Booking a charter flight isn’t something that most people are familiar with, and if this is your first time going with a charter plane company over flying commercial, the entire experience can seem a little overwhelming. Flying charter offers a lot of advantages over traditional air travel, including the ability to go places that commercial planes don’t fly, the ability to tailor a schedule to meet your specific needs, and—perhaps most important of all—avoiding that cramped middle seat between two strangers. Before you book your first charter flight, though, here are some questions you should ask to make sure you have a safe and stress-free flight.
1: Do You Own Your Planes?Some charter airline companies just rent their aircraft, while others own a fleet. Generally you will get better service and more flexibility to customize your trip if you go with a company that owns its own airplanes. In addition, a charter plane company that has its own fleet will often have more control over safety and maintenance.
2: Can I See Some Information About the Safety of Your Aircraft?Any reputable charter airline company will be willing to show you all their safety information, including things like:
- Maintenance records
- History of accidents or incidents for an aircraft or a pilot
- Total hours your pilot has flown (250 is required to get a commercial license, but many companies require 2,500 or more)
- Any health issues with the pilot(s) that could impact your safety in flight (and whether there are one or two pilots on your flight)