Director of Premium Services at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, Ms. Cheryl Pe-Vidal has spearheaded a $17 Million 8000 sq ft. Private Terminal for VVIP passengers at the world’s busiest airport. As the world’s busiest and most efficient airport in the world for 23 years in a row, this terminal is the first private terminal.
Her Role And Vision
She said, “I am the Director of Premium Services at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. My role is to ensure that our VVIP passengers receive the best possible service while traveling through our airport. This includes everything from expedited security screening to personalized assistance with their luggage.”
Ms. Cheryl Pe-Vidal’s upcoming project involves establishing a private airport. Her inspiration behind this endeavor and how it aligns with her company’s vision and vision for herself, she said, “Because Hartsfield Jackson is a hub for 275,000 passengers daily the project was created for passengers who would like to pay a premium for expedited service. Having a luxury hospitality background, I know the demands of high-net-worth guests or passengers. Time is very valuable to them, and having a private terminal that specifically focuses on each passenger from arrival to departure white glove service is vital.”
Her Challenges and Achievements
Developing a private airport is a complex undertaking. Ms. Cheryl Pe-Vidal’s biggest challenge is being a lead for this project as the first asian female director. The airport is a male dominated industry, so she had to prove to Asian women overseas that a woman immigrant can lead a million dollar project at the world’s busiest airport.
Private airports often require collaboration with various stakeholders, including local authorities and aviation organizations. She managed to build these partnerships and ensure a smooth regulatory process, she said, “Yes, I worked closely with Custom and Borders Protection and TSA. Because the private terminal is an ‘airport within an airport’, the terminal has its own customs and border protection office and staff during operations. Because this project dealt with a number of federal aviation regulations, being compliant to federal rules on a daily basis during the build out and daily operations is important.”
Ms. Cheryl said “Both having the hospitality and revenue background was a huge benefit to this project. I build the structure of the private terminal similar to a hotel structure – by reservations only. This will keep the exclusivity of the terminal for passengers who are looking for that opulence in travel at the same time optimizing revenue margins.”
Her Services and Standards
Private airports offer personalized travel experiences. Ms. Cheryl Pe-Vidal also said, “Opulence and luxury were the main focus in building this lounge. We want the passengers to feel like they are in a five star hotel ambiance. Hiring of staff is vital to the operations. Because you can have the most luxurious lounge but if your staff don’t have the proper training to provide white glove service then luxury is non-existent.”
Her Advice and Outlook
As a trailblazer in the aviation industry, the advice she would offer to aspiring entrepreneurs looking to venture into the field of private aviation or aviation infrastructure development ,is, “Aviation is a large industry to be a part of, you really need to love what you do to be in this field because the first priority is passengers. Passengers that travel miles to see their families, travel to make a living, travel for medical care, travel to make memories with their friends and family. Whether which project or department the venture will be, it is always the passengers’ need and comfort that is important.”
She sees the future of private aviation and the role that private airports will play in shaping the travel landscape and said, “Europe has a large market of private terminals. From experience, Amstredam, Frankfurt and Heathrow are my top 3 private terminals internationally. There is a large market of passengers that loves the ease of travel, not falling in line, baggage assistance, having the car ready by the aircraft waiting for you. We live in a world where passengers would not mind paying the extra service for ease of travel.”
The mark she wants to leave in the industry is that an immigrant from the Philippines can build a 17 Million dollar project at the world busiest airport and that opulence can be achieved in an airport setting and the airport can be a relaxing stop for travel if you plan it correctly.