Private Jet Safety to Consider During the Pandemic
The phrase “private jet safety” has taken on a new meaning during the COVID-19 pandemic. “Safety” now focuses on cabin air, surface disinfection, social distancing, airport availability, and stringent travel regulations.
Despite the pandemic, charter air travel is still available to those that qualify. Previously there has been a surge in chartered evacuation flights from coronavirus hot zones. Now, medical teams and supplies are still being transported by private jet charter but most non-essential travel has been completely halted. In fact, proof of ‘shelter in place‘ is required before a charter can be booked.
Here are three factors to consider before chartering an on-demand flight during a pandemic.
Who Can Fly
Pre-COVID, anyone with proper travel documentation could travel on a private jet. However, private jet safety regulations have become much more stringent. Now, if you display coronavirus symptoms such as fever, coughing, and shortness of breath, you may be denied boarding privileges. Likewise, if you have recently traveled to a high-risk area, you may need to provide a Travel Health Declaration.
Stratos has also been getting private jet safety questions about vulnerable passengers. Elderly persons and those with compromised immune systems must weigh the risks of travel. If you do need to fly to another home, a private jet charter can minimize many of the safety risks.
Private jets in our network usually carry between 8-14 passengers, limiting your exposure to large groups. Smaller aircraft are also easier to disinfect between flights, and the cabin air is refreshed frequently while airborne. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) has an excellent summary of pre-travel considerations for vulnerable travelers.
Where You Can Fly
The list of destinations has shrunk considerably as nations and airports have gone into lockdown. International flights to Canada, Europe, China, and the Middle East are severely restricted, as are domestic flights. Many destinations have actually closed their main tourism sites. This is all due to the fact that non-essential travel is becoming restricted.
Since the government pandemic response evolves daily, flight planning has become very challenging. Your best bet is to maintain contact with your Stratos Jet Charter agent, who can inform you if there are any changes to your flight itinerary.
The CARES Act
On March 27th, 2020, the Federal Government signed the Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). One of the benefits for travelers is the suspension of the 7.5% Federal Excise Tax on air transportation for the remainder of 2020. This measure is designed to aid jet companies and passengers by reducing the financial burden of air transportation. This tax reduction may encourage you to choose a private jet charter as an alternative to commercial flight during the pandemic.
However, unless you have proof of a ‘shelter in place’ at your destination, you may be denied travel.
At Stratos Jet Charters, our mandate has always been to provide the highest level of private jet safety for our travelers. This hasn’t changed. As the pandemic continues to evolve, our safety standards will as well.
For travel-related questions during the pandemic, please call Stratos Jets—888-593-9066.