Buyers Guides

May 12, 2022

First Time Jet Buyer’s Frequently-Asked Questions

What You Need to Know About Owning a Private Jet

Is your organization new to the world of business jets? You’re in good company. Industry experts expect the next ten years to see a rapid increase in new jet deliveries - and many anticipate just as many used private jets for sale finding new homes as corporate travel turns to the private aviation industry for increased productivity and safety on board.

If you’ve never owned a private jet, you either have a lot of questions, or you aren’t sure what to ask. We’ve gathered some of the most common first-time jet buyer questions right here - and encourage you to reach out to an International Aircraft Dealers Association Accredited Dealer or Broker, one of their trusted private aviation service providers, or your CPA for additional information specific to your situation.

Should I buy a new jet or a pre-owned jet for sale?
The simplest answer is “it depends.” If you opt to buy a new jet from the manufacturer, your lead time can be well more than a year. However, if you opt for a used private jet, you can take ownership more quickly. You also can expect a much more affordable purchase price. As with anything, there are benefits of both. Be sure you know how to weigh your options.

How much does a used private jet cost?
Depending on jet size, performance, and age, you can expect to pay anywhere from $500,000 to $35 million for a used jet. However, the purchase price is only the beginning of what it costs to own a business jet.

You also must consider the fixed and variable costs associated with ownership, including various required insurance policies, hangar fees, ramp and fuel fees, crew training, maintenance, and more.

Is it more cost-effective to buy a jet or a jet card?
If your business executives travel frequently, it may be more cost effective to own a private jet than to purchase a jet card. Jet cards also come with limitations and do not guarantee the availability of an aircraft at the time your execs need to travel.

Compare the cost of your company’s jet card to the cost of owning and operating a private jet or small fleet of jets. You may be surprised at which is the better investment.

What are cycles, and why are they important when considering which used private jet to buy?
Jet mileage isn’t measured on an odometer; it’s measured with the number of pressurization cycles an aircraft goes through. The more pressurization cycles, the shorter the jet’s remaining useful life. We recommend learning how to calculate a jet’s remaining lifespan before deciding how many cycles is too many.

Is a private jet a good investment?
Only you and your trusted financial experts can determine whether owning a private jet is a sound investment for your organization. To determine whether it is, you’ll need to consider concepts like net present value to measure business aviation’s value to your shareholders. Don’t forget that some older jets may need serious refurbishment. A cost-benefit analysis can help you determine whether it’s a smart purchase despite the need for upgrades.

What size business jet do I need?
The distance your executives need to fly and how many go on any given trip are two important factors to consider when deciding what size private jet is best for your business. A light jet may offer plenty of space and an adequate maximum flight distance for smaller groups on brief trips, whereas a large jet has more capacity for passengers and can fly longer transatlantic and transcontinental routes.

You also can expect larger business jets to offer more cabin amenities to your executives, such as more spacious and private lavatories, separate staterooms, galleys for gourmet meal preparation, and more. In general, the smaller the jet, the fewer the bells and whistles you can expect in the cabin. If your executives expect to travel at the height of luxury, a light jet may not be suitable.

Where can I read more about used private jet makes and models?
Click “Knowledge” on the homepage of to find guides to common and popular business jet models.

How do I purchase a private jet for sale?
Unlike a real estate agent, an aircraft dealer can only represent one side of the transaction, which means you need to work with someone you can trust.

We recommend partnering with the most ethical private jet dealers by choosing one accredited by the International Aircraft Dealers Association. These dealers vow to abide by a code of ethics and work in their clients’ best interests. You can find listings of private jets for sale from IADA Accredited Dealers at

What happens when I decide to buy a used private jet for sale?

The journey toward owning a private jet is a lengthy and complex one, which is why you need to work with an IADA Accredited Aircraft Dealer. It can take a long time to complete the acquisition process, which is multiple steps, including inspections, appraisals, and more. Review the full process to better understand what you can expect.