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A388CC
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VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 8:36 am

VS have announced that they are looking at options to replace their aging 747 leisure fleet which are coming off of lease around 2019. There is talk about the A330NEO and 787 being a possible replacement. I really don't know what aircraft VS will go for.
 
cedarjet
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 8:53 am

Isn't the whole fleet "leisure"? I don't know any business travellers, the real hell-for-leather Business Traveller subscribers, who even consider Virgin as an option. For one thing, it's just too many alliance miles to leave on the table. I am sure most of their pax, even out of LHR, are just slightly high-end occasional travellers, mostly on city breaks to New York, San Francisco - or London. If you're invested in any mileage programme outside the Flying Club, you're not flying Virgin.

It doesn't make any sense to me that they never joined Star Alliance when they were in bed with Singapore Airlines, in all that time Star didn't have a LHR-JFK flight (do they now? does UA fly LHR-JFK or still only EWR?) and VS do bring other important routes to the table. Hopefully Delta will bring them into SkyTeam and they'll start appearing on business travellers' itineraries. Til then, I have my gold oneworld (BA), gold Star Alliance (AC) and silver SkyTeam (KL) status to maintain, so I wouldn't touch them with a bargepole.
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
 
ba319-131
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 8:55 am

Quoting cedarjet (Reply 1):
does UA fly LHR-JFK or still only EWR?

- No, UA still only serve EWR.
111 732 733 734 735 736 73G 738 739,7M8 BBJ 741 742 743 744 752 753 762 763 764 772 77L 773 77W L15 D10 D30 D40 AB3 AB6 312 313 318 319 320 20N 321 21N 332 333 342 343 345 346 359 351 388 CS1 CS3 I86 154 SSJ CRJ CR7 CR9 CRK 145 170 175 220
 
behramjee
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 8:58 am

this can be the saving grace for their A380 order if Airbus allows them to cancel the 6 units in exchange for 9 A330-900NEOs.
 
A388CC
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:29 am

Quoting cedarjet (Reply 1):
Isn't the whole fleet "leisure"? I don't know any business travellers, the real hell-for-leather Business Traveller subscribers, who even consider Virgin as an option.

They consider their LGW & MAN routes leisure routes because they operate routes to Orlando, Las Vegas and the Caribbean rather than routes from LHR. I can't really comment on business flyers not choosing VS apart from knowing my dad doesn't fly with them and chooses BA instead because he hates T3 compared to T5.
 
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GCT64
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:58 am

Most passengers on most planes on all airlines from Heathrow (and from most other airports) are leisure travellers:

Heathrow stats:

Percentage of business travellers in 2013: 30% (20.7 million)
Percentage of leisure travellers in 2013: 70% (49.3 million)
http://www.heathrowairport.com/about...pany-information/facts-and-figures

So before we get into an argument about VS versus BA etc. for business travellers, let's recognise we know exactly which part of the VS fleet we are talking about (747s from LGW, MAN, GLA etc.) and not divert the discussion.

A330-900 versus 787-9/10 looks to be a lower cost of purchase v lower cost of operation decision.
Flown in: A20N,A21N,A30B,A306,A310,A319,A320,A321,A332,A333,A343,A346,A359,A388,BA11,BU31,(..56 more types..),VC10,WESX
 
StTim
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 10:18 am

I have flown Virgin Business to and from SA many times. Great service. I know others who use them for the Kangaroo route - or used to anyhow.

Surprisingly for many of us this side of the pond the miles and statuis are not the first things on our mind. The timing and the service offered are more important.
 
bobnwa
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 10:48 am

Quoting cedarjet (Reply 1):
Isn't the whole fleet "leisure"? I don't know any business travellers, the real hell-for-leather Business Traveller subscribers, who even consider Virgin as an option

Me thinks that maybe you know the wrong business travelers!
 
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bjwonline
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 11:43 am

Will be interesting to see what does happen here.

I myself believe in some ways the 787 was the wrong choice for VS. They would have been better off with the A350 family as it covers their needs better across the (now two) available options. But they have gone with the 789 and I'm sure it will serve them well. So I think if they they are trying to limit the number of aircraft types (which unless you are TG, then you would assume they are) they should go for even more 787's.

I believe they will find the 789's added on earlier in the year will be too small to replace the 744 at LHR as per their plan so we could see another 787 order but for the -10. This could allow them to make all LHR operations 787 and move the 330's to leisure in a higher density config. This would then result in just two aircraft types in the VS business and fairly nicely partitioned. Boeing at LHR and Airbus at LGW/MAN. The only route that could be a problem is CUN, I'm not sure if the 330 could make it?

The other problem is the A380 deposits but it could be a possibility that we see Delta step in here and do some kind of deal if or when they order the A330neo as it's anticipated they very well may.
 
Someone83
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 11:53 am

What about a high density version of the A380. If they can fill their 744, it should be possible to do it with a A380, and it would for sure be a CASM optimised airplane
 
BlueShamu330s
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 11:58 am

Quoting bjwonline (Reply 8):
The only route that could be a problem is CUN, I'm not sure if the 330 could make it?

