The story behind the ticket: cargo

Nothing can stop time, even if it feels like this pandemic has done it. The world keeps on moving, and airplane tails in the sky give us hope – hope that we get to work and study, get to meet our family and take care of our health. If the connection between us and the rest of the world is cut, we risk losing much more than we can gain. Our purpose is clear. airBaltic is here to provide safe flights whenever it is truly essential. Find out the story behind the ticket!

There’s more to air transport than delivering passengers safely to their destination. On nearly every airBaltic flight, the luggage compartment carries not just the passengers’ bags, but mail and cargo too. airBaltic Cargo takes good care of these shipments. When passenger flights came to a full halt or were kept to a minimum, mail, parcels, gifts, medical devices, medicine, animals and other packages continued to fly airBaltic to find their way to the recipients. This time, cargo is the main hero of our story, for which the availability of air travel is often crucial.

According to Iļja Seļiverstovs, VP Cargo at airBaltic, this year has been rather busy for airBaltic Cargo – due to lockdowns, e-commerce exploded, and there was a huge increase in the number of shipments. Shops were closed, so we had to look for things online. Just know – whenever you receive a parcel from an online store or send gifts to your loved ones abroad, there’s a great chance the package has travelled on an airBaltic flight at some point.

Still, the importance of air transport is best revealed in delivering urgent and essential freight. Time-sensitive stem cells and clinical samples are regularly brought to European laboratories on airBaltic flights. Planes can also quickly and safely transport perishable items or those which require a temperature-controlled environment. When the pandemic struck, urgent shipments of personal protective equipment were organized. Pets and exotic animals often travel on airBaltic flights – they are transported to their new families or their owners who have moved abroad. Without the speed and efficiency provided by the aviation industry, these deliveries would be much more difficult or even impossible.

airBaltic partners very much appreciate the possibility to use the airBaltic fleet for freight carriage. Iveta Frēliha, Head of the International Mail Transportation Department at “Latvijas Pasts”, points out the large number of routes from Riga as a huge advantage. That way, mail is delivered to the country of destination much quicker. The availability of direct flights is another bonus – there is no need to reload the freight in transit airports, which decreases safety risks and improves delivery times. “A safe and quick delivery of shipments is what customers expect from a mail service provider, and our cooperation with airBaltic lets us make it happen,” says Iveta.

“Greencarrier Freight Services Latvia” representative Elvijs Cerbikovs calls airBaltic a central partner of the company. Elvijs continues: “We are in medical logistics, and it’s crucial for the biological material that we transport to reach the research laboratory as quickly as possible. airBaltic lets us reach all the major labs in Europe within a few hours, thanks to the direct flights. To deliver urgent, rare or scarcely available drugs to patients in Latvia, we use direct flights from the largest cities in Europe served by airBaltic.”

“Airkargo” is a company that specializes in animal transportation in addition to regular shipments and other cargo. Not just house pets, but Riga Zoo animals, such as seals, monkeys and penguins are transported by air. When transporting animals, the wellbeing and comfort of the furry friends is imperative, which includes is the right temperature and air pressure. Cooperation among all parties of the delivery chain is extremely important, and the company notes that cooperation with airBaltic has always been outstanding.

It’s clear that air transport is not an isolated process, but a part of a large chain, so continued operations are vital for many industries – from delivering letters to loved ones abroad to critical shipments, such as urgent medicine to save lives. We are proud of our role in keeping the world moving and in delivering packages where they are most needed.

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