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Factory Tours, Airbus Or Boeing?  
User currently offlineManu From Canada, joined Dec 2004, 406 posts, RR: 6
Posted (11 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 5232 times:

I'm going to be close to both Toulouse and Seattle in the next month, and am curious if it is worth the 100-200km detour for each of these locations to see the aircraft manufacturing lines? I'm not even sure if it is possible! I'd love to see 747's being built, as well as the A380 first hand. But my time (and money) are limited for both places.

I'll be in Nice, FR in early Feb., so not too far from Airbus. I'll be in Victoria, BC just after Christmas and before New Years. Anyone have some incite into both facilities and whether tours can be provided/worthwhile? Oh, I assume Airbus would do a tour in English too... My French, you might say, is crap.


12 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineUnited_Fan From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 7687 posts, RR: 6
Reply 1, posted (11 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 5226 times:

Well,I've taken the Boeing tour 4 times. I was well worth the $5 they charge - I spent way more than that at the gift shop,there! They take you up to a balcont overseeing the 747 line . Then they take you in a Greyhound-type bus ride across the highway to see the paint hanger and widebodies awaiting delivery.

I don't know about the Airbus tour,though.

Champagne For My Real Friends,and Real Pain For My Sham Friends
User currently offlineRoseFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 11166 posts, RR: 52
Reply 2, posted (11 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 5162 times:

The Boeing tour in Everett is quite fun, but I don't know their holiday hours. They might not have them while you are there, so it is a good idea to check.


You get to see the 744 production line from overhead on a platform. Unfortunately it hasn't been very exciting lately since so few 744s are being produced. It was a lot better when Boeing was doing full scale production in the 90s. You also go on a bus to see the flight line of all of the freshly painted widebodies waiting for delivery. It is a fun thing to do, and the Museum of Flight restoration center is a fun thing to do up there as well, and it is free. You can see the work they are doing on the Comet and other cool stuff. Unfortunately it can be kind of difficult to get from Victoria to Everett. Without a car it would be next to impossible. Taking the Victoria Clipper or Kenmore Air to Seattle is expensive, and there is little transportation available to Paine Field, but if you try hard enough and have some time it can be done on Metro bus service.

If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
User currently offlineBA380 From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 1466 posts, RR: 8
Reply 3, posted (11 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 5132 times:

can you do an Airbus tour?

cabin crew: doors to automatic and cross-check...
User currently offlineDAirbus From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 596 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (11 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 5121 times:
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A company called Taxiway offers tours at Toulouse.



"I love mankind. It's people I can't stand." - Charles Shultz
User currently offlinePosti From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 108 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (11 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 5111 times:

I went on an Airbus tour in March of 2003, and it was amazing. We drove around the facility in a bus and got out at certain spots to check out the different stages in the assembly process. The best part is when we were on a catwalk above the A330 assembly floor, there must have 5 or 6 planes at different stages of construction. I've never been to Seattle so I have nothing to compare it to, but an Airbus tour is definitely worth a trip. Also, Toulouse is a nice city, good food.

User currently offlineAlitaliaMD11 From Spain, joined Dec 2003, 4068 posts, RR: 12
Reply 6, posted (11 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 5091 times:


I have done airbus twice, and they are awsome!! You get such good views of the planes, unfortunatley, they dont let you take photos.

I think that the A380 plant will be added to the tour??

Yes, I believe that Taxiway is the only tour company that does airbus.

Does airbus have a tour at there hamburg plant?

They do tours in english.

You can take the train from Nice to TLS. I drove from TLS to Nimes which is about four hours, Nimes is about two hours away from Nice.

Good Luck!

No Vueling No Party
User currently offlinePosti From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 108 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (11 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 4937 times:

On our tour the guide spoke in English, but his English, to quote Manu, was crap. It's a good thing a member of the group was from France so she could translate as our French was terrible.

User currently offlineSpringbok747 From Australia, joined Nov 2004, 4387 posts, RR: 9
Reply 8, posted (11 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 4917 times:

I've been on the Boeing tour about 6 times...but I got in free because my uncle is a Boeing employee Big grin

It was awesome, and I thoroughly enjoyed it, although I spent the last 3 tours only in the gift shop!

I haven't been on the Airbus tour, so I don't know about that. I would love to go on that tour also someday.

אני תומך בישראל
User currently offlineBuckieboy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (11 years 5 months 2 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 4750 times:

I did the Boeing one, which for trivia fans (at the time) was the largest covered building in the world, (I think by volume, if not by area). I also thoroughly enjoyed the Museam of Flight which is in US terms quite close to Everett. Of course, no trip to the area should miss a visit to Jimi Hendrix's grave.

Thanks for the post which has reminded me to go to Toulouse as it is relatively close to where I live.


CTA (Switzerland)">BB

User currently offlineLtbewr From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13860 posts, RR: 17
Reply 10, posted (11 years 5 months 2 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 4737 times:

One tip I recommend and used for the Boeing Tour I did back in August, it to get their by 8:30 when they open the ticket windows. If you are lucky, you may be able to get one of the morning tours, which start at 9:00. The area where you get the tickets also is a small museum about Boeing's history. It is an amazing experience. The tours last about 2 hours if I am correct and you better bring your walking shoes. Everett is about 40km/25 miles north of downtown Seattle. There may be tour groups available from downtown Seattle as well that include the Factory Tour. There are several moderate priced motels in the Everett area. By the way, you cannot have your cell phone or any cameras with you when on the Boeing tour.
I would also recommend going to the Museum of Flight, which is about 12 km/8 miles south of downtown Seattle. Go to their website for further info (I think it is www.museumofflight.org). The museum is part of Boeing/King County Field, and is where final prep/delivery of 737 & 757 models is done, and where several facilities of Boeing are located. It too is well worth the visit. If you have a car, you could what I did, do both the Factory tour and the Museum in the same day.

User currently offlineMHG From Germany, joined Dec 2004, 875 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (11 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 4607 times:

There are also Airbus-tours at HAMBURG!
I´ve been there once. I think it´s nice but i don´t know how much they charge as it was an organized tour by an aviation club...
As far as i know these tours are only mo-fr and exceptionally for groups on sa possible...

I miss the sound of rolls royce darts and speys
User currently offlineGaut From Belgium, joined Dec 2001, 344 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (11 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 4577 times:

I've done both and enjoyed both!!!

If I was you I would go to Airbus to see the A380!!!!
Don't forget to book your tour.

Whatever you chose, enjoy your tour!


«Horum omnium fortissimi sunt Belgae.»
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