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Airport Security...On A Budget


Who ever heard of low-cost aviation security? But this is the unique domain of Planehook Aviation Services, LLC of San Antonio, Texas. Planehook’s president and founder, Dave Hook, makes use of his experience as an Air Force Special Operations “Air Commando” and former US Air Attaché in helping to secure U.S. general aviation.

“I’m a general aviation pilot myself. I want to ensure that general aviation is healthy and available to the next generation of pilots,” stated Hook. Planehook’s senior officer went on to describe a key difference between commercial service airports and general aviation airports, “Commercial service airports make their money by having airline passengers use the airport terminal and its services. General aviation airports, on the other hand, make their money by having pilots make use of services like fuel, maintenance, hangars, and cafes.” So general aviation airports are pilot-centric; airports that serve airlines are passenger-centric. Therefore, security measures that seem excessive or ineffective could push pilots away from an airport, taking their money with them.

“Our challenge is providing security solutions that fit within the airport’s budget,” explains Hook. Although billions of dollars have been spent for airport security since the tragic events of September 11, 2001, only a small trickle of funds found their way into general aviation airport coffers. Using guidance published by the Transportation Security Administration, Planehook identifies recommended security standards for these financially forgotten airports and helps management determine solutions that fit their pocketbook. “The last thing we want to do is saddle a client with an expensive or unsupportable security solution that erodes the airport’s ability to survive financially by making their pilots upset, driving them away,” confides Hook. “Finding that reasonable balance is what takes the science of security and makes it art,” he added.

Dedicated to the needs of general aviation, Planehook Aviation Services, LLC began providing its unique version of security in December 2004. The company motto, “Securing aviation one airport at a time,” underscores their approach. “There are no cut-and-paste solutions here. Every airport is unique, and so are their security needs and solutions,” explains the Planehook founder. The company website,, provides further information on their refreshingly unconventional, low-cost approach to what is normally a high-priced industry.


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