Updated: Jun 30
For young people of significant financial means, the decision to invest in a private jet may be more than simply a luxury lifestyle purchase. It could also offer greater freedom to travel than might otherwise be possible this year as the world continues to battle the Coronavirus pandemic.
At present, the earliest that international travel in or out of the UK for holiday purposes might be possible is May 17th, although business travel is permitted now. However, even that date could be optimistic as many countries are on the UK’s red list of places where people cannot travel without requiring a fortnight in travel quarantine upon their return. With a third wave sweeping across Europe, there is no certainty over what the state of play will be in May or during the summer months, but clearly anyone who does travel is likely to feel uncomfortable and possibly unsafe sharing an airliner with hundreds of other passengers. This may be why private jet sales have recently spiked in a number of countries. Broker Colibri Aircraft revealed last week that sales were up ten per cent in 2020. While the bulk of these were in the US, they were also up in Europe. Some of this is in response to commercial flights being grounded, but also provides a safer way to travel without complex contact-tracing requirements, alone or with household staff. Writing recently for Business Insider, pilot Thomas Pallini said the hottest property in the private jet market at present could be the Cirrus Vision jet. The plane costs US$2 million (£1.46 million), which is less than most models. Its relative economy comes from having just one (roof mounted) engine, as well as its diminutive size at just 30.7 ft long and 5.1 ft wide. Mr Pallini described the jet as “the perfect plane for the post-pandemic world”, noting it only requires one pilot but can take up to six passengers, while the training and licensing requirements are less stringent than required for a two-engine jet. It may just be that for those who have the money, a private jet could be the best way to manage a holiday overseas this year.