Posts: 1783
Joined: Sun May 13, 2001 11:59 pm

Poor Fleet Utilization.

Thu Apr 24, 2003 9:19 am

Maybe I do not understand about fleet utilization, but my common sense tells me a way airlines could make more money. Big airlines serving many destinations have many aircraft. I believe they could cut longhaul aircraft and not the routes they fly, as long as the route is profitable enough. Kill the ones losing money still. Think about some markets and how airlines use the planes flying these routes. Let's take the United States to South America for instance. For the deep South American routes, the planes generally leave the US late night and arrive in the morning. The plane then sits there all day until it returns at night. Another example would be from Europe to southern Africa. The plane generally leaves Europe at night and arrives in the morning. It then sits around all day and then flies back to Europe at night. A further example is between Oceania and the west coast United States. Those planes leave in the morning from Australia or New Zealand in the morning and arrive in the morning in North America. They then sit around until the late night when they return to Australia or New Zealand. None of these are massive markets, but nonetheless they exist. What if the airlines flying in those markets were to dump some of their longhaul fleet and make the planes fly more. I was thinking that instead of having it sit all day at an airport a long way from home, have it make a normal turnaround. The way this could decrease their longhaul fleet without decreasing services is that the planes would be more used far more. Think about it. Let's say a plane flights MIA-EZE on day one. It arrives day two and sits there all day. Meanwhile a plane is flying MIA-LHR that night. The first plane leaves EZE that night too and arrives in the morning of day three. If that plane flew to EZE on the night of day one and flew back the morning of day two, it would be back in MIA to fly MIA-LHR, thus having one aircraft fly what took two. I known it wouldn't cut the longhaul fleet in half. That example is a very basic one and it would get more complicated when you consider all routes, but efficiency would be increased and costs cut because of fewer planes to operate. I realize that business people might like the redeye flights because they do not miss any work when flying, but the airlines are in a bad situation financially right now and need everything they can to remedy this. This just one idea. What are your thoughts? It drives me nuts to think a plane is on the ground all day not being used.

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Posts: 1663
Joined: Wed Jun 23, 1999 9:45 am

RE: Poor Fleet Utilization.

Thu Apr 24, 2003 9:30 am

This topic has been discussed before. For example, flights from the USA to South America tend to arrive in the early am. This is the schedule most desired by business, and leisure travelers. Conversely, this also applies to the return flight back to the USA. Travelers like the early am arrival, it gives them the whole day in the USA for whatever business, etc. Therefore the plane spends all day in South America, not the greatest aircraft utilization, but it meets customer demand best.
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Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2000 12:00 pm

RE: Poor Fleet Utilization.

Thu Apr 24, 2003 3:55 pm

Wait, but if the plane is flying at night, what difference does it make? Say a plane leaves at 6pm and arrives at 6am, sits on the ground till 6pm the next night and leaves and arrives the next morning at 6am. How is that not getting 12 hours of ultilization out of an aircraft? That could be more than what smaller domestic aircraft like the MD-80 fly in a day.

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