works only during daylight hours: from 6.00 to 17.00 or according to the actual sunrise and sunset. Pilots use a visual approach scheme. The passenger terminal, like all other buildings in Bhutan, is built in the national style. On average, the annual passenger turnover of the airport is a little over 30 thousand people.