Empty Leg Flights – What are They and How to Book?

When it comes to traveling in style and comfort, nothing beats the posh experience offered by a private jet. The ultimate in luxury travel, private jet charters offer a myriad of benefits that large commercial operators simply can’t match. 

From concierge service, to unbeatable support and safety, to efficiency and reliability, private jet travel allows discerning passengers to travel in comfort and luxury, care-free and ready to tackle what awaits at their destination.

However, this form of travel often comes with a price tag as extravagant as the experience itself. No matter your level of income, making savvy decisions with your money is always a wise way to approach travel budgets. A Private Jet Broker can help accommodate all your travel needs.

For those who like to stay a bit more budget-minded while traveling without sacrificing quality and comfort, an empty leg flight may just offer the best of both worlds. An empty leg flight offers the option to achieve an elegant flight on a private jet without blowing your entire vacation budget on flights alone.

So what exactly is an empty leg flight and how can you book one?

Read on to learn everything you need to know about this savvy method of luxury travel and to take advantage of on your next leisure or business trip. All that’s needed to get started is the right tools to search for available flights and a little flexibility with your travel dates.

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If you’re ready to find an Empty Leg Flight for your next trip, reach out today. Our team is standing by and eager to help you get the best deal on private jet charters across the US.

What is an Empty Leg Flight?

When someone books a one-way charter flight on a private jet, the cost for that jet to fly back to its home airport or on to its next client’s departure city is often included in the price. For example, if a private jet is chartered to fly from its home base of New York City to New Orleans, it may then either return home to New York City empty or fly to another city to pick up a new passenger. That budget-minded return or repositioning flight is known as an “empty leg” or “empty sector” flight.

Often, managers and owners will offer these empty leg flights for purchase at a deeply discounted rate rather than return with an empty plane. Empty leg flights usually have the time and dates set by the pilots, so those who are able to be a bit flexible with their travel times and dates can potentially benefit from big savings on private jet flights.

How Much do Empty Leg Flights Cost?

Private charter flight prices vary greatly depending on the size and type of aircraft, the number of passengers, the length of the flight, etc. So it stands to reason that the price of empty leg flights can be vastly different as well. However, often empty leg flights can cost up to 25 to 75 percent less than their independently chartered counterparts.

Some aircraft operators will list their empty leg flights at a standard set price. Many, however, are often willing to negotiate rather than leave flights unsold. Sometimes it’s possible to find empty leg flights for the same price or even less than premium seats on a standard commercial airline.  Another type of private flying is Wet Leasing or Dry Leasing.

What You Need to Know When Shopping for an Empty Leg Flight

Before you start shopping for private jet empty leg flights, it’s important to keep a few things in mind in order to assure a smooth journey.

  • Be flexible with your travel dates and times: Because empty leg flights revolve around the aircraft operator’s pre-booked flight schedule, you can’t always find a flight that is heading to your preferred destination on a specific date or time. However, if you are able to be a little flexible with the departure date, you’ll likely find something close to your preferred travel date.
  • If looking for a round trip flight, both legs will need to be booked separately: Empty leg flights are always one way. So when budgeting for your trip, remember to plan for a separate return flight either on another empty leg fare or on a commercial airline.  
  • Be willing to book last minute: Often private jet empty leg flights don’t get listed for sale until a few days or even hours before the departure date, so a willingness to book last-minute is often necessary. This also means that empty leg flights are a great option for a spontaneous getaway.
  • Practice your negotiation skills: While some empty leg flights are offered at set prices, many owners are willing to negotiate a fare that works for both parties. Having a good brokerage on your side will make this far easier. Due to their high volume and existing relationship with the owner and crew, a charter broker can often work out a better deal as opposed to trying to negotiate the trip yourself. For the best deals on empty leg flights, work with your broker, or be prepared to bring your negotiation skills to the table.
  • Be prepared for unscheduled changed: Because your flight is booked around other full price chartered flight tickets, last-minute changes may occur if there is a change in one of those itineraries. While this is a rare occurrence, it’s best to keep it in mind just in case.
  • Some routes may not be available: Not all routes are available for empty leg flights, so if you can’t find the exact route you’re looking for, check nearby or surrounding airports in order to maximize your results. Many cities have multiple airports you can add to your search or you can even check nearby cities. With the amount you’re saving on the flight itself, spending a little extra getting from a nearby city to your final destination may be well within your budget.

Where to Book an Empty Leg Flight

Bitlux specializes in helping our clients find and book private jet empty leg flights across the US and around the world. Since inception, we have built a reputation on exceptional service, unmatched safety, and reliable stress-free travel that gets our discerning passengers from point A to point B in style and comfort.

Bitlux offers preferential rates on a range of private jets and available private jet empty leg travel accommodations around the clock.  

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