Four Key Takeaways from NBAA 2022


I recently had the pleasure of attending the 2022 NBAA Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA) in Orlando, FL. As the world’s largest business aviation trade event, NBAA is an intense week of industry “show and tell” as well as compelling educational content. It’s also a fantastic opportunity to meet with customers, colleagues, and suppliers to discuss emerging technology and trends.

At this year’s event, I came away with four key takeaways:

Business Aviation is BACK!
Not that business aviation ever went away, but the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has certainly been felt across the industry. At NBAA, as we saw with EBACE, another business aviation event earlier this year, booth traffic was heavy, which to me is a sign of a strong recovery in the sector and an excitement to engage with others in the industry.

We were thrilled by the number of customers who came by our booth, either impromptu or as part of a scheduled meeting. And with each interaction, we could tell that attendees were happy to be back at in-person events like this, making connections and seeing products in real time. We also found that customers were eager to hear from companies like Collins about the many ways we’re innovating and bringing new, improved solutions to a reinvigorated business aviation market. 

“Nose-to-Tail” Vendors Provide Benefits
A common theme that kept coming up was customer interest in working with vendors that could provide a variety of “end-to-end” services. This was particularly important in the mid-to-heavy market segment, where customers have sophisticated, long-range aircraft that often fly more complex trips. For these operators, having a single company that can provide solutions from nose to tail is key.

In addition, we also heard that 24/7, experienced customer and technical support is critical to handling any issues that may arise during the complicated multi-leg, global trips they fly. Not having to pay multiple invoices, negotiate numerous contracts or navigate between vendors to get answers, were cited as other benefits. These operators are looking for a single vendor to help them efficiently and effectively meet the needs of their high-profile – and demanding – customers.

Questions Around Connectivity
Clearly, connectivity has moved past the “nice to have” and into the “need to have” category for operators seeking to ensure their passengers have the best experience.  But it’s clear that questions about costs, downtime, and technology transitions linger for many.

If business aviation organizations are concerned about making an investment in connectivity technologies, or don’t know which technology to invest in, focusing on their requirements should help.  What capabilities are their passengers looking for? What will these passengers want in the future? There are as many options for connectivity as there are answers to these questions.

Understanding exactly how their passengers expect to use connectivity will help give operators the clarity they need to make the right decision for near- and long-term success.

Expecting Innovation
Not surprisingly, customers are looking to leading companies like Collins Aerospace to continue providing advanced technology and innovative solutions to the industry. Customers are searching for solutions that simplify their business by providing a single, easily accessible, source for data and applications for example.

Intuitive, easy-to-use, and modern UI/UX; integrations between tools and apps to streamline operations (for example, dashboards); and automation were some of the other areas mentioned. Operators are also looking for solutions that work across multiple platforms, with mobile being highlighted as key.

So, there you have it – my quick takeaways from one of the premier events in the business aviation industry. The good news is that despite the impact of the pandemic, the economic recovery continues. It’s clear that our industry is not only resilient – it’s thriving. Companies are more focused than ever on delivering the best experience to their passengers. Looking forward, I’m excited to see where our industry will go in the next few years. And if my visit to NBAA is any indication, it’s going to be an exciting journey for all.


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