Airport cuts deal with ACL to manage schedule

| 08/11/2021 | 71 Comments
Cayman News Service
Owen Roberts International Airport runway

(CNS): The Cayman Islands Airports Authority (CIAA) has awarded a contract to Airport Coordination Limited (ACL) that officials said will help the airport manage flight arrivals and capacity constraints to prevent overcrowding. The airport slot coordinator will analyse runway, ramp and terminal safety capacity at all levels of the passenger process, as the country moves towards the return of tourism.

In 2018 Owen Roberts International Airport processed 1.3 million passengers and 26,000 movements, and at peak times even the expanded facility was struggling with too many flights all arriving within a short timeframe at weekends.

CIAA Chief Airport Operations Officer Wayne DaCosta said, “Increased air connectivity will be an important driver of the global economic recovery, and our partnership with ACL will help to ensure the highest standards and parameters are met and maintained with a view to providing our guests with world class airport services and delivering an excellent airport experience.”

ACL is an independent airport slot coordinator, providing services and data collection services to 46 airports across four continents and coordinating 3.9 million flights carrying over 600 million passengers per year from its offices in the UK, New Zealand and the United Arab Emirates.

Neil Garwood, ACL’s Chief Executive Officer, said the firm would be bringing a long track record of slot management expertise as ORIA seeks to make best use of its capacity. “At Airport Coordination Limited we aim to achieve the best solutions in a fair and independent way, and the team are looking forward to a long and successful relationship with Owen Roberts International Airport and all its partners,” he said.

Details of the cost of the contract or when it was awarded have not been revealed and no minutes have been posted on the airport website relating to the authority’s board meetings for six months. But CNS has submitted questions on the request for proposals for these services, which are basic to the fundamental management of the airport and were previously handled by the CIAA itself.

More commercial airlines are set to return to the Cayman Islands after 20 November, when quarantine restrictions are lifted for vaccinated passengers but numerous checks and other protocols will still need to be carried out at the airport. This will increase the potential for congestion and intensify the need for managed staggered flights.

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Category: Business, Transport

Comments (71)

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  1. Hypocrisy in Paradise says:

    Yes dear 623pm but we need the rules to be followed with a tendering process and not the opaque business dealings we see going on here now by the UK during this pandemic or shall it the Banana Republic you keep crying about 🍌🍌😭

  2. george says:

    You all can’t see what is happening, ever since the lockdown a lot of political things at the airport and only BA allowed to fly in.
    Tarmac expansion towards the east for BA Planes, changes to the flow of traffic with no drop off or pickup the usual way.
    And now a UK company to run the airport

  3. Anonymous says:

    Cramming all the daily flights into 3 tight operational windows doesn’t help on crowding. CAL and CIAA also seem to enjoy obstructing other connecting airline traffic during these peak times exercising their priority runway clearance. In most cases they don’t need to have their single-leg passengers flying at those times at all.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Right so you going to dictate to MIA ect. when they can take off. anyone write excel macros in that place or are you to busy trying to find ways to inconvenience passengers.

    • anon says:

      and what happens with the other 300 plus facilitated airports worldwide ?? Does MIA over rule everything ? or JFK ? or ORD ? get a grip !!!

  5. Cayman C O N spiracy says:

    This whole thing was a set up! from start to finish when we had a breach from the individual who walk from curbside to Airside during construction work conveniently, then the UK hiring by Ppm Anderson during lockdown now we see drop off lock off and those UK nationals running around George Town harbour front doing the Survey. Aaaaah Roper your re colonilization plan is going well eh ? But dear governor we need you to follow the rules you too as Mr Johnson has rightly stated we want to see the Tendering process for ACL or shall we have the old adage where we have two kinds of Morality side by side one which we preach but do Not practice our another which we practice but seldom preach . Finally Mr Premier you need to fire your brother in law if he is not capable of doing his job !

  6. Anonymous says:

    “ACL’s Chief Executive Officer, said the firm would be bringing a long track record of slot management expertise as ORIA seeks to make best use of its capacity”

    Translated means ‘Give me your watch and I will tell you what time it is’

  7. Anonymous says:

    Probably not a bad idea since they can’t even seem to be able to schedule the Brac flight in a different one than the Tampa one currently.

