IAG Cargo completed its 1,000th charter flight since March at the end of 2020.
The company introduced the new charter flights during the Covid-19 pandemic, utilising aircraft from the group that would, in normal times, not be available. A specialist team continues to manage the bespoke service, which IAG Cargo said “continues to play an essential role in keeping vital supplies moving around the world”.
The 1000th flight from London Heathrow to Los Angeles was on a 777-200 and included a shipment of e-commerce goods, which IAG Cargo said reflected the acceleration in growth of online retail.
Some 750 of the charter services in 2020 were used to transport thousands of tonnes of medical supplies including PPE, hospital equipment and Covid-19 testing kits. Other charters included fresh, perishable items and industrial supplies.
IAG Cargo’s chief commercial officer John Cheetham commented: “I’m extremely proud of the role IAG Cargo has played in transporting vital supplies to help the fight against Covid-19 and to keep the world’s cargo moving. We were committed to quickly providing solutions for our customers during these unprecedented circumstances. Charters have proved to be a popular solution, and we have seen increasing demand from customers and shippers for this tailored service.”
Cheetham continued: “Early in 2020, to provide that much needed extra capacity to deliver the logistics programmes of our customers we converted a number of aircraft into ‘preighters’, and more recently we have modified two further Iberia aircraft. These recent conversions are another example of our bespoke solutions for customers across the world.”