Cost comparison: flying yourself vs. flying commercially

For most businesses, arranging travel for staff can be a minor or major headache. Not only is it fraught with distraction and expense of both time and money, but there are often glitches during the trip that make things worse, such as cancelled flights or changes in the schedule of the person or business one is meeting with. Without a way to respond on the fly, the hassles of staff travel can start to outweigh the benefits.

There is an alternative worth considering. Flying cars will provide a new paradigm in travel – a paradigm worth examining, as it completely resets travel for those intermediate sized trips. For sake of comparison, let’s review a few business trip scenarios, with their relative costs and time spent.


Los Angeles to Las Vegas

By car, 8 hour 20 min total driving, 542 miles round trip

Cost for employee travel time 8.2 x $40/hr = $328

Auto expense $0.59/mi = $320

One hour meeting plus layover 2 x $40/hr = $80

Overnight expense 1 x $180 = $180

Total for trip = $908 – Workable for afternoon or morning meetings

By commercial aircraft, 2.5 hours of actual flight non-stop

Cost for employee travel time* 6.5 x $40/hr = $220 (includes getting to airports, TSA, and to meeting)

Rental car expense (or taxi) $50

One hour meeting plus layover*4 x $40/hr = $160 (time spent between flight to and flight home)

Total for trip = $430 – Workable for afternoon or morning meetings.

By flying car, 3 hours actual flight non-stop

Cost for employee travel time* 4 x $40/hr = $160 (drive time to/from nearest airport, and meeting)

One hour meeting $40

Use of Switchblade cost* $36/hr = $108 (including fuel, maintenance, insurance)

Total for trip = $308 – Workable for any time meetings

Time saved =  6.2 hours less than driving, 6.5 hours less than flying commercially


Bowling Green, KY to Chicago, IL

By car, 12 hours 30 min total driving, 820 miles round trip

Cost for employee travel time 12.5 x $40/hr = $500

Auto expense $0.59/mi = $484

One hour meeting $40  (considering no layover if morning meet scheduled)

Overnight expense 2 x $180 = $360

Total for trip = $1384  Two day trip required

By commercial aircraft, not possible

By flying car, 5 hours 30 minutes actual flight non-stop

Cost for employee travel time* 5 x $40/hr = $200 (includes time to nearest airport and meeting)

One hour meeting $40

Use of Switchblade cost* $36/hr = $170 (including fuel, maintenance, insurance)

Total for trip = $534  Workable for one day trip

Time saved =  7.5 hours less than driving, with complete trip in one day

When you compare the effort required to drive medium distances versus the effort that it takes to utilize a flying car, one can visualize the savings in time and money, and the decrease in delays that are inherent from staff being away from the office. Having a staff flying car will open up new potentials for business, well beyond what is realized today. By expanding the size of the region to service or sell to, businesses can concentrate more on those portions of work where their expertise or staff capabilities make them the most valuable, and reap the benefit from higher returns on each staff hour.

The comparison to flying commercially brings up two major points. The first is that your capability to increase the size of the region to which you service or sell doesn’t depend on whether commercial flight is available there. Your business can expand viably into places where your competition won’t be able to reach easily, and so gain the upper hand by default. The second is that you can locate a business in a less expensive area, or one that has better quality of life, and still be responsive to clients or customers in a more major metropolitan area. This model won’t work for every type of business, as the Internet and mail service can do the same thing more inexpensively for sales and supply operations.  However there are many types of businesses for which this would fit in well and provide a level of choice and freedom not currently available.

The more valuable your traveling personnel are, the larger the benefit your company receives. For key executives, or others who are the top paid people and very in demand, the obvious advantage becomes more pronounced. Up to 600 miles, having a Switchblade flying car can provide capabilities to move staff to and from meetings in a single day. This is much less disruptive than multiple day absences for key personnel, and that alone can make travel by flying car worth pursuing. If there are regions near you that are underserviced due to being harder to reach, you are looking at a large upside potential. Take a look on a map sometime, and see if these hard to reach locations have an airport. The results may surprise you.

–  Martin Swift


2 Comments Add yours

  1. ziaspace2016 says:

    For any small to medium businessman this revolution in travel will make your business more fun, will make you business more attractive, and the best of all more efficient!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Brian says:

    The costs can be even more depending on the situation. A lot depends on the number of people traveling. Both the car and flying car, and for portions of the others, it is a per person cost for air fare and possibly lodging. The cost a single rental car for group travel would be the same as for one person.
    Another consideration would be is the individual piloting the flying car also the business traveler or the driver for the business traveler.

    Liked by 1 person

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