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Large plane flying 1/2 full

Old 05-26-2019, 06:53 AM
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Default Large plane flying 1/2 full

Friend flew from Europe to Atlanta last week on the Big airbus (A380?) he said it was only 1/2 full, whole compartments empty.
Is this common?
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Old 05-26-2019, 07:00 AM
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Belly freight gives them the revenue to be profitable. On long legs Sydney- Dallas the 380 may be fuel limited and fly half full because they need the fuel instead of passenger weight.
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Old 05-26-2019, 07:05 AM
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It happens from time to time depending on time of year etc. I used to work for Virgin Atlantic in NYC and wed have 747s come in with 100 people on them and same flight next day full.
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Old 05-26-2019, 07:12 AM
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Originally Posted by chasvb1 View Post
Belly freight gives them the revenue to be profitable. On long legs Sydney- Dallas the 380 may be fuel limited and fly half full because they need the fuel instead of passenger weight.
An airline would never do that. Theyd match the aircraft to the route. If a plane didnt have the legs to fly full from point a to b theyd put an aircraft that could in its place or cancel the flight. The 380s if I remember correctly hold.some of the longest non stop flights.
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Old 05-26-2019, 07:16 AM
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The A380 platform was a colossal failure. So
much so that airbus canceled production 10 years into the product. It is an inefficient bloated platform that exceeds demand and forces many of the seats to be sold at a loss in attempt to cover expenses. Airbus misjudged the market and tried to solve a problem that doesnít exist.
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Old 05-26-2019, 07:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Fractured but whole View Post
The A380 platform was a colossal failure. So
much so that airbus canceled production 10 years into the product. It is an inefficient bloated platform that exceeds demand and forces many of the seats to be sold at a loss to cover expenses. Airbus misjudged the market and tried to solve a problem that doesnít exist.
Funny you mentioned that. I agree that the Airbus isn't nearly as efficient as the 747 family. I did see an article the other day that basically said years ago Boeing and Airbus looked at large plane design. Boeing had Airbus convinced they were going to make an 747 800x which basically would be a 380 in a 47 body with a complete upper deck Boeing walked away from the project as it didnt see it economics wise. Airbus plowed ahead. 1 of the things that killed the 380 is that unlike the 747, the cockpit is on the main deck, not the upper so therefore they cant hinge the nose to quick load freight in to a freighter version as they can with a 47 freighter. The 47 has a lot more options for freight efficiency. The 380 simply cant be a comparable freighter. Forgetting all of the changes fields have to make to accomodatebthe plane.
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Old 05-26-2019, 07:44 AM
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I once flew from Boston to Philly on a plane that had three passengers. 737 iirc. Worst service ever. The flight attendants were so busy talking to each other they forgot to even ask us if we wanted a drink.

A 50min flight on a smaller plane is no comparison to a wide body international flight but still cost money to staff fuel and land.
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Old 05-26-2019, 07:48 AM
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Coming back from India In January I was on a 777 with 60 other people. In an aircraft that can carry 380 people thatís pretty empty. Still they needed the plain in JFK and Iím sure it was full of cargo.
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Old 05-26-2019, 07:51 AM
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Earlier this month I flew from Newark to Abidjan. Maybe 50 people on the flight. Same flight was full last time. I guess different days vs time of year. Was nice really.
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Old 05-26-2019, 08:05 AM
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We missed our flight from Honolulu to LAX one time.

we were put on the red eye

There was us (4) and maybe another 4.

Not sure what aircraft but it had 3-4 seats on each side amd 7-8 in the middle.

On a 737 from Tampa to san juan there were 6 of us. 3 married couples.

It happens.
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Old 05-26-2019, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by RCL View Post
Funny you mentioned that. I agree that the Airbus isn't nearly as efficient as the 747 family. I did see an article the other day that basically said years ago Boeing and Airbus looked at large plane design. Boeing had Airbus convinced they were going to make an 747 800x which basically would be a 380 in a 47 body with a complete upper deck Boeing walked away from the project as it didnt see it economics wise. Airbus plowed ahead. 1 of the things that killed the 380 is that unlike the 747, the cockpit is on the main deck, not the upper so therefore they cant hinge the nose to quick load freight in to a freighter version as they can with a 47 freighter. The 47 has a lot more options for freight efficiency. The 380 simply cant be a comparable freighter. Forgetting all of the changes fields have to make to accomodatebthe plane.
Almost seems Airbus rushed the 380 to get it in the sky. Where as Boeing designed the 747 as a passenger/freighter from the beginning.

