Like scheduled airline service, private jets also have weight limits with regard to the amount of luggage that can be stowed during a trip. Items such as skis and golf clubs are allowed as long as they conform to the dimensions and weight limits of the aircraft. These weight limits vary by aircraft type. Ask your charter sales representative if you have concerns about excess baggage or special items to be included in your luggage.
For those who don't mind mingling with strangers, companies like Tradewind offer shuttles between places like New York and Boston, Stowe, and Nantucket, as well as Caribbean Islands like St. Barth's and Anguilla. (Flights begin at $250 plus tax each way.) The bonus? On a route from from San Juan to St. Barth's, a Tradewind rep will meet you at your terminal and help shuttle you through. JetSuiteX, affiliated with JetBlue, sells seats on planes between Burbank and Las Vegas.
The long-range business jet features an enhanced variation of the 850XP’s winglets, increasing hot/high-altitude and cruise performance and range. On the runway in hot/high conditions, the 900XP requires 1,800 feet less runway for a 2,000 nautical mile trip with six passengers. It can complete coast-to-coast trips, Teterboro to Seattle for example.
Lastly, don't be afraid to ask about safety: Any reputable operator should have safety information prominently featured on their website, and won't mind answering questions about their pilots, such as how many hours they have flown. (At least 250 hours, which is what it takes to get a commercial license; NetJets mandates at least 2,500 hours; Wheels Up, mandates 7,000 hours for a captain and 4,000 for a first officer.) Gollan suggests fliers ask if the pilot has any health issues, and feel free to ask if the operator (or plane itself) have any accidents or incidents in its history.
I had the pleasure to work with Joel on a last minute trip needed to transport several professional athletes to an event. Joel was fast-acting and completely professional every step of the way. He sent constant updates to make sure our trip needs were met every step of the way. I would recommend Joel and Stratos to anybody looking to book private jets who also values professionalism and accountability.
Of course, once you find a couple good brokers who know your specific preferences for aircraft types and operators – there are over 2,000 charter operators in the U.S. they can access -- your broker can do much of the screening for you. That said, the brokerage side of the business is unregulated and there are more than 7,500 aircraft in the U.S. that are certified by the Federal Aviation Administration under Part 135 to operate revenue charter flights, with each operator having varying standards and procedures. From the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), below are questions they recommend that you ask your broker.
How soon prior to the scheduled flight will the aircraft be at the airport, ready for departure? I’ve found with jet card companies, they sometimes have agreements that the aircraft are there at least an hour before. Some jet card companies require the operators they use to position the aircraft at your airport the night before for early morning departures or if there are weather issues expected.
Most of all, the questions from NBAA will quickly reveal how knowledgeable the person on the other end of the phone is about what they are selling. ARGUS and Wyvern both certify brokerage houses, but keep in mind, within any company that may have dozens of brokers, the quality and know-how of the individual brokers varies much like massage therapists at a spa. Remember, you're spending a lot of money to charter a plane. If the broker doesn't have time now to answer questions about their experiences, how they source aircraft, and so forth, what will you get when there's a problem?
Private charter flights offer a range of advantages for busy professionals, including time-efficiency. From quicker check-ins to faster transit times, private jet hire is the perfect way to fulfil multiple meetings in different cities, carry out several site visits in one day or simply have more of an opportunity to remain productive while travelling.