|Quoting PM (Reply 3):|
Pretty much all other airlines in the region (Gulf, Emirates, Qatar, Etihad) fly the A330. That might be a pointer. The other factor is when they want to start these flights. It may be a long wait for a 787 or an A350 whereas the A330 could be in service next year.
They could have 787s in 2, maybe 3 years potentially, especially if NW
cancels their order, which doesn't look too far out right now.
Also, the 787 looks to have substantially better economics than A330, and marginally better economics than A350. Plus, the prestige of flying on a brand-new, ground up aircraft. It was like when 757 or A320 came out, there was a prestige attached to buying them. Boeing has marketed the 787 really well.
If they bought 73Gs, and are happy, i'm not sure why they'd move over to Airbus. Except that my understanding is that Airbus is giving A340s away, practically (and with their fuel consumption, it's still not a good deal), and have been making pretty good deals on the A330 as well. Too bad Boeing refuses to be more aggressive in selling 767s, maybe they could sell a few more.
A lot of gulf region airlines opperate A330, but they will also opperate 787s as well (atleast, some of them).