Private Aviation Solutions of the 20th Century
For the past century, if you wanted to fly private; you needed one of the following:
Ownership through leasing
This one is fairly straight forward. In order to fly private in the past, it required owning your own private jet to fly on. This is the most expensive and the most tiring option, as you must maintain the aircraft on your own.
If you wanted to travel on a private jet in the 20th century, you had extremely limited options. If you weren’t wealthy enough to own an aircraft, you had limited options for private travel. One of those options was fractional ownership.
To directly quote Wikipedia:
“Fractional ownership is a method in which several unrelated parties can share in, and mitigate the risk of, ownership of a high-value tangible asset, usually a jet, yacht or piece of resort real estate.”
Fractional Ownership is often compared to time-share programs. While the two concepts are similar, they are 100% distinct. Time-share participants make a down-payment and get allotments of time. Fractional ownership participants make a down-payment and actually own part of the asset (in question).
NetJets is the oldest private aviation service provider in the US. Richard Santulli (of NetJets) was instrumental in the inception of the fractional ownership model. Santulli, a former Goldman Sachs executive, is largely responsible for the success of NetJets. Check out PJC Review’s NetJets Review for additional analysis.
An alternate option is an aircraft leasing program. Aircraft leasing differs from fractional ownership in several ways. Fractional ownership has a significantly higher down-payment than lease programs. When you’re a fractional owner, you legitimately own a portion of the aircraft. When you’re leasing, you have the right to use the aircraft (with restrictions) for a recurring cost. When the term of the lease ends; there’s no value remaining. One of the most well established services for leasing aircraft is FlexJet.
For Private Jet Card Review analysis of FlexJet: Visit our Review of FlexJet. FlexJet was founded as a division of Bombardier Aerospace in 1995. FlexJet’s current owner is a private aviation holding company called: Directional Aviation.