Private Jet Shortage Leads to Industry-wide Dilemmas

People exiting a vehicle greeting a pilot of a private jet

When the Covid-19 pandemic began in March of 2020, the private jet travel sector slowly ground to a halt along with so many other industries. With ever-changing restrictions and unknowns at every turn, the logistics of travel became overwhelming. Suddenly, the vast majority of travelers, whether for business or pleasure, decided that it was a better idea to just stay home for a while. For the next few months, the private jet industry watched and waited patiently with the rest of the world to see what would happen.

While 2020 produced ebbs and flows in private jet travel due to varying and unpredictable travel restrictions, by the time the calendar flipped to 2021, demand exploded. The resurgence and exponential growth that the industry is seeing now is more than anyone was expecting. Anyone able to afford a private flight has decided it is the perfect time to take advantage of that opportunity. With the influx of new demand and a much too small current supply of private jet availability, the supply side of the supply and demand equation is historically out of balance.

Why the sudden outsized demand for private jet travel? For many, the idea of sitting on a packed commercial airplane with strangers suddenly seemed less than appealing. The seclusion and safety offered by a private flight took on new meaning to the Covid-wary traveler, along with the appeal of no crowds. Some other contributing factors are:

• No logistical gymnastics at huge commercial airports.
• The number of commercial flights was greatly reduced by the airlines.
• Labor issues within the commercial airline sector.
• Much more convenient and relaxing travel experience.
There are new and unforseen factors that are affecting the private jet domain, such as:
• Maintenance parts for jets have become much more difficult to get, resulting in delayed repairs.
• Jet fuel deliveries have become delayed due to a shortage of truck drivers.
• Private jet owners are chartering less, playing catch-up with their own businesses or personal travel.
• The inventory of available aircraft to purchase is at a decade low inflection point, severely limiting the supply of
jets available for customers to purchase and charter.

What is the repercussion of all of these snowballing trends? The industry is in a dilemma that has led to much more expensive costs for private jet travel industry-wide and little to no excess aircraft availability for private jet operators to provide flexibility or options to even their most frequent flyers. Clients who used to be able to call and plan their travel on a moment’s notice are finding that they now have to plan weeks in advance to procure their trips while paying significantly higher prices than in the recent past. And it is not just the private jet travel sector being impacted. Hotels and rental car agencies are also seeing historic shortages. The lack of available rental cars and limited hotel rooms at any price further complicates travel planning.

But don’t let the current environment be a deterrent to traveling by private jet. There are several steps to be taken to mitigate the shortcomings of the current market.

• Planning well in advance for your trip is the number one factor in finding the right aircraft at the best price.
• Being flexible with any travel plans and avoiding the usual holidays and busy times will certainly help too.
• When booking, be sure of your plans. With very little excess supply of charter aircraft, changes after booking
may not be possible, potentially disrupting or cancelling plans.
• Working regularly with a trusted operator like Sun Air Jets will allow charter customers to find the flights that
best fit your needs.

In the current market, even traveling by private jet can be somewhat stressful. Whether you’re on your first trip or are a seasoned private jet traveler, rest assured that the experts at Sun Air Jets will be doing everything possible to ensure a safe, comfortable, unmatched experience on every flight. For more information or for assistance with your flight plans, call our dedicated charter team at 805-389-9335 or visit

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