PM From India, joined Feb 2005, 6813 posts, RR: 65 Posted (3 years 6 months 1 week 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 18222 times:
Today I flew (on a Cathay A330-300) from Fukuoka to Taipei to Hong Kong.
At all three airports there were A330s everywhere I looked.
They are operated by...
*all three major Hong Kong airlines
*both Korean airlines
*both Taiwanese airlines
*the three biggest Chinese airlines
*the three biggest Indian airlines
In short, they are operated by EVERY significant airline in Asia east of Pakistan.
Except, of course, JAL and ANA...
Of course, Japanese airlines and Japanese industry have close links to Boeing. But if every other airline in the region has seen the benefits of operating A330s, are JAL and ANA being pig-headed in refusing to join them?
UA772IAD From Australia, joined Jul 2004, 1693 posts, RR: 3 Reply 1, posted (3 years 6 months 1 week 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 18148 times:
With air traffic stagnating or shrinking out of Japan (it certainly isn't growing right now), I don't see the see need for A330-300s. A330-200s perhaps since they're similar in capacity to the 767s used by Japanese carriers, but IIRC, most Japanese 767s aren't that old (NH took some new ones in compensation for 787 delays).
It appears as though the Japanese carriers have the right sized equipment for their markets:
747-400Ds and 777-300s for Intra-Japan flights
767s (mostly) for Intra-Asian flights
747s and 777s for Intercontinental flights, and on some Intra-Asian flights.
767s make sense, especially since both NH and JL have 747s in their fleet; there is the benefit of having the same engines on two different aircraft (if powered by the same engine).
Not to nitpick , but the A330's flying for AI aren't Air India's, and owned and operated by a different company.
All I know is that the NH 767's are new to brand new, so phasing them out in favor of the A330 now would be financial mismanagement. And indeed, the close and history-based relationship with Boeing is important as you point out.
Never ask somebody if he's a pilot. If he is, he will let you know soon enough!
TommyBP251b From Germany, joined Apr 2006, 455 posts, RR: 0 Reply 4, posted (3 years 6 months 1 week 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 18060 times:
another reason maybe that there is no real exchange for the A300. I guess this type was flown by JAS and later JAL. It might fit their needs better on their high-density short-haul routes. An A330 might be uneconomically. LH also doesn't deploy its A333 on routes where their former A300 were flying on. They exchanged the A300 with the A321 which does not have the size.
Stitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 28479 posts, RR: 84 Reply 6, posted (3 years 6 months 1 week 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 17664 times:
Quoting PM (Reply 5): I wasn't thinking so much in terms of going forward (the moment has passed) but might they not usefully have ordered, received and operated A330s over, let's say, the past decade?
I don't see why not, but I expect neither airline is as ideologically bound to Boeing as some proclaim nor do I believe MITI handled their fleet RFP process, so I am left to conclude that operating the 767 and 777 combination fit their plans better than also adding the A330.
joost From Netherlands, joined Apr 2005, 3138 posts, RR: 4 Reply 10, posted (3 years 6 months 1 week 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 17224 times:
Quoting UALWN (Reply 7): This is now. But what about then? Why did NH order 767s instead of 330s?
Specifically in Japan, gate size at airports is an important issue. The wingspan of the 767-200 and -300 is 47.6 meters and fits the ICAO D-category for gate size. The A330's wing span is 60.3 meters, requiring E-category gates. Specifically in Japan, gate space at airports is limited and it's a major advantage to fit the D-category.
The 787-3 was specifically designed to fit exactly the D-category gates (D cat is up to 52.0 meters, and the 787-3 was proposed to have a wingspan of exactly 52.0 meters), explicitly aimed at Japanese carriers. The new 767-300ERs NH is receiving are part of Boeing's compensation package for cancelling the 787-3 project.
FCKC From France, joined Nov 2004, 2348 posts, RR: 4 Reply 11, posted (3 years 6 months 1 week 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 17137 times:
Even if the 787 hasn't been launched , and no new technologically advanced plane at the horizon , Japan would have not ordered A330s , but would have ordered more 767s !
In one word : old technology rather than Airbus.
UA772IAD From Australia, joined Jul 2004, 1693 posts, RR: 3 Reply 12, posted (3 years 6 months 1 week 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 16887 times:
Quoting PM (Reply 5): The same could be said of Korean, Asiana, EVA, Air China, Thai, Malaysia, etc., etc. Some did (and still do) operate 767s. But they still saw the benefit of operating A330s.
Your own Qantas, with big fleets of 747s and 767s, also bought - and are still taking delivery of - A330s.
I can't speak for all of the carriers listed, but Korean airlines have grown and expanded in recent years while Japanese airlines have retreated from some markets and adjusted service levels.
Don't get me wrong, NRT is a fantastic airport, but ICN is easier and cheaper to transit through to points and destinations in Asia. From what I know, the Korean market hasn't suffered like the Japanese market has (in terms of air travel), and the country hasn't seen a decline in population or international business.
Chinese airlines are government entities and order from both manufacturers and allocate aircraft to CA, MU, etc. TG, IIRC never operated the 767, and I don't think MH did either... both were Airbus A300/A310 customers that later ordered the 777.
As for QF, the airline has grown. Ansett disappeared (I don't remember if QF ever acquired aircraft from them) and we only have a few LCC operating domestic flights. Australia is a huge country that is sparsely populated. We don't have the infrastructure that Asia, Europe and the US has: high speed railrways and interstate highways to connect our cities. We still rely heavily on air travel to get around, even so when the economy was down.
QF retired its 747 classic fleet which played an important role in the domestic market, and needed something to fill the capacity void. The A330s operate domestic flights as well as to some international destinations and have been a huge part in establishing and growing the Jetstar arm of QF group. I'm not entirely sure what QF plans on using the A330 fleet for once the 787 join the fleet, I believe some will remain red-tails while others will be shifted to JQ operations.
