A question that is often asked when a client is deciding between different air charter options for their flight is: does my air charter have a flatbed on-board?
While time-saving and flexibility are the top reasons why clients choose air charter aviation, on longer flights the potential of sleeping onboard – without being disturbed – is a major benefit. And aircraft manufacturers go to great lengths to maximize the space available for seating and sleeping, when developing new cabin design.
There is a range of seating and sleeping options on air charter jets, designed to make passengers as comfortable and relaxed as possible, from ergonomically-designed reclining seats on small air charter jets, to separate bedroom suites on VIP converted airliners.
Here’s a roundup of what you can expect when you need to sleep on-board a private air charter jet.
Small Air Charter Jets & Turboprop Aircraft
Small air charter jets are used for shorter journeys, typically up to a maximum of three hours – so sleeping onboard is usually less of a priority than it is for longer journeys.
But aircraft in this category can still provide a very comfortable flight indeed, with seats that recline – and in some cases, swivel and slide – adjustable headrests and armrests, and plenty of room to fully extend your legs.
With the exception of the Embraer Phenom 300 (which really bridges the gap between a small air charter and medium air charter jet), they do not provide fully horizontal flatbed options for sleeping.
The Embraer Phenom 100 and 300 aircraft are often regarded as providing the most comfortable and well-designed (by BMW) cabins and seating. The bigger Phenom 300 includes seats that convert into a flatbed position.
Other popular air charter aircraft in the small and VLJ (Very Light Jet) category include the 4-seater Cessna Citation Mustang. There are also slightly bigger aircraft regarded as small jets, seating 7 or 8 passengers, such as the Hawker 400XP; Embraer Phenom 300 and a range of Learjet and Citation variants.
Turboprop aircraft are also designed for efficiency on a short journey, but some variants of the Beechcraft King Air (the world’s most popular turboprop) have high spec luxurious VIP interiors to rival any small or medium jet. These can include side-facing divan seating, which can extend and recline into a fully horizontal bed.
Medium Air Charter Jets
For slight longer journeys of 4-5 hours, or where extra space is desired, medium jets can provide additional comfort in the cabin including more options for sleeping.
The most popular aircraft in this category – and indeed the most popular private air charter in the world, due to its versatility and cost-effectiveness – is the Citation XL/XLS/XLS+. This has six fully-reclining, extra-wide seats, which track into position for a very comfortable sleeping position – and some models also include a two-seat divan couch.
At a slightly higher cost per hour, and offering more space, Beechcraft’s medium-sized Hawker jets are notable for their cabin size and comfort in the mid-sized category. The Hawker 900 and 800XP include a three person divan for fully flat sleeping, along with other adjustable seats which recline and swivel 360 degrees.
Embraer again leads the way when it comes to cabin and seat design in the medium jet air charter category. Its Legacy 450 and Legacy 500 (expected to enter the charter market this year) seat between 7-10 passengers, and offer excellent space, range and comfort. Two of the central club seats fully berth into a flatbed position – the seats are swiveled into a back to back position, and locked together to convert into a fully-horizontal and very comfortable bed.
Large Body and Long Range Air Charter Jets
As they designed for longer journeys, long range air charter jets and ultra-long range (ULR) air charter jets offer a variety of horizontal sleeping options in spacious and comfortable cabins. And at this end of the market, customization makes it possible to use the cabin space in a number of ways.
Gulfstream’s flagship ULR jet, the G650 (and now with extended range the G650ER), offers the exceptional space, luxury and comfort you would expect from a $65 million aircraft.
The G650’s cabin can seat up to 14 passengers, but typically it is configured for eight, giving room for easy-to-berth divan seating which converts to a large, flat bed at one end of the cabin. The other seats convert electronically to full-flat berths and include swivel and tracking controls, and built-in footrests.
Dassault’s Falcon air charter jets also offer a supremely comfortable sleeping experience in the long range category. The Falcon 900EX seats 8 to 12 passengers, and includes a three person divan as one spacious sleeping space, and a further two seats can be reclined and combined to make a full-length bed.
Bombardier’s Global family of long range private air charter jets, the original Global Express and the newer Global 5000 and Global 6000, also offer similar divan to bed conversions. And in some aircraft, there is a private aft stateroom option – a separate compartment within the cabin, with its own en-suite bathroom, to maximize comfort and peaceful sleep.
Converted Private Air Charter Jets Airliners
When it comes to private air charter converted airliners, the sky’s the limit for interior design options – and that includes bathrooms.
Airbus and Boeing are the leading manufacturers of these supersized giants of the private air charter jets world, which are used by VVIPs, head of state and large corporations. The Boeing Business Jet (BBJ) is one of the most successful models, originally based on a 737 airliner frame. Airbus models include the ACJ318 and ACJ319.
Converted airliners are usually divided into different sections or rooms, and this includes a master bedroom suite, with full double bed and shower room. The other seating also usually offers fully reclining flatbed conversions and divans, so a group of 15-18 can sleep comfortably onboard a long flight.
For a personalized quote on any Air Charter for your next executive trip, or any other occasion,
contact us or call our 24/7 Flight Team at (888) 507-8582.