Have You Taken a Ride on the A380?

Old Mar 28th, 2007, 10:34 AM
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Have You Taken a Ride on the A380?

We had an editor take a look around Airbus's latest jumbo jet. I thought I'd pass the link along to the Airline forum folks as I know it has come up before.

Old Mar 28th, 2007, 01:49 PM
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Thanks. Pretty interesting and impressive - but certainly not expecting big improvements in coach. Guess time will tell how much of a niche this plane will fill.
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Old Mar 28th, 2007, 07:01 PM
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thanks, turnstile! saw this link in my enews from fodors today. interesting to note how much more head room there'll be.
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Old Mar 29th, 2007, 08:50 AM
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Not yet TT. I wonder how may FFmiles it's going to take for upper class? Would like to try it on my next African adventure.
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Old Apr 4th, 2007, 12:25 PM
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I wish I had gotten to take a look around the plane - it looks awesome to me. I saw this blog run by Lufthansa employees also has some cool video of the plan - inside and landing, its worth checking out if you're into the A380.
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Old Apr 5th, 2007, 08:46 PM
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Looks like the Boeing 787 is just around the corner to give the A380 a run for the $$$$.
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Old Apr 5th, 2007, 10:42 PM
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I find myself wondering exactly what the A380 is for? The 747 has declined in use as a passenger aircraft as competition and changes in routing strategy among airlines have favored a larger number of smaller aircraft (which creates a lot more pollution and wastes a lot more fuel, but that's a different issue). Since the market for the passenger versions of the 747 has largely dried up, who is going to buy all the new A380s?
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Old Apr 6th, 2007, 02:47 AM
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I think those who see little market for the A380 may be viewing things too much from a U.S. perspective. Where there are a large number of poeple who want to fly long distances between very large cities, a single flight with attractive departure and arrival times may be better than a range of flights, which either arrive or depart in the middle of the night.

Airports like Heathrow are already at capacity, and you can only increase the number of passengers by flying larger planes, not by having more flights.
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Old Apr 6th, 2007, 05:32 AM
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Then why has the nearest competitor, the 747, become such a rare sight in most of the world?

There are some niche markets right now in which this size of aircraft is still popular. However, it's nothing like it used to be. There aren't really any specific technical reasons behind this; it's just that the current strategy of most airlines and other non-technical factors tend to favor a large number of small planes rather than a small number of large planes (no matter how much it damages the environment). Aircraft like the 737 or A320 continue to sell well.
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Old Apr 6th, 2007, 05:37 AM
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Exactly, seat counts is not the most important to airline economics. That's why so many airlines have replaced their 747s with 777-300s only many heavy routes, including those into congested airports like NRT, LHR and JFK.

Remember again that the A380 has only about the same operating cost per passenger as the 773; while the 787 and the future A350XWB will be significantly more efficient with newer engine designs and composite material.

And the 747-8, a stop-gap product, is almost matching the A380 on that too.
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Old Apr 6th, 2007, 05:50 AM
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To add to Chartley's comments, a lot of long-haul routes do not necessarily lend themselves to more frequent schedules. The airlines which have purchased the A380 intend to use them on these routes between Europe, Mid East, Asia, South Pacific, and US. The theory is that it's more economical to fly one plane with 500+ pax than two with 250+. These planes are generally not intended for routes where frequency is a prime consideration. This is one of the reasons A380 hasn't been ordered by any US airline. I think it's a difference in philosophy and views as to what works best for a particular carrier's routes.
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Old Apr 12th, 2007, 06:02 AM
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I agree, and if its cheaper for the airlines, the companies that pick up the A380 should be able to cut fairs and become more competitive too. Lufthansa just flew one to the US a little while - to cities including Washington DC and NYC, I think they could get a lot of good business flying from those cities to Europe.
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Old Apr 12th, 2007, 06:50 AM
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If the airlines that purchase the Airbus A380 keep the seating 3 x 4 x 3 in coach and the airlines that purchase the Dreamliner add another row of seats, the Airbus would be my choice.
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