STS Quarterly Issue 3: September 2018

Common Mistakes in Air Transfer and How to Avoid Them (Part Three)

By Dave McComb and the Eagle’s Wings Air Team

After managing over 119,000 flights, we've seen a thing or two. Eagle’s Wings Air has managed air transportation of human remains for the last 10 years, working with funeral home professionals across the country for domestic and international ship outs. Here are more of the most common, easily-avoidable mistakes firms make:

Always using the same airline

Just because a certain airline was the easiest or had the best price last time, don’t assume that will be the case the next time around. Routes can change, pricing can swing, the variables in air travel are too numerous to count.

With families more cost-conscious than ever, you’ll want to do everything you can to ensure the fairest price for them and for your firm. If you’re not talking to every airline about your shipment, you could be costing yourself and the family time and money. If calling every airline sounds time consuming…let EWA handle it!

Not understanding the impact of shipment weight

500 pounds is a very important figure for air shipment of human remains. Do you know why?

If your shipment (including the deceased and all container contents such as ice) is over 500 pounds, the airport could refuse to take possession of the shipment outright. This forces you to rebook the transport and you can be assured of delays and having to inform the family of the change in plans.

Certain airports or cargo stations may not be properly equipped in terms of staffing, equipment or aircraft to safely load, fly and offload a shipment of that weight. This can fundamentally alter the route a family’s loved one is flying, which creates additional logistical challenges. Instead of driving 20 minutes to a local airfield, you may have to transport the deceased several hours to a larger airport.

On top of all that, the price in airfare for a shipment over 500 pounds increases dramatically. Be absolutely sure of all the weights and measures of your shipment to avoid embarrassing delays that upset the family and cost overruns that hurt your bottom line.

Read Parts One and Two of the most common air transfer mistakes.

Selected has partnered with Eagle’s Wings Air to help members provide each other and their families the very best in transfer services. When a family’s loved one needs transport on a flight originating in the United States, click here to book air transport with the experts at Eagle's Wings Air.

Need a funeral home you can trust to help you with embalming, cremation or ground transport? Click here to find one of the more than 270 Selected member firms who are STS Agents.

You are receiving this message because you are a designated Selected Transfer Services agent. To locate fellow STS firms for transfer assistance and for more helpful information, visit the Selected Transfer Services page.

Have a best practice or a helpful transfer story to share for a future issue of STS Quarterly? Email Dan Beavers or call 800-323-4219.