Bulgarian start-up GullivAir (G2, Sofia) has been awarded a Foreign Air Carrier Permit and Exemption Authority for a two-year period by the US Department of Transportation, which will enable it to proceed with its plans to launch three weekly scheduled return flights between Sofia and New York JFK.

In a regulatory notice, the DOT confirmed the FACP was valid from March 2, 2021.

It covers foreign schedules and charters of persons, property, and mail from any point/s behind any European Union member state, via any point/s in any member state, and via intermediate points, to any point/s in the US and beyond. It also allows foreign schedules and charters ferrying persons, property, and mail between any point/s within the US; and within the European Common Aviation Area.

GullivAir is also allowed to operate foreign cargo schedules and charters between any point/s in the US and any other point/s; and other charters with prior approval according to CFR Part 212 of the department’s economic regulations; as well as transportation authorised by any additional route rights made available to EU carriers in the future, provided it holds a homeland license for that new service.

Privately-owned GullivAir currently dry-leases one A330-200, LZ-ONE (msn 811), from Aircastle for a combination of passenger and cargo flights. It plans to add two more leased A330s to its Air Operator's Certificate (AOC), Chief Executive Officer Georgi Kolev said in the carrier’s application to the DOT dated September 29, 2020. The company, on March 1, presented its second A330 to the public - LZ-AWY (msn 939). As previously reported, Gullivair is also planning to add three ATR72-600s and possibly an A330-300 at some stage.

According to supporting documents, GulliVair obtained a Bulgarian AOC (BG 56) on July 24, 2020. It was granted a Category A operator’s license (BG 1008-23) by the Bulgarian Civil Aviation Administration on October 12, 2016, last amended on September 25, 2020, allowing it to operate aircraft with more than 20 seats and/or carry more than 10 tonnes.

Managing Director Ianko Ivanov did not immediately respond to a request for comment from ch-aviation.