LAXintl
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Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:20 pm

Below subscription article makes it sound like Air France has found the large 516-seat A380 not the best fit, and will focus on A350/787s sized aircraft for its network instead.

Suppose this supports what CX recently has been saying about VLA's as well. They are more a niche model and not ideal backbone across a broader longhaul network for many carriers.

If anyone has access, let us know what the rest of the article says..


Air France: Airbus A380 not a good fit for network
http://atwonline.com/airframes/air-f...e-airbus-a380-not-good-fit-network

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RussianJet
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:24 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Thread starter):
They are more a niche model and not ideal backbone across a broader longhaul network for many carriers.

Unless, of course, you happen to be EK.
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avek00
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:26 pm

Not at all surprising. While AIRFRANCE is a ridiculously expensive airline to operate, its Paris-CDG hub lacks the growth constraints that compelled other European legacy airlines to order the A380 superjumbo.
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mercure1
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:53 pm

I think we saw heard hint of this in their comment earlier this year when AF stretch out delivery of some frames by 1-year.
By the time they receive their 12th frame in 2015 it will have been over a 6-year period. They certainly have not been in hurry to acquire the A380.

Unless AF want to equip its A380s with 700-seats and utilize on overseas departments and territories markets, I dont think any AF route really need the A380. Primary longhaul aircraft has become the 777, as even the 744 was deemed too big several years back and fleet trimmed.
 
MaverickM11
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:53 pm

Well, that 380-900 should be announced any day now  . I never understood the need for a 380 at AF since they're not really constrained anywhere.
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PlaneAdmirer
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:57 pm

Quoting avek00 (Reply 2):
Not at all surprising. While AIRFRANCE is a ridiculously expensive airline to operate, its Paris-CDG hub lacks the growth constraints that compelled other European legacy airlines to order the A380 superjumbo.

That's an easy problem to solve. Impose slot restrictions and limit take off and landings arbitrarily. That will drive up fares, the value of the existing slots, and increase the value of VLA's to the incumbent airlines.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:00 pm

Quoting PlaneAdmirer (Reply 5):
That's an easy problem to solve. Impose slot restrictions and limit take off and landings arbitrarily. That will drive up fares, the value of the existing slots, and increase the value of VLA's to the incumbent airlines.

LOL!

Gotta love this...... someone thinking an outside the box solution here, eh?........

 
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:09 pm

I predict this thread has legs.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:13 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Thread starter):
subscription article makes it sound like Air France has found the large 516-seat A380 not the best fit, and will focus on A350/787s sized aircraft for its network instead.

I think that it took a great deal of courage, on the part of Air France, to say what most of us have been wondering about.

But it's out in the open now. The future looks like being B787s/A350s/B777s? NOT B748s/A380s?
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:16 pm

Quoting NAV20 (Reply 8):
The future looks like being B787s/A350s/B777s? NOT B748s/A380s?

It has been evident since the advent of 777-300ER and, to a lesser part, A340-600. Both marketed to replace "older 747/747-400" by each of their respective manufacturer.
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:17 pm

Quoting NAV20 (Reply 8):
I think that it took a great deal of courage, on the part of Air France, to say what most of us have been wondering about.

But it's out in the open now. The future looks like being B787s/A350s/B777s? NOT B748s/A380s?

I wonder if the A380 was ordered for prestige. We all know that AF likes a bit of that...

I think there is a market for the A380, but it may be in 10 to 20 years time when growth in the industry becomes more difficult. Asia will be the staple for the aircraft and I am pretty sure CX will order the aircraft eventually. BA will also order more frames I am sure of and airlines like SQ, LH and EK have put in top up orders indicating that they are more than happy with the aircraft in their respective fleets.
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:23 pm

Quoting NAV20 (Reply 8):
I think that it took a great deal of courage, on the part of Air France, to say what most of us have been wondering about.

