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Aircraft Liveries - Are They Still Necessary?  
User currently offlineyankeejuliet From Jamaica, joined Sep 2008, 201 posts, RR: 0
Posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 14379 times:
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With the elimination of waving galleries and observation decks, are expensive paint necessary on passenger aircraft anymore? Employees on the tarmac or in the terminal only require.s the registration on an all white aircraft for identification of the airline. Spotters are very few and hardly catered for at airports.

55 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineDLPMMM From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 3589 posts, RR: 10
Reply 1, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 14367 times:

The planes need to be painted anyway. It is not that much more to add the livery, and it provides for marketing and product differentiation.

Otherwise we might just as well have generic airlines, like generic toilet paper.

If it was that much cheaper and not worth it in terms of marketing return, you could be sure that MOL and Ryanair would have all white.


User currently offlineAeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20394 posts, RR: 62
Reply 2, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 14255 times:

Quoting yankeejuliet (Thread starter):
Employees on the tarmac or in the terminal only require.s the registration on an all white aircraft for identification of the airline.

And when ATC says "follow company plane to ..." and all of the planes are white ...



International Homo of Mystery
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15719 posts, RR: 26
Reply 3, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 14000 times:

Quoting yankeejuliet (Thread starter):
With the elimination of waving galleries and observation decks, are expensive paint necessary on passenger aircraft anymore?

You'll need some sort of paint or polish for protection of the aircraft skin. You might as well use the free advertising space.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 24863 posts, RR: 22
Reply 4, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 13952 times:

Most of today's liveries are simpler than they used to be, partly because a large percentage of airliners are leased and frequently change operators. The simpler the livery the cheaper it is for the lessor when the lease expires and they have to find a new operator.

Air travel is also rapidly becoming a commodity where most people only care about finding the lowest fare which makes the livery less important.

Branding is still important but primarily in advertising, websites etc., not on the aircraft itself. By the time people see the aircraft they've already made their purchase decision, and even if they haven't, it's doubtful the livery will have much if any impact on the customer's choice of carrier.


User currently offlinebx737 From Ireland, joined Sep 2001, 678 posts, RR: 3
Reply 5, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 13843 times:

It is interesting to note though that passengers pay attention. I recently worked on my own airline's retro jet and was asked quite a number of times about the livery from passengers as they boarded.

User currently offlinePA110 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1995 posts, RR: 23
Reply 6, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 13715 times:
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Quoting DLPMMM (Reply 1):
Otherwise we might just as well have generic airlines, like generic toilet paper.

Have you flown recently? We already do!   

There is very little product differentiation these days. Airlines with identifiable style have gone the way of the dodo bird. Only a.nutters would pick apart esoteric differences such as interior furnishings, crew uniforms, etc... To the traveling public, it's very much transport from point A to point B. The only branding that seems to matter these days is the loyalty program.

The OP poses a provocative question: Do liveries really matter any more? I would suspect to the general public, probably not so much.

[Edited 2013-03-29 14:44:49]


It's been swell, but the swelling has gone down.
User currently offlineEricR From United States of America, joined Jul 2010, 1900 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 13635 times:

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 4):
The simpler the livery the cheaper it is for the lessor when the lease expires and they have to find a new operator.



Why would this make a difference to the lessor? I think you mean it is cheaper for the lessee. Under the majority of leases, it is the lessee's responsibility to return the aircraft the lessor in plain white finish.


User currently offlineEIDL From Ireland, joined Apr 2012, 414 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 13565 times:

Customers - not even aviation geek ones - definitely still notice and appreciate liveries. Just take a quick Google for the reaction that Irish people who've been abroad for some time appear to get when they see a green top down the end of their pier in an airport.

User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 24863 posts, RR: 22
Reply 9, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 13545 times:

Quoting EricR (Reply 7):
Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 4):
The simpler the livery the cheaper it is for the lessor when the lease expires and they have to find a new operator.



Why would this make a difference to the lessor? I think you mean it is cheaper for the lessee. Under the majority of leases, it is the lessee's responsibility to return the aircraft the lessor in plain white finish.

In any case, it's still cheaper if the livery is already mostly white.

