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New charter airline GlobalX to start flying college football teams out of ACY
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New charter airline GlobalX to start flying college football teams out of ACY


EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP — A new charter airline based at Atlantic City International Airport — whose first customers are college football teams — started training 15 local residents as flight attendants Monday, a day before it expects to get the federal approval to fly.

“Tomorrow we get our aircraft operating certificate,” Global Crossings Airlines (GlobalX) Chairman and CEO Edward J. Wegel said to the trainees in the Thunder Room at the National Aviation Research and Technology Park. The training course lasts three weeks.

Flights should start in October, and Wegel said GlobalX has contracts to fly the football teams of both Temple University and Monmouth University out of ACY. The company has two Airbus 320 planes, which seat 180, will get two more in October and another two in December or January.

The company also intends to operate charters to and from Toronto, Montreal, the Bahamas, and other cities in the United States, Wegel said, and to eventually get into flying scheduled routes.

With two planes stationed here, the company will need as many as 30 flight attendants and 10-12 pilots, Wegel said. Pilots have been recruited and hired in Miami and some will move here or commute, he said.

About half of the flight attendant trainees — 13 women and two men — raised their hands when asked who had previously worked in the casino industry, though the trainees were not made available to talk to the media.

“You are here the day before we officially become an airline,” Wegel said.

Seventeen candidates were chosen out of a pool of about 100 who applied, but two were not there this morning, officials said.

Lauren Moore, executive director of the Atlantic County Economic Alliance, said the organization worked with the county to make it possible for GlobalX — a new airline based in Miami — to open its first satellite location here close to big northeastern population centers.

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“We got a $102,000 federal grant to offset the cost of training,” Moore said.

Fran Kuhn from the county’s Workforce Development Board, said about two-thirds of those hired were considered dislocated workers or under-employed.

Most trainees are from Atlantic County, but two are from Cape May County, and one each is from Cumberland and Ocean counties, according to the company.

The new hires will start out making $25,000 a year for a full-time job, flying 70 hours a month, he said. There is also time on the job before and after flights, he said, with step increases in salary and opportunity for advancement.

The class here is the fifth class of flight attendants the company has trained, Wegel said. The other four classes, the fourth of which ends training Tuesday, are based in Miami.

He said ACY is the perfect location for the airline to have a northeastern presence, as it is accessible to about 30 million people between Philadelphia and New York City. The location is so far east it often escapes the worst of winter storms and nor’easters that affect inland airports more, he said.

Costs are about 25% of what they would be at other nearby major airports, such as Newark Liberty International Airport, Wegel said.

But the labor pool was key.

“There is a large pool of talent focused on hospitality here,” Wegel said. “Safety is No. 1, but hospitality is equally as important.”

GlobalX signed a deal in July 2020 to operate out of the airport.

Spirit Airlines will provide maintenance for the GlobalX airplanes, Wegel said.

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Staff Writer

In my first job after college got paid to read the New York Times and summarize articles for an early online data base. First reporting job was with The Daily Record in Parsippany. I have also worked in nonprofits, and have been with The Press since 1990.

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