Choosing an aircraft can be a daunting process. There are many things to be considered, dozens of sites with information and comparisons of your favorite models, and so much more. Our hope is to provide you with a place to start so you don’t miss an important step along the way to fulfilling your dream of private aircraft ownership!
The first place to start in aircraft acquisition is determining your mission. This mission should encompass where you need to be, limitations of available equipment, and your own personal preferences. Here are a few things to consider:
- Locations: You need to consider where you are based and where you plan to base your aircraft.
- Limitations: Consider some limitations of your aircraft, like how many people need to fit or how much luggage space you need. Some equipment is recommended or required to fly in certain areas, so be sure to do research on that as well.
- Piloting: Think about how many pilots you would like to operate your aircraft. Are you comfortable with one pilot? Does your insurance require two? Would you prefer to pilot your plane on your own? Are you okay with an older cockpit system or do you prefer a newer one?
- Preferences: Think back to what you liked when you flew on private flights in the past. Think about the speed of the plane, ease of boarding, landing location, lavatory preferences, and cabin preferences. If you haven’t flown privately, we recommend chartering one or a few aircrafts to determine your preferences!
- Finances: Are you planning on financing your aircraft? Are you planning on chartering your aircraft? Do you want your own maintenance teams or dedicated crew?
Are you having a hard time convincing your spouse or your team that flying privately might be a great decision? Our team has developed a chart to determine just how much private aviation can save you on specific trips. You can download that chart in our Private Acquisitions eBook.
The variables to consider are your trip organization, trip origination, trip destination, price of commercial tickets per person, price of additional expenses, time elapsed door to door for commercial flight, number of passengers, average value of each passenger’s time, charter estimate (get a sample quote on OpenPoint.co), and time elapsed door to door for private flight. Once you’ve filled out the chart for your typical trips, you can look for patterns on which flights a private option would save you money and time.
As you can tell, there’s a lot to consider when devising an aviation plan. Though these factors are far from comprehensive, they are the areas where we have most frequently seen mistakes, quick upgrade decisions, and buyers’ remorse. We encourage you to take your mission and budget assessments and see where they meet to get a clear picture on if it makes sense to travel privately. If you’re ready to dive a little deeper, download our Aircraft Acquisitions eBook – everything you need to know when fulfilling your dream of private aircraft ownership.