g500 From United States of America, joined Oct 2011, 1041 posts, RR: 0 Posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 15298 times:
this move was decided on maintenace options. It appears UA's main 747 maintenance base is at SFO, so this will reduce down time... We might see a UA 747 here and there, but most will call SFO home effective inmediately
"United will replace 747s with Boeing 777-200s on its Chicago O'Hare to Tokyo Narita flight from 3 January 2013, and its Chicago-Hong Kong-Singapore flight from March 2013, it says."
"The airline will upgrade flights between San Francisco and Frankfurt, London Heathrow, Osaka Kansai, and Taipei to 747s from 777s as a result of the shift. It will also upgrade flights between Honolulu and Tokyo Narita to a 747 from a 777."
"United will continue to use 747-400s on flights between Los Angeles and Sydney, Australia."
kamboi From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 145 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 14497 times:
This not to my liking being a resident of San Francisco. I used to like the 774, but after my last flight from FRA to SFO on board a 744, I try to avoid them. Reason being that UAs fleet are not equipped with AVOD in every seat. It's only in business class. Thank god I slept the entire flight otherwise I would've been bored to death. Those overhead monitors are so 80s. C'mon UA, you can do better than that. Plus in the article it says UA has 26 744 with an age of 17 years.
planespotting From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 3547 posts, RR: 5
Reply 4, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 14332 times:
Quoting kamboi (Reply 2): I used to like the 774, but after my last flight from FRA to SFO on board a 744, I try to avoid them. Reason being that UAs fleet are not equipped with AVOD in every seat. It's only in business class. Thank god I slept the entire flight otherwise I would've been bored to death. Those overhead monitors are so 80s.
No kidding. I'm doing SFO-NRT and SYD-SFO in February in Economy Plus, and while I have an iPhone 5 and lots of content to watch/listen to, there is also no power except in Business or First. And I'd prefer my phone not be completely dead by the time I get to NRT or SFO on the return, so it's not like I can even run the battery down all the way (which would only provide a few hours worth of entertainment anyway).
Norcal773 From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 1452 posts, RR: 11
Reply 6, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 13697 times:
I avoid the UA 747s like the plague coz they're horrible in Economy. Fly one SFO-HKG earlier this year and never again. I flew UA to MUC the other day and the first choice when booking was the 747 SFO-FRA and then an LH A321 or SFO-IAD on a 737 and the UA 902 which is a 772 across the pond. Chose the 2nd option in a heart beat just to avoid the 744, as graceful as they are. They need a retrofit bad if UA plans on keeping them for a few more years.
AussieItaliano From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 442 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 13353 times:
Quoting gigneil (Reply 3): Why didn't you bring some reading material with you? A laptop, tablet, or other such device?
Sure, those are all good options, but I think the issue is that the UA 744 Economy/Economy Plus product doesn't have AVOD at every seat, while most airlines competing on those same routes do (or are at least in the process of getting them).
We all have different entertainment preferences when we fly (or even on the ground for that matter). I personally can't read for long periods of time since I lose concentration, and I prefer not to bring my laptop if I can avoid it. I think that part of the allure of the PTV is that it's already there, so you don't have to bring anything extra.
lucky777 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 5 days ago) and read 13232 times:
It truly is a shame when you look at the condition of UA's 747-400's. Just look at what Delta has done with their refurbished 747's and you can see just how nice the Queen of the Sky can be if your willing to invest in your product. Google Delta 747 for images and you'll see exactly what i mean.
AADC10 From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 2105 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 5 days ago) and read 12810 times:
There were a lot of mechanical delays on the 744s at ORD. Reducing their utilization rates and consolidating maintenance at the big SFO facility might help a little. The 744 fleet is another step closer to retirement.
SonomaFlyer From United States of America, joined Apr 2010, 1928 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 11453 times:
UA was broke a few years ago and declined to invest in retrofitting their 744's. They also deferred a ton of maintenance on the aircraft. The result is what you see now.
Their first class and business class products are competitive on the 744 but their economy class is terrible. If they even had a USB port to keep tablets or phones going, that would've been fine. Instead, they decided to do nothing regarding upgrading the back of the plane. They decided that folks are so myopic about price, they'll book UA regardless of how their hard product compares to the competition's. UA may actually be correct on that score given the fact their 744s usually fly full (whether their yields compare is another question).
On the other hand, UA is investing in upgrading sUA's 772s with nose to tail avod, switching from 2-5-2 to 3-3-3 seating and other upgrades to put their hard product on par with other airlines with which they compete. The same goes for the two class 763s.
