And, after several flights, I’ve found there are some cases in which flying business class is a better use of time and money than flying private…
…but it’s fair to say flying private adds a level of convenience and flexibility that airlines simply can’t provide.
First and foremost, private jets operate under different federal regulations, many of which — like on going through security and smoking aboard a flight — are more relaxed than the ones for commercial aviation.
These are aircraft service providers for things like fuel and maintenance, and typically have a lounge area with free snacks and drinks available for travelers.
I either walked directly out to the jet from the small terminal or took a one-minute bus ride. And, I could park my car for free outside — though some people drive right up to the aircraft.
While many business-class tickets come with expedited security and passport control, the need to arrive at the airport early to check bags, traverse checkpoints, walk to the gate, and wait for boarding is still a hassle.
And, although I’m not a smoker, charter companies can allow passengers to smoke tobacco on board assuming it follows FAA regulations for things like ashtrays and signage.
Source: Stratos Jet Charters
For these reasons alone, I can see how the money — for those who have it —is easily worth the hassle-free experience — especially for celebrities who want to avoid the crowds.
For example, a Global 7500 operated by charter company VistaJet ranges from around $12,000 to $20,000 per hour. So, an eight-hour leap from New York to London could cost $96,000 to $160,000 one-way.
Source: Elite Traveler