For the best experience while visiting an FBO, the Customer Service Representative (CSR) is your go-to resource. My name is Elaine, and before becoming ACI Jet’s Marketing Coordinator, I worked at the front desk of their FBO in San Luis Obispo. As a CSR, I saw both pilots and passengers miss out by not checking with me before making their plans. Here are some ways to make your next FBO visit exceptional:
Get Restaurant Recommendations
Locals always know the area’s best restaurants and your CSR is no exception. When traveling, it’s easy to go with the places you know, the chains you like, that restaurant you always go to. While these are safe options, you could be missing out on great food nearby. Ask the CSR where they and their friends go to eat. Chances are they know the best food in the area and at the best price.
Pilot lounges are fine for waiting an hour or two and catching up on Netflix. However, if you’re waiting for passengers all day, it’s time to do some exploring. Great places could be really close by. Tell your CSR how much time you have and what you like to do and they will have plenty of suggestions. There could be a hidden beach, an amazing hiking trail or a secret spot only locals know. Next time you visit an FBO, take the crew car and explore.
FBOs usually have relationships with hotels in the area and can get you a discounted rate. Before you book a taxi or Uber, save the fare and check to see if a shuttle is available. We have a shuttle at our FBO in Orange County to take you to your hotel. FBOs may also have gift cards or coupons to local restaurants and wineries, so check when you arrive. Our FBO in San Luis Obispo often has free vouchers for customers interested in wine tasting (unless you are the one flying).
One of the best things you can do is to call ahead. Not only can you save time once you get to the FBO, you could also get better service. At some FBOs this could mean having your rental car ready and at the door of your aircraft when you arrive. Instead of waiting until you land to book a hotel, reserve one ahead of time over the phone. This saves a lot of time and money, since prices go up and availability goes down the longer you wait.
More than anything, a good CSR wants to make your experience amazing and memorable. If you’re a regular, tell them what you like, your favorite treats, how you like your coffee. You’ll be surprised how much they remember and what they will do for their favorite customers. If you’re celebrating someone’s birthday or it’s an anniversary, let them know. They will be happy to make your day special. If you want to see this in action, visit any of ACI Jet’s FBOs and experience it yourself.