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FAA Registered Business Jets Flew 4% Less In 2023

Summary The total flight times of FAA-registered private jets decreased by around 4% between 2022 and 2023, in line with previous estimations.
Environmental pressure, rising fuel costs, and the recovering commercial industry are contributing to the decline of private air travel in certain markets.
Demand for smaller business jets has largely sustained, but manufacturers of larger aircraft are seeing a notable drop in orders.
The gradual cooling in demand for private air travel has seen flight times of business jets registered with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) decrease by 4% between 2022 and 2023, according to data compiled by JetSpy.
Related Dassault Aviation Sees Private Jet Sales Falter As Falcon Deliveries Down 25% While demand for the Falcon is dwindling, the military fighter jet Rafale is seeing a boost.
Mounting pressures
As the private aviation sector faces headwinds from environmental pressure, skyrocketing fuel costs, and the rapidly recovering commercial industry, the number of business jet flights decreased during the first three quarters of 2021 before rebounding slightly between October and December. Overall, flight time was down 169,154 hours in 2023.
The contraction falls roughly in line with aircraft manufacturer Dassault’s 2023 delivery results. Just 26 Falcon airframes were delivered during the year, down from the initially projected 35, alongside a gradually shrinking backlog. Dassault is currently the fourth largest manufacturer, holding a market share of 8.7%.
Photo: bibiphoto | Shutterstock
US-based Gulfstream recorded similar drops in its delivery goals. The company reduced its forecast to around 135 in October, citing supply chain constraints. Gulfstream maintained its dominance over the ultra-long-range jet class, controlling a 67% share of the segment and a 17.1% overall market share in the US.
Despite the shrink, smaller business jets continued to thrive; Cessna’s light-class CitationJet swooped the top spot as the most active variant during 2023, recording 273,522 flights, tailed closely by the midsize Citation V and Citation Sovereign. The largest jet to make the top five was Bombardier’s Challenger 300, which seats eight to nine passengers, depending on configuration.
Related The European Airports With The Most Private Jet Flights The United Kingdom has the most private jet flights in Europe.
Regional variations
Outside of the US, similar dips have been reported. In the UK, business jet deliveries shrunk by around 20% during the first half of 2023, according to The Telegraph. However, mounting pressure from some European governments to limit private jet flights could see the industry shrink further across more sustainability-focused nations.
According to projections by Honeywell Aerospace, global demand is expected to remain consistent over the next decade. The manufacturer has continued to record steady sales and increased aircraft value, with 2% year-on-year growth for private jet travel projected over the next ten years. In a statement shared in October, Honeywell Aerospace president of the Americas region, Heath Patrick, noted the sustained demand from customers.
“Our industry is on the upswing. Operators are showing confidence with plans to expand their fleets at a faster rate than any time in the previous decade… There’s also a positive shift toward sustainability, as operators are keen to reduce carbon emissions. Additionally, new users in business aviation have increased demand by 500 aircraft and 6% more flights over the next 10 years.”
Photo: Alexandru Domide | Shutterstock
Several regional differences are also set to contribute to the market outlook; while North America is expected to make up to 64% of new jet deliveries over the next five years, Europe and Latin America are expected to shrink slightly, owing to some economic uncertainty and changes to sustainability policy.
Asia-Pacific and MEA are the largest new customers for private jets; according to Honeywell, the Middle East and Africa recorded the most significant growth in business aviation flights through 2023. Asia-Pacific is expected to make up to 11% of demand for new aircraft through 2028.
Related US Bizav Association Lobbies Ambassadors On Dublin’s Proposed Private Jet Ban The airport must remain within its current passenger cap of 32 million annually.
What are your thoughts on the decrease in private jet travel? Let us know in the comments.

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