Wednesday, April 27, 2005

New On-Demand Airline

What if you could marry high speed computers, sophisticated databases and the new Very Light Jet (VLJ) aircraft? I wrote about the future impact of just this on where we live in my book and saw its possibilities when I visited Eclipse Aviation’s Albuquerque headquarters last year. This week another player entered the field, DayJet of Delray Beach, FL. This follows Pogo, another start-up being launched by former AA CEO Robert Crandall and People Express founder Donald Burr.

DayJet CEO Ed Iacobucci, founder of the software company Citrix Systems, calls his new service a combination of a private jet charter and an airline. Customers would log onto the company’s website, entering the cities that they want to fly between. They would enter the dates that they want to fly and parameters like, “arrive there no later than _____ time; depart by __________ time; etc.”

DayJet would confirm your flight, matching it up with others going in similar directions and time of day. There will be business people on tight schedules and grandparents that are more flexible. All would fly and fly at a price that is only slightly more than full fair coach tickets today.

It will revolutionize how we travel by air, opening up the 10,000 airports in this country to more travel, even as the 150 that currently handle 98% of our air travel diminish in importance. No longer will busy travelers have to live near O’Hare, DFW or Newark. Think of how this will change where people will live?

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