This article originally appeared in Elite Traveler July/August 2016.
While private aviation is still a niche market, the industry as well as its clients are becoming wise to the role technology can play in bespoke, luxury travel, says Victor’s Clive Jackson.
Let’s face it, more of us are now living in cities than at any time in history and experts predict seven out of 10 people will live in them by 2050. Such a relentless increase in population will require a more efficient use of resources and a need to further evolve contact between and within cities – both digitally and face-to-face. Successful cities keep people moving, sharing ideas and information that can ensure their further growth – the challenge of meeting an increasing demand for connectivity through on-demand travel, allied to technological innovation, is one that really excites me.
Regardless of socio-economic standing, time is the world’s most precious commodity. The boom in the private jet charter space is a clear indicator of this. While private aviation is still targeted to a niche market, the industry is starting to realize that technology can help provide more consumers with what they need, exactly when they need it. Technology enhances our understanding of cities and how people within them are moving around the world. Interestingly, Clive Jackson on travel demand technology in turn enriches the human experience. Global travel for business and leisure is part of our everyday 21st century lives and by flying, smarter people will be able to devote more time to the things that really matter to them.
Just as the world’s largest taxi company is actually a network of vehicles (Uber), and the world’s largest accommodation provider is a network of real estate partners (Airbnb), Victor is a network of jets and operators. Smart, technology-driven businesses operating in the ‘on demand’ economy have a vital role to play in helping people make the most of their lives within a congested environment where time delays happen regularly. Collaboration between them, too, will unlock amazing new services and technologies that accelerate the rise of connected cities and best serve their growing populations.
A recent Uber promotion hinted at how the on-demand economy will adapt and interlink in the future, delivering amazing end-to-end experiences for customers around the clock. That’s very exciting. Evolving all the different modes of transportation – ground and air – into mass, personalized travel networks relies on an effective use of assets and that’s where I feel we have a major role to play in the future.
Historically, private jet chartering has been led by brokers. Victor has set out to redefine the market. The smart technology built into our app, for example, enables on-demand, end-to-end booking and is therefore streamlining customer connections to people, places and cities the world over.
The team continues to seek out new ways to connect people and develop a revolutionary marketplace. By introducing our Art of Curated Travel series late last year we launched bespoke, highly unique ultra-luxe itineraries to connect our fliers with culturally rich destinations all over the planet and ensure total immersion – life being lived to the fullest. We’re in it for the long haul.
As the popular proverb says, it is about the journey, not the destination. Private aviation has long been a point A to point B transaction, but we’re about creating something more. Private jet travel will continue to grow through technology-driven democratization to meet the ever-expanding needs of travelers. Collaboration within the sharing economy can further accelerate this trend and help install the connections that we need between our future cities, businesses and populations. By combining hi-tech with hi-touch service, we want to help discerning travelers connect easily with different places, cultures, ideas, and make the most of every opportunity our 24-7 world has to offer. The journey continues.
Clive Jackson is the founder and CEO of global private jet charter marketplace Victor. flyvictor.com