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1337Delta764
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UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 8:29 am

This is a hard one. If United exits bankruptcy, are they more likely to order the 787 or A350? Note that I do not intend to create this as a poll, this is just to discuss the possibilities.

I think that UAL would be more likely to go with the 787, as they don't operate Airbus widebodies.
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BOS2LAF
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 9:12 am

IMHO it depends on whether or not Airbus helps UA with its exit financing as was rumored. I don't know whether thats been decided or not, I'm not up to date on that.
 
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Stitch
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 9:19 am

If I had to put money down, I'd put it down on the 787.

  • UA has a strong relationship with Boeing.
  • They have been interested in the 772LR and 773ER, as well as the 777F. The 787 will offer them closer cockpit commonality with these widebodies (as well as the 748 if they go for it) then the A358/A359.
  • The A358 is too big to replace their 763s
  • The A359 offers them no additional capacity above their 772s
  • Neither the A358 or A359 will probably be as efficient for their hub-to-Hawaii ops compared to a 787-3 since they are designed for longer ranges with higher MTOWs.

That being said, I will not state that the A350 has no chance.

UA could keep their two-class 772s and 763ERs around to service Hawaii. However, a 763ER is a bit of overkill for Hawaii in terms of range, so an A358 might very well offer similar or superior economics thanks to greater capacity. It would do a decent enough job to replace the two-class 772s.

A358s would allow them to increase capacity on the routes served by three-class 763ERs and A359s would allow them to maintain capacity on routes served by their three-class 772ERs. And the largest routes could be served with 748Is replacing the 744s.
 
UnitedTristar
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 9:33 am

Quoting BOS2LAF (Reply 1):
IMHO it depends on whether or not Airbus helps UA with its exit financing as was rumored.

This never happened. UA did not choose any Equity financing (i.e. the airline would be owned by the financiers), they took debt financing from names like J.P.Morgan and Citi. They just need to pay off the debts with a PO or earnings. Noone has controlling interest until the new PO.

-m

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SFORunner
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 9:44 am

Quoting BOS2LAF (Reply 1):
IMHO it depends on whether or not Airbus helps UA with its exit financing as was rumored. I don't know whether thats been decided or not, I'm not up to date on that.

Also dependent on who is brave enough to provide post-BK financing for the purchase of new planes. UA could seek a new line of credit.

Would it be as attractive as funds/planes packaged as exit financing?
 
FriendlySkies
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 9:44 am

The 787 fits too well at UA not to happen. A350 is simply too big considering UA's large 777 fleet, which is only 10 years old for the oldest example. I expect a 787 order by the end of next year.
 
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 9:56 am

Being out of bankruptcy and being ordering new, expensive planes are two different things.

Just out of Chapter 11, still with a heavy debt burdon, the UAL credit rating will be very low. That means very high interest rates on loans. It also means that leasing companies will be reluctant to deliver new planes at competitive leasing rates since they risk to have the planes back to desert storage long time before the leasing contracts expire.

Any additional UAL capacity during the next several years, expect that to be pretty well worn, used planes from the Boeing stable.

UAL may be on the right track, and may be on the way to earn money. But with the heavy debts they are financially weaker than the competitors. In case of a "storm" (like for instance 9/11) the storm will down the weakest trees first. The money lenders know that and put a price on it.

Money lenders are not in the market for saving struggled airlines. They are in the market for earning money. That means:
- low risk = competitive interest rates and ordinary leasing rates
- high risk = high interest rates and high leasing rates, especially on planes which are expensive to park in the desert.
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aeropiggot
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 10:52 am

Quote:
This is a hard one. If United exits bankruptcy, are they more likely to order the 787 or A350? Note that I do not intend to create this as a poll, this is just to discuss the possibilities.

I think that UAL would be more likely to go with the 787, as they don't operate Airbus widebodies.

UAL will be very price sensitive for a while after exiting bankruptcy. So Airbus can compete on price and delivery slots against Boeing. But UAl is very happy with the 777, and so Boeing has a lot of good will going into any competition with Airbus.
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PlaneDane
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 11:03 am

Quoting 1337Delta764 (Thread starter):
This is a hard one. If United exits bankruptcy, are they more likely to order the 787 or A350?

I'll go against the grain here and speculate that the A350 has a future at United. After all, with the recent string of sales campaign losses, I imagine Airbus will really start making some amazing deals...

