Ski Season 2018: Private Jet Charters to Aspen, Telluride, and beyond.

Jessica | September 7, 2018

Pumpkin-spice everything has arrived – it must be Fall! Ski season is quickly approaching and it’s time to plan your holiday getaway. Just like traveling on commercial airlines, private jet travel peaks in the winter and aircraft availability can vanish by the time the holidays arrive.

There were around 5,295 private jet aircraft available for charter in 2016, according to the FAA – and by our estimates, over 60,000 charter and jet card fliers in the United States. Near Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s, there is a huge gap in the planes available to fly and the number of fliers traveling – so booking early is the key to making sure your holiday ski plans are seamless.

Hitting the slopes means high altitudes – these altitudes not only wear you out when you’re hopping onto the ski lift, but also make choosing the right aircraft for your trip difficult. High elevation means reduced aircraft performance – air is less dense at higher altitudes, reducing climb speeds and other performance variables. Combine this with a lot of passengers and luggage, and you reduce performance even further. To avoid any issues, let the aircraft operator know how much you plan to bring and inform them of any unusually heavy luggage.

Time it well. Due to mountainous terrain, there are also restrictions on the time of day you can land or take off – night arrivals and departures are restricted at many high-altitude airports like Aspen, so be sure to plan your flight times with plenty of room before sunset in case of air traffic delays.

High Altitude Airport Restrictions for a Phenom 300 Jet
  • Aspen, CO (ASE): No night arrivals or departures.
  • Eagle, CO (EGE): No night arrivals or departures.
  • Rifle, CO (RIL): Night arrivals may be allowed in some cases; night departures are allowed.
  • Telluride, CO (TEX): No night arrivals or departures.
  • Jackson Hole, WY (JAC): Night arrivals may be allowed in some cases; night departures are allowed.
  • Hailey, ID (SUN): No night arrivals or departures.
  • Lake Tahoe, CA (TVL): Night arrivals & departures may be allowed in some cases.

Be aware of unexpected costs. Traveling to these destinations means a high likelihood of snow & ice – at least we all hope for fresh powder every morning! While modern jets have deicing equipment onboard, this equipment can’t remove all the ice on an aircraft on the ground, so deicing fluid is required. Deicing fluid can cost up to five times more than jet fuel and your aircraft could require 50 to 500 gallons to deice, so the cost can add up very quickly! Operators may also need to hangar aircraft overnight due to the weather conditions. Airports in these destinations may also have very expensive landing fees and jet fuel, so ask your operator about any potential costs that might occur before departure.

Some slopes in Colorado are projecting open dates as early as the beginning of November. GrandView Aviation offers nonstop charters from Austin, Washington D.C./Baltimore, or New York City to Jackson Hole, Telluride, Aspen, and beyond. Their fleet of Phenom 300 light jets seat up to 8 passengers and it can fit ski tubes in the baggage compartment, making this the ideal aircraft for your holiday ski adventures. As we always say – the journey is almost as important as the destination, so make this ski season one to remember!

For more information on Grandview Aviation, visit: www.flyGV.com