Over the past few months I have met and chatted with many professionals from flight academies and institutions. One thing I have noticed is that there is some confusion around the benefits of leasing an aircraft in the piston space. What I want to do is share with our readers, what I believe to be some of the benefits of aircraft leasing so that they can see that options do exist. Here are some insights into ways in which a flight training program can benefit from leasing aircraft.
Payment Management: Many universities and academies are currently leasing their planes but they are doing so on a plane-by-plane basis with individual owners. Talk about a headache! If you partner up with an organization that can provide you with all of the aircraft you are going to need in your fleet (these companies do exist) you will find your headache will go away. That way you only have to deal with one owner and one voice.
Newer Aircraft and Commonality: It would be ideal in any flight training program to have fleet commonality, and for some of you newer aircraft to attract students. Sometimes the 1970 172’s aren’t ideal for spurring student enrollment numbers. With an aircraft leasing program you can have commonality of fleet and newer aircraft than you have now, and surprisingly it will not cost you an arm and a leg.
Fleet Transition: If you have owned your aircraft for twenty something years you are probably thinking about upgrading. One of the biggest concerns with upgrading is figuring out how to transition out the old aircraft when bringing in the newer aircraft, without disrupting the current operations. I am here to tell you from experience that it can be done seamless and effortlessly. I have seen it done here at Brown, it is just a matter of finding an aircraft leasing company that offers this kind of service.
Flexibility: In the proper aircraft leasing arrangement, the lessee has the ability to either own the aircraft at the end of the lease or to send the aircraft back to the lessor. Depending on the needs and goals of your program, you may want to own the planes or you may not. The beauty of it is that with the right aircraft lease you can choose either method.
It is Not Expensive: Leasing piston aircraft is not expensive; you can control how much you spend based on the aircraft you want. If you have looked at the price of purchasing a new aircraft these days, I think you will see that purchasing is not always the cheapest solution. Yes you will get the satisfaction of owning your own planes but that will be at the sacrifice of your wallet. Point being, you have the ability to choose how much you want to spend by your choice in aircraft and length of the lease.
Hope this has helped shed some light on the mysteries of piston aircraft leasing. Happy to answer any questions or elaborate further for anyone that would like some help or more information.