XOJET has launched new programs with both dynamic and fixed pricing, using its own fleet and a closed fleet of third-party charter aircraft.
In the past year, XOJET has overhauled its existing programs and added new programs and benefits. The Brisbane, California based operator has also announced it has hired Perella Weinberg to explore options from attracting new investors to buying other companies and possibly a sale. With all of this going on, we figured it was timely (and necessary) to update the Jet Card Insider report in June 2017.
XOJET has been around since 2006 and is unusual compared to many Jet Card sellers in that it has a fleet of 41 Challenger 300s and Citation Xs it owns and operates, plus it has built up a significant on-demand charter brokerage, and it sells programs that draw from a closed fleet of over 1,000 jets operated by third parties. To be part of that additional inventory, operators, their aircraft and flight crews have to meet specific XOJET standards. XOJET also uses third-party rating systems and says operators have to be either Wyvern Wingman and IS-BAO Stage 3. XOJET programs offer both dynamic (market) pricing and guaranteed one-way rates.
There are three types of programs: Select Access, Preferred Access and Elite Access and all programs enable you to withdraw your funds at any time. Select Access requires a $50,000 deposit and offers dynamic pricing and provides a 2% credit but does not feature guaranteed availability or lifestyle partner benefits. There is a $250 monthly membership fee and Select Access is targeted as the entry-level program. You also get access to a personal advisor who are full-time, salaried positions with the goal being that they are looking for the solutions that best meet your needs instead of trying to maximize commissions.
Preferred Access is also dynamic pricing and provides all the benefits of Select Access and also includes a $250 per flight catering credit. Deposit is $100,000. There is a 4% flight credit and $500 per month membership fee. At this level, you get access to XOJET’s growing portfolio of lifestyle partnerships, including Hertz, Pinehurst and Canyon Ranch.
Finally, Elite Access provides a more traditional Jet Card program – a $100,000 deposit with guaranteed availability and fixed one-way pricing. The initiation fee is $3,000 and the monthly membership fee is $1,000 per month, so like with other programs that charge either monthly or annual fees (Wheels Up, Jet Linx, etc.) you will have to factor those costs in when figuring out your hourly rate. There are no flight credits, however, you get all the benefits of Preferred Access plus one additional big perk if you do winter weather flying — de-icing is included.
With Elite Access, XOJET added fixed rate Midsize and Light Jet programs to go with the Super-Mid offering. There is no Large or Heavy Jet program. Executives say they continue to look at the category, but that is his difficult to find enough large jets that meet its standards to guarantee availability. Many large jet owners use them extensively for themselves and also put lots of restrictions on those planes for charter.
The rate for the Super-Mid is $8,500 per hour, while Mid-Size is $6,750 per hour and Light Jets are $5,500 per hour. The rates include the 7.5% Federal Excise Tax (FET). The two latter programs are not national. The service area for Light Jets is east of the Mississippi and for Mid-Size jets it’s east of the Rockies. Since re-launching Elite Access, XOJET has reduced minimum deposit from $200,000 to $100,000 and added de-icing as an inclusion. De-icing can run as much as $10,000 per incidence.
In terms of the Elite Access program, there is $300 million of liability and risk insurance. There are no fuel surcharges and no CPI escalators. Taxi time is charged at 12 minutes per segment and the Light Jet minimum is 60 minutes, Mid-size is 80 minutes and Super-Mid is 90 minutes. There is a $750 per hour discount for qualifying roundtrips on non-peak days and a $2,000 per hour discount for travel over four hours, also on non-peak days. Peak Days were recently reduced from 30 to 20 and there is a $1,000 per hour peak day surcharge. Lead-time for reservations is 24 hours and 120 hours on peak days. Multiple same day aircraft are not guaranteed. XOJET also has an Enterprise program for businesses that might need multiple planes at the same time. The minimum age for unaccompanied minors is 13 and pets are welcome. In the past year, XOJET also confirmed its entire owned fleet is going through a refurbishment program.
What’s the future for XOJET? Executives declined to comment beyond its original statement. The company’s current main investors are TPG and Mubadala. Two other providers that own their fleets (as opposed to managed, fractional or charter) Wheels Up and VistaJet both successfully raised over $400 million. Brokers Star Jets and Victor both say they have raised money and are looking for takeover targets. JetSmarter already has a relationship with XOJET and the latter’s chairman Brad Stewart resigned from the former’s board. Industry executives speaking off the record pointed to a possible combination of the two. Another interesting combination might Wheels Up and XOJET. Wheels Up has built its business with the King Air 350i turboprop and Citation Excel/XLS and has started adding Citation Xs to its fleet. A combined entity would end 2018 with close to 150 aircraft and a fleet that fits most missions within North America or to the Caribbean. Wheels Up did not respond to inquiries by Private Jet Card Comparisons.
For now, there have been no changes in executive management and last year XOJET added a series of staff positions related to operations and safety oversight. You can compare XOJET programs by over 65 variables against more than 250 Jet Card programs by subscribing to Private Jet Card Comparisons here.