I have a question regarding how airlines pay for planes. What sort of payment plans do airlines work out with aircraft manufacturers? For example, is it like my 4-year car loan or my 30-year house mortgage?
Secondly if airlines are flying planes that are paid for, when does it come time to buy new planes? For example, let's assume that Delta's L-1011 planes are fully paid for. Granted, they pay for a flight crew of 3 and less fuel effeciency and arguably more maintenance on an older jet. But certainly this is still far less expensive than buying a new plane.
many poke fun at Northwest for flying aging planes and surely they are taking a beating on fuel bills as their less economical planes suck up the fuel. But from a financial standpoint, is it cheaper than buying new planes?
I know that many of you will argue that newer planes are safer and that's not the point I am wondering about. But fomr a financial standpoint, what would you rather have: 3 brand new 757's that you will be paying for for a long time, or 3 aging 727's that are completely "paid off." Again, from a FINANCIAL standpoint only (not load capacity, reputation, maintenance, number of crew members, etc...)