Barron's July 2022: For all the luxuries and conveniences private jets offer to travelers in the air, these aircraft spend most of their lives on the ground. Currently, there’s a shortage of places to park them. Hangar deficits have been a recognized pain point in the industry and are growing increasingly acute. Compounding the problem is the fact that private jet travel is up due to the pandemic, with orders for private jets increasing.
According to JetNet data, the U.S. business jet fleet increased by 34%, with a physical footprint increase of 27.5 million square feet, between 2010 and 2020. That growth has accelerated dramatically over the past couple of years as pandemic-related factors have driven corporate, individual, and government fliers from commercial to private aviation.
Proximity is also a key factor regarding hangar space, as jet owners and renters inherently want their aircraft nearby in case they have an urgent business meeting, doctor appointment, or family gathering they don’t want to miss.
Banyan Air Service, whose complex encompasses more than 1 million-square-feet of hangar and office space at Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport, has tried to stay ahead of the hangar shortage, expanding to the north side of the airport in 2020 with the addition of eight 22,500-square-foot hangars. Luxe amenities include an executive business center, conference rooms, a sleep bunk room, a private shower, and Tesla charging stations.
Even with the new hangar space, the company is reporting record demand, with a waiting list that is more than 20 aircraft long.
“We have had to increase staff just to keep up with the increased business and we are looking to get started on another hangar project to help with the lack of hangar space in South Florida,” says Jon Tonko, Banyan Air’s VP of FBO services. “Aircraft sales have been at all-time highs, with only 3% of aircraft worldwide for sale when the average is somewhere around 19%. We have seen a 30% increase in business year-over-year and we haven’t seen the demand this great in 42 years of business.”