City’s fliers opt for private charter jets

Sumeet Pradhan, 35, a senior management executive with a Goregoan-based production house, flies out of the city at least twice a week for work. However, he is never bound by formalities such as getting to the airport an hour before his flight departs or standing in long check-in queues.

About six months ago, Prad-han’s company tied-up with a city-based private charter firm to ferry its employees on business trips. “I’ve been spoilt. But it’s hardly a luxury anymore,” said Pradhan, an Andheri resident, adding that his job entails movie promotions in up to four different cities in a day.

The growth in chartered jet bookings in the last year shows that several city fliers are opting to fly in private charter planes.

Taj Air, a private charter company, witnessed a 30% growth in business between April 2011 and March 2012 compared to the year before. Invision Air, another private charter company, got five registrations for its jet card membership programme in less than a week after it was launched this month. The programme offers people the use of private jets with investments varying from Rs33.75 lakh for 25 hours to Rs1.2 crore for 100 hours.

Operators said streamlining of international operations of private charter services through a dedicated facility at the airport has helped. Also, frequent film promotion sorties and demand generated by the IPL have spurred flight movements.