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How to make your aircraft profitable when you are a private owner?

How to make your aircraft profitable when you are a private owner?

Published 05/10/2023

Private aircraft owners: how to make your aircraft profitable? Rent it out!


When you are a company director and you are based in a region, you do not necessarily have the best transport links. Whether by train, car or plane, travelling from one point to another, without passing through a major city, is complicated, or not impossible. The transport network in France is extremely centralised, both in terms of rail and air. Since the health crisis and the closure of many regional domestic routes, it has become even more true. 


This is why, in order to travel easily, without constraint, from point to point, without multiplying time-consuming connections, many company directors choose private aviation. Sometimes they even own their aircraft. Today in France, there are about 15,000 owners of private planes and jets


How much does it cost to own such an aircraft? Is it cost-effective? We will discuss these topics in this article.


avion privé

A private plane: how much does it cost? 


We have already written an article detailing the different costs to be taken into account when purchasing a private aircraft. So, if you want to estimate the price of different aircraft, depending on their type (propeller, jet...), size and capacity, we invite you to read it. Keep in mind that beyond the price of the aircraft, you will have a certain number of fixed costs (hangar rental, maintenance, ...) to take into account, as well as variable costs (fuel, insurance, ...) quite consequent. 


For an aircraft to be profitable for its owner, it is considered that it must at least be able to amortise its fixed costs. This means that a minimum number of flying hours must be achieved, because, as we have just said in the previous paragraph, even when it is not flying, an aircraft incurs expenses. In short, if the aircraft flies, it can be amortised, if it does not fly, it is a dead weight and a financial sinkhole.


Owning a private aircraft therefore implies having a significant income to support these various costs and this is why, if your travel needs are not regular, but simply occasional, we advise you to rent a private aircraft rather than buy one


How do you achieve the minimum number of hours for your aircraft to be profitable?


It is now considered that, on average, for an aircraft to be profitable, it must fly at least 300 hours a year. However, the figures show that today private aircraft in France fly an average of only 50 hours a year: 6 times less than necessary


So how do you get more of these light aircraft to fly? This is where OpenFly comes in. As a private aviation matchmaking portal, OpenFly allows aircraft owners to make their aircraft available for rent to others with travel needs. 


We won't go into the various benefits of private aviation, particularly for business leaders who live in areas where transportation is limited or degraded. What is interesting here is that OpenFly solves both mobility and isolation issues from which many SME managers suffer, while also allowing private aircraft owners to fly their aircraft and thus amortise their fixed costs. The private aircraft rental portal really plays the role of intermediary to create a win/win relationship, where all parties benefit.


OpenFly: the AirBnB of aviation 


Just as AirBnB offers property owners who rent out their property an additional income, OpenFly offers private aircraft owners an additional income. It is a way for these owners to make a return on their investment by ensuring that their aircraft does not remain grounded and is used by others. Thus, just as AirBnb is a portal that connects private property owners with travellers looking for accommodation, OpenFly puts aircraft owners and travellers wishing to rent them in direct contact via its application. 


Private aircraft listed on OpenFly


What types of aircraft are listed on OpenFly?


On this private aircraft rental portal, all types of aircraft can be registered. OpenFly's customers have diverse and varied travel needs, sometimes travelling alone, sometimes with colleagues, and over distances ranging from French region to French region to European-wide travel (in 2021, 20% of the 1,200 journeys made using aircraft listed on OpenFly concerned cities outside France). From propeller planes to private jets, all types of private aircraft have their place on OpenFly.


On average, the aircraft on the portal are 2 to 8 seaters, with a predominance of models from brands such as Daher Socata, Piper, Beechcraft or Cirrus. The aircraft most booked by OpenFly members are TBMs and Piper Meridian or Jetprop aircraft, which perfectly combine an affordable rental rate with comfort and speed in line with their use.


The different models of private aircraft


If you want to know more about the aircraft listed on OpenFly, we invite you to consult the specific page of the blog on this subject. 


If you are an owner and wish to rent your aircraft on OpenFly, we invite you to contact us directly at +33 2 52 59 59 59.