[Edited 2013-03-29 15:27:25]

User currently offlineODwyerPW From Mexico, joined Dec 2004, 840 posts, RR: 2
Reply 10, posted (1 year 4 months 23 hours ago) and read 12586 times:

737 windshield bezels are notorious for having chipped paint.

I've seen passengers look out the window at a waiting 737NG and comment.. Look how old it is? I fly southwest allot. The Canyon Blue around the windows just peels and oxidizes away. Customers think they are boarding an old airplane, when if fact they are flying with a carrier who maintains a young fleet.



Quiero una vida simple en Mexico. Nada mas.
User currently offlineB727FA From United States of America, joined Jun 2011, 751 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (1 year 4 months 22 hours ago) and read 12548 times:

OD brings up a good point. Put a a chipped up paint job a/c on the ramp and people notice. It matters.


My comments/opinions are my own and are not to be construed as the opinion(s) of my employer.
User currently offlinecschleic From United States of America, joined Feb 2002, 1246 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (1 year 4 months 21 hours ago) and read 11750 times:

Yes, so the tower knows which plane is which when there are 50+ moving around down on the ground.

User currently offlineskyguyB727 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (1 year 4 months 21 hours ago) and read 11631 times:

Branding is an important part of any company's marketing. Would McDonalds continue to be as successful as they are if they got rid of the golden arches and just had a black and white sign saying "Restaurant"? Branding can have a huge impact on a business' success.

User currently offlinedelta88 From United States of America, joined May 2009, 74 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (1 year 4 months 21 hours ago) and read 11562 times:
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I would also agree with Marketing Techniques. Even with AA 's new livery, its still being used to say to everyone that sees it that its the "new American". Airlines use liveries nowadays to protect aircraft and to advertise. A Few companies use winglets on aircraft fitted with them to advertise their websites. Liveries help differentiate aircraft from one airline to another.


707,717,727,738,744,752,762ER,763ER,772ER,MD82,MD-83,MD-88, DC-9-10,DC-10-10,A320
User currently onlinecosyr From United States of America, joined Jul 2012, 374 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (1 year 4 months 19 hours ago) and read 10919 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 3):

And WestPac could shed some light on how useful that is for marketing or profit generation.


User currently offlineBraybuddy From Ireland, joined Aug 2004, 5633 posts, RR: 32
Reply 16, posted (1 year 4 months 17 hours ago) and read 10288 times:

Quoting yankeejuliet (Thread starter):
With the elimination of waving galleries and observation decks, are expensive paint necessary on passenger aircraft anymore?

Airport lounges, departure lounges and aircraft all still have windows. So as long as aircraft can be seen through them, I would say YES!


User currently offlineflyingalex From Germany, joined Jul 2010, 1016 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (1 year 4 months 16 hours ago) and read 9740 times:

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 2):
And when ATC says "follow company plane to ..." and all of the planes are white ...
Quoting cschleic (Reply 12):
Yes, so the tower knows which plane is which when there are 50+ moving around down on the ground.

This part is really important. For that reason alone, aircraft ought to have some degree of distinguishing marks.

It really helps the guys in the tower sort out who is who.



Public service announcement: "It's" = "it is". To indicate posession, write "its." Looks wrong, but it's correct grammar
User currently offlineCXfirst From Norway, joined Jan 2007, 3034 posts, RR: 1
Reply 18, posted (1 year 4 months 16 hours ago) and read 9618 times:

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 4):
Branding is still important but primarily in advertising, websites etc., not on the aircraft itself. By the time people see the aircraft they've already made their purchase decision, and even if they haven't, it's doubtful the livery will have much if any impact on the customer's choice of carrier.

A passenger is booking a flight and has to choose between Airline A and Airline b. He decides to fly Airline A and is now at the airport. As he waits, he sees airline B and airline C, and airline he didn't know about. Next time he flies, he chooses between Airline A, B and C.

Advertising on planes at airports is a relatively cheap option, and do serve a purpose.

-CXfirst



From Norway, live in Australia
User currently offlineSemaex From Germany, joined Nov 2009, 823 posts, RR: 2
Reply 19, posted (1 year 4 months 14 hours ago) and read 8814 times:

Quoting cschleic (Reply 12):
Yes, so the tower knows which plane is which when there are 50+ moving around down on the ground.

