Taxpayers fork over $206,337 every hour the world’s most famous plane is in flight, according to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) letter obtained by the nonprofit Judicial Watch.
The FY15 cost per flying hour for Air Force One (VC-25A) includes “fuel, flight consumables, depot level repairables, aircraft overhaul, and engine overhaul,” according to the letter from the Department of the Air Force Headquarters Air Mobility Command to Judicial Watch.
According to the National Taxpayer Union Foundation, President Barack Obama has travelled internationally more than any other president, and he has done it on the “most expensive-to-operate Air Force One to date.”
The ageing Air Force One and it’s twin decoy will be replaced with two Boeing’s 747-8 and are expected to be operational in 2020.
Here are some of President Obama’s taxpayer funded trips:
- Obama’s October 2015 Columbus Day fundraising trip to San Diego, California, cost $969,783.90
- Obama’s June 20, 2015, golf outing to Palm Springs cost taxpayers $2,187,172.20
- Obama’s July 18, 2015, trip to New York City with his daughters cost $309,505.50
- Obama’s August 7, 2015, family trip to Martha’s Vineyard cost $619,011
- Obama’s Dec 19, 2014-January 24, 2015 Christmas vacation to Honolulu cost $3,672,798
- Obama’s June 17-19, 2013, trip to Belfast, Ireland, including a Dublin sightseeing side trip by Michelle Obama, her daughters, and her entourage, cost $7,921,638.66
According to The Los Angeles Times, in May 2015, Obama became the fourth president to have visited all 50 states.
The three-leveled “flying Oval Office” has 4,000 square feet of interior floor space that boasts a conference room, a dining room, private quarters for the president, offices for senior staff members, a medical operating room (a doctor flies on every flight), a press area, two food-preparation galleys that can provide 100 meals, and multifrequency radios for air-to-air and air-to-ground communication, according to the aircraft manufacturer Boeing.
Air Force One also comes with at least 26 crew members.
According to the White House, the retrofitted Boeing 747 can fly 6,205 miles from Washington, D.C., to Baghdad without stopping for fuel.
The plane can also be refueled while in flight in case of an emergency, The Washington Post reports.
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