Private jet travel predictions and trends for the UK and Europe

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Making private jet travel predictions is not as reliable as it once was. Previously, we could seek comparisons from past results, evaluate the present and projected economic climate, and fall back on our gut feelings to measure future trends with some degree of accuracy. Thanks to COVID-19, aviation sectors like private jet travel are suffering from the turbulence associated with a raft of ever-changing circumstances. However, there are some positives that have emerged during the past 12 months, positives that allow us to make some reliably informed predictions regarding the UK, European, and global private jet industry.

With the increase in vaccines, the growth in private jet travel for business, and the possibility of a surge in travel in the second half of 2021, there are still some cautious indicators of what the future might hold.

Making business connections in person

According to an article published in Forbes, before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, global business travel was worth an estimated $1.3 trillion per year over the preceding years. With businesses now shying away from the concept of national and international conferences and conventions, private jet charter is being more widely utilized by senior business executives who want to keep their lines of communication open.

Following on from this trend which blossomed in 2020, the demand for private jet charter among business executives wishing to avoid confined spaces and increased risks of infection shows no sign of slowing. The flexibility of private jet charter, which makes arranging meetings in more remote locations or ‘safe cities’, with access to regional or private airfields, is helping to grow the trend even further as the year progresses.

On the league table of aviation predictions for 2021, private jet charter for business is once again staking claims to being among the largest growth sectors across the industry.

Remote working and private jets

The roll-out of vaccinations in the UK is being hailed as a major win in the battle against the virus. However, even with this success there is still bound to be some degree of caution exercised, giving rise to another relatively safe travel niche prediction for 2021 that remote working is not going anywhere soon. With a good wi-fi connection, a nearby landing strip, and access to private jet travel, the modern office can be wherever you want it to be.

Many Europeans are privy to a second home from which to work or holiday in relative safety. Research by the global estate agents franchise chain, RE/MAX reveals that one in six Europeans own a second home, however, it must be noted that the prevalence of second home ownership varies dramatically from country to country.

Many of these second homes are located in areas far from crowded centers of commerce and habitation, making private jet charter the safe and convenient way of reaching any destination. From the beaches of the Canary Islands to the forests and lakes of Scandinavia, private aircraft and local landing strips will continue to drive the popularity of the remote working solution.

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Are Jet Cards the future of private jet hire?

Although already well-established in the USA private jet card ownership is only starting to make its presence felt across the UK and Europe. With this in mind, it would be fair to make a private jet prediction for 2021 that jet cards will become an increasingly popular accessory in the wallets of large corporations and private business executives. The system is simple, a jet card is a debit card-style program allowing the owner to prepay for private jet flights at a fixed hourly rate. The concept is the same as topping up any pre-paid card to access a service or product.

Smaller aircraft with big scope

As far as private jet trends for 2021 go we can expect to see an uptick in the demand for entry-level or smaller aircraft. While larger jet aircraft may prove beyond the budget of some individuals or organizations, turboprop, and smaller aircraft can fill the needs of many who want to taste the benefits of private jet charter. For shorter routes and less elaborately equipped airfields, smaller aircraft may even prove the advantage of reaching more remote and less well-serviced destinations in comfort and safety.

Changes in popular travel destinations

So far, many countries have chosen to keep their borders closed for the majority of international travel. For that reason, another 2021 private jet travel prediction is the rise in remote and rural tourism. With the UK and European destinations like the Scottish Isles and Highlands, the Welsh coast, the vineyards of France, Portugal, Spain and Italy, and the mountains of central and eastern Europe, private jet travel is the ideal way to skip the traditional favourites and avoid the crowds.

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Are you ready for Bleisure travel?

The term Bleisure travel has been coined to describe the practice of combining both business and pleasure and is tipped to become another one of the hot private jet travel predictions for the coming year. As a practice being promoted across multiple sectors from large corporations, individuals, and government organizations, private jet charter and bleisure travel offer the opportunity for executives to combine deal-sealing business trips with some well-deserved leisure time in a safe environment.

Thanks to the growing availability of private jet charter, bleisure travel is seen as a new form of incentive for executives, sales teams, partners, and clients to cement relationships, along with being a tool for positive team-building. Another feature of bleisure which is finding favour is the opportunity to incorporate multiple legs into the travel itinerary. This multiple-leg option will open up the possibilities of offering different activities in different locations and including more members of a team or an organization.

Private jets and the future

Electric-/Hybrid-powered aircraft– The idea of electric- or hybrid-powered aircraft is slowly becoming a reality – even during a global pandemic. Although electrically-powered aircraft have been around for some time, it is only now that real strides are being made in the direction of commercial electric-/hybrid-powered flight. Finnair has put pen to paper in a letter of interest to acquire up to 20 Hear Aerospace’s ES-19 electric aircraft, seating up to 19 passengers each.

It may take some time before we see electric- or hybrid-powered aircraft regularly taking to the skies, but with forward-thinking and the growing demand for sustainability, that day is steadily drawing closer.

Sustainability – Sustainability is fast becoming a core value for every successful aviation business. The challenge to reduce emissions and combat climate change is no longer a vague idea, it has become a working reality. The sustainability factor has become a core segment across every aspect of the aviation industry, including private jet charter.

From better MRO material management, efficient fuel-consuming engines, to carbon offsetting, outdated and wasteful practices are being eliminated and sustainability is now a contributing sales factor in every sector of the industry.

Health and sanitation – Some of the greatest recent changes in aviation involve health, safety, and sanitation. Thankfully, the private jet industry had taken the lead in this aspect and implemented strict procedures and regulations to ensure the safety of everyone who flies privately.

Right across the aviation sector, at airlines, airports, check-in facilities, and onboard, the latest safety and sanitation protocols are constantly being rolled out to ensure greater safety for everyone involved. With new advances in screening, personal interactions, aircraft cleansing, and better and safer ways of doing things, flying is set to become substantially safer. While many countries are still considering the viable use of COVID-19 travel passports the sector is bound to witness many more positive changes as the year progresses.

More documentation – With the possibility of a huge surge in the demand for travel due to the vaccine roll-outs, there is likely to be a greater need for proper procedures influencing future travel plans and the submission of documents. The need to present negative test results, evidence of past infection, or inoculation will give rise to more documentation (or e-services) covering every step of the flight process, from booking to boarding. With the success of the vaccine roll out in the UK, there are sure to be changes down the line that will get you flying once again, in confidence and safety.

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