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Why "Jumbo"?

Fri Apr 16, 2004 11:07 pm

Not sure if the Boeing 747 is called "Jumbo" in other countries, but this is the case in Brazil.

I am very curious to know, first of all, if such nick is a worldwide popular one and, secondly, where and why is it originally from?

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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Fri Apr 16, 2004 11:15 pm

Jumbo is not used in the US. If you hear the word it is generally someone from a country other than the US.

Widebody is the term most used for a big aircraft. ie: 747, DC-10, L1011, A330 etc.

The 747 is usually called a whale by crew-members.
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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Fri Apr 16, 2004 11:16 pm

"Jumbo" or "Jumbo jet".


The dimensions and number of the seats inspired the journalists so much that they soon called him the "jumbo jet".


What is the difference between a blond young woman and a Jumbo-jet?

Answer: Not everybody have been inside a Jumbo-jet.
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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Fri Apr 16, 2004 11:22 pm

In the early 70s, on a promotional show at The Talk of The Town in London, we gave Travel Agents a spectacular breakfast show to express why BOAC's 747s were that much better than anybody else's. At least we didn't have engines seizing during the early flights!

The name of that gigantic show was JUMBOAC!

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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Fri Apr 16, 2004 11:32 pm

Hi guys!!

I think in the UK some people call a 747 as Jumbo Jet...

Am I wrong?

I heard this version around here before... Smile/happy/getting dizzy


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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Fri Apr 16, 2004 11:33 pm

Jumbo is not used in the US. If you hear the word it is generally someone from a country other than the US.

Back in the '70s, the term Jumbo or Jumbo Jet was indeed used in the USA...
at least in layman's terms.

The reason (this is just a guess) that the 747 is/was referred to as a jumbo was because, at the time, (and still is if one discounts the A380) it was the largest commercial airliner.

If you watch any movies from the 70's and even early '80s that involve airplanes, the term 'jumbo' or 'jumbo jet' is almost always used in reference to the 747.

Widebody is a more broad-ranged term describing ALL twin-aisled aircraft.
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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Fri Apr 16, 2004 11:37 pm

The term was coined by the news media back when Boeing announced plans to build the plane. The news media also coined the phase "Super Bowl". As you know, it also stuck.
The news media, after 34 years, still refers to wide body airplanes as jumbo jets. I never thought intelligent people were employed by the news media. Their terminology of wide body airplanes reinforces that.
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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Sat Apr 17, 2004 12:16 am

Jumbo was an Elephant´s name in the London Zoo in the 1860s.

As for the etymological roots, there are two theories:
from "Jumbe", Swahili for "boss", "chief", "large man" or anything large and/or impressive.

Daniel Smile
from "jambo", Swahili for "hello"
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RE: Where To I Go To Complain About A BBC Story?

Sat Apr 17, 2004 12:44 am

iliteration-Jumbo Jet (the J and J sounds). So it sounds catchy? Well, thats about the est I can come up with
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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Sat Apr 17, 2004 12:50 am

I am sorry but your "joke" was tasteless and offensive..."Herr" Bofedrik.
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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Sat Apr 17, 2004 1:01 am

Bo Fredrik:
Xuse me, but you seems to be the JUMBO moron inhere  Big grin

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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Sat Apr 17, 2004 1:17 am

Not sure of the Jumbo origin, but to your average Mr Smith, everything big that can fly is a Jumbo Jet...

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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Sat Apr 17, 2004 1:17 am

Airsicknessbag has the right answer.

"Jumbo" was the name of a famous elephant, and the name subsequently became used to describe other things on a large, or elephantine, scale.

It wasn't a great leap of the imagination to associate the word "jumbo" with the aircraft and, of course, coin the phrase "jumbo jet".
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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Sat Apr 17, 2004 2:08 am

Crew usually call it the "74" or the humpback....or at BA they do anyway!
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RE: Why "Jumbo"?

Sat Apr 17, 2004 8:32 am

Although 'Jumbo Jet' is generally used to refer to the 747, I have heard it used to describe DC-10s, L1011s, A300s and even 767s. When you look at the size of these aircraft compared to the 707 or the DC-8, the term is quite understandable...

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RE: Where To I Go To Complain About A BBC Story?

Sat Apr 17, 2004 8:38 pm

well at the fyer event in LHR the other, the senior 1st officer for BA call then the "400"

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