The northeast is the latest region to welcome a members-only air service that allows unlimited travel for a monthly fee; meanwhile, similar companies in Texas and California are adding more route options.
The new entrant in the northeast is called Beacon (www.flybeacon.com), which this week started operations between New York’s suburban Westchester Airport and Boston Logan. Members who ante up $2,000 a month can take advantage of Beacon’s 18 daily flights in the busy market. Reservations are required, but members can change or cancel flights up to 20 minutes before departure with no fees or penalties.
Three of Beacon’s four founders were involved in launching California’s Surf Air, which pioneered the all-you-can-fly concept. “The route between Boston and New York is among the most traveled in the U.S., yet there’s no way to get between the two cities in under two hours. Today, we are proud to be changing that and serving this unmet need for business travelers on the East Coast,” the company said in a statement. According to Beacon’s website, it also plans to offer seasonal service to vacation destinations including Nantucket and New York‘s Hamptons on eastern Long Island.
Beacon recently signed a deal with Dynamic Aviation to provide 27 “mid-sized executive aircraft” over the next three years. It did not identify the specific aircraft models.
In Texas, meanwhile, an all-you-can-fly operator called Rise (www.iflyrise.com) recently added new flights between Houston Hobby and Austin, giving it regular service all across the so-called Texas Triangle. In July, it started up between Dallas Love Field-Houston and Dallas-Austin.
Rise has a three-tier fee schedule for members, starting at $1,650 a month. It claims to save members up to three hours of travel time for any of its trips. Rise uses eight-passenger King Air 350 twin-engine aircraft. The company sells memberships to individuals in Houston, Dallas, Austin and Midland, Tex.
And California’s Surf Air (www.surfair.com), which offers its members all-you-can-fly service between various airports in the northern and southern parts of the state, is adding even more routes. This week it launched service between Oakland and Burbank, and it plans to begin Oakland-Palm Springs flights on November 5. Last month, Surf Air started flying between Sacramento and Santa Barbara and from Sacramento to Hawthorne Airport, on the west side of Los Angeles just three and a half miles from LAX. Surf Air memberships start at $1,750 a month.
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