Why is flying so expensive?

This forum has been developed to discuss aviation related topics.

Moderators: lilfssister, North Shore, ahramin, sky's the limit, sepia, Sulako, I WAS Birddog

User avatar
PilotDAR
Rank 11
Rank 11
Posts: 3265
Joined: Sun Sep 30, 2012 6:46 pm
Location: Near CNJ4 Orillia, Ontario

Re: Why is flying so expensive?

Post by PilotDAR »

Well said Kegidog!

And, after all that fun in your 172, it's still yours to sell, perhaps for more than you paid for it. I thought that when I bought my 150 in 1987, maybe I'll sell it and buy up. I still own it, and two other planes too!
---------- ADS -----------
 
Kejidog
Rank 3
Rank 3
Posts: 146
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2016 1:55 pm

Re: Why is flying so expensive?

Post by Kejidog »

Yes. It was my goal to fly so fly i am doing.

I am sick of the guy in the $70,000 pickup truck grocery hauler with the $30,000 side by side sitting in it telling me i am some sort of 1% er.

But i live in a modest house drive a 8 year old car and spend my cash wisely. I have bought 4 sets of headsets a gps and a lot of survival gear second hand off kijiji.
---------- ADS -----------
 
User avatar
rookiepilot
Rank (9)
Rank (9)
Posts: 1900
Joined: Sat Apr 01, 2017 3:50 pm

Re: Why is flying so expensive?

Post by rookiepilot »

Kejidog wrote: Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:55 am Expensive?



Bought a solid older 172 took my PPL license training, and had an annual for well under $29,000 all in for 2017. I know losers who spent more on harleys and never put 250 hours on them and never left the tim hortons parking lot all year. Meanwhile i have visited 5 provinces with friends and family. And cheaper than a big overpowered bass boat.

It is a matter of priorities. Does someone need a diamond or a Cirrius with all the mod cons to train and locally fly.

Maybe in the age of high consumer debt, over priced mortgages and twice yearly family trips to the sunny south it is that the average person has no capacity to explore have a hobby like aviation because they are broke keeping up appearances. 30 years ago how many high end cars did you see parked outside of a slummy apartment builings?

But guess what. It has been an awesome experience for me my two kids and even my wife. And for the price of admission I would not trade it for anything.
Couldn't agree more.
---------- ADS -----------
 
User avatar
JasonE
Rank 7
Rank 7
Posts: 595
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2014 8:26 pm

Re: Why is flying so expensive?

Post by JasonE »

Ditto.

My wife and I continue to drive older cars (2004 & 2010), while we enjoy the privilege of flying around Canada. Bought and trained in my own plane (partnership) & saved a bundle on rental during my PPL training. It's not really that expensive in the grand scheme of things these days. I'd much rather go flying in my 50+ year old plane than buy a new car (or Harley) any day!
---------- ADS -----------
 
"Carelessness and overconfidence are more dangerous than deliberately accepted risk." -Wilbur Wright
digits_
Rank 10
Rank 10
Posts: 2995
Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:26 am

Re: Why is flying so expensive?

Post by digits_ »

JasonE wrote: Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:30 pm Ditto.

My wife and I continue to drive older cars (2004 & 2010), while we enjoy the privilege of flying around Canada. Bought and trained in my own plane (partnership) & saved a bundle on rental during my PPL training. It's not really that expensive in the grand scheme of things these days. I'd much rather go flying in my 50+ year old plane than buy a new car (or Harley) any day!
While all those things are great and a great way to get into flying, it is impossible for every pilot to do this, as you'd run out of "cheap" 50 year old planes pretty quickly. The easiest way to compare the cost of flying, would be to compare the rental rates, as others have done before. There does seems to be a consensus that the cost of flying is increasing.

If you look at the prices of new airplanes, it is pretty expensive to get one of those, even if you drive old cars and live in small houses.

A cheaper alternative would be ultra lights, although some of those contraptions are not always the safest.
---------- ADS -----------
 
As an AvCanada discussion grows longer:
-the probability of 'entitlement' being mentioned, approaches 1
-one will be accused of using bad airmanship
Broken Slinky
Rank 4
Rank 4
Posts: 238
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2014 10:47 am

Re: Why is flying so expensive?

Post by Broken Slinky »

trey kule wrote: Thu Apr 05, 2018 10:24 am Unless it has changed....

Landing fee for GA aircraft at LAX....$0.00

.....just saying
That's true. The business model for US airports is a completely different monster than here in Canada. In the US, they feel they are a necessity for economic development and required infrastructure. Not sure if the Feds are still funding them at the same rate but at one time they were providing 90% of the monies to develop and upgrade airports. The community or developer just had to come up with 10% of the capital. When you don't have the capital expenses to recover, you can afford to charge lower fees, etc...

https://www.ustravel.org/sites/default/ ... _0_1_0.pdf
---------- ADS -----------
 
User avatar
square
Rank 8
Rank 8
Posts: 951
Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2006 4:36 pm

Re: Why is flying so expensive?

