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How to pay for a private jet
Get financing to skip the lines and fly in style.
If you spend hundreds of hours in the air each year, buying a private jet could help you cut down on personal costs and time at the airport. But finding the financing for a new jet can be tough, and you’ll want to do plenty of research before you commit to a model.
Can I get a loan to buy a private jet?
It’s possible, but you’ll need to find a lender willing to let you borrow millions of dollars. Often, your best option is to reach out to a bank that’s familiar with your financial situation and ask if it’s willing to finance your purchase.
Another option is a secured personal loan. Backing your loan with personal assets can make you a more attractive candidate, giving you a higher chance of approval and potentially lower rates.
There are also lenders that specifically offer private jet financing or an aviation financing company. Both have loans specifically designed to cover the cost of a private jet and have services to help you through the process.
How much do private jets cost?
Private jets typically cost between $2 million to $100 million, though prices can sometimes dip below $1 million for used jets. Costs typically break down by aircraft size.
$2 million to $8 million
4 to 8 passengers
$9 million to $20 million
7 to 9 passengers
Super midsize jet
$16 million to $32 million
8 to 9 passengers
$27 million to $100 million
9 to 16 passengers
$2 million to $8 million
6 to 8 passengers
Other private jet costs
Just because you bought a jet doesn’t mean you’re finished paying for it. You’ll need to pay for annual operation costs, which can add up to as much as $4 million a year. These costs can include:
- Crew salaries. Expect to pay around $400 to $700 per person each day. Most private jet crew are contractors and get a daily salary. Domestic travel generally costs less than international travel.
- Aircraft insurance. How much you pay in insurance per year varies, depending on your plane’s make, model, age, how often you fly your plane and where it’s registered.
- Hangarage. You’ll pay anywhere between $100 and $15,000 per month to rent a hangar — a garage for your jet. Prices vary depending on where you are. And you may have to tack on extra money for hangar insurance.
- Taxes and registration fees. Depending on where you live, you might have to pay around 8% in sales or use tax (similar to a sales tax but for purchases from non-dealers) on top of registration fees. Check with your local government to learn about tax rates, registration fees and exemptions.
- Maintenance. Maintenance costs vary widely depending on the condition of your plane and wear and tear. Be prepared to shell out some cash — some parts can cost thousands of dollars.
You’ll also pay for fuel and landing fees each time you use your jet — costs that can be difficult to predict.
Private jet down payments
Like any other type of vehicle loan, lenders that provide private jet financing typically require a down payment of around 20%. The upside is that you’ll pay less in interest. The downside is a higher upfront cost. Be sure to factor this in when budgeting your payments.
How else can I pay for a private jet?
Private jets are expensive. Even for the 0.1%, it’s difficult to justify such a huge expense if you don’t fly more than 150 hours a year. Consider these other options if you don’t hop on an airplane regularly — or just don’t want to deal with financing through a third party:
- Leasing. Rather than buying your own jet, lease one from one to five years by paying a monthly fee. Leasing gives you many of the same benefits of ownership, plus the ability to walk away after a few years, when the value of the plane depreciates.
- Air charter. Rent a private jet for one-time flights. Charter flights are popular for group tours like sports teams, musicians or private travel companies.
- Jet cards. Jet card programs allow you to prepay for a certain amount of hours on a jet so that you can easily rent one at a moment’s notice. Jet cards typically hold a minimum of $50,000 to $100,000 — or around 25 hours of flying time.
- Fractional ownership or share programs. Companies like NetJets allow you to buy a share in an aircraft, allowing you a certain number of hours you can fly — kind of like renting. With a share program, you usually don’t need to commit to any particular aircraft, hire a crew or worry about maintenance.
- Membership plans. Similar to share programs, you can become a member of a private club like Jumpjet, which charges a membership fee that can cost thousands of dollars a month in exchange for access to private jets.
- In-house financing. Some retailers provide personal loans that allow buyers to pay for their private jet in installments. It’s a more streamlined process since you don’t have to go to a third party for financing, but rates might not be as competitive.
5 tips for buying a private jet
- Be sure it’s worth it. Planes are expensive and often not worth the price tag if you don’t fly at least 150 hours a year — or more for pricier planes.
- Pay attention to size. How many passengers will you typically need to carry? How far do you plan on traveling? Smaller planes have fewer seats and travel shorter distances before needing to refuel.
- Not an expert? Hire a consultant. Most people aren’t experts in planes and don’t know the best places to find one. Hiring a consultant to find a good deal and negotiate for you could be a better bet if you’re new to aviation.
- Find a lawyer. Aviation tax law is extremely complicated, as are FAA compliance rules. It could be worth hiring an attorney to help you navigate these rules and make sure you aren’t inadvertently breaking any laws.
- Consider an aircraft management company. Instead of buying fuel, hiring staff and other necessities yourself, an aircraft management company can do all of that for you for a fixed price.
Business jet financing
Looking for a private jet for your business? You’re not alone. Companies are the largest users of private jets. Financing a business jet is nearly the same as paying for a private jet for personal use. The main difference is you can also borrow from lenders that specifically offer private jet financing for businesses.
Your application requirements might be slightly different. Underwriters for business loans typically consider business rather than personal finances and might ask to see balance sheets, business plans and other proof of revenue.
It’s become increasingly common for businesses to rely on fractional ownership or membership plans rather than buying a private jet, however. It offers more flexibility and doesn’t come with the responsibility of overseeing maintenance or keeping your plane up to code.
Compare personal loans
The lenders below can’t get you millions of dollars in financing but if you need funding for a loan you can start your comparison here:
When you’re ready to finance a private jet, personal loans from banks, secured loans, private jet lenders and in-house financing are your top options. The rise in fractional ownership and jet cards, however, means that you can enjoy private air travel without having to commit to the whole menu of costs that come with owning a jet.
Interested in a private jet loan? Start with our guide to personal loans to begin comparing your options.
Frequently asked questions
How much will I pay annually to use my private jet?
After you’ve paid the expenses for your private jet, you can spend anywhere between $700,000 and $4 million per year flying and maintaining your jet. Costs depend on the size and type of jet, how often you fly, the size of the crew and how far you’re traveling — among other factors.
How much is a private helicopter?
Private helicopters can range from $250,000 to nearly $2 million — right around where private jets start.
How much is the cheapest private jet?
The cheapest new private jet is the Cirrus Vision Jet, which clocks in at $1.96 million. However, you can often find used private jets for less than $1 million if you do some research.
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