Uber? Lyft? Forget about it. On-demand transportation takes flight with a new generation of mobile apps.
Ready, jet set, go: JetSmarter is attracting celebs like Jay Z, who is reportedly an investor, and NBA superstar Carmelo Anthony and his wife, TV and radio personality La La, who recently flew from New York to Miami with the service. shown: A Gulfstream IV available through JetSmarter.
When apps such as Uber, Lyft, Gett, and Via launched, the digital startups served as major disrupters for the private car industry. Now, a wave of new apps—including FlightTime, Skyjet, Blade, and JetSmarter—provides the same convenience for private air travel. “The private jet industry was very archaic,” says Sergey Petrossov, CEO and founder of JetSmarter, a mobile service that offers access to private jet flights in US cities such as New York, Chicago, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles, and globally in hubs like London, Paris, Geneva, and Dubai. “Its brick-and-mortar process of picking up the phone, speaking to numerous people, and waiting for hours in order to charter a jet was outdated and inconvenient. I wanted to change that and create accessibility for the market.”
Appealing to a range of entrepreneurs and deal makers (Jay Z is reportedly an investor), JetSmarter offers three tiers of services, including JetCharter, or whole aircraft bookings, which is available in 170 countries; JetDeals, or free one-way flights for app members; and JetShuttle, which offers free or discounted seats on already established private jet flights.
“Without mobile technology, JetSmarter would not exist. We use it to aggregate supply and demand with predictive algorithms,” says Petrossov of JetSmarter’s $9,000 annual membership program, which also includes concierge services for hotels, exotic cars, hard-to-get tables, and access to other exclusive events. “We’re allowing people to travel a lot more for a fraction of the cost.” And in sky-high style.