I heard of a recent invention called Secundary Radar the other day. Uses Sierra-Transponders and stuff to make identification of aircraft inflight and on the ground a lot easier or even possible without having to see them. For example when it's dark, the plane is far away or the weather is misty  

Somebody mentioned that pax don't care about the livery. I think different on the matter. It's a whole lot of a deal to the people whether they board a "premium" carrier or a random airline - and the proof of doing so is usually a photo on facebook with the according - unique and well-known - livery of the respective carrier.



// You know you're an aviation enthusiast when you look at your neighbour's cars and think about fleet commonality.
User currently offlineairproxx From France, joined Jun 2008, 627 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (1 year 4 months 11 hours ago) and read 7462 times:

Quoting Semaex (Reply 19):

Somebody mentioned that pax don't care about the livery. I think different on the matter. It's a whole lot of a deal to the people whether they board a "premium" carrier or a random airline - and the proof of doing so is usually a photo on facebook with the according - unique and well-known - livery of the respective carrier.

Same opinion here. Branding and airplanes colour are all about marketing, and Airline Liveries remain a very important part of the process...
A question comes to my mind though; why airlines don't use more advertisement on aircraft liveries? I know a lot of them already does, but anyway, legacy carriers seem to be reluctant on that point.... Thoughts?



If you can meet with triumph and disaster, and treat those two impostors just the same
User currently offlineDTW2HYD From United States of America, joined Jan 2013, 1745 posts, RR: 2
Reply 21, posted (1 year 4 months 11 hours ago) and read 7233 times:

If at all technically feasible aircraft manufacturers should put LED screens in tail and on the side of fuselage, so there is no need for painting/repainting. They can display all code sharing partners logos one after another.

Same metal can be used by different airlines. No need to repaint on sublease/resale...

Just a wild thought.


User currently offlineBen175 From Australia, joined Jul 2008, 676 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (1 year 4 months 11 hours ago) and read 7172 times:

It really frustrates me when people on this site believe that the average person with no substantial aviation interest can show no knowledge or comprehension of the airline marketing and branding. It's pretty much saying aviation geeks can't tell the difference between a Daewoo and a Maserati, or Wal Mart and Nordstrum for example. I'd actually argue that to the vast majority, air travel is an interesting conversation and liveries, aircraft products, aircraft types/age, different flying experiences etc are commonly discussed amongst people.

User currently offlineBernard Shakey From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 560 posts, RR: 9
Reply 23, posted (1 year 4 months 10 hours ago) and read 6866 times:

The whole system would fall apart if there were a Groundstop to HPN.


Mindless drifter on the road, Carries such an easy load
User currently offlineB6JFKH81 From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2877 posts, RR: 7
Reply 24, posted (1 year 4 months 9 hours ago) and read 6166 times:

As someone who plays a big role at my airline when it comes to aircraft getting re-painted, I can tell you that the folks in the Brand Management and Marketing departments take aircraft appearance very seriously as it helps to create the identity of the product/service which you are trying to sell and it's the largest billboard that you have to sell your product/service.

If you think about it, airlines are very much like a lot of other industries. The airlines have a common product and service, they have pressurized aluminum cans with a bunch of seats in them to take you from point A to point B. Some have more watered-down basic service to the folks sitting in those seats (think NK, FR, G4), some have more perks (like IFE, increased seat pitch, etc.). That's on the the inside of the aluminum can where customers experience the product. BUT, you still want to differentiate yourself a little bit and help sell your product, that leads to using your free advertising space outside the aluminum can...and you get a livery as it helps create an identity.

It's not much different than the hotel industry, really. What are hotels? Buildings with a bunch of rooms that have beds in them for you to pay to sleep in. Common product. Some are very basic (watered-down interior, small room, basic cable TV and a bible in the night stand drawer), some have a lot more perks (lots of channels on the TV, movie offerings, a bar, a nice place to eat, shuttle vans, etc.). But in the end, they are a bunch of rooms with beds. That doesn't mean the hotel chains don't do their best to come up with an exterior design that fits their style. The buildings may look alike as they are hotels, but the small details like the color, shape, landscaping, signage, lighting, all help to differentiate to make their product stand out from the surrounding buildings.

