Concorde - Is British Airways crazy?

Oct 20th, 2003, 11:46 AM
  #1  
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Concorde - Is British Airways crazy?

In short, yes.

Why? Wellbr />
Air France and British Airways are the only airlines that have Concordes.

In the mid 70s the Concorde's first passenger flights were introduced. Since I was a few years old at this time I don not remember how the Concorde's introduction was advertised by AF and BA. Do some of you remember the Concorde's introduction? How was this advertised by AF and BA?

In April 2003 both airlines announced that the Concorde would be retired. AF queitly retired the Concorde in May, 2003. BA appears to be begging for media attention on this subject. I'm sure BA would like media coverage similar to the death of Princess Diana, or the events of September 11. Here are some of the things BA is doing that AF has not done:-
justshootme is offline  
Oct 20th, 2003, 12:00 PM
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That post was sent too early, getting back to what I was writing-

-BA is taking the Concorde for all major cities in the UK, and, they are selling tickets for these flights, ie a London - Edinburgh/Cardiff/Manachester, etc. - London ticket.

-BA wants the take off and landing of the final flight broadcast worldwide on live television.

-BA is selling Concorde tickets on ebay (at least the proceeds go to charity)

-BA has exesive Concorde information on their website.

-BA is selling Concorde merchandise, in the past Concorde merchandise was never sold and was only given to Concorde passengers as a gift.

-BA will have a retirement ceremony after the last flight.

-BA is using the Concorde to make as much money as possible.

I understand that the Concorde is supersonic and not subsonic, but, is all this pomp and ceremony necessary? If it is - just shoot me.

FYI: I have travelled on the Concorde.
justshootme is offline  
Oct 20th, 2003, 12:15 PM
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The British invented pomp and ceremony.I would expect nothing less than a blowout takedown.Why not..
BeachBoi is offline  
Oct 20th, 2003, 12:24 PM
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This is the only way they can make $$$$$ on that tired old bird. All the power to them.

For what it's worth, those planes were obsolete the day they rolled off the platform.
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Oct 20th, 2003, 03:29 PM
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kkj
 
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So... Why not???

By the way this post should probably be on the airlines section.
kkj is offline  
Oct 20th, 2003, 03:31 PM
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Dan
 
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Years from now, the last carrier to use the obsolete Boeing 747 will do exactly the same thing. They will have "send off" parties in every airport they can!
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Oct 20th, 2003, 05:46 PM
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Yes, and they used to give us old-timers a gold watch when we retired; now you just get "terminated" like Gray Davis. The difference is there is no young hot-shot to take Concorde's place, just boring more fuel efficient models. The retirement of Concorde without a new, improved replacement that is at least as good and fast is, in its own way, one of the biggest steps backward I have witnessed in my lifetime. Rich or not, you simply cannot travel at supersonic speed anymore (military aside). Pardon me while I go dust off my slide rule.
Binthair is offline  
Oct 20th, 2003, 11:23 PM
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Well I'd say its up to British Airways. Seems like its having an effect here in UK. People here do feel quite emotional about the plane - if you saw the Queens jubilee celebrations and watched Concorde fly over the Mall - I defy you not to have a lump in your throat. After saying all that. Yes it is supersonic and some of the technology used is only now being incorporated on to other planes. Anyhow, I for one will miss it - never in my lifetime will I see the like again.
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Oct 21st, 2003, 04:44 AM
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I had only one trip on the Concorde to Paris. A thrilling sensation that could not overcome the sardine can feel to the plane. We didn't fly this way again. Could do first class on a jumbo for less than the Concorde as I remember.

Brits love big productions, why should this be different? It is definitely the end of an era. More power to BA, they need some thunder to counteract Virgin's stunts. LMF
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Oct 21st, 2003, 05:05 AM
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Binthair makes a great point...with all the incredible technology available nowadays, and travelers' penchant for getting there FASTER, I wonder why we don't have a luxury improved model to replace the Concorde? Richard Branson are you listening???
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Oct 21st, 2003, 05:29 AM
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How are Eddy and Patsy going to go shopping in NYC now?
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Oct 21st, 2003, 06:46 AM
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You cannot use a super sonic transport until technology solves the fuel issue. Even the lumbering 747 is efficient by comparison, being able to haul a passenger for only 1/16th the fuel Concorde uses on a per mile basis. Lots of new planes coming, including the 7E7 from Boeing, but nothing along the lines of Concorde, Russian Concordsky (stolen plans!) or the former SST demonstration plane ended by the US in the 70s.
 
