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KarelXWB
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SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 6:45 pm

South African Airways will announce a fleet renewal plan in the coming weeks. The airline wants to replace its fleet of nine A340-600s, eight A340-300s and one A340-200 with A350s and/or 787s.

Delivery slots are an important factor: replacements have to start from 2017; their oldest A340 will be 15 years old by then. Both Airbus and Boeing are sold out until 2018-2020 however, although Airbus said they can get a few A350s in 2016 already via lessors.

SAA had chosen the A350 earlier this year, but their CEO got fired for this because the government wants to be involved.

Story in French:
http://www.lesafriques.com/actualite...-ai.html?Itemid=89?articleid=39243

[Edited 2013-10-02 11:46:58]
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roseflyer
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 6:54 pm

I cross my fingers that this will be a good business decision and not based on politics. I’ve always wondered about SAA’s fleet structure after they purchased A320s in the 1990s, then replaced them in 2000s with 737-800s only to again replace the 737-800s with A320s in 2005 and after.
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tortugamon
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 6:57 pm

The A359 and A351 are the logical replacements for these aircraft. What 787s would make sense? 787-9s for the A343 but then it would be a small mixed fleet because the 787-10 cannot do what the A346 has been doing and what the A351 will do in terms of payload range in hot/high. Unless they are willing to look at the 777x or they are interested in dropping capacity this has Airbus written all over it in my opinion.


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LX138
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 7:09 pm

Quoting KarelXWB (Thread starter):
Delivery slots are an important factor: replacements have to start from 2017; their oldest A340 will be 15 years old by then. Both Airbus and Boeing are sold out until 2018-2020 however, although Airbus said they can get a few A350s in 2016 already via lessors.

What's wrong with 15 years old? That's nothing.

However I think you'll find the A342 they have is already 21 years old.

You can't help think if delivery slots are such an important factor, then they should have started looking earlier!! They really have missed the train on this one.
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Stitch
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 7:19 pm

I agree Airbus would seem the logical choice, but the South African government appears to have felt that would also be the more expensive choice (as Airbus would have less incentive to match / beat Boeing's RFP).

That being said, Boeing was not pleased to lose the ~300-seat RFP to the A340-600 at the last moment so one wonders how hard they'd be willing to work to land this one.

The 787-9 would work as an A340-300 replacement, but the A350-900 has a bit more growth potential. The A350-1000 has the capacity to replace the A340-600, but does it have the hot and high performance? That might favor the 777-8, which also has the capacity.

Perhaps a split order? 15 A350-900 and 10 777-8?
 
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KarelXWB
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 7:32 pm

Quoting Stitch (Reply 4):
Perhaps a split order? 15 A350-900 and 10 777-8?

The article does not mention the 777X, only 787s and A350s.
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frigatebird
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 8:06 pm

777-8 wouldn't be available before 2021, would be far too late for SA.

I wouldn't be surprised to see the first new order in years for the A350-800. It could really make sense for SA, and perhaps there may even be some early production slots available... and I believe some leasing companies have it an order, and they might not all be placed yet. That being said, maybe there also some 787s not yet allocated by leasing companies.

I'm not sure about the A350-1000 for SA. They might be better off with some down sizing of their fleet.
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KarelXWB
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 8:09 pm

Quoting frigatebird (Reply 6):
They might be better off with some down sizing of their fleet.

The French translation is not very good, but it says something about "downsizing".
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Stitch
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 9:09 pm

Quoting KarelXWB (Reply 5):
he article does not mention the 777X, only 787s and A350s.
Quoting frigatebird (Reply 6):
777-8 wouldn't be available before 2021, would be far too late for SA.

Then it's going to be the A350, which makes me wonder why they fired the CEO for selecting it in the first place...   



Quoting frigatebird (Reply 6):
I wouldn't be surprised to see the first new order in years for the A350-800.

In HGW form it should have the performance necessary and would bridge capacity between the A330-200 and the A340-300.
 
