Even within the luxurious world of private jets, Russian oligarchs are known for having some of the fanciest and most luxurious machines. Which ones are the best among a flying fleet of fancy jets? Here are some of the 10 best private jets that frequent Russian airspace.
Table of Contents
- 10. Dassault Falcon 900EX (Vagit Alekperov)
- 9. Dassault Falcon 7X (Telman Ismailov)
- 8. Airbus A320 (Andrei Kozitsyn)
- 7. Bombardier Global 6500 (Eugene Shvidler)
- 6. Gulfstream G550 (Oleg Deripaska)
- 5. Airbus A319-133X (Dmitry Rybolovlev)
- 4. Boeing 737-7BJ (Suleiman Kerimov)
- 3. Gulfstream G600 (Sir Leonard Blavatnik)
- 2. Boeing 767-33A ER (Roman Abramovich)
- 1. Airbus A340-300 (Alisher Usmanov)
Putting together this list takes some time and effort because Russian oligarchs are notoriously secretive about the state of their private jets. While many celebrities post photos from their private jets, and their guests will do the same, Russian oligarchs are notoriously private. Besides a few salacious details about the richest of the rich, it is hard to find out the true details about what goes on in the cabins—although the rumors are sometimes more delicious than the truth.
Russian oligarchs are encountering unexpected difficulties now as they try to fly their private jets. Due to sanctions, both targeting Russia as a whole and many of these individuals, many of their private jets are grounded. Even previously friendly entities that were willing to look the other way on corruption, such as the Isle of Man, are cracking down on the shell games that Russia’s richest use to purchase and run their private jets.
After searching various sources, here are some of the best private planes flown by Russian oligarchs. This list is purely subjective, ranking planes based on the luxury of the model, any modifications, and the notoriety of the owner.
10. Dassault Falcon 900EX (Vagit Alekperov)
Compared to the luxury that tops the rest of this list, the Dassault Falcon 900EX flown by Vagit Alekperov seems relatively modest. At “only” $30 million, the executive jet offers streamlined comfort to the billionaire.
Not much is known about the state of the Dassault Falcon 900EX flown specifically by Alekperov due to the secrecy surrounding the oligarch’s holdings. However, we know a decent amount about the Falcon line itself. Dassault prides itself on the 900EX’s excellent range for a private jet, enabling transoceanic travel, and its massively comfortable cabin.
When Alekperov gets tired of his Dassault Falcon 900EX, he can fly his smaller Yak-142 from the famous Soviet (now Russian) company Yakovlev. Talk about patriotism! Alekperov can afford such expenses because he is the chairman of Lukoil and the 85th-richest person in the world.
9. Dassault Falcon 7X (Telman Ismailov)
Sometimes, we don’t know for sure if a particularly luxurious private jet is owned by a Russian billionaire due to the individual’s secrecy and reluctance to leave behind a paper trail. However, some rumors are so delicious they belong on the list anyway. One such rumor concerns Telman Ismailov and his alleged ownership of the Golden Falcon 7X VP-BVY.
The Falcon 7X is famous for its sleek exterior and elegant interior. Allegedly, the one Ismailov owns is painted gold, which is fitting with his gold theme—the controversial businessman is the owner of the gold-themed Mardan Palace hotel in Turkey.
This rumor is worth an entry on the list just to dive into Ismailov’s party habits. The billionaire loves luxury so much that a few years ago, he hired a private jet just to fly hundreds of pounds of caviar for the party celebrating the opening of the Mardan Palace, a move that made even Putin furious at how excessive it was.
8. Airbus A320 (Andrei Kozitsyn)
Andrei Kozitsyn’s Airbus A320 is one of the most expensive private jets in the world with an alleged cost of $67 million. However, don’t worry about Kozitsyn’s pocketbook: as the CEO of Ural Mining Metallurgical Company, he can certainly afford this private jet and his other toys, such as vintage World War Two automobiles and weapons.
Again, much of what we know about the Airbus A320 is based on rumors. However, Internet sleuths have pieced together that Kozitsyn bought the plane from Maan al-Sanea, a Saudi billionaire, and kept the distinctive gold livery and bird insignia on the tail.
At least Kozitsyn is generous with the usage of his private jet—Internet rumors also say that he frequently flies Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg, the local hockey team his company sponsors, in his private jet.
