UNION — The low price of its fuel can make Union County Airport attractive to pilots looking to refuel their aircraft, a group of North Carolina men said Wednesday.
Greg Byrd, Tom Mackie, Bill Sword and Grady Byrd flew into the Union County Airport on their way from Asheville, N.C., to Georgetown. They said they landed to refuel and they chose to land at the airport because of the lost of cost of fuel.
“We stopped in here because of the low price of the fuel,” Greg Byrd said. “It’s $4.85 here and $7 in Asheville.”
Mackie said the price of its fuel makes the airport an attractive place for pilots to stop to refuel their planes.
“If you keep your fuel prices like this, you’re going to have a lot more people stopping in here,” Mackie said.
Airport Director Ronnie Wade said the airport can offer a lower price and still make a profit and be attractive to pilots because he charges only what is required to cover costs and make the sale of fuel profitable.
“We charge enough to cover the cost of the fuel we purchase plus credit card charges and South Carolina sale tax,” Wade said. “I then add on 25 cents per gallon on top of the credit card charges and sales tax. Other places, however, will add as much as a dollar per gallon. We still make a profit charging just the extra 25 cents but our fuel cost less than what other airports are charging and that makes us attractive to pilots.”
Wade said the profit the airport makes recently allowed it to buy a new fueling system for $7,000.
“We paid for that out of the profit we make,” Wade said. “Even after we made that purchase, we still had more left over to purchase fuel.”
The new fuel system is self-service and accepts credit cards.
Another attraction is the low cost of renting one of the 20 hangars at the airport.
“Spartanburg’s hangar rent starts $225 a month and goes up depending on the hangar,” Wade said. “Our are $150 a month.”
Wade said 19 of the airport’s 20 hangar are currently being rented.
“Usually we’re at 85 percent capacity and so we’re usually full or nearly full,” Wade said. “I’ve already got someone interested in the other hangar.”
Wade added that the hangars were not built at the expense of the county but with a state grant.
For more information about the Union County Airport and its service, call 429-1680.
Editor Charles Warner can be reached at 864-427-1234, ext. 14, or by email at email@example.com.