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Royal Brunei To Expand With Sydney, Melbourne  
User currently offlineZKOJH From China, joined Sep 2004, 1663 posts, RR: 1
Posted (4 years 8 months 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 5922 times:

Royal Brunei Airlines (RBA) is reportedly set to expand, with prospective plans to revive flights to and from Sydney and add Melbourne to its network.

According to MICEBTN, the expansion will also involve a fleet update and comes as new chief executive Robert Yang takes the reins.

The carrier’s ageing B767 fleet will be replaced with new B777s by mid-2010 and 787 Dreamliners by late 2013 and 737-800s from 2011.

Next year, possible new routes will include flights to Ujung Padang (Indonesia) and Penang (Malaysia) and a return of services to Sydney and Shanghai.

Routes to Melbourne, Bahrain, Los Angeles, Frankfurt, Narita, Chennai, and Beijing are anticipated to be added from 2011.

The carrier is also expected to add non-stop flights to London in the second half of 2012 and to Los Angeles in 2013 with the delivery of new aircraft.


NZ 787-9 flying between PVG - AKL ! CAN'T WAIT!!
23 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinePewpew320 From New Zealand, joined Mar 2009, 117 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 5908 times:

Good news! I was going to fly them but Aucjkland-Brisbane-Brunei-Dubai-London is just ridiculous.

User currently offlineSA7700 From South Africa, joined Dec 2003, 3431 posts, RR: 26
Reply 2, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 5792 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
HEAD MODERATOR

Here is a link that confirms the planned services. It will be nice to see more Royal Brunei planes around: Royal Brunei To Expand With Sydney & Melbourne


Rgds

SA7700



When you are doing stuff that nobody has done before, there is no manual – Kevin McCloud (Grand Designs)
User currently offlineSurfandSnow From United States of America, joined Jan 2009, 2858 posts, RR: 30
Reply 3, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 5747 times:

These expansion plans seem awfully ambitious. But, I suppose Brunei can afford to sustain losses now to become a popular stopover a la Singapore in the future?


Flying in the middle seat of coach is much better than not flying at all!
User currently offlineMillwallSean From Singapore, joined Apr 2008, 1240 posts, RR: 6
Reply 4, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 5728 times:

Since I have been involved with this outfit I do want to say a few things.
Before anyone takes this to seriously, the sultan who underwrites the losses this airline makes first have to approve things. MICEBTN are taking some of these rumours to seriously. In general whenever we speak Royal Brunei we must remember that management and decision-making authority differs. Final word lies with the man footing the bill not the top manager. And that's important because Royal Brunei isnt profitable.

The sultan is smart and unlike his brother financially savvy, no way that we will see all that expansion. I would go as far as saying that I will eat my hat the day the LA flight is launched...

Management at Royal Brunei tend to have ambitious plans only to be brought down to earth by the people footing the bills.
Brunei with a population of 300.000 cant sustain routes that are guaranteed moneyloosers like LA, Frankfurt or for that sake Bombay.

Increasing Australia yes Sydney is a goer (not sure if they ever can make money there though). Melbourne would surprise me even though I can see the desire for it. Going direct to London yes that's a strong aspiration, but the rest! Hmm not really.
Regional cities is on the wishlist but the last few years have taught us that instead of flying unprofitable destinations RBA have retracted and focused on what they can do without to heavy losses. (look at the number of destinations dropped over the last 5 years, non of them were profitable)
I very much doubt they will be in Tokyo and Ujang Padang? They couldnt make Surabaya work and even the lowcosts struggle on routes to Celebes.
Increasing Kuching, adding a twice weekly to Penang sure but that's about it. (Not really sold on Penang but at least it has been discussed often before)

The 777 has been rumoured for years, at one stage ordered from leasing companies painted and ready for delivery then rejected by the government. I know that many say they have been ordered again but only time will tell if the sultan really allows that facebook airline manager dream to become reality.
Fact is Royal Brunei doesn't need the 777, the reason for this is that they cant fill a 767 without heavy discounting.

The 787 is a perfect sized plane for them, just like the A330 would have been. The 777 is a waste of money. We must remember, Royal Brunei is famous for one thing, having the cheapest tickets on the kangaroo route and the best deals between Asia and Oceania.
Upgrades are always given out at the transferdesk in Brunei and the Oceanic flights often goes out without any fullpaying passengers in the premium classes.
Expanding the amount of seats seems about as smart as selling sand in Sahara.
They cant fill the seats as it is and premium demand is not there.
The last numbers for Sydney were disasterous and that's why the service was withdrawn.

