If we are going to be honest, most people have never heard of the Gulfstream 200, but it’s not because they haven’t seen one. They just don’t know that they have seen one. For an average going price of about $5 million it is owned by businesses and professional athletes alike. It was one of the most popular private jets in the early 2000’s and some owners haven’t felt the need to upgrade. This list of 10 things will show you why.
1. It is one of the safest ways to travel.
There have only been 3 reported safety incidents with the Gulfstream 200, the latest in May of this year which happened in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. The crew and 4 passengers escaped with only minor injuries even though the chartered plane broke in two pieces.
2. It is manufactured by an Israeli company.
Israeli Aerospace Industries is headquartered in Ben Gurion International Airport, Tel Aviv, Israel. It is a major Israeli manufacturer of international defense systems, including space technology. This is one reason the aircraft is so popular – and safe.
3. Fuel costs are actually decent.
If you fly your privately owned Gulfstream 200 for 400 hours a year, your estimated fuel costs based on current oil prices would be about $4.40 per gallon. True, that is almost twice as much as your average gallon of gas for your car, but then your car only can go about 80 – 90 miles per hour while the Gulfstream 200 usually goes between 430 – 450 miles per hour.
4. Ronaldo owns (at least) one.
The Spanish soccer star’s customized version has a separate guest bathroom, Internet access, telephone, a microwave oven, roomy refrigerator, and over the top entertainment system for his frequent travels around Europe.
5. Landing on foreign country runways seems to be problematic.
Given what was just said about Ronaldo owning one, maybe you might question his choice. Other than the earlier crash mentioned, the G200 has had two other mishaps: one ran off the runway in Lagos, Nigeria, and one that was on a training flight on Yangzhou Taizhou Airport’s runway in China. But these seem to be pilot errors more than an aircraft malfunction, so it seems Ronaldo is safe.
6. There are only 250 available in the world.
They stopped making them 7 years ago, so it really is a limited edition – whether it was intentional or unintentional. There are more modern versions such as the G450 and G550 that are owned by famous people like Michael Jordan, so you can get one for cheap if you shop around online.
7. It will cost you 20% of the price of the plane in annual operating expenses.
Speaking of shopping, you can buy one online (kind of) if you have a couple of million sitting around with nothing special planned for it. The average annual operating costs are just over $1 million a year flying 400 hours. If you look at it in a different way, the annual operating costs make the purchase price of the plane cheap. But with annual engine overhauls and regular maintenance, the plane will be good for 20 years or more.
8. You don’t have to buy one to fly in one.
If you just want to go for a flight to try it out, you can charter one for about $4500 an hour. But if you do be sure that the flight crew is included because their services run add another $100 an hour to the price. Even if you only do it once, you are likely to be the only kid on the block who has ever flown in one.
9. You can fly from the United States to Europe without refueling.
The maximum range of the G200 is 4,141 statute miles, which is the same as a standard mile (5280 feet). From New York to Paris is only about 3,600 miles, which means you can reach most points in Europe without much trouble. Of course, if you run into some stiff headwinds you might want to have a Plan B.
10. It’s not a Party Plane.
Though movies show serious parties going on in airplanes (we’re watching you Wolf of Wall Street) the G200 only seats 9 or 10 full sized passengers. It is advertised as a business jet, and when you look at pictures of its interior you will see why.