If you are scheduled for a commercial flight, there’s a good chance that your flight will be cancelled if the weather conditions are extreme, especially when it snows. It’s for the benefit of the passengers, crew, pilot and basically anyone on the ground in the flight’s path. Safety is always a priority. But what about private jets? When it snows, will a private jet be grounded like a commercial aircraft? Let’s explore this question.
There’s no doubt that the rules for private aircraft are different from that of commercial aircraft. When the weather is bad, the pilot of a private jet is just as motivated as any other pilot to ensure everyone is safe. However, one of the reasons why a private jet can still fly is because they can choose to use an airport that isn’t as affected by the snow. One of the primary benefits of using a private jet is having access to a greater number of airports. When you’re flying commercial, you don’t have that choice. There are several thousands smaller airports from which to charter a jet, but far less major airports for commercial aircraft.
It’s actually quite amazing how airports in the same region can have a different flight status when the weather is bad. This is because snowfall can significantly vary over a small region. Subsequently, a pilot can make the decision to use an airport that isn’t restricted at the time. Another reason why there’s a better chance of a private jet flying when it snows is because it doesn’t take as long to de-ice the aircraft and clear the snow.
When you take a commercial flight, the schedule is planned well in advance and there’s no changing it, with the exception of slight delays. When you’re taking a private jet, things are far more flexible. While there is a schedule, both the pilot and the customer can make the decision to change the time within a two hour window, either earlier or later. Sometimes that timeframe can be extended. This means the pilot can choose to fly when there is a break in the weather instead of having to immediately cancel the flight. Commercial flights don’t have this option and they are usually delayed for a short period of time, and then cancelled if the weather doesn’t improve quickly.
Although there is a better chance of a private jet being able to take off and reach its destination when it snows, that doesn’t happen all of the time. Sometimes the weather is just too severe. The good news is that even when a private jet is grounded, it can get in the air far quicker than a commercial aircraft.