I think BA will come to the same conclusion, it's a good niche fit but hardly the backbone of the fleet. It would have been something of a shock of Air France, a semi-autonomous private airline that behaves like it was still part of the French state had not ordered the A380, it's French politics writ large. Now I am not saying there's not a decent business case on some routes, I am merely saying French pride played it's part and if it works, there's nothing wrong with that. Indeed they passed on the A340-600 after all   I think aside from SQ and EK, most A380 purchases have been of a similar vein, with AF, BA and LH at least having a commercial case. Not so sure about MH or TG.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:27 pm

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 1):
Unless, of course, you happen to be EK.

The quote was 'backbone' 'for many carriers'. EK is not 'many carriers'. Also, as EK has more than 3 times as many 777s as they do A380s I don't think I would say that the A380 is the backbone there either. In fact Tim Clark says something similar on Emirates.com:

Tim Clark, President Emirates Airline said: “The 777s form the backbone of our fleet, and we have configured these aircraft to give us maximum flexibility in terms of route deployment.
http://www.emirates.com/us/english/a...ws/news_detail.aspx?article=483394

Sorry to hear the A380 isn't completely working out for AF. Hope it turns around. I love flying on her.

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wingman
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:28 pm

The 787, 350, and 777 have something like 1,700 unfilled orders compared to what for the 380/747...250-300? There's no debate. The 380 isn't even the backbone of the fleet for EK, at best it's one of two.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:28 pm

Quoting skipness1E (Reply 12):
I think BA will come to the same conclusion

I disagree. Look at the intransigence with regard to future south east UK airspace and airport capacity development and factor that into fleet and route planning for the 2020+ decade; British Airways will be in exactly the same position as they were in prior to buying bmi.

The A380s have a sure and secure future at BA and I will bet my shirt they will end up with a significantly more substantial fleet than they currently have on order and option.

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speedbored
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:34 pm

At the time that Air France ordered the A380, their projections obviously suggested to them that the A380 would be a good fit for their network. Since then a number of events (9/11, GFC, etc.), along with increased competition from the gulf carriers have all contributed to a significantly different market from the one that Air France was predicting 13 years ago. Other carriers have been affected in a similar way.

When the global economy recovers, and traffic picks up, I believe that Air France and other airlines will find the A380 to be a good fit for many routes on their networks.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 1):
Unless, of course, you happen to be EK.

  
Even if things don't recover well enough for the A380 to become attractive to many airlines, I'm pretty sure that Airbus will be pretty happy if they only get the potential 180 frame replacement/fleet-doubling order from EK that Tim Clarke was talking about in a recent interview.
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:37 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Thread starter):
They are more a niche model and not ideal backbone across a broader longhaul network for many carriers.
Quoting NAV20 (Reply 8):
The future looks like being B787s/A350s/B777s? NOT B748s/A380s?
Quoting BlueSky1976 (Reply 9):
It has been evident since the advent of 777-300ER and, to a lesser part, A340-600. Both marketed to replace "older 747/747-400" by each of their respective manufacturer.

Looks like Boeing was on to something a few years ago and didn't really want to engage in a pecker contest.
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:38 pm

Quoting SKAirbus (Reply 11):
I wonder if the A380 was ordered for prestige. We all know that AF likes a bit of that...

Air France purchased the jets for the "glory" of France and support French industry.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:39 pm

Quoting Speedbored (Reply 16):
When the global economy recovers, and traffic picks up, I believe that Air France and other airlines will find the A380 to be a good fit for many routes on their networks.

Perhaps, but the 787 and A350 were also not on the table then either. These aircraft offer a range and capacity that the A380 has a hard time competing with. The 747-8 and A380 have a purpose, but not nearly as large as what was once imagined.
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kanban
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:53 pm

Looks like the Concord prestige debate on a larger (more planes) scale.. Boeing shied away from going the bigger is better route years ago.. the 747-8 was needed as a niche freighter.. and to set the stage for AF1 replacement.. but is not considered essential to company profit..
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:55 pm

I’ve posted this before in reference to US carriers, but not for a single hub European operator. The VLA can kill the competition on operating costs per seat. However, it is difficult to manage a network with a limited number of A380s, because there aren’t that many routes that can reliably fill that capacity and don’t have seasonal fluctuations. The VLA may have the lowest CASM, but it has the highest operating costs. That means, that it can hurt RASM in the slow season because that is a lot of seats to fill.

