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Private Jet Prices

The perceived cost of private jet chartering and ownership is one of the factors which prohibit many business and organizations from even considering private air travel. Private jets have long been thought of as the domain for only the extremely wealthy and powerful, with nothing to offer for the middle-class business person. Actually, the reality is quite different. Private jet prices have been coming down in recent years as manufactures and charter companies are doing their best to reach a more modest clientele.

Of course, purchasing your own jet outright is the most expensive way to fly privately. Private jet prices for new planes can run from the reasonably affordable Citation Mustang VLJ at around 2 million, to the top-of-the-line Gulfstream G550 at 40 million. Base prices don't include customizations that can add hundreds of thousands more to the original price. New jets are indeed the domain of the wealthy but there are other options.

Private jet prices for used aircraft can be substantially lower than their brand new counterparts. The one thing to be careful of with used aircraft is the possible expense needed for repairs, or to bring them in line with current regulations. That aside, plenty of dealers have light jets and very light jets (VLJs) ranging anywhere from 1 million to 7 million; mid-sized business jets can be found in the 5 to 10 million range. As far as used heavy jets go, the prices climb accordingly though they are still less than new.

If full ownership is not for you, consider fractional ownership. Private jet prices for this type of plan are quite affordable for mid-sized businesses, because the expense is shared among several organizations that are part of the fractional ownership group. Typically, a fractional group will consist of four co-owners who then split the cost of the jet among them. Annual management fees as well as costs incurred during flight use will be added to the overall expense. The one catch to fractional ownership is that management and maintenance fees over the long haul could push the hourly cost of operation beyond the price of full ownership.

The option providing the lowest private jet prices is the chartering option. Charter operators base prices on an hourly rate which reflects time in the air, fuel usage, insurance costs, pilot fees, and other expenses necessary to operate the plane. Prices do vary according to different models of jet, usually in relation to individual operating costs. As a base comparison, one international charter company based in the U.K. lists prices for a trip to Paris beginning at 3,800 for a light jet, all the way up to 9,800 for a heavy let. Executive airliners and high-end luxury jets will have higher prices.

Two options for individuals travelling alone are jet card and shared-ride programs. Private jet prices for these programs can reflect substantial savings over commercial air travel without a long-term commitment. Buyers need to carefully review jet card programs to understand how much money is required up front, how time is deducted from a purchased block, and what restrictions are applied to the jet card's use.

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