How Much Does a Helicopter Cost?
5 Popular Helicopters From Cheapest to Most Expensive
Have you ever wondered how much a helicopter costs?
I have too. In fact, I’m sure lots of people have wondered about the price of a helicopter. I decided to do some research and write this article to give people a realistic ballpark price range for common and popular helicopter models. I’m going to start with the cost of a basic, low-end helicopter, then work up to some of the more advanced and expensive helicopters.
Generally, the first thing to decide if you are looking at the cost of a helicopter is whether you are after a smaller two-seater or a larger multi-passenger model. One of the most popular brands in the world when it comes to helicopters is Robinson. Although at one time, Bell manufactured more helicopters than any other company (primarily due to the popularity of their B206 JetRanger), Robinson helicopters are now renowned for costing less to buy and run. Read on for a price comparison chart and additional info about some of the most commonly purchased helicopters available to the public.
Helicopter Prices by Model
1. Robinson R-22
2. Robinson R-44 Raven I
3. Robinson R-44 Raven II
4. Bell B206 JetRanger
4. Eurocopter EC120 Colibri Hummingbird
1. Robinson R-22
Considered by many to be one of the world’s most economical helicopters, the R-22 carries a base list price of about $250,000 brand new. There are also plenty of excellent deals to be found on good-quality used R-22s, usually starting from around $100,000–$150,000.
Due to the R-22’s cheap operating costs, it is often used as a training helicopter. This lightweight two-seater has very low inertia which allows it to be extremely responsive to flight control inputs. In short, it is fun to fly. However, the R-22 is not very forgiving of pilot-error or sluggishness and as such is not recommended for beginners or those without much flying experience.
Price: Approx. $250,000
2–3. Robinson R-44 Raven I & II
The Robinson R-44 Raven line is a very popular choice among flying experts. Many argue it is the worlds best model for personal ownership regardless of price. It has four seats and comes in two models, the Raven I and the Raven II.
The Raven models are heavier than the R-22, which allows them to fly through wind gusts and turbulent air more solidly. They are also much safer to fly as "training helicopters" because they allow pilots several additional seconds to activate autorotation, a feature used to land during an engine failure.
- Raven I: Approx. $340,000
- Raven II: Approx. $415,000
4. Bell B206 JetRanger
The five-seater Bell B206 JetRanger is another very popular helicopter, both with military personnel and civilians. It has a two-blade main rotor and a two-blade tail rotor. This model and all of its variants are what have kept Bell Helicopters on par with the Robinson line in terms of popularity. It costs considerably more than the R-44, but is also a little larger.
Price: Approx. $700,000
5. Eurocopter EC120 Colibri Hummingbird
The Eurocopter EC120 is a very quiet and comfortable helicopter, but it does come with a high price tag that reflects its advantageous features. Considering it has five seats and a single-engine and rotor, it is a relatively light helicopter. It is also equipped with numerous crash-resistant technology systems involving both the seats and the fuel system.
Price: Approx. $1,700,000
What's Your Helicopter Price Range?
If you are interested in purchasing your own helicopter, then you're probably looking at a price tag of anywhere from $250,000–$1,700,000. Depending on whether you want a small, responsive two-seater or a spacious five-seater with state-of-the-art safety features, you could be spending anywhere from a quarter-million to almost two!
Obviously there are numerous factors to consider (training costs, operational costs, storage costs, etc.), but hopefully you now have a realistic idea about the upfront cost associated with purchasing a new helicopter. Whether you were just curious or are seriously considering buying one, now you're in the know!
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.