Besides, ever since United went with Airbus for narrowbodies years ago, it seems like the relationship between the airline and its parent (Boeing), has been much different and maybe strained.

I could very likely be wrong, though, and maybe there are some United employees out there who could set me straight on this...
 
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 11:38 am

Quoting PlaneDane (Reply 10):
Besides, ever since United went with Airbus for narrowbodies years ago, it seems like the relationship between the airline and its parent (Boeing), has been much different and maybe strained.

United may be getting rid of the Boeing narrow bodies but United still flies only Boeing Long Haul aircraft. United may be pissed off about the 757 though. I feel many airlines are pissed about that.

But I doubt United favors Airbus over Boeing and vice versa. United will do its research (more likely Lufthansa will do the research and show United which aircraft truely is the better one) and will purchase the aircraft(s) needed to successfully compete and make a profit and the one with the lowest cost per passenger and highest revenue potential.
 
FriendlySkies
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 11:45 am

Quoting Wdleiser (Reply 11):
...will purchase the aircraft(s) needed to successfully compete and make a profit and the one with the lowest cost per passenger and highest revenue potential.

Which will be the 787.  Wink

(I'm going to get chewed out for that...)

As far as UA's relationship with Boeing, they have NEVER been an all-Boeing airline. Even in the early days, they flew mostly Douglas propliners, they flew DC-8s and DC-10s in the 60s-80s, hell they even flew the Caravelle. But, just as they have been very happy with the A32S, they have been exceptionally pleased with their Boeing products, especially the 777.
 
roseflyer
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 11:55 am

Quoting AeroPiggot (Reply 9):
UAL will be very price sensitive for a while after exiting bankruptcy. So Airbus can compete on price and delivery slots against Boeing. But UAl is very happy with the 777, and so Boeing has a lot of good will going into any competition with Airbus.

Actually Airbus isn't in a position to compete as well on price as Boeing. The strong Euro is hurting Airbus because about 50% of their costs have to be paid out in Euros while all airplanes are sold in Dollar terms. This means that with the current exchange rate, Boeing has up to a 15% discount on certain manufacturing costs. Airbus has to hedge against the exchange rate fluctuation. So in reality Boeing has a price advantage assuming other costs are the same.

But all things equal, this will be a good battle. Either plane could fit into UA's future fleet plans. It does depend on price, and if one company can give some exit financing to secure a deal then obviously there is an advantage.
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StevenUhl777
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 1:05 pm

Quoting 1337Delta764 (Thread starter):
If United exits bankruptcy

I think that applies more to DL these days...  Yeah sure

My bet is on the 787 as well, however another a-netter who listened to Tilton speak not too long ago reported that UA will not be ordering aircraft until 2010.

We'll see.
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 1:09 pm

Quoting RoseFlyer (Reply 13):
The strong Euro is hurting Airbus because about 50% of their costs have to be paid out in Euros while all airplanes are sold in Dollar terms. This means that with the current exchange rate, Boeing has up to a 15% discount on certain manufacturing costs. Airbus has to hedge against the exchange rate fluctuation.

And they are hedging magnificently, which has allowed them to eat essentially all of the currency differences at least through 2007. After that, a strong Euro/weak dollar could start to hurt them.
 
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 5:34 pm

Because of the success of the 777, I am sure when push comes to shove, UA will go with 787, but like most carriers they will show a keen interest in both, drive the price down and then do a deal...........that said, I think any deal is a long way off, but nothing would suprise me, if they did a major order after exiting CH11.........If they do not get slots until 2010, maybe they feel they need to get there foot on the door!!!  Confused
 
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 9:57 pm

Quoting Stitch (Reply 15):
And they are hedging magnificently, which has allowed them to eat essentially all of the currency differences at least through 2007. After that, a strong Euro/weak dollar could start to hurt them.

I wrote a paper on this once. From my research then I remember that Airbus buys options when an order is placed so that when it comes time to produce an airplane, Airbus actually has the costs that it expected to when the contract was signed. Since it is often about two years between a contract getting signed and a plane being built, Airbus needs to protect itself from currency fluctuation so that a sudden rise in the value of the Euro won't hurt them. If they didn't buy options then they might have to face some serious losses because the prices of the planes are already locked in.

