“Let me be straight with you. What I'd rather have is an airplane. We just had a third kid. I don't like flying commercial. I like to take my family to Hawaii. When I go east, I'd like to have pilots I know. ”
Jet Deliveries Soaring, Says Manufacturers' Association
First-quarter figures from the General Aviation Manufacturers Association show no signs that the business aviation industry is yet feeling the impact of a sagging U.S. economy. The 297 jets delivered in the first quarter of 2008 represent a 41-percent increase over the 211 deliveries for the same period in 2007, according to the Washington, D.C.-based association. According to GAMA president Pete Bunce, manufacturers continue to see a trend toward deliveries outside the U.S. and some expect international sales soon to exceed 70 percent of their business. At press time, GAMA had not yet compiled second-quarter figures, but both Textron (Cessna and Bell) and General Dynamics (Gulfstream) reported strong numbers.