Aviation entrepreneurs in the U.S. have been trying different models like all-you-can-fly, pay-per-seat and so on to try to bring more business travelers onto smaller business jets. And now that effort is setting its sights on Europe.
California-based Surf Air is going to see how its all-you-can-fly membership club model goes over in Europe. It plans to launch operations there in October, charging a monthly fee of 2,500 pounds (about $3,238) for unlimited executive jet flying between London’s Luton Airport and European destinations like Cannes, Geneva and Zurich, with more destinations to be added next year, including Dublin, Amsterdam, Paris and Barcelona. See its new European website here.
Surf Air said its expansion to Europe “is a sign of the success Surf Air’s disruptive travel model has brought to the industry.” The company said that in the U.S., it now claims 3,000 members and it operates up to 90 daily flights to 13 destinations in or near California.
Will there be reciprocal benefits for Surf Air members in California and Europe? Here’s what a spokesperson told TravelSkills: “Founding Members will be able to use Surf Air services in the US as part of their European subscription. US Members and guests will have the ability to purchase guest passes for £750 one-way when flying Surf Air in Europe.”
For the transatlantic market, a company called Bliss Jet, based in Westchester, N.Y., recently started promoting individually-ticketed private jet flights between New York and London. The flights, due to start in September, will operate between Westchester County Airport in New York and London’s Biggin Hill Airport, located in southeast London 12 miles from the heart of town.
Flights will use 14-passenger jets operating on “business week” schedule, with Sunday night departures from Westchester and Friday afternoon returns from London. The company said that to maximize passenger comfort, it will “limit seat sales well below the maximum aircraft’s capacity.” They’ll operate as public charters flown by Jet Access Aviation. And the cost? A cool $11,995 – one-way.
Hmmm. That compares to British Airways’ daily all-business-class, 32-seat A319 nonstop between New York JFK and London City airport at about $5,000 roundtrip. Which one would you take?
Have you flown private… or at least semi-private yet? Please leave your comments below!
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