While private jet charters have long been associated with luxury travel for celebrities and high-net-worth individuals, 5-time Best FBO in Asia Pacific and operator of the first and only private jet terminal and facility in Thailand, MJets is on a mission to bring private air travel to a wider market.
The company’s client-focused approach brings customized solutions to fit the requirements of every passenger. An array of aircraft of different sizes is made available to suit varying travel plans and budgets – ensuring cost-efficiency and convenience while retaining the bespoke experience of flying private.
Appointed as their new Chief Executive Officer in July 2019, we spoke with CEO Natthapatr Sibunruang about their future plans to further spread their wings and expand their services and products across Asia and worldwide, as well as how the turbulent times has affected their operations.
Truly Classy: First off, allow us to congratulate you on the recent accomplishments of M-Jets. Last year, the company’s main was once again voted as the top FBO (Fixed-Base Operator) in all of Asia in the Aviation International News Global Survey, marking MJets’ 5th consecutive year holding the number one spot. This recognition comes along with other notable success stories of the brand in the recent years. How does the organization execute and maintain such high standards of service?
Natthapatr Sibunruang: Thank you! MJets has worked very hard over the past few years to build up a reputation of reliability and luxury comfort. Our FBO lounges are equipped with comfortable seating arrangements, meeting rooms, shower facilities and more as we believe that unwinding before a flight will make your travel experience more enjoyable. We’ve learned how to fine-tune our personalized service over the years and I believe that our guests and clients have come to enjoy passing through our facilities time after time. We have fantastic staffs that play a crucial role in our success story.
Truly Classy: Looking beyond all these achievements, we cannot overlook the challenges that the aviation industry is facing during this time of the pandemic. And what are the chances that it came right during your appointment as CEO. One year into taking up this role, what have been the key takeaways for you and what is your game plan in the months up ahead?
NS: It has been a roller coaster experience! Having said that, every crisis comes with a silver lining and in our case, we had the opportunity to re-look at our business from different angles, increasing our efficiency while maintaining our high safety and service standards. Looking at things on the positive side, once the pandemic recedes and passenger traffic picks up again, things can only go better!
Truly Classy: Your expertise goes beyond private jet operations, with a diverse and extensive experience in the airline industry. At such extraordinary times, what do you say are the most important pointers right now for aviation businesses in Asia?
NS: COVID-19 has taught us many lessons. At MJets, things were no different. I strongly believe that a positive can-do attitude, willingness & flexibility to succeed from all colleagues are a key to success. We have learned to be nimble and adaptable to any and every situation. We are more likely open to new business opportunities that we might have not been explored. Even if that meant we had to think differently.
Truly Classy: Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. Allow us to talk about the relationship of jet aviation with travel and tourism. Recent years saw the rise of “personalized travel” where people look for travel experiences that are tailor-made for them. We have seen this adopted by luxury tour providers, private villa accommodations, and of course, private jets. What services do MJets provide to create bespoke charter experiences?
NS: MJets is often referred to as an ultra-luxury experience. Our dedicated teams take care of the client’s every single detail from a personalized contact person on call 24/7, dedicated ‘over-and-beyond’ concierge services, catering and onboard service, seamless transfers and transits between countries and from airport to quarantine facilities & residences… no effort is spared for our clients.
Traveling to Thailand has been challenging during the last few months, we put all of our efforts to sought solutions to meet client requirements. Also, we are keeping an update on travel information and ready to assist our clients along the way when they start planning the journey.
At the same time, we notice that the market is changing and that more and more people want to travel again, yet are afraid of large crowds in airports and aircraft. MJets understands the limitation, hence we diversify products and services to match client’s needs while retaining our renowned personal touch. A great example of this is the guest we’ve transported recently from overseas cities to Phuket for dedicated villa quarantine.
Truly Classy: Flying via private jet has long been perceived by many as a privilege limited only to the ultra-elite. Because of this reputation, the facts about its cost-effectiveness are often overlooked. Can share some of the advantages of flying private in terms of value for money?
NS: Of course, the cost of flying private is different. However, when you leverage key resources, private jets are more accessible than people often think when the cost is well planned with capacity. A close group of people, or traveling with a party of family or friends, now rather than thinking of its luxury, we are extending from glamorous mode to another type of transport with the added advantage of flying when and where you want, bypassing busy airports, lengthy check-in and baggage retrieving delays. MJets guests enjoy unique dining experiences and full concierge services starting from your residence to your hotel room at your next destination. As we clean and disinfect our aircraft before and every flight, you are also guaranteed a safe travel experience – an aspect that is extremely important during pandemic times.
Truly Classy: We know that MJets is not limited to aircraft charters alone. Can you tell us of the other services that you offer?
NS: MJets takes care of all flying needs with 7 business lines. We support flight operations, VIP ground handling assistance, private terminal, aircraft maintenance & AOG services, manage aircraft on behalf of aircraft owners, aircraft consultancy sales and acquisition, charters aircraft for small and large groups, from VIP cabins to cargo flights to group travel flights. MJets also operates a fleet of air ambulance aircraft flying urgent medical missions in the region on daily basis. Our air ambulance service is well collaborated with all prestigious hospitals by linking doctors and patients throughout Thailand and surrounding countries, making the world seem smaller in a time of need.
Truly Classy: What are the advantages of MJets being headquartered in Thailand?
NS: I would think our Thai culture plays an important role here. Hospitality and attention to personal detail are what make us famous. Of course, beautiful nature, beaches and delicious Thai food make Thailand a great place to visit! Also, being based in central Southeast Asia allows for efficiency and capabilities to covering flights both short-haul and long-haul in the Asia Pacific.
Truly Classy: The company is set towards what you call a global expansion. What can we expect from MJets in the coming 2 or 3 years?
NS: COVID-19 has closed borders across the region since last year making us re-think our future plans. Yet we strongly believe that private jet usage is still in its infancy stage with lots of room for growth. Infrastructure in the region is sometimes not yet up to speed, and that is where MJets sees opportunities. Ideally, we’d want to see the MJets brand spreading its wings even further. That will start by expanding our current operations in Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar and other neighboring countries.
Truly Classy: MJets also boasts having the largest jet fleet in all of Thailand. To cap off our interview, would you happen to have a favorite among the aircraft?
NS: All our aircraft fulfill their own mission. Air ambulances are fast and lean, our Gulfstream GV is the summit of luxury and our Citation X is one of the fastest private jets in the world. Having said that, I’d like a ride in our CX any day….it is the sports car of the air!