A small spike in demand for the A380 and A380 values are going to skyrocket.
Except... that's just not going to happen. AF plans to dump their leased A380s (five of their fleet of ten) and LH will sell six of its A380s back to Airbus. MH can't figure out what to do with its six whales if the airline even survives, and QR will remove its ten frames when they reach ten years. So that's a total of 27 -- more than any carrier save EK ordered from Airbus. OZ has another six and they are facing a potential liquidity crisis this year.
EK likely will not keep its older frames as the leases expire and as they take the last few new examples off the line. BA claims to want more but can't make the financials work once refurbishment is added to the consideration. QF has stated they don't want more. EY is in a world of hurt and in no position to take more A380s. So from where will this supposed "small spike in demand" come -- and do you really see it absorbing the dozens of A380s which will be parked in the next few years? I doubt we'll even see a half dozen A380s find new owners.
Airlines will have to think twice before returning their MSN's to the lessors, especially considering that they may end up with a competitor that could use the A380's against them.
I think most airlines would be happy to see their competitors deploy A380s at this point. For most carriers, the A380 seems to just be a very effective way to lose money.
The B787 does not offer better CASM than an A380 in any case, except MAYBE the B787-10. With the B787-10, things can get murky, but the B787-10 is not a cheap aircraft to buy. The B788 doesn't even come near an A380's CASM if you compare similar seating densities.
CASM isn't quite as important as the difference between CASM and RASM. The smaller size of the 787 (and A350, and 777) means that an airline doesn't have to sell as many deeply-discounted economy seats (or just fly empty seats period). ANA flies 789s with 18J/377Y as well as 48J/167Y. They could have chosen to cram their new A380s with 800 seats (and that'd be appropriate to the leisure-heavy TYO-HNL route) but they'd have no prayer of selling that many seats day-in, day-out.
I clearly wrote maybe, maybe not.
Our industry is not predictable.
Keyboard warriors on this site have been predicting 200$ oil in 2007/2008.
The A380's were ordered back when oil was above 100 USD a barrel.
There are many variables.
I'm not even sure that higher oil prices would actually favor smaller aircraft as fares become proportionally higher and thinner routes or high frequency routes see a slump in demand.
I see keyboard warriors making definitive statements that an A380 has higher CASM than smaller aircraft.
If you compare an AF B77W against an SQ A380 that has less seats, sure, but a single SQ suite earns more revenue than a whole row of 10 sardine can seats.
In terms of RASM, if you look at major routes, smaller aircraft will be hauling half the amount of high yielding pax and ten times the amount of the lowest yielding payload, ie cargo, while the A380 will be hauling double the amount of high yielding passengers and won't have to be bothered to fill itself with low yielding cargo.
The argument that the smaller aircraft only captures the high yielding pax while the A380 needs to fill itself up with low yielding pax is only valid for thin routes where the A380 is not suitable in the first place.
I have yet to find a route where the A380 flight is consistently the cheapest option.
I know plenty though where the B787/B77W are the cheapest option and at not very healthy yields...
The A380 is not an aircraft, it's a product. Airlines like QF have not been able to market it as such, but look at SQ or EK. The first SQ flight with CEO Chew Choon Seng leading the camera team into the aircraft is engraved in many people's minds.
Whether there is demand tomorrow can't be predicted accurately today. If Airbus knew that they wouldn't be able to sell the A380 in the 2010's, they probably wouldn't have launched it.
But things change and the A380 is now a very finite resource. It will be interesting to see how things unfold going forward.