Even as private jets become more readily available, prices for new private jets range from $3 million for a small seven-passenger Cirrus Vision to $660 million for an Air Force One. The purchase price is far from the only cost involved – you also have to factor in maintenance, fuel and employee wages. Find out everything you need to know about the cost of a private jet and how to pay before you go shopping.
How much does it cost to buy a private jet?
If you are considering buying a private jet, you can choose between new and used aircraft. A new jet gives you the latest technology at a lower price for the older amenities of an older jet.
There are different types of jets, from small six-seater low-range planes to larger airliners that can fly long distances. Some of the most commonly used jet options include:
Ultralight: The smallest private jet option, these can accommodate 4 to 7 guests and fly for up to about 3 hours. Prices start at $1.5 million and go up to $5.5 million depending on the type.
Light jets: These jets are slightly larger than ultralight jets, but still compact, can carry up to eight passengers, and can accommodate a bathroom. Light jets can cost anywhere from about $900,000 to nearly $6 million.
Midsize business jets: Midsize business jets have a capacity of approximately 5 hours each and are suitable for short to medium haul flights. Midsize jets also have more storage space, a larger cabin, and typically accommodate five to 10 passengers with a crew of two pilots and a flight attendant. Prices range from $9.9 million to $20 million.
Super-midsize jets: The space and range of super-midsize jets are increasing, and they can fly faster than smaller aircraft. Purchase prices for the planes ranged from $5.4 million to $26.7 million.
Heavy business jets: These aircraft are more spacious, can seat at least 10 passengers, and have features such as retractable tabletops and fully equipped galleys. Commercials start at around $27 million and can go as high as $39 million.
Ultra-long range heavy commercial jets: Jets like this have plenty of room to use as a flying hotel room. They feature large beds and plenty of room to stretch out for up to 17 passengers and a range of up to 6,500 miles. On average, you can expect to pay between $35 million and $62 million for a heavy-duty, ultra-long-range jet.
Prices may also vary depending on the amenities and customization you choose for your aircraft. Plan owners can choose from custom furniture, personal touches, and even different rooms.
New private jet
The price of a brand new private jet ranges from $3 million to $660 million. Prices depend on many factors, including size, manufacturer, range, customization, and the engines and avionics the jet offers.
Used private jet
Although used jets are cheaper, they still cost millions. By comparison, a used 2019 G600 with serial number 73008 sold for over $54 million on Gulfstream’s website in June 2022. Add in extras and customization, and prices can climb into the hundreds of millions of dollars.
How Much Does Private Jet Maintenance Cost?
The purchase price of a private jet is a fraction of the acquisition cost. The price of a private jet depends on its size, number of passengers and distance flown. Therefore, fuel is one of the highest costs of a private jet. Aircraft with larger fuel tanks for long flights use more fuel. For example, the Bombardier Global 7500 has a fuel capacity of over 51,000 pounds.
In addition to fuel, you need to consider costs such as staffing your aircraft, storage when not in use, and ongoing maintenance. Operating costs depend on the type and size of the crew and the type of service they provide. Some aircraft owners hire personal chefs to fly with them and serve meals onboard. Sites like Airplane Cost Calculator can help you calculate the cost based on the model you’re considering.
How much does it cost to charter a private jet?
While chartering a private jet is significantly more expensive than taking a scheduled flight, it is still significantly cheaper than buying your own aircraft. Private jet flights are billed by the hour. Prices vary by aircraft size, flight duration and number of people on board. Typical rates for chartering a private jet range from $1,200 to $12,000 per hour. An entire weekend of private jets can cost at least $50,000.
However, these prices are not all. Prices may vary greatly by season or route. According to Doug Gollan, founder of Private Jet Card Comparisons, a typical list of hourly rate providers doesn’t include retargeting fees. “You also have to think about the cost of flying the plane to pick you up and then returning to base after you get off the plane,” Gorman said.
Unless you fly at least 150 hours a year, a private jet may be a better option than buying — so you can avoid many of the maintenance costs that a private jet costs each year.
“With on-demand charter, you don’t incur costs for hangar fees, maintenance, crew wages, insurance, depreciation, interest, etc., not to mention the cost of locking capital in multi-million dollar assets,” said Justin Crabbe, CEO of a private jet company. Charter company Jettly. “With less than 100 hours of flying per year, the math clearly shows that chartering is more cost-effective than owning an aircraft outright.”
How much does it cost to reserve a seat on a private jet?
Private jets typically have around six seats for “light” flying, according to Crabbe. To determine the cost of a seat, you need to know the aircraft’s hourly rate, total flight time, and the number of seats on board.
For example, a 6-seat jet at $5,000 per hour (or $15,000 for a 3-hour flight) costs about $2,500 per seat.
While these costs may be high or low depending on the company, it shows you the difference between flying a private jet and a commercial flight. For bookers who prefer first or business class, flying in a private jet doesn’t seem to make much of a difference. But that price may seem high for a business flyer in economy class. It depends on what type of flyer you are.
Private Jet Card Member
Private Jet Card membership is a service that allows you to use and benefit from your provider’s aircraft. Different companies offer different levels and levels of membership. “Jet Card” or “Jet Membership” is a marketing term, so be aware of how pricing works.
The three price types are:
Dynamic Pricing: This is when the price fluctuates up and down depending on the situation. The cost of your trip depends on a variety of factors and prices may vary. “Prices need to be set for every trip – and prices will vary – how far in advance you call, where and when you’re going. Plus, prices change if you have to cancel and rebook,” Golan said.
Fixed Price: This is usually listed as an hourly rate, but some routes also have fixed options. Prices vary by aircraft type selected. Prices don’t change based on the time of year or other factors like dynamic pricing.