Like many who take the time to know the various products available, I make a point to never fly UA's 744 if the trip is in economy or economy plus. Every airline that competes with UA on the 744 routes has a superior hard product and is often very close in price. It makes the decision easy. For those members of the public not bright enough to do about two minutes of research, UA has plenty of seats available for them on their 744s.
Within the next 7-10 years, UA will have a new wide body fleet of 787s and 359s. They will be state of the art in every respect and even economy class folks will have access to entertainment and power ports. The 744s will be chopped up or sitting in the desert.
CALPSAFltSkeds From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 2811 posts, RR: 9
Reply 13, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 11037 times:
From my count it looks like 19 of 23 units are needed to run a real tight schedule with all SFO aircraft turning around.
It looks like up to 4 units could be built into the sked for maint/reliablility at SFO, (in addition to a paint line and heavy maintenance).
There is substantial down time at BKK 7+ hours, HKG 14+ hours, PEK 21+ hours, SYD 8+ hours, LAX 12+ hours.
Normal turns are made at MEL, KIX, ICN, FRA and LHR
FYI: UA's online timetable does not show the 744 on KIX
Too bad they don't have AVOD in Y, but that may indicate retirement is too close to fund reconfiguration or UA has decided they'll be OK on marketing the current 744 product from SFO as UA may be able to control traffic due to FF programs at the major hub.
usflyer msp From United States of America, joined May 2000, 2262 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 10930 times:
Quoting Norcal773 (Reply 6): I avoid the UA 747s like the plague coz they're horrible in Economy. Fly one SFO-HKG earlier this year and never again. I flew UA to MUC the other day and the first choice when booking was the 747 SFO-FRA and then an LH A321 or SFO-IAD on a 737 and the UA 902 which is a 772 across the pond. Chose the 2nd option in a heart beat just to avoid the 744, as graceful as they are. They need a retrofit bad if UA plans on keeping them for a few more years.
I flew MSP-HKG earlier this year and I flew MSP-IAH-NRT-HKG-NRT-EWR-MSP just to avoid flying SFO/ORD - HKG on a UA 747.
IIRC, aren't a couple of UA's newest 744s wired for PTVs in Y? I'm seem to recall UA having the intention to install them, but 9/11 put a hold on those plans...permanently. It was supposed to be the same PTV system that the 3-class 763s and pre-refurb 777 have.
JohnClipper From Hong Kong, joined Aug 2005, 858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 10221 times:
Quoting g500 (Thread starter): "United will replace 747s with Boeing 777-200s on its Chicago O'Hare to Tokyo Narita flight from 3 January 2013, and its Chicago-Hong Kong-Singapore flight from March 2013, it says."
I thought the HKG-SIN tag was operated by the inbound 747 from SFO. According to the UA schedule, random flights in Feb and March HKG-SIN are still on the 744
cosyr From United States of America, joined Jul 2012, 447 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 9818 times:
without in seat power, an ipad won't last a 15 hour flight to SYD playing movies, and if like a lot of people you can't read on planes, that is a rough flight. Thank god I am flying J on that route,upstairs. On the sUA 777s I would never consider J. Eight across! I don't care what the seat is like, middle seats in J are inappropriate.
Surfandsnow From United States of America, joined Jan 2009, 2943 posts, RR: 31
Reply 22, posted (2 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 9504 times:
This marks the end of an era at ORD; UA has graced the airport with 747s for 4 decades. Meanwhile, SFO will be 747 haven with almost all of its long haul international services operated by the type. Some very interesting fun facts to note:
- All UA and UAX services from ORD will now be operated by twin-engined jet aircraft. This has never been the case before, as there was always a mix of four, two, and (between the mid-1960s and early 2000s) three engined aircraft operating from the hub.
- All of ORD's transpacific services will now be operated by the 777. The U.S. carriers (UA and AA) use the older 772 variants, whilst the Asian carriers (CX, JL, KE, NH, and OZ) utilize the state of the art 77W.
Fortunately, this does not mean the end of the 747 at ORD. As it stands today, there are still at least two regularly scheduled 747 options. One must simply be willing to head to Europe rather than Asia .
1) LH ORD-FRA. This route currently sees the 744, and is slated to get 748 service in the coming months. LH is extremely happy with the 748, and I daresay this flagship type will ply the ORD-FRA route for many years to come!
2) KL ORD-AMS. This is the one major intercontinental airline with a knack for operating venerable aircraft, and the rather rare 74M is but one example of this. Who knows how long they will keep serving ORD-AMS with the 74M, though.
It appears that even BA no longer sends the 747 to ORD anymore, even in the summer?
Flying in the middle seat of coach is much better than not flying at all!