Private skies

Private jet hire allows travellers to not only personalise the way in which they fly, but also to travel at times that most suit them and to reach locations in one flight that might require several transfers on commercial airlines. And, according to a spokesperson from private jet hire company Chapman Freeborn: “It also allows you to choose airports that are closest to your origin and destination, often smaller, quicker private terminals saving hours on airport formalities. In addition, passengers enjoy absolute privacy, more flexible baggage allowance and catering specifically tailored to their preferences.”

Passengers have several options when it comes to selecting a private jet experience. The size of the jet will determine the range of destinations that can be reached and the subsequent costs of travel. Executive private jets are designed for seating anywhere between four and 16 people, with larger planes – which cover more distance – with features such as living room areas, bedrooms and showers.

Chapman Freeborn has over 30 offices worldwide including Australia and has been chartering private jets since 1973. Some of its most popular destinations worldwide include Chicago, New York, Monaco, Dubai, Ibiza, and Paris, and from Australia include Sydney, Hobart, Gold Coast, Hamilton Island and Uluru, but it can also arrange travel to more remote locations. Pricing for the cost of jet charter varies depending on the type of aircraft and the trip length, but as a guideline, rates inclusive of landing fees, handling, navigational charges, passengers taxes, fuel, crew and catering can be anywhere from A$4,500 per hour for a Light Jet (seats four to seven people), to A$10,000 per hour for a Global Cabin (13-16 people with a flight attendant). 

Australian company Skypac has aircraft based in Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, Darwin, Perth and Melbourne and specialises in travel to remote places throughout the country including Broome, Karratha and Flinders Island in Tasmania. Kirkhope Aviation, another Australian air charter company, specialises in remote Australian charter experiences and also bespoke aviation tours for small groups. Passengers can choose from one to four day tours in areas like Tasmania, Lake Eyre and Kangaroo Island, or longer tours in Lord Howe Island, The Kimberley and Cape York in Northern Queensland. 

In a similar fashion to rental cars, one-way private jet charter means that often planes are empty on the return-leg. Technology has caught up to offer options for taking advantage of empty-leg planes and there are now apps that assist travellers. JetSmarter displays empty-leg flights and also normal private charter flights of over 3,000 scheduled private aircraft. Its search function filters by departure and arrival airports, multi-leg trips, aircraft model and age of aircraft. JetSmarter has a $6,999 annual membership fee for its customers. Another app, PrivateFly, offers a global network of over 7,000 aircraft available for all types of flights and allows flight departures to be arranged within 90 minutes. JetPartner offers similar features, but also helps search for other passengers taking the same flight, but in the opposite direction, and coordinates journeys for both parties.


Be transported in convenient luxury 


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