The private jet has been the ultimate symbol of success for some time, as businesses and successful individuals alike use the luxury mode of travel for seamless travel from engagement to engagement. While previously an ultra-rare vehicle for the ultra-rich, they have seen a dramatic increase in popularity in recent years – and here is how.
The History of Private Jets
Jet travel was pioneered in the 1930s, a mere two decades after the first manned flight conducted by the Wright brothers. Development occurred alongside propeller planes, which proved to be easier to produce and more popular for short distance travel.
The invention of the Learjet in the 1950s marked a shift in attitude to the rare form of travel, being a vehicle capable of significant speed over its counterparts – but it wasn’t until the invention of the Gulfstream II in 1966 that the market realized itself fully.
Covid-19, and the Rise in Private Jet Usage
The coronavirus pandemic was a globally disruptive event, and one which was keenly felt in every industry. International travel halted near-overnight, and the commercial travel industry was immediately brought to its knees as a result; national borders were being closed around the world, and lockdown measures in key areas drastically reduced the number of commercial customers.
But as commercial travel declined almost completely, private jet travel saw a marked increase in market share. Executives and business travelers were turning to private jets to make important trips to other countries, skirting the standstill of commercial flights and enabling the business to continue as normally as it could. The result was a 10% increase in domestic private air travel in August of 2021 alone.
The Costs of Flying Privately
While private jets afford a level of luxury, comfort, and convenience unmatched by other commercial flights and services, there are costs associated with getting a private jet off the ground. If you were to buy a private jet outright, the upfront cost of purchase would easily count in the millions of dollars – and that’s without accounting for the cost of hiring licensed pilots and flight staff.
You would also need to consider the cost of landing charges from airport to airport, as well as hangar and maintenance fees for periods of disuse. For the vast majority of individuals and businesses, private jet ownership is not financially feasible – giving rise to private jet rental and fractional ownership agreements, which afford all the benefits with minimal overheads.
Truly Global Travel
Of course, private jet travel comes to be worth the cost, especially if you someone for whom this kind of travel is a requirement. Private travel is peerless in its freedom and flexibility, enabling truly global travel from destination to destination. Private planes are untrammelled by the strict schedules and approved routes of commercial lines, meaning users can land practically anywhere – a crucial, and fundamental, benefit that contributes to its popularity today.