Negotiating rental prices for time building

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by PilotMedic865, Jul 11, 2019.

  1. PilotMedic865

    PilotMedic865 Filing Flight Plan

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    Has anyone has had any luck with negotiating with flight schools on rates for rentals? My CFI made mention that he negotiated a half price rate on aircraft rental by building hours at night. The aircraft were sitting there not making any money at night and he convinced them that charging $60/hour for solo night time 2-3 nights a week was fiscally better than make $0/hour at night 7 days a week. Anyone else have any similar stories?


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  2. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Didn't know they were making that much margin on rentals.

    If you figure in fuel and per hour mx costs that $60/hr could be a loss.
     
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  3. TCABM

    TCABM Cleared for Takeoff

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    I’ve gotten a decent discount for block hour purchases. Hadn’t considered the ‘off-peak’ aspect.
     
  4. dmspilot

    dmspilot En-Route

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    Well sounds like your CFI might as well have won the lottery, I can't imagine most flight schools not losing money on such a deal. It probably was better for them to sit at $0/hr.
     
  5. SoonerAviator

    SoonerAviator En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Depends, if that was a dry rate, then it's probably not that much of a margin hit.
     
  6. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    Block rates were about the only discounts I have ever found..... Essentially purchase blocks of 10 hours at a 5% or 10% discount. And then when the balance in the account drops below a certain level, another 10 hours of money was deposited.
     
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  7. old_biker

    old_biker Pre-takeoff checklist

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    When I started 20 years ago, rental was $80 an hour, or $65 when bought in blocks of 10, for $650, a Cessna 172, wish I had kept on then, instead of waiting 20 years, cheapest localish is $135 an hour
     
  8. schmookeeg

    schmookeeg Cleared for Takeoff

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    Our flight school had a gross margin of 4%.

    That said, the planes were in a constant race against fixed costs (insurance, rent, staff), so the more hours billed in a given month, the better. The night flying tactic is a nice one, but 50% off would need to be dry, not wet. It's possible, particularly if you pay up front and the school was facing a large outlay (insurance, fuel load) imminently.

    You don't get what you don't ask for, so why not?
     
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  9. Mike Smith

    Mike Smith En-Route

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    When training I got 10% off by paying one amu in advance.
     
  10. Ryanb

    Ryanb Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I’d be surprised if you got that much of a discount.

    In this situation, the opportunity cost for renting out an airplane at a steep discount is likely not advantageous for the flight school. They’d rather have them sitting idle not earning any money, than renting them out at a loss.

    As others have said, the block rate is likely the only discount that you’ll get.
     
  11. TonyG

    TonyG Filing Flight Plan

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    Was able to do this with a club airplane, but a very specific deal. It was a Citabria, used for aerobatic and tailwheel instruction, and had just gotten a new engine. The club leadership had ruled that for a 25 hour breakin period, there'd be no aerobatics and no pattern work. So nobody was flying the airplane. I told them I'd put the 25 hours on it if they gave me a 50% discount. They agreed, and I took a back-country camping tour of the West. Brought it back 8 days later. Fun times.
     
  12. JScarry

    JScarry Pre-takeoff checklist

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    There are lots of airplanes that fly less than 20 hours a year. Off the top of my head, I can think of three that I know for sure and a couple more that I suspect don’t fly very often. Ask around and see if someone would add you to their insurance—I can add people to mine for no additional charge. Offer them a couple thousand dollars and a some oil changes and their airplane gets some needed flight time and you get to fly for less.
     
  13. Clip4

    Clip4 En-Route

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    The flight school where I work would say no thank you. Most our trainers are logging 1000 hours a year. Your proposed discount flights would do nothing more than run the 100 hour inspections and the engine TBOs out earlier lowing the availability of the airplanes to the full rate customers.
     
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  14. Clip4

    Clip4 En-Route

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    I don’t believe you can rent aircraft on a 4% margin. Too much risk for too small reward.
     
  15. pigpenracing

    pigpenracing Pattern Altitude

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    Go buy a $15,000 Cessna 150.. Fly your hours then sell it for $20,000.
    Not hard to figure out... If you want low cost park it on the ramp and fly uninsured.
     
  16. Mike Smith

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    yep