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KarelXWB
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 9:24 pm

Quoting Stitch (Reply 8):
which makes me wonder why they fired the CEO for selecting it in the first place

Because the government wanted to be involved. Which means they're re-evaluating everything from A to Z and than come to the same conclusion   
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IslandRob
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 9:52 pm

Quoting KarelXWB (Reply 9):
Which means they're re-evaluating everything from A to Z and than come to the same conclusion

I think you mean from A to B! -ir
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EddieDude
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 10:05 pm

I assume the A330s are staying for quite some time.
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KarelXWB
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 10:09 pm

Quoting LX138 (Reply 3):
However I think you'll find the A342 they have is already 21 years old.

Good one, although that's only 1 aircraft.

Quoting EddieDude (Reply 11):
I assume the A330s are staying for quite some time.

Maybe, or maybe not: their last batch of A332s delivered in 2011 are only 2 years old but they also have a few older A330s on lease.

[Edited 2013-10-02 15:10:52]
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DexSwart
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Wed Oct 02, 2013 11:40 pm

Some of SA's routes require quads, or at least need them to run routes efficiently? PEK and PER come to mind, but that's just me thinking.

I just hope SA will make a choice and stick with it. It'll be really detrimental should they change their choices again.

Most South Africans I know don't fly with SA because of their lacklustre service and small, uncomfortable seating.
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jfk777
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Thu Oct 03, 2013 12:22 am

The challenge for SAA is can a twin get off the ground to Peking and JFK. Delta does it with a 777LR but is the 777-8X the answer for SAA.
 
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Thu Oct 03, 2013 12:24 am

Quoting DexSwart (Reply 13):

Most South Africans I know don't fly with SA because of their lacklustre service and small, uncomfortable seating.

Did SA's long-haul inflight service really go downhill in recent years? I flew ATL-CPT and JNB-SID-ATL on a 744 back in 2003, and the service was excellent.
.......
 
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Thu Oct 03, 2013 12:29 am

Quoting EddieDude (Reply 11):
I assume the A330s are staying for quite some time.

The 6 A330 fleet members are all on lease from Aircastle, so those will be going back at some point.

Ultimately SA has flexibility with the 330's but I doubt they are anything other than a bridge aircraft. Hence the lease solution.


South African Aw Lease 6 New A330-200s (by FCKC Dec 17 2009 in Civil Aviation)

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RayChuang
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Thu Oct 03, 2013 1:38 am

My guess: SA will end up buying a fairly substantial A350XWB-900 fleet, but with uprated Trent XWB engines so the plane can operate out of JNB safely in "hot and high" conditions.
 
Someone83
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Thu Oct 03, 2013 5:58 am

Quoting KarelXWB (Thread starter):
Both Airbus and Boeing are sold out until 2018-2020 however, although Airbus said they can get a few A350s in 2016 already via lessors.

Airbus can also include some interim A330s as part of the deal, as they done with other airlines
 
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KarelXWB
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:50 am

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 16):
The 6 A330 fleet members are all on lease from Aircastle, so those will be going back at some point.

Sure, but assuming a lease term of 10 or 12 years, they won't need an A330 replacement before 2020. The current order focuses on A340 replacements starting from 2017.

[Edited 2013-10-03 00:52:44]
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jumpjet
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Thu Oct 03, 2013 8:47 am

Serious question, so please don't savage me!

I see that SAA has two flights daily from JNB to LHR. One is an A340-600 the other an A330, and that there's only a short period between each of these. Would an A380 better serve this route and be cheaper to operate than doing it with two aircraft and six engines? Just a thought....
 
scouseflyer
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Thu Oct 03, 2013 9:14 am

Quoting Jumpjet (Reply 20):

Serious question, so please don't savage me!

I see that SAA has two flights daily from JNB to LHR. One is an A340-600 the other an A330, and that there's only a short period between each of these. Would an A380 better serve this route and be cheaper to operate than doing it with two aircraft and six engines? Just a thought....

That's been mentioned many times on here - it would be a very small sub-fleet but maybe they'll take a couple of the Doric birds?
 
DexSwart
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Thu Oct 03, 2013 9:42 am

Quoting jmc1975 (Reply 15):
Did SA's long-haul inflight service really go downhill in recent years? I flew ATL-CPT and JNB-SID-ATL on a 744 back in 2003, and the service was excellent.

