Operations Planning


The Operations Planning Department at Abu Dhabi Inflight Catering was set up in 2009 to meet the growing demands of the unit. The team, headed by the Operations Planning Manager, was specially chosen from the various departments within the unit. This has pooled together all the specialized knowledge from each department, enabling us to produce the best results for the organization. The main responsibilities of the team include: inputting all data relating to our customers into a centralized database system, collating and distributing of the information regarding loading of various items for the flights, including; meals, equipment and stores items. Distribution of labels, flight related documentations and reports for the planning of materials and labor.


The reason for planning


Airline passengers expect impeccable service. This not only involves drinks, meals, and newspapers, but every single item that could be needed on-board - from babies' nappies to headache tablets and even the right immigration form. On a long distance flight the number of articles to be assembled can exceed 60,000.


Assembling aircraft loadings is Abu Dhabi Inflight Caterings core business and this represents a tremendous logistical challenge: the loading details change from flight to flight and everything can change right up to just before take-off.


Each individual aircraft type has its own seating configuration and galley space, each airline has its own service concept, each destination has its own requirements, and these are just some of the factors that can change loading details. Increasingly there are special cases over and above the standard load specifications and airline customers making individual requests.


Passengers can book tickets right up to the closure of the flight, flight plans can be altered due to weather conditions, or a different aircraft type may be substituted. All this can mean that the galley space originally reserved for catering equipment is no longer large enough or that the service concept has to be adjusted.


How our planning system works


The centrally stored data within our system includes information on the airlines and their concepts, aircraft types and their respective seating arrangements and galley configurations, requirements at each destination, flight plans, and much more. With just one click of the mouse, the entire loading can be displayed by sorting this centrally stored data. The result is a tailor-made load plan for any given flight. Every single article that needs to be on board is listed in a number of detailed reports. The make-up of the loading not only varies from flight to flight, but must also reflect up-to-the minute events such as special menu requests.


At the core of the loading list is the galley loading documentation. This serves initially as a checklist and loading instruction sheet and finishes up as a guide for the flight supervisor to advise or hand over to the cabin crew.



The department also organizes the printing of labels, which are extremely important in the airline catering production process, as well as various other documents containing up-to-the-minute information. Calculation and distribution of meal loading is a complicated task, which the system does automatically. This ensures that the correct number of meal choices will be available in the correct galley, matching the correct number of tray sets.



The critical factor is that there can be changes right up to just before take-off. Such ad hoc occurrences can be managed automatically by the system. For example, a plane is changed at short notice; the new aircraft type is keyed in and the system recalculates in a split second the loading and storage plan using the centrally stored data.


Our major objectives



To have integrated information across the catering unit providing a common platform & database for strategic planning and operational requirements


To ensure that Abu Dhabi Inflight Catering continues providing an impeccable level of service to its customers.


To assist Abu Dhabi Inflight Catering in remaining competitive





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