For AF, there certainly are some routes where the VLA capacity is needed like JFK, YUL, etc. However it constrains some flexibility have a small fleet type. Utilization is less and seasonal traffic variations can hurt load factor or revenue. I’m a bit surprised with its single mega hub that Air France has those problems. They are more pronounced in the US market with fragmented hubs and serving international destinations from multiple hubs.

By the way, I used VLA rather than A380 since the exact same argument works for why 747s are not as popular as they once were. The A380 has killer CASM, but must have a route network with the demand and flexibility to reliably fill it. Otherwise it is an expensive lease payment that burns a lot of fuel doing a 777s job. For EK it works great, but it doesn’t work for everyone. UA for example, prefers to operate 2 777s in peak season, and 1 777 in low season. In peak season it is less efficient, but in slow season, it is more efficient. CASM is just as important as fleet flexibility is.

[Edited 2013-10-01 09:56:23]
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:58 pm

Even though Air France believes that the aircraft is not a fit for it's network, I don't see them getting rid of the aircraft anytime soon. But their statements are an interesting one regarding the future of the aircraft outside of carriers like EK who seem to need huge fleets of the aircraft. But perhaps most other carriers will find they don't need as many or any of the A380 at all. Maybe just a bit too big.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:59 pm

IMHO, the airlines will grow into the A380. Once the world economy gets back on it's feet properly and business/tourism increases there's bound to be an increase of bums on seats, and with major gateways being more and more congested, I believe the only answer is to size up. You have to bear in mind that most of these airlines have taken in the A380 during one of the worst recessions in history, so it's only natural that the demand isn't there, (yet). I always quote the early 70s, when we had the rush of airlines to order the new 747, then the fuel crisis came and production/deliveries dropped drastically from 1972-1978, then the 747 delivery rate picked up again. Likewise we had carriers that walked away from the 747 in favour of Tristars/DC10s, but some presisted and indeed in the late 70s/early 80s new customers like SIA, Cathay Pacific, Air NZ, Saudia, ANA started to order the 747. Some airlines will make it work, others won't just like the 747 40 years ago.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:01 pm

Quoting Speedbored (Reply 16):
At the time that Air France ordered the A380, their projections obviously suggested to them that the A380 would be a good fit for their network.

Their projections probably just 'coincidentally' supported the order. It's a lot more common and not just prone to French airlines ordering "French" airplanes.
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tortugamon
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:13 pm

Quoting Speedbored (Reply 16):
When the global economy recovers, and traffic picks up, I believe that Air France and other airlines will find the A380 to be a good fit for many routes on their networks.

An improving economy would certainly help. However, as more time passes more A350/B787s will enter the market and inevitably take over more 747 routes/replacements and the A380 availability advantage will gradually disappear. These models are going to both be produced at over 10/month in the next couple of years. The A380 struggles to get 30/year. I just don't see an improving economy being the silver bullet here.

Of course there is a need for the A380 I just don't see its market size changing in a dramatic way.

Quoting blueshamu330s (Reply 15):
The A380s have a sure and secure future at BA and I will bet my shirt they will end up with a significantly more substantial fleet than they currently have on order and option.

BA already has the lion's share of its 747 replacements on order and have stated they aren't interested in changing the size of A380s on order. In fact there are very few 747s anywhere that need a replacement plan. Of course this could change well down the road but that will have to happen when there are no more 747s in their fleet or in many other fleets (Should be less than 150 total by 2020 and much fewer after that especially at mainline carriers). Which means that in order for the A380 to garner more orders at BA or elsewhere it will probably have to come from a market that is currently being served by a 777 or an A340-600 (much less so).