Overall Airbus has options set for the contracts that it signed in the past years which is why it can afford to still sell its planes very cheaply to jetBlue, etc. However this will affect the current market and how far down in costs Airbus can go compared to Boeing.
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zvezda
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 10:17 pm

The B787 has the advantages of smaller size, lower production costs, and convertability between B787-3 and B787-8. All of these will make it easier for Boeing to secure a UA deal.
 
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 20, 2005 11:12 pm

IMHO, UA is more likely to order Boeing widebodies (including the 787) for the following reasons:

1. When Boeing moved its HQ to Chicago, I remembered reading a newspaper article that discussed how Boeing was stunned when UA picked A319/A320. For years, Boeing had taken UA for granted. One of the reasons (accordingly to the news article) Chicago was picked to be the Boeing HQ, was to be close to UA.

2. I have been told that UA is seriously considering a direct flight into BKK from North America. Apparently, based on UA's internal data, there is enough traffic to justify such a service, and also freeing up one additional NRT slot for future route expansion. I concur with the earlier post on potential 772LR order that would allow UA to fly US-BKK directly. In addition, ORD-DEL is still on the table that may also use 772LR.

3. GE Capital is providing a portion of exit financing for UA, and I expect this will also play into the fleet decision such as 772LR, 773ER and 747-8I, although this reason is not as significant as others in the decision making process.

4. UA may place a 787 order with delivery dates past 2011 to secure slots and favorable pricing and financing from Boeing and GE, although it may not have the financial resources in the immediate 2 years after exiting Ch. 11.

5. UA is pushing hard to gain additional flights into PRC through the US-China aviation pact which allows each country to further increase frequencies gradually over the next several years. In addition to CAN, another destination further inland is also being considered. Although overall frequencies will be increased into PRC, it does not mean UA will be able to fly Multiple 777s into PVG or PEK. Based on the anticipated passenger demands into PRC, 747-8I is definitely being considered for routes to China and HKG.

6. Similar to the views expressed by others earlier, 787 is a right size as replacement.

7. Star Alliance evaluation of 787/350 is still in process, although I think it is more of a PR typed project due to the fact that NH, NZ, LOT and AC have ordered 787 while TAP and US have ordered A350. SQ and LH are the next two in the queue to place orders, and I am not sure if these orders will have any influence on UA's decision.

[Edited 2005-12-20 15:14:43]

[Edited 2005-12-20 15:16:39]
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Wed Dec 21, 2005 1:15 am

Quoting UALMMFlyer (Reply 20):
7. Star Alliance evaluation of 787/350 is still in process, although I think it is more of a PR typed project due to the fact that NH, NZ, LOT and AC have ordered 787 while TAP and US have ordered A350. SQ and LH are the next two in the queue to place orders, and I am not sure if these orders will have any influence on UA's decision.

UA's longterm goal, along with LH, is Star commonality....the recent announcement of a transition to a common computer structure is just another step. I would not be suprised to see a similar aircraft buy between the two largest members of Star. Whichever it will be it will be a move away from Pratt on the widebodies.... Smile
 
UnitedTristar
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 8:37 am

Quoting StevenUhl777 (Reply 14):
Tilton speak not too long ago reported that UA will not be ordering aircraft until 2010.

No, what Glen said is that he didn't see UA taking on any new aircraft types until at least 2010. This did not mean that he didn't think UA would expand any current fleets. Also he didn't say that they would not order the aircraft before then...just that they wouldn't be here till then.

-m

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MidnightMike
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 9:44 am

This could be interesting, just my opinion, but, if United can get the Union to have same pilots fly both the 777 & the 787, you will see United ordering the 787.

Boeing has been marketing the 777 & the 787 as a family, the training has been arranged so that it will take 5 days to go from the 777 to the 787. If the same pilots can fly the 777 & the 787, instant order for Boeing, also, it takes 8 days to go from the 757/767 to the 787.....
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UnitedTristar
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 10:07 am

Quoting MidnightMike (Reply 23):
This could be interesting, just my opinion, but, if United can get the Union to have same pilots fly both the 777 & the 787, you will see United ordering the 787.

I am sure UA would love the 777 pilots to fly for the price of the current 767 pilots pay but there are basically 3 pay scales at UA. One for 744/777 fleets, one for the 767/757 and one for the narrowbody fleets. For this reason I don't see those lines being mixed at all.

