As the rising temperature and lighter evenings show, summer is tantalisingly close, meaning holidays are just around the corner. You can almost smell the salty air and sun tan lotion.…
We sat down with one of our PA Collective® partners, Chapman Freeborn, to chat about how COVID-19 has changed private air travel. Chapman Freeborn is one of the leading private jet charter firms, with incredible 24-hour global flight support and offices worldwide. Read on for an insight into the world of private jet travel during a global pandemic.
Private air travel during a pandemic Q+A
How has the experience of private air travel changed due to the pandemic?
With continually changing entry requirements for different countries — including European countries — our passengers have to be prepared for additional health and safety precautions at the airports and onboard the aircraft. Passengers may be required to wear masks and gloves at some private jet terminals. They may need to fill in additional health forms and even go through random COVID-19 tests on arrival to some countries. We are working hard to minimise the impact of this by staying in regular contact with our passengers and guiding them through the rules and procedures. However, clients remain responsible for following government regulations.
Where are the top destinations clients want to travel to right now?
At the moment, we see a lot of demand for Croatia, Montenegro, the Balearic Islands (Ibiza and Palma are the top) as well as Cote D’Azur. Greece is popular, however, due to strict rules on arrival and the late opening for UK traffic, Greece missed out as the initial wave of holidaymakers went elsewhere. We see some demand for Portugal as well, but it would have been more significant if Portugal was on the UK’s safe-countries list.
Are there any countries that are easier or more difficult to fly to right now?
Greece is currently amongst the most challenging countries in Europe as they perform random COVID-19 tests on arrival. Most other countries in Europe are much easier to get into and have more or less the same entry requirements.
What are the top reasons people are travelling now? For example, is it for business, leisure or health reasons?
Most of our passengers are currently travelling for leisure. We see growing demand from people who have never been on a private jet but are able to afford it — they want to stay away from crowded airports and travel privately for health and safety reasons.
Are there any interesting/surprising trends you’ve seen throughout the pandemic?
The most interesting trend is the growing demand from first-time flyers — people who have never considered flying private before. With new technologies in place and effective trip management systems, we can offer trips at heavily discounted rates — some of our clients have been pleasantly surprised at what they can afford. Private jets are designed to carry smaller groups of people who would be comfortable to fly close to one another.
How do you see for the future of private air travel?
We are confident that the private jet charter market will see substantial growth in the next two years. We will see more clients who will be using this service once or twice a year for their holiday travels instead of frequent, low-cost flights. We’ve seen clients who would not want to go back to scheduled flights after flying private, and we think this will become the new trend.
If you’re interested in accessing preferential rates and a personal introduction to Chapman Freeborn, apply to the PA Collective® today!