Replacing a 777 with an A380 certainly happens (look at EK) but it is not like replacing a 744 especially if you like cargo and have an uncertain future. Its much more likely in my opinion that these routes will be disproportionately served by A350s/B787s/B777Xs during the next replacement cycle.

BA can establish solid growth without dramatic increases in frequency and without significant further growth of their A380 fleet and that is the way I think they will go. Just like UA, AF, CX, etc.

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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:14 pm

What are the load factors on AF's 380s? (Yes, I know load factor doesn't mean much, but yields are probably proprietary info.) Is AF able to fill its 380s? Anybody have some anecdotal evidence on AF 380 flights they've taken?

Its an interesting situation that more people than ever are flying, yet the really big planes aren't popular with (most of) the airlines.

Quoting NeutronStar73 (Reply 22):
Even though Air France believes that the aircraft is not a fit for it's network, I don't see them getting rid of the aircraft anytime soon.

This was my next question: If the 380 isn't a fit, could AF sell them? I recall after the 747 came into service that airlines everywhere bought the plane with many selling them upon discovering that it was too much plane. AA for instance.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:15 pm

Quoting Speedbored (Reply 16):
At the time that Air France ordered the A380, their projections obviously suggested to them that the A380 would be a good fit for their network.

But AF hadn't received their first 77W yet, and the 77W hadn't gained 700nm yet, and no tier one carrier had put 10Y into a 777 yet. And the 77E had only been in service a few years.

Carriers with fleets of 744s were under the impression that they needed VLAs because they had VLAs, even though some 744s were purchased for their range, not their capacity.

But as time has moved on, most have realized that many of the VLAs they owned were there because of range/payload ability, and the newer but not as large aircraft could carry more cargo and fulfill most if not all the VLA missions at a higher profit.

Both Airbus and Boeing knew that carriers would want more cargo per pax so they both designed their new jets (787/A350) with that in mind, maxing out the hold space -- some might say and sacrificing aesthetics to do it -- which shifts the argument even further from VLAs. (and from dedicated freighters, which AF also is backing away from)

The old argument held that if you could replace 2 planes with a VLA, well it's more economical. But if you can run 2 almost as economical new aircraft on the same route, and carry much more cargo, it may be a better option.
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speedbored
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:23 pm

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 24):
It's a lot more common and not just prone to French airlines ordering "French" airplanes.

So that would explain how Air France have twice as many Boeing wide-bodies as they have Airbus wide-bodies, would it?
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anfromme
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:24 pm

Quoting kanban (Reply 20):
the 747-8 was needed as a niche freighter.. and to set the stage for AF1 replacement.. but is not considered essential to company profit..

What would a.net be without those myths you can't really find anywhere else?
What does it matter that Boeing would certainly not have launched the multi-billion $ revamp that is the 747-8 for freighters alone. What, indeed, does it matter, that Boeing initially predicted 3/4 of 747-8 sales to be for the pax variant... In short - a.net myths: Your happy place where facts don't matter.

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 18):
Air France purchased the jets for the "glory" of France and support French industry.

That's exactly what happened when they placed their initial order for 10 in 2000, and again seven years later when they ordered another 2. It's also the only valid explanation for any potential A380 top-up order by AF in the future. Or any Airbus order at all, really.
  

A big problem with this whole thread, by the way, is that the article it's based on is subscription-only. Without a subscription, it's impossible to tell what exactly Air France have said and what the context was. (Curiously, on their own website, AF still call the A380 "well-adapted to the Air France strategy" and the hub at CDG.)

Generally, the fact that they'll have more 787/A350(/777X)-sized aircraft than A380s, and that the A380 is not going to be the backbone of their fleet, should not really come as a shock to anybody. AF never had more than 12 pax 747-400, of which 5 were combis. (Their total A380 order is also 12.) Not a very VLA-heavy airline compared to LH or BA for instance.
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kanban
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:30 pm

Quoting anfromme (Reply 29):
What would a.net be without those myths you can't really find anywhere else?
What does it matter that Boeing would certainly not have launched the multi-billion $ revamp that is the 747-8 for freighters alone. What, indeed, does it matter, that Boeing initially predicted 3/4 of 747-8 sales to be for the pax variant... In short - a.net myths: Your happy place where facts don't matter.

