Navigating Private Aviation Solutions Objectively

How Does a First-Time Purchaser Know What is a Good Value and Safe?

One of the many challenges that has evolved with the COVID-19 pandemic is figuring out how to travel safely as states, cities and other destinations begin to open up. There has been a great deal of coverage about the challenges the airline industry is facing with regard to creating an environment for travelers that instills “safety through sterility” of the environment. To do so is a tall order on a 150-passenger aircraft flown 5-10 times a day and an airline terminal that handles tens of thousands every day. All it takes is one obstinate passenger who refuses to comply with the strongly recommended (but not strictly enforced) rules of travel and the whole aircraft is potentially polluted. Private aircraft are smaller and easier to disinfect after each use and the exposure points to passengers are significantly reduced throughout the entire travel process.

Charter industry data shows many First-Class airline travelers are becoming first time private aviation travelers. Historically a vast majority of those people who can afford to fly privately have chosen the First-Class airline solution as a matter of being practical. However, in addition to the “safety through sterility” challenges described above, the airlines have significantly reduced their schedules (frequency) and the number of cities they serve (only 500 nationwide previously). Hence the travel experience that used to be a non-stop may now become multi-stop or not served at all. Private aviation may be the only way to get there in lieu of driving a significant distance keeping in mind private aviation can easily access over 5,000 airports in the United States alone.

There are many ways to gain access to private aviation, each requiring different levels of cost and commitment. For a newcomer to the private aviation travel space, it is challenging to receive guidance from anyone other than a sales-person for one of the many vast and diverse private aviation services and models thereof. Naturally their position is biased. This reality creates a purchasing environment that is a vacuum of objectivity. In other words, the buyer has to listen to the pitch from each program’s sales person, and/or study their website, cull through the marketing material and proposals to create a comparison not only based on cost by aircraft type, program access (black-out dates) and consider “buy-in” versus “pay as you go” models, to name a few features. The most important feature of the program may be the quality of the operator (safety). How can that be evaluated by a novice?

Identifying and working with an experienced private aviation consultant ensures the client is using the appropriate private travel solution for their specific travel profile based not only on their budget but on the level of reliability and safety they expect and deserve. The Blue Ridge Jet Management team applies over 100 years of combined private aviation industry experience to provide a thorough analysis of the client’s travel needs yielding an objective recommendation of the best private aviation solution.

Greg Kinsella, Vice President and Co-Founder of Blue Ridge Jet Management, personally offers over 30 years of aviation experience gleaned from working with major aircraft and engine OEMs sales organizations, aircraft finance companies in addition to running industry leading aircraft management and charter organizations. He is a prior Chairman of the Air Charter Safety Foundation and has bought and sold aircraft, charter, jet cards and hangars for clients over the span of his career. Contact: greg@blueridgejet.com or (703) 402-3893.

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