I love Royal Brunei, they offer great service and is very cheap. But until the planes are on the ground nothing coming out of the Bandar HQ should be taken as facts.



No One Likes Us - We Dont Care.
User currently offlinePM From Germany, joined Feb 2005, 6870 posts, RR: 63
Reply 5, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 5708 times:



Quoting ZKOJH (Thread starter):
new B777s

'New' or used??


User currently offlineThe777Man From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 6503 posts, RR: 55
Reply 6, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 5489 times:



Quoting PM (Reply 5):
'New' or used??

The 777s are supposedly already ordered, being the Unidentified Order of 4 777-200/LR from 3Jan2007.

I think that with the righ cost structure and fare structre, they could make LAX-BWN work by focusing on connections to Vietnam. There should even be demand for discounted C class fares LAX-SGN as long as the connection in BWN is not too long. Just my opinion.

The777Man



Need a Boeing 777 Firing Order....Further to fly....CI, MU, LX and LH 777s
User currently offlineNZ107 From New Zealand, joined Jul 2005, 6408 posts, RR: 38
Reply 7, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 5414 times:



Quoting MillwallSean (Reply 4):
Increasing Australia yes Sydney is a goer (not sure if they ever can make money there though). Melbourne would surprise me even though I can see the desire for it.

If Viva Macau is still operating (and even expanded to MEL), I don't see why BR can't survive in these 2 cities. As long as the connections to other Asian ports are made, it could very well be a viable option for travellers.



It's all about the destination AND the journey.
User currently offlineAviasian From Singapore, joined Jan 2001, 1486 posts, RR: 14
Reply 8, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 5400 times:

Millwallsean has hit it right on the nail. Royal Brunei's grand dreams are plenty but few are ever realised . . . not profitably at least.

I am not sure RBA could fill a wide-body aircraft on a nonstop service from Banda Seri Begawan to London. Besides it puny population, its tourism product is largely unknown. I recall how Brunei's tourism advertisments featured either the national park (a rainforest) or an amusement park. With all the monstrous themeparks in the world and the region (some of which are losing money), who would be interested to stopover in Brunei for a ride in the amusement park?

Thankfully as Millwallsean indicated, the man footing the bill is a lot more circumspect in investing in the airline and does not rubber-stamp the grand dreams of the airline's managers. I have travelled on RBA's service from FRA to BKK in 1996 and the service was absolutely superb. But then again, for those who consider alcohol as a must on a longhaul flight, RBA would again lose ground because it is one of those Islamic national carriers that does not serve alcohol onboard. And on the Kangaroo Route, this would be an issue.

I would be happy to see any form of expansion by RBA. It seems to have bolstered its flights between BWN and SIN.

KC Sim


User currently offlineSydaircargo From Australia, joined Jun 2008, 242 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 5400 times:

would be good to see them back in SYD

User currently offlineWoof From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 5187 times:

They might want to sort their booking engine out first.

I looked up a flight from LHR to BKK for a week from Dec 10 yesterday. Not available was plastered nearly everywhere (although some 'Not Available' flights were selectable).

Worse still, the available return flights had the Brunei > LHR segment leaving a day before the BKK > Brunei segment. I'd like to see someone make that connection.


User currently offline777way From Pakistan, joined Dec 2005, 5716 posts, RR: 4
Reply 11, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days ago) and read 4998 times:

Are PEK and NRT also resumptions besides PVG, SYD, BAH and FRA

Quoting ZKOJH (Thread starter):
Routes to Melbourne, Bahrain, Los Angeles, Frankfurt, Narita, Chennai, and Beijing are anticipated to be added from 2011.


[Edited 2009-12-03 08:52:03]

User currently offlineCchan From New Zealand, joined May 2003, 1759 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (4 years 8 months 2 days ago) and read 4941 times:



Quoting Aviasian (Reply 8):
an amusement park

Been there in 2002. The place is quite run down and a lot of the facilities were not operative.

How long are those 777s going to stay in the fleet if they ever get them?


User currently offlineVictrola From United States of America, joined Apr 2008, 501 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (4 years 8 months 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 4819 times:



Quoting MillwallSean (Reply 4):
I would go as far as saying that I will eat my hat the day the LA flight is launched...

You are right. We all know that the Brunei population in the U.S. A. (all 3 of them) is centered in San Diego. Big grin


User currently offlineJAL From Canada, joined Apr 2000, 5083 posts, RR: 8
Reply 14, posted (4 years 8 months 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 4718 times:

Anyone knows why the deal to take 777s fell through?


