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Winter storms, U.S. shutdown boost demand for private jets

February 06, 2019 / Allison Lampert, Tracy Rucinski

Harsh winter weather and the partial U.S. government shutdown boosted demand for private jets in January, according to three business aviation companies that recently reported an uptick last month in deep-pocketed travelers seeking alternatives to commercial flying. Business jets fly through regional airports which were less exposed than major hubs to weather-related delays and unpredictable security lines during a 35-day government shutdown that ended on Jan. 25.The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) said many employees, who went unpaid during the shutdown, did not report to work due to financial hardship. Congressional negotiators are working to avert another shutdown on Feb. 15. The combination of frigid temperatures and the TSA issues caused during the shutdown had a lot of people calling us in January,” said Patrick Gallagher, executive vice president, sales and marketing of NetJets, the world’s largest private jet company.