The adage “Time is money” has never been truer for businessmen, especially for sports owners whose goal becomes to not lose a single precious moment of their lives. And that motto can be successfully carried out with private jets. Gone are the days of standing in line and stripping down to bare threads to undergo TSA scrutiny. Not only do personal jets save time, but they're also affordable and lavish - particularly if you make the salary of a sports-team owner.
But, as wepushtin.com suggests, operating costs, purchase price, and engine life should be considered when investing in a jet. Also of importance are the distance for regular traveling, number of companions accompanying the excursion, the speed, and the comfort of the jet.
Contrary to the common misconception, luxury, although it can be one of the influencing factors, is not the sole reason for flying in private jets. Whereas commercial planes can land only in certain, limited number of airports, private jets can land on the smaller runways and thus reach many more locations. For instance, according to magazine.co.uk, there are 5,000 airports available for private jets, as opposed to only 500 for commercial airplanes in Europe. Whereas normally you would require connecting flights and multiple hours for traveling to neighboring regions, with a private jet, you can travel to several adjoining areas within just a few hours, enabling you to fully utilize that valuable time of yours.
With all this in mind, let's look at 15 private jets every sports owner needs to buy:
15 Embraer Phenom 100E
The Embraer Phenom 100E falls under the “very light jet” (VLJ) category. VLJs are a must-have for various reasons. To begin with, according to AOPA.org, the variable cost per hour to operate is low—in the $1,500-2000 range—for VLJs in general, and $1,151 for the Phenom 100E. Equipped with two Pratt & Whitney Canada engines, it has a top speed of nearly 450 mph and a range of 1,335 miles. It can carry seven passengers and a crew and costs $4 million. The interior of the Phenom 100E is designed by some of the best designers in the world—BMW Designworks USA. The new cabinet is attractive, vibrant and varied; available are 11 choices of color schemes. One key reason to have this jet is the availability of an optional bathroom. While taken for granted on the ground, a place to attend nature’s call in the air is very satisfying.
14 Cessna Citation Mustang
The Mustang is one of the many successful products of Cessna Citation. In its standard condition, the VLJ has four seas and a bathroom. With two Turbofan, Pratt & Whitney Canada engines, it can reach a top speed of 480 mph. With a capacity to run 1,343 miles non-stop, it has a slightly larger range than Phenom 100E. You must have this if you travel frequently in small groups to relatively short distances. Considering the smaller cabin size, it naturally costs less—$3.35 million—than the Phenom 100E. The variable cost per hour is also reduced significantly to $1,015. Compared to the hourly variable cost of other VLJs, this is a bargain. The only downside of this is a reduced take-off weight, which means no bathroom mid-flight. The upside is that Cessna has been long in the industry to know what it's making; it's sold over 470 Mustangs.
13 Honda Aircraft HA-420 HondaJet
HA-420 is unique, upbeat, and new. To give you a brief history, Honda had planned on flying since the '80s, and after years of dedication, it finally received the FAA certification in 2015. Despite being new to the game, it's already built around 60 units, with allegedly 40 pending orders. Considered a VLJ, it has its own selling points. Compared to Embraer Phenom 100E, HA-420 is half a million dollars pricier. The variable cost per hour is comparable to the Phenom 100E; the takeoff weight, although a little less compared to Phenom 100E, is also more or less the same. According to a review by caranddriver.com, it has 6 seats in total—which allow for side-to-side adjustment—and a lavatory. This is an ideal VLJ for traveling luxuriously with five to six people.
12 Cessna Citation Jet 1
Here's another Cessna Citation. Cessna Citation was the first company to foresee the growing need for private jets nearly 50 years ago. And the pioneer hunch was right. Introduced in 1992, the CJ1 is a successor to Citation I. While one of the oldest jets out there, it's still been in production since 1991. At almost eleven by almost five feet in length and width, respectively, this six-seater (including the pilot seat) jet is capable of cruising up to 440 mph at full throttle. It can fly non-stop up to 1,250 nautical miles (1 nautical mile = 1.15 miles). This is one of the most economical options for anyone looking to fly short distances on a light jet. As of 2015, the price of this was $4.5 million.
