The rise of private jets

Private aviation is now being seen as more of a necessity than a luxury due to its safety provisions and greater control over the customer environment. Here are few reasons why private jets could take off in 2021-22, with particularly strong demand from high net-worth individuals both for leisure and business.

Hazel Jain

More first-time flyers

The pandemic has reshaped perceptions towards safety when it comes to flying and travel. Private aviation is now being looked upon as a safer alternative, avoiding cramped commercial flights and avoiding queues caused by testing requirements at airport terminals.This has drawn several first-time private jet users to the market, especially clients who previously travelled in first or business class on commercial airlines.

Sanitation a priority

Along with testing and temperature checks, private jet operators prioritise cleanliness in their aircraft interiors and facilities. Intensive cleaning practices using heavy-duty sanitizers were already in full swing in 2020 and will continue into 2021. Additionally, private operators also tend to conduct more vetting of their ground transportation partners to ensure they’re following safety practices.

Multi-leg itineraries

Travellers will seek to make their trips count more – with longer and once-in-a-lifetime trips on the agenda for private jet users, including multi-leg itineraries. Lesscrowded, remote destinations will continue to prevail over crowded cities, while hygiene and health will remain top priorities, even after the risks from COVID-19 have subsided.

Carbon conscious

As we rebuild from the pandemic, private jet companies will likely put sustainability front and centre of their proposition, as customers will increasingly demand sustainable travel options. We can expect the powering towards developing electric aircraft to shift up a gear in 2021. Private aviation is well-placed to lead the rest of the aviation industry in this area and is hopeful that some of the leading concepts will take major steps forward in the coming year.

Business jet use

While travel trends might change, business travel will still be a necessity and it’s a question of when, not if it will return. We may well see that business travel changes, and a ‘new normal’ will emerge when flying is no longer limited by border closures. From the perspective of corporate jets, however, that might mean there’s more, not less demand. We might possibly see executives share corporate jets with less senior colleagues.

Fewer ‘unknowns’

The main appeal of private charter is that many of the ‘unknown’ factors are eliminated, giving customers a better sense of what to expect. There is added reassurance that exposure to the virus is minimized, especially while normal airport processes are experiencing even longer airport wait times due to the introduction of new health screenings, less frequent scheduled flights, social distancing measures, and existing security checkpoints. By being able to access a private aircraft from a private terminal, not only are points of contact with others reduced, there are valuable timesaving that customers will appreciate by avoiding the hassles of flying commercial.

For big events, celebs

Major sporting events, film productions and live shows this year will be made possible with private charters. Private travel has been popular for its obvious benefits around security, privacy and flexibility. The TV and film industry are expected to rely more on it, giving producers and performers peace of mind. Private flights have typically benefitted production schedules and travel logistics for talent, as well as transporting equipment for music and film. Upcoming music tours will likely rely on private air charter to fly artists.

 

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