“It would never have been possible to visit four countries, experience the variety of cultures and do it without a worry if we hadn’t taken the private jet trip,” said a client of the Aman Private Jet Journey tailored by Remote Lands, a luxury Asia-travel operator which has partnered with Aman Resorts.
Aman Resorts and Remote Lands have held two such tours so far, in October 2015 and March 2016, both focussed on Asia’s most stunning and hard-to-access destinations.
The third, set to take flight from 9 to 26 October 2016, will accommodate 16 guests on two eight-seater Gulfstream G200 private jets. The travel itinerary will cover countries such as China, Bhutan, India and Sri Lanka, similar to its inaugural voyage last year.
Highlights will include a “Champagne lunch on the Great Wall [of China]; zipping through Beijing on motorcycle sidecars; being blessed by monks in Bhutan; yoga at a ghost town in Alwar, India; and seeing tigers at Ranthambore, a large national park situated in Rajasthan” as recalled by a tour member of the earlier October trip. He went on the exclusive journey with his wife and six of their friends.
Stays will all be at Aman Resorts’ properties such as Amankora Paro in Bhutan, Amanwella in Tangalle, Sri Lanka and Amandayan in Lijiang, China. The all-inclusive 18-day itinerary costs US$63,888 per person based on double occupancy.
For those who want to experience a privately guided safari across various African nations, andBeyond has got something up its sleeve. The luxury experiential travel company that owns more than 30 lodges in Africa has also embraced private jets into its service. The Embraer 145 and Pilatus PC-12, or similar, will be used to take a maximum of 12 guests on a 19-day adventure throughout east and southern Africa. Departures are in September and October 2017. And the price? A cool US$116,500 per person.
But the sky-high cost may be worth it as there is a significant opportunity for would-be explorers to be fully immersed in the conservation works on the ground.
Joss Kent, CEO of andBeyond, explained: “We will not only expose you to the best wildlife experiences in the world, but we’ll also introduce you to Africa’s sculptors, its politicians, its ground-breaking conservationists, its filmmakers and its enchanting people.
“We will also take you behind the scenes on our private reserves and immerse you in our all-important conservation and community development work. We will use intimate, exclusive private jets and helicopters, and couple them with our touring expertise to make this journey as direct and seamless as possible.”
A shorter private jet tour of 15 days will be priced at US$75,000 per person with departures in May and June next year, as well as in February and March 2018 with different itineraries.
The trend of going on a private group tour may not be new, with travel companies such as Abercrombie & Kent and hotel groups such as Four Seasons crossing the world in their own custom-designed aircraft. However, the number of travellers in those groups is usually about 50, which is hardly as intimate as going on a business jet.
Besides, excursionists can opt to tailor their own private-jet expedition with Remote Lands and andBeyond, chartering six-, eight- or 12-seater aircraft for adventures in Asia, Africa and beyond.