Long story short, I believe that airline liveries are still quite necessary...and I'm not just saying that for job security LOL  



"If you do not learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it"
25 2008matt : I actually cannot believe some on a.net has asked this, this website would be nothing without liveries, and why would we want to ruin a great creation
26 iFlyLOTs : I would almost say that airplane liveries are more necessary now than they have been in the past. With the amount of planes there are out there now an
27 Post contains images ardian : "Business without advertising is like winking to a girl in the dark. You know you're doing it, but nobody else does." (Patsy Stone in AbFab, although
28 JBo : I would maintain that an airline's livery is still the single most important element of its brand execution, even if it's not something passengers alw
29 Post contains images airproxx : I've always wondered how it works! I've always been interested in graphic design, painting, drawing, and as a mix of my two passions, aircraft liveri
30 Post contains links and images L0VE2FLY : Very few? Really? So who's taking the thousands of aircraft photos being uploaded to aviation photography websites every day?! I'm guessing you're th
31 ZRH : What do mean with that? Here in Zurich we have two great observation decks. Bus tours where you can see the aircrafts take-off from very close. And f
32 777way : it would look cheap.
33 airproxx : Well, agreed at some point, but I think it depends on the advert you got painted on the paint.... I mean, a Mc Donalds logo jet would look cheap inde
34 SYDAIRPORTS : with LCC's growing, while legacies slowly die, liveries are probably more important now. As most LCC's don't use airbridges, passengers see the aircra
35 Wingtips56 : There have been a number of carriers that feature their reservations phone number or website prominently in their livery, so obviously they do see it
36 777way : ok I didn't realize you were talking logo jets, I was picturing ad decals stuck on aircraft like in sports.
37 Post contains links and images AeroWesty : Did someone say MickeyD's? View Large View MediumPhoto © Toni Marimon
38 zippyjet : A lot of the other replies are spot on plus, many airports have recently been making gate areas more spotter friendly. I.E large panoramic windows ha
39 Antoniemey : As a ramp agent at a small-ish airport, I can tell you that the livery of the plane helps us know when our plane has arrived. It can be hard enough t
40 Post contains images B6JFKH81 : I'm not completely sure on that as I am on the technical side of things. For the last 2 years I was THE person that inspected the paint job on every
41 yankeejuliet : [quote=B6JFKH81,reply=40] Great culture, naming of aircraft is an excellent idea. This was done at JM in honor of various Jamaican towns with historic
42 N766UA : I don't get it. The OP seriously thinks airline liveries were created for and exist solely to appease planespotters on observation decks?
43 Post contains images flyingalex : The problem with secondary radar is that it's expensive. Not very many airports have it yet. Also, the pilots in the various aircraft don't have it e
44 YYZYYT : Agreed. If the image of the brand on the airplane doesn't matter, why do all airlines feature a picture of their "best" aircraft in flight? it's an i
45 777way : Worse than that he seems be suggesting liveries should go. Seen that in pics here, fantastic look.
46 EaglePower83 : I would venture to guess that most everyday people DO care about the livery and appearance of the airplane they're flying on. Most "flying rubes" will
47 Post contains links and images infinit : Even if it is post-purchase, many still look out the window at lounges or out the aerobridges at boarding. Think of these airlines- United, Southwest,
48 BMI727 : That's true, but in that respect it matters more to have a plane that doesn't look bad rather than one that looks good. Airlines are realizing that,
49 cgnnrw : I agree 100%. Two short stories: In the 1990s I often flew KLM to the States when they still served BWI. One time I was met by my dad and my little n
50 DocLightning : Really? The only aircraft you ever see is the one you're about to board when you're going to fly? You never see airliners in other contexts? You neve
51 OA260 : Exactly 100% agree. You would be surprised how many people not connected to travel/aviation remember and know the smallest of detail when they have b
52 Post contains links and images avion660 : Absolutely ... it does carry a certain weight; a message of corporate strength, and global coverage ... View Large View MediumPhoto © Ken Iwelumo -
53 Viscount724 : I completely agree with everything you say except I disagree that the livery on the aircraft itself is very important. I just don't think that has mu
54 DocLightning : It has the same impact on purchase decisions that seeing the company logo on a random billboard on the freeway or at the airport does.
55 Braybuddy : Probably the main reason I much prefer the current BA livery over the old Landor one. The tail is simpler and bolder and stands out by a mile, even f
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