Valley International Airport Now Offering Ground Handling Service to Airlines
Ground Services Department strategically positioned as a unique competitive differentiator for VIA– Valley International Airport (VIA) is pleased to announce it is now offering above and below wing, ground handling service for airlines. The first airline to take advantage of the airport’s ground handling service was Sun Country Airlines effective Oct. 1, 2012, with Republic Airways (Harrah’s casino charters) following suit effective Jan. 1, 2013.
“Sun Country Airlines has enjoyed a close relationship with Valley International Airport for more than 16 years and we continue to be impressed with their excellent service,” Sun Country Airlines Director of Operations Jerry Fuller said. “With 39 percent more Sun Country flights to and from Harlingen planned for 2013, we look forward to streamlining and creating efficiencies by using VIA’s ground handling service.”
VIA launched its Ground Services Department as part of a strategic business decision to offer carriers more options when considering flights to Harlingen. Department services include bilingual staff to assist with passenger check in and boarding, dedicated ticket counter space, and available gates with Jetway, and aircraft ground power. In addition to the regular features offered at the ticket counter, VIA installed an LED TV screen behind the counter to promote airline specials, flight arrival information, and weather at the destination, among other pertinent information.
VIA Marketing Director José Mulet, who oversees the Ground Services Department, has put together a vigorous training program for all department employees to ensure the best service, highlighting health and safety issues that comply with International Air Transport Association guidelines. Additional ongoing training is also coordinated with the carrier to improve and update current procedures.
“The Ground Services Department at VIA works closely with carriers to provide seamless service,” Mulet said. “Our goal is to exceed our clients’ expectations, keeping safety as the top priority at all times.”
VIA handles Sun Country Airlines’ scheduled service, as well as their casino charter flights in and out of Harlingen. The VIA Ground Services Department can support Regional Jet to 737-800 passenger aircraft. Republic Airways operates Embraer 190 aircraft; Sun Country operates 737-700/800 aircraft. Additional information about VIA’s Ground Services Department is available by calling José Mulet at 956-430-8605 or GHS@flythevalley.com.