Beware Of These Non-public Jet Promotions

Private jets are popular, and the broader travel industry has noticed. Luxury hotels, resorts, and even travel destinations are rushing to promote private aviation partnerships. Part of the idea, is that they offer a one-stop option. Book your luxury suite and our private aviation partner can handle these private flights.

What is being ignored is that private aviation is not all about pictures of club seats and what kind of catering you want. It’s a significant purchase, not studying the details can be costly, and the best option to you may not always be obvious.

Remember to partner with private jet companies for more hotels, resorts and destinations … [+] Details of additional fees and cancellation policies for these private flights. (Photo by Talip Demirci / Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

While these partnerships give writers an opportunity to write something and can be a good thing because they emphasize great travel opportunities, we should research what to look for before you buy.

Expensive private jet packages

It is your money. Please spend it if you want! There’s an ongoing flow of $ 100,000 and $ 500,000 worth of dream vacations, including your hotel, some extras, and private flights to and from. Some that I’ve checked scratched my head trying to find out what value I would get by booking the package.

In other words, a quick look at how much the accommodations and flights would cost if bought separately didn’t add up. I also found that some of the bundled “unique” or “curated” experiences would not be available if you just booked them separately. Worst of all, however, when you buy the package, you choose private aviation which may not suit your needs.

Preferred private jet partners

Partnering with private jet operators and charter brokers has many benefits for hotels, resorts and travel destinations. You get marketing access to customers and prospects from vendors who are high net worth consumers and can spend money on luxury travel. Promotions give their properties valuable media exposure for these wealthy consumers. That is all well and good.

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Resorts and hotels then advertise these providers to their customers and interested parties who, like many others, are dealing with private aviation for the first time. New private travel buyers assume this must be a good fit as a resort is promoting a particular private jet company. The answer is, sometimes it is, sometimes it isn’t.

As with any major purchase, reach out to some other private jet brokers or operators with your travel dates and get at least some competitive deals. One-time charter prices are based on market conditions at the time of your call. There are over 2,000 charter companies and even more brokers in the US alone. You may or may not find a better solution.

What you need to know

Most resort managers are not regular consumers or buyers of private aviation. In other words, they know as much about it as you do, maybe less. Before booking with partners, the first thing you need to consider is whether you expect more private flights in the next year.

While one-time charters often make sense, a membership or jet card may make more sense if you’re flying at least 10 hours in the next six or 12 months.

Why Jet Cards? For example, de-icing on large-cabin private jets can go as high as $ 10,000. If you charter you will be billed for an additional expense. When you sign charter contracts, you usually agree to pay all post-flight fees, including WiFi, catering, and yes, de-icing.

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I’ve spoken to people who haven’t read the fine print and were surprised or upset when they looked at their credit card statements. On the other hand, some jet cards and memberships include de-icing, WiFi, and catering in their price.

Note that there are often huge differences in cancellation policy between charter options and Jetcard programs, which is important in a COVID-19 world. When you buy a Jet Card, you know the terms and conditions of the purchase. With on-demand charter, the flight varies from flight to flight depending on the operator.

The resort may have relaxed its cancellation policy, but if those terms don’t match the private jet partner’s terms, it won’t help you much. One-time private jet charters cannot be canceled in some cases. While some jet card programs allow you to cancel or switch with as little as 10 hours notice, with most on-demand charters you would lose your money.

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What also happens if the operator cancels, especially at short notice? Maybe the pilot gets sick or there is a mechanic that morning. While most jet cards offer a restoration service where you can get a replacement aircraft at their expense, go for a re-offer with typical charters. What is a re-quote? If so, you or your carrier will try to call carriers who will try to find the replacement aircraft.

Such last minute inquiries can often double your price and if you want to leave now you will have to make an effort. If you can wait a few days, prices will likely go down again – and one would hope the partner hotel won’t charge you for the first two nights you’ve lost. When asked these questions after receiving press releases about partnerships from various resorts, I feel like these types of details are not taken into account.

Final thoughts

While these partnerships have high PR value, they combine two expensive and very different purchases. Just like a good travel agent knows which suites have an unobstructed view of the ocean and which are getting noise from the nightclub, buying your private jet flight and the vacation portion of your vacation are two different tasks, even if you do them in conjunction with one another. Make sure you research your options so you can figure out what is best for you.

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