Work Hard But Play Harder
User currently offlineMillwallSean From Singapore, joined Apr 2008, 1240 posts, RR: 6
Reply 15, posted (4 years 8 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 4566 times:

Yet again, I really like RBA and uses them frequently. they are a great little outfit. But over-expansion into markets that they cant sustain seems so unnecessary. build on the measures taken (codeshares/cancellations) the last few years when the worst routes were cancelled. Build slowly.

Now Air Asia has gotten in on the KK-Brunei route as well. A route that was decent for RBA.

Sabah provides plenty of feed to the Australia flights but with AirAsia X coming online more and more this feed will face price-competition. That cant be good for RBA.

Quoting Cchan (Reply 12):
Been there in 2002. The place is quite run down and a lot of the facilities were not operative.

Today almost everything is closed inside the park. A bit sad, used to be a good place.

Quoting NZ107 (Reply 7):
If Viva Macau is still operating (and even expanded to MEL), I don't see why BR can't survive in these 2 cities. As long as the connections to other Asian ports are made, it could very well be a viable option for travellers.

Hmm have you seen Viva Macaus numbers...
That would otherwise answer your question.

RBA surviving on these cheap connections. Surviving on connections only isnt easy, connections add plenty of costs but doesnt bring in much extra revenue. Thats something that needs to be remembered. Surviving on discounted economy class tickets that are connections that would be financial suicide.

Seriously, the reason they cant survive is because RBA is operating a loss making venture. The last time the airline went to Sydney they suffered heavy losses and the new routes wont be any different. Problem is that demand to Bandar is almost zero and filling up seats by selling the cheapest tickets when you're homebase is Brunei isnt sustainable long-term.

The new manager has of course been promised lots of things but when the results come in he, just like a few before him, will realise that he cant fulfil his ambitious plans.
Red numbers will see to that.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 6):
I think that with the righ cost structure and fare structre, they could make LAX-BWN work by focusing on connections to Vietnam. There should even be demand for discounted C class fares LAX-SGN as long as the connection in BWN is not too long. Just my opinion.

Now the market to Saigon isnt that low yield?
No way a very small airline, with a homebase of 300.000 people, mainly staffed by locals that enjoy a better living standard, higher wages (not stewardesses but quite a few other positions costs a lot more in Brunei) compared to most Asians and reliant on a pool of expat captains (European/antipodean and Asian) can compete for the low yielding business between the US and Saigon.

Quoting JAL (Reply 14):
Anyone knows why the deal to take 777s fell through?

777 fell through because they would never ever make money for RBA.
Someone noticed that and no check was written to the managers. Too expensive.
This was after management had sent crew for training, taken some pilots off the rooster and established a 777 rooster for them. Some stayed on this 777 rooster for quite some time not doing any flying waiting for that phantom 777 that was painted and displayed on pictures.
The man that are very keen on the 777 will no doubt try to get those aircraft's again and will probably be blocked yet again when the bankers realise that the projections are laughable and that RBA wont be able to make money with such aircraft.

A330 or even better the 787 if/when it finally gets certified, anything else is just pure madness.

I really like RBA they are a great outfit. But until they can find a way of doing business that doesnt just involve catering to discounted economy class tickets I cant really see the point of ambitious plans that just will end up costing the sultan money.

I actually don't think that the alcohol ban impacts sales on the kangaroo route that much. the reason is that the people that go for RBA goes for the lowest price. People that shop based upon price only are often prepared to abstain from certain amenities.
besides the VFR, backpacker traffic that frequent RBA on the kngaroo route often tends to have one stopover that are 8 hours or so in bandar. That would be a lot worse than being wo alcohol.
These people are often seen laying on the benches of bandar seri begawans airport. Some even dare to venture downstairs to the sleeping rooms but many seem unwilling to pay the small fee for the dayroom so saving money must be a very high priority for them.



No One Likes Us - We Dont Care.
User currently offlineThe777Man From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 6503 posts, RR: 55
Reply 16, posted (4 years 8 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 4555 times:



Quoting MillwallSean (Reply 15):
Now the market to Saigon isnt that low yield?

Yes, but there's a growing business demand from the US to Vietnam. Besides BO could provide easy connections to KUL, SIN and CGK. Arrival time in early mornig for both the LHR and LAX flights.

I do think that the no alcohol policy will make it more diffocult to attract higher yield passengers....

The777Man



Need a Boeing 777 Firing Order....Further to fly....CI, MU, LX and LH 777s
User currently offlineDirectorguy From Egypt, joined Jul 2008, 1652 posts, RR: 11
Reply 17, posted (4 years 8 months 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 4345 times:

Why on earth would Royal Brunei operate Brunei-Bahrain? Is there demand for such a route? If they wanted a second Gulf city, they should do perhaps DOH, or JED, which is further afield but demand might be existant (religious tourism).