Where I can agree with you on some points.. a hazard in today's environment is assuming all statements are absolute and immutable. The 747-8 program has been constantly re assessed by Boeing and a statement 5-10 years past may not be relevant to current thought.. Another A.net myth.. once said never revisited for update and feet should be held to the fire if perception or goals change.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:34 pm

Quoting skipness1E (Reply 12):
I think BA will come to the same conclusion, it's a good niche fit but hardly the backbone of the fleet

I would go further and say that BA have already come to the same conclusion. It looks to be a great aircraft for those routes where curfew or other clock restraints condense operations into a narrow time window. But otherwise . . .


Quoting blueshamu330s (Reply 15):
The A380s have a sure and secure future at BA and I will bet my shirt they will end up with a significantly more substantial fleet than they currently have on order and option

I am not a betting man so will keep my shirt on my back. But with three 77Ws still on order and with totals of 18 350s and 42 787s ordered as well as the 12 380s the chances of any further BA 380 orders beyond their 7 outstanding options look very slim to me. Indeed I personally doubt whether all of their options will be exercised.

Unless BA abandon their high frequency strategy aimed primarily at the business traveller I cannot see where they would operate a significantly bigger 380 fleet then they currently have ordered. Of course if they went face to face with the likes of EK aiming their product as they did back in the 90s then things would be different. But I believe the chances of that happening are next to zero.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:36 pm

Quoting kanban (Reply 20):
the 747-8 was needed as a niche freighter.. and to set the stage for AF1 replacement..

I have a hard time believing that knowing what Boeing knows now that they still would have launched the 747-8.

Quoting anfromme (Reply 29):
Generally, the fact that they'll have more 787/A350(/777X)-sized aircraft than A380s, and that the A380 is not going to be the backbone of their fleet, should not really come as a shock to anybody. AF never had more than 12 pax 747-400, of which 5 were combis. (Their total A380 order is also 12.) Not a very VLA-heavy airline compared to LH or BA for instance.

Well said. I too would like to read the full article/quote. "Not a good fit" and "Not the backbone of the fleet" are very different things and columnists are notorious for eye-catching titles when the actual quote is more understated.

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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:37 pm

Quoting blueshamu330s (Reply 15):
The A380s have a sure and secure future at BA and I will bet my shirt they will end up with a significantly more substantial fleet than they currently have on order and option.

As super-bullish as I am on the A380, I'm starting to wonder if a dozen may very well be enough for BA.

The 777-300ER has about 20% less Club World and 50% more World Traveller Plus seats and the same number of FIRST and World Traveller seats as the High-J 747-400, resulting in the same number of total seats. The A350-1000 should be the same as the 777-300ER and the 787-10 should be close. So that looks to me like BA is thinking that the majority of their 747-400 routes will see Club World demand shift towards World Traveller Plus and new premium customers will more likely choose WT+ over CW.

The A380-800 offers a significant increase in CW and WT seating compared to the High-J 747-400 so it seems to me to be only appropriate for a handful of core routes with high traffic demand in all classes (essentially cities served with a mix of High-J and Low-J 747-400s).

[Edited 2013-10-01 10:39:23]
 
evomutant
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:44 pm

Great thread. We get some A380 bashing and some boring cliches about the French thrown in too. Happy days!


I hate to be all pragmatic and all, but maybe they just made a mistake? Got their modelling wrong? It happens. The incessant need for conspiracies behind everything is rather tedious.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:50 pm

Quoting Speedbored (Reply 28):
France have twice as many Boeing wide-bodies as they have Airbus wide-bodies, would it?

It certainly could be; I think people underestimate how often decisions are made and *then* backed into with forecasts and projections. Then again Airbus didn't really have a big twin competitor at the time.
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gegarrenton
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:52 pm

Quoting evomutant (Reply 34):
Great thread. We get some A380 bashing and some boring cliches about the French thrown in too. Happy days!

