by Sarah Smith, a writer who sometimes works with Adagold Aviation
When it emerged that a Middle Eastern family had booked a private jet via an iPhone app, that sparked an era of changes in the way individuals and businesses are now booking their private flights. As the majority of wealthy clients have access to mobile technology – they are using it for virtually everything. So it is no wonder that mobile is also changing the way private jet companies are conducting their chartering business.
Private jet companies embrace the changes
As the market for this business was already prepared and exceeding the original forecasts, app bookings have more than doubled and is expect to grow as much as 15 per cent within the next year.
As a result, these companies are having to re-engineer their mobile strategy in order to accommodate these needs.
Because such companies are embracing these changes, they are also discovering the main target audience for app bookings are business fliers who are experiencing cancellations and delays for regular flights.
Although there are benefits to booking flights via a mobile app, there are downsides as well.
One of which is large sums of money must be verified before the aircraft booking is completed.
Which means, it is at least a two-step process before these transactions are confirmed.
In the meantime, one business – BlackJet, a charter company based in San Francisco, is using mobile technology for businesses and individuals who book individual seats versus whole jets.
Since implementation of the mobile technology, the aircraft company has booked approximately half of their charters from travellers using their company’s app.
The group that this covers, however, consists of the most technical savvy because they like the convenience of being able to book what they need with approximately 10 taps on their mobile phone.
Gearing up for success with mobile apps
To make sure this market is addressed appropriately, the mobile infrastructure provided to the BlackJet group allows them to download a jet app in a format that is similar to Netflix.
As a result, people who maintain a charters membership fee of $2,500 annually will have the convenience of downloading the jet app to use it as needed.
To date, this type of accessibility is directed toward businesses who can afford to pay for their employee’s flights, specifically when they need to travel from one destination to another to conduct business activities.
In the near future, mobile apps for flight booking will also be opened up to millions of other customers to use.
Once again, in the USA, Miami-based Apogee Jets, a luxury boutique-style provider of private aircraft, has launched a new, user-friendly and responsive website and a mobile flight scheduling app for users to plan and schedule private aircraft from anywhere with ease.
While this new strategy is changing the face of how flight booking is done, some of these major companies are not expecting face-to-face traditional booking to be completely eliminated.
Specifically, since there are specific markets that prefers to have face-to-face contact.
Significantly in Australia it is the mining companies who are fuelling a rise in private jet chartering.
Many companies are putting on private tours for investors from China and India.
According to Osman Bahemia, sales and marketing manager, many mine owners turn to his company to find the right jet to impress investors while also suiting their budget.
Mobile app flight booking is quickly gearing up and it is taking a front seat in sparking changes in the jet industry.
Both the wealthy and business travellers are being provided with an opportunity to book flights from an app prior to travelling from one destination to another.
Currently, there are at least two strong markets that the jet industry is catering to and they include the wealthy and businesses.
Based on the present forecast, there will be an increase in usage by as much 15 per cent within the next year.
Sarah Smith is a keen blogger who likes to write about aviation and technology. She sometimes works with Adagold Aviation, a leading independent provider of private aircraft charters in Australia.