Now, airlines are dramatically upgrading their fleet. Most are going exclusively with either Boeing (AA, CO, DL) or Airbus (US). But some are using both companies for their new aircraft, either short-haul from one and long-haul from the other (UAL), or mix-matched all over the place (SQ, TWA). For the airlines using both companies, I thought that airlines wouldn't want to do this for fleet commonality reasons, such as crew training and replacement parts. A look at some of the US airlines:
TWA: Ordered both B717s and A318s. This seems a bit odd, ordering such a large aircraft from both companies.
Continental: Ordering all aircraft from Boeing, including NG737s, 777s, and 767-400s
Delta: Ordering NG737s, had plans to order 777s (we all know that story!), and 767-400s. So they are going with Boeing.
US Airways: The only US airline going exclusively with Airbus. Ordering A320/A319s for their shorthaul aircraft. A330s coming on line later this year. Do you think the A321 could find a place in this airline's fleets?
United: One of the one going with both. Going with Airbus for shorthaul, and going with 777s for longhaul.
American: Boeing. NG737s and 777s
Northwest: Does anyone know what is happening with NW? They have made no announcements on major fleet plans.
So, this pretty much sums up the US airlines. The question still stands: is fleet commonality important. Why/why not? If so, why are airlines like SQ ordering A330s/A340s/777s?
Your comments welcomed!
Fly US Airways