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Low Cost Airlines  
User currently offlineRom1 From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2005, 135 posts, RR: 0
Posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 4232 times:

Hello!

Currently undergoing a research project, I am interested in all the requirements that Low Cost airlines are asking to the manufacturers considering the purchase of new aircraft, assuming they are starting business (no fleet commonality involved)
...like if you were to design a new aircraft specially aiming towards this market

A few points I already though about were:
- low DOC costs
- minimum turn-around time
- low maintenance costs

I guess the passenger comfort is not likely to be taken seriously into account but (apart from Ryanair lol) do the Low Cost carriers put some efforts about their passengers "happiness"?

I've done some research on turn around time too, and found that the best TO time was about 25 minutes with Ryanair, what prevents Ryanair to go faster? Can the plane be refuelled when passengers are boarding? can 15 minutes be possible at a remote airport where there is only one flight a day?

thanks a lot for your inputs, any suggestions and ideas will greatly help me!

Rom1

19 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineFuturecaptain From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 4213 times:

Quoting Rom1 (Thread starter):
do the Low Cost carriers put some efforts about their passengers "happiness"?

Yes. Some even more than the legacy carriers. Airlines such as Frontier and Jet Blue have PTV's installed. Leather seats are also starting to catch on in coach.

Quoting Rom1 (Thread starter):
what prevents Ryanair to go faster? Can the plane be refuelled when passengers are boarding?

Yes, you can refuel while pax are moving around inside? What prevents them from going faster is the 100+ people, all of whom have carryon luggage(In the US it seems) which needs to be found and the whole plane is walking down 1 aisle which slows us down. The rampers need to offload a full a/c of baggage and cargo and load up the next one.
The crew needs to clean and the pilots need to check the airplane for the next flight. Then there could be a slot the plane has to wait for to push back.
It is possible to turn an a/c quicker. Fly a route with a light load incoming and another light load going out on the same plane. The whole boarding / deboarding process goes much quicker.


User currently offlineB6JFKH81 From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2882 posts, RR: 7
Reply 2, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 4175 times:

Quoting Rom1 (Thread starter):
I guess the passenger comfort is not likely to be taken seriously into account but (apart from Ryanair lol) do the Low Cost carriers put some efforts about their passengers "happiness"?

B6 actually removes a row of seats to add additional legroom, we install PTVs with 36 channels of DirecTV and 100 channels of XM radio, cover the seats in leather and increase the size of the overhead bins. So I guess you could say that we do put a little effort into it.

Quoting Rom1 (Thread starter):
can 15 minutes be possible at a remote airport where there is only one flight a day?

Possibly if you do both front and rear de-planing and re-loading, and move like all heck with the baggage. Don't forget that a lot of times a quick cleaning has to get done as well to get rid of all the garbage in the seat back pockets. If the a/c doesn't need provisioning items on the turn...that helps too.



"If you do not learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it"
User currently offlineRyanairCRL From France, joined Dec 2005, 190 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 4149 times:

Quoting Rom1 (Thread starter):
what prevents Ryanair to go faster? Can the plane be refuelled when passengers are boarding? can 15 minutes be possible at a remote airport where there is only one flight a day?

you can disembark while fueling, that's no problem as long as one of the pilots is in the cockpit. But in Italy for example, you can't board while fueling,so that slows everything down...a lot !!

15min turn-around..forget it.

just to take FR's example: when the flight is full, you've 189 pax to disembark (you always a family or two that takes a bit longer) then you've got to clean the whole cabin, and board another 189 pax (with only half of them waiting at the gate probably) so again you lose time. 25min is already very short (it's actually the same as when we had the 732 except we've got 66 more pax to disembark, board and seats to clean).

FR gains some time by having built-in steps at the front, but we still require steps for the back door. Now those don't always come on time, so sometimes most pax have to disembark through the front. Some airports only use airbridges (ie AGP), so disembarking and boarding is only done by 1 door, again losing time.
other airports (ie BGY) use buses to transport pax, meaning you don't have a constant flow a pax but rather a few mass arrival, thus people pile up on the stairs and everything slows down.

then there is always some outside factor that makes you loose some time, even if not long 1-2min, but when you do a 25min turn-around, 1 or 2min are very precious.

