Millennials Changing the Face of Business Aviation

 - December 5, 2017, 12:21 PM
Embraer Executive Jets president and CEO Michael Amalfitano said that the business aviation industry need to address the impact of Millennials on the market. This generation has spawned "business aviation as a service." (Photo: Chad Trautvetter/AIN)

“Business aviation needs to address the growth of Millennials’ impact on the market,” Embraer Executive Jets president and CEO Michael Amalfitano said last week at the Corporate Jet Investor Miami conference. This generation, he noted, is spawning a new ecosystem—“business aviation as a service.”

While business aviation users span four generations, Amalfitano pointed out that jet owners are mostly Baby Boomers and Generation Xers. “However, we have seen a shift from ownership to access, since the 1960s,” he said, adding that this trend is accelerating as Millennials enter the workforce and thus become potential business aviation users.

According to Amalfitano, Millennials prefer to buy services rather than products. “They want experiences,” he said, "and will make price-driven decisions based on an experience desire.” This generation’s heavy use of digital technology means this is a requirement for any business-aviation-as-a-service offering, he stressed.

Across the generations, business aviation users are more informed than ever and “want more unique choices, more customization, more personalization and an overall higher level of service,” Amalfitano said. He noted that the industry is meeting this demand with help from charter broker apps such as Victor and Avinode; and from business-aviation-as-a-service providers that include Surf Air, JetSuite and Wheels Up.