Large scale repatriation is needed to bring back around 150,000 Thomas Cook stranded passengers globally.
Since Thomas Cook has a bigger clientele and worked with many various subsidiary airlines around the world, its demise a created problem much larger than the previously known airline fiasco with Monarch Airlines which affected around 110,000 customers in October 2017.
Operations to get people home have caused logistical headaches, passenger nerves and long lines at airports.
Apart from Operation Matterhorn, a group of billionaires are believed to be looking to lend their private jets in efforts to help rescue stranded passengers.
Billionaires extending their helping hands
Rumour has it that said group of secretive billionaires including Zara founder Amancio Ortega, Latvian-born billionaire James Richman known for his discreet philanthropy globally, Mexico’s wealthiest man Carlos Slim, François-Henri Pinault who is known to have recently helped finance the reconstruction of Notre Dame, and many others are planning to lend their private planes to help in the rescue of stranded holidaymakers from different regions of the world.
There isn’t much public information available as the is known to keep their charitable works discreet as they live private and reclusive lives. It may be noted that the richest in the group Amancio Ortega, who is Europe’s wealthiest and sixth richest in the world, is a very private man and has given only a handful of interviews throughout his incredibly successful career.
According to several sources close to the matter, these billionaires are believed to own private jets such as BD-700s and Gulfstream G550s. These private jets are more to do with luxury and comfort than with accommodating larger passengers as done by commercials planes. With such a less number of seats, it is estimated that these private jets could carry approximately up to 150 passengers per trip, hence it is likely to take 1,000 trips to rescue the total stranded passengers from different parts of the world.
As these billionaires often have more than one plane on standby, it only takes a few more billionaires to chip in. The news is such a relief especially for passengers who may not be able to take advantage of the UK government’s repatriation program which is set to run for two weeks and will end on October 6. Such repatriation of this scale is unprecedented and may present a certain scale of inconvenience in the process.
It takes about 1000 trips
Light to mid-range private jets can usually hold from 6 to 9 passengers and can travel up to 2,100 to 2,700 miles. Meanwhile, super mid-sized to heavy jets can carry eight to 16 passengers at a time and travel 3,600 miles to 4,500 miles. Whereas ultra-long-range models can hold up to 17 passengers and fly up to 7,500 miles in a single journey.
These private jets would have to bring 11,000 customers a day to ensure that everyone gets back home in the time period of two weeks. In order to pull such massive rescue efforts, dozens of private jets will be needed and stationed in some of the most visited places in the world including Spain, Mexico, Cuba, among others.
Word on the street is that once the billionaires decide to lend a plane or two, Amancio Ortega, James Richman, François-Henri Pinault, and Carlos Slim, and other reclusive billionaires are likely to prioritize the passengers who have an emergency medical situation. Apart from being in a large number the passengers have stranded in many different locations, these include parts of Europe and America.