It must be difficult living the life of an athlete. After all, not only do you get to play your favourite sport professionally (which we imagine they’ve always dreamed of doing), but they also get to experience life in the fast lane – and we mean that quite literally. From fast cars to big houses and beyond, there are very few things that money cannot buy: although some would argue happiness is one of those things.
Regardless of all that, though, we’re here to focus on a very specific topic. This is going to trigger some folks out there and we can completely understand why, but at the end of the day, it’s better to just accept that there are people out there who live like this. Otherwise, you’ll just be angry all the time and that’s not good for anyone.
Private jets are often reserved for the true ‘elite of the elite’ and there’s no real way of getting around that. It’s such a luxurious way of getting around that it shouldn’t exactly come as a shock that the elite among us want to travel that way.
There are only really a handful of people that we’d ever have a problem with flying on one of these, and that’s mainly only because of the inevitably obnoxious social media posts. Still, we can appreciate the grind and hard work that went into getting where they want to be, even if we’re insanely jealous.
25 Tisha Alyn Abrea – Fan Favourite
Tisha Alyn Abrea won’t be all that known to many, but those who do know her will be aware of her status as a golf pro. She has stated many times in the past that one of her primary goals is to make golf cool again, and as weird as that may sound to people who aren’t a fan of the sport, it’s certainly doable.
Tisha has a great attitude, which is likely one of the reasons why she’s so loved. Above she’s pictured heading to her first US football game, and of course, she’s taken a private jet to get there.
We can only imagine the kind of fury from all of the middle-aged moms out there.
24 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga & Gael Monfils – Tennis’ Fringe
Despite not being viewed as two of the ‘elite’ stars in the world of tennis, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Gael Monfils still deserve to be recognised as being amongst the best of their generation. In another era, they may have been fortunate enough to pick up more pieces of silverware, but alas, that isn’t how the sport works.
The Frenchmen are clearly good friends, though, as seen by this shot of them on a jet. It’s nice to see that friendships can be formed on the tour, because let’s face it, tennis is an individual sport and egos always threaten to get in the way of anything positive.
23 Golden State Warriors – Up, Up And Away
It’s the Golden State Warriors. Is anyone really surprised that they’re on this list?
We’re talking about a team that continues to push the boundaries regarding what is and isn’t possible in the world of basketball, and that’s a little bit exciting.
They possess some of the biggest and best stars in the sport, and when you consider how dominant they’ve been over the course of the last few years, it’s hardly a shock to learn that they travel this way – and we can only imagine the chaos on one of these flights after winning another NBA title. The mind boggles.
22 Lewis Hamilton – Obnoxious, But He’s Very Good
Again, his personality may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but Lewis Hamilton is still an all-time sporting great.
The five-time Formula 1 world champion has set the standard for what it means to be a great racer over the course of his career, and while there have certainly been bumps in the road, that doesn’t mean he isn’t still wildly successful.
He does his own thing, he doesn’t listen to what anyone has to say about him (and rightly so), and he even went to the extent of buying his own private jet.
He has built himself up from nothing, and he deserves to sit atop the throne.
21 Novak Djokovic – The Tennis Star Loves It
While Novak has had his ups and downs, as is the case with most tennis stars, he’s still an all-time great – even though he’s been in the same era as Roger Federer, Rafa Nadal and Andy Murray.
He’s such an enjoyable player to watch because you just never know what he’s going to do next, which always makes for a fun viewing experience.
He doesn’t get nearly enough credit for what he’s been able to produce during his career, but that’s okay. Why? Because he clearly doesn’t put much stock into it, and he spends his time playing tennis and enjoying himself.
20 Kobe Bryant – NBA Sensation
Before LeBron James, there was Kobe Bryant, and we’re not exactly stating some kind of new revelation by saying that. The Los Angeles Lakers star led the California-based team to many World Championships, and he built an empire for himself along the way.
He’s someone who will continue to be involved in basketball even now after his playing days are over, and even though he’s a polarising figure, his greatness still speaks for itself.
Just imagine for a second that you were Kobe Bryant: wouldn’t you fly around everywhere in a big fancy jet? We most certainly would, and we wouldn’t think twice about it.
19 Cristiano Ronaldo – Of Course He Flies Private
We noted that very few folks have been able to break into the mainstream like David Beckham, but one man who we would include on that list is Cristiano Ronaldo. The Portuguese sensation made a name for himself at Manchester United, before making one of the biggest moves in the history of football over to Real Madrid.
His legend has continued to grow ever since, with CR7 making the Bernabeu his true home.
Now he’s with Juventus, and as he continues to rack up his millions, we can only imagine how many trips a year he’ll be taking on a private jet.
