Commencing in 2008, travelers in the New York Metro area will have the option of taking a POGO air taxi to their destination.
For about the same price as a full fare ticket, you can book a flight on a POGO operated jet with no advanced notification. POGO is setting itself apart from other carriers and has a specific model for their service. Unlike other Air Taxis, which will sell individual seats (the "per seat on demand" model), POGO will sell the entire plane for the day. In other words, they are using the "Hertz model." The vision of POGO is for a businessperson to hire a plane for an entire day, visit several different locations, and still be able to return home in time for dinner, by bypassing all the delays inherent in major airports and instead going through the small, under-utilized regional airports.
There are from 700-800 regional airports in a 500-nautical-mile range around New York to which POGO can and will carry its passengers. No more delays caused by long lines, either for security checks to board the plane. Of course there are security checks, but since the planes are much smaller, the checks are much easier. As for on-time departure, once you show up, you are ready to go. So instead of taking a flight to a major airport three hours away from your destination, by taking a POGO air taxi chances are you'll be able to get to an airport not even 30 minutes away. Get to your meeting, then turn around and come back home on the same day.
Passengers are somewhat wary of using air taxis because they expect the price to be astronomical. But that's a fallacy. If you're a business traveler, you know that you don't always have the luxury of having two weeks advance notice of when you'll need to take a trip. More often than not you learn the day before. Therefore, you're unable to take advantage of any discount fares, and have to pay full price for your tickets. And a POGO ticket will cost you the same amount as a full price fare.
So...you save time...and the cost is about the same. What's not to like?
As you would expect from the name, POGO is representative of short hops. The former POGO President Cameron Burr explained: "The pogo stick represented what we wanted to do, short hops, lots of flights, fast turnarounds. [Also] The character Pogo was a very anti-establishment animal. He was a champion of the little guy and very against the status quo, and that's what we are we are a new way to travel, we are not an airline."
Because POGO will not take to the air until 2008, they have yet to announce which aircraft they'll be using for their service. There are many new Very Light Jets coming on the market, from the Eclipse 500 (which will be used by DayJet and Linear Air), the Cessna Citation Mustang, the Embraer Phenom, the Adam A700, even the HondaJet (although that isn't scheduled to roll out until 2010.)
Robert Crandall, the former CEO of American Airlines, is the founder of POGO. Crandall has long been an innovator – while at American he led the development of the SABRE reservation system, for example. He was also responsible for the industry's first frequent flyer program. As with any other endeavor, the remaining POGO team were chosen for their expertise in aviation, information technology, and finance. As with any startup venture, personnel is being added at all times, and there are some losses, for example Cameron Burr recently resigned to pursue other avenues.