Best Plane for Charter


Well-Known Member
I am thinking about writing up a business plan (just for the fun of it) to start a single-engine airplane charter company. Just wondering what everyone thinks would be a great airplane that would be most profitable and capable of performing longer routes.

To me, the PC-12 comes to mind because of how much it can carry and the length that it can travel. But the initial cost to obtain the airplane and maintaining that beautiful craft would be to exspensive in a start up company. I also think a Caravan would be good too, but expensive to maintain. Now I am thinking of the new Mooney's Ovation 2 and Bravo that can travel real fast cheaply, but you can't carry much of a load with full fuel.

Would it be better to buy used and update it to make it a better and safer airplane or buy new or relatively new?

Any thoughts and inputs, let them come forth.
I dunno, I think maybe a new Bonanza with the large side door and club seating would be agood bet, but it's expensive as well.

I know you said single engine but I think I'd look at a queen air or older king ari or maybe a Cheiftain or Navajo.

What about a 210 or P210?
I think it depends on the market, I think a Seneca is a good certainly a good deal that could fill many markets. Maybe if the market suites it a Britten Norman Islander; they are cheap for a 10 seater.
Yeah, I know a twin would be a better idea, but I was thinking of overhaul costs and fuel, both twice as much as a single. I just wanted to see what kind of ideas the jetcareers clan can come up with.

A P210 or 210 would be great and there are so many of them around, parts would be easy to find.
I know somone who just did the figures on this exact thing. his results were.

1. Single engine 135 for pax was not do-able.

2. a King Air 200 was the best value even over a Lear Jet 35 (if both were DRVSM equipped.)

3. One needs about 1.2 million clams to get the foot in the door.
Along the same lines as the previous posts - the first order of business would be to identify your market and then make the aircraft selection. If you're going to be flying CEO's chances are they're not going to ride in a 210 or a Mooney - they'll be looking for at least a twin and more than likely a turbine airplane. If you're going to be flying tourists around then a 210 may be a good choice. If you're going to fly cancelled checks around in the middle of the night the checks aren't going to care what they ride in. And as far as I'm concerned (sorry Eagle) there isn't anything about a Mooney that would make it a good charter airplane.

TO make money it wasn't an option, actually the KA was the ONLY one that would make money and that was bout 1-2%.. hardly a boon. and not an investment by a longshot.
It's very hard to make a profit with a small charter operation.

I had an instructor way back in the day that told me if I wanted to be rich and fly the cool airplanes to go to either med or law school - I understand what he meant now.

No doubt!

Or open meth lab... I'm still thinking about that...

just kidding!
<---- Backup plan: fly drugs around South America.

Kidding? of course.
Or you can do the whole socal - Mexico trip in a single at 100AGL with no lights or xpnder at 1am.

At least that's what I heard!

One time I noticed the tach was 5 hours more than it should have been, yet the hobbs showed the correct time. I told the desk and NO one knew why; no maintaince had been done either. Wierd.... I wonder what THAT was!
Oh yeah... be a bush pilot and fly drugs to Central/South America! haha just kidding... no but does anyone remember that link to that one website where the pilot posted stories of his bush flying experiences? One time he had to transport TVs and Car Stereos in some twin-engine Cessna (310?) and had to land on a highway by order of the Mexican police.
I'd say it depends on what you want to do with it. "Charter" covers a lot of territory.

If you want to haul freight, checks, or medical samples. A Baron or Seneca would be a good bet. You might also consider a C-210 or Cherokee Six.

If you want to haul people, then a twin is advantageous due to the 135 rules. They are very restrictive when it comes to carrying passengers in a single... even a turboprop single. The Baron or Seneca would probably still be a good bet. If you want something larger, you might consider a Navajo, an Aerostar, or a Cessna 400 series.

If you want to haul rich people (since that's where the money is), you'll have to get something nicer. Maybe a King Air, Citation, or Gulfstream.