King Air: The True Cost of Aircraft Ownership
Sep 3, 2021
Before you purchase a private jet, consider the costs that are associated with jet ownership beyond the initial purchase price. This article breaks down the costs you can expect in owning a King Air. While much of the information is applicable to other types of jets, the specific calculations were made with King Air owners in mind.
What is the King Air?
The King Air is a line of aircraft produced by Beechcraft by Textron Aviation which made its first flight in May 1963 and was introduced to the public the following year. This line is split into two families: The Model 90 series and the Model 100 series with additional lines of Super King Airs (Model 200 and Model 300 series).
This line of business turboprops is known for low operating costs and durability.
Because the cost of your King Air will vary slightly due to your model, you’ll want to pay close attention to the specs of the model you pick and adjust your calculations accordingly.
Cost breakdown of the King Air
Purchase Cost – $7 million to $27 million
Purchase cost will depend largely on the model you pick from the King Air lineup. The existing models and their average prices are listed below:
- King Air C90A – $2 million
- King Air C90B – $2.8 million
- King Air C90GT – $3.8 million
- King Air C90GTi – $3.8 million
- King Air C90GTx – $3.8 million
- King Air E90 – $1.2 million
- King Air B200 – $5.3 million
- King Air B200 GT – $5.8 million
- King Air B250 – $6 million
- King Air 300 – $3.6 million
- King Air 350 – $8 million
- King Air 350i – $8 million
These prices are the averages for new King Airs. If you want to go the pre-owned route you can save quite a bit of money in purchase cost. Prices for used King Airs will vary widely depending on the number of hours flown and other factors surrounding condition.
Unless you have the money upfront, this will likely be split into monthly loan payments over a series of years. If you go the financing route, be sure to add in the cost of your monthly payments to the overall yearly cost of ownership. You’ll also need to keep in mind the expenses from incurred interest and how that affects the overall cost.
Buying the aircraft itself will be the single most expensive upfront cost in private jet ownership.
Fuel Cost – $752 per hour on average
Fuel costs average at about $5 per gallon but this fluctuates throughout the year. You can always find up-to-date national averages at Airnav or see current fuel prices broken down by region on GlobalAir.
You’ll notice that fuel prices can spike as high as $8 to $13 per gallon. Consider your budget: If the prices spike, can you reasonably afford to fly?
To calculate how much you will spend for hours flown, consider:
(GPH of your aircraft x Cost per gallon) x hours flown
The current King Air costs for fuel per hour is as follows:
- King Air C90A – $501
- King Air C90B – $501
- King Air C90GT – $574
- King Air C90GTi – $574
- King Air C90GTx – $574
- King Air E90 – $512
- King Air B200 – $629
- King Air B200 GT – $752
- King Air B250 – $685
- King Air 300 – $752
- King Air 350 – $758
- King Air 350i – $758
Crew – $200,000 per year
You’ll need a crew to operate your plane safely and correctly. This crew will vary in size depending on the size of the aircraft. Other variables when it comes to crew cost include the region you’re based out of and the aircraft type. Beyond the required pilots, additional crew may include a relief pilot and a flight attendant.
You’ll also need to consider the cost of crew training which will sit somewhere around $30,000 per year depending on the number of crew members and the amount of training needed.
Ultimately, crew costs will fluctuate greatly depending on the number of crew members you hire but you can expect the cost to come in at around $200,000 each year.
Insurance – $1,200 to $10,000
Insurance costs will fluctuate depending on what is included in your plan. You should know that not all aircraft insurance policies will include hull and bodily/injury or property damage coverage.
Other factors that can affect cost include:
- How many hours you’ll be flying
- How the aircraft will be stored
- How the aircraft will be parked
- Where you live
- The age of the aircraft
- The type of aircraft
- How much coverage you need
Because so many factors are involved in determining cost there will be wild fluctuations from one policy to the next. You’ll want to shop around and get personalized quotes that match your particular situation for a more accurate idea of insurance cost.
Landing and Handling Fees – $15 to $30 per flight
Don’t forget about landing and handling fees that accompany every flight. This fee covers the cost to land at an airport, park, and have other ground services completed. This price will vary depending upon where you’re flying into and the size of your plane.
Hangar (Storage Cost) – $300 per month
Storage costs will vary based on the type of storage you choose and where you’ll be storing your aircraft. Cheaper options will be located at rural airports. The more expensive options, on the other hand, will be at urban airports and will have hangars.
This cost will average out at roughly $300 each month.
Maintenance – $200,000 per 200 hour/year
Your aircraft will need an oil change for every 50 hours of use. This comes out to about every four months. Additionally, your aircraft will also be required to undergo annual inspections. This cost can range from $600 to $1,200. Repairs will be needed as well throughout the years, spanning from tiny updates to major overhauls. With both standard maintenance and out-of-the-blue repair work, you should budget for $200,000 per 200 hours each year.
Aircraft Cleaning – $200 to $600 each cleaning (optional)
You could tackle aircraft cleaning yourself but you can always pay someone else to handle it for you. The cost of washing and detailing your aircraft will vary based on the type of cleaning you request and the size of aircraft you own. You can expect costs between $200 and $600 with add-on services bumping the cost up over $1,000 in some cases.
Aircraft Management Fee – $5,000 to $15,000 per month (optional)
Aircraft owners have the option to pay a management company to take care of administrative headaches that come along with owning a private jet. Management companies take care of scheduling, coordinating maintenance, and other aircraft management concerns. While it is not required, an aircraft management company is a service to consider as a busy business jet owner.
Full Cost Breakdown At a Glance
You can rely on a cost breakdown to be identical to your personal real-life situation. We encourage you to consider all the unique factors of your situation, location, and differences that could cause a change in the budget. Beyond this, you should also stress test your budget to make sure you’re ready to tackle a worst-case scenario.
The cost breakdown below assumes you purchase the King Air B200 which sits in the average price range for the King Air family of jets.
The following breakdown assumes 200 hours per year of use.
|Expense||Cost Per Year|
|Landing and Handling Fees||$1,000|
|Hangar (Storage Cost)||$3,600|
|Aircraft Cleaning||$4,800 (optional)|
|Aircraft Management Fee||$120,000 (optional)|
|Total Yearly Expenses||$660,200|
If you’re breaking down your yearly expenses by flight hour then you’ll find massive differences in cost between 100 operation hours and 300 operational hours. This brings into question whether or not your situation garners ownership of a private jet or if you can get by with charters.
For more information on determining if purchasing a jet is right for you, check out the details in our article on the right time to buy a jet to make your decision.
Get Your King Air Insured
In the market for a new private business jet? The King Air may be the right investment for your needs. As with any major investment, you want to make sure your asset is kept safe and secure. We offer a range of comprehensive aviation insurance options at great rates. Make sure your new aircraft is never underinsured or uninsured, contact us to get started with your personalized quote.
Need Insurance For Your New Aircraft?
Contact us to receive your free, no-obligation aviation insurance quote.