How to Write a Business Plan for an Airline

How to Write a Business Plan for an Airline. The most difficult hurdle to jump in starting your own business is securing the finances to start it. Unless you are fortunate enough to have more money than you know what to do with, you will need financing. You will have little to no success in securing such financing without a business plan. Starting an airline is by no means a small endeavor, and you will need a rock solid business plan for your airline if you have any hopes to succeed.

Research your audience. You must know your potential investors better than they know themselves. A huge aspect of the business plan is marketing. You have your idea of success; you need to know theirs and how you will help them achieve it.

Write your executive summary. This is the first part of your business plan. This is where you capture the attention of your reader and you will either lose him, or peak his interest. This is where your research into your audience pays off; you will speak on terms and a level that he is very familiar with.

Include in your executive summary the bottom line, or the "what's in it for me?" that your potential investor is looking for. Chances are, she is a very busy woman and wants to know what is up without reading the entire plan. This is where you must make sure that you not only illustrate that this is an airline, but what separates this airline from all the rest. You will need to identify the principals of the business and their background and qualifications to manage it. Include how much money you need, how often you need it, if not all upfront, and especially, what that money will be used for.

Include a table of contents right after your executive summary. Be succinct. The executive summary will determine whether or not you deserve a further read, or a toss in the trash can. If your summary got his attention, don't make him sorry he turned the page.

Describe the airline and what makes it stand apart from all the rest. This is a large section that will relate your passion to this endeavor. Your vision should be very apparent in this section as you describe the service that your airline will offer, the type of company that you will make and grow. Do not forget to focus on growth. Growth means return on investment.

Devote the next several sections of your airline's business plan to the actual planning of the company. This illustrates your thought process and exactly how you will make this work. This section includes the analysis of the market that you carried out, and then your plans on how to market your business. You will also want to include your financial, operational and human capital plans as well.

Estimate the "What's in it for me?" that your audience is looking for. This section details exactly the return that you plan on giving your investor. Although you want to speak nothing of failure, you do want to outline a plan of how she can pull her commitment from your company when she wants to. You should give her several options from buy out rights to mergers and acquisitions, or board seats. This conclusion should be a big bang and leaves her with a smile on her face. Don't blow it here.

Include a section on references. This could be in the form of an appendix, or bibliography. Either way, you should include professional and personal reference letters, resumes and good credit histories for yourself and the principals of this business. You need the proof of your qualifications that you just spelled out in the previous pages of your airline business plan. Now take off.


  • Write and re-write. You will need at least several revisions and rough drafts. Consider hiring a professional resume writer or English professor to proofread and edit your final copy.


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