Globalia Corporación Empresarial S.A. is the largest Spanish tourism group in relation to volume of sales. Its founder and chairman is Juan José Higaldo, a self-made businessman who started out in the industry at the beginning of the 1970s
These days Globalia’s activities extend across Europe, America, the Caribbean and North Africa.
The main companies that form Globalia are grouped into 6 large business areas:
Air Europa was the first private airline in Spain to operate scheduled domestic and later international flights, breaking Iberia’s monopoly in the country.
This is made up of the Halcón and Ecuador network of travel agencies. The two brands also trade via their own websites on the internet.
Travelplan has emerged as the leading tour operator in the Spanish market, both in terms of number of destinations and number of passengers. In 2009 it sold almost one and a half million package holidays. Its programme is supported by Air Europa’s network of scheduled and charter flights, but also covers all manner of products and destinations. Tours programmed on the Spanish and European rail network are managed through Iberrail, a tour operator that specialises in high speed trains. In March 2003 Travelplan took over the company Iberotours, with its commercial brand, Touring Club. In 2007 it acquired 50% of MK Tour, a North American tour operator based in Miami that specialises in packages to the Dominican Republic.
Be Live Hoteles is the group’s hotel firm. In the last four years it has experienced rapid growth and now has a total of 25 hotels in its portfolio, which it manages, rents or owns.
Ground Handling Division
Groundforce is the company responsible for servicing aircraft on the ground, loading and unloading luggage and dealing with check in. It is the second largest ground handler in Spain according to volume of operations.
Globalia Autocares is the company with the longest tradition in the group and is one of the oldest in the sector. It was created in 1970 by Juan José Hidalgo and his brother Juan Antonio. It is focused on the private bus sector and its activities cover Spain and Europe.
1986 – The company was established under the Air Europa name.
1991 – A group of investors headed by Juan José Hidalgo acquired the company.
1993 – Air Europa started operating scheduled domestic flights, breaking Iberia’s monopoly in Spain.
1994 – The Madrid-Barcelona route was established, challenging Iberia on one of its most profitable routes.
1995 – Air Europa started flights to London and New York, opening itself up to the scheduled international flight market.
1996 – Air Europa operated more than 750 scheduled flights a week and established new routes to Paris, Varadero (Cuba), Salvador da Bahia (Brazil), Asturias, Bilbao and Vigo.
E-Talonair 20 was launched.
1998 – Juan José Hidalgo grouped his companies together in the Globalia Corporación Empresarial.
1999 – Air Europa incorporated the first 6 Boeing 737 Next Generation.
2000 – Air Europa incorporated the first Boeing 767-300 for its transatlantic routes and launched its client loyalty scheme known as "Fidelitas", which came to have 130,000 members.
Air Europa began its first code-share flights with the company Alitalia, from MAD and BCN to 11 domestic destinations.
2002 - Air Europa incorporated winglet technology to its new B737-800s, making considerable fuel savings possible and reducing environmental pollution.
2003 - Air Europa consolidated its agreements and alliances with companies such as Aeropostal, Air France, Air Luxor, Alitalia, Continental Airlines, KLM, Malev, Southern Winds and Tunisair.
2004 – Along with other investors, Air Europa obtained the licence to be the second ground handling operator at 5 airports in Morocco. Air Europa started direct flights to Quito, Guayaquil, Prague and Warsaw.
2005 – Air Europa became the first Spanish airline to make direct flights to China.
In October, the ground handling division, Globalia Handling, merged its various companies into a single commercial brand, Groundforce.
2006 – By the end of the year the company had 37 aircraft, which had carried more than 9 million passengers. Operating revenues were around one billion euros.
2007 - Air Europa started two new transatlantic routes to Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro. Its fleet of 40 aircraft is among the most modern in Europe, with an average age of 3.5 years per aircraft. On 1st September the company officially joined the SkyTeam alliance, adopting the prestigious Flying Blue card as its loyalty scheme.
