Man walking towards private jet on a runway while dragging a suitcase
Man walking towards private jet on a runway while dragging a suitcaseWe take a look at the most affordable private jets in each class: very light, light, midsize, super-midsize, and heavy.

The Most Affordable Private Jets Available Today

Whether you’re shopping – or window shopping – for a very light, light, midsize, super-midsize, or heavy jet, the most cost-effective aircraft can be a fraction of the price of the most expensive models on the market.

To aid your search, we’ve listed some of the most affordable private jets in each category so that you can get a better idea of the purchasing price range for all the different options. Note that these prices will vary depending on whether you’re buying new or second-hand.

If you’re more interested in private jet charter rates, this list will also give you a good idea of the different kinds of options available for a private jet rental or group charter.

Five of the most affordable private jet models

Very light jet: Cirrus Vision Jet

The tiny Cirrus Vision Jet cockpit
The tiny Cirrus Vision Jet cockpit.

The cheapest private jet on the market is the small but mighty Cirrus Vision Jet at around $2.85 million for a new model, while a pre-owned aircraft will set you back around $1.9 million. The upgraded G2 model sells for up to $3.6 million. The Vision Jet is the world’s first single-engine private jet and is powered by a Williams International FJ33-5A turbofan engine, which produces 1,800lbs of thrust. The aircraft took 10 years to design and build, and features a unique V-tail instead of a traditional rudder. It can cruise at 345 mph at a maximum altitude of 28,000ft, with a range of 1,150 nautical miles. Although the plane is designed to be flown by the owner, a pilot can be hired instead for greater convenience.

Passengers can enjoy a spacious cabin of 4ft tall and 5ft wide, with large windows and seating for up to five adults and two children. Luxurious amenities include an in-flight entertainment system, mood lighting and USB charging points. There’s a panoramic windshield in the cockpit as well as a cutting-edge Garmin Perspective Touch avionics suite and sidestick technology. The Cirrus Vision Jet even boasts a flight envelope and parachute system for emergencies, which will put any passengers at ease when traveling in this aircraft. 

This model is a popular alternative to airlines due to its comparatively low direct operating costs, which have been estimated at under $1,000 per hour. Other positive attributes include the fact that it’s easy to use and versatile. Its size also means that it’s easy to keep it safely parked in a hangar when not in use, as you would with any other very light aircraft.

Light jet: Cessna Citation CJ3+

Close-up of the exterior of a Cessna Citation CJ3+ parked at an airport
Close-up of the exterior of a Cessna Citation CJ3+ parked at an airport.

If the Vision Jet sounds a little tight, you can buy a brand new Cessna Citation CJ3+ for approximately $8.3 million. Launched in 2014, it’s a new and improved version of the CJ3 – named “best of the best” in the light jet category by the Robb Report in 2011– with a more comfortable cabin and an upgraded Garmin 3000 avionics system. The aircraft is certified for single-pilot operation and has an impressive wingspan of over 54ft, which is designed for extra lift and less drag.

The cabin can accommodate up to nine passengers and is 4ft 10in wide, 4ft 10in tall and 15ft 8in long. It comes in a choice of six design themes and features 14 large windows, swing-out seats, LED lighting, Wi-Fi and a standard lavatory. Also, the jet has a maximum range of 2,040 nautical miles, a luggage capacity of 1,000 lbs and is cheaper to run than its closest competitors, such as the Embraer Phenom 300.

The Citation CJ line is renowned for its range of affordable light jets and if you’re after something pre-owned, then it’s certainly worth considering the Cessna Citation CJ3, which sells for an average of $5.62 million. The previous model, the CJ2 is even more affordable at around $3.65 million, while the Citation CJ1 costs around $2.52 million pre-owned.

Mid-size jet: Cessna Citation XLS+

One of the world’s bestselling business jets can be yours for $7.6 million for a pre-owned 2008 model, up to around $13 million for the more recent 2021 model. Launched in 1998, the Cessna Citation XLS+ is a very versatile aircraft, delivering high performance on short- and long-haul flights. It has a maximum cruise speed of 507 mph and a transcontinental long range of 2,100 nautical miles. The jet can also take off from shorter runways and has a state-of-the-art Rockwell Collins Pro Line 21 avionics system. The cabin comes in six color schemes and is the largest in its class at 5ft 6in wide, 5ft 8in tall and 18ft 6in long. 

Passengers can relax with fully reclining leather seats, foldaway tables, an entertainment system and Wi-Fi. Some configurations include a side-facing divan. There’s seating for up to nine passengers and a galley for food preparation, as well as space for more than 800 lbs of baggage.

The XLS+ is the updated version of the Cessna Citation XLS. The XLS is a more affordable option if you’re after a similar aircraft with a smaller price tag. A pre-owned XLS 2004 model could be yours for around $6.30 million, while a 2009 model will cost around $7.32 million.

Super-midsize jet: Falcon 50EX

A long shot of a white Cessna Citation Sovereign flying in the sky
A long shot of a white Cessna Citation Sovereign flying in the sky.

