Pelorus: Travel trends for the private jet industry


Seven top trends will shape the luxury travel industry for private jet owners and charter clients over the next five years, according to the latest report from bespoke travel specialist Pelorus.

Gen Alpha Design, High-Impact Conservation and Gamma Destinations were among the key trends identified by Pelorus in partnership with travel forecasting company Globetrender.

Gen Alpha Design: This trend is focused on the many new high net worth individuals (HNWI) coming into the private jet industry as charter clients or owners, who are millennials aged between 26 to 41 with changing needs. Pelorus and Globetrender looked at how these customers are going to influence routes and destinations for luxury travel.

At the launch of the report, Jenny Southan, editor, founder and CEO, Globetrender said: “Not only are millennials the most travelled generation, but a large proportion of them are now exploring the world with their children.” She added that travel will include educational trips for the children, known as generation Alpha. “Companies have a huge opportunity to recalibrate their offerings to better cater to their youthful demographic.”

Geordie Mackay-Lewis, co-founder and CEO, Pelorus added: “What we’ve seen over the last two or three years is an increase in educational travel and requests for more of an educational slant on their travel experiences.” He said requests for educational trips have increased 185% between 2021 and 2022.

The trend could see private jet charter venture into destinations such as the Peruvian jungle through Lima’s Jorge Chavez International Airport, or the pyramids in Egypt.

High-Impact Conservation: There will be an increasing focus on sustainability and protecting natural habitats and wildlife, according to the report.

“Over the next five years we anticipate growing demand for high-impact conservation from high net worth clients who really want to make a difference,” said Globetrender’s Southan. “For discerning high net worth travellers who are no longer impressed by caviar and gold tacks, luxury has taken on a new meaning. With scarcity as integral to its definition, luxury is becoming associated with exploring more remote wilderness locations or tracking their animals.”

The report said this could mean more private jet charter trips to the continent of Africa, where travellers can join conservation scientists and anti-poaching units. This could also see more sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and carbon offsetting used on charters.

Gamma Destinations: Perhaps one of the more surprising trends, HNWIs are going to seek out destinations that are less popular with tourists over the next five years. “For the worldly wealthy who have seen it all, I think there will be a growing appetite to witness previously unheard of and overlooked countries,” said Southan.

Places like Yemen and Saudi Arabia could be on the top of the list, according to the report. By 2030, Saudi Arabia plans to become a major international tourism destination, with an ambitious target of 100m inbound visitors per year. However, tourist visas only began to be issued in 2019.

Asked about travel to areas facing geo-political criticism, Southan said: “I think it will come down to how you as an individual feel about going to that destination, but [the Saudi government] are going to work very, very hard to change people’s minds.”

While there are plenty of airports in Saudi Arabia that private fliers can jet into, the infrastructure on the ground may not yet be as advanced as it needs to be to justify chartering a flight there.

Jimmy Carroll, co-founder and business development director, Pelorus added: “People want to go there due to the inquiries we’ve had this year, but in terms of projecting travel [people think] it is much further forward in terms of what it is, when it comes to the infrastructure and the city. It’s not ready yet, so we’re having to turn people away right now.”

Co-founder Mackay-Lewis said from his personal experience, the people living there want to see more tourism. “I think it’s very much about that. The rest is white noise,” he said.

Clean Tech Expeditions: Luxury travel modes will be chosen depending on the carbon emitted by the vehicle over the next five years and beyond. Pelorus said we should see more adoption of sustainable alternatives or changes, such as SAF or the increased uptake of eVTOLS rather than jets.

As well as looking at the upcoming trends, the report said that demand for luxury travel will continue to increase alongside the growing number of millionaires, particularly in Asia. Globetrender predicts 13% of Singaporeans are going to be millionaires by 2034, which will be a driver for private luxury travel in the future.

Pelorus seven top travel trends – at a glance

  • Gen Alpha Design: Greater focus on exploring world with children, more focus on educational trips
  • High-Impact Conservation: More consciousness on sustainability and protecting natural habitats, more trips to countries in Africa for anti-poaching excursions
  • Gamma Destinations: Move from over-crowded tourist hotspots to more unexplored areas, could see more diverse private jet routes and charters
  • Ocean Exploration: Increase in trips to coastal regions
  • Metaverse Previews: ‘Try before you buy’ through virtual reality
  • Clean Tech Expeditions: Increased demand for reduced emission/emission-free transport and SAF
  • Grand Tours: Extending luxury travel trips on land

The research was based on quantitative travel data as well as feedback from Pelorus’ clients and their travel preferences.

Read the full report here. 

Read the trends for luxury yacht travel here.