Photo Courtesy of BlackJet70 years ago air travel was a glamorous industry. Flying was a civilized experience where passengers dressed up and four course meals were served. Those days now seem to be gone while spending hours on a runway or in a cramped airport has become the norm for many. If only there was a way for passengers to enjoy high-end air accommodations without having to spend millions. Thankfully, the team behind BlackJet has introduced a service so that flyers can reserve seats on a private luxury plane for the price of commercial fare.
CEO Dean Rotchin says, “BlackJet is for the traveler with a serious need, someone who cannot afford to waste time in line, or risk their schedule to delays and cancellations which are commonplace flying the airlines.” Buying a personal plane would cost millions, so BlackJet has arranged for clients to basically rent space on-board a private jet operator for the price of a commercial ticket. Its technology lets members book guaranteed seats on an exclusive luxury jet faster than it takes to order a pepperoni pizza. In a matter of seconds, using a members-only website, or in 10 clicks with an iPhone app, you can secure a spot on a stylish 6 to 14 person plane.
Making private aviation available to the public, BlackJet’s goal is to place you on an aircraft that is modern in design and meticulous in its up-keep. The company does not own planes or employ pilots, but instead connects you with independent service operators. Luxuriously equipped with captain’s chairs, jets must meet a company standard for size and comfort, meaning smaller Lear and VLJ planes are not used. All carriers must have a Gold safety rating.
BlackJet’s executive team is comprised of aviation, transportation, and technology specialists. With years of experience, their goal is to get you to your destination safely, quickly, and in maximum comfort and style. Investors include Silicon Valley capitalists and several Hollywood celebrities (like Ashton Kutcher). One of BlackJet’s mottos is ‘first class isn’t just a cabin. It’s a lifestyle.’ Aimed at the flyer who desires the reliability and convenience of a private plane, this service will surely expand the luxury travel market. And, with a current abundance of empty seats on private planes (over 5,000 in America), it will ultimately reduce the air industry’s carbon footprint.
Days of missed connections and crowded gates are over as these flights are non-stop and use private airport facilities. An itinerary describing aircraft, operator, and departure time is available for clients to peruse before their flight. Seats are guaranteed with a two-day minimum notice and cancellations are allowed up to three days before the flight at no charge. The easy cancellations alone make this service highly desirable.
BlackJet’s concierge team will also arrange for in-flight dining, ground transportation, and other conveniences upon request. Membership is invitation only to ensure the highest level of service and requires an affordable yearly fee.
At this time, flights are offered from New York to Los Angeles or South Florida. San Francisco will be added in January with up to 15 more destinations and over 100 connections planned next year. Prices begin at $900 for shorter trips to $3,500 for coast-to-coast travel. Flights begin November 15, 2012 so all that’s left is to get invited.