Fare cap: With this option, you pay no more than a certain amount per hour for your flight.
Check daily and segment lowest prices for the most accurate travel prices. For example, if the daily minimum is two hours, but your flight is shorter, you will still be charged for two hours. You’ll also want to check if there are surcharges for flying to certain regions.
The biggest advantage of having a Jet membership with a fixed or capped hourly rate is that you usually don’t have to pay an expensive relocation fee. Programs generally charge you for estimated flight time or actual flight time plus taxi time and any additional fees.
These memberships also give you guaranteed uptime. You don’t have to worry about not being able to provide a flight when you need it.
There are more than 60 options for Jet Cards and Memberships. Some of the main players are:
- Jet Edge
- Nicholas Air
- Sentient Jet
- Wheels Up
Jet membership seems like a huge perk for the almost regular flyer. You can fly as much as you want without the added expense of owning a jet. But if you only fly a few times a year, the upfront cost might not be worth it.
Private jet app
A private jet app is similar to a regular flight booking app, where you enter your departure city, destination and travel dates and are matched with private jet booking options.
In most cases, these apps are estimated prices, unless the jet company operates the app itself. It allows brokers to receive emails for future marketing. After entering your information, you’ll see a great offer before you pay and book your flight.
You may need to create a login, but you can use it to sign up for notifications and offers. Membership is not always required, but some companies allow you to get additional discounts.
Handling empty legs
An empty leg is when the plane leaves its destination without passengers. The flights are open to everyone because the jet is designed to fly with or without passengers. Crabbe says booking these planes can save you real money—sometimes as much as 75 percent of the cost of a traditional private charter.
Many private jet companies and apps allow you to search for empty legs and sign up for alerts that notify you when someone is at an airport near you.
This allows you to book a private jet for a fraction of the original cost, but with great flexibility. You may receive an empty flight notification 24-48 hours before your scheduled departure time, but some flights may become available within a few days of your search. You also have to find your way back. An empty leg is just that: a leg of the journey.
Can you afford a private jet?
Before buying or leasing a private jet, it is important to assess the factors that affect the full price of the aircraft. Think ahead of time about the type of travel you plan to do and how often you will do it. Short, infrequent trips may require more expensive planes than many people’s long-haul trips. Factors such as fuel, insurance, storage and maintenance are also considered when determining the total cost of a jet.
When considering whether you can afford a private jet, consider the following:
How many people will be flying: Is your plane for you and a friend, or are you planning a trip with your family? The number of people on the plane will determine the size of the plane you need to look for. The more people a plane needs to accommodate, the more expensive it will be compared to a small plane that can only accommodate a few people.
How often do you fly: Some planes are good for short trips and some are good for long trips. Take this into consideration when planning to use your aircraft. If you think you’ll be using it every few months, you’re probably flying a different type of plane than someone who flies every weekend.
Where do you want to fly: Are you on the east coast and arriving in the Bahamas? Are you in California looking to head to the Pacific Northwest? Short trips mean using planes with smaller fuel tanks. If you’re traveling abroad or on a journey with multiple stopovers, you should consider an aircraft with a higher fuel capacity.
If you are buying a new or used aircraft: A brand new aircraft may cost more than a used aircraft. However, the model and size of the aircraft also determine the cost. In general, older aircraft cost significantly less than new aircraft, but you should keep an eye out for additional maintenance, insurance or maintenance costs.
Number of employees on board: You also need to consider the cost of hiring pilots and flight attendants, whether you are buying or chartering a flight. According to Aviation Voice, you need to budget more than $215,000 per year for qualified aircrew. You can find crew members through the aircraft management company or the company that chartered the flight.
How to finance a private jet?
When you buy a private jet, you decide how to pay for it. Few people can fully afford a jet, so you may need to borrow money.
A personal loan allows you to borrow money from a bank or credit union to pay for your plane upfront and then repay the loan over time. However, getting a personal loan for a private jet is much more difficult than buying a new car. Even the cheapest private jet can cost millions, and only select lenders will approve loans for that much money.
If you’re going to a bank to apply for a private jet loan, make sure you have good credit and a good financial record. You can also consider taking out a secured personal loan that requires you to give up valuable assets like your home. If you can’t repay the loan, the lender can legally seize your assets.
Some lenders specialize in making loans for private jet financing, including JetLoan Capital, JetLease Capital and Global Jet Capital. The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association also offers an online loan financial calculator to help you estimate your monthly payments.
If you’re not ready to buy a private jet, consider leasing, which offers many of the same benefits as owning a private jet. Renting a private jet is similar to renting a new car, with options ranging from a few months to a few years. Most aircraft companies allow you to choose between several different types of leases:
Wet lease: The lessor pays for the aircraft itself and at least one crew member. Wet leases are a more expensive option due to the additional cost of paying for pilot or crew services.
Dry lease: The lessor can pay for the aircraft without paying for the crew, but must use its own crew. This is a cheaper option if the lessor already has pilots and crew available to hire.
Where can I buy a private jet?
If you decide to own an aircraft rather than charter one, and find the type of aircraft you want, you can browse the options in a few places:
While you can search for aircraft near you on many websites, you can also search extensively for private jets near you. Some sellers won’t list their planes on all sites, and you may be more fortunate to reach individual owners through a company or marketplace.
Companies like Gulfstream advertise used aircraft on their website if you have a specific model.
Buying a private jet is very expensive. While owning a private jet may be out of your price range, there are a number of ways to fly a private jet if you want. Consider chartering a private jet or joining a private jet service that lets you fly as a member several times a month or year.
If you decide to buy a private jet, you can obtain a personal loan from a reputable bank, or discuss your options with the lender of the specific aircraft. As with any loan, you should shop around and get quotes from multiple suppliers to ensure you’re getting the best deal.
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