Monday, August 03, 2020

The large jet card companies all quote their prices in slightly different ways. Some of them include fuel, some of them add fuel surcharges (ie costs above a fixed allowance per gallon), some include Federal Excise Tax and others don't. Another item to ask about is the reservation period for "Peak Days" - the busiest travel days of the year. On normal days you can usually request a jet within 10-12 hours but this increases significantly for Peak Days when demand is much higher.

Other key jet card features that can vary between providers are i) the term of the agreement, 12 months is a common period, and some providers offer 18 months or two years ii) what happens at the end of the term, most providers will let you roll over unused hours or money into a new card, or will simply reset the fixed hourly price for each aircraft, iii) what catering is included, most providers include basic catering with extra fees for additional provisions.

When you're comparing jet cards you'll first need to decide what type of aircraft you want to be in - so whether it's a light jet, mid jet, heavy jet etc.  Here's an example of actual prices and services for three of the leading jet card providers in light jets.

Compare Light Jet Cards NetJets Air Partner Sentient Jet
Aircraft Phenom 300 Light Sterling Light Priority
Hours 25 25 25
Response Time (hrs) 10 12 10
Quoted Price $175,000 $117,500 $131,800
Fuel Fees Inc. Inc. Inc.
Fuel Surcharge Add Inc Inc.
FET Add Inc Inc.
Catering Inc. Std (+Premium) Inc. Std (+Premium) Inc.
Peak Surcharge Inc. 5% 5% 
Term 18 Months No Expire No Expire


Use the table below to make your own comparisons of the providers and aircraft that you're looking at. To get a hard copy of this checklist table download the fully inclusive Guide on the right of this page. The appendix to the Guide includes a checklist.

Compare Cards Card 1 Card 2 Card 3
Response Time      
Quoted Price      
Fuel Fees      
Fuel Surcharge      
Peak Surcharge      

Notes: NetJets has its own fleet of newer aircraft. Sentient and Air Partner both broker their aircraft, working with a select group of operators. See the leading jet card providers for more details on these business models. Sentient offers two age categories for customer to choose. Their "Select" includes aircraft manufactured in model year 1999 or before. Their "Preferred" are the newest aircraft available in the market, model year 2000 or newer. AirPartner also offers two age categories. Their JetCard uses the latest aircraft on the market, model year 2000 or newer. Their JetCard Sterling uses aircraft from 1994 or newer, with an average age of 10 years.

The Federal Excise Tax (FET) rate is currently 7.5%.



Detailed Jet Card Comparisons

Get side by side comparisons of the leading membership and jet card programs in North America.

Compare all the main features. See the differences.

Details on NetJets, Flexjet, Sentient, Wheels Up, Airshare, Air Partner, Magellan Jets, XO and more.

Plus get fractional jet comparisons, details on charter operators and the SherpaReport Guide to Private Aviation, which walks through the different products and their pros and cons.

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