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Textron Aviation BrandVoice: Protecting Productivity: How Private Aviation Can Take Your Business To New Heights

By Amber Ogden

Commercial air travel has plummeted due to the pandemic: As of November 2src2src, global flight activity was down about 46% compared to 2src19 levels, according to market researchers at Statista.

At the same time, industry experts are observing a more resilient recovery in the private aviation sector, with sources reporting business jet activity steadily hovering around 85% of its pre-crisis traffic and even occasionally exceeding last year’s volume.

For corporate leaders aiming to maintain business continuity in today’s challenging climate while also securing an edge for the post-pandemic era, these trends in the private aviation market could point to an appealing solution.

Here, we’ll explore why investing in a business jet could be a smart move for your business, helping leaders stay productive and safe throughout their journeys while benefiting the company’s bottom line.

MAXIMIZE YOUR TIME

On-the-move executives juggle a lot leading up to a business trip.

Maybe they run through a preflight mental checklist, calculating precisely how much time to allot without cutting it too close. Checked in? Unexpected delays accounted for? A bag that fits in the overhead space? What about squeezing in a meeting without disturbing other passengers?

Given the variety of hassles and delays possible with commercial air travel, some business travelers may be looking for more control, predictability and efficiency. With a company jet, passengers could fast-track their journey from the start, potentially accessing private terminals and skipping lines, avoiding luggage mishaps and long layovers, flying directly to areas that lack airport service and more. Ultimately, these efficiencies could help busy executives save significant time and energy, reserving space to accomplish actual work rather than nurse a travel-induced headache.

While flying private can help prevent wasting precious time at the airport, opportunities for efficiency exist inside the aircraft, too. Adequate space and proper working conditions aren’t necessarily a given when you fly. Fussy babies and cramped seating can make it tough to handle a client call or even think straight. Many business jets, however, are designed specifically for elevated comfort, space, privacy and noise control.

Textron Aviation’s Cessna Citation lineup, for example, offers seven jet models of various sizes—furnished with different cabin management systems, soundproofing features, seating configurations, wireless technologies and more. These possibilities mean you can select an aircraft that’s tailored to the work you need to accomplish in transit.

PRIORITIZE YOUR WELLNESS

Today, the long lines and crowds often associated with airline travel aren’t just inconveniences but also potential health risks.

Repeated contact with frequently touched airport surfaces or time spent around others in congested terminals or on packed planes increase possible exposure to Covid-19, reports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

As a result, some frequent travelers appear to be opting for lower-risk options. A recent article suggests that increasing interest in flying private could be attributable to the fact that some Americans consider it “a safer alternative to the often cramped commercial flights filled with strangers during the pandemic.”

As companies balance these legitimate health concerns with core business needs like meeting clients in person, private aviation could prove a safer—and less stressful—route to keeping business running smoothly while minimizing risk.

Certain jets feature advanced technologies that contribute to passenger health and safety. Every Cessna Citation aircraft, for example, provides an air filtration system to ensure a clean breathing environment on board. Some are equipped with “fresh air systems” that circulate clean air from outside the plane into the cabin, while others use advanced filtration systems to decontaminate and recirculate air during flight.  

In a private aircraft, a small number of passengers spread throughout a roomy interior supplies the personal space and environmental control that passengers need to stay socially distanced while flying—or to simply feel comfortable in a post-Covid-19 era. If you and your team have a long flight ahead, these calm and controlled surroundings are even more essential so that employees can stretch, relax and recharge in transit. 

BOOST YOUR BUSINESS

This kind of thoughtful investment in employee health and happiness pays off: Research repeatedly shows that when firms protect employee well-being, performance is better.

If regular travel is on your company’s schedule, ensuring that every journey is optimized for productivity, safety and general enjoyment could boost employee satisfaction and engagement, and in turn drive profits. 

But given the up-front expense—the Cessna Citation jets range from $5.5 million to $28 million—how exactly can investing in private aircraft pay off for the business down the road? Weighing the costs and benefits of jet ownership may seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. With an assortment of aircraft models available at a variety of price points and ownership levels—chartering to full or fractional ownership, for example—businesses have an array of affordable and customizable choices.

There’s also advice available. At Textron Aviation, prospective customers are encouraged to consult with the company’s financial experts to design a payment plan that complements specific budgets and business needs. According to a report from Deloitte, there may also be tax advantages to help companies benefit from their aircraft investment. 

From takeoff to touchdown, flying private could enhance the corporate travel experience all around, offering a reprieve from the hustle in an environment optimized for both work and rest. With elevated productivity and safety, a private jet could generate the return on investment your business needs to reach its desired destination.

“From corporations looking to reduce exposure to the virus while transporting their team members to special mission operators, such as air ambulance and flight inspection, private aviation allows these individuals to get back to business.”

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