PRIVATE jet charters are set to take over as the preferred way to travel among the wealthy.
And with the growing number of billionaires worldwide, especially in China, which now comprises 594 tycoons, this form of luxury air travel is literally taking off in Asia – and for many good reasons. Here are a few:
Time and location are often the leading factors as to why private air travel is sought after by those who can afford it.
For example, if you are flying to attend a meeting outside the nearest metropolitan area where there isn’t an airport, you’ll need to add significant round-trip driving time to get from the nearest airport to the meeting location.
Private jets eliminate this problem as they’re able to fly into smaller airports, often getting their clients to their location faster and without the fuss of getting to the airport.
So for travelers whose “time is money”, they would certainly appreciate the added convenience and shortened duration in their journeys.
Best of all, flight schedules on private flights revolve around the passenger – timetables are based on your itinerary and you can choose when to come and go.
‘Economical’ side of luxury
Time-saving reasons aside, many will be surprised to know private air travel is actually more cost-saving compared to the total cost of flying first-class in a group.
For example, if you want to bring seven other people on your trip to Vegas, you would have to pay US$12,000 to fly first class on a commercial jet. With private jets, travelers can rent the whole plane.
If the cost for chartering that jet is US$5,000 per hour, the person will pay the same fee, regardless if he or she is travelling alone, or with eight companions.
So it’s actually more “economical” to book a private jet if you would like to travel first class with a group of your business associates, friends or family.
Sea, safari, or an exotic sanctuary – no matter where you want to go, there’s a plethora of interesting destination packages offered by private air charters.
For instance, Presidential Private Jet Vacations has teamed up with Beijing-based tour operator Imperial Tours to provide a travel package which takes travelers on a luxurious journey via private jets.
While each trip is completely customized, there are also packages with itineraries that include visits to Beijing, Shanghai, and Hong Kong, among other Chinese cities, in addition to tours of more rural and scenic areas, and to historic sites such as the Great Wall of China and the terracotta warriors of Xi’an.
Another renowned private jet travel organised by National Geographic also brings travelers to 12 Unesco world heritage sites like the Angkor Wat, Cambodia and Taj Mahal in India.
Bespoke experiences in the air
By hiring a private jet for a vacation, you are also offered world-class travel privileges that are even more lavish than those provided for first-class passengers.
Exclusive all the way, the private jet experience starts as soon as you reach the airport. Passengers are ushered to a separate VIP holding area while everything else like luggage and passports are taken care of by the ground crew.
This means you can bypass long customs and security lines and enjoy a cocktail or two at the lounge as you wait to board the plane.
On board, spacious seating is decked in handmade leather upholstery and high-tech features like adjustable lumbar and massage function. A three-course fine dining meal is also served complete with expensive tableware and champagne.
Throughout the journey, a dedicated crew is also at your beck and call. For example, on MJETS, Thailand’s leading specialist in private aviation, its impressive fleet of Gulfstream and Cessna aircraft boast bespoke cabin configurations and in-flight amenities.