Private Jet

With the well documented issues in commercial flying more and more people have found reasons to turn to private aircraft.

There are a variety of options to consider. The starting point is how often you want to fly privately.

If you only fly a few hours a year then on demand aircraft charter is probably the best way to go. As your number of hours of private flying increases look at charter cards and fractional cards.

Once you reach about 50 hours of flying a year then fractional aircraft ownership can start to make sense and above 300 or so hours per year whole ownership is worth looking into. Here is some core information to help you understand the options.

All of the major providers have expanded over the last few years. Many now offer a wide range of products and solutions to meet the needs of various clients. If you're looking at the different options then download our Guide to Private Aviation, which compares the products and providers. 

The latest news and research on private jets and aircraft is included below.


Sales data from the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) shows deliveries in 2016 were lower than for several years. The annual databook reported 661 new business jets sold worldwide in 2016 compared to 718 unit sales in 2015. Here are some of the highlights and the sales by manufacturer.

Jet Linx, a Nebraska-based private jet company, finished 2016 on a high note and expects to see continued growth in 2017.

Omaha businessman Denny Walker founded Jet Linx in 1999. He saw a need for a private jet company, one that could provide more localized service than the existing offerings, which tended to be based on either the East or West coast. Still headquartered in Nebraska, Jet Linx now has 13 additional locations, including Atlanta, Washington D.C. and several Texas locations. Since its founding, Jet Linx planes have flown more than 58 million miles.

On the first Saturday in May, thousands of people will flock to Louisville, Kentucky to watch “the most exciting two minutes in sports.” SherpaReport spoke to executives at three private aviation companies to find out about demand for flights to this year’s Kentucky Derby.

When a charter operator needs to reposition an aircraft for its next charter flight, that flight leg often is flown empty—without paying passengers—thus the term, empty leg (aka “deadhead”). The outbound flyer typically already paid for the repositioning leg, so any revenue generated by the empty leg is found money for the operator. Thus, operators often offer these flights to the public at somewhat reduced pricing. By some estimates, as much as 40% of all private jet flights are empty legs. Now, more than ever, third party brokers utilizing the internet have gotten into the game, aggregating empty legs from various operators and offering them for public consumption.

We’ve previously written about the main reasons for flying on private jets. These include the time saving, the privacy, the convenience and the flexibility. Recently we’ve heard of a couple more reasons to add to this list. While these additional reasons don’t make compelling cases on their own, they certainly add to the consideration set.

Fractional aviation company Flexjet recently reported strong growth and performance for 2016, something they expect to continue in the coming year. In a recent press release, the Cleveland company announced that they had seen a 20 percent growth in new business, as compared with 2015 figures. There was also a marked increase in the number of new referrals and owners who were switching their affiliations to Flexjet from other aviation competitors. In fact, half of new business came from “conquest sales” or customers who previously used another fractional provider.

It always amazes me just how many people are caught out when they make the decision to sell their aircraft, but when you look at the array of specialists offering to support the sales process, it is hardly surprising.

It’s often said that in excess of 80%, as many as 85% perhaps, of all jet sales transactions involve an appointed broker, so my primary focus here is to help guide you through this selection process.

Acquiring your own aircraft takes some thought and planning. If you know what you’re doing and have a good team to help you, the process can go fairly smoothly. But, if you haven’t bought a plane before or if you want to try and “wing it”, you can be in for some exciting surprises. Here’s a look at some of the biggest mistakes that can happen along the way.

Looking at the latest ten-year forecasts for the business jet industry, it appears as though the next decade will bring slow growth overall. Several forecasts see a peak within the next five years followed by a downturn, although this decline is softer than has been seen in the past.

Asset Insight looked at the pricing and valuation of used Embraer Phenom 300s over the last year. The results are summarized in the charts below. Overall, there were 19 retail transactions between December 2015 and November 2016.

The full charts are all presented together, to give you a snapshot of the Phenom 300. Each individual chart is then discussed in detail below.