Oct 21st, 2003, 03:18 PM
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This post is very timely for me. I have recently flown on the Concorde. I just returned home last week.

I agree British Airways is making a big fuss over the whole thing.

Before leaving the US I had contacted BA to ask about the seating plan on the plane. I was in row 12 and have seen two different seating charts, one with row 12 in the first cabin the other with row 12 in the second cabin. Nobody at BA could answer my question. You'd think they would know the answer after all the fuss they are making.

During the flight it was announced several thime that the plane would retire. Heck lets have a Concorde funeral after the flight. Kleenex anyone? Did BA want us to leave crying?
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Oct 21st, 2003, 04:54 PM
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KE1TH, that is a very good question and clearly BA have not fully considered the consequences of their action!
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Oct 21st, 2003, 05:57 PM
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jor
 
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Britain is the Faded Glory and the Concorde is the official end of their empire. Boo Hoo Britain!!! LOL
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Oct 21st, 2003, 06:34 PM
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Actually, jor isn't too far off from the psychology behind the celebration. Britain, after all, almost took the lead in civil aviation with the first commercial jetliner, the DeHavilland Comet. And they watched their hopes dashed by design flaws that brought down several Comets and made jet travel seem unsafe. By the time they made the Comet safe to fly, Boeing had its 707 flying and Douglas' DC-8 was ready to hit the skies. Europe was never able to put out a competitive jetliner (until the Airbus consortium).

With Concorde, the British had something the Americans gave up on (they wisely decided it was economically not viable)-- although they had to get help from France's Sud Aviation/Aérospatiale to do it. Economics have done it in, and its technology became obsolete quickly, but it still makes Britain special, and they'll shout it from the rooftops. After Concorde is retired, what special things will they have left?
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Oct 25th, 2003, 06:04 AM
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OP (and others) - 2 short sentences. Sour grapes. No imagination.

The Concorde (on which I have never flown but would have loved to) was so far ahead of its time. It was a European project. None were sold overseas. Why? Americans couldn't handle the fact that Europe had made this highly advanced plane. Sonic boom was the excuse. I agree the plane was fuel inefficient, and therefore environmentally unfriendly. But if more had been made, there would have been money for further resabeghere bn menir.slee f
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Oct 25th, 2003, 06:08 AM
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OP (and others) - 2 short sentences. Sour grapes. No imagination.

The Concorde (on which I have never flown but would have loved to) was so far ahead of its time. It was a European project. None were sold overseas. Why? Americans couldn't handle the fact that Europe had made this highly advanced plane. Sonic boom was the excuse. I agree the plane was fuel inefficient, and therefore environmentally unfriendly. But if more had been made, there would have been money for further research.
As it was, you shut it out. And a revolutionary concept ended in a dead end. And it was a beautiful thing.
Well done USA.
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Oct 25th, 2003, 01:12 PM
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It was out of my price range, but several friends and clients of mine flew the Concorde on occasion. One couple did it once and liked saving the time, but never did it again. They chose instead to fly first class on a regular airline (going to Europe several times per year)-- taking about two hours longer I guess from Boston or New York to London and having "much greater comfort" at the same price. Another client flew Concorde once and hated it -- the air conditioning didn't work, they lost two engines and had to be bussed to London from Wales or somewhere. The also said for the same price they much preferred flying first class on a regular airline. I understand the idea that "time is money" for some people, but for leisure travelers, the extra luxury of a first class seat seemed to be more realistic that the speed of the Concorde.

Several other people I know flew Concorde as part of a package with QEII crossings, but none of them thought it was wonderful. Again I heard about the rather cramped seats in comparison to first class or even business class on other airlines. To them it was a novelty, something that was fun to do once, but not a preferred way to travel.

I find it hard to believe that Americans chose not to buy Concordes because it wasn't an American thing -- that's kind of a stretch. Is that why those same people buy BMWs, Mercedes, and Rolls Royces? Or why they buy other foreign made planes and engines? I think there were other reasons -- like those I've just mentioned.
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