If you love to travel but hate wasted time in airports and the lack of legroom in business class, this North Texas-based, on-demand jet charter service will have you booking a one-way ticket to cloud nine.
Vault Aviation charters private flights to anywhere in the world, in multiple types of jets that can fit up to 16 people. It also ditches the big price tag, because Vault haggles with several jet operators to find the best deal.
“A lot of people unfamiliar with the private jet industry only know the model where you pay a huge up-front fee,” says co-founder, president, and general counsel Paul Taskalos. “Our model is the complete opposite.”
Customers book a flight by calling Vault Aviation with some basic details about their trip, such as number of travelers, location, dates, and budget. Vault then calls up a handful of jet operators and starts negotiating a deal — and can have a plane in the sky in as quickly as two hours from when the contract is signed.
“We make the operators compete for the trip,” Taskalos says. “We look for free upgrades and the lowest prices. We’re expert negotiators.”
Customers pay per charter with no membership fees. Vault Jet Cards, which work similar to a debit card, allow customers to lock in fixed hourly rates on different aircrafts.
Vault Aviation has scored some big-name clients in just under a year and a half of being in business. Taskalos and co-founder/CEO Weston Hull say they have flown athletes ranging from football All-Pros to baseball Hall-of-Famers. Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph (a University of Notre Dame graduate, like Taskalos and Hull) has been a loyal customer and spokesperson.
Last year, Vault also got requests from presidential hopefuls Ben Carson, Ted Cruz, and Bernie Sanders.
Hull and Taskalos met in the eighth grade in their hometown of The Woodlands, and went on to attend college together at Notre Dame. After graduating, the pair went on to separate careers: Hull as a private jet sales executive and sports agent, Taskalos as a criminal defense attorney. In 2015, they founded Vault Aviation and chartered more than 250 flights during their first year in business.
Nervous about flying in anything smaller than a 737? Vault only uses operators who comply with strict ARGUS safety ratings. It is also a Wyvern registered broker, meaning Taskalos and Hull can audit all jet maintenance reports, pilot credentials, and more.