JGPH1A From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 2, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 4075 times:
I would agree that SV should have downgraded to smaller equipment for most European routes AGES ago - but perhaps they are stuck in a nostalgic L1011 era, when they had big luxurious widebodies flying absolutely everywhere during the oil boom, and money was no object.
They fly to NCE weekly with a 777 - I don't know how well the flight does though. It doesn't connect very well to anywhere via RUH, so one asks oneself really, is there any point ?
BA From United States of America, joined May 2000, 11135 posts, RR: 61 Reply 9, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 3705 times:
The Royal Family don't typically fly on Saudia...they have their own fleet.
There are over 2000 Royal Family members. Only a select few have their own VIP planes operated by Saudi Arabian.
Saudi Arabian uses its 777s on domestic routes and on Middle East routes as well.
When I look at routes such as Jeddah - Beirut, Riyadh - Beirut, Jeddah - Damascus, Riyadh - Damascus, Jeddah - Amman, Riyadh - Amman, Jeddah -Cairo, Riyadh - Cairo, Dammam - Cairo, etc. flights are always full in all classes just a few days before the day's flight.
People in the Middle East are used to flying on routes of low frequencies and getting on larger aircraft.
It's not like in the west where routes are served at high frequencies and smaller aircraft for convenience purposes and connections.
Emirates, Qatar Airways, Gulf Air all do the same also to a certain extent. Their difference though is they focus on connections through their hubs, so they typically operate more frequencies.
Saudi Arabian does not market themselves for connections. They simply cater the Saudi market.
Speaking of Nice though, Emirates flies 773s there via Rome.
"Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need." - Khalil Gibran
Babybus From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2003, 3512 posts, RR: 6 Reply 10, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 3662 times:
Saudia is a great airline. It is also one of the world's worst. It all depends on which route you are travelling and the status that destination holds for the Saudis. IE: Flying to SIN or India isn't a nice experience but flying to LHR, JFK, KUL and a few others the service is really quite good.
Unlike the West, the Saudi public do not normally book their travel in advance. It is quite normal to decide your family holiday destination that morning! All flts tend to be heavily overbooked as they change their plans at the last minute too.
The saudis like space when they travel and the 777 gives them that. Like any airline flts during the week have lower loads and their weekend flts are pretty much full. Trying to get a flt from Europe to RUH or JED on a Thu or Fri (their weekend) is near impossible.
Using a 777 to Europe is not a waste. The way they travel demands an aircraft like the 777.
and with that..cabin crew, seats for landing please.
BG001 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 52 posts, RR: 0 Reply 11, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 3616 times:
Saudi Arabian doesn't have a lot of options too. Do you think operating 744, 743 or 741 would be the cheaper way?
you are absolutely right...except for a few A300..B777s are the smallest widebodied and newest aircraft in their pax fleet. at the same time..none of their europen loads justifies flying 777s. not even LHR. Most of the time they go out of RUH or JED with less than 100 on board.
Saudia is a great airline. It is also one of the world's worst. It all depends on which route you are travelling and the status that destination holds for the Saudis.
110% right. I took their 744 flight out of JFK to JED and then RUH to JFK...great experience , great service...then 741 flight to and from DAC...oh man....I PROMISED THAT I WOULD RATHER WALK THAN TAKING SV FLIGHTS TO DAC.
Swissgabe From Switzerland, joined Jan 2000, 5265 posts, RR: 37 Reply 13, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 3562 times:
I flew SV on following sectors:
GVA-JED on 772
JED-BKK on 744
DAC-RUH on 743
RUH-JED-ATH-MXP on M90
all flights where ok. food was good, crew was nice and friendly and no bad experience. except the 12hrs layover in RUH. Even the DAC-RUH flight on the 743 was ok, must be because we got upgraded to F class !
Smooth as silk - Royal Orchid Service /// Suid-Afrikaanse Lugdiens - Springbok
Hz747300 From Hong Kong, joined Mar 2004, 1597 posts, RR: 0 Reply 14, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 3522 times:
Saudia is not run along business lines, but like most government-owned entities, it's used for political patronage.
Saudia bought the 777s (and MD-11s, 744s, MD-90s) under political pressure from the US. In reality, it didn't need that many aircraft, nor did they have money to pay them.
