Charter your own private jet and skip the commercial travel hassles
By Sue Baldani
With all the chaos at the airports lately, you might find your enthusiasm to travel, whether for business or pleasure, waning. After all, you have to get to the airport hours before takeoff, wait in long lines, and then possibly be told that your flight has been delayed or canceled. It can be extremely frustrating.
Now, imagine showing up at an airport and being escorted immediately into a comfortable, luxurious private plane and taking off within minutes. Short Hills Aviation, located at Morristown Airport, makes this happen for travelers every day. While some of its clients are musicians on tour and actors flying out for a screen test in California, many others are just regular people who don’t want to deal with the stress and time constraints of flying commercially.
This was the case for Mario Dudzinski, managing member of Short Hills Aviation. “I was in the [United States] Air Force, and I was an air traffic controller. When I left the profession, I became a real estate developer, and as I grew my business, my travel needs became cumbersome. It was always two or three days out of the office when it could have been a one day trip if better air mobility was available.”
At one point, his company decided to charter an airplane for a year, and it was such a positive experience that, in 2000, the business purchased its own airplane. “Once we bought it and started flying it ourselves, we realized there was a great demand out there for air charter,” he says.
In 2004, Short Hills Aviation was founded. Its fleet consists of eight top-of-the-line Dassault Falcons, which have exceptional cabin comfort, advanced technology, and superior efficiency. Couples can choose a small jet for a short hop to one of the islands for a romantic getaway, while a group of Wall Street executives can opt for a mid-size plane in order to attend an important meeting in Boston. If family members and friends want to travel non-stop to their favorite European city while enjoying first-class service and amenities all the way, its largest plane, which can hold up to 14 people, is an excellent choice. Pets can also go along for the ride.
“We have one client who has a giant poodle,” says Mario. “He walks out to the airplane by himself, goes up to the steps, picks his seat, jumps up, and doesn’t move. The only thing he’s missing is a smoking pipe and reading glasses.”
Not only do clients get in the air faster than at a commercial airport, but they get to their destinations quicker as well. “Our jets fly faster and higher than most airlines, so if we took off from Morristown and you took off from Newark and both planes were going to the same place, we’re going to get there about 35 minutes before you.” Short Hills Aviation handles, on average, about a hundred flights a month.
Due to the type of clientele it serves, privacy is of utmost importance. “You can actually come into our facility, get on your plane and never be seen by the public,” he says. “We have two private gates that you must pass through to get to the tarmac area. Once the airplane taxis out, it’s not really visible from the roadways until it’s ready to take off.”
Short Hills Aviation also employs its own mechanics and every airplane has its own crew chief. “So, one guy is responsible for every nut and rivet in the airplane, plus he has a sub-assembly team under him.” Dassault Falcon also holds the unequivocal private jet safety record in the industry.
If someone already has his or her own plane, they can manage that airplane as well. “There are a myriad of regulations that must be complied with, and the average well-heeled individual owner probably doesn’t have the depth of knowledge nor the time available to manage an airplane correctly,” says Mario. “There’s a mountain of paperwork per flight as well as routine and recurring maintenance scenarios that can be very complicated, expensive and time consuming.”
The company is also now looking to establish a West Coast operation to expand the convenience and luxury of private charters even more. To find out more or to reserve your own private jet for your next trip, go to ShortHillsAviation.com.
Written for Chatham & Short Hills Lifestyle magazine in New Jersey.
One thought on “Fly in Style”
That’s wonderful. Imagine having a private jet to take you someplace special?