Shared private jet charters offer big savings. Are they ready to take off? An in-depth comparison of the three major shared flight providers.
Jet Linx says last year it flew 40,000 empty seats; XO says it has sold over 160,000 single seats on shared flights
Sharing half of your flights between New York and South Florida during the winter could save as much as $75,000
Restrictions in jet sharing may mean it’s not right for you
Can you fly for the same price as first-class with the airlines?
Everyone wants to fly privately, says Kenny Dichter, the CEO and co-founder of Wheels Up. And the idea is the cheaper it is to fly privately, the more people who will do it. Dichter says that was his idea using the eight-seat King Air 350i to “democratize” short flight.
In the world of chartering your entire aircraft, he cut the price for a one-hour flight for eight people to around $5,000 compared to a cost of $8,000 to $10,000 for the same trip on a jet. His argument was that there was a minimal time penalty since landings and takeoffs are not at full speed, and often as you get near to your destination airport, airplanes are slowed down to similar speeds.
The jet card provider is expanding its push on jet sharing via a partnership with WSJ+
Subscribers to the Wall Street Journal’s WSJ+ are being offered a significant flight credit with the purchase of a Wheels Up Connect Membership for $2,995. Wheels Up introduced the new entry-level price point earlier this year to increase the pool of members who want to share flights with its existing base who charter flights using fixed one-way rates and guaranteed availability.
A dozen lawsuits brought by unhappy members have recently been referred to arbitration in separate actions
Ellen Leesfield, the arbitrator overseeing the class action settlement between JetSmarter and its members, approved the agreement on July 11, 2019. The next step will take place on Aug. 22 when a judge in Miami-Dade County will need to decide whether or not to confirm the arbitrator’s decision.
In her ruling, Leesfield, a former judge, overruled several objections writing, “Plaintiffs and the class faced a multitude of serious, substantive defenses, any one of which could have precluded or drastically reduced prospects of recovery.” She also noted JetSmarter has “consistently denied liability and indicated an intention to vigorously pursue its potential defenses.”
As of June 27, settlement administrators received 1,567 claim forms and 101 requests for exclusion. Previous reports had indicated close to 12,000 current or former members of the jet sharing service could be eligible.
Cash payments are expected to range between $250 and $21,000 with nearly $3 million to be split between the class and a similar amount going to the lawyers who represented the plaintiffs.