True Costs and Considerations of Charter Jet Travel
written by: Suresh Ginige•edited by: Laurie Patsalides•updated: 10/18/2010
Whether for business or pleasure, a charter jet is the ultimate way to travel short of owning your own plane. Here is a guide to what you need to consider before chartering a jet and a breakdown of the costs involved.
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Everyone knows that a charter jet is, short of owning your own plane, the ultimate way to travel. The exclusivity and comfort will have you feeling like a hedge fund manager or an "A" list movie star and have you pondering why you ever bothered with first class. However, booking a charter jet is not as easy as it seems and expenses can pile up as there are many hidden costs involved. Here is the lowdown on the costs of charter jet travel and what you need to consider before you embark on the flight of a lifetime.
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Cost of Using a Charter Jet
Charter jets typically cost from $1,500 to $5,000 an hour. Thankfully, you only pay for the time the jet is in operation. Keep your eye, however, on additional costs which can mount up quickly. All domestic charter flights in the US attract a federal excise tax of 7.5% so make sure this is included in the quote you get from your charter flight company. Charter jets are charged a landing fee of $100 to $500 to the airports which they are flying into. You must also take into account segment costs which are set by local authorities and vary from airport to airport. If you are traveling overseas, you will pay international fees. Also, consider catering costs, which are usually not included in the quote and are usually provided by another company. So make sure these added costs are included in the quote or are accounted for in the budget.
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Features of Chartered Jets
Charter flights can be arranged with a variety of aircrafts allowing you to customize the way you fly to suit your needs or the needs of your group. You can charter either a private jet aircraft or a turboprop, depending on the budget. Jet aircrafts seat anywhere from 6 to 150 people, providing considerable flexibility when planning a trip. Depending on the model, they can also carry between 40 cu.ft to around 130 cu.ft of baggage which is ample space for storage needs. You will be able to choose from a wide variety of amenities and menus, allowing you to enjoy a custom tailored VIP experience. Private charter jets fly to over 5,000 locations in the US, unlike the 500 airports used by commercial airlines, so wherever the points of departure and arrival, you will always find an airport for chartered jets close at hand, drastically cutting down on intermediate travel.
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Unlike commercial airlines, chartered jets are at your beck and call. This means you fly when you want and fly directly to the destination of choice. Grappling with long lines at the ticket counters, checking in baggage, or experiencing extended layovers and missed flights, is avoidable when you board a private charter aircraft without any hassles. You will enjoy unparalleled comfort with extra large seats and your choice of refreshments. This exclusive setting allows you to conduct business meetings or just relax with your traveling companions. A final bonus is safety. As you are traveling only with acquaintances or friends with your luggage on board, there is added peace of mind. So, depending on the need, the benefits likely outweigh the costs of charter jet travel.