Runing costs for a Robinson R44

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Hi there, I read your page which was hugely informative - thanks. You
quote the running costs for a Robinson R44 at $190 per hour and state
that this is with a realistic maintenance schedule and taking into
account the 2200 hour overhaul / service. Does this include an
insurance budgeting for the aircraft too? If not, do you have any
idea what the general cost of insurance might be?

-- Richard O'Hagan, June 11, 2010


Insurance is an annual rather than an hourly cost. With a domestic carrier such as Starr or Chartis it will cost about $18,000 per year for a mid-priced Raven I. So if you fly 1 hour per year, it will cost about $18,190 per hour plus another $5,000 for an annual inspection.

-- Philip Greenspun, June 11, 2010

I am trying to figure out whether there is 4 seat helicopter that costs less to run than the R44 when used less than 100 hours per year.

As an extreme example, if the helicopter were to sit in a hangar all year, the 12 year inspection sets the annual depreciation to at least $10k. The significant number of expensive, time limited parts sets the R44 apart from other helicopters.

If the R44 is used by a training school, the depreciation due to time may not represent any additional cost at all if the 2200 hours are reached prior to 12 years. But for periodic private use, it really does bump up the hourly cost. Are there any other options?

-- Simon Stuart, March 16, 2012