Ha! Did they ever! They've gone so far downhill I almost exclusively fly QF/EK. The FA's just don't seem to care very much anymore. I'm sure there area few that still do, but for the most part, I've felt nothing but uncomfortable and annoyed on their flights.
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123
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Thu Oct 03, 2013 10:19 am

Quoting DexSwart (Reply 22):
The FA's just don't seem to care very much anymore. I'm sure there area few that still do, but for the most part, I've felt nothing but uncomfortable and annoyed on their flights.

It´s been ages since I decided not to post anymore, but here yes, in answer to you:

I feel SAA is one of the airlines that has a consistent quality on long haul. Their old- and new style C-class seating is simply very practical and comfortable. Who needs an entertainment center? Pax need a relaxing atmosphere in any class, but specially C-class. That´s what you pay for, to arrive relaxed. You start relaxed with a fabulous lounge in JNB and relax while boarding.

And this is what SAA does -) They give you a great service and practical gadgets/amenities; Clean modern aircraft, ontime departures/arrivals, convenient connections and you name it all.

Possibly compared to some 5* Asian airlines, they are not up-dated, but European airlines including LX/LH/BA/AF, can learn from SAA, to make pax feel comfortable on board.

Treat the staff nicely even if things are not the way you wish, and you will get your share of nice treatment back too...

I chose SAA whenever my routings allow me to fly with them!
 
 
imag
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:57 am

Quoting Jumpjet (Reply 20):

Serious question, so please don't savage me!

I see that SAA has two flights daily from JNB to LHR. One is an A340-600 the other an A330, and that there's only a short period between each of these. Would an A380 better serve this route and be cheaper to operate than doing it with two aircraft and six engines? Just a thought....

I've read somewhere, so not 100% sure, but I thought the bilateral agreements required two flights per day from each country, between the countries. Also, it's a lot of plane to have sitting on the ground at LHR for 14 hours a day. I know they have two sitting on the ground at the moment, but at least those can mostly be used on other rotations on the South African side (ie flights into Africa).

That said if BA see the need for two 747's and sometimes an extra 777 to JNB, going to one A380 and a 747 next year, why can't SA compete? Throw in the 747 to Cape Town (2 in the southern summer), they have the capacity on that route.

Plus if they sell one of the two remaining LHR morning arrival/evening departure slots, then it'll be a great profit for the year and bonuses all round. Ooops, what do you mean the profit won't be the same next year. Bring in another CEO then.....
 
jfk777
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:39 am

Quoting Jumpjet (Reply 20):
I see that SAA has two flights daily from JNB to LHR. One is an A340-600 the other an A330, and that there's only a short period between each of these. Would an A380 better serve this route and be cheaper to operate than doing it with two aircraft and six engines? Just a thought....

Since SAA is a smaller airline by world standards having a small fleet of A380 primarily for LHR flying would probably be to expensive. SAA doesn't have the yield premuim BA has on the route, no First Class for SAA. SAA's A340-600 seats 317 passengers which is about as big as they want to get. IF SAA had an A380 it ould probably seat 550 passengers if they had no First Class and 50 Business seats, that is lots of seats to sell in the "low season". A 777-9X would be more efficient for SAA if they wanted the next biggest airplane after the A380.
 
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:47 am

Quoting RayChuang (Reply 17):
My guess: SA will end up buying a fairly substantial A350XWB-900 fleet, but with uprated Trent XWB engines so the plane can operate out of JNB safely in "hot and high" conditions

I think this what SAA will do as well. I wish SAA saw the 777 family as an option, I think 777s and 330s would be a good mix for SAA, but as we were informed the 789 or 359 is what is being considered. I think Airbus will win the order, but I still believe the 777 should have a home with SAA. Can the 359 make it to JFK or any other US city SAA may want to fly to?
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Miami
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Fri Oct 04, 2013 12:04 pm

If they are to renew their fleet. It would be: A350, 787, and 777X All long range aircraft for long range routes  

Don't know about the A380 or 748 for SA..

My US routes guesses would be BOS, MIA, IAH, and LAX?? LAX seems to long of a flight though.


MIA,+JNB-LAX,+JNB-BOS,+JNB-IAH&DU=nm&E=180,240,330" target="_blank">http://www.gcmap.com/mapui?P=JNB-MIA...B-BOS,+JNB-IAH&DU=nm&E=180,240,330

Good luck to SAA. Happy Flying!   

-Miami   
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speedbird128
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Fri Oct 04, 2013 1:23 pm

Quoting imag (Reply 25):
why can't SA compete?

Because SAA are unable and unwilling to compete. The general direction has been towards increasing regional flying, and reducing european flights. LHR, FRA, MUC are as much as SAA do now if I am not mistaken there are also IAD, GRU, PER, PEK, HKG and BOM.

777's are just too much aircraft for SAA. The A359 will likely be as big as they go. None of the routes have the premium cabins (nor numbers if its just Y/J) to justify an A380 subfleet.

Gone are the days of Blue Diamond Class, and the service to boot. So their chances of regaining lost ground to all the EU carriers and EK/EY/QR/TK at the same time is next to zero.
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chieft
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Fri Oct 04, 2013 1:44 pm

Quoting tortugamon (Reply 2):

I cross my fingers that this will be a good business decision and not based on politics.


Quoting KarelXWB (Thread starter):
SAA had chosen the A350 earlier this year, but their CEO got fired for this because the government wants to be involved.


Quoting Speedbird128 (Reply 29):
Because SAA are unable and unwilling to compete.


And that's the trouble. The airline has obviously to live, what politics give them. And thus it is hard for them to be competitive
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cmf
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Fri Oct 04, 2013 1:53 pm

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 26):
A 777-9X would be more efficient for SAA if they wanted the next biggest airplane after the A380.

Why would the 779 be more efficient if they have A380 demand? (To stay with the parameters of the question.)
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tortugamon
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Fri Oct 04, 2013 5:40 pm

Quoting chieft (Reply 30):

Not my quote.

tortugamon
 
speedbird128
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Fri Oct 04, 2013 9:52 pm

Quoting chieft (Reply 30):
And thus it is hard for them to be competitive

SAA will not be competetive nor profitable after acquiring A350's. Politics is only one half of the problem.

We've heard this all before when they got rid of the A320's and then got 738's. Then again when they got A319's to replace the 732's then again when the A340 replaced the 747's then again when the A320's started replacing the 738's. And now again with the A359 replacing the A340's... We've heard this stuck "we-need-a-new-government-handout-fleet-to-be-profitable" LP for a while now..

The other half is the staff. Staff need to be willing to be productive, and unfortunately with the attitude of a never-ending pipeline of government money to keep saa afloat, there isn't much desire nor need to focus on productivity....

That and the repeated nest-lining upper ranks of the passageway strollers over at Airways Park haven't exactly set a sterling example...
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PVG
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Sat Oct 05, 2013 1:46 am

Quoting KarelXWB (Reply 9):

No, it means that funds aren't flowing in the "correct" direction yet!

SA long haul service is ok, no great, not bad. I find that the service on their domestic flights is very good, and certainly better than anything you get in US domestic economy.
 
runzel
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RE: SAA To Announce Fleet Renewal Plan Soon

Sat Oct 05, 2013 9:11 am

I'm not sure if it is correct to comment further on cabin services at SA here - I'll gladly stand reprimanding.

Late September I flew IAH LOS on UA (788) then LOS JNB CPT on SA (346 346) and found the SA cabin service short of exceptional, but certainly up there with the likes of LX QF NZ AC CA BA (recently experienced, not distorted memories). Cabin crew were cheerful, helpful, regularly attentive even on the short LOSJNB sector, and food and drinks well above average.

The twice-as-long sector IAHLOS by UA was an entirely different matter. Beautiful new aircraft, well fitted out in Y, most enjoyable. But the cabin service was abysmal. Cabin crew attended four times during the 11+ hours onboard, twice with food cart and drinks cart many hours apart. Not once did I see another drinks cart or even an attendant with water bottle[s]. If anything was needed the call button was essential. This on a very heavily loaded flight. Rating out of ten?

Next week CPTJNBIAD with SA to which I look with pleasurable anticipation. And likewise LAXPEKSYD with CA. But the two-stop expedition east-coast to west, acknowledging the domestic nature, engenders different thoughts entirely.

At times I consider comparing operators to have inbuilt idiosyncrasies that render such comparisons somewhat unfair. But on what other basis can one mount evaluation of comparative services?

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