Jet cards are the easy way to charter private aircraft. With programs starting at five hours and ranging to over 100 hours, a jet card is as close as you can get to Uber for private jets
After the Great Recession, individuals and companies were less interested in committing to either buy new planes or the three to five years fractional ownership entails. Some companies wanted to keep their private travel habits off their financial statements while in other cases as business picked up they needed some additional lift but didn’t want to add another aircraft to their fleet. Like cars in a driveway, for families, one isn’t enough, and many jet card program allow multiple same time usage. Problem solved!
Who sells jet cards? Here’s our quick overview:
Programs start at just 10 hours and it offers service areas in North America, Europe and the Middle East. A rare bird, Air Partner is also publicly traded.
Launched by the son of a corporate pilot and charter operator, Airstream Jets uses mileage instead of hours to calculate the trip cost. It makes sense.
Founded by a former United Airlines and stunt pilot, Clay Lacy’s jet card program is based on aircraft it manages for owners.
It’s a family affair at Concord Private Jet with father, mother and son. The founder’s experience from watching his dad’s retail business when he was growing up drives its high touch, personalized approach.
A subsidiary of Delta Air Lines, you can get coveted Diamond Status for when you fly commercially. Its fleet is aircraft it manages for individuals and companies, and it offers WiFi on all its aircraft.
Launched in 2017, ECOJETS offers cash back onto a debit card for roundtrips, reserving in advance and accepting older aircraft.
With regional coverage in the Midwest, Southwest and Great Lakes, its ambassador is golfing legend Tom Watson. You buy days instead of hours, starting at 10 flight days per year.
One of the post-Recession upstarts, its pilot founder mixes programs that offer both fixed one-way and dynamic pricing.
Number two in fractional ownership and chasing down NetJets with a focus on larger and longer range jets, Flexjet offers two jet card products. Its part of Kenn Ricci’s Directional Aviation group that includes Sentient Jet, Skyjet and Nextant Aviation.
Single engine piston aircraft take you efficiently between small airports in Europe for as little as $720 per hour.
Its all Citation Mustang fleet provides a jet program to short hop across Europe with three different jet card options.
Part of General Dynamics and sister to OEM Gulfstream, Jet Aviation offers everything from aircraft interiors, repairs, repainting, FBOs, on-demand charter, and yes jet cards. If you can qualify, its roundtrip discount is 40%!
Omaha-based it uses inventory on its over 100 managed aircraft to sell pay as you go jet cards starting at just $12,500 for membership. In the 14 markets it operates, customers will find a private lounge instead of an FBO.
Another post-financial crisis start-up, the New Jersey-based broker program will refund up to 80% of your deposit if you aren’t happy.
Founded by a former Blue Star Jets broker, JetSet group is a full-service broker program.
Commercial aviation veteran Alex Wilcox who held leadership positions with Richard Branson’s Virgin Atlantic Airways and helped David Neelman launch JetBlue is building the now Dallas-based company into a serious jet card competitor with its SuiteKey program.
The New York-based brokerage is taking advantage of low prices for used aircraft and just acquired its first private jet.
The brokerage jet card program is helping drive changes in on-demand charter by unveiling a no mark-up charter division earlier this year.
Boston-based Magellan Jets offers options for both cabin size jet cards and also specific aircraft. Its website enables you to build your own jet card and in 2017 it launched a new corporate travel jet card program.
The biggest operator of private jets in the world, owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, it didn’t sell jet cards until it acquired Marquis Jet Partners in 2010. Now it is one of the biggest players both in the U.S. and Europe.
If you think Mississippi-based Nicholas Air is just a regional player, you’re wrong. Its national program ranges from the Pilatus PC-12 to the Cessna Citation Latitude. Its owned and fractional fleet is under five years old.
The Denver-based broker program offers fixed one-way hourly rates on over 50 aircraft types and its 5-hour, $15,000 Light Jet Card is its way of saying, “Give us a try.”
A leading broker, Paramount offers dynamic pricing covering everything from turboprops to airliners.
After more than a decade building its chops transporting sports teams, live entertainment tours, political campaigns and Wall Street road shows, the New England based jet card seller normally starts at 25 hours but from time to time has 15-hour introductory cards.
The U.K.-based broker acquired a U.S. brokerage Bird Dog Jet last year to expands its business on this side of the pond. Let by a husband and wife team, it combines app booking requests with personalized service. Its jet card is a dynamic-pricing based deposit program.
The broker-based jet card program from time to time offers a 10-hour program for those of you looking to get your feet wet.
Part of the fast-growing Dumont Group which has been buying up Gulfstream GIVs and Dassault Falcon 2000s from NetJets, it uses its floating fleet to offer an attractive jet card programs that include Hawaii and offers the most generous roundtrip discount policy we’ve seen.
The founding father of jet cards, Sentient Jet last year became the first broker program to offer a guaranteed WiFi program as a standard – and best of all, there is no premium. The company is known for its focus on safety in sourcing aircraft with a deep internal program.
The regional program based in Lincoln, Nebraska gives you the option to choose specific aircraft.
One of the largest management companies, it’s jet cards use both its fleet as well as additional jets sourced from other charter operators.
Blue Star Jets founder Ricky Sitomer is back and looking to build Star Jets via acquisitions of other charter brokers.
Exclusive Resorts co-founder is bringing his service background to private aviation with its 2017 launch and he is focused on piston, turborprops and Light Jets for his dynamic pricing based programs starting at $50,000.
Using the Beechcraft Beechjet 400A Tee Bee was founded and 2016 and offers a jet card program starting under $100,000 on its owned fleet.
The product of former NetJets’s sales executives Unity Jets rolled out its first jet card product in 2018, a simple deposit based, dynamic pricing program.
The boutique broker program has just four employees and last year celebrated its 10 year anniversary.
Founded with the vision of providing UHNWs and corporations a jet card alternative to full and fractional ownership, its fleet of Bombardier Challengers and Global Express long-range jets set the Tiffany standard for service and design.
After selling Marquis Jet Partners to NetJets, Kenny Dichter returned on the back of the King Air 350i to launch pay as you go Wheels Up. With the addition of its first three Citation Xs he now has a jet with coast-to-coast range.
Sister to JetSet Group, Wholesale Jet Club features no-markup broker pricing.
With a core of 41 owned Citation Xs and Challenger 300s XOJET has been expanding its brokerage side with new jet card products that used a closed fleet of preselected charter operators.
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