The A330 was the more attractive aircraft of the two when QF ordered them. I'm not sure if QF was a 787 customer at the time of the order, of if it would have made a difference.
Quoting PM (Reply 5): You'll actually find more A300s than 747Ds and more 777-200s than -300s flying domestically.
Indeed. 777-200s and 300ERs seem to be almost exclusively devoted to international operations.
joost From Netherlands, joined Apr 2005, 3138 posts, RR: 4 Reply 13, posted (3 years 6 months 1 week 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 16880 times:
Quoting FCKC (Reply 11): In one word : old technology rather than Airbus.
Isn't that 5 words?
Besides that, there are reasons for the 767-300 over the A330:
1) The 767 fits D-category gates, important in Japan
2) The A330 has a greater cargo capacity, but for flying very short domestic segments, this functionality is hardly used
3) The 767 can turn around quicker than the A330-200, which was considered to be an issue for QF when flying the A330 on domestic routes, that used to see the 767 (see amongs others QF's A330-200's (by Qantaspower Jun 7 2004 in Civil Aviation) )
4) The extra range the A330 offers over the 767 is not needed for Japanese domestic ops (or even inter-asia ops) but the aircraft is more expensive nevertheless
5) Both NH and JL already had large 767 fleets, so fleet commonality could have well been an issue
Actually, I think that the A330-300 vs 777-200A is a more interesting comparison, than 332 vs 763.
airbuseric From Netherlands, joined Jan 2005, 4125 posts, RR: 51 Reply 14, posted (3 years 6 months 1 week 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 16651 times:
Quoting UA772IAD (Reply 1): It appears as though the Japanese carriers have the right sized equipment for their markets:
747-400Ds and 777-300s for Intra-Japan flights
767-300's are the backbone for the JL/NH domestic markets. 772 (non-ER) and 773 (non-ER) are used on higher density routes only. The 744D will not be around much longer. Don't forget the large fleet of JL AB6 (will retire also this year).
Quoting UA772IAD (Reply 1): 747s and 777s for Intercontinental flights, and on some Intra-Asian flights.
JL and NH will retire the 747-400's from use within this year, so only the 777's remain for intercontinental flights.
Asian operations are also flown with B737-800's and a lot of B767-300ER's.
Quoting joost (Reply 13): 2) The A330 has a greater cargo capacity, but for flying very short domestic segments, this functionality is hardly used
Sorry? The cargo market domestically in Japan is rather important. But weight is not a problem on the short routes of course. Especially since Japan consists of more islands, the aircrafts become very important to transport goods in Japan, since distances by road are long.
"The whole world steps aside for the man who knows where he is going"
joost From Netherlands, joined Apr 2005, 3138 posts, RR: 4 Reply 19, posted (3 years 6 months 1 week 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 13918 times:
Quoting RJ111 (Reply 9): Are we also able to conclude that a 73G/A320 fleet fits the airline's needs better than an A319/A320 fleet too?
I'm surprised so few other airlines have stumbled across this winning formula of A320s side by side 73Gs then.
There are only few airlines that have chosen to fly the A320 and 737NG side by side. (so not by merging/buying other carriers): The ones I can think of:
All seem to have specific stories, but all seem related to specific efforts from manufacturers to sell either plane, rather than operational preferences, or specific market conditions:
AB for example, ordered from both manufacturers to grow faster, and because both manufacturers were fighting for the order and offered good prices. SK is supposed to have had a very good deal on the A321 in a joint order with the A330s and A340s, and the 737-900 didn't seat as many people back then (before the ER-version). They also had 737NG, supposedly on a good deal too; later, they converted A321 orders to A319 when demand collapsed.
TK and SA had both manufaturers fighting for the order, for SA there was also a managemnt change and a change of aircraft purchase philosophy.
CFBFrame From United States of America, joined May 2009, 531 posts, RR: 3 Reply 20, posted (3 years 6 months 1 week 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 13385 times:
Singapore Air got the A330-300s as compensation for the A380 delays, and did not buy the -300s but leased the a/cs. QA, prior to compensation, had a developing fleet of A330-200s and -300s for the legs and capacity of the a/c over the 767s. QA also had performance issues as well as customer service support issues with Boeing on their fleet of 737s, which drove them to consider diversification. Jetstar got A320s because of the 737 dissatisfaction. The overall better performance of the A330s made the a/c appealing for their growth needs. QA is also moving some of the A330s over to Jetstar to expand that service offering. The A330 was a major win for Airbus at QF because they were an exclusive widebody Boeing customer prior to the move. The a/c proved itself and the rest is history.
Other East Asian airlines replaced 767s a/c with A330s, and they were also prior purchasers of A340s. JL and NH never had A340s so they did not have the fleet commonality opportunities the other airlines leveraged. Having A340s made the choice easier for most, expect for maybe KA and Asiana. The Japanese domestic story is also important. JL and NH have used the 747 as their fleet backbone for years, driven by large domestic demand as well as competing with train service. The 767 fits well with their needs, they're new (also compensation) and they provided the range needed for the international and domestice needs. The A300s met JAS capacity requirements and the runs were short where the A330s were not designed to address. Finally, Japan has had no strong business relationship with Airbus to justify a greater investment. This has been an issue for years.
You can also ask why China has not purchased equal numbers of 767s and 777s recently, and the answer is politics.
Very nice, but you forgot to mention:
6) The 330 offers superior fuel efficiency compared to the 767, thereby overriding points 1-5 above. If we were discussing 777 vs. 340 or 787 vs. 330, this argument would have been put forward by 9 out of 10 posters. Why doesn't it apply here?