For today’s sophisticated businessperson, accessible air travel is a must. What many don’t realize, however, is that an enticing alternative to private jet transfer exists in the form of smaller turboprop planes, like Tradewind Aviation’s Pilatus PC-12.

Since debuting in the airline market in 1991, the Swiss-made Pilatus PC-12 has gained a reputation for its reliability, performance, and versatility, combining the speed and air-pressurization of a King Air with the cabin space and short-field performance of a Grand Caravan. As travelers discover that the smaller aircraft is just as safe as larger planes (and often comes with a lower price tag), more and more are turning to turboprop charters as a part of their productive business strategy.

“The Pilatus PC-12 offers the comfort and convenience of a private jet for significantly less cost, making it a smart business tool for short- and medium-range trips,” says Tradewind Vice President and Co-Owner David Zipkin. He also adds that the turboprop is ideal for stage lengths of up to 350 miles, such as Teterboro to Boston, Westchester to Toronto, Teterboro to Syracuse, or Westchester to Pittsburgh.


For instance, travelers flying Tradewind’s charter option from Westchester Airport to Boston Logan International and back can expect to pay around $4,700 per day trip. Compare that to using commercial business class, where a similar journey from LaGuardia to Boston and back for eight people costs around $5,200—or to private jet travel—which can run upwards of $10,000 roundtrip.

While Zipkin says that customers are often surprised by the lower costs they experience when choosing charter, they tend to be equally amazed by the amount of time they can save compared to commercial airlines, especially on shorter trips.

Whereas jets are often subject to re-routing due to their higher airspeeds, he explains, turboprops are often able to fly more direct paths, resulting in the same or shorter travel times. Considering the ability to bypass TSA and arrive at the valet-ready tarmac just 10 minutes before a scheduled departure, customers can expect to shave off up to five hours per round trip.


Zipkin adds, “The PC-12 can land at smaller airfields often closer to the intended origin and destination, which can offer additional time savings.”

Keeping in mind that business doesn’t cease during travel, Pilatus PC-12s come equipped with plenty of privacy to conduct meetings in the air. Similar to its leisure flights, Tradewind’s business accommodations include comfortable air-conditioned cabins, leather seating, writing tables, and complimentary drinks and snacks, along with additional catering on request.

“Our clients who have flown the Pilatus on leisure trips have seen the efficiency first-hand, and many have started to apply the same benefits for their business trips,” says Zipkin, who expects Pilatus PC-12 business travel to continue its upward swing.

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