Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s holidays are fast approaching, and what it means is that for peak days fractional owners and private jet card members will be on the move. If you are thinking about chartering a private jet, a large portion of the fleet will be active, being used by program members. Jet card and charter seller Magellan Jets has published some helpful tips we are passing along.
The first question about booking during peak periods, according to Magellan Jets is, “Will you be paying too much?”
If you plan to fly between Nov.22-28, Dec16-31 or Jan. 1-2, booking now or as soon as possible will get you the best rates. The longer you wait, the less inventory will be out there. Fractional providers don’t have enough planes during peak days when most owners want to fly at the same time, so they are also in the market chartering jets for their customers.
The longer you wait means it becomes more likely you may end up paying repositioning costs to have a jet come pick you up. By waiting until the last minute, many of the available aircraft will already be at popular destinations, meaning that the aircraft will likely need to fly back empty to pick you up—and that adds cost, says Magellan.
Magellan says you should also ask your broker if the flight crew have experience at the airports you’ll be using. Some mountain and island airports have special or restricted conditions. Reputable operators require pilots to have experience flying into or out of those airports. One advantage of buying a jet card is when you buy, you can scrutinize the aircraft and pilot sourcing standards of your program knowing it applies for all trips. With on-demand charter you will have to do it with every trip. If there is a problem with your original plane or flight crew, you will also need to scrutinize the replacement.
Another point is luggage. Make sure to tell your broker if you are bringing equipment for skiing, golf, diving. Light and Mid-Size jet luggage storage can be limited. If possible, email your broker pictures of the suitcases you want to bring. The size jet you will need may not be driven just by the number of passengers. Extra or bulky luggage may require a larger jet.
The last tip from Magellan Jets is to use a broker with 24/7 service during the holidays. Magellan recently launched a new corporate travel jet card program and released a series of 4th quarter promotions for personal jet cards. The company also has a build your own jet card on its website that helps buyers identify for the services they value the most, be it catering, WiFi, etc.