11 Nextant 400XTi
Nextant 400 XTi is another one to own in the small-jet category. 400 XTis are essentially restored defunct Beechjets. Nextant completely revamps the Beechjet with a new interior style, light, and seats, in addition to putting in a new engine. By the time it's completely refurbished, it can carry up to six to seven passengers and fly at a top speed of 529 mph with a total capacity of 2,303 miles non-stop. The price tag of $5.15 million per barrons.com is financially viable. The best part of the jet is the attractive interior, which includes a couch. If you ever start feeling tired during the ride, you'll have an ample amount to stretch and lay on. According to AOPA.org, the variable cost per hour to operate is just around $1,623.
10 Cessna Citation Jet 2
The Citation Jet 2, or CJ2, came out eight years after the CJ1. It's still economical yet is more comfortable and spacious than the CJ1. Let’s look at the details more carefully. With this model, there was an increase of 33 inches in the length of the cabin and 35 in the width compared to the CJ1—it also had a seat added. The range increased to 1,400 nautical miles (1611 miles) from 1,250 nautical miles, and the top speed saw an increase of 40 mph to 480 mph. However, the jet itself costs $1 million more than the CJ1, making it worth a total of $7 million. More importantly, it has three baggage compartments, totaling 65 cubic feet of space, which the 400XTi was behind on by 40 cubic feet. So, you should have this for trips requiring a large luggage overhaul.
9 Cessna Citation Jet 4
The CJ4 came out in 2009. While it's still classified as a small jet, it can accommodate up to eight people. Compared to its siblings, it has a cruise speed of 510 mph and can go all the way up to 2,303 miles without needing fuel again—that’s going from New York City to Houston, which is a lot for a “small jet.” Additionally, the baggage space is 77 cubic feet, around 12 more cubic feet than the CJ2. In the cabin, you'll also find a luxurious refreshment and a restroom—if you have too many drinks, your bladder won’t keep torturing you. The seats are adjustable and can accommodate your needs; the CJ4 also has improved user-interface and entertainment technology. Equipped with two FJ44-3A engines, it costs $10 million and has a nearly $2,000 variable cost per hour, per AOPA.org.
8 Gulfstream G150
Moving on to midsize jets, the G150, a derivative of G100, can accommodate seven passengers. It's 12 inches wider than the G100 and, unlike some of the competitors, provides a wide-oval cross-section cabin. Equipped with two Honeywell engines, it's capable of being in the air for 3,749 miles without rest and can attain a top speed of 543 mph. Costing around $15.7 million, G150 has a $2,380 variable cost per hour, per AOPA.org. While the external baggage storage at 55 cubic feet is on the low-end, the reason to own this midsize jet is its interior design. It comes with three seating configurations: Executive, Universal, and Hallmark, which allow for various permutations of the seats and a two-place divan. This is a good item to own in the midsize-jet category.
7 Cessna Citation Sovereign+
The Sovereign+ can accommodate 8-9 passengers while cruising at a top speed of 529 mph with two PW306D engines. The plus version was an improvement to Cessna Citation Sovereign, which, by the way, has already 350 or so units out in the market. With a range of nearly 3,280 miles—that’s going from Florida to Washington diagonally—the Sovereign+ takes the experience of a private jet to a whole new level. And to make the trip more comfortable, the Sovereign+ provides improved seats, friendly environmental-control systems, and a better infotainment system for its clientele. Its colossal exterior luggage capacity of 100 cubic feet surpasses that of theG150. At a price of $18.13 million, its variable per hour cost comes out to be $2,700. And, let’s not forget the reliability that comes with a proven brand name like Cessna Citation.
6 Cessna Citation Latitude
Though not exactly midsize, this super-midsize jet is another one to own. Packed with two Pratt & Whitney Canada engines, this Cessna Citation also made its way on the list. Let’s dive in. While the range increased only marginally from the Sovereign+, the Latitude has a wingspan of up to 72 feet—larger than any Cessna Citations, including the Sovereign+. Consequently, the cabin is a lot more capacious for 9/10 plus 2 people. The unit costs around $16.25 million and has a $2,935 variable cost per hour. Latitude provides an astounding 127 cubic feet of internal baggage space. More importantly, it has a private lavatory that's externally serviced. Even with the increase in the number of passengers it can carry, it has an above 500-mph top speed (513 mph, to be exact).
