N62NA
Topic Author
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AA Positioning Flight?

Tue Dec 14, 2004 8:03 am

Trying not to contaminate the excellent "MIA / AA 25 years..." thread, so I thought I would start a new one!

MAH4546 stated:


It is a positioning flight. It is not there because people like 777s on DFW-LAX. AA simply doesn't need to position the 777 into/out of LAX anymore. Just like AA's new MIA-JFK 777 flight, which starts this week, is a positioning flight as well.

Time for me to learn something (I hope!).

What is a "positioning flight" anyway?

I (proudly I might add!) announced a few months ago on here that AA was introducing T7 services MIA-JFK-MIA and that it appears that they are just using a 777 that might otherwise be sitting on the ground in JFK for 8 hours or so and using it on the "heavy demand" JFK-MIA route.

So, the question is, is this a positioning flight? Because the plane starts in MIA and Ends in MIA, I would think that would not be a positioning flight.

But, whadda I know anyway!  Smile
 
Sabena332
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RE: AA Positioning Flight?

Tue Dec 14, 2004 8:07 am

What is a "positioning flight" anyway?

For example: A Lufthansa 346 arrives in FRA from YYZ in the morning but the very same aircraft has to fly MUC-PVG in the evening, the flight between FRA and MUC is a positioning flight. Sometimes they do it without passengers but sometimes they also sell it as a regular flight and you can have luck to fly a widebody within Germany.

Patrick
NZ1's mother is a disgusting crack-whore and his father is a worthless alcoholic!
 
N62NA
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RE: AA Positioning Flight?

Tue Dec 14, 2004 8:16 am

Thanks Sabena332!

So the MIA-JFK-MIA 777 flight is NOT a positioning flight.
 
AAR90
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RE: AA Positioning Flight?

Tue Dec 14, 2004 8:21 am

So, the question is, is this a positioning flight? Because the plane starts in MIA and Ends in MIA, I would think that would not be a positioning flight.

Nope. The plane is not needed in MIA, but can be "positioned" to JFK as a "spare" acft to "protect" one or more JFK flights for a while. If not used, it will again be "positioned" back to MIA for its flights. Positioning flights are simply flights that are flown to position an acft for further use (a lot of late night/early morning flying is to position an acft for the next day's flying). Now, if you know you're going to be doing this on a regular basis, why not sell seats on the positioning flights? You're going to spend the money to move the plane already, so any revenue you can put on it reduces that expense... if you make a profit so much the better.  Big thumbs up

My first year with AA I flew a lot of last-flight-of-day DC10s DFW-ELP, minimum crew rest layover followed by ELP-DFW. Average pax on both legs was 50 (definitely a money loser). OTOH, the cost to park the DC10 at ELP was supposedly <20% the cost to park it at DFW.... hence the "positioning" flights.  Wink/being sarcastic
*NO CARRIER* -- A Naval Aviator's worst nightmare!
 
N62NA
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RE: AA Positioning Flight?

Tue Dec 14, 2004 8:54 am

And thank you too, AAR90!

So, if the 777 in question flies MIA-JFK in the afternoon and it's "needed" at JFK, what happens to the folks (like me in 3 weeks) who are scheduled to fly it on it's turnaround back to MIA that evening?
 
planespotting
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RE: AA Positioning Flight?

Tue Dec 14, 2004 9:23 am

My boss used to take a sunday night flight on NW when he worked there from ATL-MSP. He said it was usually a DC-10 but sometimes was swapped with a 757, still pretty good digs.
Do you like movies about gladiators?
 
NikonDFW
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RE: Airlines Of Yesterday

Tue Dec 14, 2004 9:34 am

The DFW-LAX 777 flight#2421 can be looked at as a back-up 777 in case the LAX-NRT 777 is running very late into LAX from NRT, or developes a maintenance issue while on the ground at LAX.
 
AAR90
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RE: AA Positioning Flight?

Tue Dec 14, 2004 10:32 am

So, if the 777 in question flies MIA-JFK in the afternoon and it's "needed" at JFK, what happens to the folks (like me in 3 weeks) who are scheduled to fly it on it's turnaround back to MIA that evening?

Probably nothing. AA international flights have very strict maintenance requirements as to what AA will permit leaving the USA. Much stricter than a standard domestic flight. Domestic 777 flights are all scheduled for "positioning" reasons to protect the international schedule (AA doesn't like the term "spare" and prefers to use "schedule protection aircraft"). For example: an inoperative APU is cause to ground an international flight, but domestically we can fly with inop APUs for days at a time (lots of divert options).  Wink/being sarcastic

If the "broken" airplane can be fixed quickly... great. If not... well that's why they flew the positioning flight to begin with. You'll also see these somewhat regularly scheduled flights when the acft routing just doesn't work out perfectly. It is a way of routing the limited number of 777s to/from major maintenance stations. As I posted in the other thread, I suspect the LAX positioning flight are going away because it is more economical (compared to daily flights to/from DFW or MIA) to overnight a 777 at LAX to protect all the LAX and SJC 777 international flights.
*NO CARRIER* -- A Naval Aviator's worst nightmare!
 
aa777jr
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RE: AA Positioning Flight?

Tue Dec 14, 2004 10:36 am

Have taken the #2421 flight from DFW-LAX twice. Both times I was on the T7 and they weren't using it for a backup at LAX. Great flight, and exceptional service both times.

AA777jr
A liberal is a man who is right most of the time, but he's right too soon.
 
manu
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RE: AA Positioning Flight?

Tue Dec 14, 2004 11:45 am

Once I went from ORD to DFW on a 777 with AA. It was my first and only time on a 777. Beautiful aircraft and a real treat of a flight. I'm guessing it was a "schedule protection aircraft" flight then, given the load (this was in mid-2001).
 
AAR90
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RE: AA Positioning Flight?

Tue Dec 14, 2004 10:08 pm

Have taken the #2421 flight from DFW-LAX twice. Both times I was on the T7 and they weren't using it for a backup at LAX.

My first reaction was a sarcastic: "well how would you know?"  Laugh out loud But here is how it works in real life at LAX:

AA2421 DFW-LAX scheduled arrival is 1141. The plane is scheduled to sit about 1 hour and return to DFW as AA2446 at 1240. It is not just a coincidence that AA169 LAX-NRT is scheduled to depart at 1225. Having arrived at 1005, that gives LAX maintenance about 1+30 to fix any problem(s) or decide to swap planes... just about the time AA2421 arrives. So AA2421's plane is scheduled to sit on the ground just long enough (they will hold its departure if necessary to ensure AA169 gets off the ground ok) to fill its role as "schedule protection" for AA169 LAX-NRT.
*NO CARRIER* -- A Naval Aviator's worst nightmare!

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