2008 - Air Europa announced that it had reserved 8 Boeing 787 Next Generation aircraft which will be added to its fleet from 2012. It became the first and only airline in the world to participate in the first phase of the AIRE Oceanic Program, which aims to reduce emissions on transatlantic flights.
2009 - Air Europa continued adding new routes to Lisbon, London, Venice, New York and Miami. It participated in the second phase of the AIRE Oceanic Program, which aims to reduce emissions on transatlantic flights.
2010 - Air Europa established a non-stop route between Madrid and Lima and another between Madrid and Miami, which was added to the route that had begun operating in 2009 between Tenerife and Florida. On June 1 the Asturias-Madrid route started operating with four daily flights. In July the company became a full member of SkyTeam, which it joined in 2007 as an associate member, institutionalising its participation in decision-making processes to all effects.
2011 - Air Europa adds two A330-200s to its fleet and launches the Air Europa credit card. After analyzing 130 airline companies from all over the world, the German organization Atmosfair compiles an environmental efficiency report in which it concludes that Air Europa is the most efficient medium- and long-haul operator.
2012 -Air Europa reports a record year with respect to new routes opened, not only in Europe (Brussels, Geneva), but also in Africa (Banjul, the capital of the Gambia) and the Americas (Santa Cruz de la Sierra in Bolivia). It receives two noteworthy acknowledgements regarding quality: the EMAS for environmental management and the Madrid ‘Excelente’ classification. It formalizes the acquisition of the eight Boeing 787s to be added to its fleet as of 2016.
2013 - Air Europa opens new routes to A Coruña, Montevideo and begins operation of the Madrid-Sao Paulo route. The US flight tracker “FlightStats” ranks Air Europa as the world’s sixth most punctual airline for February with an on-time arrivals index of over 97%.
2014 - Air Europa inaugurates its Madrid-Frankfurt and Madrid-Munich routes, both with two daily flights; and in May it begins its regular services between Madrid and San Juan in Puerto Rico. In June Air Europa also opens its Madrid-Miami route, with onward flights between Miami and Punta Cana, and at the end of the year it adds Porto and Ouarzazate, in southern Morocco, to its network of destinations.
2015 - Air Europa announces that it is placing a new order with Boeing for fourteen 787-9 Dreamliners in addition to the eight B787s already acquired by the company. Flights begin between Madrid and Tel Aviv and Madrid and Asunción and the company starts its daily service to Miami using a Boeing 787 rented from LOT. The airline also begins its inter-island flights.
Air Europa initiates its modernization plan and presents its new image and the new SUMA loyalty program. It also becomes the first airline to fit its entire fleet out with defibrillators.
The company reaches new codeshare agreements with Korean Air, Avianca Brazil, Seaborne and Air Serbia.
Quality, Safety and R&D&I
Quality and Environmental Policy
The Management of Air Europa, aware of its commitment to its customers, is establishing the general objective of deploying and maintaining an Integrated Management System based on sustainability, continuous improvement, customer satisfaction, information security and occupational risk prevention, with the participation of all its employees. The aim is to obtain external recognition of Air Europa as a leading airline, not only from the perspective of quality of service, but also through continuous improvement in its working methods, customer service, occupational health and safety, data confidentiality and respect for the environment.
Air Europa undertakes to:
- Use all the resources necessary to ensure that the service we provide is safe, reliable and complies strictly with all the specifications required in the field of Quality Management (1.035 OPS, EASA Part MA 712 and UNE-EN-ISO 9001: 2008), Environmental Management Systems (EMAS Regulation EC No 1221/2009, UNE-EN-ISO 14001: 2004 and applicable legal requirements), Information and Data Security (ISO 27001: 2007), Occupational Risk Prevention (OHSAS 18001: 2007) and any other industry standards which may be applicable (OPS 1, EASA, IATA, ICAO, etc.).
- Ensure that Operational Safety, Quality, Environment, Information Security, Occupational Risk Prevention and Continuous Improvement are priority elements in the business culture of the company.
