The Best Way to Fly Private to a Yacht

Posted May 21, 2022 in Aviation by Doug Gollan

Northrop & Johnson partner Private Jet Card Comparisons helps consumers find the right private aviation solutions based on their unique flying needs. The subscription service costs $250 per year and provides users with updated data and unbiased analysis. Recently, Navigator spoke with Founder and Editor Doug Gollan.

Where did you get the idea?
I was researching an article for Forbes about jet cards. I was surprised to find out there were dozens of companies selling cards and private jet memberships. As I dug in, I found there were a lot of differences. It’s not a one-size-fits-all solution. Contracts run over 30 pages long. It’s a high-ticket item, and it’s a devil in details type purchase. There’s lots of fine print. To help me analyze who was doing what, I started to put the information from the different companies into a spreadsheet to compare it more easily. After I had written the story, I had all of the information that had taken me nearly a year to compile. There was no independent buyer’s guide comparing the programs, so I figured that people who were spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to fly privately would appreciate saving time in the research process and being able to compare the different programs.

What are some of the things subscribers can compare?
There are over 65 variables, from hourly rates to the types of aircraft offered, where you can fly, how they price your trip, lead time to book and cancel, extra charges for WiFi, deicing, peak days, catering, special discounts, pet policies, carbon offset programs, who owns the company, how long they have been around, it’s almost endless. We track over 50 providers and more than 250 programs with over 40,000 data points.

Are there a lot of changes?
Last year we made 137 updates, and through Q1 of 2022, we have posted 32 updates.

How does it work?
You visit and subscribe online with your favorite credit card. The subscription is valid for 12 months. You can download the comparison spreadsheet and do your own analysis. There’s a guide and tutorial video. Or you can use our Decider service from your smartphone. After you subscribe, you answer a few questions about your flying needs, and we prepare a custom analysis that identifies the best providers and specific programs for your needs.

Is this just for jet cards?
No. We have a guide to on-demand charter brokers, a fractional ownership guide, and even a guide to shared private jet and by-the-seat private flight options. We also provide both online and telephone support. There is a calendar integration so subscribers can schedule a 1-to-1 consultation. I think it’s important to note that we don’t accept referral fees from jet companies, and we also don’t sell subscribers’ contact information. There are several lead-generation sites. They make money by selling subscriber information to jet companies as sales leads and pushing users to a company that is paying them on the backend. Our only mission is to provide unbiased, updated, quantitative data and personalized assistance to help subscribers find the right solution for their needs.

Is there anything else you would add?
Many people have multiple private aviation solutions. In some cases, they own their plane or have a fractional share and then a jet card. Many use cards and then brokers for some one-off flights where their program doesn’t work well. More and more users have multiple cards based on different flying profiles. It’s like cars in your driveway. You have a convertible for the beach house and an SUV for the place at the lake. A lot of subscribers begin thinking that they have to make a singular choice, and often that’s not the case.

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