While various other NFL teams have found themselves at the mercy of airlines that have either jacked up the prices or yanked service altogether, the Patriots have taken matters into their own hands by buying their own planes. With an “S”.
Via ESPN.com, the Patriots have purchased a pair of Boeing 767 wide-body jets, revising them to include first-class seating only and a distinctive paint job that features team colors and logos and five Lombardi trophies on the tail. (Hopefully they’ve left room for more.) The Patriots become the first NFL teams to own their own aircraft for traveling to and from games.
Since the planes will be used only 10 times per year for traveling to and from games (more if there are postseason games on the road, including the Super Bowl), it’s likely that the Patriots will recoup their investment by leasing the planes-with-an-s to corporate bigwigs and well-financed fanboys who would like to fly the same way their favorite football team does. Heck, the Patriots also could rent the planes-with-an-s during home weekends to other NFL teams that have substandard arrangements. (I’m only sort of joking about that.)
However it all works out, the Patriots likely wouldn’t be doing it if they didn’t have a plan for making it work well, and for making their money back. And then some.