With the new LCY service, EI will be operating up to 50x daily flights between Dublin and London. I know that this is spread across multiple airports, but would it not be worth using A330's for some of these flights? Yes, there are gate issues, but just park them remotely and bus the passengers.
I see many benefits to this, including:
- IAG making use of 1 or 2 extra LHR slots (from EI) for BA expansion.
- EI having a direct Business Class offering from London to the USA.
There would be capacity to do this, as many of the A330's arrive early in the morning at DUB from North America, but don't have scheduled departures again until after midday - a DUB - LON - DUB round-trip could easily be done in 3.5 hours with a buffer, and it would improve A330 fleet efficiency, no?
It’s 25 ish rotations across LHR, LGW, and now LCY. Let’s not get too hysterical. LHR takes the most, which is understandable considering that it’s BA’ (IAG) country, and then it’s between LCY & LGW.
As for consolidation of flights using the A330, I don’t think that’s an option in LCY... it’s unlikely to be one in LGW where flights are timed for flexibility across the day, and similarly in the case of LHR, where flights are likely timed for connections in both directions, and then to allow for the worker and tourist commute to and from London in the morning and evening. In these instances, flexibility is key to meeting the demands of the consumer.
I’d imagine that the rotations would count towards service intervals, along with the possibility of having a 330 go tech while out of the country, and with the 330 fleet being pushed to the maximum as it is currently, short haul hops are not an ideal use of the 330’s free time. That, and I believe that the down time is used to do checks on the 330 anyways, so free time is limited.
When you lump in everything together, sure, why doesn’t EI just lease out a 380 from BA in all economy layout and stick it on the ‘London’ route twice a day, that frees up slots and aircraft. I think you’ll find, there’s a little more nuance than that.