Florida Regional Airline Faces VLJ Competition
Gulfstream International, a regional airline based in Florida with no affiliation with business aircraft maker Gulfstream Aerospace, operates a fleet of Embraer and Beech twin turboprops in scheduled airline service throughout the Sunshine State. But with DayJet about to debut its Eclipse 500 air-taxi service on the same turf, Gulfstream is worried that it will lose traffic, Aviation Week reported on Wednesday. DayJet plans to fly Eclipse 500 very light jets from five bases in Florida, with on-demand, per-seat fares of $1 to $4 per mile. According to an initial public offering statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission late last week, Gulfstream International warned potential investors that if DayJet or similar outfits are successful, they could drain off passengers and revenues. Start-up air-taxi DayJet plans to begin operations to three Florida cities now served by Gulfstream -- Gainesville, Tallahassee and Pensacola -- as well as to Lakeland and Boca Raton. DayJet will soon have 10 Eclipse 500s in its fleet and has said that service will begin later this or early next month. Ed Iacobucci, founder and CEO of DayJet, has previously noted that his company will not so much compete with those flying the airlines as with those making time-consuming trips by car.