Just as the cost of filling up your car is considerably different from pump to pump, so fuel prices vary for private jets.
While short term fuel price fluctuations do not get passed onto the private jet customer, the long term price of oil is perhaps the single biggest inhibitor to global expansion of aviation.
Careful planning and supplier choice by your pilot or operator can make a real difference to overall price-competitiveness – and their commercial success.
Guest blogger DJ Post, Fuel & Ground Support Relationship Manager at Multi Service Aero, reveals how private jets refuel.
Fuel prices vary across the world with a number of factors influencing price, including geographical location and economic conditions.
There are parts of the world in which prices are consistently low.
Certain situations in the world such as the current situation in North Africa and the Middle East have an immediate effect on the crude oil price as well as aviation fuel.
How pilots choose their fuel supplier
Pilots choose their fuel based on their type of operations. Some pilots go for high service and are willing to pay a little extra for this, others are strictly bound by their ops team and get instructions based on price.
A third group simply decide at the airport when landing and the first truck that shows up will get the sale.
It can be worthwhile to shop around for fuel and walk through the different price lists of suppliers.
Although one needs to be careful not to end up with too many cards as this will result in having to deal with too many different fuel bills – the verification and payments process might cost more money than you save on the actual fuel price. A card that can be accepted by many suppliers might be your best choice.
Tendering & hedging
Tendering fuel seems to be very popular these days, although this restricts you to one supplier, leaving no alternative to switch to when the level of service is not as expected or a ‘better’ deal shows up.
Tendering might be more beneficial when hedging fuel.
Hedging is making sure that your fuel price will be fixed over a period of time which will help to better calculate fuel costs and consequently the price you are charging a customer.
This seems to be a common practice among big operators.
Predicting oil prices
Analysts have different ideas about the crude oil price in 2013. Views range from 115 dollars at the end of the year to 80 dollars, which is a huge difference. The fact that analysts’ estimates are so far apart shows how hard it is to predict oil prices.
Careful planning, and checking if the price you think you are getting is the price you are actually charged, looks like the best advice for 2013.
“Approximately one quarter of the cost of a private jet charter is fuel. Aircraft operators with the best fuel-buying policy will therefore be able to offer the most competitive charter rates to PrivateFly’s customers.”
To search for the most competitive prices for your next itinerary, contact our 24-hour team on +44 1747 642 777 or use our online flight search.