How to reinvent regional flying
March 25, 2020
Private jet operator JetSuite has rebranded as JSX. Julie Baxter finds out about its plans to grow as a U.S. regional airline
IDENTIFY YOUR PITCH
JSX promotes itself as a hop-on jet service with all the style of private charter flights but without the high price-tag. Passengers get free snacks, drinks and bags and Business-class equivalent leg-room.
FOCUS ON YOUR USE
Founder Alex Wilcox explains: “There is a lot of talk about personalisation but I think for many airlines the customer is still just a number. We aim to truly personalise the short-haul regional flying experience through our staff and onboard service and believe there is a gap in the market for this bread-and-butter short-haul commuter business.”
PREPARE YOUR PRODUCT
Operating across the U.S. its Embraer 30-seat aircraft have leather side walls, seats with a 36-inch pitch, noise-cancelling features, LED lighting, Gogo texting services and SmartSky entertainment. Wilcox says: “We have taken a relatively mature unloved airframe and turned it into one everyone wants to fly. We took out the overhead bins and added tray tables and wood-effect finishes for a high-end bespoke flying experience. There is a huge market for this.”
IDENTIFY YOUR MARKET
He is targeting commuters who often do the same journey once or twice a week, and is using smaller airfields to overcome the hassles of big airports. “Ours is not a one-size-fits-all industry and yet commercial carriers all offer exactly the same thing. We believe there are a lot of opportunities.”
PLAN YOUR GROWTH
The airline has lofty ambitions for growth. It is adding one aircraft a month, aiming for 100 aircraft in four years, and hopes to operate electric or hybrid aircraft in time too.
FOCUS ON FEEDBACK
To elevate the inflight experience JSX offers a rotating wine selection, seasonal beers and top-end snacks. Wilcox says: “Every part of the inflight experience with JSX is better than flying commercially. We are adding value and bringing a human scale back to aviation and for that people are prepared to pay. Our repeat booking figures show this is a very ‘sticky product’. Feedback is great.”