18 Roger Federer – He Deserves A Rest
Back over to everyone’s favourite sport (just go with it) – tennis. We’ve spoken about the best of the best when it comes to hitting a yellow fuzzy ball around, but there is quite literally nobody that compares to Roger Federer.
He’s the greatest of all time and it’s really that simple. The Swiss star has been re-defining what it means to be a sporting legend for well over a decade now, and he’ll continue to do so for at least the next few years.
We should treasure the time we’ve got left of seeing him on the court, but even when he retires, we imagine he’ll utilise the privileges of a private jet when he moves into his inevitable role as an ambassador.
17 Muhammad Ali – Never Forget
Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.
Muhammad Ali is, was and will always be a legend and it’s somewhat difficult to express just how serious we are when we use that title. He was the World Heavyweight Champion not only in boxing, but in the hearts of his legions of fans right up until the day he passed away.
In his later years, he obviously suffered from deteriorating health, which ensured that he flew high with the best of them in a private jet.
We quite honestly can say that if we had to fly with anyone past or present, it’d be Ali.
16 Maria Sharapova – What An Icon
For many years Maria Sharapova was the sweetheart of tennis, but unfortunately, the wheels have kind of come off as of late due to circumstances away from the court. While many fans have taken it upon themselves to ‘forgive’ her, they’ll probably still be somewhat surprised to learn that she still chooses private travel above anything else.
She’s doing all of the right things to get back to where she needs to be, although there will undoubtedly be a sour taste in the mouths of many that she gets to use a private jet whenever she pleases. Ah well, that’s life.
15 Odell Beckham Jr. – The NFL’s Finest
The National Football League, also known as the No Fun League by some, could use a superstar injecting some life into things – and that’s exactly what Odell Beckham Jr has done over the course of his time in the league. While he isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, he certainly knows how to make it into the headlines.
Of course, that means there should be no surprise whatsoever that he likes to travel in style. We’ve always had him down as a man of fine taste, and while his choice of clothing may not always represent that (we sound really old), at least he takes some cool Insta-worthy shots.
14 Sergio Garcia – A Golf Legend
While he may not be on the same kind of level as Tiger Woods in terms of success, Sergio Garcia is still valued as an important part of the history books in the world of golf. His 2017 Masters Tournament victory secured his place in the record books, and at the age of 38, he should still have at least a few good years left in him.
He can sometimes be a man of few words but either way, it’s not a shock to learn that he travels via private jet from time to time. Hell, if we had the kind of money that’s involved with being a top golfer, we’d have probably bought three of them by now.
13 Neymar – Controversial Figure
Regardless of what you think about him as a man (and plenty of people have their opinions), there’s no denying that Neymar is one of the best footballers on the face of the planet. The Brazilian was viewed as a hot commodity from a very early stage, and after stints at Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain, he’s almost certainly set for life financially.
He hasn’t been shy when it comes to letting the world know of his love for private jets, and why should he be shy? If he’s going to have this ‘supervillain’ moniker that everyone loves to attach to him, then he may as well have some fun with it.
12 David Beckham – Big Dave
David Beckham isn’t one of the best footballers that’s ever lived, but he certainly is one of the most notable. He has been able to branch out into the mainstream media more so than pretty much anyone else, and we wouldn’t say that’s an exaggeration.
Beckham is one of those individuals who you could only really hate out of jealousy, and while we can understand that to an extent, it still seems a little bit petty.
He likely only flies privately out of necessity more so than anything else, though, because it’s been well documented that he wants his children to be humble and create their own paths towards success.
11 Andy Carroll – Heading Machine
Andy Carroll is one of the lesser known athletes on this list, but that doesn’t mean he’s any less important or valuable (especially if we’re talking about how much Liverpool bought him for). Carroll is a strong, powerful forward, and he’s been able to prove that with Newcastle United, Liverpool and West Ham United thus far in his career.
While someone like Harry Kane is probably the perfect example of what the football world was expecting Carroll to be, we’d argue that he’s still turned out okay when you consider all of the variables. Plus, he’s got enough cash to afford a private jet, so he must be doing well.
10 Floyd Mayweather Jr. – Money!
The debate for ‘least surprising entry of the year’ has a new contender in the form of Floyd Mayweather Jr. We’re talking about a man who just last year was involved in the most lucrative fight in the history of combat sports against Conor McGregor.
Not only did he win, but he was also believed to have picked up a reported $300 million from the fight. Whether you believe that or not is irrelevant, though, because Money Mayweather can’t hear you over the sound of his private jet taking off.
It must be hard being that arrogant and talented in equal measure.
