Stuart Jenner's job is high stress, high stakes, and everything he's strived for. So why, when the apex of his career is within reach, does he stumble? At his doctor's insistence, he books a privately chartered yacht to sail around the tropics for two weeks of sun, surf, and sex. When his friend-with-benefits bails on him at the last minute, Stuart decides to go alone.
When you play the empty leg market, you need to be very flexible and understand that there’s a decent chance your empty leg may not happen or might be moved. If the customer chartering the inbound flight wants to leave a few hours later, your flight will be delayed. On the flip side, your planned departure could be suddenly moved up because Mr. Big wants to leave earlier.
Delta Private Jets, a subsidiary of Delta Air Lines, earlier this year launched Sky Access. You pay $8,500 and can fly as many empty legs as you want at no additional cost. You also get 20% off select fares on Delta’s airline flights. There is a $500 fee if you cancel or no show. Over this weekend 66 empty legs were listed, although some such as Ft. Lauderdale to Miami, all of 30 miles, wouldn’t even give you time to pop open a beer. More interesting was Washington D.C. to Chicago and New York to Sarasota. There were also Nantucket to New York and Las Vegas to San Francisco, however, they were both on Friday, so the wrong direction for most people, and that’s the point, and perhaps a good segue to discussing the some of the downsides.
We were on a commercial flight from Detroit to Salt Lake City when part way into our flight we got notification from Delta app that our delay was going to cause us to miss our connection. We were on a long weekend for MLK to go skiing in Lake Tahoe. We were going to be rescheduled the following day, thus missing half of our vacation. I had email only, and emailed Garett asking if they had an operator in SLC who could get us to Tahoe that evening. Within 20 minutes he came back with two quotes. By the time we landed he had set up the flight, emailed me the number to the shuttle to get from Delta terminal to the private terminal, and did it all for a great price. To throw things off even more, we were set to fly to Tahoe, but Delta somehow got our bags on the flight to Reno that they said we couldn't make. So at the last minute we changed from Tahoe to Reno for a destination. By the time we took the shuttle to the FBO our flight plan was set and we took off within 10 minutes. It could not have been more seamless. It literally saved our vacation. Time is the most precious resource we have and time with family is even more precious. Our daughter is a senior and this is one of the last trips we'll have with her; it meant a lot, and Stratos savings our vacation, allowing us to create memories, means all that much more. Thank you!! Dave
From start to finish, our experience with Stratos was totally professional, made very simple and the ultimate in how charter travel should be booked/enjoyed! We know it takes an entire team behind the scenes but all credit to Joel for his 'personal' touch and for making our return trip to New York a very memorable one indeed!!! We have used several charter companies worldwide over the years but Joel and his team beat them all!!!
Chartering a jet may seem easy with online brokers saying it just takes a few taps on your smartphone, and in some cases that may be true. You've read the stories: "We're the Uber of private jets." But there’s more to chartering than just searching Google for a broker or browsing a list of operators, then calling and saying, “I have five people going to Phoenix and we want to leave Tuesday morning at 10 a.m. How much is a private jet? Do you have a G450?” When you charter on-demand, each trip you should spend the time to do some due diligence, and there are a wide variety of issues to cover. A few weeks ago, I was talking to one gentleman who told me a broker from a fairly well-known company was insisting a specific airplane type could fly a route nonstop. It couldn't.
There are potentially even better deals. JetSuite offers SuiteDeals for as little as $500 each way. You have to sign up on its website, but when I visited, it didn’t have any flights listed. Wheels Up has a program called 8760. You pay $6,900 annually and access empty legs for as little as $320. You also get entry to its hospitality at events at the Super Bowl, The Masters, other high profile confabs, plus an Inspirato Key Membership which normally has a $10,000 initiation fee and then $3,500 annual dues.
I personally think a really great destination is St Moritz. Or there’s Samedan airport which is ten minutes from St Moritz. It’s an amazingly beautiful approach and an absolute classic example of saving hours and hours over flying commercial. For people who fly in for a ski weekend for two or three nights, we are saving them up to ten hours of skiing time. People would often see flying into St Moritz as being all about the luxury, for the snow polo, but actually sometimes it’s about giving you an extra day of skiing. It’s one of the absolute no brainer reasons why people use private jets to just save themselves hours of time, and hours of hassle.
Once again, Stratos Jets provided perfect travel service with competitive prices! We needed to move a family member with memory loss and agitation from Boston to Houston on very short notice. Joel set everything up within 24 hours- a beautiful private jet, cars and drivers at both ends of the trip, a security detail plus catering. I am completely impressed with this company and will use them whenever I need private jet service. Thank you, Joel!
At Pentastar Aviation, we focus first and foremost on passenger safety. There are no age restrictions for passengers on private jets. Just let us know if you are traveling with a child, and we’ll be sure the aircraft selected for your trip will accommodate your family’s needs. Please note, however, neither PACI nor Pentastar Aviation will transport unaccompanied minors under the age of 18. Domestic pets are allowed on some aircraft. Make sure to let your charter sales representative know if you will be traveling with a pet so we can accommodate your request. Please note that exotic animals may not be allowed, especially on international flights.
Some other examples of prices come from Avinode, which powers a charter marketplace for brokers and operators and gathers a large amount of data on pricing. Their recent data shows the average price per hour for return trips, for various aircraft. As noted above, these rates can vary depending on when you fly, where you fly and if your flight is one way or return, plus landing fees, ramp fees and any repositioning can all add to the costs. Always ask for a fully inclusive quote from your broker or operator.
Within reason, many more things in private aviation are possible then they are in commercial airlines. A very common filter that people would want to know is the aircraft’s age. They would want know, “can I have an aircraft that’s less than five years old?” Depending on the culture of who is travelling, we will sometimes have people that only want male pilots, for example, or they want a smoking aircraft in some cases, or they want to take their pets on board, or they want a particular colour interior. Sometimes you will have requests like the aircraft has to fly at a certain altitude because a passenger has poor health, and they only want to fly at a certain altitude. You’re not going to phone up Ryanair and ask that.
There are limitations and restrictions on both the amount and size of luggage you bring as well as the types of items you may pack. The limitations of amounts and sizes of luggage are dependent upon the size of the baggage area of the aircraft you are chartering. If you plan to bring any oversized items, such as skis or snowboards, please be sure to advise your flight specialist in advance. Also, as a Part 135 operator and for your safety, we are held to the same TSA regulations for prohibited items for carry-on & checked baggage as the airlines. Please go to https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/prohibited-items to view a comprehensive list of allowed & restricted items.
Peace of mind!!! My family and I just completed our first charter on a private jet with Stratos. My wife and I have been on a few of our friend’s charters before and I fly regularly on my company's aircraft but this was the first charter of our own. Stratos and specifically Joel Thomas made my wife and I feel that we were in great hands throughout the planning, selection and ultimately flight process. Family loved it!!! Great experience.