How to Fly on a Private Jet For Under $2,000

Remember when flying private was a fantasy reserved for rock stars and billionaires? Well, fasten your seatbelts, because the game has changed. In a world where a round-trip business class ticket on a long-haul international flight can set you back between $3,000 and a jaw-dropping $12,000, flying private for under $2,000 isn’t just a dream — it can be a smart personal finance choice.

This shift isn’t just about luxury; it’s a clever workaround to the headaches of commercial travel. You can skip the endless lines and cramped seats, jetting off in style and comfort without taking out a second mortgage. The pandemic’s silver lining? It’s turned private jet travel from an exclusive privilege into an accessible extravagance. With new companies entering the fray, the once steep prices have nosedived, making your private sky-high adventure more attainable than ever. Here’s how you can join the private jet set without burning a hole in your checking account.

Check out the charter open marketplaces

Charter open marketplaces have emerged as a game-changer in private aviation, offering a seamless way to book private flights. Services like JetASAP epitomize this trend. Launched in November 2020, JetASAP is akin to the “Airbnb for air travel,” providing a platform where fliers can directly connect with charter operators. Its user-friendly app and website offer a free feature to search for flights, and for those seeking more, there’s unlimited access for $79.99 per month or $149.99 per year.

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The beauty of JetASAP lies in its commission-free structure — users simply input their flight request, including departure airport and preferred times, and receive quotes directly from operators. With access to over 1,000 bookable daily trips, options are plentiful and can be surprisingly affordable. For instance, a recent search on the platform revealed one-way tickets as low as $1,000 for short hauls, and a flight from Miami to Chicago on a midsize jet (eight to 10 seats) for $7,500 — split that with seven friends, and it’s just $937.50 per person.

Join a membership program

For those who prefer the traditional route with a bit more guidance, numerous charter companies offer various services. These include personalized assistance in choosing the right aircraft and managing logistics from door to door. Companies like Aero, Wheels Up, Blade, Air Partner, Private Fly, and Jettly have made a name in this space.

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Aero, founded in 2019, is known for its white-glove service on sleek 16-seater black jets, offering flights to glamorous destinations such as Aspen, Los Cabos, and Nice, with tickets starting at $975 per leg. This option suits those who desire a more tailored flying experience without the commitment of long-term contracts or membership.

Share your flight with others

Fly-sharing has emerged as the most budget-friendly way to experience private aviation. Companies like JSX, Set Jet, and XO are at the forefront of this trend, offering a unique blend of luxury and affordability.

JSX, for example, operates 30-seat jets out of private terminals, with one-way tickets starting at just $249. Serving various markets and in partnership with United Airlines, JSX allows travelers to earn MileagePlus miles.

Set Jet, with a $99.95 monthly membership, offers one-way flights starting at $750, catering to spontaneous travelers who can book flights up to 24 hours before takeoff.

Lastly, XO’s shared membership, priced at $595 per year, grants access to a vast fleet of over 2,450 jets. You can book an entire charter or just a seat on a plane. For example, a recent search showed one way short-haul flights with 6 passengers for $2,495 ($415 per person). Or, you could book a seat from New York to South Florida for $1,295. XO also offers the option to crowdfund a flight. So you could get a few friends together, decide on a route, and see if anyone else is interested in booking that same route.

What does it mean for you?

In a nutshell, flying private isn’t just for the ultra-rich anymore. Thanks to the pandemic shaking things up, now anyone can snag a seat on a private jet for less than the cost of some business class tickets.

Whether you’re using an app, joining a membership program, or sharing a flight with others, there are plenty of options to get you in the sky without breaking the bank. It’s a whole new world of travel — private jets are suddenly accessible and, honestly, pretty exciting for those of us (raising my hand) who never thought we’d step foot in one.

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