Jetron blog

Types of jets and how to categorize them

Each class of jet caters to different travel needs and preferences, so that is something that you need to keep in mind if you’re planning on chartering or even buying a private jet.

October 26, 2023

While in the past air travel was considered a luxury not many could afford and would engage in on special occasions, nowadays it has become a common means of transport. People fly quite often, indulging in both long-haul flights and short trips to city getaways. However, flying private has kept its air of sophistication and some might even say, mystery.

Beyond the obvious benefits such as privacy and efficient time management, private jets afford a range of amenities ranging from cozy sleeping quarters and showers to full-on board rooms for conducting business. However, not every business jet is designed and configured in a similar fashion. It all comes down to the specific needs of the passengers. Each class of jet caters to different travel needs and preferences, so that is something that you need to keep in mind if you’re planning on chartering or even buying a private jet. Now let’s take a look at common types of jets you can select from.

Very Light Jets & Turboprops

We’ll start off with the Very Light Jet category. Commonly they’re also referred to as entry-level jets or personal jets and are geared towards short-haul flights. They are the perfect pragmatic aircrafts if you’re looking to fly point-to-point quickly and with up to six passengers. Their compact size allows them to take off from shorter runways and land at smaller airports. As far as amenities go, the passenger cabins are cozy and equipped with all the necessities for a comfortable journey. Some good examples of Very Light Jets include the Cessna Citation Mustang, Embraer Phenom 100 or the Pilatus PC12. If you’re in the market for a VLJ you should be prepared to pay somewhere in the vicinity of US$ 3 million.

Light Jets

Next up is the Light Jets category. As you might have guessed, they are a step up in size and range compared to their smaller brethren. Similar to Very Light Jets, Light Jets are very efficient aircrafts that can land in smaller airports with shorter airstrips and runways. These jets usually come with upgraded avionics. Light Jets also provide passengers with more room to stretch their legs and carry more baggage making them the ideal jet for short to medium-length flights either for business or leisure. If you’d like some examples of jets that fall in the Light Jet category, then the Embrear Phenom 300, Beechcraft Beechjet 400A, Pilatus PC-24  and the Nextant 400XT are the aircrafts you should be looking at. As far as price goes, Light Jets can set you back somewhere around US$4 up to US$9 million.

Midsize Jets

In the middle of the pack sits the Midsize Jet class. These hit the sweet spot between the efficiency of Light Jets and the comfort of larger jet classes.  They can take to the air and can approximately fly over a distance of 2300 nautical miles. Additionally, the size of the cabins has enough headroom for adults to stand, that’s why they’re also known as stand-up cabin jets. Another perk of the added size is that these jets have lavatory on board and can even be configured with divans for extra comfort. Depending on the configuration, these jets can seat up to nine passengers and are equipped with improved connectivity options such as Wi-Fi, making them ideal for business travelers looking to efficiently use their time onboard. Prominent examples of Midsize Jets include the Embraer Praetor 500, the Cessna Citation XLS+ or the Cessna Citation Latitude. As for the price, you’re looking at prices between US$10 to US$15 million, depending on the manufacturer, configuration and state of the jet.

Super Midsize Jets

What can you look forward to if you’re embarking on a trip in a Super Midsize Jet? Well compared to the Midsize, quoting Daft Punk, they are “Bigger, Faster, Stronger”. To sum it up you’ll have a bigger cabin, which can carry a conference table for business negotiations, faster cruising speeds to get you to your destination sooner and improved comfort. This class of jet can seat around twelve people depending on the configuration and some can even fit onboard showers. The Super Midsize Jet class also allows you to cover transatlantic distances without refueling, since they can traverse over 3000 nautical miles in one go. The jets in this category include icons such as the Bombardier Challenger 350 or Gulfstream 280. Where prices are concerned, Super Midsize Jets usually go for about US$20 million.

Long-range Jets

Continuing on the wave of jets capable of covering transatlantic distances, let’s look at the long-range jetscategory. These are considered to be almost at the peak of what business jet aviation has to offer. More often than not, they are decked out with the best amenities you can get aboard a jet, including luxurious interiors, onboard entertainment and top of the line materials. They can carry around fourteen passengers in relative comfort, reach cruising speeds of some 1,000 km/h and most can fly distances that are over 3,500 nautical miles. The Dassault 2000 LXS and Gulfstream G500 are some of the best jets in that category. You can expect to pay upwards of US$50 million for brand new long-range jets.

Ultra-long-range Jets

Last but not least, we have the Ultra-long-range jet category. These jets usually come with all the luxury and comfort you can possibly have onboard a private jet. As you can probably deduce from the name of the category, these jets are designed for traversing the globe and going long distances without refueling while offering ample cabin space. The lavish interiors can include showers, seats that can be converted into beds and the cabins are divided into sections focusing on different activities like work or entertainment. Depending on the size and configuration ultra-long-range jets can seat up to eighteen passengers and can fly over 6,000 nautical miles in one trip. However, these benefits and luxury come at a steep price, with the average ultra-long-range jet going for over US$65 million. Popular jets in this category include the Gulfstream G550 or the Bombardier Global Express XRS.  

Anything above ultra-long-range jets falls in the VVIP airliner, bizliner or business airliner. These jets can be viewed as palaces of the sky that offer every luxury imaginable – lavish seating, high class entertainment, sleeping quarters or full showers. To make it easier to comprehend imagine normal commercial airlinersconverted to private use. These are usually used by royals, celebrities, or heads of state. Prominent examples include the Airbus Corporate Jet (ACJ) or the Boeing Business Jet (BBJ).

So if you’re in the market for a new jet but you’re not sure where to start or which category of jet is best suited for your needs, you can use our Jetron Jet Selector to get started. You can also contact us directly and we’ll be happy to assist you on your jet purchasing journey.

Marian Jancarik - Jetron’s Managing Director.

Marian Jancarik

JETRON’s Managing director
Marian is more than 20 years in aviation. You can read about his career path here. In his free time, Marian loves to play golf, ski and spend some quality time with family and friends.

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