Equinox Charter
Equinox Charter

Meet the team: Gio Manzella

Our people bring a wealth of experience from across the industry to provide an exceptional charter and travel service.

Find out more about some of our team in this new series about the individuals that make the Equinox difference. To start, allow us to introduce Equinox Charter's Operations Manager, Gio Manzella.

Gio Manzella, tell us about your career. Where did it all start?

GM: My aviation career started with a cabin crew role with EasyJet, where I began to hone my skills in providing exceptional in-flight experiences. Then followed a move to TUI as a Resort Team Leader in Europe, Assistant Hotel Manager, and Airport Duty Manager. I oversaw hotel operations, managed flights at overseas airports, and ensured guests' well-being in-resort.

I returned to flying with Virgin and then moved into an Operations role there. This involved monitoring potential disruptions and supporting teams at the airport, in sales, and in resorts globally: managing complaints, running investigations, and leading emergency procedures if needed.

One of the highlights of that time was being awarded a trip on the inaugural Virgin flight to Seattle. It was an incredible experience, and I got to talk to Richard Branson himself. The encounter was a personal honour and a testament to the commitment I try to bring to every aspect of my work in the travel industry.

I've been fortunate to witness many changes in the industry over the years and develop my professional journey alongside those changes. At every stage of my career I've been passionate about solving problems effectively while delivering outstanding customer service. I'm very proud of that - and have even won some awards for it!

Tell us something we don't know about you.

I've always loved helping people, so working in the Emergency Services was a huge interest of mine.

As a Police Officer, I learnt many life lessons: how to stand up for people who weren't able to do it for themselves, how to overcome fear, how to find the truth, and how to bring justice when needed. I also learned no matter how much the world may feel against you, you're never alone.

Being in the police also gave me a unique opportunity to expand and extend my professional skills. The leadership, investigative and crisis resolution skills I developed during my tenure are now very beneficial when managing flight ops at Equinox Charter.

Tell us about some Equinox highlights.

One of the standout moments from the past year was the opportunity to collaborate closely on a music artist's tour. This project required meticulous coordination with the airline, and attention to every detail was paramount.

The logistics of the tour posed a unique challenge, especially when physical oversight on every flight wasn't possible. Nonetheless, navigating these intricacies and ensuring a seamless execution added an extra layer of accomplishment to the experience. 

What is your role at Equinox Charter?

As Operations Manager, my role is a dynamic blend of responsibility, creative thinking and attention to detail, focused on delivering unparalleled service and support to our clients. 

From the moment a booking is confirmed to the final touchdown, my commitment is to orchestrate a seamless and exceptional experience for our client.

Whether coordinating intricate logistics, ensuring regulatory compliance or managing unforeseen challenges, my role encompasses the entire spectrum of operations. I thrive on the diversity and challenge.

If our clients can envision it, my mission is to fulfil it.

What's the best and worst of the role?

Challenges can include weather disruptions, airport closures, and unforeseen external factors that can significantly impact our operations and customers. So in our planning, we look ahead to mitigate potential disruptions and ensure safe and timely charter services as much as possible.

The best is working in this industry - I can't ever imagine hearing an aircraft above me and not looking up what it is and where it's going - and of course, seeing our clients come back to us again and again.

Get in touch with Gio Manzella here. Meet more of the Equinox team here.