Though commercial airlines have seen an unprecedented decline in travelers during the pandemic, people do still want to fly, and private charter flight companies are making that happen, according to Nick Tarascio, CEO of Ventura Air Services.
Ventura, an aviation services company based in Farmingdale, is expanding to serve an increase in travelers who want privacy and safety.
“Commercial aviation is on life support, and it’s harder to get flights,” Tarascio said. “Many people are leveraging the benefits of charter flights because of health concerns, the overall convenience, and the exceptional experience we offer.”
Ventura has added several new jets and will have a total of eight aircrafts flying across the Americas and to the Caribbean by the end of the year. Some new jets hold eight passengers and others hold 10. Next year, the service will purchase additional aircraft and hire more staff.
At the height of the pandemic, air travel had declined across the board, and Ventura partnered with New York-area hospitals to make organ transplant flights. Now, Ventura’s business has been restored and seen an increased demand.
Tarascio announced the expansion, which is expected to double Ventura in size and add 25 employees to its 52-person staff, at an event at Ventura’s headquarters. Several community members joined him, including Joseph Vitulli, board member of Long Island Business Aviation Association, from Honeywell Aerospace; Richard Causin, of the New York State Department of Transportation; Margaret Conklin, of the New York State Department of Transportation; Babylon Town Councilmen DuWayne Gregory and Anthony Manetta; Joseph Garcia, of the Farmingdale Chamber of Commerce; Imran Ansari, of Discover Long Island; Dave Fattizzo, of the Long Island Association and John Schneidawin, of the Suffolk County Development of Economic Development.
“Private aviation is an important sector on Long Island and a vital part of the regional economy,” Tarascio said. “I am very optimistic about the industry’s growth, as well as our vision for expansion and providing more options to our customers.”