  8. Anonymous says:

    The only really bad congestion was basically Saturdays because they had all the flights between 11 and 4. This is because it is convenient for the airlines for a flight to leave Toronto, Charlotte, NY, Detroit, Atlanta, Chicago etc at 9 am, do a turn and have the crew home the same day by 5 or 6pm. No overnights, and convenient for passenger to book a week long vacation.

    There isn’t really a need for a third party contract here. Any competent person who works for the airport could figure out how to move a couple of these flights to alleviate congestion. They just didn’t know how to say no, so as all too typical they are wasting money.

    Then again these are the same guys who put in the insane rule of no stopping in front of the terminal for some fake “security” reason and can’t get working parking machines. They’ve already proved their incompetence ten times over.

    • anon says:

      You couldnt say no because the airlines did not have to listen and obey !! Now they do because IATA agree that the airport should be facilitated and they are the experts in relation to passenger convenience

      • Anonymous says:

        Landing slots aren’t going to be the problem as United. Delta, AA, SW etc. aren’t flying here until at least late February. If ACL gets too aggressive the airlines will just tell them to piss off until 2023 tourist season. In the meantime fix the parking ticket machines to take Cc’s – what it been five years? LMAO😬😬😬

        • anon says:

          which is why if you read the process on the ACL website that schedules for summer 2022 are already being facilitated !!. Its nice to be proactive

  9. anon says:

    Sorry your wrong. Flow control is different to scheduled facilitation. Flow Control is only used at time of adverse weather or an incident and is an “airspace” term not an airport term. Flow control is used to protect airspace capacity

  10. Anonymous says:

    Before we could even reopen this useless government changed policies and let Covid back in. Now we are under a travel advisory, do you really think we are going to have a massive tourism rebound anytime soon ? Not likely. PACT couldn’t even manage a simple preparation exercise much less a full reopening. Yes we don’t have many in hospital but my point is if PACTs plan was to ease restrictions and allow community spread they could have at least warned us. Smh sick sick government full of narcissistic know it alls (and two of them have criminal convictions).

  11. Anonymous says:

    This is just CIAA passing the buck to ACL to eliminate the congestion on Saturday arrivals. CIAA doesn’t have the balls to tell American, Delta, Southwest etc. that your slot time is 10:30AM or 4PM to spread out arrivals. ACL now does the dirty work of arm twisting or denying slot time arrivals. The airlines then as the Cayman slots don’t match up with their domestic connections cut flights or just quit flying to Cayman. The traveling public probably then is forced to overnight both ways to meet flight times adding more costs to an already expensive vacation. The business plan is quite simple, airlines get mad, cut flights to the Island, no congestion on Saturday – Problem solved.

  12. Anonymous says:

    From past experience working at CAA and also CIAA, I know this process – it is called “flow control”. It is implemented at most busy airports in the world and should have been implemented at ORIA years ago.

    BUT.. successive Ministers of Aviation (particularly beginning around the late 1990s when our local traffic started increasing) refused to allow the airport management to implement flow control. Because it dictates arrival slots (especially). The political argument was always “we can’t tell the airlines when they can or can’t come! Then they won’t come at all”. Yet, ALL the same airlines were subject to flow-control when they went back to their airports in USA, Canada and UK! The only airline which CIAA was successfully allowed to implement was JetBlue, that’s why they are the very first international arrival of the day. By then, pax lines were queuing back to aircraft doors.

    It is encouraging that the political road-block to a sensible and normal airport management tool is now removed.
    However, the present COO recently trained for that job in the UK, how come he does not know how to implement flow control? Especially with only a few flights now?? Absurd that CIAA has to hire a consultant for this!! As another poster said ” a nine year old with a spreadsheet can do this”.

    CIAA has simply become another OfReg – a money pit for public money to be wasted by washed-up ex-FLOW employees who were forced to take early retirement!!!

    • anon says:

      Sorry your wrong. Flow control is different to scheduled facilitation. Flow Control is only used at time of adverse weather or an incident and is an “airspace” term not an airport term. Flow control is used to protect airspace capacity

  13. Anonymous says:

    Does ACL do parking ticket machines too? Asking for a friend.

  14. Anonymous says:

    I don’t care who the CEO is, who are the directors and shareholders of ACL?

  15. Anonymous says:

    The real important question is what is the final cost of the terminal construction, We should know by now and how can the CEO and the Board have accepted the building as being complete and now some two years after accepting the building as complete we do not know what the final cost was. Last i heard it was some 50% + overrun on the projected cost.

