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How Common Are Complete A/C Substitutions?

Tue Jun 25, 2002 8:27 am

I am flying a 757 tomorow, and I dont like the plane to much, and I was just wondering if they might substitute a 763 or something else...Thanks for all info...
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RE: How Common Are Complete A/C Substitutions?

Tue Jun 25, 2002 8:39 am

In my experience in being a passenger, not too common.

BUT, I did once fly on a DC-10 from DFW to SAT, it was substituted for an That was one empty DC-10.
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RE: How Common Are Complete A/C Substitutions?

Tue Jun 25, 2002 8:54 am

Not very common..depends on the airline......but the 757 is pretty great..I've flown on an AA 752 on a four-hour flight and it was great....Unique-looking shouldn't be too bad......
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RE: How Common Are Complete A/C Substitutions?

Tue Jun 25, 2002 12:17 pm

It seems to happen to me all the time. The most recent time was last month when I was going to YOW from YYZ on Air Canada for a PC Youth convention. My flight to YOW was supposed to be a A321, but they put me on an A320 (luckily for me, it was the newest one in Air Canada's fleet, only a couple weeks old). My return flight was supposed to be a 763, but the plane I rode home was an A319.

Air Canada (and Canadian too) often changed their aircraft to fit demand, when spares were available. I would say 1/5 of the flights I have ever taken were on a/c different from the published schedule.
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RE: How Common Are Complete A/C Substitutions?

Tue Jun 25, 2002 12:43 pm

On behalf of UAL we sometimes subsitute our B747 on our flights from hubs on international routes . Depending on the bookings , just the other week , We subsituted the normal B777 with our B747 on IAD-LHR . Hope this helped you in answering your question!
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RE: How Common Are Complete A/C Substitutions?

Tue Jun 25, 2002 12:43 pm

In my experience... domestic flights don't commonly substitute plane types all that often. If there is any substitution at all, my experience has been that it is usually the same plane type (ie. a 757 for another 757 with a mechanical problem). Subsitutions are more common with international flights. PAL is really nototrious for this. Sometimes they advertise a 747 for the flight and then change it to a 340 last minute and vice versa.
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RE: How Common Are Complete A/C Substitutions?

Tue Jun 25, 2002 1:03 pm

Major substitutions for domestic routes don't happen often, especially from a smaller plane to a larger plane (b/c usually there aren't just spare pilots laying around, at least from what I've heard). For example, you probably won't go from a MD88 to a 767 b/c most of the time the MD88 pilots aren't certified for the 767, and since it's also on a seniority basis, they couldn't fly the 767 anyway (at least this is what I heard from a DL captain who was sitting in coach on his way home from work, explaining this to some woman who once had her plane changed). A change would probably be known about a while before the scheduled flight departure time, as new pilots/crew would be needed. I've never been on a/c change on a domestic route.
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RE: How Common Are Complete A/C Substitutions?

Tue Jun 25, 2002 1:31 pm

Question. Are you speaking of different aircraft types for a flight? Or just swaping similar planes due to a mech, or lateness?

If you speaking about changing the same type aircraft for a flight this happens really often. We did it twice yesterday, one due to mechanical the other was due to the inbound being 3 hours late, again mechanical. A320's nd A319's get switched the most due to the commonality of the crews.

On the other hand a complete change of gauge is rather rare. 2 years ago UA changed an A320 to a 767 due to several cancelations. That was the last time I've seen UA do drastic A/C sub. AC however has used Tango 737's and AC mainline A319's to sub for the Jazz Bae146 or CRJ coming up lame.
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RE: How Common Are Complete A/C Substitutions?

Tue Jun 25, 2002 2:14 pm

I would agree that it's more common to substitute on international flights, because, in many cases, the airplane ourbound drops off pax, then often turns around and comes right back.

For domestic flights this is rarely as simple; most of the schedule is not composed of "out and back" flights; for example, a given 757 might go SJC-ORD-MIA-LAX-DFW-SJC (with multple crews, of course) during the course of its travels. Thus, while substituting a 738 on the "initial" SJC-ORD leg if loads are really light might make sense, downstream, it becomes a possible issue. While it's simple enough to juggle our one hypothetical flight, if you multiply it by a days' movements, you'd have a whole project just tracking things. And I suspect that the cost of having to rebook passengers downline if you can't come up with enough seats is higher than the costs of flying empty seats (assuming it's not a habitual thing).

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RE: How Common Are Complete A/C Substitutions?

Tue Jun 25, 2002 2:29 pm

It is pretty rare but the same crew could operate the 767 since the cockpit crews are interchangeable. It happened to me on a Us Airways flight from CLT-PHL where it was scheduled to be a 767 but switched to a 757 I think because the bigger a/c was needed elsewhere.

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