SF Startup Aero Offers Seats on Private Jets at Business Class Price

This might be the only flight worth taking between now and 2020

Private jet without the sky-high prices? Yes please.

Want to get to Telluride … without a screaming kid kicking your seat the whole way there? Or do you want to set off on a Baja getaway … without going through the ritual mortification known as the general security line? 

New private-jet service Aero is betting that a whole lot of us will say “hell yeah” to those propositions, with new flights going direct from Oakland to Telluride and La Paz-Todos Santos on Mexico’s Pacific Coast.

Of course, this isn’t Logan Roy-style private: If you want to be humiliated by your erratic billionaire father, you’ll need to do it in the company of a dozen or so strangers. Here, your ticket gets you a spot on a 16-seat Bombardier CRJ-200. 

Also included: skipping all the mishigas at Oakland’s regular terminals. Show up 30 minutes before your flight, and you’re good. 

As industry journal Skift points out, private-jet services now face questions in the wider culture about “the morality and longevity of private aviation” — Greta Thunberg’s not crossing the ocean by private jet anytime soon. 

As Skift also points out: Regardless, demand for private-jet services is growing and evolving, with a new class of customers paying for access to “private” flights, versus shelling out a couple million for a plane of their own.  

Aero represents the latest variation on the theme. Unlike some other private-jet services, Aero doesn’t own its own planes. Prospective customers are hoping that distinction makes for an efficient, streamlined operation without sky-high prices. 

With booking now open for the Christmas-New Year’s period, we stuck in some dates — and priced out a round-trip ticket to Baja just north of $1,600. For comparison, the cheapest commercial flight from SFO to La Paz priced out at $1,400. In economy. And would take 14+ hours — each way

We’ll consider Aero a very happy early holiday present to all of us. 

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