MILLENNIALS AND BUSINESS AVIATION

According to the EBAA (European Business Aviation Association) and ThinkYoung, millennials want to save time and be flexible. They prefer fast and sustainable means of transport and are more socially aware than their previous generations.  From travelling to purchasing goods, they’re leading the disruption of life as we know it. In the meantime, Business Aviation (BizAv) generates more than 370,000 direct and indirect jobs within Europe, produces growth and connects remote regions. But is the industry ready for millennials? “As long as BizAv will live up to the next generation’s expectations, the answer is affirmative,” believes GlobeAir, the leading private jet operator in Europe.

THE LATEST NUMBERS

Last May 2018, the EBAA (European Business Aviation Association) and ThinkYoung have conducted a survey of over 2,000 young people in four of the largest business aviation countries (Germany, France, the United Kingdom). The study aimed to understand how millennials regard the impact of business aviation on future mobility trends and learn from their expectations about the industry. Providing fresh insights from within the next generation, the tagline #ExpandingHorizons brilliantly fits the scope of the survey.

ThinkYoung is a Brussels-founded Think Tank. More information on ThinkYoung.

MILLENNIALS AND BUSINESS AVIATION

Excluding the military, business aviation comprises all the unscheduled part of the aviation industry. This is something that millennials understand, with almost three-quarters of interviewees recognising that business aviation covers travelling for business on a private aircraft. On the other hand, the realisation comes with some healthy criticism as millennials believe that BizAv should work more on its image.

“We agree that business aviation needs to become more approachable and work on coming out as less of a niche enterprise than it now does. Millennials are giving us a great marketing lesson, ”says GlobeAir CEO Mr Bernhard Fragner.

bernhard fragner

Millennials are a generation of doers. They value efficiencies and meaningful projects; the way they rank the benefits of business aviation reflects it. Flexibility and cut travel times, as well as the ability to work better and faster,  are top-of-the-list. At the bottom, and contrary to what people typically have in mind when they think about business aviation, there’s prestige and status. The next generation, as the following ranking demonstrates, values the possibility to be where they need to be when they need it: for them, this is the first benefit of flying private. Does this reflect what business aviation is capable of? Another study from EBAA answers.

THE BENEFITS OF BUSINESS AVIATION ACCORDING TO MILLENNIALS

  1. Flexibility: go where you need, when you need (60%)
  2. Travel time saving (60%)
  3. Increased work productivity (43%)
  4. Privacy (37.3%)
  5. Safety (34.9%)
  6. Quality of service (33.5%)
  7. Multi-leg trips (multi destinations in a day) (32.9)
  8. Prestige/status (32%)
  9. Opportunity to build the business (31.7%)
  10. Business value (cost-benefit) (28.3%)
  11. Technological advancement setting pioneering trends for commercial aviation (26%)

Source: “How Millennials See the Future of Business Aviation. A Focus on Sustainable Personal Air Transport (EBAA and ThinkYoung, 2018).”

THE IMPACT OF BIZAV ON SOCIETY

Are millennials’ expectations on business aviation backed up by facts? According to a March report* by the EBAA (The European Business Aviation Association), the answer is affirmative. Economic growth, business efficiency, and increased connectivity are three of the most significant BizAv benefits. So, how does the industry contributes to creating growth and connect the world?

BIZAV CREATES OPPORTUNITIES

Business aviation is the driver of many direct and indirect jobs. Aircraft operations, the handling sector and tourism are the beneficiaries. As well as this, megatrends such as digitisation are urging businesses to innovate and open up new job perspectives. The hire of resources in the IT, software developing and digital marketing help private jet companies become competitive. Moreover, secure online payment processes and multiple points of contacts provide a seamless customer experience. A recent article which appeared in the April 2018 issue of Business Airport International proves it. The average age of private jet travellers is lowering, and as a consequence, business aviation companies should be reachable at any point in time; and available on the platforms that the customers prefer. GlobeAir customer care, for example, is available 24/7 and on multiple channels: on the phone, web chat, email, Whatsapp, Facebook, Linkedin and Instagram.

“It’s not uncommon for GlobeAir to receive booking enquiries on Instagram,” says pilot Tim Page, who also manages social media on behalf of the company.

Millennials seek meaningful job opportunities. For business aviation to capture the interest of the next generation, it needs to address what’s really important for them. With around 2 hours of travel time saved on each trip, 150% increase in productivity and the engagement in sustainable initiatives like the carbon offset programme, business aviation seem to speak directly to the millennials generation.

BIZAV CONNECTS

Business efficiency is the perk of business aviation. The industry provides benefits to employees, employers and companies by reducing travelling times and allowing for same-day multiple trips. The economy benefits from point-to-point connections between locations which commercial airlines can’t connect, and thus generating growth. Business aviation companies, moreover, recreate similar relationships internally. Austrian private jet operator, GlobeAir, for example, uses corporate communication tools to connect office employees and aircraft operators. Communications become immediate, and the information flows so rapidly that a pilot can be taking a photo of fabulous St. Tropez at one moment with the digital marketing department publishing it on social media right afterwards.

*Report produced by Booz Allen Hamilton together with Deutsches Zentrum für Luft-und Raumfahrt (DLR).


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