Charter without compromise
Chrono Aviation, the fastest-growing airlines in the province, routinely flies its clientele across Canada and into the United States.
Based out of Montreal, Quebec City and Rimouski, Chrono Aviation offers luxury charter service with safety as the top priority. After all, Vincent Gagnon, President of Chrono Aviation, has over two decades of experience flying commercial heavy airliners (Airbus and Boeing) aircrafts with the highest safety standards in aviation.
“Having flown commercially for several years in the northern wilderness, as long as International and overseas, means that I have an intimate knowledge of safety requirements,” says Gagnon. “And I also know the importance of professionalism and stellar service.”
Even before starting Chrono Aviation, Vincent was dedicating himself to safe access to remote locations with Aerotek Aviation Inc., which services the high performance (Turbine only) amateur-built aviation market. Add to this the experience of Chrono Aviation Vice President, Dany Gagnon, the well-known TV and Radio personality and commercial pilot, and the recipe for success was struck.
Founded in 2013, Chrono Aviation quickly took off. “We started with a single Pilatus PC-12, single-engine turboprop passenger and cargo aircraft,” says V.Gagnon. Four years later, “We are the biggest expansion in the history of the province for aviation companies.”
Its team has grown from two to 60 employees (Including Waas Avionic, where they perform major avionics upgrades) and its fleet has grown from one to 11 planes. Included in that fleet are six PC-12s, available in executive, commuter and cargo configurations. With its signature sleek flat black paint job, Chrono Aviation also has two Beechcraft 1900Ds, the American-made, twin-engine pressurized turboprop aircraft built for flying above the inclement Canadian weather. Rounding out the fleet is a Bombardier Dash 8, twin-engine, medium-range, turboprop airliners, and a Falcon 50EX.
“We have $2.5- to $7-million-dollar airplanes, and then we invest heavily into their interiors and state of the art avionics.” Chrono Aviation will have the only Dash 8 with 3D vision Universal Avionics Glass cockpit Upgrade in the country. The aircraft, which can carry up to 37 passengers, will be operational in May, 2017.
“It is our commitment to safety and technology and that brings customers,” says Gagnon, “and that is why we are able to reinvest substantially in the company, and create jobs in Quebec.”
The team also quietly supports children’s philanthropic endeavors, and sponsors local events and charities as need becomes apparent, including partnering with the popular television show LaVoix and participate in many big sports events. Chrono Aviation decided to offer a special Christmas gift to the Air Cadets of 629 Kiwanis-Sillery Squadron. On Sunday, December 21, seven cadets aged 12 to 18, pilots and future pilots, had the chance to take part in a training flight aboard a Chrono Aviation Pilatus PC-12.
And the industry is watching. Recently, Chrono Aviation was awarded the Vision Trophy in the category “Emerging Visionary Enterprise” by the Chaudière-Appalaches and Québec City Chamber of Commerce and Chartered Accountants. It is also nominated for National Bank’s SME Awards in recognition of exceptional contributions to the Centre and Eastern Townships of Quebec, and finalist for the well-known Fideides award by the chamber of commerce in the Province.
Chrono Aviation’s business philosophy is centred on contributing to the local economy. As such, the company invests in employee training, safety and professional fulfilment by starting iFly College, its aviation training centre. Described as “more than just a flight school”, iFly pilots come out with superior flying skills, confidence, and experience. According to Gagnon, the school offers complete training programs ranging from private pilot to commercial pilot. Unlike other flight schools who target volume and rentability by training as many pilots as possible, iFly works with the most serious and ambitious candidates, striving for quality, not quantity.
The airline carries thousands of passengers each year, and considers it important to contribute to the training and hiring of young pilots. “We make a big point of hiring pilots from our region, to give back,” says Gagnon. “We are francophone so it is important that our team speak French and English. Our team, all of our pilots, are very dedicated to our mission of utmost safety and impeccable service.”
Despite exponential growth in aviation, the Chrono Aviation team has its feet planted firmly on the ground. Gagnon says their success is due to hard work, long hours, and a dedication to doing things right. With many exciting things in the pipeline, Chrono Aviation will keep carving new paths for flight in Canada.