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Surf Air acquires premium air travel membership service Rise

California-based airline Surf Air has acquired Rise, the premium membership air travel service that provides scheduled and on-demand flights.

The acquisition will establish Surf Air’s presence in California and Texas, bringing the total number of weekly flights to 445 across 17 destinations. As part of the agreement, the combined entities also announced plans to expand to additional markets over the next 18 months, including Las Vegas (Nevada), Bentonville (Arkansas), Midland (Texas), New Orleans (Louisiana), Scottsdale (Arizona), and Taos (New Mexico), with certain membership levels offering weekend service to Cabo San Lucas (Mexico), Aspen (Colorado), and Sun Valley (Idaho).

The monthly subscription flight sharing model bridges the gap between commercial and private flying. Through offering high frequency flyers the option to access private airplanes and terminals on scheduled daily flights, Surf Air and Rise have created a model that is more affordable for existing users of regional, commercial airlines, and offers the comfort, time savings and premium experience of flying privately.

Sudhin Shahani, chairman and CEO of Surf Air, said, “For nearly five years we have been drastically and fundamentally changing the way frequent business travelers in California fly. Before Surf Air, professionals throughout California wasted hours traveling through commercial airports, waiting in security lines, and stealing precious time from business and family.

“Today, the all-you-can-fly membership model is here to stay by taking frequent flyers off commercial airlines across major short haul business cities and onto an easier way to travel. Our current routes from the Los Angeles to San Francisco areas already corner one of the largest short-haul markets in the country, now, with our acquisition of Rise, we’re taking a significant step into expanding this footprint across the Southeastern USA through the substantial operation already established by Rise in Texas.”

As part of the agreement, the Rise brand will transition to Surf Air and a new fleet of Surf Air aircrafts will be brought to Texas to fly the scheduled Rise routes between Dallas, Austin, Houston, and San Antonio. Surf Air’s corporate and operational headquarters will remain in Santa Monica, maintaining a presence in Dallas with Rise founder and CEO, Nick Kennedy, taking the role as president of the Texas and Southeast region for Surf Air.

Prospective travelers can visit to sign-up for the new routes and be added to the waiting list. The membership airline will also start Monday through Friday service between Texas and California this year, offering customers in each market an effortless way to connect between regions.

June 12, 2017

Written by Kirstie Pickering

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