I travel regularly for business and have booked charter flights through a number of different private jet companies. At the beginning of the year, I was referred to Joel at Stratos. Since then, I have booked a number of flights through Stratos. His team does a great job ensuring we have a seamless travel experience. I would definitely recommend Stratos to others.
Another place private air charter will surprise you – and save you time - is on the ground. These days flying commercial aircraft means you can sometimes spend as much time on the ground as you do in the air -- making your way through boarding pass and baggage check lines, working your way through TSA procedures, and struggling through plane boarding and overhead bin competition.
WE were told to go to First Aviation Services terminal at Teterboro but our plane was at another terminal so we wasted over 45 minutes trying to find our aircraft and our agent was not at all helpful. In fact he told us someone was coming to pick us up and they never came and we had to find someone to help us get to the terminal our plane was located at. The agent asked us for our rental car info but when we landed in Naples the rental car was not at the terminal and we had to find a ride over to the other side of the air field to get our rental car. The flight was great but the handling of the pre and post flight were below normal and not what I am used to when I fly private.
So is there a cheaper way to get that entire private jet to yourself to really impress your friends and family? The answer is yes. It’s called and an empty leg, which is repositioning flight that takes place after the aircraft dropped off its last full paying charter passengers and now has to fly to another airport to pick up its next group, or sometimes for the aircraft and crew to come back to their base after dropping off customers and various combinations.
With a private air charter flight, you’ll be delighted to discover you won’t be spending time on the usual rigmarole! Instead, you’ll be directed to your charter operator’s private terminal where you’ll almost always be the only person ‘in line’ -- or if you’re flying from a privately run airport (such as Marshfield Airport, GHG) you’ll simply arrive at the time of your departure and be greeted by your pilot -- along with a ground crew that will valet park your vehicle.
When it comes to small planes, weight matters. Don't be surprised when your contact emails you for all passenger weights, and when the pilot organizes seating by weights. (You don't want the three biggest people on the right side, for instance.) Similarly, don't expect to bring two weeks of stuff for a weekend, and definitely mention if you're planning on bringing golf clubs or skis. If they don't fit, check out ShipSticks or LuggageForward, which sends your equipment beforehand for a relatively small fee.
Having used many charter companies before with mixed experiences, I can say with confidence that Stratos has the best service and highest level of professionalism of any of the charter services I have encountered. Most recently, we had an unfortunate last minute cancellation of a charter booked through another service, and Stratos came through at the last minute to find the right plane at the right price for us with under 24 hour notice. I cannot thank them enough for their professionalism as well as their willingness and ability to go above and beyond to find the right charter for us - even as a first time customer.