I thought it might interest readers here to read of a flight I recently took on-board a Gulfstream G550 jet. I should stress this is far from common for me and was a gift from a client as a favour to me. For reasons of confidentially I have excluded some details.
I was collected from my hotel for the short drive to the private terminal at LAX and we boarded almost immediately. Security was from a technical point of view almost identical to a commercial airport but with considerably more politeness and of course no queuing.
Once aboard I was greeted by the flight crew and the ‘in flight assistant’ (her description). Departure was “at your convenience sir, let us know when you are ready to depart”. I stated I was ready to go.
As the pre flight checks were being conducted I was shown around the aircraft. A large boadroom table with seating for four, a number of large single seats, a shower, a bedroom with double bed, a desk and a four person sofa running down one side of the aircraft. At the front there was a kitchen and separate accommodation for the crew. The in-flight entertainment was via three TV’s which could show from a selection of around 500 movies and live TV. In addition there was a massive collection of music which could be played either via headphones or the aircraft speakers.
I asked for dinner at 8pm local time ( I had chosen the meal in advance). There was a choice of three wines and dessert was a lovely home made lemon tart (made by the co-pilots wife the day before !). I dined at the boadroom table which had been made up with fine china and crystal glass, there was an option to sit at three other seats as well but I found the large table much nicer as I could watch the largest TV at the same time.
After dinner the table was cleared and I was offered a brandy. I worked until 10pm and then informed the crew I was turning in for the night. There were fresh new pyjamas laid out for me and although I was concerned the bedroom at the back of the aircraft would be noisy as the engines were close by this was not the case. I slept like a log and was briefly woken as we descended into New York to refuel and pick up another passenger. I was asleep again shortly after take off and slept soundly before awaking the following morning. I showered, shaved and changed into a suit before breakfast which I shared talking with the other passenger (my client’s lawyer who had boarded in New York).
We landed on schedule in Europe and taxied straight to the private terminal, I was collected by a Mercedes S Class from the GHO and taken to a private immigration office for the formalities. We were on our way out of the airport around 10 minutes after the doors of the aircraft had opened.
As might be expected the experience has spoilt me for the future as not a single commercial operation can get close to the experience, for the first time I arrived refreshed and alert ready for a days work with not a hint of jetlag and no aches or pains.
For illustrative purposes ONLY there is a photo here
This is an identical layout but not the same aircraft.