Kansas Jayhawks' Coach Bill Self gets a 'lifetime' Wheels Up membership

By Doug Gollan, April 3, 2021

Kansas basketball coach is receiving $240,000 in Wheels Up flight credits annually as part of a new contract the college basketball coach just signed

Wheels Up may soon have a new ambassador in the form of super successful head basketball coach Bill Self. The University of Kansas disclosed that Self gets $240,000 in annual flight credits as part of his new lifetime contract to coach the team.

His new contract guarantees $5.41 million per year. It is only a slight increase from his current contract. That deal, signed in 2012, gave him $52.2 million over 10 years, according to The Kansas City Star.

Kansas basketball coach Bill Self

In 18 years in Lawrence, Self won 82% of his games. He’s only lost 15 home games while winning 14 consecutive conference titles, although the streak was snapped in 2019.

Quick Compare Flight Pricing

So what can Self do with nearly a quarter million dollars in private jet flight credits each year?

According to Private Jet Card Comparisons’ exclusive QUICK COMPARE FLIGHT PRICING calculator, Self can make about 10 roundtrips to Aspen on Wheels Up’s famous King Air 350i, which Beechcraft manufactures in nearby Wichita.

Without winds, based on a flying time of two hours and 15 minutes each way, and excluding membership fees (we assume the university is covering the annual $8,500), the flights would be priced at $11,837 each way, including the 7.5% Federal Excise Tax.

In case he’s flying in winter weather, Self should be pleased to know that Wheels Up includes deicing costs. If he wants to stay in touch – perhaps for recruiting – there’s guaranteed WiFi.

With eight seats in the King Air, there is plenty of room for family. Self has two adult children.

Should he want to check out the site of next year’s Final Four in New Orleans, a 90-minute flight on a light jet seating six would run about $10,955 each way, including tax.

Of course, the above prices are the most Self will pay. Wheels Up’s fixed one-way rates (you don’t pay repositioning fees) are caps, so he might even get a lower price.

That’s not a sure thing, however. Wheels Up CEO Kenny Dichter recently predicted a record for private jet travel this summer. According to WingX, branded charter operators like Wheels Up racked up record flight hours in March.

The report about Self’s private jet perks didn’t say whether the university is a customer of Wheels Up’s corporate program. Or if they picked up the membership at Costco, perhaps taking advantage of the store credit.

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