To Buy Or To Charter? Making The Right Decision


To buy or to charter? Making the right decision

Omar Hosari | - 10/02/2023
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Aviation, Executive Insight

To buy or to charter? Making the right decision – Wondering whether to buy or to charter? Making the right decision depends on a lot of variables. Private jets are expensive, but then again, so is chartering jets… In this blog, I’ll share some questions to ask yourself when considering whether to buy or to charter a jet.

How often will I use it? 

This may seem basic enough: I fly a lot; therefore, I should buy my own jet. But this is not necessarily the case. The maintenance cost of a jet can be staggering, and this is something often overlooked by those willing to invest in one. The value of jets also depreciates quite quickly, especially if you opt to lease it out. So, be warned, after the initial substantial financial layout, you will also face significant annual costs associated with hangars, MRO, and crew maintenance.

Do I fly with varying group sizes and for varying distances?

If the answer is yes, charter is a better option for you as this means you can choose the most suitable type of jet for each trip depending on the number of passengers, the terrain of the airport you’re flying to, and the distance being travelled. If you own an aircraft, your potential number of passengers will be limited, as will the distance you can fly without stopping.

Do I plan all my trips in advance or travel spontaneously?

If you travel spontaneously some or all the time, it may seem best to own a jet. However, this can in fact be more limiting as you may not always have access to your jet for a variety of reasons (maintenance, lack of parking availability, last minute changes, etc.). This is when chartering can often trump ownership. With so many charter companies operating globally right now, it has never been easier and quicker to charter a jet. That said, at times of the year when demand for charters increase, it can make it more difficult to secure the aircraft you want.

Why do I want to own a private jet?

Time to be honest. A private jet is a heavyweight status symbol and something many aspire to own one day, but merely being able to afford one is no reason to purchase one. If it makes financial sense to have your own and improves your efficiency and life quality, ownership is the right choice for you. If you are somewhere in between, perhaps consider fractional ownership and share purchasing and operating costs with multiple owners.

In conclusion, although full ownership will afford you total autonomy over an aircraft, it is an extremely expensive enterprise that should only be entered into if your life and workstyle demand it. On the other hand, air charter grants you the same amount of (if not more) luxury and convenience, without the crippling payout and constant maintenance.

I wish you luck in making the right decision.

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