By far the most expensive aspect of Ministerial travel in recent years has been the use of the various government jets.
Technically, there are two, a Gulfstream IV for longer journeys and a Learjet, which is generally used for short hops around Europe.
Aside from that, the government also makes frequent use of the Beechcraft and a number of Air Corps helicopter for their VIP travel needs.
The costs involved are quite simply massive and since 2006, the cost of travel for the Gulfstream and the Learjet has been estimated at around E10.6 million.
These figures are worked out on the basis of per hour flying costs, which have been provided by the Department of Defence.
Currently, these stand at E7,890 for the Gulfstream IV and E2,950 for the Learjet.
The hourly cost for the Beechcraft is E1,770 and the estimated hourly costs for the Eurocopter and Agusta Westland choppers are a conservative E1,000 and E1,800 per hour respectively.
Anyway, for people who want to get an idea of how much travel is involved, I’m uploading records of Ministerial Transport from 2006 until date.
They are excel files and you can use the buttons down the bottom to jump from one type of aircraft to another.