Adult Website to Air Travel: OnlyFans Mogul Helps Launch New Transatlantic Airbus A380 Airline

Global Airlines wants to be a London-based long haul airline. They have an ex-Singapore Airlines Airbus A380 and say they have either a deal for three more A380s, or have them in their possession. Which one isn’t clear. They’ve talked up a 2024 launch, with daily service to New York and four times-weekly service to Los Angeles starting this summer. Now they say they plan to charter flights this year and operate scheduled service later. They claim they’ll serve “every continent.”

They announced an Amex partnership over the summer, but all that it seemed to be was that they would.. accept American Express? And they launched a Laurent Perrier partnership where they promised to serve top notch champagne in economy “if [they] can make it work” (they can’t). They’ve made themselves look silly.

Now, though, they have a new high profile investor – the co-founder and former Chief Operating Officer of OnlyFans Tom Stokely. He’s also joined the board of the airline.

Reportedly he first joined the advisory board of Global Airlines founder James Asquith’s ‘Holiday Swap’ booking site. Despite grand claims about the success and scale of that business, I have literally never come across anyone that’s listed their property there or successfully made and completed a booking. That seems odd to me.

According to a Global Airlines spokesperson,

“We expect to operate our first round of passenger services in the next 12 months. However, we, like many other companies in aviation, have encountered some delays with our partners and multiple supply chain issues which we continue to work around and find solutions to.”

Ultimately it isn’t the vaporware problem that stands in the way of making Global Airlines a reality. And I’m not sure whether adding an OnlyFans co-founder to the board of an aspiring airline increases or decreases their credibility? The problem is the fundamental business model of flying Airbus A380s as a startup.

  • Too big a plane. The challenge with flying large aircraft is that they’re great on routes where you can fill the planes at decent fares, since the biggest planes have the lowest cost per passenger to operate. You can fill a plane from Las Vegas to just about anywhere on a Sunday, but what about Wednesday? An Airbus A380 has proven to be too much capacity to fly every day. And this airline will be doing it without connecting traffic on either end. It’ll all be passengers from a secondary London airport to a single city.

  • Nowhere to go in the off-season. It’s easier to find places to send smaller planes in the off season. Transatlantic markets are hot in the summer, and dead in the winter. It’s one thing if you need to find somewhere that won’t burn cash with a narrowbody plane. Finding somewhere counter-seasonal to schedule an Airbus A380 is nearly impossible. There are just a handful of routes where this plane works, on certain days and times of the year.

  • Too small an airline. It’s also hard to be a small airline, with just a single frequency in a market. Different customers want to fly at different times, and airlines with more flight options earn a disproportionate share of business. Those larger carriers with more flights also can give passengers greater comfort about backup options should their plans change, or should there be weather or mechanical cancellations.

  • Can’t wrestle away loyal flyers especially premium flyers. Those large airlines also have an existing customer base, and in the case of major carriers not called American, they usually have big corporate contracts that are tough to shift business away from on a one-off basis. New carriers also tend to have difficulty getting into the most desirable airports, so they might fly from Gatwick or even Luton in London.

    There’s a graveyard littered with airlines who saw a big market like London – New York and said “if we can just get 1% of that market, we’ll make money.” Remember EOS, MaxJet, and SilverJet?

  • Won’t have a meaningful cost advantage and not just because it’ll be hard to fill an Airbus A380 every day, year round (so the more expensive aircraft gets amortized across lower passenger numbers). The cost advantage of low cost carriers and new airlines isn’t as significant when flying long haul compared to doing short trips. And they need to amortize their fixed costs over a lot of seats, one to four aircraft is going to be tough.

I love to see the aspiration of offering a truly quality product across all cabins. The Airbus A380 is a fantastic aircraft (especially in premium cabins) from a passenger perspective. And if they’re able to launch they’ll help drive down fares across the Atlantic. But that’s not great for their business and whether they can figure out a way to minimize losses each winter to make it to the following summer.

Maybe they’ll generate previously untapped revenue from inflight wifi livestreams. A luxurious onboard product like suites with doors and an onboard shower could find real synergies in the OnlyFans world.

(HT: Enilria)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. A famous man once said that it’s easy to make a small fortune in the airline business. You just need to start with a large one.

  2. Gary: Practical questions please. 1. How many pilots would they have to employ (with downtime etc. would seem like a lot). 2. Where are they going to get them?

  3. Well, Global Airlines is plane porn for Airbus fans, who can’t get enough of the A380, so I guess there’s some experience to leverage here.

  4. So you get to meet and “know” your FA’s before the flight at OnlyFans I assume? Asking for a friend.

  5. Continued proof that there is no shortage of crackpots in the airline business – however this has to rank as one of the more ridiculous.
    Hmm, Summer ‘24 and yet neither licensed or on sale as of 15th January.

  6. Have to wonder if this has nothing to do with the airline business and everything to do with using the airline business as a tool to scam “investors “ ……money will change hands and it will go somewhere…..these guys sound like they are very adept at conning people and little else. As PT Barnum and Donald Trump have proven, a sucker is born every minute.

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