And I believe the royal family can fly on Saudia for free, thus explain flights to Nice, Geneva, etc.
Read the book, "Birds of Prey". Both the US Government and the European Governments were pushing hard for the Saudia fleet renewal deal. Saudi Arabian (then DBA as Saudia) did not buy more than they need, nor they pressured. Airbus and Boeing were bending over backwards to win that deal.
And your comment about "not having the money to pay them" does not even past the laugh test.
There has been a shift in the Western traffic to the Kingdom. Most Westerners fly Western airlines to the Kingdom now (for liquor, not having wear the abaya, and nudity on the PTVs), whereas before that was not the case. First, the the two stop flights are not convenient, and there is enough service from at least one Euro country per day to satisfy the demand. Saudi Arabian probably flies the 777s to Europe because the 744s make no sense, and the MD90s do not necessarily have the range. Saudi Arabian could have been well-served with an aircraft in the A332/767 class for those routes, they chose not to buy them.
Fd728 From Germany, joined Jan 2004, 135 posts, RR: 0 Reply 16, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 3360 times:
Well they obviously need something smaller than the Triple 7 in their fleet to fill the gap and to replace the A306s with those well serving but not really economical JT9Ds. What about a potential 7E7 customer? Or is it Airbus' turn now? Maybe they hop on the Qatar train to start a competition between the A350 and the 7E7. I've seen Saudi be more progressive in recent months with lots of commercials on CNN and presenting a "New World of Choices". Maybe they are more keen on competing with those growing neighbor airlines such as Emirates and Qatar now.
However, I read here on a.net that a replacement being sought for the last 732s is more imminent. Curious on how fast they decide when to place an order.
Alespesl From Czech Republic, joined Jan 2004, 579 posts, RR: 2 Reply 17, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 3298 times:
SV flew this summer between PRG and JED & RUH on 777. The flight continued from PRG to FRA, however they did not sell tickets for PRG-FRA sector. That would be very nice to fly on B777 from PRG to FRA.
Next Flight: Aug 17 VIE-LJU, Aug 18 LJU-VIE, Aug 19 DRS-DUS-GWT
L410Turbolet From Czech Republic, joined May 2004, 5393 posts, RR: 19 Reply 18, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 3279 times:
I remember someone on a.net asking about interesting intra-European flights onboard widebodies. I was recommending him FRA-PRG-FRA with Saudia. It was offered for 170-190 EUR on , btw a really good webpage selling last minute deals for scheduled flights.
Andrewuber From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 2528 posts, RR: 44 Reply 19, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 3109 times:
I lived in Dubai for two years, and used to fly to Doha for my visa run. EK usually operates the A330 on that route, but twice a week (or at least it was twice a week back in 2001 / 2002), those flights were on 777-200's. It's amazing to go on a 20 minute flight in a 777. I used to take a book with me and leave it at my seat, go through the Doha terminal and get back into the same seat for the return flight.
Of all my visa flights, most were on 777's (I'd go specifically on the days they'd operate the 777), some were on A330's, and I even flew on their old A-310 one night. All were pleasant flights. Most were full, and Dubai made TONS of money in the process.
Alespesl From Czech Republic, joined Jan 2004, 579 posts, RR: 2 Reply 20, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 3025 times:
Can you tell me where can you buy such flights? I might have had that website, but since i formatted my disk, i have lost everthing. If you have it, please send it to me. If you know any other places where to buy good tickets, send them as well.
Next Flight: Aug 17 VIE-LJU, Aug 18 LJU-VIE, Aug 19 DRS-DUS-GWT
EK345 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 162 posts, RR: 0 Reply 23, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 2310 times:
I am sure that the professionals whose job it is to accurately forecast capacity needs know what they are doing and this is why Saudi Arabian decided to go with 772s for its European routes. These flights have been booked solid especially since more Arabs have now started to avoid the US and focus their leisure and money on Europe and Southeast Asia.
I suppose you would use this same argument for the 744 short regional flights in places like Japan?
EK345 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 162 posts, RR: 0 Reply 24, posted (8 years 6 months 3 weeks ago) and read 2297 times:
Ironically in another thread the shortest widebody flights are also being discussed. Maybe we should be talking about some of the routes mentioned there instead of the 5+ hr full load flights on the Saudi Arabian 772s to Europe.