There are four key ways to fly by private jet. On-demand charter, jet card, fractional ownership and ownership. Alternatively, befriend someone who regularly flies by private jet and tag along.
On-demand charters are common among new entrants to the world of private aviation. On-demand charters are, therefore, one of the most popular ways to fly by private jet.
This is when a customer contacts a private jet charter company and asks them to arrange their mission.
This method is great for infrequent flying or missions of varying length.
For example, if one month you fly from New York to Washington, D.C., then the next month you fly from New York to London. The best aircraft to cross the Atlantic is not the best aircraft to transport two people the one hour from New York to Washington, D.C..
Companies that provide on-demand charters include Air Charter Service, Clay Lacy and PrivateFly.
This is by far the easiest and most flexible way to fly private. Go to their website and request a charter quote. A few minutes later you will be discussing your exact requirements and price for your flight. Pay the money and head to the airport.
You don’t have to worry about sourcing the aircraft, maintenance, flight plans or crew shortages. It is all handled for you.
Jet Cards / Private Jet Membership Programs
Jet cards are the next step up from on-demand charters.
This is when you block bock a number of hours at pre-agreed fixed hourly rates. These jet cards are offered by large and small fleet operators, along with a selection of charter brokers.
Jet cards are a step above on-demand chartering as you have predicting the number of hours that you will fly within a year. Additionally, there is the financial outlay and research in order to find the right card for you. There are up to 65 variables between jet card programs.
Companies that provide jet cards include Empyrean, Flexjet and Jet Linx.
Private jet fractional ownership is when you own a part of a plane, say 1/8 or 1/16. This, therefore, gives you a certain number of hours that you can fly per year.
Fractional ownership differs from a jet card due to the ownership aspect. You own a physical asset. Depending on your location this will likely come with a series of tax benefits.
Fractional ownership guarantees the share owner access to an entire fleet of aircraft for a certain number of hours per year.
You don’t need to worry about crew, storage or maintenance.
The idea was pioneered by NetJets and is still very much the market leader.
This is the most extravagant way to fly. Own your own private jet.
This is when you own 100% if the aircraft. Consequently you need to find an aircraft management company that can look after it for you.
Owning a private jet will require you to consider storage fees, source crew, insure the aircraft and more. There are many costs associated with owning a private jet.
However, owning a private jet gives you a huge amount of freedom and control.
You can choose the aircraft that you want. Fit it with options that you require. Treat it to your standards.
You don’t have to worry about exceeding your hours or someone else using it. Everything will be exactly as you left it.