I know Royal Brunei operated Brunei-Bahrain-Cairo, but obviously that was axed in the 1990s. Can't imagine the situation's changed that much.


User currently offlineCchan From New Zealand, joined May 2003, 1759 posts, RR: 2
Reply 18, posted (4 years 8 months 22 hours ago) and read 4239 times:



Quoting MillwallSean (Reply 15):
people that go for RBA goes for the lowest price

Say, if I purchase a cheap fare on BI, am I helping this airline or will the sultan prefer me to fly with someone else, so he doesn't have to subsidise the loss from selling me a cheap ticket?


User currently offlineAFGMEL From Australia, joined Jul 2007, 744 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (4 years 8 months 21 hours ago) and read 4198 times:

Their fares are very low indeed. I haven't been tempted because of their bad connections and reviews.


B 727-44/200 732/3/4/8/9 767-3 742/3/4, 772/3, A319/20/21 332/333 342/3 , DC3/4/10, F28/50/100, ATR72
User currently offline777ER From New Zealand, joined Dec 2003, 12082 posts, RR: 18
Reply 20, posted (4 years 8 months 5 hours ago) and read 4014 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
FORUM MODERATOR



Quoting NZ107 (Reply 7):
Viva Macau

If Viva Macau is the airline that operated an NZ B733 on NZ AOC, then Viva Macau stopped operating shortly after launching and the B733 was returned to AKL


User currently offlineVirginFlyer From New Zealand, joined Sep 2000, 4537 posts, RR: 41
Reply 21, posted (4 years 7 months 4 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 3841 times:



Quoting 777ER (Reply 20):
If Viva Macau is the airline that operated an NZ B733 on NZ AOC, then Viva Macau stopped operating shortly after launching and the B733 was returned to AKL

Luckily it isn't. Viva Macau is an airline based in Macau, a Special Administrative Region of China. See http://www.flyvivamacau.com/en/

You are thinking of Palau Micronesia Air, an airline which operated out of Palau, a Pacific island nation north of New Guinea and east of The Philippines. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palau_Micronesia_Air

V/F



"So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth." - Bahá'u'lláh
User currently offlineETA Unknown From Comoros, joined Jun 2001, 2073 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (4 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 3537 times:

As the person responsible for initiating the family european fares ex Australia (I'm flattered they still exist long after my departure!) on RBA I can safely say MEL and LAX will never, ever happen. Sydney again maybe if they can sort out the slots and LHR connections.

LAX was experimented with in the mid 90's as a via MNL and HNL service, but PAL objected. Then the Bruneian Govt. tried to buy part of PAL, but that didn't work out either. Then RBA toyed briefly with a HNL termination (also via MNL).

All the abandoned ports (KWI, SHJ, MCT, CCU, BAH, ZRH etc) were mainly prestige flying while trying to capture 5th freedom traffic with 767 engine limitations. And who can forget the short-lived and crazy BWN-RGN-AUH-LHR flight that was blamed on "American propaganda" by those in Commerical Dept. head office to justify non-existant loads to/from RGN. And the BIMP-EGA plan to service every local destination in ASEAN that never made it past Balikpapan.

As correctly stated above, BWN is home to less than 350,000 people- most of RBA's business is connecting traffic, hence their problem in obtaining landing rights in many countries. And now they have to contend with Air Asia and a Sultan who no longer writes them an annual blank cheque. In fact, DRW was only operated as long as it was because it was a condition of the air services agreement in order to expand PER/BNE... there was an option to switch it for CNS, but we made the assessment DRW was the better option as higher yielding traffic.


User currently offlineFauzi From Brunei, joined Jul 2005, 219 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (4 years 7 months 2 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 3210 times:

Actually, the B777 deal fell through because of a huge argument with the bank, as the bank didn't want to finance for initial checks etc.

But seriously, Los Angeles as a destination? Ha-ha-ha. I think regional flights are the real money makers for BI, for example all 3x daily flights to SIN and BKI are always at least 70% full.

Honestly, I think BI has too much staff on their payroll. Take a look at MI, they don't have a lot of the premium routes, but they are pretty much profitable, probably a few millions, but a profit is still a profit. MH was suffering from heavy losses for years, but after the CEO came in and reorganised and reshuffled the staff, they were no longer in red.


Once on a flight to PER from BWN, I swear I saw a Ferrari being shipped under the belly of the B763...  scratchchin 



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