One of the leading innovators in the private aviation sector, and the originator of the jet card, Sentient Jet is forecasting revenues of $460m for 2022. Helping this growth is the trend towards more digital reservations, that the company is seeing as it rolls out more booking options for clients. SherpaReport talked to Andrew Collins, CEO of Sentient Jet about this growth and these recent trends.
Growth in Digital Bookings
For the whole of 2022 Sentient Jet is projecting revenue to reach $460 million, an 11.3% increase from 2021. And during this year they expect to fly 80,500 passengers in total.
They’ve also seen a huge increase in flights being booked using electronic platforms. The company expects that between 35% to 40% of all its flights will be booked digitally during 2022, compared with just 15% of flights prior to the start of the pandemic in 2020. Sentient Jet expects to see $200 million in mobile transactions in 2022 alone, which will make a total of $300 million in flights booked digitally across several years.
Sentient jet card holders can make reservations using the company website, the Sentient app and the new text-to-book functionality. The latter offers user-authenticated, automated, AI like interaction, for destination options, prices and booking flights in less than 60 seconds. This was created from a need that jet card owners voiced, who wished more straightforward reservation transactions. Sentient Jet then provided their auto text-to-book, allowing card owners access to Sentient Jet’s electronic service team where Sentient card owners can book travel to and from anywhere in the world from the messaging application on their smartphones.
Andrew Collins, CEO of Sentient Jet and Co-CEO of parent Flexjet told SherpaReport “Much has been associated with the pandemic, but one thing that has often not been discussed is how the pandemic has forced tech adaptation. This is, at least in the beginning, what motivated our text-to-book idea that became a reality. Not only did we want a variety advantage, meaning that the client who wanted to book a flight quickly could do it digitally, or speak to a reservations agent, but we wanted the consumer travel journey to be a choice: high tech or high touch. Some clients are more comfortable doing things digitally, some aren’t. We always want to provide high tech and high touch service levels to all our clients.” Then added “With our initial text-to-book app as a beginning, we plan to do upgrades in 2023 and beyond. We will upgrade for language and create more dimensions of digitized products. A segment of our consumer base like to do everything themselves. And we support that.”
These are all excellent growth stats, and another equally interesting Sentient trend observation was about BLeisure (a portmanteau word, meaning trips combining business and leisure). Sentient thinks BLeisure may replace typical business travel over the coming years.
“Thanks to consumers’ continued interest in the work from anywhere idea, and the new global remote workplace culture supporting flexible lifestyles, BLeisure travel is becoming more popular than ever. Sentient Jet has seen a 30-55% increase in length of stay in popular destinations since spring 2021, indicating that travelers are extending their trips to blend business travel with leisure travel and vice versa.” said Andrew Collins.
Bleisure is already well-known in the wellness and hospitality industries, as working from healthful places, with loved ones nearby, may be a tributary of the gushing four trillion-dollar global wellness industry, as many successful businesspeople understand that wellness plays a major part in their continuing health, thus in their longer-term ongoing success.
“Among business destinations such as Washington, D.C, Teterboro in New Jersey, and White Plains, in New York, as well as leisure destinations such as West Palm Beach, we’re seeing trip lengths increase by an average of 1 full day since pre-pandemic. This indicates that travelers are tacking on extra time and not rushing back to their office boardroom to take a meeting,” says Andrew Collins.
Further, according to the Sentient team, additional popular U.S. destinations for Bleisure include Naples, FL; Scottsdale, AZ; Denver, CO; Dallas, TX; Boston, MA; Nantucket; MA; Miami; FL and Chicago, IL.
“Finally, one of our major trends for 2022 that will maintain itself in 2023 are the longer haul trips, to Europe mainly. Even now, we have seen increases in daily flights, some Bleisure, some not, across the Atlantic, to popular destinations including Paris Airport-Le Bourget, Florence Airport, Peretola, Italy, and London Luton Airport, England. We do expect 2023 to be a banner year, allowing our jet clients to travel with greater ease than ever before.”
Andrew Collins also discussed his view on the trends he sees for 2023. “Similar to Bleisure,” he says, “is the trend of further digitization, as we consistently provide facilitation options along the Sentient consumer travel journey."
Sustainability is also a trend that Flexjet and Sentient, will grow exponentially in the coming years. As an example, Sentient has a 300% emission offset for each flight that is flown on a Sentient Jet card at no additional cost to the owner.
“I believe the day is not far away when customers will demand to know how their flights affect the environment and the extent of their own carbon footprint,” says Collins, who points out that Sentient Jet is working on an across-the-board calculation that will automatically render a digital or printed presentation of the miles a card owner has flown and how much they’ve offset emissions along the way.
Sentient also adds that the need for eVTOLs (electric vertical takeoff and landing vehicles) for short distance commuter flights will continue to grow and in addition the industry will innovate further in this space including the rise in sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).