It would definitely be a great to lower some pays but I don't see it happening.

Now for transitions the reduced training costs will be great!

-m



[Edited 2005-12-26 02:11:36]
 
trex8
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 10:26 am

Quoting UALMMFlyer (Reply 20):
One of the reasons (accordingly to the news article) Chicago was picked to be the Boeing HQ, was to be close to UA.

oh pleeez!!. Boeing wanted to be in the midwest or somewhere more central IIRC it was ultimately a choice between Chicago and Dallas, I guess that means Boeing wrote off American!
They went to Chicago because Mayor Daly gave them millions in tax write offs. If they really wanted to be "close " to UAL, they would have picked their HQ building in Schaumburg, its a heck of a lot quicker down I90 to UAs HQ from the site Boeing looked at in Schaumburg than from the Loop!
 
whitehatter
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 10:38 am

Quoting 1337Delta764 (Thread starter):
This is a hard one. If United exits bankruptcy, are they more likely to order the 787 or A350? Note that I do not intend to create this as a poll, this is just to discuss the possibilities.

Neither for a few years.

UA needs to get on a stable footing and make profits before they can buy or lease anything. Same as credit card companies charging extra for bad credit customers, UA would find it hard to finance a purchase.

We keep coming back to this, but it's not changed since last week. A company which went under through its losses and debts cannot afford to spend money it does not yet have. Remember TW and the ruinous rates they had to pay for the 717?
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halls120
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 10:57 am

Quoting WhiteHatter (Reply 26):
Same as credit card companies charging extra for bad credit customers, UA would find it hard to finance a purchase.

While people with bad credit pay higher interest rates, people that have emerged from bankruptcy often are inundated with extensions of credit from banks and other lenders.

My guess is that once UA emerges from bankruptcy, both A and B will be knocking at their door offering aircraft for post 2010 delivery, as UA needs both a 733 and 762 replacement.
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Stitch
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 11:01 am

The A319 and A320 do a nice job of replacing the 733/735 and UA has already found a replacement for the 762 - their specialized p.s. 752s.
 
aircanada014
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 12:18 pm

There's already a post somewhere about what airlines will order 787 or 350.
We all believe it would be 787 since they have 767s.
 
MidnightMike
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 1:57 pm

Quoting Unitedtristar (Reply 24):
I am sure UA would love the 777 pilots to fly for the price of the current 767 pilots pay but there are basically 3 pay scales at UA. One for 744/777 fleets, one for the 767/757 and one for the narrowbody fleets. For this reason I don't see those lines being mixed at all.

It would definitely be a great to lower some pays but I don't see it happening.

Now for transitions the reduced training costs will be great!

I never said anything about pay, but, I see what you are saying about the different pay scales for the different equipment. My line of thinking is the reduced training costs & better utilization of the pilots.
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FCKC
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 2:26 pm

Perhaps all will depend how they will restructure after exit C11.
Are we sure they will be the same kind of airline ?
Somebody wrote above that the A350 will not be as efficient as the 787 for their HNL hub.
How do you know the performances of this plane as the design is not yet totally frozen (should be in March) , and we do not really know how it will perform ?
Always strange people know more than the manufacturer !!!!!!!!!!!!
 
MidnightMike
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 3:12 pm

Quoting FCKC (Reply 31):
Somebody wrote above that the A350 will not be as efficient as the 787 for their HNL hub.
How do you know the performances of this plane as the design is not yet totally frozen (should be in March) , and we do not really know how it will perform ?
Always strange people know more than the manufacturer !!!!!!!!!!!!

Where did that comment come from? It was not in this thread?
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tu154
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Mon Dec 26, 2005 4:52 pm

I vote for the 787........
boeing widebody, airbus narrow body fleet post UA b/k.



and oh, by the way........Tilton won't be ordering any new a/c.....I'm sure he'll be replaced once UA is out of b/k.
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Stitch
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 12:07 am

Quoting FCKC (Reply 29):
Somebody wrote above that the A350 will not be as efficient as the 787 for their HNL hub.
How do you know the performances of this plane as the design is not yet totally frozen (should be in March) , and we do not really know how it will perform?

That would be me, and I'm just going with the published figures Boeing and Airbus provide for the 787-3 and the 787-8.