- Develop programmes to improve processes, services and customer service, always working towards customer satisfaction and taking into account the quality-price ratio.
- Establish activities aimed at prevention and not just detection of problems. Assess risks and prevent any occupational risks or pollution that could be caused by our activities and processes, identifying, reviewing and controlling all aspects that could be generated in order to ensure the health and safety of people and protection of the environment.
- Ensure adequate protection, confidentiality, integrity and availability of all the documents and data required in the operations of the company, with particular emphasis on those containing personal and financial information, as well as information related to customers and processes.
- Improve our environmental performance and the effectiveness and efficiency of our processes through regular planning of our goals.
- Establish permanent training programmes that will allow us to have staff members with high levels of skills in order to perform the activities included within the Integrated Management System.
- Maintain constant contact with our customers in order to be able to collaborate together on continuous improvement of the service provided and evaluate their level of satisfaction with us.
- Continuously optimise the overall process applied by Air Europa, using a strategy aimed at achieving and maintaining industry leadership.
Management shall establish within the Quality and Environment System of Air Europa all the planning and resources needed to achieve the objectives set out by the Committee on Quality and Environment.
The Quality and Environment Manual is the document which compiles the philosophy and guidelines of the Quality and Environment System.It is the responsibility of all staff members of Air Europa to comply with the provisions of the Manual.
Llucmajor, 3rd January 2014
Signed Ms. María José Hidalgo
Quality Management System
Air Europa was certified in 2001 in accordance with ISO 9000:1994. This Certification demonstrates the suitability of the Quality System that is in place. Since then, AENOR, an internationally renowned Spanish certification company, has endorsed our quality system through yearly audits. The Standard has developed over time, with Quality Assurance giving way to a Process Management System with ISO 9001:2000. Over time, the scope of the certification has been extended to cover the entire company. In 2006 Air Europa became the only Spanish airline with its own handling and maintenance to be certified in accordance with ISO 9001:2000 in all its activities.
Operational Safety IOSA
The International Air Transport Association started the IATA Operational Safety Audit in 2001 to satisfy two specific needs of the aviation industry in the areas of efficiency of costs and safety. The air transport industry is subject to a growing proliferation of audits which often overlap in intent and content. IOSA is modifying this situation, by introducing a single standard accepted worldwide for this type of audit. The operational safety of airlines continues to be the industry’s main priority. Compliance with the regulations and practices recommended in the IOSA programme will help airlines achieve operational safety in all key areas, as well as operate more efficiently.
IOSA, as a globally accepted audit programme, can replace the majority of code share audits that are carried out at present. An airline that has been audited and is in compliance with IOSA regulations projects a positive image with regard to the integrity of its operations and its ability to manage associated risks, drastically reducing the number of operational audits to which it is subject.
The immediate result will be a reduction in costs, as fewer human resources need to be dedicated to this function. IOSA represents operational excellence and, for a registered IOSA operator, there exists greater potential for a whole range of opportunities (e.g., code sharing, wet leasing, aircraft leasing, etc.).
Research and Development Certificate
The certification system applied is the one set out in the General Regulations for R&D&I Projects by the Spanish Innovation Certification Agency (ACIE).
This certificate is based on the stipulations of the following regulations: Art. 35 of the Company Tax Law in accordance with Royal Decree 4/2002, of 5 March, as well as Act 4/2008 of 23 December, which refers to the nature of R&D&I projects, and Royal Decree 1432/2003, of 21 November, which refers to issuing the binding report by the Ministry of Industry for application in company tax deductions.
The aim of the project is to introduce and evaluate aeronautical communication, navigation and surveillance technologies before these become mandatory in Europe.
As regards communications, the question is overcoming current limitations of voice communication systems and frequency congestion by means of advanced data link technology.
- On 1st September the company officially joined the SkyTeam.
- 20 member airlines provide you comprehensive access to an extensive global network with 1,052 destinations, plus more frequencies and more connectivity than ever before.