Tag: access by airly

Access by Airly turns 1

Ever forgotten your child’s birthday?

Us neither, till now.

1st of June marked the first birthday of our Access by Airly program, the first of its kind in Australia.

Access by Airly was created by the founding team following constant feedback that customers wanted a pricing approach like the US and Europe: where you don’t have to pay for empty positioning.

We one upped that request by bringing in a level of simplicity and reliability not seen in the market locally.

Things started slowly, like all new business models.

The first 12 months

We launched 1 June, in the middle of a global pandemic with states closing and opening borders like a revolving door.

Regions were locked down making intrastate travel difficult, let alone interstate, great timing!

Our first card holder, Victoria, got the ball rolling making the most of weekends away at the snow.

Within six months we had 19 card holders and reached our first milestone of 100 card hours.

Fast forward to today, we’re proud to have 30 card holders. We’ve booked 200+ demand hours and our operating partner increased their fleet size from 3 to 6 Citation Mustangs to keep up with demand.

It’s been a battle, it’s been stressful, but it’s so rewarding to see how we impact the lives of our card holders.

Keeping their loved ones safe, getting them where they need to be on time, and transforming what used to be a day on the road into a 2 hour flight.

Big improvements are in the works – but for today (albeit a week late), cheers to you.

It only took one trip for George to cover his annual fee

Sign-up fees are common with private jet programs in the United States, but the concept is less common or proven in Australia. This article helps explain what it is, why we have it in place, and how it enables our value-driven occupied hourly rate.

Our Access by Airly program comes with an annual fee of $9,950 for two card holders.

For those who aren’t familiar with private, or perhaps have only chartered once or twice in the past, this can feel like quite a charge for no immediate product or service.

The reason the annual fee exists is to help smooth and flatten the fixed costs involved in operating, positioning, and making available six premium Cessna Citation Mustang jets for card holders. This enables us to deliver a consistent and low occupied hourly rate by reducing and removing unexpected operating costs caused by factors such as repositioning, holding, taxiing, and delays.

Additionally, the annual fee contributes to ensuring the highest quality service providers, operators, pilots, building an incredible team, and being able to update our platform on a regular basis.

So when real-world Access cardholder George was in the process of signing up, he also had some reservations about the annual fee. However, the fact that he was planning to fly 5-8 times a year made the cost savings compelling.

How soon did George make back his annual fee in savings?

Despite traveling mostly for business, George first utilised his Access by Airly card in taking his family to Byron Bay for a five-night holiday.

To charter, it would have cost him $20,500 return for a similar size jet.

Under Access by Airly, George paid $10,387 return, immediately saving him more than the annual fee he paid.

On average, our card holders make their annual fee back by the second or third trip – and that’s not including all the additional value the program provides outside of competitive flight pricing:

  • Six jets available to you on the east coast – no other provider can provide such coverage;
  • The most consumer-friendly booking, cancellation, and change terms;
  • No positioning fees or overnight fees; and,
  • A consistent and predictable experience
Airline On Time Performance

How often do the airlines arrive on time?

Each month the Department of Infrastructure (their actual title is much much longer) releases data on the aviation industry.

And one report we enjoy reading is the Domestic airline on time performance report.

The Department measure the departure, arrival and cancellation performance of the major airlines along all domestic routes. This gives us key insight as to why we keep receiving phone calls from potential card holders like George.

Pre covid, when Sydney – Melbourne was one of the busiest air routes in the world we witnessed under half of all flights actually arrive on time (scheduled arrival time + or – 15 minutes).

But we felt that’s unfair looking that far back, so we decided to take a look at the January 2022 performance between Melbourne and Sydney, the results didn’t disappoint.

So how did the airlines perform in January 2022?

Airline On Time Performance

Even in January 2022, when the airlines desperately wanted your custom, they could barely get you into Sydney on time, cancelling a quarter of flights.

It’s horrid performances like this that destroyed our card holder, George‘s, schedule.

He wanted to fly to Sydney from Melbourne in the morning and hit the ground running meeting as many partners, investors and clients as possible without the need to spend the night away.

And when he was one of the 25% on average having their flight cancelled, his precise schedule was thrown into chaos.

That’s why he signed up to Access by Airly.

Our promise is we’ll get you where you need to be, when you need to be there.

The only thing that can stop us is the weather, and even then we’ll have Plan B ready to implement.

Time is money, can you afford to be left behind by the airlines?

If you travel frequently, even a couple of times a year, George’s story will be very familiar.

A busy self-made entrepreneur with a young family, George needs to travel for his business and put faith in the airlines as flying by private jet felt a little out of reach.

Like all of us, George was up at 4AM to catch the first flight to Sydney.

Trading the good morning cuddles from his kids for the lonely drive to the airport.

