Prepaid private jet travel has always been around. It used to be called block charter, however, the private aviation industry in the past decade has been getting its marketing pants on and the result has been a plethora of jet card programs.
The jet card concept takes its inspiration from debit cards where you pay money into an account and then draw down from it as you make purchases. Jet card and jet card like programs operate the same way.
Private Jet Card Comparisons has identified over 100 programs from over 25 providers and while there is a commonality in the concept, the particulars of the programs vary widely. One of the key differences is the companies that sell the jet cards. They vary from global entities such as Berkshire Hathaway (NetJets) and Delta Private Jets (Delta Air Lines) to major private aviation industry players (Air Partner, Clay Lacy, Jet Linx, JetSuite, Flexjet, Sentient Jet, Wheels Up, XOJET) to brokers who don’t own planes (Magellan Jets, Straightline, Airstream Jets, Private Jet Services) but go into the Part 135 charter market to source planes for your travel needs.
A survey by Business Jet Traveler found only 3% of you engage a consultant before buying a jet card. Most people take the recommendation of a friend or have their assistant do some basic online research. However, programs vary significantly in terms of peak days where you will pay a premium, reservations, and cancellations lead times, ability to change the size of your plane, extra fees, and surcharges, including taxi time as well as policies on taking pets or sending unaccompanied minors. Most of all, each provider has their own standards for sourcing the planes and pilots you will fly on.
Registered users of Private Jet Card Comparisons have access to our exclusive, independent 65-point comparison of over 100 programs. Below is a list of programs we have currently analyzed.