    • Say it like it is. says:

      9.10am I have asked this question on CNS four times over the last 18 months and recd a deafening silence.How can Mr Anderson get away with this, he is the highest paid SAGC employee in the country, yet he has a proven record of incompetence. He announced the total closure of the airport, causing all international airlines serving ORIA to amend their published flight schedules and then a week before it was to come into effect, changed his mind. Within weeks of the theoretical completion of the terminal expansion/renovation he announced it would need a further expansion as future growth had been underestimated.
      Only in Cayman where there has, and always will be, zero accountability in the public sector.

    • Anonymous says:

      Ask Moses Kirkconnell Stran Bodden and the steering committee

  16. Chris Johnson says:

    I presume it has a local companies control law licence. Who is the local partner ?

    • Anonymous says:

      Probably doesn’t need one as the work is done off island and is really not much different than using any other service provider.

      Such as a hedge fund administrator in Halifax or Dublin or Butterfield/CNB using Visa to process transactions.

    • Anonymous says:

      You raise a good point here Chris. The public have a right to know.

      • anonymous says:

        Looks like you are not popular with some for raising some very good points. I guess they do not have enquiring minds. Keep up your work Chris we respect you for it.

  17. Anonymous says:

    You are about to be deluged with tourists.

    • Anonymous says:

      Nobody is coming at least until February/March as the airlines have set their schedules. Looking forward to the peace and quiet until then.

  18. Anonymous says:

    That sort of contract is for major hubs with hundreds of movements a day not a small island with a single runway and a few movements a day. More public money down the toilet because of incompetence. For goodness sake a high school kid with a spreadsheet could do this!

    • anon says:

      did you ever travel in 2019 !! and saw the congestion ?

    • No says:

      I agree, seems like a contract for one of the boys companies. I guess the cost is going to result in increased fees shoved on the public. This is unnecessary at this time and should raise some red flags and calls for open disclosure and transparency.

    • anon says:

      name a caymanian school kid who is good at excel formulas ?? I havnt found one yet

      • Anonymous says:

        You just had to polarise it and put ‘Caymanian’ in there didn’t you? Oh, and just because YOU haven’t found one doesn’t mean anything. Plenty of bright kids out there.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Typical CI government practice. Elevate unqualified but somehow connected individuals to critical posts, and then hire consultants to do all the work. Just wait until the consultants try to factor in favouritism for CAL into their “fair and independent” software algorithms.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Incompetent leadership at the CIAA must be replaced now.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Anywhere reject C&W rejects are all they do is hire consultants.

  22. Anonymous says:

    So the CIAA hires this company when there are only 3 or 4 airlines coming to Cayman?

    Maybe this company could also arrange with them how to get rid of that stupid system they have for drop off and pick up because that will definitely cause further delays one flights start to pick up..I cannot imagine one long week end or a peak Saturday and we still have that foolishness in place.

    This is the same CIAA that built a one storey airport at twice the budget with no jet ways, no covered canopies from the rain when people are entering or leaving the building and yes the one that closed off the the curbside drop off/pick up lines.

    • Big Bobo In West Bay says:

      What? We really have so many planes arriving at our airport?

      Give me a break. The airport is only really busy on the weekends.

      Seems to me a total waste of money.

    • anon says:

      and what about the 10 airlines that will be operating from december onwards all wanting to arrive at 12 noon on a saturday !!

  23. Anonymous says:

    To reduce traffic congestion there should be immediate implementation of all fatties on island have to bicycle around instead of drive in a car. Reduce pollution and their risk of covid death from preexisting conditions.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Still pulled up and dropped off at MIA right out the front?
    Why cant we do that?

  25. C'Mon Now! says:

    The airport simply isn’t that busy other than weekend afternoons when they have generally scheduled too many flights.

    World Class, World Class

  26. MERVYN CUMBER says:

    This is an absolute joke! Airfares have doubled, so the expected rush should be minimum. CIAA are reacting as if a major hurricane is about to hit. More wasted dollars from the “public chest”!

  27. Anonymous says:

    The previous lot screwed up the schedule for many years so it’s good to see that the new team are using the opportunity to start afresh with a specialist firm. Hopefully this will provide a better experience for travellers.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Those that cant contract it out.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Why can’t the airport do that themselves?
    Leftover money ?

  30. Wasting Gov money says:

    Sounds like CIAA staff can not do their job.

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