For those who are frequent fliers, you know very well the hassle that goes along with booking and boarding an airplane. Long lines, numerous screenings, hidden fees, complicated reservation forms and bureaucratic check-in processes can make flying daunting. U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney’s former intelligence officer, Wade Eyerly, knew this all too well. Instead of sitting passively by, however, he is teaming up with his pilot brother to create his own airline, Surf Air.
For a flat fee of $1,000 per month, Surf Air members can take unlimited flights. While at this time the airline only has plans to serve four airports in California – Palo Alto, Monterey, Santa Barbara and Los Angeles – they are planning on expanding. Baja, Mexico, Vancouver and Montreal in Canada and China are some of the destinations on Eyerly’s radar. The mission of the company is to remove the hassle of commercial airlines, while still being less expensive than flying first class or on a private jet. For example, to book a flight the customer must only answer three questions: Where do you want to do? Which day do you want to go? Which flight do you want to get on?
“The model works only in a ‘commuting shed’ where people have to move back and forth from the city frequently,” says Eyerly. “It’s got to have a lot of frequent travelers with an income high enough to justify a thousand-dollar-a-month expense.”
Other perks to the service include being able to bring a guest for free when there is room, no security screening, a free car wash and no lines, as passengers will drive right up to the airport apron and board directly. The aircrafts are spacious eight-seater planes with comfortable leather seats designed by BMW. The only downside is there will be no in-flight service or entertainment.
Although Surf Air has had 1,800 interested applicants – including some celebrities – they are only taking 500 members.
Would you join a program like this if it serviced your city?