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Robust pre-owned sales demonstrate private flight benefits
As the commercial aviation sector has been decimated, business aviation has held up relatively well, and it has welcomed many new customers. This has had a knock-on effect on aircraft sales in the US, Europe and beyond.

Analysis of data from February 2021 reveals that globally, 2,227 pre-owned jets were purchased last year, worth over an estimated $14.5 billion. In the US, which accounts for over 70 per cent of the pre-owned jets purchased annually, 2020 saw a 9.5 per cent increase in sales when compared to the previous year of 1,637 sales versus 1,495.

Europe is the second biggest market for the purchase of pre-owned jets, where 154 were bought last year compared to 152 in 2019. South America is the third biggest market, with 122 pre-owned jets being bought in 2020.

In terms of the type of pre-owned private jets bought last year, in the US 738 were light jets, 566 were medium jets and 333 heavy jets. The most popular pre-owned aircraft purchased was a Citation CJ3, with 51 purchases.

In Europe, 64 pre-owned light jets were purchased last year, 46 medium jets and 44 heavy. The most popular models purchased were the Citation Mustang, with six purchases, and the Citation Jet, also with six purchases.

Colibri Aircraft MD Oliver Stone says: “The sale of pre-owned private aircraft has held up well because the benefits of flying privately have been clearly illustrated during the coronavirus crisis. As the commercial aviation sector has been decimated, business aviation has held up relatively well, and it has welcomed many new people who have never flown privately before.

“The number of private aviation flights in Q4 of last year was only down 16 per cent in the US when compared to the same period in 2019, and the corresponding figure for Europe is a fall of 21 per cent. For commercial flights, there were 63 per cent fewer in the US, and a fall of 82 per cent in Europe.”

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