If you’re considering renting a plane, you’re likely looking at a Cessna, the most produced aircraft in the world and a top choice for flight training.
When deciding whether or not to invest in a Cessna, you need to be aware of all of your options and their costs.
The variable costs depend on how much you use your plane, so if you were to rent your Cessna and stash it in a hangar like a piece of art, your variable costs would be zero. Assuming that you actually want to fly your plane though, here are the things you’ll be spending on to keep flying.
The more you fly, the more fuel you burn and the more fuel you need to buy. Average gas prices tend to hover around $5 per gallon (with prices only increasing). With a typical usage of 5.6 to 9 gallons of gas per hour, it can come out to anywhere between $28 and $54 spent on fuel for each hour of flight. While that can quickly add up, many rentals do come “wet” (but not all do, so don’t assume!), which means the price of gas is included, so you start with a full tank and any refueling is typically reimbursed at the local rate.
Many small airports do not charge a landing fee, but if you’re landing at a bigger airport with lots of traffic, there may be a charge. Relative to all of the other costs that come with the Cessna, this isn’t much of a difference maker, and is usually less than $100 per year.
The fixed costs do not depend on how much you fly the plane, and as we’ll see, just because they are called “fixed” doesn’t mean that there aren’t more affordable alternatives out there. For plane owners, fixed costs include renting hangar space and actually purchasing the Cessna, but for our rental purposes, there are three important fixed costs.
Renting a Cessna
This one is obvious. If you’re looking to rent a plane, you’re going to have to pay for it. The hourly price to wet rent varies by vendor but usually is up to $120 for a Cessna 150 or $159 for a Cessna 172 depending on the location and how new the plane is.
Insurance is often seen as a hassle, and for renters of the past, it was. Insurance companies made people subscribe to expensive annual insurance plans, even if they only needed a plane for just a few days.
Fortunately for those who rent, SkyWatch offers flexible aircraft renters insurance plans that only charge you for how much you actually fly, by the day, week, month, or year. This is perfect for anyone who isn’t flying daily or weekly and doesn’t want to be charged hundreds of dollars at once for all 12 months of an annual aircraft renters insurance plan. For example, daily aircraft renters insurance starts as low as $2.69 per day!
One final thing to be aware of before you fly is taxes. State and local governments can charge taxes and require annual license registrations which range in price from $50 to $528.
The Main Takeaways
If you were to rent a Cessna for a long time, say a month, it would cost you about $1,300 to maintain between all of the variable and fixed costs, though it is worth noting that that number is dependent on your flight hours, location, and model.
Maintaining a plane in quality condition is not cheap, but with the big savings that SkyWatch aircraft renters insurance provides, you save hundreds by just paying for what you use. Essentially, this makes insurance more of a variable cost as opposed to the fixed cost of paying every year, so it’s much more affordable.
So if you are looking for flexible aircraft renters insurance, make sure to check out SkyWatch and save as you fly!