To make the 380 a freighter, they would have to start with a clean sheet design.

Twins have advanced so far the market for 4 holers in any configuration is very limited.
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Old 05-26-2019, 08:08 AM
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Old 05-26-2019, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Fractured but whole View Post
The A380 platform was a colossal failure.
Ever flown on one?

We flew Sydney-Auckland-Sydney in 2013 on an Emirates A-380 and it was probably the best flight I've ever taken. I had a window seat and was amazed at the low level of 'wind noise'. We had crew members from 11 different nations with a Canadian Captain. A Romanian F/A was possibly the most gorgeous woman I've ever seen and that's saying a lot since I spent 20 years in the airline biz, surrounded by F/As!

The cockpit is so wiiiiide that both pilots have their own cockpit door! I wish now that I had asked to go up there for a look-see.

I was lucky enough to pick up a brand new Boeing 737 from Boeing Field in 1987. N723ML. We flew it non-stop from Seattle to Miami. My longest flight ever. I made the fifth landing ever for that jet. They test fly it four times first.

If an idea comes up to build an all-new airliner in 2019, they must correctly predict what the market will need in the late 2020s. When the 380 was being designed, there appeared to be a market for a long haul, super-jumbo, so Airbus pressed ahead with the 380. Now, airlines want smaller, long haul airliners and many wish that the B-757 had not ceased production in 2005!

Boeing is at work on an all-new airliner, the 797!
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Old 05-26-2019, 08:34 AM
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Took a flight in a 172 yesterday and there was 2 of us. Plane was half full
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Old 05-26-2019, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Gary M View Post
Ever flown on one
No.

Not saying they arenít comfortable, great for pilots, etc.

From a business perspective they are a flop. For many years each unit was produced at a loss, and that calculation didnít include initial r&d & engineering costs to launch the program. With a total of ~250 units produced, it will go down as a multi billion dollar loser for airbus.
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Old 05-26-2019, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by bluffman2 View Post
Took a flight in a 172 yesterday and there was 2 of us. Plane was half full
What, no flying waitress?
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Old 05-26-2019, 09:23 AM
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Originally Posted by OReely View Post
What, no flying waitress?
She'd have to be petite, the 172 isn't exactly a heavy lifter. Probably too small for bluffmans tastes!
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Old 05-26-2019, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Gary M View Post
When the 380 was being designed, there appeared to be a market for a long haul, super-jumbo, so Airbus pressed ahead with the 380.
Many would argue that the Ego of the person running Airbus was the only thing that saw a market for a long haul super-jumbo that was less efficient per passenger mile than the Boeing 777 at a higher operating and overhead cost and because of its mass and wingspan, it needed airport redesigns most everywhere it flew, further limiting its route map.
Had Airbus asked the simple question of its airlines' passengers: would you rather fly direct on a smaller plane or make stops to fly on a big plane from major hubs (and for more money), they would have realized the A380 was doomed to be a commercial failure.
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Old 05-26-2019, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by LI32 View Post
Many would argue that the Ego of the person running Airbus was the only thing that saw a market for a long haul super-jumbo that was less efficient per passenger mile than the Boeing 777 at a higher operating and overhead cost and because of its mass and wingspan, it needed airport redesigns most everywhere it flew, further limiting its route map.
Had Airbus asked the simple question of its airlines' passengers: would you rather fly direct on a smaller plane or make stops to fly on a big plane from major hubs (and for more money), they would have realized the A380 was doomed to be a commercial failure.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/peterco...w-busted-a380/

Heres that link I saw. Basically says that Boeing looked at the future and saw that airlines were starting towards point a to b routes as opposed to the hub and spoke. Airbus thought there was a market. Had the roles been reversed, I think things may have been different as the 47 was a seasoned platform and the 47x didnt need any special needs when going into airports. She would have fit with no real updates that the 380 required.
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Old 05-26-2019, 12:14 PM
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If I remember correctly, Boing did not cancel their large airlines project out of plain wisdom, but it was the result of multiple failures along the initial design process and the cancelation came at a time when both Boeign and Airbus (which was far advanced in the the A380) realized the large planes were not a good idea.

There is a documentary on youtube that covers the story.
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