American Carriers with a380's

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by merice107, Dec 21, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. merice107

    merice107 Silver Member

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    Why don't any american carriers have a380 orders? Are they (the carriers) not as financially sound? Is there no need because of routes/demand? Do they prefer to order from Boeing (but then why no 747-8)?

    I figure there are some airline logistics experts here who probably know a lot about this topic. I'd love to hear your thoughts.
     
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  2. LETTERBOY
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    LETTERBOY Gold Member

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    The number of routes that would require an A380 are too small to justify the cost for most US-flagged carriers.You're not going to spend the money on an A380 if it only makes sense to fly it on a handful of routes.
     
  3. AUSsie

    AUSsie Silver Member

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    This. It is expensive for an airline to have a different type of plane, due to the fixed costs associated with training pilots and maintenance workers, costs of sparing and maintenance facilities, etc. If they can't amortize the cost across a large number of planes (which must collectively generate more revenue than the option of using a plane type already in the fleet), they're not going to do it.
     
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  4. AUSsie

    AUSsie Silver Member

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    (Besides, would you really want to fly on United's version of A380 first class over Lufthansa's?)
     
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  5. 7Continents
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    7Continents Silver Member

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    US carriers prefer multiple departures. That's an important reason the big guy with wings doesn't live in the US.
     
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  6. guberif

    guberif Silver Member

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    I think you'll see UA and DL possibly considering the 747-8i, but not the A380. It's just too big and specialized for their needs. However, I may even be wrong on the 8i; the 77W makes a pretty compelling business case, as would a 777X.
     
  7. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    77W & A350 seem to be the largest planes that US carriers have ordered.

    the 777x folding wing concept seems interesting ...
     
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  8. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    The A380 works well in markets where limited frequencies and limited hubs can effectively funnel large numbers of passengers on to the same plane. US carriers have multiple hubs and choose multiple frequencies for passenger convenience.
     
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  9. LETTERBOY
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    LETTERBOY Gold Member

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    I think the only way an A380 would make sense for a US-flagged carrier would be if they wanted to drastically increase passenger traffic into a slot-controlled airport like LHR, but even then I think it would be a stretch.
     
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  10. autolycus

    autolycus Gold Member

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    I think someone really needs to get the A380 into highly slot-restricted Reagan/Washington National. It'd be a stroke of Howard Hughes level genius. And imagine the terror that could be experienced by all the passengers on THAT approach as the incredibly long wing-tips dragged into the Potomac during one of the hard banks required to abate noise in Alexandria and Arlington!
     
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  11. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    That is also why few US airlines made heavy commitments to B747. Northwest, PanAm, TWA all had deep commitments to long haul slot-constrained destinations. None of their successors are seeking equally high-capacity aircraft to replace their aging 744's. The B748 really does not deliver a compelling advantage, as the non-freight order book shows. The success of the B77W, A350-1000 and eager anticipation for the new 777 versions soon to be launched suggest 300 seats or a bit more is the optimal level for US carriers, at least now.

    It will be interesting to see what happens as runway capacity begins to constrain more and more airports. I think it is a good longer term bet that the A380 and B77X will be very successful. Emirates alone promises a 100 airplane order for the B777X. IMO nearly all the Boeing committed current B744 operators are rooting for the B777X. Boeing IMO wisely, is holding off until the can really make a serious technological leap to compete with both the A350-1000 and the A380. That new aircraft will be worth waiting for. Thankfully Boeing did not try to do a B373MAX in the class, just made a passable interim solution for a few players in the B748. That, too, made sense for them, but there are no illusions that it is anything otehr than a stopgap.
     
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  12. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    I wonder if the 777x will be called a 777-4/5/6/7/8/9 or 797.

    Also what happens after that? 7107 ? :
     
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  13. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    The real challenge might be to get it back out ;)
     
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  14. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Really?

    I think that the B77X will be an interesting option but, depending on how quickly they can get it to market there may be some erosion of 777 sales because of the pending new type. The A380 doesn't appear today to be a very successful aircraft from the view of profits to Airbus. Recent estimates suggest that the program will only become profitable after 400+ frames are delivered and only ~250 firm orders exist. Yeah, there will likely be more eventually but it is not at all clear that it will be very successful.
     
