Demand for air charters on key routes to and from the Middle East, North America and worldwide has exploded since the shutdown of much of Europe’s air space following last week’s volcanic eruptions in Iceland, according to air cargo carrier Chapman Freeborn.
Forwarders and shippers are willing to fly from almost anywhere in mainland Europe, the charterer said, even when it requires trucking much longer distances than normal, for example to airports in Spain or Bulgaria. Chapman Freeborn is seeing requests to move freight including general and automotive cargo, oil and gas pieces and perishables.
“There is going to be a huge backlog and high demand for charters even when airspace reopens,” predicted Pierre Van Der Stichele, Chapman Freeborn’s director of business development. “Freighter aircraft availability is going to be a major issue. There was limited capacity prior to these events, so clearing the backlog quickly is going to be a challenge for the industry.”
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