Knowing he would miss school drop offs for queuing with random travellers piling into the same plane.

His plan of attack once on the ground in Sydney was precise and had little margin for error.

Only while enroute to be sent an SMS by his airline that the flight to Sydney was cancelled.

That’s it, no “here’s what we’ll do to fix things”, just a recommendation to call the offshore call centre.  

George’s day is now destroyed, meetings need to be pushed where possible and and then there’s the hassle and stress rebooking onto a later flight.

This is how the airlines treat their customers.  

The very lifeblood that keeps them in the air, are their largest inconvenience.

From that day, George vowed to explore private air travel as an option, and found Access by Airly.

A product that revolves around you, a company that adores its card holders.

George could book a four seat light jet, with as little as a few hours notice and know exactly what the cost was going to be via the fixed occupied hourly pricing.

He could now arrive into a private lounge 15 minutes prior to departure.  No security, no queues, no hassles.  Compared to the chaotic airport lounges, the Fixed Base Operator’s lounge was eerily quiet.

A safe, clean, and reliable jet paired with healthy gourmet catering meant George could hit the ground running, meet those prospects, and close more deals.

And the best part?  

George could now get those good morning cuddles, leave his home in Brighton at 7AM for a 7:20AM wheels up out of Moorabbin and arrive at his first meeting in Sydney’s CBD by 9:15AM.

It gets better.

By the end of his busy day, George’s jet will be ready to fly him home in time for dinner.

Imagine having a travel platform that works to your schedule, not someone else’s.

Paying by Amex and Crypto, all of George’s flights are 100% carbon offset as part of his hourly rate.

Time is money, can you afford to be left behind by the airlines?

How does ACCESS by Airly compare financially?

Warren Buffet once famously said “Price is what you pay – value is what you get.” 

Let’s apply this to Victoria’s travel options from Sydney to Thredbo, for herself and her two children, and compare ACCESS by Airly to both commercial and charter options from a value perspective.

ACCESS by Airly:

  • ACCESS by Airly: $9,950 annual fee (assume 10 flights per year): $995 amortised
  • Flight from Sydney Airport to Snowy Mountains (Cooma) Airport: $2,716 (whole aircraft)
  • Ground transfers from Rose Bay to Sydney Airport, and Cooma to Thredbo: $250
  • Total: $3,991 (including ACCESS annual fee)
  • Door to door trip time: 2 hours, 30 minutes

Via commercial air travel, Victoria could choose to fly to Canberra:

  • Flight from Sydney Airport to Canberra: Between $208 and $450 per person ($624 – $1,350) economy, or $760 business class ($2,280)
  • Ground transfers from Rose Bay to Sydney Airport and Canberra to Thredbo: $800 (3 hours)
  • Total: Between $1,800 (economy) – $3,080 (business)
  • Door to door trip time: 5 hours

And a charter flight estimate:

  • Sydney to Snowy Mountains (Cooma) Airport in a Cessna Mustang: $6,835
  • Ground transfers from Rose Bay to Sydney Airport, and Cooma to Thredbo: $350
  • Total: $7,185
  • Door to door trip time: 2 hours, 30 minutes

Overall, ACCESS by Airly’s value is compelling in terms of the time to price ratio, while the journey experience is without rival.

Making the unreachable, reachable

When planning a trip, do you find yourself sticking to major centres because they are the only locations reasonably serviced by the airlines?

Or if you want to explore the smaller regions, would you concede to driving hours on end each way?

This scenario was very real for our ACCESS by Airly card holder, Victoria.

Seeking to explore the alpine regions on weekends with her children, Victoria had to weigh up how to get there as the airlines provided very few options from Sydney.

Victoria could fly to Canberra spending at least two hours at the airport / in the air and then a further three hours driving to Thredbo.  Alternatively, Victoria had the option of ‘just’ driving for five hours to avoid the multi-modal hassle.

But a near miss driving in poor weather at night led Victoria to researching travel via private jet, thanks to ACCESS by Airly.

Flying private opens the door to new opportunities and destinations.

We flew Victoria and her daughter from Sydney to Cooma, and had a chauffeur ready when the jet arrived to safely drive them up to Thredbo. The whole trip took just over one and half hours from their front door to arriving at their alpine hotel.

For card holders like Victoria, we open the door to 100+ airports, around 70 more than the commercial airlines.

Let’s say you need to visit a client in Bendigo, and also have a property you wish to view in Newcastle.  Forget commercial, as at a minimum your planning will have you on the road and catching connecting flights over several days before you get back home.

With ACCESS by Airly, we connect those dots for you, at a palatable price point compared to charter.

The dark dots indicate airports serviced by the commercial airlines. ACCESS by Airly covers said dots as well as all of the gold dots as well.

And not only will we connect those dots, we’ll have you home in time for dinner.