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Private jet flights for leisure travellers – how rich do you need to be?
How rich do you need to be to fly on a private jet in preference to a commercial flight?
Firstly, the most important factor in answering that question is the following: you don’t have to own a private jet to fly in one. Owning a private jet and flying on one are two completely different spheres of wealth that should never be confused.
While flying on private jets can still set you back several thousand, or even several hundred thousand pounds or euros depending on the type of jet and the distance you want to travel, owning a private jet immediately changes those thousands to millions.
While owning a private jet may be limited to the super-wealthy classes, flying on one has become a little more affordable – when taking other factors into consideration of course.
For those who can afford it, private jet advantages can’t always be measured in strictly monetary terms, there are other factors to be taken into consideration.
Setting your own flight schedule
Scheduled airlines work to… well, schedules. However, those schedules don’t always suit everyone. Every airline passenger has their own reasons for flying, their own timeframe in which to travel, and their own budget to match their unique travel needs.
For some scheduled airline travellers, catching an overnight flight may be the cheapest way to travel – providing you can sleep onboard – saving on an overnight hotel stay. For others, time might be of the essence, and arriving quickly and at a convenient hour may be the deciding factor in the schedule that they ultimately choose. For others, having the option to upgrade from economy to premium class on a scheduled airline may be the ‘wow factor’ they’ve longed to experience.
But for many others, most especially high net worth individuals, time really is money, plus, during a time of global pandemic safety is also a major concern.
Unlike a leisure traveller, if a business person needs to reach a certain destination to close a deal, conduct negotiations, or any of a host of other reasons, the less time they have to spend during airport check-in or on-route layover time for a connecting flight may be the deciding factors behind the decision to charter a private jet. Additionally, a private charter flight may help them to avoid quarantines and long layovers when could prove doubly costly in the long run. This is also true for leisure travellers.
Does that mean that private jets are faster than commercial airlines?
The answer to that is usually, no. Really? So, how fast do private jets fly?
Some private jets may be able to shave as much as 40 minutes off a journey compared to a commercial flight, but that’s over a distance of 5,000 miles. The real speed for private jet users is in being able to avoid long queues and waits at airports, and instead replace them with setting your own schedules so that you can arrive at your destination, on-time, refreshed, and ready to do whatever it is you want to do.
Flying to and from smaller airports
Commercial airlines are severely limited in the number of destinations to which they can fly. Location, popularity, economic viability, length of the runway, along with related infrastructure and multiple other factors are all concerns which commercial airlines must consider when it comes to choosing their destinations.
This is not the case for private jet charters, especially for smaller aircraft that require shorter runways and less infrastructure. These private jet privileges open up far more locations to those willing to charter their own aircraft and further enhance the possibilities for time-saving.
For leisure travellers, this means that vacations and mini-breaks can be arranged away from major cities and transit hubs and closer to resorts and private airstrips. Additionally, the safety factor is enhanced even further by allowing leisure travellers to choose more remote destinations, that are less crowded, and therefore safer from the ravages of a global pandemic.
Safety – limiting personal interactions
One of the great advantages of private air travel, especially for anyone concerned about limiting personal interactions during a global pandemic, is having your private charter operator manage all aspects of health and safety.
Avoiding major airports, and the crowds that go with them is a major advantage of private leisure travel over commercial air travel. By using a recognised private jet charter company, you can be assured that all aspects of safety and hygiene are never left to chance. Organising the correct documentation, sanitisation of the aircraft, providing safely packaged food and drinks, and ensuring that strict regulations are adhered to at all times can give peace of mind to even the most safety-conscious travellers.
Additionally, by chartering a private jet you will know that the cabin has been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected before and after every flight, sanitiser for passengers and crew will be freely available on board, and the crew will wear face masks and gloves during all personal interactions. Plus, modern private aircraft are equipped with air filtration systems that supply cleaned air directly to the cabin and is recycled with fresh air from outside.
And finally, as an additional boost to health and hygiene, using smaller airport terminals means that there are fewer physical touchpoints – with fewer surfaces to clean – which can hugely decrease the risk of infection. Plus, travelling to your destination by private jet means your private vehicle can be waiting for you on the ground once you leave the aircraft, eliminating the need for any form of public transport.
The cheapest way to fly private
Besides having an uber-rich friend who invites you onboard his private jet for a long weekend in the Canary Islands, there are still some affordable ways to enjoy private jet travel.
A reputable jet charter company can help you find the best and cheapest solution to flying privately. By sharing a private jet with other travellers – for example, another family group, or extended business connections – can significantly reduce the costs involved in private leisure travel for all.
Alternatively, there is the empty leg option. An empty leg is when a private aircraft has to reposition, either after a single sector journey, or, on the way to pick up the next charter passengers from another airport. While these flights don’t come at giveaway prices the costs can be significantly cheaper than a regular private.
Of course, only a private charter company will be able to notify you of these empty legs, but building a good relationship with the charter company will help you ensure that you can take full advantage of which aircraft and which destinations are available for you and your colleagues, family, or friends. Your destinations may be limited, and even present themselves are very short notice, but the savings may be worth considering.
An empty leg charter may mean you have to find an alternative return journey home, but for the feeling of stepping onboard a private jet for a quick holiday or getaway there are some sacrifices worth making, at least once in your life.