Business aviation market in the United States - Statistics & Facts

The business aviation market consists in the use of any general aviation aircraft for a business purpose. A business aircraft is one designed for transporting small groups of business people for commercial reasons at a time convenient to their needs. Business aircraft may be adapted for other roles such as, evacuation of casualties or express parcel deliveries, and are also used by public bodies, government officials or by the military.

The United States has by far the largest market in the world, with almost 21,000 business aircraft in 2017. By contrast, in that year there were under 4,000 business aircraft in all of Europe. In 2017, business aircraft operators flew a total of 1.57 million hours in the United States, with the majority of flights taking place in California, Texas and Florida.

The business aviation community consists of companies of all sizes that rely on many different types of aircraft — from single-pilot airplanes to turbine aircraft — that fly internationally, to helicopters that survey rush-hour traffic. Some of the biggest manufacturers of business aircraft include: Bombardier, Cessna, Dassault, Gulfstream, and Embraer.

Overall, the capacity of the industry has grown moderately in the last three years, with the total fleet size in the U.S. increasing from 19,894 in 2015 to the above-mentioned figure of almost 21,000 aircraft in 2017. Likewise, total flight hours in the U.S. increased from 1.41 million in 2016 to 1.57 million in 2017. However, this overall growth does not necessarily translate into growth for individual operators. Annual revenue of industry-leader Gama Aviation decreased from 236 million in 2015 to 207 million in 2017, while four of the 15 operators with the largest aircraft fleets saw their fleet size shrink between 2016 and 2017.

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Business aviation market in the U.S. - Important statistics

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