5 Gulfstream G280
A derivative of the G200, the G280, at a price of $24.5 million and a variable per hour cost of $3,162, is a must-have super-midsize, long-range jet. The two Honeywell HTF 7250G engines don’t get thirsty until reaching 4,143 miles; the engines give the jet a top speed of 559 mph. Its cabin can be tailored to accommodate eight, nine, or ten passengers. You also have access to 120 cubic feet of storage in-flight. Speaking of the interior, G280 brings two extra windows per side and has seats that can slide outward to accommodate posture adjustment, which you'll be thankful for after sitting for seven hours. Not only that, but all seat pairs fold into berths. Now, with all the sleeping and resting, you might be wondering about provision for nature’s call. G280 has a vacuum toilet.
4 Dassault Falcon 2000S
Equipped with two Pratt & Whitney Canada PW308C engines, this France-based jet costs $28 million, and has a $3,149 variable per hour cost. With a wingspan of 70 feet and a length of 67 feet, 131-cubic-feet of internal storage becomes a reality. Capable of flying 10 passengers at all-out, the 2000S has a top speed of 540 mph and a range of 3,852 miles. While its speed and its range might not be nearly as high as that of the G280, Flacon 2000S made some changes to the engine and body that allows it to land on shorter runways and runways requiring steep approaches, which allows it access to 50% more airports—a huge advantage that other aircrafts in a similar category lack, according to globalair.com. This becomes even more crucial for flying into developing countries with numerous small airports.
3 Bombardier Global 6000
Soaring through the skies, we come to the level of legitimate ultra-long-range, large jets. Everything increases—the comfort, the speed, the range, and the price. Costing $62.31 million with the two Rolls-Royce BR 710-A2-20 engines, the jet’s variable cost is $5,149 per hour. With a wingspan of 94 feet and a length of 99 feet, it can accommodate 12 to 16 passengers in three cabins, reaching a top speed of 590 mph and a range of 6,902 miles. The forward cabin has four chairs; the central, a four-seat conference arrangement; and the aft, a stateroom three-place divan, and two chairs. Each cabin has a total of six windows. It also has a crew rest area and a crew lavatory, in addition to the aft lavatory. At night, the seat pairs can be folded into berths. Needless to say, it's worth owning this ultra-long-range jet.
2 Gulfstream G650
With a range of 8,050 miles and a top speed of 610 mph, the Gulfstream G650 makes you feel like you're traveling in a commercial aircraft but with added luxuries only afforded by a private jet. With two Rolls-Royce BR 725 A1-12 engines, the variable cost per hour amounts to $4,834; the total cost of the jet itself is $65 million. Compared to the Bombardier Global 6000, the Gulfstream G650 provides an even wider and lavish cabin for the 18 passengers that it can accommodate. To accommodate those many passengers, it has two bathrooms—but the rear bathroom has more luxuries. In addition to having the standard passenger console for each seat, Wi-Fi is also available on board. And if you ever feel tired, just grab a cup of coffee from the espresso machine!
1 Airbus A380
While not exactly a private jet in the real world sense, it's a private jet of Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal. The Airbus A380 is the world’s largest aircraft and is used in the commercial arena for carrying passengers. It's a double-deck, wide-body plane that runs on four engines and costs nearly $437 million. But with the Prince’s modifications, it's valued at $500 million. According to jetsmagazine.com, the prince built a concert hall, a Turkish bath, and a garage for his Rolls-Royce! There are also multiple lavish suites for others on board. Since the prince is religious, there's also a prayer room equipped with an electronic mat capable of rotating in the direction of Mecca. Of course, this is an insanely expensive private jet, but if possible, it's definitely worth owning.
Sources: gq-magazine.co.uk; aopa.org; caranddriver.com