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  15. boondr

    boondr Gold Member

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    Point of note: the hard banks north of DCA on departure and arrival depending on operation have more to do with the proximity of the north end of the primary runway 1/19 to restricted area P56(White House/Nat. Mall/Capitol) than it does noise abatement. Other quirky rules about DCA are affected by noise abatement but not the turns.
     
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  16. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    you never know ... after all when the other Royalty's & Billionaires of the world see Price Alwaleed's A380, they might order their own. :rolleyes:
     
  17. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    The 777X really is not now positioned to be a replacement for existing 777 but as a replacement of the B744. We obviously must wait and see, but taht is where EK wants it, above the 77W below the A380, and they are a huge buyer.

    The success of the A380 in marginal financial terms is assured, but in amortization of the enormous development costs and industrial infrastructure it is less so. Much of the development and infrastructure has paved the way for the A350 though so...we'll probably not know this one for a decade or more. In market terms it is already outperforming expectations, according to EK, and increasing slot constraints will drive bigger aircraft in some places. BTW, I am not suggesting that making the original decision was wise, it probably was not.

    Just like the Concorde, I loved the aircraft despite the unmitigated commercial disaster that it was until BA and AF managed to get the aircraft written off, then they both made money.
     
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  18. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    The 777X won't have the capacity of the 744. The 748 is the replacement for that type. The 777X will offer improvements to the 777 line in the same way the 787 improved the 767 line. Massively more efficient and a solid replacement but not a change to the product spacing IMO.

    As to the financial success of the A380, I agree that it will take some time to know for sure. That it performs well operationally doesn't make it a success in absolute terms.
     
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  19. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    "The 407-passenger, 76.48m (250ft 11in) long 777-9X, a four-frame stretch of the 777-300ER, would likely lead the new family. It would be powered by two General Electric GE9X engines, each providing 99,500lb of thrust, and have a maximum take-off weight (MTOW) of 344t (759,000lb)."
    http://www.flightglobal.com/Features/Boeing-777-special/777X/

    Of course it is not launched, but at 407 seats the 9X would essential eliminate the 748, though the latter still has 60 more seats, but much higher operating costs. No matter how much it is said the 748 is not a successor for the 744, but a stopgap against further Airbus encroachment. The extensions of the 777X will certainly be the permanent replacements.

    On the A380 I know we agree, even though we're trying to make it an argument, we have no real way to do it. Factually I think it will end out successful only if major global airports such as LHR, DXB, NRT and others just below like GRU, JFK, LAX etc do not open additional capacity somehow. There are no viable large scale alternatives to the first three given their hub roles and satellites are not really solving their issues. The latter three, examples only, are capacity constrained with flawed substitutes. Should taht continue to be there case there will be probably 30-40 high density longhaul routes logical for these aircraft. To the extent that such a scenario (BTW not mine but John Leahy's) develops we'll see a good many Boeing 9X's, probably mostly at US carriers and A380's probably mostly at international ones.

    There is still the strong possibility of a shorter-range high density version of one or both of those aircraft, something taht has been discussed with several carriers. I'd certainly not care to be a passenger on one. Trains are the logical competitor, but compare the capital costs and infrastructure challenges. Will that market develop? I hope not.
     
  20. autolycus

    autolycus Gold Member

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    Good to know. Thanks for the correction. It's always more fun to blame NIMBYism than the real culprit, but it is best not to blame NIMBY's unfairly.
     
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  21. TheBOSman

    TheBOSman Silver Member

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    Just as a quick note, DXB has quite the large scale alternative in DWC. LHR continues to be seemingly the main driving force for A380 ops for non-EK carriers. Most other routes seem to be routes where the prestige of F is valuable. It will be interesting to see exactly where BA sends their A380s, since they could send them (in theory) anywhere in the world from LHR.
     
  22. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Well, it is "NIMBY" still. The difference is that the "M" is POTUS. ;)
     
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  23. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    My inclusion of DXB is based solely on the Tim Clark statement a few weeks ago that DXB would be nearing long term movement limits within the next five years. Odd since DXB was not a major airport a decade ago, but movement counts suggest he was not far off.

    Sent from my iPad using milepoint
     
  24. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    True!

    Sent from my iPad using milepoint
     
  25. jfhscott
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    jfhscott Silver Member

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    A bit OT, but I do love that approach with a left window seat. I've likely done it over a hundred times and it never gets old.
     
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