And do note that I did say in Reply #2 I thought the A358 could work for Hawai'i, at least when replacing the 772s, but now that I've had the chance to think about it, I believe Hawai'i ops favor the 787.

The A358 is designed for a stage length of around then 8,500nm where the 787-3 is designed for a stage-length of around 3500nm. The 787-3's wing is better optimized for shorter stange-lengths and she weighs close to 200,000mt less at MTOW even with near identical maximum fuel loads (33,000 US gallons vs. 37,000 US gallons). Now, part of that extra weight is payload (the A358 can carry 50,000 more pounds of payload), but that still gives the 787-3 well over 100,000 lbs weight-savings. And the Trent 1053-77 engines used on the 787-3 are lower-thrust units (and I expect the GENx engine is, as well), so the weight savings, the better-optimized wing, and the less-powerful (and thirsty) engines should do wonders for fuel efficiency on those stage-lengths vs. the A358.

Now 3,500nm is too short for ORD-HNL (and IAD-HNL if UA ever launches it), but they might be able to do it with less payload or they may need to go to 787-8s. If they do need the 788, then yes, the A358 becomes a player since it could replace the 772 fleet that flies to HNL. However, most of UA's Hawai'i' fleet is either 757s or 767s due to traffic patterns so the 787-3 is a much better fit in terms of capacity as the A358s just carry too many people and weigh so much more. And while the same "too many people" problem applies to the 787-3 vs. the 752, and the 787-3's MTOW is about 100,000lbs over the 752s, the A358 is twice as heavy and carries some twice the folks. So UA would need to dramatically boost traffic and revenue patterns to both fill the A358 and overcome it's higher trip-costs.

Now, if Airbus comes up with an A350-700 that weighs 100 tons less and has a wing optimized for sub-3500nm stage lengths, then yes, I believe the A350 would work for Hawai'i.  Wink

Now, UA could operate the 787-3 and the A358, but that just increases complexity and cost. Better to try and do it all with the 787-3 or run both the 787-3 and 787-8.

[Edited 2005-12-26 16:11:26]
 
zvezda
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 12:31 am

Quoting Unitedtristar (Reply 22):
I am sure UA would love the 777 pilots to fly for the price of the current 767 pilots pay but there are basically 3 pay scales at UA. One for 744/777 fleets, one for the 767/757 and one for the narrowbody fleets. For this reason I don't see those lines being mixed at all.

UA will not order either the A350 or the B787 until ALPA agree that they can be flown on the B757/B767 pay scale. Therefore, UA must position any A350/B787 purchases as B767 replacements, not as B777 replacements. That means there will be strong pressure on UA to choose the smallest A350/B787 class aircraft available. That would be the B787-3 and perhaps the B787-8 also.

The B787-3 could be used not only to replace B767s on SFO/LAX-HNL but (in a different seating configuration) to replace B757s for premium transcon service SFO/LAX-JFK (which until recently was operated by B767-200s). The HNL config could be 2 or 3 rows of 7 abreast domestic F, several rows of 8 abreast Economy Plus, and mostly 9 abreast Economy. The JFK config could be 1 row of 6 abreast premium F class, several rows of 7 abreast C class, and a roughly equal mix of 8 abreast Premium Economy and 9 abreast Economy.
 
birdbrainz
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 4:43 am

Quoting Wdleiser (Reply 10):
United may be pissed off about the 757 though. I feel many airlines are pissed about that.

Where is this coming from? Everything I know about UA and the 757 is that they love them. I'm confused. They're certianly not getting rid of them.
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DAYflyer
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 5:28 am

Considering the fact they can't afford to order anything for a while I say Airbus since they won't need new airplanes before 2012.
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Stitch
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 9:00 am

Quoting DAYflyer (Reply 35):
Considering the fact they can't afford to order anything for a while I say Airbus since they won't need new airplanes before 2012.

One big advantage for UA is they will have plenty of data from operators of both aircraft to determine which one offers the best performance, so whichever one they go for, it will serve them well.
 
gigneil
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RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 9:16 am

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 33):
That would be the B787-3 and perhaps the B787-8 also.

Sure, the 787-3 is the smallest next-gen mid-size widebody.

However, the 787-3 continues to anger me, despite people trying to convince me otherwise.