IMO, anything under 25min would be madness.



http://flyingtom.myphotoalbum.com
User currently offlineRom1 From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2005, 135 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 4058 times:

thanks for your answers!! I hope some more will be coming too!!

I though about suggesting a seating configuration of 2+2+2 instead of 3+3, that means with two aisle but of course the fuselage diameter increases and that would add considerable weight to the aircraft, so not good for DOC costs....
And turn-around time would not be improved that much, there would be a traffic jam at the door anyway.
On the other hand it add a lot of passenger comfort...


How long would you say that low cost carrier would keep their aircraft in their fleet? they are usually new ailines so it's hard to have a precise idea, my guess would be between 5 and 10 years, because maintenance increases with age (I guess)

And finally what would be the good and bad comments that you would make about the A320family and the B737 when it comes to general operations for the low cost airlines?
(as an example I would make a positive comment about the airstair in the 737 for cost savings and autonomy at airport, on the other hand the cargo bay of the A320 is bigger, thus allowing LD containers to fit in, that makes baggage loading so much easier and faster.)

thanks a lot!!  Smile


User currently offlineATAIndy From United States of America, joined May 2004, 606 posts, RR: 4
Reply 5, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 4052 times:

I little humor while you do your hw  Wink

How to make a LCC jet:

Buy one 737 or A319/320 and take everything out of the fuselage. Then throw in some seats that are as close together as possible, one "potty," one FA and your good to go.



Boiler up! - Next flights: IND-DFW-AUS, AUS-DFW-IND
User currently offlineRom1 From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2005, 135 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 3996 times:

if it wasn't for security reasons, I'm sure they would not have put any seats inside, but some handles on the ceiling so that people can hold to them during take off and landing  Smile like on a bus

User currently offlineATAIndy From United States of America, joined May 2004, 606 posts, RR: 4
Reply 7, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 3996 times:

Quoting Rom1 (Reply 6):
if it wasn't for security reasons, I'm sure they would not have put any seats inside, but some handles on the ceiling so that people can hold to them during take off and landing Smile like on a bus

I think I remember that proposed idea on the A-380, with the low, low cost airlines.



Boiler up! - Next flights: IND-DFW-AUS, AUS-DFW-IND
User currently offlineNWADC9 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 4896 posts, RR: 10
Reply 8, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 3940 times:

Quoting ATAIndy (Reply 5):
How to make a LCC jet:

Buy one 737 or A319/320 and take everything out of the fuselage. Then throw in some seats that are as close together as possible, one "potty," one FA and your good to go.

We can ditch the lav, and add stand-up seats  Wink



Flying an aeroplane with only a single propeller to keep you in the air. Can you imagine that? -Capt. Picard
User currently offlineRom1 From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2005, 135 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 3882 times:

Quoting Rom1 (Reply 4):
And finally what would be the good and bad comments that you would make about the A320family and the B737 when it comes to general operations for the low cost airlines?
(as an example I would make a positive comment about the airstair in the 737 for cost savings and autonomy at airport, on the other hand the cargo bay of the A320 is bigger, thus allowing LD containers to fit in, that makes baggage loading so much easier and faster.)

any more thought?  Wink
thanks

Rom1


User currently offlineSpantax From Belgium, joined Nov 2004, 323 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 3837 times:

Hi, I should eliminate the forward galley and toilets on 737 (2 toilets are enough, even for 190 passengers, IMO), thus gaining a lot of space and saving weight for a second built-in stair at the rear. Another fool idea: to change the section of the aircraft. Instead of a cross section like this "O", one like this "0", thus gaining space on the baggage area; the passengers would board the plane with their own luggage (hand luggage + checker luggage) via a corridor and put it directly on special shelves situated on each side of what is now the luggage hold. And then they would go upstairs through an internal stair. Of course, hand luggage bins would disappear. Total weight of the aircraft would be the same. And of course, size and weight of the luggage should be strict and strictly applied, penalizing strongly big sizes/weights. This is a foolish idea that should be worked out but the aim should be a 15 minutes TO. Regards


A300.10.19.20.21.30.40,AN26,ATR42,AVR146,B717.27.37.47.57.77,B1900,C130,C212,CH47,CRJ200.700,DC9,DHC4,ERJ135.190,F27
User currently offlineHBJZA From Switzerland, joined Jan 2006, 377 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 3780 times:

Quoting B6JFKH81 (Reply 2):
we install PTVs with 36 channels of DirecTV

Very nice in the USA but in Europe it's impossible to have Direct TV because of the different languages and also the rights and the amazing number of channels in each country !!!!


