High stakes: Private jets gain popularity but come with a fog of costs

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For many of the corporate clients of London-based private jet management company FlyEliteJets, private aircraft are not so much a luxury as the best way to squeeze the maximum value from each minute of their time.

“These are fast-growing companies and the executives have to be in multiple places at once,” explains Chris Williams-Martin, founder of FlyEliteJets. “It increases their productivity if they can jet out of a smaller airport, go to two or three cities and jet back. They’ve done a day’s work on the plane and in meetings, there are no hotel costs and they’re still home in the evening.”

“They’re picked up by limo, there’s a 15-minute check-in, they’re taken to the jet steps and take off within minutes, so there is no dead time there. Moreover, private jets are quicker than scheduled jets; they fly at a different altitude [usually higher where there is less traffic] and much more directly, again saving…

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