Tuxedo Air plans to offer a membership model in Texas and Oklahoma using the Piaggio P.180 Avanti with a twist – there’s a fee for each flight
While it has been a challenging run over the past six weeks for several air taxis and by-the-seat membership programs – Atlanta-based Imagine Air shuttering, Wijet putting its UK division into administration, Surf Air’s tax, and legal problems, JetSmarter rebooting its pricing approach – that hasn’t stopped others from announcing their intentions to jump into the space. ZED Aerospace said its Aura will launch a luxury by-the-seat scheduled private jet service flying nationwide by 2019, and AirChicago is pushing for a September launch of flights that would cater to Windy City travelers. Now Jeff Potter, who was CEO of Surf Air from February 2014 through June 2017, is listed as CEO of Tuxedo Air, which plans to begin flying this August.
AURA, if it takes off, will be the latest semiprivate airline, selling seats on a scheduled private jet like aircraft and avoiding commercial airport terminals at fares competitive to commercial airlines
ZED Aerospace, a start-up started in March 2016, according to the founder’s LinkedIn profile, will launch AURA, what it is calling America’s first Five Star flight experience, in 2019. The by the seat membership flights will link Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Denver with scheduled flights using Bombardier CRJ700 aircraft reconfigured for just 29 passengers. The aircraft will be operated by Presidential Aviation a leading Part 135 charter operator and management company. AURA joins a growing list of companies attempting to prove there is a market for scheduled alternatives to the commercial airlines that use smaller aircraft and avoid the congestion of large airport terminals.