User currently offlineMandala499 From Indonesia, joined exactly 13 years ago today! , 6844 posts, RR: 75
Reply 12, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 3761 times:

ROM,
Add:
Longer hours/cycles intervals between maintenance
Less maintenance downtime
Longer ENGINE "ON WING" HOURS
Systems Simplicity
Predictive Maintenance Monitoring using Centralised Maintenance Monitoring System
Baggage hold design and hold height above tarmac that enables fast handling and manual handling to lower support equipment investments.
If required, another door to use!
Faster Self-Contained Airstairs deployment/stowage
Choose either an easier to load overhead storage bins or abolish them altogether!

What prevents Ryanair from turning around faster?
Taxying distances
Brake Cooling

Other things that could shorten turnaround:
A "Let's Clean the aircraft" policy on descent where the pax and crew are asked to remove all the rubbish and shove them to the trash trolley hauled around by the crew in the name of "Helping everyone move quicker and fly cheaply"... I hear Air Asia does this already... Any others?

Seat back Safety cards... saves time from making sure there's one in every seat.
No seatback pocket... again cleaner... lighter...

This is not my taste of flying, but then, you ask the question, we deliver... and then we scream and bang our heads on the table when another airline applies those things...  Smile

Mandala499



When losing situational awareness, pray Cumulus Granitus isn't nearby !
User currently offlineBond007 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 5413 posts, RR: 8
Reply 13, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 3743 times:

Quoting HBJZA (Reply 11):
Very nice in the USA but in Europe it's impossible to have Direct TV because of the different languages and also the rights and the amazing number of channels in each country !!!!

Little different at all, anywhere in the world. Satellite TV, by it's design, has channels in all languages from numerous countries, you just need to decide which ones to show. Trust me, there are an amazing number of channels everywhere, including the USA. This should be an advantage...not a reason why it's impossible.


Jimbo



I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
User currently offlineDebonair From Germany, joined Jan 2004, 2417 posts, RR: 4
Reply 14, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 3646 times:

Quoting Rom1 (Reply 4):
And finally what would be the good and bad comments that you would make about the A320family and the B737 when it comes to general operations for the low cost airlines?

You are French... Thats important to understand! Why? at least in europe we have the regulation, that 1 flight-attendant is required per 50seats. Now, and I don't understand this issue, most A319 operator are putting 156Y in an A319- with an extra emergency exit. Why, I don't know...  scratchchin 

So you have a maximum of 7 passengers more- but at the same time you have to pay an extra salary... Keeping in mind, that the average load-factor on LoCo-carrier are around between 65-90% (maybe)... Even many LoCo-Airlines are reducing the seats, to save this extra cost and weight (e.g. Fokker 100, Bae 146-200/300, seats are kept under Y100, even more pax are possible!

Back to A320 vs. B737, the B737 has also a lower undercarriage, making it easier to load/unload!

Quoting Rom1 (Thread starter):
Can the plane be refuelled when passengers are boarding?

Will, not easy to answer. It depends on the regulation of the company, as well of the country... And if it possible, the aiport firebrigade is required on site to monitor the re-fueling! So extra cost...


User currently offlineRom1 From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2005, 135 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 3598 times:

Hi Mandala499!

That is a big and interesting load of input  Smile
I'll be looking a lot in the cabin interior design to gain some turn-around time, and the baggage issue. Getting rid of the cargo hold would clearly be a gain in time and cost as you won't need the 2 or 3 ground staff to unload the bags!

Some "train style" cabin configuration could be beneficial!

