Aviation Fuel Aviation Articles

FBO of the Week – Orion Flight Services Inc. (OSH)

When your FBO is in Oshkosh, WI, chances are good that you will be extremely busy the last couple of weeks of July! And no doubt the folks at Orion Flight Services are among the busiest in preparing for the influx of pilots flying in for AirVenture.

The staff at Orion are aviation career professionals, so they’re always ready for help on your charter needs, aircraft consultation, and learning to fly. They have a page set up on their website to assist in pre-registration of fuel purchase & ramp space that you’ll want to check out. FBO hours of operation during Airventure 7 am - 8 pm Daily.

FBO of the Week – Yellowstone Jet Center (BZN)

When you think of the popular attractions in the Northwest,Yellowstone National Park will probably appear near the top of your "must see" list. And if you’re a pilot, one of the best places to start is Yellowstone Jet Center in Belgrade, Montana.

Yellowstone Jet Center, since 2000, has been a destination for travelers seeking Grand Teton and Glacier national parks as well, as well as the Club at Spanish Peaks and the resorts in Big Sky. Named a top 40 FBO by AIN for many years, it’s also a great outlet for golfers, skiers, hunters and fisherman alike to begin their trek.

FBO of the Week – Metro Aviation Service (OLV)

One of the fastest growing areas in the United States is the East Memphis area of Tennessee; and at the forefront of that growth is Metro Aviation Service in Olive Branch, Mississippi. Pilots venture there for the quick turnaround and convenience offered for those either passing through, or travelling to see the FedEx St. Jude Classic in June.

Metro Aviation General Manager David Taylor is most proud of his FBO’s fuel prices, which he keeps more than competitive with the largest airports in the area. "We keep it reasonable and honest, and there’s no reason to look elsewhere!"

Think your FBO has what it takes to be featured? Give your GlobalAir.com representative a call today at 502-336-4909.

FBO of the Week - Sky Bright in Gilford, New Hampshire (LCI)

If you’re looking for a summertime retreat, you might consider starting at Sky Bright at Gilford, NH and the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee . If the name of the lake is familiar, it may be because it was featured in movies such as On Golden Pond and What About Bob? Gilford is also home of the Gunstock Mountain Resort – while typically best known for winter skiing, it offers ziplines and treetop adventure courses in the warmer months.

Lee Avery, manager at Sky Bright, mentioned that what sets them apart is "keeping customer service at its highest level." They strive for that "Wow Factor" that can only be achieved by making sure every detail is taken care of!

Think your FBO has what it takes to be featured? Give your GlobalAir.com representative a call today at 502-336-4909.

Use Caution When Comparing Aircraft Costs

When comparing aircraft costs, understand what costs are included, what costs aren’t, and how the costs are calculated. If you don’t take all three into account, you can end up with cost data, that although technically correct when viewed alone, is an invalid comparison.

Let’s take an easy one. Fuel How much do you spend on fuel? We did this for a benchmark client, asking what their cost per gallon was for fuel at home and on the road, as well as their annual fuel budget. Seemed straightforward until I started looking at the results. At home, several operators reported fuel costs of less than $2.50 per gallon. This was when then national average was over $5 per gallon. I was able to follow up with the operators and I found out two things:

1. These operators had their own fuel farms.

2. The cost of fuel to them was the wholesale cost when the truck pumped the fuel into their storage tanks.

These operators correctly and accurately reported that their fuel cost at home was less than $2.50 per gallon. The cost of the installing and maintaining the fuel tank and operating their fuel truck, as well as the taxes and fees were all excluded from their cost of fuel. Those costs were in the cost of the hangar and grounds throwing that benchmark off as well. So my intent was to arrive at the “Total cost of fuel inclusive of every cost of every item needed to get the fuel into the aircraft tank.” But without a lengthly definition and explanation, how is an operator to know exactly what I need?

When comparing costs, you need to be clear and consistent in what costs are included and how those costs are calculated.

Another area where costs can be reported in disparate ways is maintenance. “What is your cost of maintenance?” is such an open, and loaded question. Do you get your aircraft maintained at a service center? Do you have in-house maintenance staff? Do you have inventory and how/where does that cost get recorded? Did you record the costs as an accrual or as they occurred?

As an example, take a major airframe inspection due every six years on a large business jet. The cost of that inspection is $240,000. As an answer to “what is your cost of maintenance?”, it could be:

1. $240,000 this year as the inspection was done this year ($600 per hour if flew 400 hours)

2. $40,000 per year accrual for six years (or $100 per hour is flying 400 hours each year)

While in our costing we look at the $100 per hour as the cost of the above inspection, neither accounting is incorrect. When comparing costs, we stress using an accrual method. This way the cost of something is allocated over the time it took to accrue that cost.

If budgeting, then you need to look at the timing of the cost. Comparing costs by looking at a budget can be helpful as it shows not only what the costs are expected to be, but when they are likely to occur. If you are evaluating the acquisition of a used aircraft, when the major airframe inspection is next due can be important. So while Both Aircraft A and Aircraft B can have a similar budget, Aircraft B may face that major inspection sooner than Aircraft A. This information is good to know.

Comparing aircraft costs should be done using a fair and consistent method. The timing of major costs should also be considered. While no one method is the best method, the comparison should be done on an “apples-to-apples” basis and then relative differences are what adds meaning to the comparison.