The Ministry of Defence has chartered aircraft to move millitary personnel between Kabul and Birmingham International Airport.

Lasting 8 days, the use of charter aircraft will cost £1.1 million.

The first charter will last from the 18th of June 2021 to the 21st of June 2021 and cost £740,000.

The second charter will last from the 22nd of June 2021 to the 27th of June 2021 and cost £375,000.

The contract award notice for both the first and second charter states that the firm ‘Air Charter Service’ has won the tenders.

On their website, thre firm explain that they have experience in arranging cargo aircraft charters to hostile environments.

“We have considerable expertise in arranging cargo aircraft charters to destinations that are difficult to reach, whether that be either an isolated location or a hostile environment. ACS also has extensive experience in mass evacuations requiring multiple aircraft to move survivors out of affected areas rapidly. We can deliver essential items such as humanitarian aid, industrial materials, consumer goods and much more.”

As a brokerage, Air Charter Service does not own any aircraft, but arranges helicopter, private jet, commercial airline, and cargo aircraft charters ranging from the massive Antonov AN-225, Airbus A330 and down to the BAE 146.

You can read more about their fleet here.

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Pacman27
Pacman27
14 days ago

why aren’t we using the voyagers for this, seems a big waste of money.

isn’t the PFI meant to give us the ability to ramp up if need be

Nic
Nic
14 days ago
Reply to  Pacman27

If it is a Military operation why are they not using Brize Norton as the receiving location for the Military personnel and equipment.

Darren hall
Darren hall
14 days ago
Reply to  Nic

Birmingham / Newcastle and Prestwick have always been used as trooping flights when dealing with unit moves.

Nic
Nic
14 days ago
Reply to  Darren hall

Thanks didn’t know that

Jason Holmes
Jason Holmes
12 days ago
Reply to  Darren hall

Ive been in the military 20 years, I’ve never flown out of B’ham / Newcastle on passenger routes, even when civvi chartered

Darren hall
Darren hall
11 days ago
Reply to  Jason Holmes

The RAF Movements Logistics trade operate a small unit known as the Airport unit. look it up.

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
14 days ago
Reply to  Pacman27

We have done this many times before. And yes the Americans it too, despite having a very large transport fleet.

James Fennell
James Fennell
14 days ago
Reply to  Pacman27

Voyagers would cost a lot lot more in operational costs than a simple charter for such a mundane task. Better keep busy them for operations.

Pacman27
Pacman27
14 days ago
Reply to  James Fennell

not sure about that James

after all we are paying for 5 or so voyagers that we don’t use. If we are never going to use them then why have a PFI for 14 if we will never use them.

Even worse I think some are already configured for charter flights, so really does not seem good VFM.

James Fennell
James Fennell
14 days ago
Reply to  Pacman27

The point is that we don’t pay for them when they are not used I think. We pay more when we take them into service, not to mention the running costs involved in providing addtional aircrews and operational costs when we put one into service – also probably not an option in the deal to bring one back into the fleet for a one off job. We just sent one to Qatar as part of that deal I think.

simon alexander
simon alexander
14 days ago

the losses outweighed the gains, bring them home.

Jack
Jack
14 days ago

What gains ? The Afghan house of cards is about to tumble. What a tragic waste of life.

BB85
BB85
13 days ago
Reply to  Jack

Big time, I hope there is not a genocide once the US completely pulls out. When the Taliban take over I’m curious if they will keep to themselves or become a terrorist hub again.

JohnG
JohnG
14 days ago

Would love to know the cost per flight.

RobW
RobW
14 days ago
Reply to  JohnG

Given that it is 7.5 hours away I can’t see there being more than 1 flight a day. If that is the case then there would be 8 flights at an average cost of £137,500.

RobW
RobW
14 days ago
Reply to  JohnG

of course I have just assumed we chartered just one aircraft so who knows!

JohnG
JohnG
13 days ago
Reply to  RobW

Cheers Rob, interesting speculation!

Rogbob
Rogbob
14 days ago

Must be very limited threat now at Kabul, unusual to use charter to move pax in/out of actual theatre, unless they’re just doing a halfway house and its C17/A400 for the Afghan leg as has been the case for years.

heroic
heroic
14 days ago
Reply to  Rogbob

Lock Down ?

dan
dan
14 days ago

Let’s hope the West has learned their lesson regarding nation building once and for all. You can’t force Western ways on everyone.

grizzler
grizzler
14 days ago
Reply to  dan

Theres a difference between ‘forcing Western ways on everyone’ and dismantling a rogue state that houses terrorism like Afganistan was. I personally think they should have done more to build a demorcratic nation and I doubt it will last – not when Pakistan gets involved.

Klonkie
Klonkie
13 days ago
Reply to  dan

Don’t forget the deck was against the coalition to starts with, that is Pakistan effectively giving the Taliban sanctuary. I can’t help but feel the average Afghan (particularly women) will be more comfortable with “Western ways” vs what the Taliban offers. Just an observation.

DaveyB
DaveyB
12 days ago
Reply to  Klonkie

Totally agree, Pakistan and to some extent Iran had the Taliban’s back, even though they have their own issues in NE Pakistan. A good example I can state is based on what was happening in the small Afghan towns of Bahramcha and Bremen and probably still is since we pulled out. This is on the very tip of Southern Helmand bordering Pakistan. Both are Opium/Heroin nodes, that the drug is delivered to and processed, then sent on its merry way. As part of my job we had to “raid” these towns destroying factories and burning the drugs. We did this… Read more »

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
14 days ago

Interesting that the contractor ACS does not own any aircraft – it is a brokerage business. Why can’t the RAF movers engage civilian aircraft directly and save the (no doubt very fat) ACS management fee?

Frank62
Frank62
12 days ago

Big blunder withdrawing from Afghanistan, leaving the Taliban to take over. On a parr with leaving the Kurds to hang out to dry when the Turks invaded. Repression seems to be advancing worldwide.