Kentucky Air-Taxi Operator To Launch This Summer

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This century's air-taxi model has had its ups and downs -- a few new companies are thriving, while others have already come and gone, or never got started. But now another new player is ready to take its chances -- YourJet, based in Louisville, Ky., announced this week that it expects to start booking flights this summer. The company will offer per-seat, on-demand service to airports within 700 miles of Louisville aboard a Diamond DA42 Twin Star, with Diamond D-Jets expected to join the line next year. The company has said it hopes to offer competitive prices flying the single-engine D-Jet with a single pilot, saving on fuel and labor costs. YourJet founder Todd House is a pilot and anesthesiologist who lives in Louisville. "YourJet returns valuable time to travelers who have been bound by airlines' hub-and-spoke systems throughout the country," he said this week. "This is a cost-effective, safe, and highly convenient mode of air travel ... and we lead you right to the plane with no luggage hassles or security checks."

Todd House is also an organizer of the Thielert Engine Owners Group, which is working to deal with the fallout of the financial problems at Thielert, which provides Diamond's diesel engines. An update from Diamond, dated Monday and posted at the group's site, says that the company is "aggressively pursuing" certification of Lycoming engines for its DA42 twin-engine aircraft and at the same time, "aggressively pursuing" certification of its own Austro diesel engines for both the DA42 and the single-engine DA40.