Sure, I think the 787-3 is perfect for Japan. I also think it is perfect for American to operate within the Caribbean from MIA, and even from JFK and BOS.

The 787-3 is even potentially fine for LAX and SFO-HNL and other Hawaiian destinations at United.

But the 787-3 is not a goood domestic 767 replacement. Not for UA, not for Delta, or for AA. Its lower-end seat count now is 290 and the upper is 330. That is a huge airplane in comparison.

Sure, convince me that its cheaper to fly a somewhat empty 787-3 than a mostly full 767-300A. Fine. I could be convinced of that. I will even take it someone on face value right now.

But no union is going to agree to pay a pilot of a 290-330 seat airplane the same money they were making when they were flying a 250 seat airplane. I just don't see it coming.

Further, you'll note that Qantas passed on the 787-3 for Jetstar's domestic routes. This will be a dedicated fleet of aircraft, even painted in a different livery than Jetstar International. They still chose the 787-8 for that role.

I think United, if they did go the 787 route to replace all 767s, would be better served by maintaining a fleet of domestic-configured 787-8s. This would give them flexibility within the Hawaii operation for DEN and ORD flights and eliminate an aircraft type.

Call me crazy. Please. But I continue to think the 787-3 is a very limited application, mostly due to its huge size and extremely limited range.

N
 
User avatar
Stitch
Posts: 23457
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2005 4:26 am

RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 10:59 am

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 36):
But the 787-3 is not a goood domestic 767 replacement. Not for UA, not for Delta, or for AA. Its lower-end seat count now is 290 and the upper is 330. That is a huge airplane in comparison.

The 787-3 holds 30 more folks then the 763ER and the same as a 764ER in two-class configuration. So it is unlikely a 787-3 will fly 5% empty compared to a 767, much less 50%.

The 787-3 also weighs about 25 tons less then the 763ER and 45 tons less then the 764ER in terms of MTOW. Yet she can carry almost 10,000 gallons more fuel. So if MTOW includes all 33,000 gallons, she can shed tons (literally) of weight by carrying less then that since I can't believe she'd need it all.

Quote:
But no union is going to agree to pay a pilot of a 290-330 seat airplane the same money they were making when they were flying a 250 seat airplane. I just don't see it coming.

UA's did. Their 347-seat 744 pilots agreed to the same pay as the 253-seat 777. And their 244-seat two-class 763 pilots make as much as the 182-seat 752 pilots. So assuming UA puts 275 seats in their domestic 787-3s, then I can't see the 763ER pilots balking at the same pay rate.

Quote:
Further, you'll note that Qantas passed on the 787-3 for Jetstar's domestic routes. This will be a dedicated fleet of aircraft, even painted in a different livery than Jetstar International. They still chose the 787-8 for that role.

Yet JQ has plans to launch international long-haul LCC service. So like SQ and their 772ERs, JQ probably wanted a single-plane that can handle short-haul and long-haul as needed. Unless TED goes international (  Wow! ) I don't see UA doing the same.

Quote:
I think United, if they did go the 787 route to replace all 767s, would be better served by maintaining a fleet of domestic-configured 787-8s. This would give them flexibility within the Hawaii operation for DEN and ORD flights and eliminate an aircraft type.

I find it unlikely UA will restore three-class service to the Islands because of the loss of seating revenue (~200 seats vs. ~275 on a 787-3 and even less on a 787-8). Yes, UA does take some hits from AA using their two-class international-config 763ERs to Hawaii, but if UA was hurting so badly up front, they'd have brought back three-class service.

And even if UA can't get the 787-3 to make it to Hawai'i from ORD, I am not sure it matters. UA flies only two-class 777s to the islands from ORD and they have enough of them around to maintain the service and they are evidently efficient enough now to justify as opposed to smaller 763ERs.
 
gigneil
Posts: 14133
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2002 10:25 am

RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 11:51 am

Quoting Stitch (Reply 37):

The 787-3 also weighs about 25 tons less then the 763ER and 45 tons less then the 764ER in terms of MTOW. Yet she can carry almost 10,000 gallons more fuel.

She can't carry 10,000 gallons more fuel with any payload. The plane is limited to 3500 nm.

Sure, it may have most of the tanks from the -8 onboard, but it would never be able to use it.

Quoting Stitch (Reply 37):
JQ probably wanted a single-plane that can handle short-haul and long-haul as needed.

