• How much does it cost to charter a helicopter

    Aircraft Charter / How much does it cost to charter a helicopter

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    Owning to charter a helicopter can be an expensive endeavor if you are not equipped with the right tools. The helicopter charter market is less transparent than its fixed-wing counterpart, with traditional operators charging almost 50% markups on last-minute quotes. Such flight requests are also more likely to end up with unlicensed air carriers, bringing greater risks to business aviation travelers.

    As a member of NBAA and Wyvern Safety, Flapper is committed to the transparent and secure helicopter booking process. In the post below, we’ll show you how much it costs to charter a helicopter, using our Uber-like platform as a reference.

    The minimum cost of chartering a helicopter

    The cost to charter a helicopter, along with the flight crew, varies based on several factors, the most commonly used of which include:

    • Flight fee per hour flown;
    • Extra time required to start engines;
    • The cost of helipad landing fees or airport landing fees;
    • FBO (Fixed Base Operator) costs related to private jet terminal handling and utilization (for airports only);
    • Parking fees – for requests where the helicopter must wait for passengers at the destination;
    • The minimum flight or trip fare.

    To derive an hourly cost (the so-called “flight revenue rate”), an air carrier typically calculates its fixed and variable costs and imposes a small margin on this. As of May 10, 2020, the cost per hour to rent an AS350 helicopter for a short-haul route in São Paulo costs R$8,400 (about US$1800/h). An hourly rate for a large twin-engine helicopter, such as the Airbus EC145 T2, can be as high as R$20,500 (~US$4,000/h). Of course, these are not the final prices (yet), but they constitute the main cost component of any helicopter charter flight.

    There are two main differences between fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft charter prices:

    First, helicopter charter platforms do not impose a flight distance coefficient. This means that the distance between the two points corresponds to the mileage considered in the quote. Exceptions generally apply to flights in mountains or large urban areas. This is because in cities helicopters may follow special corridors and your flight may take a few extra minutes to complete, resulting in a small deviation compared to a flight time estimate calculated using a straight line. But don’t worry, modern quoting systems take these deviations into account in advance and you will be informed in advance of the total estimated time for your mission.

    Secondly, you cannot expect an operator to have the helicopter waiting for you if your trip involves multi-night stays. Helicopter flights tend to be shorter and air carriers favor volume rather than blocking slots due to wait time.

    The prices of helipad and airport landing fees depend on the location and the passenger’s “relationship” with the helipad. In May 2020, the helipad at the Hotel Faria Lima, in São Paulo, charges R$385 for the landing of a light helicopter and the place is open to the public . Landing at the Emiliano hotel costs R$800 and you must be a guest to be able to land at the establishment. Helipads can also distinguish between the following variables:

    • Members vs price for non-members;
    • Night rates vs day rates;
    • Helicopter weight.

    As if that weren’t enough, some helipads impose restrictions on heavy helicopters, due to the class of a helipad or their internal noise policies. Thus, you will be able to land in an Airbus EC 145 helicopter at the Centro Comercial Faria Lima [SIJF], but not at the Faria Lima Blue Tree Hotel [SSOA].

    Equipped with an understanding of hourly rates, landing fees and flight schedules, we are now ready to calculate the exact cost of chartering a helicopter.

    How much does it really cost to charter a helicopter?

    The minimum cost of chartering a helicopter in Brazil is R$10,720 (about US$2500) on an urban route São PauloGuarulhos Airport, flying in an affordable turbine helicopter like the AS-350. The cost of chartering the same helicopter to a resort in Angra dos Reis is almost R$9,000 (~US$1,640), considering a maximum capacity of 3 passengers.

    One of the most expensive charter flights possible involves renting a twin-engine helicopter on a long-haul flight São PauloRio de Janeiro. A luxurious Airbus EC 155 helicopter has 9 seats and can be chartered on the above route for approximately R$50,000 (~US$9,120).

    The compilation below includes the top 10 helicopter routes quoted by our passengers using the Flapper charter platform. You can quote any flight, with real-time price estimates, by going to our home page and typing in the helipad or airport you want to travel to.

    *The values mentioned in this post were calculated in May 2020 and are subject to change without prior notice. For up-to-date quotes, download our app or check our website.<>

    Charter a helicopter from São Paulo (Campo de Marte, SBMT) – Angra dos Reis (Frade, SNFD)

    Suggested aircraft: AS350 B2/B3.

    Charter a helicopter from São Paulo (Faria Lima, SSOA) – Guarulhos Airport (SBGR)

    Suggested aircraft: AS350 B2/B3.

    Charter a helicopter from São Paulo (Campo de Marte, SBMT) – Paraty (Laranjeiras, SDLA)

    Suggested aircraft: AS350 B2/B3.

    Charter a helicopter from São Paulo (Campo de Marte, SBMT) – Ilhabela (Maroum, SJDO)

    Suggested aircraft: AS350 B2/B3.

    Charter a helicopter from Rio de Janeiro (Jacarepaguá, SBJR) – Angra dos Reis (Frade, SNFD)

    Suggested aircraft: Bell Jet Ranger.

    Charter a helicopter Rio de Janeiro (Lagoa, SDRJ) – Búzios (Hotel Insólito, SIHH)

    Recommended aircraft: Bell Jet Ranger..

    Charter a helicopter from Rio de Janeiro (Santos Dumont, SBRJ) – Galeão Airport (SBGL)

    Recommended aircraft: Bell Jet Ranger.

    Helicopter charter from Curitiba (Bacacheri, SBBI) – Balneário Camboriú (BC, SNTJ)

    Suggested aircraft: Bell Jet Ranger.

    Charter a helicopter from Fortaleza (SBFZ) – Jericoacoara Essenza Hotel

    Suggested aircraft: AS350 B.

    Helicopter charter from Porto Alegre (SBPA) – Gramado / Canela (SSCN)

    Suggested aircraft: AS350 B2.

    Why book your next flight with Flapper

    Flapper is a highly acclaimed company that has brought together 30,000 content clients from all over the world. Booking a flight with Flapper is much more than just a transaction. It’s a trip to explore executive aviation from a new point of view. We are rated “Excellent” on TrustPilot and maintain impeccable safety records.

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    We offer a personalized service in different countries, 100% adapted to your needs.

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    Thanks to our technology, we are able to respond quickly and offer numerous payment options.

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    Choose from over 100 different types of jets, helicopters and turboprops.


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    See also

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