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View from the mountain top

Randall Honea, general manager at TAC Air McGee Tyson Airport, explains how a recent refurbishment has made the view inside his FBO as good as the one outside


TAC Air is a well-known FBO operator in the USA, with 14 locations across the country. Perhaps the outlet providing the best views is the one based at McGee Tyson Airport, just south of Knoxville, Tennessee, where the aircraft have the backdrop of the Great Smoky Mountains for company. The FBO was refurbished recently to ensure it remained worthy of such an amazing setting.

Randall Honea, general manager at TAC Air’s McGee Tyson branch, is happy with the work that has been carried out. “TAC Air helps travelers get from A to B with award-winning ground services, quick turns and the most competitive prices on Jet A and 100LL Phillips 66 Aviation fuel,” he says. “The thing is, with a completely remodeled facility featuring an extended café area, an additional 2,000ft² of lobby space, a larger and more comfortable pilot’s lounge, two new snooze rooms, a theater room with recliners, surround sound and a 75in TV, getting to point B might not be such a priority.”

The work involved adjusting the layout of the FBO, which has brought many benefits. “By reconfiguring our building, we’ve almost doubled the space available for our customers,” Honea continues. “We pride ourselves on knowing our customers, anticipating their needs and taking care of them with the level of service they expect.”

In addition to a completely renovated executive terminal, the 40-acre campus includes 13 community hangars with three sets of T-hangars and two sets of shade hangars. There is also aircraft maintenance and round-the-clock line service.

Touchdown in Tennessee
Travelers come through McGhee Tyson Airport for a variety of reasons, with the University of Tennessee a big local draw. During the American football season, it’s not uncommon for 100-120 aircraft to descend on TAC Air carrying visiting teams and fans. The Great Smoky Mountains also attract visitors to the area and provide a spectacular view that TAC Air’s 45 employees can appreciate on a daily basis.

Another view appreciated by Honea is of the aircraft that come through the FBO. The runway welcomes everything from single-engine light sport aircraft to small and large engine turbo-props, and business jets to C-5s, the world’s largest military aircraft.

Helping business soar
“We’ve been with Phillips 66 Aviation a long time,” Honea adds. “It offers WingPoints Rewards, which give our customers a little something extra with their fuel purchases. We also host quality-control training sessions on-site, where we invite local FBOs to attend and supplement their knowledge and expertise. Being part of the Phillips 66 brand affords us additional opportunities to take advantage of NATA Safety 1st courses, keeping us at the forefront of safety standards.”

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