Naturally, you’d expect the price of private aircraft to increase with size, but the Falcon 50EX is a very affordable private jet, despite its size. This is because the jet stopped being produced in 2007. The plane has an average price of just over $5 million. When it was released, the massively popular Falcon 50 was the first private jet with intercontinental range. It was recreated by Dassault Aviation 17 years after its initial release. The company kept the plane’s most popular features while revamping the rest with the latest technology. This resulted in the Falcon 50EX, a plane similar to its predecessor but superseding it in cruising speed and altitude, fuel efficiency, and range.

The cabin wasn’t hugely altered. It remained 5.57ft high and 5.9ft wide with a maximum capacity of nine passengers. The aircraft itself is 60.7ft long and 22.9ft wide with a wingspan of 61.8ft. It comes with three Honeywell TFE731-40 turbofan engines, the second generation of the TFE731 series.

Heavy jet: Embraer Legacy 650E

A blue and white Embraer Legacy 650E flying in the bright blue sky
A blue and white Embraer Legacy 650E flying in the bright blue sky.

While the cost of large jets almost always elicits shock, the most financially economical private jet in this category may surprise you. The luxurious Embraer Legacy 650E comes in at $25.9 million, a relative bargain compared to the similarly sized $61.5 million Gulfstream G550. The “E” here stands for “Evolution” and the model certainly offers that, with two Rolls-Royce AE 3007A2 engines and Honeywell Primus Elite Avionics. As an aviation industry first, the plane also comes with a 10-year or 10,000-hour warranty. 

The Embraer 650E has seating for 12-13 passengers in three separate cabin zones, allowing some to work while others sleep comfortably in leather seats. Interior amenities can include broadband, Apple TV and a worldwide phone service as well as multiple configurations which can include a conference table for business meetings for those traveling for work. The 3,900-nautical-mile range allows for longer flight hours, allowing passengers to fly nonstop from New York to London, for example.

If you’re after a more affordable option in the Embraer Legacy line, then the Embraer Legacy 650 will be perfect for you. The 650E is simply an upgraded version of this hugely popular private jet. The price will depend on the year it was manufactured. A pre-owned aircraft from 2015 will cost an average of $16.53 million, while the 2019 model will be closer to $20.6 million. 

Best of the rest

We’ve covered five of the most popular low-cost jet options, but there are many more available. Still interested in looking for more low-cost private jet options? Here are some other models that have also made a name for themselves in the aviation industry. 

Cessna Citation Mustang

Powered by a pair of rear-mounted Pratt & Whitney Canada PW615F turbofan engines, the Cessna Citation Mustang has a range of up to 1,343 miles. This aircraft is undoubtedly one of the more affordable options in the very light jet range. A single pilot and up to four passengers can be accommodated, so it’s the perfect choice for shorter trips with fewer passengers. 

A pre-owned 2013 model costs an average of $2.58 million, while a preowned 2017 model will come in at around $3.33 million.

Embraer Phenom 300E

This light jet is worth $10-11.5 million, compared to the similarly-sized $8.3 million Cessna Citation CJ3+. You’ll pick up a 2018 model for around $10.2 million, a 2020 model for $11 million and a 2022 for around $11.5 million. 

The Phenom 300E has a range of up to 2,200 nautical miles and can accommodate up to 10 passengers. This model builds on the success of the Phenom 300, which was launched in 2010, and is credited with being the most-delivered private plane in the world since 2013. According to Business Insider, more than 400 of them have been delivered to more than 40 countries. If you’re looking for a more affordable option, the older pre-owned Embraer Phenom 300 aircraft, such as the 2013 model, sells for around $6.9 million.

The updated Phenom 300E version was unveiled in 2017, with the “E” standing for “enhanced.” Features include Pratt & Whitney PW535E1 engines, as well as more leg and head space, thanks to the aircraft’s Oval Lite® cross-section cabin design.

Bombardier Learjet 45XR

This midsize private jet costs $13 million brand new – a similar price to the Cessna Citation XLS+ – with a lower price tag for second-hand versions. For example, a 2012 model will cost just over $6.5 million. The Bombardier Learjet 45XR has a range of around 2,000 nautical miles and typically seats eight passengers. It is an update of the Model 45 and was released in 2004. Upgrades include faster cruise speeds, higher take-off weights and faster-to-climb rates than its predecessor – in large part due to engine upgrades, from the original 45’s Honeywell TFE731-20 engines to the current TFE731-20BR configuration.

The previous model, the Learjet 45, costs between $3.49 and $4.30 million depending on the production year between 2003 and 2007.

Hidden costs

Bear in mind that private jet prices don’t include additional costs that affect owners, such as inspections, insurance, hangar space, pilot expenses and interior customizations. You should also take into consideration fuel costs, which vary depending on flight time and aircraft type. This is why many people prefer private jet hire over ownership.

Consider a private plane charter instead

If this isn’t the kind of investment you want to make, you can avoid these up-front costs by opting for a private jet charter or private jet lease instead. Leasing a private jet can be a viable alternative for those not ready for ownership.


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