9 Magic Johnson – What A Man
Magic Johnson is not only one of the greatest basketball stars of his generation, but he’s also a man who has been able to overcome great adversity in his life – coming out the other side even stronger than before.
His bravery in being so open about what has happened throughout the course of his life is admirable, to say the least, and if anyone deserves to ride high on a private jet, it’s him.
Oh, and while we touched on it, this point needs to be repeated: he was a phenomenal player during his time with the Los Angeles Lakers.
8 Tiger Woods – The Comeback
Very few human beings, let alone athletes, can ever claim to have won the kind of money that Tiger Woods has. There was a point in time when he was easily considered to be the best golfer on the planet, and that was reflected in his rising celebrity.
As we all know he suffered a setback or two during his time at the top, and rightly so, but he appears to be on the right track towards really making the most of his ‘second shot’ so to speak.
As an older player, he needs to avoid the strenuous travel that may be involved in getting to tournaments, which is probably why he hops on a private jet from place to place.
7 Diego Maradona – A legend and a spender
We’ve all got our opinions on Diego Maradona, and we’re going to go out on a limb and suggest that most of them are quite similar. It’s not an exaggeration to suggest that he isn’t the nicest man in the world, as his behaviour at the World Cup demonstrated.
The Argentine legend certainly knows how to live life in style, and we mean that in as many different ways as possible. For better or worse he seems hell-bent on living the life of a 25-year-old from now until the day he takes his final breath on this Earth, and we’ll allow you to make up your own mind regarding whether or not that’s a good message to send.
6 Serena Williams – Sport’s Most Famous Mother
We’ve dubbed her sport’s most famous mother in the title, but in truth, she’s so much more than that.
Serena Williams has been at the pinnacle of women’s tennis for years and years now, and she’s showing no signs of slowing down – even in motherhood. She’s one of the best athletes of our time, regardless of gender, and after all that she’s been through and worked for, she deserves to travel in luxury.
Some would even argue that there will never be another female competitor in the world of tennis like Serena, but even if someone surpasses her one day, they’ll never replicate her stardom.
5 Rafa Nadal – The King Of Clay
We’re sticking on the theme of tennis here, which should tell you all that you need to know about just how lucrative it is. You don’t get to the top of the sport without being seriously committed to the idea of sacrificing everything you have, and Rafa Nadal has certainly done that.
That last part sounds a little bit extreme, but we’d argue that it’s more than accurate – especially for someone like Rafa, who has faced great adversity in the form of injuries throughout the course of his career. He’s still one of the best in the world today, but he needs to think about his future, which is why a jet is so much better for his health.
4 Zlatan Ibrahimovic – Zlatan Is The Man
You don’t have to like him, but you do have to appreciate his brilliance.
Few people in the world can pull off the kind of character that Zlatan Ibrahimovic portrays, and in many ways, he probably belongs in professional wrestling after his days in football are over.
The Swede is just on another level of arrogance, but a lot of people tend to gravitate towards that. They appear to find it more charming than anything else and while that seems weird, we can kind of get it.
Zlatan has worked unbelievably hard to get to where he is today, and he deserves to chill out.
3 Conor McGregor – Surprise, Surprise
From nothing to everything.
Conor McGregor went from being a nobody on the streets of Dublin, Ireland to being someone who has the world at his feet. The two-weight UFC champion has redefined what it means to be a superstar, establishing himself as the biggest name in combat sports – and it’s not even close.
He absolutely loves flying around in a private jet, and ironically enough, the fact that he had one available to him is probably the reason why the UFC 223 incident got out of hand so quickly.
Nonetheless, though, McGregor will continue to fly around the world with his Proper Twelve alongside him for many years to come.
2 Kylian Mbappe – Destined For Greatness
19-year-olds are supposed to be either in a part-time job in their local village or enjoying their first few years of university. What they aren’t supposed to be doing is scoring in the World Cup final to help your country win the single most important sporting competition on the planet.
Kylian Mbappe can retire right now and probably be set for life, but nobody wants to see that. They want to see him continue to fly around the world doing what he does best, because he’s damn good at it.
Given what he’s already been able to accomplish, who knows what could be in store for his future.
1 Khabib Nurmagomedov – He Makes You Humble
Khabib Nurmagomedov dethroned Conor McGregor at UFC 229 to retain his Lightweight Championship, and he's never going to forget that.
The Eagle is living the high life and is still on a media tour that has spread throughout every corner of the globe.
We can only imagine that he’ll continue down this path, to the point where we wouldn’t be all too surprised if we had to wait another year before seeing him inside the Octagon again.
He’s deserved that kind of a break, though.