Private Jets: Freedom of flight

When time means money, opting to fly by private jet is a fast, flexible and comfortable travel solution.

Clients are not locked into a long-term contract or tied to using a specific aircraft type which means we can help them choose the right jet for their requirements.

he time-saving benefits and versatility of private aviation is what makes it so appealing. Particularly in the case of business travel, clients are able to maximise their efficiency by avoiding busy airport hubs and working to their own schedule. In the case of multi-site visits, for example, it often simply isn’t possible on scheduled services.

Steve Huddlestone
Chapman Freeborn,
Private Jet Charter Manager

Chapman Freeborn Airchartering was established in the UK in 1973 and has offices worldwide including North America, Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia. The company originally specialised in cargo aviation, but it soon expanded into chartering private jets. Steve Huddlestone, Chapman Freeborn’s private jet charter manager, says, “In 1987 we set up the charter operation to support David Bowie’s ‘Glass Spider Tour’ and since then the company has developed a niche expertise managing charter flights for entertainment industry clients. Our clients also include many of the world’s most respected companies from across a spectrum of industries – including financial services, property, manufacturing, and technology.

“In recent years the industry has been flooded with start-ups looking to create Uber-type booking platforms for private jets – but we’re very much at the traditional end of the spectrum when it comes to arranging charters for our clients. Clients can email or pick up the phone and ask us for anything. Sometimes that might be a last-minute itinerary change, or arranging to have a particular bottle of wine and catering from their favourite restaurant on board.”

As a charter broker, Chapman Freeborn offers access to a wide range of aircraft types – from small jets for short-hops to large cabin aircraft for international travel. “Clients are not locked into a long-term contract or tied to using a specific aircraft type,” explains Mr Huddlestone, “which means we can help them choose the right jet for their requirements. The same client might want to use a very light jet (VLJ) one week and a long-range heavy jet the next.

“For those that want the practicality of flying private, but without the price tag of larger jets, aircraft like Cessna Citation Mustang and the Embraer Phenom 100 are among our most popular models for short flights of up to two hours. VLJs provide a level of flexibility that scheduled services cannot match, combining multiple site visits into a single day. However, VLJs are more about functionality than comfort.

“At the other end of the scale, large-cabin, long range aircraft such as the Gulfstream G650 and Dassault Falcon 7X and 8X are popular with our clients for their spacious interiors and state-of-the-art technology. Luxury jets of this calibre allow for non-stop travel on routes like London to Sao Paulo and Paris to Hong Kong.”

Chapman Freeborn is able to arrange charters to virtually any airport worldwide. “In the last 12 months we’ve arranged flights to over 800 different destinations across every continent – including Antarctica,” says Mr Huddlestone. “Costs vary significantly and depend on many factors such as route, aircraft type, payload and aircraft availability. To give you indications though: London – Nice – London with four passengers on a VLJ like a Cessna 510 Mustang or Embraer Phenom 100 would be approximately €7,500 – €9,000. Whereas a one-way flight from London to Cape Town on a long range private jet would be roughly €100,000 – €120,000.”

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