Except they're not doing that. The domestic planes and the International ones will wear different liveries and be configured differently.

Quoting Stitch (Reply 37):
I find it unlikely UA will restore three-class service to the Islands because of the loss of seating revenue (~200 seats vs. ~275 on a 787-3 and even less on a 787-8).

I wasn't suggesting they would... I was suggesting 2 class 787-8s for domestic operations including hawaii, rather than bothering with the 787-3.

N
 
Tom12
Posts: 1050
Joined: Tue Dec 27, 2005 7:29 am

RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 12:01 pm

I think they will almost definetly go for the Boeing's. Boeing does have the price advantage and in terms of a/c i think Boeing has the better one. Airbus has helped airlines out of bankruptcy thow...eg. US Airways, Airbus funded US Airways $250 million and to return the favour US Airways are replacing the whole long haul fleet with Airbus's
"Per noctem volamus" - Royal Air Force Bomber Squadron IX
 
gigneil
Posts: 14133
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2002 10:25 am

RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 12:04 pm

US was already welllll on their way to being an all Airbus customer.

N
 
zvezda
Posts: 8891
Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2004 8:48 pm

RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 12:21 pm

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 36):

I think United, if they did go the 787 route to replace all 767s, would be better served by maintaining a fleet of domestic-configured 787-8s. This would give them flexibility within the Hawaii operation for DEN and ORD flights and eliminate an aircraft type.

That's a good argument, but will ALPA agree to fly them at B757/B767 rates?

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 36):

Call me crazy. Please. But I continue to think the 787-3 is a very limited application, mostly due to its huge size and extremely limited range.

It's not crazy. But I can't see UA buying any A350/B787 unless ALPA agree to fly them at the B757/B767 pay rates.

Quoting Stitch (Reply 37):
I find it unlikely UA will restore three-class service to the Islands because of the loss of seating revenue

There is zero chance that UA have any interest in three cabin service to Hawaii except perhaps from Japan.

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 38):

Sure, it may have most of the tanks from the -8 onboard, but it would never be able to use it.

The B787-3 reportedly has all the fuel tanks of the B787-8 but, even for ferry ops, they cannot be filled completely.

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 38):
I was suggesting 2 class 787-8s for domestic operations including hawaii, rather than bothering with the 787-3.

Operationally, that might make sense. Similarly, for SFO/LAX-JFK service it might make sense to use B787-8s in the same configuration as international service. The only problem is getting ALPA to agree on the pay rates. Hopefully, ALPA are smarter now than when they elected Dubinsky.
 
gigneil
Posts: 14133
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2002 10:25 am

RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 12:38 pm

The nice thing about having all the tanks is that Boeing could, on a whim, offer 4500 and 5500 nm 787-3s, including larger rudder and probably still even with the reduced tape spins and simplified gear.

3500 just doesn't seem like the right number, you know?

N
 
zvezda
Posts: 8891
Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2004 8:48 pm

RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 1:25 pm

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 42):
The nice thing about having all the tanks is that Boeing could, on a whim, offer 4500 and 5500 nm 787-3s, including larger rudder and probably still even with the reduced tape spins and simplified gear.

There are other structural differences between the B787-3 and the B787-8. The keel is lighter and the wing skins are thinner. It might not be quite so easy for Boeing to increase the MTOW of the B787-3.
 
gigneil
Posts: 14133
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2002 10:25 am

RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 1:39 pm

I bet they can get 4000 nm out of it. At least then it will feature the range performance of an AB6.

N
 
zvezda
Posts: 8891
Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2004 8:48 pm

RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 2:46 pm

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 44):
I bet they can get 4000 nm out of it.

That seems likely given Boeing's tendency to underpromise and overdeliver. DEN-HNL would be easy even at 3500nm. ORD-HNL is 3688nm, so westbound might need a still-air range of 4000nm. ORD-Europe is also possible with a 4000nm aircraft. Another factor for UA that favors the B787-3 over the B787-8 is gate spacing.
 
gigneil
Posts: 14133
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2002 10:25 am

RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Tue Dec 27, 2005 2:52 pm

I dunno if DEN-HNL would be "easy" with 3500nm... winter you get the awful winds, and summer you get the horrible density altitude problem. We'd have to analyze that one a bit more after info on the 783's field performance becomes available (even with a 16,000 ft runway, you frequently hit tire speed limits in the summer there on light widebodies).

