JET CARD INSIDER: Private Jet Services Has Created A Pretty Darn Good Jet Card Offering

Private Jet Services (PJS) Group cut its teeth with corporate shuttles, touring rock stars, high octane IPO road shows and politicians whose plans change on a dime. Its relatively new Jet Card offerings are also impressive.

By Doug Gollan, February 24, 2018

Private Jet Services (PJS) Group cut its teeth with corporate shuttles, touring rock stars, high octane IPO road shows and politicians whose plans change on a dime. Its relatively new Jet Card offerings are also impressive


New Hampshire-based Private Jet Services (PJS) Group has been around since 2003, but is relatively new to the Jet Card market, launching its program in 2014. Founded by its current CEO Greg Raiff, the company had long focused on live entertainment tours, political campaigns, corporate shuttles and roadshows as well as on-demand charter. Among its customers have been Fleetwood Mac, The Rolling Stones, Beyonce, Maroon 5, Guns N’ Roses and The Rolling Stones. Its sports clients have won 13 Stanley Cups, 10 World Series and eight NCAA Football Championships. 


“For every customer we had who appreciated the tail number specific precision of one-off charters, there were five more customers that wanted a friction-free solution with fixed pricing and guaranteed availability. They wanted to be able to tell their assistant, everything is set, just book the flight for me. No hassles,” Raiff tells Private Jet Card Comparisons.


Last year the company flew 4,713 segments carrying over 90,000 passengers and had a 91% customer retention rate. On the Jet Card side, PJS has built up one of the more attractive and straightforward offerings in the market ticking off key boxes such as guaranteed availability and fixed one-way pricing.


We also like that the 7.5% Federal Excise Tax (FET) is included in quoted hourly rates, funds in your account never expire, you can refill your account at anytime, there are no initiation fees, annual or monthly dues, there is no CPI escalator (rates are locked for 12 monhts), no fuel charges, you have the ability to upgrade or downgrade without extra fees, and the ability to access multiple aircraft at one time from the same account, the latter making the programs attractive for families and businesses. Catering is included as well and there are no extra charges for specifying a specific FBO, something that is handy if you are meeting other folks flying in from another place. FBOs at the same airport can be located miles apart. We also really like that PJS offers an escrow account program. Client’s funds remain in the client’s name at a DOT approved Level One Bank (Shelby Financial). Client’s funds are never co-mingled with the PJS operating account, the company says.


There are only 20 peak days, which isn’t the lowest but compares favorably to many programs and the peak day surcharge is a reasonable 5%. Lead-time for reservations is among the best at just 10 hours although it goes to seven days for peak periods. Normal cancellation window is 24 hours stretching to seven days for peak days or if you are going outside the service area, which includes the 48 continental states, Bermuda and specific Caribbean and Mexican airports.


In January PJS introduced $500 million of additional third-party liability insurance on top of the $100 million minimum liability and risk coverage it requires from the operators it uses. PJS is a broker program meaning it doesn’t own, manage or operate the aircraft you fly on, but sources them from the Part 135 fleet.


“I believe we have the strongest safety program in the marketplace,” Raiff says. And while it uses ARGUS Platinum, IS-BAO Stage 1 and Wyvern Wingman ratings as minimums, Raiff says it goes much further beyond that with proprietary standards that he says were critical in getting the $500 million insurance policy. “The underwriting process for the $500 million policy speaks to the propriety steps we take with each vendor, each aircraft and each flight,” Raiff says.


Jet Cards are sold in 25, 50 and 100-hour denominations although it offers 15 and 20-hour limited edition cards at specific promotional periods throughout the year. Deposits are nonrefundable. “We want serious buyers (although) obviously we would make an exception if somebody was unhappy with us,” Raiff says. It hasn’t happened yet.


Is De-Icing Included?


You will pay extra for de-icing. “We think it’s crazy for our clients to pay for de-icing for clients who go to ski country,” Raiff tells Private Jet Card Comparisons. Both the Light Jet and Midsize Jet Cards carry a 90-minute daily minimum while Super Mid and Heavy Jet Cards are pegged at two hours minimum billing per day. Many private aviation users find there is not a single program where one size fits all, so they have multiple solutions, and that is probably the case in terms of single day short flights when it comes to PJS. In terms of roundtrip discounts, there is a token 5% reduction for qualifying flights.


What’s PJS’s Hourly Rate For Jet Cards?


At each hourly increment (25, 50 and 100) and for each aircraft size, PJS gives two offers, a Priority Jet Card (aircraft pre-2000) and Elite Jet Card (planes year 2000 or newer). Raif says folks who take the Priority program aren’t sacrificing safety, just saving money. The hourly rate for the PJS Light Jet Cards at 25 hours is $4,793 and $5,380. For a Midsize Jet Card, the differences are $6,650 per hour versus $7,211, while for Super Mid it’s $8,995 compared to $9,700 per hour. The price gap is largest for Heavy Jets where older aircraft are billed at $11,050 per hour versus $12,750 for newer planes.


PJS has also been expanding its lifestyle offerings via partnerships with ski resorts, something it plans to do more of for the next winter, including Europe and the Northeast U.S. It also has partnerships with several wineries and award-winning jewelry designer Todd Reed who offers discounts for PJS members and has even created a special collection for them. Look for PJS to introduce a guaranteed WiFi card in the first half of this year, Raiff says.


While PJS is a relatively new player to the Jet Card segment, its history and the card offerings will put it in the consideration set for most buyers, particularly if you are doing at least 90-120 minutes of flight time per day. Subscribers of Private Jet Card Comparisons can compare PJS to over 250 Jet Card products in one place via our easy-to-use spreadsheets.

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