Wheels Up has acquired Mountain Aviation, the 10th largest U.S. Part 135 private jet operator, adding 59 private aircraft to its fleet
The deal makes Wheels Up the world’s largest Citation X operator and sets it up to be a major player in transcontinental private jet flights
Add Mountain Aviation to the list. After acquiring Delta Private Jets, Gama Aviation Signature, and TMC Jets over the past 19 months, Wheels Up has acquired the 10th largest private jet charter operator in the country.
Despite consolidation, the 25 largest Part 135 and 91K operators account for only 25% of the U.S. private jet market
Why you won’t find Wheels Up when you look at lists of private aviation operators
Sizing the U.S. private jet market between Part 91, Part 91K fractional and Part 135 charter operators
8 of the 10 largest companies are led by the founder or family member
Here’s a big difference between the private jet market and the airlines. Just 10 airlines account for 90% of the domestic market for scheduled passenger traffic. Four companies – Delta Airlines, American Airlines, United Airlines, and Southwest Airlines – are responsible for two-thirds of U.S. flights.
Despite consolidation, business aviation remains fragmented. An analysis by Private Jet Card Comparisons of various reports from Argus TRAQPak and other data shows the 25 largest operators of charter and fractional fleets together account for just 25% of all U.S. flying.
Argus Traqpak has published its list of the largest private jet rental operators in the U.S. based on 2019 flight activity
Part 135 flights declined 0.6% while flight hours fell by 1.4% in 2019
The report highlights the fragmented nature of private jet charter with the top 25 companies only accounting for one-third of flight hours
Gama Aviation Signature remains the dominant player in Part 135 private jet charter, according to a recap of 2019 activity by Argus Traqpak.
With 103,096 flight hours, it saw a 13% increase compared to 2018, despite an overall decline in the market for commercial private aircraft charter rentals.
Overall, Part 135 flying decreased by 0.6% in flights and 1.4% by flight hours on a year-over-year basis.