Drerx7 From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 4965 posts, RR: 8 Reply 1, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 9225 times:
This topic surfaced last week--a search may be in order next time; but in short today's market-particularly AA's route network, an aircraft larger than the 777 is not required. No demand is present on the routes AA flies for a 747.
Starrion From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 1118 posts, RR: 2 Reply 6, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 9125 times:
"This topic has been discussed for YEARS!!!!!!!!!!!!"
And it's easy to understand why. People who aren't familiar with the industry but love airplanes look at the 747 and soon the A380 and wonder why every big airline doesn't have them. If an airline has 100% occupancy on a 772ER for two months, people flying those full flights will naturally think "Hey! If they had a 747 they could fit more people on this flight!" Not realizing that the rest of the year the route has 80% occupancy which is still profitable for a 772ER but a real money-loser for a 747. Plus if the demand is really high, AA can assign an additional 772ER. Once the route demand drops, especially if it is seasonal, the additonal aircraft can be assigned elsewhere.
Very difficult to assign half a 744.
But as long as there are enormous airplanes, people will ask why all the airlines don't have them.
Ikramerica From United States of America, joined May 2005, 21314 posts, RR: 60 Reply 8, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 9000 times:
Quoting A350 (Reply 7): The 747 probably not, but I can imagine that a handful of 777-300ERs would fit very well into AAs fleet in the long term.
Actually a 787 order with a smaller order of 748s would make more sense from an engine perspective if they order the 787 with GE. Right now, their 772s are RR, so a fleet of 773ERs is no more logical than 748 (other than size). I suppose if they also wanted 772LR, you'd see a 773ER order. But without the 772LR and if they were to go with 787s with RR engines, I wouldn't imagine you'd see the 773ER or the 748 in AA colors.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
Texan From New Zealand, joined Dec 2003, 4242 posts, RR: 53 Reply 9, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 8975 times:
The cities from which AA operates cannot profitably sustain 747 service year round. Individual markets may be able to sustain some seasonal service, making it possible for AA to have up to four or five 747s. However, that means that maintenance and training costs will increase, as will flight crew costs. Flight crew costs will increase due to contract stipulations, with more senior crews pay increasing to a level that thins the profit margin for AA.
Bob Crandall helped rid AA of the 747 and vowed that the airline would never again operate an airplane that large. Using yield management, AA figured that they could maximize their profits by using the 763 (in the 80s) and the 777 instead of the 747. As long as their computers show that they can make more money operating the smaller widebodies, AA will not have another 747 in it's fleet.
"I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library."
Ikramerica From United States of America, joined May 2005, 21314 posts, RR: 60 Reply 11, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 8925 times:
Quoting Komododx (Reply 10): It is AA's policy to have a greater number of frequencies on planes with lower capacity than the opposite. Always has been, always will be.
If LHR opens up as planned and loses B2 restrictions, then slots would be more valuable. 2 748s take the same pax and cargo as 3 772s, so a switch to some 748s would not only free up LHR slots but the 772s it would need to use those slot from other cities as well as 772s for other routes to Asia.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
American 767 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 3522 posts, RR: 13 Reply 12, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 8855 times:
Ikamerica, I see you point and I understand what you mean but ordering only a small number of 747-8's would not be economical for maintenance management and crew scheduling. However if they do decide to buy it then they would order a couple of those to start with and see how efficient it is to operate the type, then they order additional units if it generates profit.
American had a couple of 747-SP's back in the late 80's and early 90's, they both came from defunct TWA. That was way before the AA/TWA merger. Those were flown on the DFW-HNL route until the MD-11 arrived, then once the first MD-11 was delivered the two SP's were assigned on the transatlantic sector for a year. Then they were retired in 1992 and replaced by additional 767's. I flew once on an American 747SP from JFK to BRU.
Commavia From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 10671 posts, RR: 62 Reply 15, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 8791 times:
Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 11): If LHR opens up as planned and loses B2 restrictions, then slots would be more valuable. 2 748s take the same pax and cargo as 3 772s, so a switch to some 748s would not only free up LHR slots but the 772s it would need to use those slot from other cities as well as 772s for other routes to Asia.
But the cost of establishing a new, non-standard fleet, along with all the maintenance, technology, equipment, tools, spares, parts, machinery, training, staffing, and logistics for only a few 747s would make any revenue gain from the value of the LHR slots meaningless. In addition, it really is not that easy to simply replace 777s with 747s on AA's U.S.-LHR routes. The only two routes that really have enough frequency to even contemplate such a change would be JFK-LHR (6x daily) and ORD-LHR (5x daily in summer). However, both of these routes are heavily business-oriented, and heavily high-yielding, premium-demanding. The customers who frequent these routes like having more frequency, the flexibility to adjust their schedule if their meeting ends early or runs long. It would not be worth it for AA to go from 5x ORD-LHR to, say, 3 or 4 with 747s, or from 6x JFK-LHR to, say, 4. They do just fine with 777s on these routes, and the 747 would be way too big for AA's other LHR routes -- BOS, LAX and MIA.
The 747s are simply too large for AA's network, which is why they will never fly in AA colors.