ORD-Europe would be interesting, but would certainly come with westbound restrictions and no cargo carried.

Gate spacing is a real issue, no doubt. At IAD there's a lot of widebody capable gates that are sized for 767s and DC-10s, so hopefully that's sufficient. ORD has a lot of widebody gates but also a lot of 777s there. SFO has plenty of gates. LAX not so much. I think the widebody schedule at DEN with their 8 "large" widebody gates on the B concourse is sufficient.

Who knows.

N
 
User avatar
Stitch
Posts: 23457
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2005 4:26 am

RE: UAL - 787 Or A350?

Wed Dec 28, 2005 2:24 am

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 38):
She can't carry 10,000 gallons more fuel with any payload. The plane is limited to 3500 nm.



Quoting Zvezda (Reply 41):
The B787-3 reportedly has all the fuel tanks of the B787-8 but, even for ferry ops, they cannot be filled completely.

Good to know. I was going off WidebodyPhotog's 787 Family chart, and admit that all three aircraft had the same maximum fuel load listed confused the heck out of me, since it didn't make sense a 787-3 with more fuel and more fuel-efficient engines couldn't go as far as a 763/764 with less fuel and less fuel-efficient engines.

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 38):
I was suggesting 2 class 787-8s for domestic operations including hawaii, rather than bothering with the 787-3.



Quoting Zvezda (Reply 41):
Operationally, that might make sense. Similarly, for SFO/LAX-JFK service it might make sense to use B787-8s in the same configuration as international service.

UA will be updating their Business Class cabin in the coming years. While I am unsure of the need for UA to maintain a First Class cabin on their planes when they add 180° lie-flat seating in Business, I am told by UA insiders that F will remain because it differentiates UA from their domestic competition (as only AA offers three-class service, and only on 777s to LGW and NRT).

So, that means UA would have four choices (IMO):

  • Buy only 787-8s and configure them all with three classes.
  • Buy only 787-8s and configure them with two classes - International Business Class and Economy.
  • Buy only the 787-8 and configure some with three classes and some with two (domestic First Class and Economy), as they do now with the 763ER.
  • Buy 787-8s and configure them with three classes and buy 787-3s and configure them with two classes.


Option 1 means you lose a lot of seats, so your available revenue drops. Now, you offer a better product then your competitors, so you can in theory charge more, but will people spend $3000 to fly sleeper seat F and $2000 to fly sleeper seat C on UA 1500-2500 nm when they can fly domestic F for $1000 on AA/CO/DL/NW? Yes, it works now for p.s. service between SFO/LAX and JFK and there is talk it will expand to BOS (to compete with AA) and IAD (to fight the traffic going into DCA). But will it happen SEA/SFO/LAX-DEN/ORD or ORD-DCA/BOS/MIA or DEN/BOS/MIA?

Option 2 loses you less seats, while improving your product against all your domestic competitors. At the same price, your premium cabin beats everyone else's (AA's Business and domestic First, CO's Business First and domestic First, DL's BusinessElite and domestic First, and NW's domestic First) so you should be able to capture more revenue while keeping your own fliers on your product, even if you raise prices a bit (just as UA flyers pay more for p.s. then flying AA/CO 762s).

Option 3 is the status quo, just with 787-8s instead of 763ERs. Yet a two-class 763ER will never serve a European market, so one can expect a two-class 787-8 will never serve a European or Pacific market. The three-class planes, on the other hand, can serve the domestic market as needed (positioning or competitive).

Option 4 is also the status quo, but you have a plane that (I believe) offers better economics for domestic stage lengths and one that (I believe) offers better economics for long-range stage lengths. As with Option 4, the three-class planes can serve the domestic market as needed, albiet with less efficiency (but better revenue from First and Business to offset that).

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 41):
That's a good argument, but will ALPA agree to fly them at B757/B767 rates? I can't see UA buying any A350/B787 unless ALPA agree to fly them at the B757/B767 pay rates.

I believe ALPA will do just that if that is what it takes. Yes, they will want new payrates when UA returns to profitability, but UA can write the new contracts to tie Y1/"Son of A320" into the 737/A319/A320/757 pay rates, 787/A350 into the 767 pay rates, and Y3/A380 into the 777/747 payrates.

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