To please their super wealthy customers – mostly Saudi royals and Russian oligarchs – the makers of jumbo jets like the Boeing 747 and Airbus A380 are outrageously personalizing their aircrafts.
They look like huge luxury apartments. The only difference being, of course, these opulent homes they can fly.
Wired recently reported on a “Billionaires Study” commissioned by corporate jet manufacturer Airbus, which sought to understand exactly why the uber-rich now prefer to fly in jumbo jets instead of private planes.
The research found that rich people just “like to travel with family members and business associates.” It’s as simple as that.
However, the absurdity of it all doesn’t stop here.
According to reported estimates, a private, customized Boeing 737 is worth a whopping $80 million while the even bigger Boeing 747 goes for $280 million, However, if you have more to spend, the massive double-decker Airbus A380 is available for a preposterous amount of $300 million.
Sounds crazy, doesn’t it?
As shocking as these figures may seem, billionaires, especially from the Middle East and Gulf states, have always loved traveling in ridiculously expensive aircrafts. Puny private jets just don’t make them happy anymore.
In 2011, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) quoted an article in Aviation Week & Space Technology that stated “hunger for really big birds remains hearty.”
Sales of private jumbo jets were “breaking records” almost three years ago while makers of private jets such as Gulfstream experienced a significant drop - 40% from 2008 through 2010 - in their deliveries, according to the data from the General Aviation Manufacturer’s Association.
In 2007, Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal became the first person in the world to buy his own A380 superjumbo jet which was called “The Flying Palace”. The aircraft really does justice to its name.
Now, have a look at these airborne enchanting castles in the images below: