On another note, QF are taking their time with announcing the new HND flight. I wonder with both ANA and JAL going with SYD, they might now be thinking of switching to MEL?
I've heard persistent rumour that discussions between QF and HND airport regarding the A380 from SYD is still open and not quite as much as a firm "no chance" as some here seem to think. Although, I too believe it's a distant outside chance but maybe this could be one reason no word from QF as yet? A380 SYD-HND would allow QF to keep high premium capacity from SYD and allow them to move MEL-NRT to HND. Though if A380 doesn't get the green light then SYD will go double daily and MEL will be left out at NRT. I just struggle to see QF sitting by as ANA go double daily and JAL move over from NRT while at the same time they drop SYD-HND capacity. If this route is as important as we here think it is and makes the money, then they have no choice but to defend it.
I agree with you that the negotiations over the A380 are delaying an announcement.
If QF can secure the A380 from SYD, then it would switch MEL-NRT to HND.
There are other benefits like being able to maintain higher capacity on SYD without using another aircraft and also potentially close the NRT lounge.
It would also allow DFW to go 787 daily.
I still don’t think QF has a strong point to justify and persuade Japan to open up 380 in HND.
AJ said before if they couldn’t get 380 working then he wants additional slots in HND so he can go double daily, which he got already. And now he wants HND to set the unprecedented rule just because he noticed all his rivalries keep adding capacity into SYD and he wants more. That doesn’t sound very convincing to me. HND could have just said to QF that it’s not our problem that you didn’t buy any 77W...
Beside Australia got granted so many HND slots in latest allocation round given some countries barely receive a slot.
One of the reason they can add so many slots this time is because US opens up Yokoda air space to civil uses so HND can alter their traffic control sequence and allowing more take off and landing. But it also adds complexity to the traffic control operation. 380 would be a nightmare given HND is operating under maximum capacity.
On top of that the bridge over to D runway in HND has weight restrictions hence 380 can’t use that runway. If they allow 380 then they’ll have to adjust the take off and landing sequence whenever there’s a 380 in action. I’m pretty sure many aware that QF always take off from D runway when it’s south wind blowing. Because D runway has least noise impact to the Bay Area so they stipulate that all flights heading south that doesn’t require runway length of more than 2500m to take off from that runway. Which is also why only 4 flights are allowed to take off from C runaway during late night morning window.
And again, if they open up, SQ, EK, TG, NH, LH will also ask for the same entitlement as well. Imagine the political issue they would have to explain to the people in Japan why they only give this entitlement to QF.
Not saying it’s totally impossible but given the circumstances I found it really hard to believe HND would open up itself for 380 in short term. (Beside 380’s production line is about to be gone in next few years, why would they spend so much effort and money to relax a rule for an aircraft that no one would be using in 10~15 years time?)