Post by square »

Just do your own maintenance -- but don't @#$! it up
---------- ADS -----------
 
Kejidog
Rank 3
Rank 3
Posts: 146
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2016 1:55 pm

Re: Why is flying so expensive?

Post by Kejidog »

digits_ wrote: Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:38 pm
JasonE wrote: Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:30 pm Ditto.

My wife and I continue to drive older cars (2004 & 2010), while we enjoy the privilege of flying around Canada. Bought and trained in my own plane (partnership) & saved a bundle on rental during my PPL training. It's not really that expensive in the grand scheme of things these days. I'd much rather go flying in my 50+ year old plane than buy a new car (or Harley) any day!
While all those things are great and a great way to get into flying, it is impossible for every pilot to do this, as you'd run out of "cheap" 50 year old planes pretty quickly. The easiest way to compare the cost of flying, would be to compare the rental rates, as others have done before. There does seems to be a consensus that the cost of flying is increasing.

If you look at the prices of new airplanes, it is pretty expensive to get one of those, even if you drive old cars and live in small houses.

A cheaper alternative would be ultra lights, although some of those contraptions are not always the safest.

Well I still look for aircraft pretty regularly and see quite a few gems out there if you’re willing to wait and make a conditional offer pretty much immediately. I think just on kijiji this month there were 3 good 172’s sub $35,000. And a ton of 150/2’s. And that is without any particular effort on my part. Imagine if You actually went out of your way to find an aircraft.


As to the increases in rental rates. I have to ask has fuel costs not increased? Has your salary stayed the same? In my opinion it is all about priorities. It is like the guy with the 8 dollar starbucks coffee complaing about a 2 cent per liter increase in gas prices.

Flying is costly but not much more in comparison to annual resort vacations, golfing or boating. It is just priorities and what you want out of life.
---------- ADS -----------
 
desben
Rank 0
Rank 0
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2018 5:02 am

Re: Why is flying so expensive?

Post by desben »

A simple 4-hour trip in a rented C172 being $700, you don't have to do very many before you reach $10k/year for the hobby. It's expensive, and out of reach for the average Canadian worker with a mortgage and kids ($76k median family income). The original poster knows, this, it doesn't answer why.

Apparently, it wasn't always like this. On his fantastic blog, Philip Greenspun reports that in the 60's, a basic brand new Cherokee cost the same as the median family income. Imagine buying a brand new Cherokee for $76k today! No, instead, a basic certified trainer aircraft now costs more than $300k. So why? The comments on his posts are worth a read. https://blogs.harvard.edu/philg/2007/12 ... ly-income/
---------- ADS -----------
 
Kejidog
Rank 3
Rank 3
Posts: 146
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2016 1:55 pm

Re: Why is flying so expensive?

Post by Kejidog »

Yes and I am sure you could rent a plane for $30 an hour. Using an inflation calculator available online from1965 dollars to today’s works out to be $237, $16,000 worrks out to $126,500 so it is all relative. And you say that 10 grad a year is out of the average family income? Ever price a week vacation for a family of four to an all inclusive plus airfare?. People regularly do that annually and sometimes Twice a year.


As I said in an earlier post buying a good solid aircraft for sub $30,000 is still the best deal around. Does anyone learning how to fly need a sr22? Or as a ppl holder do you need a ifr glass panel. No. Lower your expectations and just go flying for the sake of it. It is not expensive for the average person. My guess to the lack of people entering the flying for fun market is that it is pure laziness and a culture of instant gratification. As our groper in command is known to say “hard things are hard”
---------- ADS -----------
 
User avatar
PilotDAR
Rank 11
Rank 11
Posts: 3265
Joined: Sun Sep 30, 2012 6:46 pm
Location: Near CNJ4 Orillia, Ontario

Re: Why is flying so expensive?

Post by PilotDAR »

"Expensive" is relative. I thought flying was a little expensive when I learned to fly in the mid '70's. Then, hourly rental of a new 150 was $18 wet, and the instructor was $22. Nine years after that, I bought one of those 150s for $7000 in good working order. I still own it. I don't think of it as being expensive to fly.

We are so fortunate to live in a country where private flying is even possible, let alone affordable! I've flown into a number of countries where a private individual has no hope of owning a plane, and little hope of ever flying one. A 182 amphib I nurtured through restoration and conversion now flies privately in Norway, the owner budgets $750 per hour to fly it there, and considering that I bought 100LL in Finland for it a few years back, for $7.50 a liter, I can see why!

With the regulatory and liability burden of making new planes, Cessna, Piper and a few others are not making a killing selling new planes - they know that their legacy products are still strong competition. If you want a quality, proven aircraft, and to operate it in the regulatory environment we have elected in Canada, the price is the price. The people who work in the aviation industry deserve to get paid fairly for their work, and to operate an aircraft, it's mostly people's salaries you're paying one way or another.

Non certified aircraft may offer a less costly path to flying, though possibly with less certainty about some aspects of the aircraft and its condition.
---------- ADS -----------
 
Post Reply

Return to “General Comments”