I was recently approached by Ryan Franklin of JetCharters.com for a guest posting opportunity, and as someone who gets upgraded to first class a lot (thanks, US Airways) but has only flown private once (thanks, Jeff!), I asked him what he thought the main pros & cons were between flying private versus first class on a commercial jetliner. Check out his thoughts below, and thanks for sharing Ryan!
Flying First Class versus Flying Private
When you take an upscale vacation, your travel arrangements shouldn’t be anything less than luxurious. The way you travel can be just as important as where you are going or whom you are traveling with. If you are planning the ultimate getaway, it makes sense to splurge for a first class ticket or a private jet charter. So which way of luxury travel is best?
The Pros and Cons of Flying First Class
If you choose to fly commercially, a first class seat is much more enjoyable than one in coach. First class passengers are allowed to board first, and are provided with a separate agent to check in through. There is more room in first class, and some transcontinental flights offer first class seats that recline for optimal comfort. Refreshments are also better in first class, and might include snacks, free cocktails, or even full-course meals.
But even though flying first class is certainly more luxurious and comfortable than flying coach, you still have to deal with many of the same hassles. Long lines at airport security, baggage fees and restrictions, and the risk of a canceled flight are simply unavoidable aspects of flying commercially.
The Pros and Cons of Chartering a Private Jet
When you charter a jet, you get all the benefits of flying first class, but amplified. When it comes to comfort, nothing can beat flying private. There is more space, better food, and top-notch service. Plus, chartering a private jet means that you are in complete control of your flying schedule. When you fly private, you don’t need to worry about arriving to the airport hours ahead of time or worry about fly delays and cancelations. And a private jet isn’t bound to the same airports that a commercial one is, giving you greater flexibility about where you fly.
The largest downside to flying private is the matter of cost. Though it is possible to do it for a reasonable fee, chartering a jet is relatively expensive compared to flying commercially. Also, smaller jet charter companies don’t have the same brand recognition as the large commercial airlines. This means that some research will be required in order to become familiar with all the different charter companies.
Whether you decide to fly private or fly first class, choosing a luxury flight means your vacation starts as soon as you take off.