Easily. TCX do it day in, day out.

Rgds
Flying around India
 
TC957
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 12:02 pm

I think LGW - LAS could be an issue with a maxed-out loaded A330 as well.
Really hope VS do keep their A380 order too. Will be interesting for sure what will replace the 744's in 5 years time.
 
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bjwonline
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 12:29 pm

Quoting TC957 (Reply 11):
I think LGW - LAS could be an issue with a maxed-out loaded A330 as well.

Ahh, yes! Forgot about LAS. Although this could transfer to LHR. BA have proven it can work there...

Quoting TC957 (Reply 11):
Really hope VS do keep their A380 order too.

I hope they do too. I think VS could have some really cool innovations on an A380 but I feel I'm too realistic to believe we will ever see it in the sky   
 
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yellowtail
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 12:31 pm

Quoting bjwonline (Reply 8):
The only route that could be a problem is CUN, I'm not sure if the 330 could make it?

since not much cargo yes, it will do it with full pax load.

Quoting TC957 (Reply 11):
I think LGW - LAS could be an issue with a maxed-out loaded A330 as well.

as with above, no cargo so should be ok.
When in doubt, hold on to your altitude. No-one has ever collided with the sky.
 
BlueShamu330s
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 12:36 pm

Quoting TC957 (Reply 11):
I think LGW - LAS could be an issue with a maxed-out loaded A330 as well.

Flight plan routes normally come in at around 4800nm for LON/MAN-LAS.

Even the current A333 can manage LGW-LAS, as Virgin have demonstrated.

bmi also managed MAN-LAS with their A332s with no performance restrictions.

Rgds
Flying around India
 
jetwet1
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 12:36 pm

Quoting cedarjet (Reply 1):
Isn't the whole fleet "leisure"? I don't know any business travellers, the real hell-for-leather Business Traveller subscribers, who even consider Virgin as an option. For one thing, it's just too many alliance miles to leave on the table. I am sure most of their pax, even out of LHR, are just slightly high-end occasional travellers, mostly on city breaks to New York, San Francisco - or London. If you're invested in any mileage programme outside the Flying Club, you're not flying Virgin.

Not even close, VS has/had many corp contracts, though they have done their best to lose those to other airlines over the last few years, they still have many. On top of that, the primary routes from LHR all serve markets that have good business links to London/UK as well as tourists

Quoting someone83 (Reply 9):
What about a high density version of the A380. If they can fill their 744, it should be possible to do it with a A380, and it would for sure be a CASM optimised airplane

A high density version of the 388 is the last thing VS needs, VS can fill a 744 to MCO and LAS during peak seasons, but have issues filling them at other times, resulting in junk yields, also LAS is not 380 ready, so they lose one of their primary "leisure" routes, won't happen.

IMHO, it will either be 359's or 777x's, most likely 359's.
 
hibtastic
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 1:31 pm

Quoting jetwet1 (Reply 15):
IMHO, it will either be 359's or 777x's, most likely 359's.

Could they order the A359 and/or A35J and place that on LHR routes where they need the higher capacity and thus shift some 789's and A333's to the leisure routes? I suppose that would require some cabin reconfigurations.
 
roseflyer
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 2:14 pm

Quoting A388CC (Thread starter):
There is talk about the A330NEO and 787 being a possible replacement

That is a significant capacity drop. The 450 seat 747s are significantly bigger than the A330NEO. An A330-900 could fit about 300-320 seats in a high density 3 class configuration. Unless they eliminate upper class or try to squeeze economy seats, I see a huge capacity drop. The 787-10 would have the best chance of replacing the high density 747s since it is a little bigger than the A330-900, but only by about 15 seats. I guess VS might try to improve yields by operating a smaller airplane.

The A330NEO seems a bit redundant to me with VS´ 787 order. It has commonality with the A330s, but I would think that VS would just exercise its 787 options and maybe step up to the 787-10. The A330NEO does not really offer anything that the 787 cannot do. The A330NEO makes sense for airlines that have not committed to the 787, but seems like a strange choice for an airline about to receive its first 787-9. If VS really needs something closer to the 747 capacity, then another new airplane like the A350-1000 or 777x would be a closer fit. Unfortunately that would be another new type and likely costly.
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
 
slinky09
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 2:30 pm

Quoting cedarjet (Reply 1):

Isn't the whole fleet "leisure"? I don't know any business travellers, the real hell-for-leather Business Traveller subscribers, who even consider Virgin as an option. For one thing, it's just too many alliance miles to leave on the table. I am sure most of their pax, even out of LHR, are just slightly high-end occasional travellers, mostly on city breaks to New York, San Francisco - or London. If you're invested in any mileage programme outside the Flying Club, you're not flying Virgin.

A strangely ignorant post considering that a) it is not true and b) per above posts, most of BA's LHR traffic is leisure.

Quoting GCT64 (Reply 5):
A330-900 versus 787-9/10 looks to be a lower cost of purchase v lower cost of operation decision.

But also a conversion cost, VS has lots of Airbus type rated pilots, now switching to Boeing as the B787 is introduced to replace the A340s ... whereas the current Airbus pilots could switch to an A330-800/900 with more ease.

