Starting a helicopter charter business is not everyone’s cup of tea. You need to have a passion for aviation, access to capital, and a commercial helicopter pilot license. Then, you can start raking in thousands per hour charging slightly lower rates than your competition, right?

Wrong. A helicopter charter business might seem like a “fun” and lucrative business, but there’s a lot of effort which goes into running one. Not to mention that you will have to deal with people who want free or cheap rides, and those who expect you to contribute to their charitable causes.

Become a Helicopter Pilot

The only way to make good money from a helicopter charter business is flying the bird yourself. The last thing you want to do is hire a pilot when starting, as their salary will eat up most of the profit. So, be prepared to spend £40000 or more on a commercial helicopter license. And splash another couple of thousand getting the recommended flying hours under your belt.

Get a Helicopter

If you have a couple of million stashed away, buying a brand new R44 might be the best option for you. But that rarely happens. Most people purchase used birds and hope to squeeze some life out of them before the next overhaul. Renting a helicopter is also another excellent option for people on limited budgets who want to get their business off the ground.

Additional costs

Running a helicopter charter business involves a lot of unexpected and surprising costs besides fuel. You need to factor in insurance, maintenance, business permits, parking, office space, and staff. Once you clear those, you will have a fully functional business which nobody knows about. Get the word out by running ads on popular websites such as Facebook, Reddit and Google, then hope for the best.