Jet Cards Vs XO – What’s the Difference?
Not too long ago, if you wanted to fly on a private jet with guaranteed availability, your choices were fairly limited. You could own and maintain your own private plane, you could charter an entire jet as needed, purchase a fractional share or buy a jet card. Even for high net worth individuals, none of those are the most cost-effective or practical options.
Yet, in recent years, the private aviation market is booming. In fact, according to Knight Frank’s 2017 Wealth report, in the 10-year period from 2006-2016, the number of private jets in the US has increased by 34%. However, the majority of that growth can be found in alternatives to whole aircraft ownership, such as fractional ownership and the purchase of “Jet Cards” becoming increasingly popular around the world.
With fractional ownership, you are actually buying a share of a plane and typically have to make a three to five-year commitment. Think timeshare in the sky, and like a timeshare, fractional jet ownership comes with similar hassles. On the upside of fractional private jet ownership are the shared expenses, which can lower costs significantly. But of course, with those shared costs, also comes shared use, which can invite a whole set of issues that can make this option seem a lot less attractive. Most fractional jet ownership contracts come with many restrictions, most of which owners only become aware of after they sign! Enter Jet Cards.
What is a Jet Card?
On the surface, a Jet Card would seem to be the ideal compromise between booking an entire private jet charter on your own, whole ownership and fractional jet ownership. The appeal of Jet Cards is that they offer many of the advantages of fractional ownership, without long-term commitments. Basically, with a Jet Card, you purchase prepaid blocks of flying time hours, usually at a minimum starting point of 25 hours. Then, you use the card to book flights from the provider of the card, and as you fly, your flight hours are debited from the prepaid amount at an agreed rate for the type of plane you're flying in.
The main attraction to jet cards is that they come with guaranteed availability, whenever you want a jet, it will basically be available to you within the 24-hour notice. But, that kind of access comes with a price. In fact, it comes with a fixed price that locks you into the cost of a flight. Think of it like buying a very costly insurance policy. Yes, it’s there when you need it, but you are paying a lot of money for times when you are not using it. Some people need such costly insurance, many do not.
The other big issue with Jet Cards is their inflexibility. Usually, you are buying a pre-set number of hours on a specific class of jet, and you have no options to cost-effectively move between classes of aircraft should that be necessary.
A Better Way to Fly Private - XO, powered by JetSmarter Technology
There is a better way to fly private, one that in many ways truly does give the private flyer the best of all worlds – the guaranteed availability of Jet Cards, without being locked into rates that are not market friendly, or the need to pre-pay. Over the past few years many apps and business models have claimed to be the “Uber of private aviation,” but only XO, powered by JetSmarter technology, has come anywhere close to their successful business model. Our on-demand solution has completely digitized the private aviation experience and provides guaranteed availability on anything from a full private charter to a single shared seat on an existing flight, all at competitive, market favorable prices. It is truly a revolution in private aviation.
Unlike a Jet Card, with our app, there are no pre-purchased flight hours, and you are not restricted to a single aircraft. Rather simply search, see guaranteed availability options and book within seconds.
The XO Difference at a Glance
- Digital guaranteed availability at market favorable pricing
- Ability to sell unused seats to defray the cost
- Access to thousands of aircraft worldwide through our app
- Operator performance statistics per option presented
- If you would like a custom option, we provide enriched quotes with information beyond pricing to compare your options
- 24/7 customer support by aviation experts via the app, phone, and email
XO is changing everything that even the most experienced traveler thinks they know about booking and flying on a private jet.
We are creating a better way to fly private, one that provides the private flyer with guaranteed availability of flights at market friendly prices that are often less than any other way to book or fly privately, such as Jet Cards, Private Charter, or Fractional Jet Ownership.
Over the past few years many apps and business models have claimed to be the “Uber of private aviation,” but only XO, powered by JetSmarter technology has come anywhere close to Uber’s successful business model. Our on-demand solution has completely digitized the private aviation experience and provides guaranteed availability on anything from a full private charter to a single shared seat on an existing flight, all at competitive, market favorable prices.
It is truly a revolution in private aviation.
If you would like more information about this post, or any of our programs, please feel free to contact our team at +1-888-80-FLY-XO or schedule a call.
JetSmarter may offer a number of programs including whole aircraft charter, for which JetSmarter will act solely as your agent in arranging the flight, and Public Charters, for which JetSmarter will act as principal in buying and reselling the air transportation. JetSmarter does not own or operate any aircraft. All flights are performed by FAA-licensed and DOT-registered air carriers.