Wheels Up, Jet Linx, and XO: Comparing the private jet sharing options

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.

EXCLUSIVE: JetSmarter’s evolution is bringing branded airplanes, aircraft management, new single seat, empty leg and charter pricing, plus a new COO

Goodbye free empty legs and shared flights. JetSmarter 2.0 is a very different but potentially appealing proposition. Will there be a jet card in its future?

 

JetSmarter’s CEO and founder Sergey Petrossov might debate using the word evolution and certainly feels criticism, including from this reporter, has been unfair. Whether or not the appraisals have been correct is probably one of those YMMV type things. Either way, what’s clear to me is that JetSmarter today and even more so a year from now will be very different than when it took flight in 2013. Back then, you paid a membership fee and then indulged in free seats on shuttles that JetSmarter scheduled. There were also free empty legs where you got the entire plane for as many friends as it could fit. For aspiring private travelers, it was like being a kid in an all you can eat candy store.

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