Almost every private air traveler asks the question: When is the best time to book a charter flight? Or how far in advance should I book a private jet charter? Well, here is everything you need to know.
Do I Need to Give a Lot of Advance Notice to Book a Private Jet Charter or Can I Book Last Minute?
A good rule of thumb is to book with as much advance notice as possible. Unlike with commercial flights where you may find good values with a shorter time frame before departure, the best values on private jet charter are found when there is a greater amount of advance notice. The reason for this is that providing a longer amount of advance notice will give you access to the greatest number of aircraft choices for your charter, which is also the key to find the best value. Charter flights with a good value are often the first to be booked and thus may be unavailable when you try to book closer to departure date. In short, when you book with more advance notice, you will have access to private jet charters that provide the best value and can secure the right deal for your needs.
When is the Best Time to Book a Private Jet Charter?
With private jet charters, more notice time is better than less. It is generally accepted that to secure the best aircraft for your trip at the best price, the ideal time to book a private jet charter is 1-2 months ahead of departure date.
Why is 1-2 Months’ Notice Needed?
With 1-2 months of advance notice, you will have access to more choices and options of aircrafts and flights that meet your needs. If you wait until a time closer to your departure date you will find fewer options and may find that the only private jet available is not the best fit for your trip and may be pricier than the options available earlier. For example, you may find that you’d have to book a 20-seat aircraft when you only needed a 4-6 seat aircraft. To avoid this scenario, booking 1-2 months ahead of time gives you the best chance of securing the right jet at the best price.
Do Most People Book Private Jet Charter 1-2 Months before Departure?
No. In fact, nearly ¾ of all private jet charters are booked within two weeks of departure. This means that these clients are all competing to find the best private jets for their needs, at the best price. Likely they will find far fewer good values for their charter as the best-priced options will likely have been secured months before. Facing far more limited options and price points, these clients may find that the available private jets are not well-suited for their needs and may be priced higher than they preferred. Again, to avoid this scenario, 1-2 months advance notice is recommended. This time frame allows the best chance to secure both a good value and a good fit for your trip.
If I Have Less than 1-2 Months Advance Notice, Can I Still Book a Private Jet Charter?
Yes. Private jet charter providers understand that there are times when you simply cannot give 1-2 months’ notice ahead of your flight. This does not mean you are closed out from booking one. In those instances, you may still find a private jet with quick turnaround time when you use a reliable provider. These providers will work quickly to locate and secure an aircraft and crew and get you off the ground usually within a matter of hours.
Will I Pay More for a Private Jet Charter if I Book on Short Notice?
Likely, yes. To accommodate your needs on short notice, private jet charter providers will have fewer options to offer so you may have to select a higher-priced aircraft even if it would not be your first choice. For example, you may find that the aircraft available are either larger or smaller than your needs, or that there are only older aircrafts still available when you would have preferred a newer one. There are simply less choices and thus less budget-friendly options. For these reasons, booking with as much advance notice as possible will enable you to find the best value for your private air travel.
Do the Same Notice Rules Apply to an Empty Leg Flight?
No. If you are seeking an empty leg flight (a flight scheduled to fly without any passengers), you should book no more than two weeks before departure. The reason for this is that these flights may be cancelled close to departure date. Operators like to have their aircraft booked out by the week of the trip. There may be some seats available but only on certain days. These options get even slimmer in the last couple of days before the trip.
If you do book one of these empty leg flights, you may save up to 75% off standard private jet charter prices. But beware that unlike conventional private jet charters, there is a greater risk that your empty leg flight will be grounded as these flights may be cancelled shortly before departure date. There are also often stricter schedules and little or no catering and amenities available.
Airacer is a reliable private jet charter provider who makes private jet charter accessible and affordable and encourages all inquiries. If you are considering booking a private jet charter for your next trip, you are welcomed to use our free cost estimator and request a quote. Our professional flight consultants are always ready to help you with the most tailored and cost-effective jet charter service.