Expect anything less?
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 6:05 pm

Quoting evomutant (Reply 34):
I hate to be all pragmatic and all, but maybe they just made a mistake? Got their modelling wrong? It happens. The incessant need for conspiracies behind everything is rather tedious.

That and maybe the aviation world has changed significantly in the last years! The A380 now is slightly older than the 777 was then...2000 was ions ago.

Also, was it ever intended to be the "backbone" of the fleet? My guess is not, that is an A-Net label. I am sure they will find a niche for it that works for them.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 6:12 pm

Quoting Stitch (Reply 33):
The 777-300ER has about 20% less Club World and 50% more World Traveller Plus seats and the same number of FIRST and World Traveller seats as the High-J 747-400, resulting in the same number of total seats.

Could there be something else contributing to this trend? The 77Ws seem to be used on the longest BA routes (PVG, NRT, SIN/SYD, GIG (or GRU; can't remember) where 744s are less economical. Do these longer routes have a higher mix of premium clients that may not be indicative of shorter routes that have yet to be replaced by 77Ws?

Today's premium business traveler is tomorrow's economy seat family vacationer so its not like they can ignore Y completely. They may think they can upgrade the valuable clients to W. However, there is no doubt that LCC and ME3 are eating some of BAs lunch so I don't doubt that their Y demand is down. Just not sure if these 12 77Ws are the tell tale sign.

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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 6:16 pm

Quoting evomutant (Reply 34):
Great thread. We get some A380 bashing and some boring cliches about the French thrown in too. Happy days!

After 6 straight weeks of incessant Boeing 787 bashing I find it quite refreshing. Such a shame to leave Embraer and Bombardier out of it though.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 6:17 pm

Another thread:
The A380 will never be a good case, and will dry up in orders and die....

we now have 3 of those on ANet, and 4 regarding the 787 problems...

Nothing new under the sun.

AF did not order those on a whim, BUT they have big costs and they are not very efficient, hence using a very expensive airplane with expensive ops its complicated. not the AC fault.

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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 6:19 pm

Quoting evomutant (Reply 34):
Great thread. We get some A380 bashing and some boring cliches about the French thrown in too. Happy days!

 
Quoting evomutant (Reply 34):
I hate to be all pragmatic and all, but maybe they just made a mistake? Got their modelling wrong?

Good point.

Quoting United787 (Reply 37):
Also, was it ever intended to be the "backbone" of the fleet? My guess is not, that is an A-Net label. I am sure they will find a niche for it that works for them.

You buy as many as you think will make more profit than another type for your airline, I guess. That might mean 10 A380's out of a total fleet of 200 aircraft or it might mean 20 A380's out of a total fleet of 150 aircraft.

If it does not work for AF, so be it, although I think that as pax traffic increases in the coming years it will work better and better for its present operators.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 6:20 pm

Quoting Stitch (Reply 33):
So that looks to me like BA is thinking that the majority of their 747-400 routes will see Club World demand shift towards World Traveller Plus and new premium customers will more likely choose WT+ over CW.

Or that the premium market will become more and more schedule competitive, thus requiring fewer seats per departure on more departures....
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 6:24 pm

Sad to read, as I'm an A380 fan. But then again, it takes enough trunk routes to fly the A380. AF first needs to connect more cities to CDG. Sigh... I would wish for another runway at CDG and the closing of ORY for AFs sake (concentrate the connections). So for now, AF should go smaller gauge.

The reality is the business market has changed for AF. They haven't done as well to India as plan...

Quoting roseflyer (Reply 21):
it is difficult to manage a network with a limited number of A380s, because there aren’t that many routes that can reliably fill that capacity and don’t have seasonal fluctuations. The VLA may have the lowest CASM, but it has the highest operating costs. That means, that it can hurt RASM in the slow season because that is a lot of seats to fill.

   But if you can, or the seasonal premium is high enough and travel times are limited (e.g., curfews or cultural preference), the A380 will make good money.

