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8 Most Expensive Planes In The World: How Much Does It Cost To Fly Like The Elite?

What are the most expensive planes in the world in 2018? The B-2 Spirit is truly the lord of the skies even on budget spend. It costs a whopping $737 million. Not even the most popular presidential plane can match that. Air Force One “only” costs $660 million. Here’s the full list of top 8 most expensive planes in the world:

  1. B-2 Spirit – $737 million
  2. Air Force One – $660 million
  3. Airbus A340-300 – $600 million
  4. Airbus A380 Superjumbo Jet – $500 million
  5. Boeing 747 – $153 million
  6. Trump’s Boeing 757 – $100 million
  7. BD-700 Global Express – $47.7 million
  8. Gulfstream IV – $38 million

Flying in an airplane can be a tortuous experience as you need to get to airports hours before the scheduled departure time to clear security. So you need to wait for a long time in the airport. Then, in the flight, you might get seated next to an annoying passenger. If the flight is long haul, you’d end up feeling cramped and suffer stiffness. Plus, the food might not be all that good. For these reasons, rich people who can afford it prefer to buy their own private jet.

Large-sized private jets offer a host of facilities such as sleeping beds, fully-equipped kitchen, bathroom with shower, conference room, internet access, and satellite communication. The jet can easily accommodate your entourage and you don’t need to shell out airplane and transportation costs for them. Plus, you can fit the jet with your favorite accessories and decorations. For instance, the Sultan of Brunei has fitted solid gold washbasins in the bathrooms of his private jet. Alux.com reports that the most expensive private jet belongs to Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal who shelled out a whopping $500 million for his Airbus A380.

Now, let’s come to the topic of airline tickets. Many budget-conscious people book early to take advantage of lower prices. But there are also plenty of well-off travelers who are willing to pay a good price to enjoy luxuries on their flight. For premium tickets, airlines are offering amenities such as private rooms with a bed, dining table, LCD entertainment system, wine list, gourmet food service, and more.

Huffington Post reports that the most expensive plane ticket in the world costs more than $30,000.  This flight is operated by Emirates on its Los Angeles to Dubai journey. It is patronized by high-flyers such as Hollywood stars, VIP businessmen, A-listers, and fashionistas. For the lavish price, they enjoy luxuries such as spa facilities, vanity tables, mattress beds, individual mini bars, and fully partitioned private suites.

Now, let’s get down to our main task and review the prices, features, and facilities offered by the 8 most expensive planes in 2018.

8. Gulfstream IV – $38 million

The Gulfstream IV is a twinjet aircraft that is designed and made by Gulfstream Aerospace, a General Dynamics company. It is powered by two Rolls-Royce RB.183 Tay turbofans. The plane is renowned for its staying power on air. In June 1987, a Gulfstream IV set world records in its class in flying west around the globe in 45 hr 25 min. The following year another Gulfstream IV plane set world records flying east around the world.

This plane is utilized by executive charter operators, companies, and private individuals. For instance, Botswana uses it for VIP transport and the Indian Air Force employs it in a reconnaissance role. Wealthy individuals such as the Sultan of Brunei and the Sultan of Johor have bought this plane. The aircraft has a cruising speed of 850-903 km/h and a maximum speed of 935 km/h.

7. BD-700 Global Express – $47.7 million

The BD-700 Global Express is a twin-engined long-range corporate plane that was designed to cater to the demand for ultra long range business flights. It was first delivered for usage in 1999. The plane has distinctive winglets on its low/swept wing and a swept T-tail with swept horizontal stabilizer. The twin engines are mounted on the rear fuselage and there are 13 cabin windows on each side. The aircraft has a cruising speed of 505 knots and a range up to 6700 nautical miles.

6. Trump’s Boeing 757 – $100 million

One of the highlights of the Boeing 757 is a glass cockpit with large computer screens that display flight info. It has a self-checking feature that alerts pilots about issues before they bloom into emergencies. Trump’s plane is one of the fastest in the world and can hit more than 500 miles per hour powered by two Rolls-Royce RB211 turbofan engines that can keep it afloat for 16 hours.

A regular Boeing 757 can seat up to 200 people, but Trump has refurbished his plane to accommodate only 23 passengers. Apart from the two bedrooms, it has a private guest room, dining room, and a video room with cinema system.  Trump pays a lavish price for these amenities and shells out about $10,800 for a one-hour flight including fuel.

5. Boeing 747 – $153 million

The 747-8 is one of Boeing´s most successful models. An unnamed client has customized his private plane with luxuries such as fully equipped bathrooms, private living room, a master suite with stunning views, a guest cabin with en-suite bathroom, and a private office. Other amenities include big screen TVs, low tables, two living areas with sofas, dining room for 14 guests, and a large meeting room. The client spent about $200 million for the facilities. No wonder the plane finds a place in our list of most expensive planes. This amazing aircraft can hit a speed of about 645 miles per hour on a 9,200-mile flight.

4. Airbus A380 Superjumbo Jet – $500 million

Airbus A380 is a double-deck, wide-body plane with four engines. The Saudi prince’s plane includes a pray room that rotates so that it always faces Mecca, a stable for horses and camels, and a garage for cars. This plane is the world’s largest commercial aircraft with huge dimensions and to accommodate it many airports around the globe have refurbished their facilities.

