When is a jet card not a jet card? When it’s a turboprop or piston aircraft – which for shorter flights might be the perfect solution
The number of jet card programs and providers has more than doubled in the past 10 years in large part because card memberships are the easy way to charter an aircraft – as close to that tap and go Uber analogy many like to use as you can get. What’s more, you can buy jet cards in chunks ranging from five hours up to 100 hours, so you don’t have the three to five-year commitment of buying a fractional aircraft share. Of course, the trick is finding the right program for your needs, and while many programs offer all sizes and shapes of jets, not all programs off turboprop or piston solutions.
Alto is the new points-based frequent flyer program targeting private jet fliers who use Victor’s on-demand brokerage. We give you our evaluation – Is it worth it?
First, among major airlines, there was American Airlines and its AAdvantage Frequent Flier program back in 1981. Its compelling proposition of free flights to Hawaii made it an instant hit. Within months came everyone else. In the world of jet cards and fractional ownership, there have long been referral programs. Refer a friend (or enemy) and earn free flight hours, which with hourly rates of up to $10,000 or more, can be well, valuable. When buying cards, you can also try to wrangle an extra hour when you are signing. For on-demand charter, it has been mainly a trip to the Grand Bazaar with each journey a new opportunity to hone your skills and ask your broker, “Are you sure you can’t do a bit better?” Yesterday, U.K.-based charter broker Victor said it had launched its own frequent flier program hoping to develop loyalty with rightfully fickle on-demand charter customers who are conditioned to shop for a deal.
Jet card membership providers Wheels Up and Sentient Jet will both be using horse racing this weekend to promote their private aviation programs
Wheels Up said today it has signed as exclusive sponsor of undefeated Thoroughbred racehorse Justify (4-to-5 odds) as he competes at the 2018 Belmont Stakes to become the second Triple Crown winner in 40 years this Saturday, June 9. As part of the sponsorship, Wheels Up will appear as the only brand logo on Justify and his jockey, Mike Smith, covering the horse’s blanket and Smith’s pant legs, turtleneck, and boots.
The entry price for jet cards and jet membership programs varies widely. Here’s a rundown of lowest jet card pricing from more than 35 companies
Price, be it hourly rates or cost to buy into a program, is often a primary focus for buyers, at least initially. However, price, in the opinion of Private Jet Card Comparisons, shouldn’t be the be all and end all. While nobody wants to overpay, unless you are talking about flying on a King Air 350i instead of a Gulfstream G650, most of you who can afford the cheapest jet card out there can also afford the most expensive.