Quoting JAAlbert (Reply 26):
Its an interesting situation that more people than ever are flying, yet the really big planes aren't popular with (most of) the airlines.

Frequency and fragmentation. When I fly, I plan on ways to:
1. Meet my business obligations (e.g., meeting times and enough time on the ground to complete tasks)
2. Maximize the time I spend with my daughters.

Only with frequency and fragmentation are both met. (For business, I do not pay, so no worries...)

Quoting ikramerica (Reply 27):
and no tier one carrier had put 10Y into a 777 yet

That changed the game. Hence why I think the 787 will be majority 9 across very quickly...

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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 6:26 pm

Quoting incitatus (Reply 42):
Or that the premium market will become more and more schedule competitive, thus requiring fewer seats per departure on more departures....

But we're consistently being told that LHR will only become more and more slot-restricted as time goes on, so BA cannot add more departures.

Unless they plan on turning LGW into a premium hub, as well, and expanding there?
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 6:51 pm

Regarding of capacity versus frequency, even with growth in air-travel I see frequency as being the more important benefit for airlines versus simply capacity.

Yes single A380 might be more efficient versus 2 smaller planes, but having 2 flights for example gives airline more market appeal. Also filling a large VLA day after day must be more challenging. With smaller planes airlines have less sales pressure and better ability to mix capacity and frequency during low traffic periods.


Quoting lightsaber (Reply 43):
AF first needs to connect more cities to CDG.

According to AF corporate presentation, CDG is already ahead of FRA and buy a huge market ahead of LHR in connection opportunities. Average daily flights is almost 800, with 52% of all passengers on connecting ittinaries.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 43):
I would wish for another runway at CDG

CDG does quite well. Already have 4 runways with last one just coming into service in 2005. Operational capacity is reported at 160 movements/hr with peak today not even reaching 120.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 43):
and the closing of ORY for AFs sake

Orly is the domestic heart of AF network. Without being in ORY, AF would turn over market to people like EasyJet and Ryanair. For most local traffic ORY is much better and central than venturing out to CDG.

If you suggest closing ORY entirely in favor of CDG only for Paris, I dont see how this would be possible as ORY itself generates 30mil passengers, and CDG could never become a single airport handling almost 100mil customers for Paris region.
Like any other large metro area, multiple airport system function quite well.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 7:43 pm

Quoting mercure1 (Reply 45):
If you suggest closing ORY entirely in favor of CDG only for Paris, I dont see how this would be possible as ORY itself generates 30mil passengers, and CDG could never become a single airport handling almost 100mil customers for Paris region.
Like any other large metro area, multiple airport system function quite well.

Having flown out of both, I'd cry if ORY was closed. It's far more convenient for much of Paris.
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 7:59 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Thread starter):
Air France: Airbus A380 not a good fit for network

So what AF is saying is that they got their homework wrong and bought the wrong aircraft.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 8:25 pm

Quoting JAAlbert (Reply 25):
This was my next question: If the 380 isn't a fit, could AF sell them? I recall after the 747 came into service that airlines everywhere bought the plane with many selling them upon discovering that it was too much plane. AA for instance.

And CO, DL, TP, EI and quite a few others. TWA also returned many of their early 747s to Boeing after only 3 or 4 years service to generate cash. Most of them wound up with the Iranian Air Force. Pan Am also had far too many 747s in the 1970s, resulting in low load factors and unprofitable low fares introduced to help fill them.
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 8:31 pm

That's really funny: nobody has read that article but everyone comes up with an "I-told-you-analysis". The only thing which is missing in this thread is that joke about AF's dirty aircrafts...

But if it is as simple as presented in the headline: I am sniffling the next candidate for the 779X?
 
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RE: Air France: Airbus A380 Not A Good Fit For Network

Tue Oct 01, 2013 8:37 pm

Quoting N14AZ (Reply 48):
sniffling

I wonder if you meant to include the 'l' in this word. I can see it both ways.  

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