The Airbus A380 has a total capacity of 525 people in a three-class configuration and 850 in a single-class configuration. This plane was involved in an accident on 4 November 2010 on a flight from Shanghai to Sydney when one of its engines developed a problem which forced the pilot to land in Singapore. Luckily, there were no injuries to the crew or passengers.

3. Airbus A340-300 – $600 million

The A340-300 has a capacity of 295 passengers and can easily cover up to 7,400 nautical miles (13,700 km) during a single flight. It entered service with Air France and Lufthansa in March 1993. In fact, Lufthansa is the largest buyer of this aircraft and operates a fleet of 30 planes. The year 2006 saw the launch of the improved A340-300 Enhanced version with advanced fly-by-wire and avionics systems and newer CFM56-5C4/P engines. As of July 2017, airlines were using 104 Airbus A340-300s for their operations. This plane has a cruising speed of 871 km/h (541 mph) and a maximum speed of 914 km/h (568 mph).

2. Air Force One – $660 million

Air Force One is a triple decker with 4,000 square feet of space. This gives all passengers plenty of leg room to stretch their legs. The plane can easily hit a speed of 650 miles per hour. For medical emergencies, there is a mini hospital on board with specialist doctors and an operation theater. The aircraft is equipped to survive meteor strikes, earthquake, and nuclear war. In case of an attack, it deploy flares to counter heat-seeking missiles, ECM (electronic countermeasures), and radar-jamming technology. The plane has mid-air refueling abilities and can be refueled even at 35,000 feet. However, President Donald Trump wishes to get rid of this facility to save money.

Air Force One has sophisticated communications technology with 85 phones, 238 miles of electronic wiring, 19 televisions, a range of computer connections, fax machines, and two-way radios. It hosts two well-stocked kitchens with amenities to feed a 100 people. During a terrorist strike, it can operate as a command center. Air Force One is always given priority over other air traffic. But this does not impact commercial air traffic as this plane usually lands and takes off from military bases in the US. The plane can accommodate 100 passengers and 26 crew members.

1. B-2 Spirit – $737 million

The B-2 Spirit was launched in 1989. The program to develop it was initiated during the Carter administration in the late 1970s. Northrop was chosen to build this fighter plane. The highlight of its design is a technique called “continuous curvature” which deflects radar. In fact, its radar cross-section is just 1.1 square feet – the size of a pigeon. The bomber was first deployed in action in the Kosovo War in 1989 where it flew 50 sorties.

The B-2 costs about $135,000 per hour to operate. It has a flying range of 6,000 nautical miles, and refuels every six hours. The plane has amenities such as a hot plate to prepare food, a bed, and a toilet. One pilot can sleep at a time on long missions, minimizing fatigue during round-the-clock flights. The fighter jet has a quadruple fly-by-wire flight control system, split brake-rudders, and differential thrust to maneuver which keeps its radar cross-section low. Its engines are concealed in the wing, hiding fan blades from radar, and reducing the engine’s heat signature to prevent detection by infrared tracking systems. Finally, the B-2 can hit a top speed of 1,010 km/hour.

Category: Financial News

12 Comments »

  • rodwin says:

    Owning a private jet seems expensive from the point of view of a salaried guy. But when you think about it, these ultra successful guys who own the jet save more in time and, essentially, money by cutting down on travel time. Of course this is true for traveling businessmen and doesn’t apply to celebrities.

  • Alvin says:

    The research to develop B-2 bomber alone will supersede all the costs of the most expensive jets mentioned here. It’s a decade-long work involving numerous test runs and top-level researchers and scientists. Imagine one B-2 being shot down by an Afghan stinger. There goes the money…

  • lenon says:

    Trump’s is a 727-200!!

    • bob says:

      trumps old plane was 1 727 the new one is a used 757

      • Hilda says:

        Actually his old one was a 727-100 without upgraded engines. Heard the new owner has had scads of pro lems with it. HIs new one is a 757 but faR from a $100m aircraft. No way it could cost any where near that based on what they were asking. Why reporters don’t repeat that ludicrous #I can not imagine!

  • No Way Jose says:

    There is no possible way that Alisher Usmanov spent $350 million in upgrades on the interior of a plane. It would literally have to be made of diamonds.

    • JamesA says:

      Let’s be fair. The super rich have a need to spend more on things than they are actually worth and they only buy off certain suppliers, who overcharge them. That interior was probably only worth ~$260 million.

  • What? says:

    Was this published for the sole purpose of having a jab at Obama? Obama has not control over a plane that has been with past presidents and not purchased by him, but by the people who rely on a president being not dead during flight.

  • john says:

    These planes are relative in terms of the owners wealth. I saw the Saudi plane at the Dallas airport and it was impressive. On Air Force one, technically it is owned by the US government as are the planes used by all cabinet officials. Many US agencies have their own fleets of executive aircraft.

  • Basith says:

    This is what surprised me most in the Zhu Hai International Aviation and Aerospace Exhibition, J20–using Chinese own aeroplane engine!!!!!

    • Will Smith says:

      They may have claimed it was a Chinese engine but the J-20 definitely uses Russian engines. Also, Russian jet engines are far less sophisticated and capable compared to the West’s jet engines. Not only does the West have far superior engineering and design, their materials and manufacturing capabilities are also far superior. This results in a far more reliable engine as well as far superior fuel usage. So even if the Russians steal the West jet engine design they simply cannot manufacture it.

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