Should You Consider an Older Aircraft for a Private Jet Rental?
Choosing the right private jet rental for your charter flight is one of the most important steps in the booking process.
- Is it the right size?
- Does it have the required inflight amenities?
- Most importantly, is it safe?
Many travelers might assume that older aircraft are less safe than newer ones, but that’s not really the case. Every aircraft, whether it’s a state-of-the-art Gulfstream G650 or a venerable GII, is required to maintain an airworthiness certificate. To do this, owners and/or operators must periodically inspect and maintain their aircraft to standards set by the Federal Aviation Administration. The time between overhauls (TBO) and the type of maintenance required varies between aircraft. So long as the aircraft is within its remaining service life, you can assume your charter jet is as safe as one that just rolled off of the production line. The aforementioned Gulfstream GII has been flying for nearly 50 years!
Aircraft Operators Are Key to Safety
Similar to an older model car that purrs like a kitten, older private jets can provide years of worry-free service. However, it requires a significant commitment to servicing and routine maintenance. In the world of charter aviation, this task falls to the operating company. Not all charter operators are equal, regardless of whether they voluntarily participate in a third-party safety-auditing program such as ARGUS or Wyvern. For instance, an operator might only have an ARGUS Gold certificate (Platinum is the highest standard), but they utilize an extensive network of repair stations to properly maintain their aircraft. Not only does having their own maintenance facility lowers cost for routine maintenance, it creates a culture of safety and operational excellence within the company.
Maintaining Older Aircraft
There are several challenges to maintaining older aircraft, not the least of which is the expense. Older parts are more likely to have unexpected maintenance issues, and there’s usually some item that is nearing the end of its service life. In other cases, parts for older aircraft can sometimes be hard to find, which makes maintenance more complicated. Additionally, while it’s possible to modernize older aircraft, it can be cost prohibitive. As a result, updates are typically done as needed, over time.
Aging Avionics Systems
Older aircraft generally have avionics that utilize older technology. These systems may not limit the aircraft’s operating ability, however, newer avionics provide pilots with enhanced situational awareness and allow them to make more informed flying decisions.
Expanding Your Margin of Safety
As a private aviation consumer, you can expand your margin of safety simply by selecting the right aircraft for the mission. It can also improve your overall flying experience. For example, just because a particular jet has seven seats does necessarily mean you should pack it to capacity. For a nominal difference in price, you can step up to a private jet rental with a slightly larger cabin that will substantially increase your travel experience:
- More storage capacity
- Increased leg and shoulder room
- Ability to move about the cabin
Looking for a private jet rental that meets your expectations for safety and comfort? Stratos Jet Charters only works with ARGUS-accredited operators to ensure the highest standard of client safety.