Delivering a cost-effective charter to ensure the wellbeing of crew during the pandemic


Bourbon Offshore


Oil and Gas

Zara Higgins

General Manager, Scotland


With employee wellbeing, safety and security a number one priority for our client, it was paramount for them be able to rotate their crew despite the travel restrictions worldwide. Learn how ATPI Energy Travel delivered a Cost-Effective Charter to Ensure the Wellbeing of Crew.

The Client

Our client is a world leader in marine services for the offshore oil and gas industry. They employ over 8000 staff, operate in 44 countries and have a modern and standardised fleet of more than 400 vessels.

The Challenge

Due to lockdown and travel restrictions worldwide because of the coronavirus pandemic, our client was facing the reality of their crew being stuck offshore for a long period of time. Keeping their crew onboard for too long is a risk. Prolonged overtime leads to a higher likelihood of human error, which may result, at its best, in material damage, but can also lead to people getting injured. With the mental and physical wellbeing, safety and security of crew a number one priority, it was paramount to be able to rotate their crew.

With a large presence in West Africa and an official lockdown in Angola which prevented any travel into the country, the client’s crew faced being stuck in Luanda, Angola. For the health and wellbeing of their crew they needed to act. They believed a charter flight would be the best approach to meet their high welfare and security standards, however this was not an area of specialism for the client and they were concerned regarding the cost implications.

The solution

The marine services organisation initiated a charter request with the support and guidance of ATPI Marine & Energy. Whilst they knew how to arrange for their crew to arrive and leave Angola, as they had local relationships, they had no experience of how to get a charter flight to Angola. In addition, they wanted to resell seats on the charter to interested third parties, an area they had no experience of.

ATPI’s group ticketing desk assisted the client from start to finish with the organisation of the charter. Initially with a competitive flight offer, and then with managing the process to get all overfly and landing permits arranged. This provided a bigger challenge than during ‘normal’ times as Angola was in lockdown.

The Angolan authorities required our client to create a ‘charter flight COVID-19 protocol’ to enable them to grant the necessary permits and inform all third-party travellers of the rules prior to and during the flight. ATPI assisted with creating the protocol, which included medical and temperature checks before boarding, social distancing on the aircraft and the need for quarantine facilities upon arrival. ATPI’s group ticketing desk worked tirelessly to ensure all permits were granted, with the last permit only being approved on the departure date of the outbound flight.

Alongside securing the charter and permits, ATPI managed relationships with 12 interested third parties to reduce the cost to the client. For five days ATPI remained in close contact with the third parties and liaised regarding seat confirmation, the flight’s status and arranging bookings.

The Result

ATPI organised the cost-effective charter for Bourbon’s crew despite the difficulties presented by the official lockdown in Angola. This ensured their crew were safely and efficiently rotated and meant crew could return home and be reunited with their families.

ATPI were also able to support Bourbon in assisting smaller businesses in the industry with their crew rotations. By effectively managing third party bookings and reselling a total of 30 seats ATPI delivered a 25% cost reduction on the total cost of the charter to Bourbon.

We had little experience of using charter flights prior to the pandemic and so ATPI’s support and expertise was essential in being able to transport our crew safely and efficiently throughout challenging times

Learn more about ATPI’s sector-specific offering for the energy industry