Cape Air sets date for debut of new Tecnam prop aircraft
Cape Air has set a date for the debut of its first new aircraft, the Tecnam P2012 Traveller, with plans to introduce it on flights to Vermont in December.
The Hyannis, Massachusetts-based regional carrier will begin flying the prop plane between its Boston Logan (BOS) base and Rutland (RUT) on Dec. 14, its website and Diio by Cirium schedules show. The first passenger flight is scheduled as Cape Air 52 from Rutland to Boston at 7 am local time, according to Cape Air's website.
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Seats are on sale on Cape Air's website. However, as with any new aircraft introduction, the date could slide due to any number of reasons. In October, the airline's training captain John Peck told TPG that entry-into-service was dependent on pilot training, which at the time was due to begin before the end of the month.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, while it had certified the Traveller, had yet to certify Cape Air's pilot training program.
Cape Air CEO Dan Wolf said at the same October event that the airline would debut the Traveller on the Boston-Rutland route before rolling it out to other routes subsidized under the U.S. Department of Transportation's Essential Air Service program. After the Boston EAS routes, Cape Air plans to begin flying the Traveller from its bases at Billings (BIL) in Montana and St. Louis (STL) over the next 18 months.
The Tecnam prop is Cape Air's first-ever new aircraft. The airline has commitments for 110 aircraft with plans to replace its fleet of 83 Cessna 402s in five years or less.
The Traveller seats nine passengers — though, unfortunately, not in the co-pilot seat as they can on the Cessnas — plus two pilots. Each seat is a window seat and features amenities like a cup holder and USB power outlet.
Tecnam ferried the first two aircraft to Cape Air's base on Cape Cod from Italy over three days in September. The aircraft made five stops enroute, including in Holland and Greenland.
Cape Air hopes to have 13 Travellers in its fleet by year-end.