Nostalgic thoughts of a great past, ‘the good old days’, are a part of everyday life. We also tend to have such notions for different industries, private aviation included. Felipe Reisch reflects on why our industry isn’t what it once was - and why that can be a good thing…
Examples of areas that have undergone vast changes over the years include the photography industry. Older generations miss the printing process of photography and being able to hold and feel a picture in their hands. Look at the way the children entertainment industry has evolved, too... Whatever happened to the days when kids played with wooden toys, made friends face-to-face, and creativity seemed to have no limits?
Other industries have evolved to the point where the past seems like a blur and the present is upheld as the gold standard. That's the case for private aviation, too. But why?
For starters, the level of accessibility has risen to the point where even small- to medium-sized companies are using private aircraft to drive revenue.
Both small and large corporations think of time as a commodity to deliver a product faster or to make three sales pitches in a day, thanks to the flexibility that private aviation brings.
Furthermore, the different types of aircraft in the market, which can adapt to very specific needs, have brought new users to the field.
Today, private aviation is not a synonym for large and luxurious jets as it once may have been perceived. Rather, diverse sorts of aircraft ready to service the requirements of the passenger are available.
Turboprops, for example, have played a key role in the addition of new users thanks to reduced operating costs and extreme adaptability to diverse runways.
The large aircraft pool has bolstered the market not only with more types of airplanes, but also with a wide array of prices.
Have you heard of empty leg flights? Well, this segment has come to life thanks to the extensive use of private aviation, and companies like Monarch Air Group, with flights all over the world, market those routes that become available during the repositioning of a jet, flying empty to start its next booked route or just to return to base, at a reduced price of between 50-70% less.
There are opportunities that even allow an empty leg roundtrip thanks to the large demand. This is just one example of something that wasn’t available in the initial stages of private aviation.
Technology is another variable that has propelled private aviation to new heights. Chartering a jet through a mobile app that instantly provides the best price and aircraft for a specific route that departs just hours ahead, is the start of a sound customer experience, culminated by superior in-flight service and second-to-none flexibility and comfort.
Many companies are even moving faster, providing the possibility to pay on demand flights with cryptocurrencies, fully adapting to the client’s purchasing habits.
Ultimately, things change – and sometimes for the better. The old ‘private aviation is only for the super-rich’ notion is long gone, and new generations are using this service as a need (not a luxury), with the necessity to fly, now, to a city where its next commercial connection departs in 12 hours.
Private aviation isn’t what it once was. Accessibility, technology, price and aircraft diversity have engaged to build a flexible and welcoming service, which satisfies needs instead of projecting magnificence, as may have been the case for some in the good old days...