Amphibious aircraft are unique assets that can provide unparalleled access to landing areas such as harbors, lakes and rivers far from local airports. Whether you have a waterfront home, a private island, a secluded resort, or a luxury yacht, a seaplane can deliver you to your door almost anywhere in the Northeast.
These aircraft are unique in another way. The skill sets required to operate, pilot, and maintain seaplanes are quite different from those of other aircraft. Operational considerations include analyzing waterways for acceptable areas for takeoffs and landing; determining the accessibility of docks, beaches, or local launch availability; and a myriad of other factors more suited to a ship’s captain than your average aviation director. Pilots need to have excellent boating skills and a complete understanding of the effects of winds, currents, and tides on their aircraft during water operations. Maintenance personnel must develop new techniques for preventing and controlling corrosion. Since operations are frequently conducted in remote, inaccessible places, there is a need for a more stringent program for preventative maintenance, early replacement of life-limited items, and a suitable inventory of spare parts.
Even if you have a professional flight department operating an international business jet, they may not have the skill sets or the necessary interest to take on the operation of a such a unique airplane.
Cape Air manages several seaplanes for corporate and private owners. Many have their own flight departments or participate in quarter-share or time share programs for their long-range travel. Their amphibious aircraft provide short haul capacity to take them to private homes, yachts, or islands. Some of these aircraft are operated on a seasonal basis only, while others move from the summer season in the New York area to Florida, the Bahamas or the Caribbean in the winter. Cape Air’s flight and maintenance assets move with them.
Aircraft under Cape Air's management program are also eligible for inclusion in our charter management program. Several of our managed aircraft participate in this, receiving revenue for charter hours generated when the owner or owners are not using the aircraft. While revenue varies depending on the owner's use, charter income can significantly lower the overall annual cost of aircraft ownership.
Acquisition & Refurbishment
Even if you do not choose to have us manage your aircraft, the staff at Cape Air can act as your representative to help you select the aircraft best suited for your needs. We can help select the specifications of a new aircraft from start to finish to ensure you get the options best suited to an Amphibian and avoid those that are detrimental or unnecessary. For used aircraft, our operations personnel and maintenance technicians conduct pre-purchase surveys and inspections to ensure the aircraft is mechanically sound and in compliance with FAA regulations. If refurbishments or aircraft completions are in order, we have relationships with several vendors who can customize the exterior and interior of your aircraft and/or bring the avionics systems up to state-of-the-art standards.