There is no doubt that Covid-19 has changed the world of travel forever. But out of its ashes comes some good news for the aviation sector with new technology emerging that should help crisscross those Picasso-esque vapour trails across the skies again from passing aircraft.
The sudden halt imposed on travel by the pandemic meant aviation was hit harder than most other sectors but as commercial aviation starts the slow road to recovery the private jet industry is experiencing a surge mainly due to the fact that it offers socially distanced travel.
“We estimate there’s more than 500 touchpoints when you fly by commercial airline in contrast to around 25-30 touchpoints when you fly private.” says Sam Farshian, CEO of a new flight comparison platform called JetHustle. “Flying by private jet means you board via uncrowded private terminals and avoid proximity or contact with hundreds of random people. Once onboard the jet you’re in a tube with only a handful of others, rather than hundreds.”
JetHustle searches for available seats on private jets in addition to seats on commercial airlines and promises to find any private jet seats at prices that are on par with major airlines such as British Airways.
“Our UK domestic private jet flights start at £189 per seat whilst our UK to Eurpope short haul private jet flights go from just £249 per seat.” says Farshian “And you still get all the benefits of flying private as if you’d chartered the entire jet, like showing up just 15 minutes before your flight, no queuing at all, breezing through a polite unobtrusive security, and flying out of exclusive VIP private terminals. You get the full rock star treatment for a fraction of the price.”
If there are no available private jet seats for your route then JetHustle will hook you up with a seat on the commercial airline of your choosing the same way as any other flight comparison website. “We’re Skyscanner or Expedia but on steroids.” Farshian declares.
The post-covid private aviation boom has also caught the attention of some of the travel industry’s major players. Lars Thuesen, whose resume reads like a who’s who of travel’s biggest companies such as Air Tours PLC and Scandinavian Airlines Systems (SAS) is one of JetHustle’s backers.
Thuesen who currently owns two airlines of his own as well as a 20% stake in the Latvian national airline Air Baltic is no stranger to aviation. “Empty seats have always been the main challenge for the whole aviation Industry. I found JetHustle’s approach so refreshing and spot on that I couldn’t resist investing” says the Danish banker and travel entrepreneur.
Another well-known Danish investor is Ebbe Dinesen, the ex-Chairman of Carlsberg Beer who decided to invest after booking a flight from London to Denmark when he heard about JetHustle during a conversation at his golf club.
“We’ve put together a dream team of investors and staff to build JetHustle into a world class air travel company.” says Max Rudd who started off as a JetHustle intern just five months ago and is already dealing with both clients and investors and looking forward to his employee share options.
“The entire industry continues to go through seismic changes and some new trends are emerging that JetHustle is perfectly positioned for. Even though the platform is in a testing phase we’re already generating revenue and selling flights well ahead of schedule, both commercial and private.” comments CEO Farshian, who is finalising corporate investment from Norweigen investment banker Morten Groven through his vehicle Fortis Mutual Funds SCC.
The aviation space has for years seen heavily-funded potential unicorns such as mammoth failure JetSmarter come and go whilst fighting to grab that elusive market share. But the recent $2.1 Billion IPO of Wheels Up on the New York Stock Exchange shines a new light on possibilities when the 2013 startup became the first ever publicly traded standalone private jet company. With other IPOs currently flying over the horizon perhaps in a post-Covid world the sky’s no longer the limit.
To find fly with JetHustle now or to find out about the official launch call +44 (0)208 064 1000 or visit www.jethustle.com.