7. Bombardier Global 6500 (Eugene Shvidler)
Until very recently, Eugene Shvidler jetted around the skies of Europe in a luxurious Bombardier Global 6500 that cost $45 million. Although we don’t know much about Shvidler’s jet in particular, we know that Bombardier’s Global 6500 is one of the most luxurious private jets on the market, with an extensive range, spacious cabin that can fit up to 13 passengers, and amenities such as a modern in-flight kitchen.
The billionaire and dual American citizen made his fortune in the Russian oil industry, skyrocketing to the top during the heady days of privatization in the 1990s. He has close ties with Roman Abramovich (who will appear further up on this list).
Shvidler can’t fly his Bombardier any time soon because in March 2022, the UK grounded two of his private jets as part of the sanctions regime against Russia.
6. Gulfstream G550 (Oleg Deripaska)
Oleg Deripaska, the head of the Rusal group and a powerful Russian steel magnate, allegedly flies at least one, but possibly up to three Gulfstream G550 private jets. Although we don’t know many details surrounding his plane in particular, we know the magnate has several Gulfstream jets, most registered in the UK dependency, the Isle of Man.
The Gulfstream G550, also known as the GV-SP, is one of the most luxurious private jets on the market. It has a powerful Rolls-Royce engine, excellent range, and a luxurious cabin complete with leather seats.
Deripaska is one of the few Russian oligarchs who spoke out against the war in Ukraine, but he is under sanctions for suspiciously close ties to Vladimir Putin, which also led to the grounding of his jets.
5. Airbus A319-133X (Dmitry Rybolovlev)
What is an oligarch who wants plenty of space in his private jet to do? Convert a commercial jet into a private jet, which is what Dmitry Rybolovlev did with his A319-133X. The Airbus A319 is originally a passenger jetliner with a capacity of 156 passengers, but when Rybolovlev and his select few fly, they probably have more legroom.
The former Uralkali head and owner of AS Monaco decked out his Airbus A319 in a sleek striped livery, although we don’t know much about the interior.
Rybolovlev is another oligarch who is grounded by the sanctions regime as he can’t fly his private jet anymore as of March 2022.
4. Boeing 737-7BJ (Suleiman Kerimov)
Private jets are often a funnel or front for less-than-savory funds, as the reveal in the Panama Papers concerning Suleiman Kerimov showed. One of Putin’s favorite oligarchs and a suspected cog in the machine hiding the leader’s hidden wealth, the ownership of his custom Boeing 737 was part of the web that helped investigators connect his shady offshore financial transactions.
According to some sources, Kerimov has several other private jets as well and has one of the most comprehensive private fleets of any Russian oligarch at his disposal.
The Boeing 737 is also usually a commercial passenger jet, but billionaires customize it for their private purposes.
3. Gulfstream G600 (Sir Leonard Blavatnik)
With many of the oligarchs on this list, the hardest part is narrowing down which of their luxurious private planes to rank. We run into this problem with Sir Leonard Blavatnik (even though he claims that he isn’t an oligarch).
Besides the Gulfstream G600, Blavatnik also owns a Boeing 777-212ER, Gulfstream G550, and Boeing 737, the latter of which has been making frequent flights according to the online Russian oligarch tracker.
However, his Gulfstream G600 deserves special mention for its sleek design, comfortable cabin for Blavatnik and his eight closest friends, and price tag of just under $60 million.
2. Boeing 767-33A ER (Roman Abramovich)
Roman Abramovich, one of the richest men in the world, has plenty of planes to choose from when he fancies a trip. However, the most luxurious plane in his hangar is the Boeing 767-33A ER, which is also one of the most expensive private planes in the world.
According to some estimates, Abramovich’s Boeing cost $170 million. It’s no wonder that it’s so expensive, considering how much he customized it.
Allegedly, the Boeing 767-33A features chestnut-and-gold décor, several rooms including a 30-seater gold banquet hall, an anti-missile system just in case his enemies try to take advantage of his travels, and more.
1. Airbus A340-300 (Alisher Usmanov)
According to many ranking sites, Alisher Usmanov’s Airbus A340-300 is the second-most expensive private jet in the world. After making his fortune in mining, the Uzbek-Russian billionaire can certainly afford the $400 million plane.
What makes the Airbus A340-300 so expensive? The size certainly helps, as this massive, converted passenger liner is large enough to safely make flights upwards of 13,000 kilometers.
However, Usmanov spent much of that budget on interior decoration for his plane, including custom leather furniture, several “rooms” including a luxury dining room, multiple bathrooms, and even full bedrooms with beds for sleeping in the skies.