More inputs more than welcomed of course  Smile

Rom1


User currently offlineFL1TPA From United States of America, joined May 2004, 258 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 3578 times:

As far as trimming time off an A/C turn with regard to boarding, I believe Southwest still has the edge in the US. First come, first served. When people get on and pick thier desired seat, there's no "I think I'll get up and go to the Lav now" or "I'll just stand in the aisle for 15 minutes examining each and every item in my carry-on before I take a seat" and that's because they know if they get up, another customer may get thier seat. I'm still amazed when I fly them; 130+ people off, 130+ people on in 20 minutes or less.

Personally, I feel we (AirTran) made the right choice of A/C type between the 737-700 and A320. Granted the A320 has greater cargo space and seating capacity than the 737-700, but the performance element is where the 737-700 shines through. Headwinds or no, a 737-700 will make it ATL-SFO with no problems. The 700 can do LAX/SFO-HNL or JFK/BOS-LHR; that's some awesome range. Longer legs means more opportunity and options in destinations.

Just my opinion.

FL1TPA



"Looks like I picked the wrong week to stop sniffin' glue."
User currently offlineRom1 From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2005, 135 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 3483 times:

Quoting Debonair (Reply 14):
Quoting Rom1 (Reply 4):
And finally what would be the good and bad comments that you would make about the A320family and the B737 when it comes to general operations for the low cost airlines?

You are French... Thats important to understand! Why? at least in europe we have the regulation, that 1 flight-attendant is required per 50seats. Now, and I don't understand this issue, most A319 operator are putting 156Y in an A319- with an extra emergency exit. Why, I don't know... scratchchin

So you have a maximum of 7 passengers more- but at the same time you have to pay an extra salary... Keeping in mind, that the average load-factor on LoCo-carrier are around between 65-90% (maybe)... Even many LoCo-Airlines are reducing the seats, to save this extra cost and weight (e.g. Fokker 100, Bae 146-200/300, seats are kept under Y100, even more pax are possible!

not sure what me being French is relevant for this, if it's about A vs B I really don't care, both airplanes are very good for low cost carriers depending on their ops  Wink

Easyjet added an extra 7 seats because apparently they got a very big deal from Airbus to add those extra seats. I guess the cabin length was big enough so why not put these seats anyway.


User currently offlineB6JFKH81 From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2882 posts, RR: 7
Reply 18, posted (7 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 3405 times:

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 13):
Little different at all, anywhere in the world. Satellite TV, by it's design, has channels in all languages from numerous countries, you just need to decide which ones to show. Trust me, there are an amazing number of channels everywhere, including the USA. This should be an advantage...not a reason why it's impossible.

Blue Wings is purchasing 5 of our aircraft, 2 of which are already with them. We did not remove the dish from the a/c so I am thinking they are looking into activating service onboard the a/c. Wonder how that is going to work out for them.

Quoting FL1TPA (Reply 16):
Longer legs means more opportunity and options in destinations.

100% agree about adding potential, but at the same time the longer a leg, the less that a/c is going to turn around customers in a day possibly reducing its potential of generating additional income.



"If you do not learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it"
User currently offlineRom1 From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2005, 135 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 3239 times:

Back to the aircraft that the low cost carriers are currently flying: A320 and B737 for the majority of them, they were not initially designed for the Low Cost market.

What would be the best type of aircraft for them then?

-low maintenance? well this is the same for airlines, flag carriers or low cost I guess, so not really an issue here
-ground autonomy? definitly a thing to look at, Boeing have airstairs, Airbus use LD containers, he best would be a combination of the two features on ONE aircraft I guess
-Cabin layout? would you change the usual 3-3 config? this configuration seems the best in terms of space utilisation. It also has a conventional fitness ratio. a 2-2-2 config for exemple will increase the diameter and thus the weight of the aircraft increasing it's drag and operating costs
-Good take off performances? to operate on short fields and because on these short range aircraft cruise efficiency is less effective than for long hauls operations.


basically I'm looking at specific technical ideas that would make the aircraft (and not the airline policy) best for a low cost carrier. Something that the current aircraft A320 and B737 don't do and that the low cost airlines need...
... and something that I haven't think of in the things I previously said  idea 


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