The answer is sometimes, and yes you can save money, but you need to be flexible
By various estimates, 30% to 50% of the private jet charter fleet flies empty. Why? Unlike airlines which schedule aircraft and then sell seats knowing at all times where planes are supposed to be and how many people are booked to be flying, in private aviation, the jets are waiting to go and pick up passengers willing to pay as much as $15,000 per hour to fly in them. In terms of structure, it’s as different as chalk and cheese.
While private aviation has struggled to get back to pre-Recession levels, the number of companies selling Jet Cards has doubled
Since the Great Recession of 2008 private aviation has struggled. Flight hours dropped significantly and now just a decade later are returning to levels equal to before the financial meltdown. Orders and deliveries of new private jets still haven’t recovered, yet one area of private aviation has been growings – Jet Card Memberships.
JetSuite is extending its offer providing customers up to $18,000 in flight credits through the end of December. The offer was originally supposed to expire at the end of November. You can find details on the offer here.
The move comes as Wheels Up, VistaJet, JetSmarter, JetSuite and Victor have all announced new funding to power expansion
U.S.-based Bird Dog Jet has been acquired by U.K. PrivateFly, according to an email from the latter. “I wanted to share some exciting news with you about our continued expansion. 2017 has been a record-breaking year for us, showing another plus 50% growth rate. We’ve been busy arranging more flights, for more customers, than ever before. And I’m now delighted to be able to announce PrivateFly’s takeover of Bird Dog Jet, a US charter broker. They will join our existing US team based in Fort Lauderdale, to enable us to fly more clients within North America, the Caribbean and further afield,” wrote Adam Twidell, CEO of PrivateFly in an email to customers.
Jet Card Membership Programs provide users convenience when they fly privately, but finding the true hourly rate you will be paying often takes a bit of work
You ask your assistant to go to a few private jet card membership websites and check out the hourly rates. She follows your instructions and puts them in a comparison chart for you. That was easy! Then you join. You get your first invoice, and shock, the prices you are paying have nothing to do with the rates on the website. It reminds you of that $29 per day car rental that ended up costing you $79.
Private Jet Card Comparisons is the only independent buyer’s guide providing subscribers head-to-head comparisons of over 100 private jet card membership programs in easy-to-use spreadsheets. Compare hourly rates, pricing, fees and more than 65 variables
To find the right jet card program for your needs takes a bit of work. While many buyers rely on recommendations from their friends, your friends’ flying habits are probably different from yours. At the same time, you can have your assistant or finance department do some Google research. They will come back with a handful of randomly selected companies. They then have to spend time filling in request forms with providers and waiting for each jet card seller to send their information. After that, they need to take the collateral and put it into a form where you can start comparing programs which vary widely. What’s more, they will have to spend time going back to providers and asking them for information they didn’t provide.
SuiteKey membership starts as low as $3,250 per hour for an Embraer Phenom 100
JetSuite, which recently announced it was going to an all Embraer fleet by the end of 2018, is offering flight credits from $3,500 to $18,000 if you buy a SuiteKey Membership during November. The deal effectively reduces your hourly rate up to $185 per hour on the Phenom 100 and up to $230 per hour on the CJ3 or Phenom 300 for the duration of your contract, according to the operator.