Knowing what you need before you purchase aircraft for your operation is essential if you want to make the right purchase, especially if you are looking into aircraft financing. However, if you’re a first-time buyer, it can be difficult to know exactly what you’ll need. Let’s list some of the most important factors that you should know before you decide to purchase an aircraft.
How Long are Your Average Business Trips?
The type of distances you’ll be using your jet for is something everyone should assess before they buy private jets. There are companies like Depart Right Aviation that can help you. If most your trips are within the eurozone, then there is no need for you to invest in a jet with a 6,000 km + range. Even if you want to make the occasional trip overseas, you can still reach the east coast of the United States without needing to refuel.
Some companies such as Paramount Business Jets provide customers with support from their own private jet sales brokers, which will help you go about finding the best jet relative to your needs. For example, if more than 10% of all your flights are longer than 6,000 km, your broker will more than likely try to find a model with a 9,000 km to 12,000 km range at the very least. This is especially important if you must regularly make trips outside the eurozone.
Who’s the Typical Passenger?
You also should take into consideration the type of passenger that will be boarding your jet. What will be the average size of your party? Will you be using it solely to escort partners and buyers, or will you be bringing other executives or sales reps with you? These are all things you must think about before you strike a deal with your private jet aircraft broker.
Size is also something that should be considered as well. Some cabins can feel minuscule depending on your size, so you should consider the size of the cabin as well if you want to accommodate passengers of all sizes and height. Private jets sales consultants will be able to advise you on this.
How Much Can I Expect to Save by Chartering?
While making your plane available for chartering is a good way to offset the cost of your jet, it will never be able to eliminate them. So, it’s essential that you have realistic expectations as to how much value you’ll be able to get back from the jet simply by making it available. When you begin chartering, you’re basically entering the commercial airlines business, a sector that is struggling to even turn a profit right now, so you should keep that into consideration as well.
Another issue with chartering is how cyclical it is. Some years might see high demand, while demand can slump the year after. And the depreciation and wear and tear caused by extensive use of the plane will also have to be factored in.
However, there are many cases where chartering makes perfect sense from a financial standpoint. For instance, if you use the plane for less than 150 hours a year on average, chartering it might be a good solution. There are tons of fees, such as insurance, management fees and calendar inspections for instance that remain unchanged whether you’re using the plane or not. Furthermore, a plane that is underused will often cost more in maintenance than a plane that is used regularly. In those cases, chartering your own plane is recommended.
Do the Benefits Outweigh the Cost?
The main difference between flying commercial and flying private is that with commercial flights, you’re paying for a seat. This comes with many implications. A first-class round trip from London to New York can easily cost up to £6,000.
That’s all fine and dandy if you’re regularly traveling alone, but if you have to pay for your staff as well, costs can easily add up. If you’re going to travel with a party of five or more, flying commercial begins to make less and less sense.
Not to mention all the extras that come with a private airplane. You’ll have access to much better cuisine and be much more comfortable than you would be on a commercial flight. You can also communicate freely with all members of your team during your flight, which is a huge plus from a logistical standpoint.
Private jets can also accommodate luggage and equipment that commercial carriers can’t. You also don’t have to worry about long lines and you will have full control over your flight schedule. No more worrying about missing flights or flights being cancelled without you knowing why. Smaller planes often have much more airports at their disposition as well, another major plus, especially for time-conscious executives.
Should I Buy new or Used?
This is another question that plagues many people who are purchase private jets for the first time. Both options have their advantages and inconveniences. Private jet aircraft sales are not always cut and dried, but most private jets sales consultants will agree that a new jet will usually be better than previous models when it comes to fuel consumption, comfort, speed and safety for instance. Old planes can cost much more in way of maintenance and tend to use more fuel, which is a major expense to account for when buying a new jet.
New aircrafts also have much more features that make them more versatile. For instance, new aircrafts feature things like heads-up guidance or other technologies like synthetic vision, which allow pilots to enjoy virtually the same level of visibility at night as they would during the day.
On the other hand, a used jet can be tempting for a variety of reasons. For one, jets don’t depreciate the same way other depreciable assets like cars do. While jets will lose some of their value over time, they have a much longer lifespan. As a matter of fact, jets can stay in working order for as long as 50 years. A 10-year-old jet will have suffered significant depreciation, but little to no deterioration.
The true age of a plane is calculated by its number of flight hours and landings or cycles as they are commonly referred to. The average jet plane can last for as long as 50,000 flight hours.
However, you also must take warranty into consideration as well. In the world of aircraft sales, with a new plane, you’ll enjoy a full warranty, something you usually won’t get with a used jet. You’ll also have more difficulty securing financing for a used jet then you would for a new one.
Aircraft replacements parts and repairs can be very expensive, and knowing that your aircraft is backed by a warranty gives you more peace of mind, as you won’t have to factor in possible repairs as part of your costs.
New aircrafts also require much more maintenance as well, for a variety of reasons. First, since they’re in pristine condition, maintenance will be minimal. In addition, newer models are usually improved and are more reliable, reducing the amount of time and resources that have to be expanded on maintenance.
Also, the less a plane has to be maintained, the more it can fly. Flight availability is very important if you’re running a tight operation, and having a plane that is down four weeks per year for maintenance could really slow your business down.
Buying a jet is a very important decision for you and your enterprise. Depending on your needs and budget, investing in a private plane could be a great way to save time and extend your client base. However, before you decide to buy a new jet, make that you keep these few considerations in mind to make sure that you make a wise and informed choice.
Founder Dinis Guarda
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