Quoting American 767 (Reply 12): Those were flown on the DFW-HNL route until the MD-11 arrived, then once the first MD-11 was delivered the two SP's were assigned on the transatlantic sector for a year.
Slight correction: the 747SPs were flown on DFW-NRT from 1987 until 1991, when the MD11s arrived. They were not used to HNL, which was always sovereign DC10 territory until that aircraft's retirement in 2000. You may be thinking of Braniff, who for years flew a bright-orange Boeing 747-100 (nicknamed the "Flying Pumpkin") on its flagship DFW-HNL route.
BigGSFO From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 2847 posts, RR: 7 Reply 16, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 8726 times:
Only if AA was the only airline offering service on some routes, such as MIA-GRU, JFK-LHR, ORD-NRT would they need a 747. Although I am sure they could fill it, they make more money using the 777's which fit nicely with their fleet and route strategy.
Ckfred From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 4934 posts, RR: 1 Reply 17, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 8632 times:
AA ordered 747s back when the plane was being launched. About the only route that made money was JFK-LAX, and that was back in the days of regulation, when there were fewer carriers on the route flying fewer aircraft.
The 747SPs that AA bought from Trans World were used out of DFW to both HNL and NRT. When AA got its first MD-11s, the 747SPs went to JFK for trans-Atlantic service, until AA took delivery of more MD-11s and 767s.
Positiverate From United States of America, joined May 2005, 1590 posts, RR: 9 Reply 19, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day ago) and read 8295 times:
Back in the late 90's I was riding on the train at ATL, and overheard a conversation a DL crew was having. One of the pilots was complaining about DL not having 747's, and said "back when I was at Pan Am and we were flying 747's everwhere..." at which point the Captain cut him off and said sarcastically: "How'd that work out for you guys?".
Dhefty From United States of America, joined May 2005, 599 posts, RR: 3 Reply 20, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day ago) and read 8287 times:
AA is an unusual airline from the standpoint that its fleet is primarily narrow-body and domestic, yet it serves many international destinations with an aging B767 fleet. (Their small B777-200ER fleet of 45 aircraft is their only strong point). They have no B777-300ER's, B787's, A330's or A350's on order. From my point-of-view, AA should have a much larger wide-body fleet to support and grow its international market. AA might be in danger of having a shrinking domestic base due to LCC's, and at the same time losing international business to competitors with newer and more efficient fleets, such as AF/KLM, EK, NW, ANA, JAL and even AC.
Even worse, AA is stuck with way too many (335!) gas-guzzling MD's.
ORD From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 1372 posts, RR: 1 Reply 21, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day ago) and read 8242 times:
Quoting Texan (Reply 9): Bob Crandall helped rid AA of the 747 and vowed that the airline would never again operate an airplane that large.
Well, not quite. Don't forget Crandall had an agreement in place to buy two 747-400s brand new from Boeing in 1990 for the Chicago-Tokyo route. When United ultimately won the route the deal was cancelled. Here's the press release AA issued at the time:
Copyright 1990 PR Newswire Association, Inc.
July 18, 1990, Wednesday
DISTRIBUTION: TO BUSINESS DESK AND AVIATION EDITOR
LENGTH: 352 words
HEADLINE: AMERICAN AIRLINES ACQUIRES TWO NEW 747-400 AIRCRAFT
DATELINE: DALLAS, July 18
DALLAS, July 18 /PRN/ -- American Airlines has agreed to
acquire from Canadian Airlines International the right to purchase
two new 747-400 aircraft from the Boeing Co.
American's obligation to complete the transaction is contingent
on its being designated by DOT Chief Administrative Law Judge John J.
Mathias to serve Chicago-Tokyo, the route on which the aircraft
will be used.
Robert L. Crandall, American's chairman and chief executive
officer, said the agreement with Canadian Airlines also includes
the purchase of four General Electric CF6-80C2B1F engines for each
of the 747-400s as well as necessary spares and support equipment.
The transaction will total approximately $330 million.
The airplanes will be delivered to American in February and May
"American is clearly the best choice for the Chicago-Tokyo
route," Crandall said. "The acquisition of these aircraft
demonstrates the depth of our commitment to serving the route and
developing our international hub at Chicago still further.
"Our willingness to pay a substantial premium for these
airplanes reflects the importance which the DOT's carrier selection
criteria give to having only the largest airplanes on limited
frequency routes such as Chicago-Tokyo," he said.
"Additionally, we believe that new opportunities to link our
major hub at Chicago with Tokyo are unlikely to be available in the
future, and acknowledge that the 747-400 is the optimal aircraft
for the route.
"For these reasons, we view the acquisition as an attractive and
prudent investment," Crandall said.
American has applied to DOT for authority on six new Japanese
routes: Chicago-Tokyo, Chicago-Nagoya, Los Angeles-Tokyo, Los
Angeles-Nagoya, San Jose-Tokyo and San Jose-Nagoya.
In May, the DOT's Public Counsel recommended American for
Chicago-Tokyo and San Jose-Tokyo authority, and for backup
authority between Los Angeles and Tokyo.
A ruling by Mathias is expected in a few weeks.
CONTACT -- Al Becker of American Airlines, 817-967-1577