Quoting bjwonline (Reply 8):
I myself believe in some ways the 787 was the wrong choice for VS. They would have been better off with the A350 family as it covers their needs better across the (now two) available options. But they have gone with the 789 and I'm sure it will serve them well.

Me too, I think a mix of A350-900 / 1000 would have suited VS's network better. As it is, VS is engaged in significant capacity cutting.

Quoting hibtastic (Reply 16):
Could they order the A359 and/or A35J and place that on LHR routes where th
ey need the higher capacity and thus shift some 789's and A333's to the leisure routes? I suppose that would require some cabin reconfigurations.

Well, that's one option to recoup any deposits for the A380 order - otherwise VS and Airbus have something else up their sleeve but I doubt we'll be seeing A380s in VS livery at LGW.
 
ManchesterMAN
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 2:40 pm

Quoting cedarjet (Reply 1):
Isn't the whole fleet "leisure"? I don't know any business travellers, the real hell-for-leather Business Traveller subscribers, who even consider Virgin as an option. For one thing, it's just too many alliance miles to leave on the table. I am sure most of their pax, even out of LHR, are just slightly high-end occasional travellers, mostly on city breaks to New York, San Francisco - or London. If you're invested in any mileage programme outside the Flying Club, you're not flying Virgin.

Well you can earn Skymiles on VS, so that is a sizeable audience of frequent flyers who would choose VS.
Flown: A300,A319,A320,A321,A330,A340.A380,717,727,737,747,757,767,777,DC9,DC10,MD11,MD80,F100,F50,ERJ,E190,CRJ,BAe146,Da
 
vsflyer747400
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 4:28 pm

I posted this comment a few weeks ago on the v-flyer website......

Whatever they choose will still lead to a reduction in seats available. The LGW 747's iirc seat 455 pax? The A350-1000 site says it seats (in a typical arrangement) 369 - so thats nearly 20% less seating for starters, the 787-10 is even worse at i think 323 (over 30% loss in seats). Not an issue at off-peak times but cometh the peak on routes like MCO we could see a lot of travellers disappointed if they cannot get flights due to less seats being available. Unless of course frequencies are increased seasonally (slots permitting). The Boeing 777-9X looks to be closest in terms of seats at around 400. I am sad to think that we will probably never see the A380 in VS colours however I suppose the option to lease A380's rather than own could always be a possibility.

I received a reply commenting on the potentaial reduction in capacity and the potential implication that fewer seats on high demand routes would lead to higher fares.....to which I said..

I hadn't thought about that but you make a very good point about increases in fare. On a typical peak (summer school holiday) day when using the MCO route as an example you have 2 x LGW, 2 x MAN and 1 x GLA (weekends only i know) - so 5 flights at a potential 455 seats per flight - so 2275 seats in total.

Factor in the other LGW 747 routes like LAS, CUN and HAV and the loss in seat numbers increases even further.

Now lets say VS go down the A350-1000 route and working on the Airbus figures of 369 pax, the same 5 flights bring in only 1845 seats in total. A loss of 430 seats - almost a full 747's worth!!! Just on one destination alone.

So, potential scenarios are:
1 - less seats and higher fares
2 - Increased frequencies - if they can get slots

Could there be a place for a sub-fleet of A380's or maybe the 747-8? I am sure Boeing would love to do a deal to sell some 747-8's

The eventual issue here is that DL appear to be calling the shots on some major issues, even though they don't hold a majority share. I know that they can approach Airbus and Boeing and use the combined airlines requirements as a major bargaining chip in fleet negotaiations.

Is it me but do I slowly but surely see VS more and more becoming DLUK?
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ScottB
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 4:30 pm

Quoting slinky09 (Reply 18):
But also a conversion cost, VS has lots of Airbus type rated pilots, now switching to Boeing as the B787 is introduced to replace the A340s ... whereas the current Airbus pilots could switch to an A330-800/900 with more ease.

In the grand scheme of things, the cost of retraining a pilot once to go between Airbus & Boeing (or vice versa) types is practically negligible. Maintenance commonality with the incoming 787's and existing A330's would be more compelling.

Quoting behramjee (Reply 3):
this can be the saving grace for their A380 order if Airbus allows them to cancel the 6 units in exchange for 9 A330-900NEOs.

Given the lengthy delays in the A380 program, it's likely that VS may be able to cancel the A380 order without penalty anyway, so Airbus would still need to price aggressively in a competitive tender.
 
MCOflyer
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 4:33 pm

I have to agree with Roseflyer about the significant capacity drop. Some of their 747's seat 455 passengers. If they had to choose now, id say the 77W would win hands down. But for deliveries in 2018, id say the 779x. Can do all the missions their 744's do without loosing number of seats. The A350-1000 just doesn't fit the bill in terms of seat count. Ranger wise, The A350-1000 compared to the 779X wins by a couple hundred of miles but the 777 wins in terms of seat count. Hopefully Boeing gives them a smashing deal and wins this order.
Never be afraid to stand up for who you are.
 
slinky09
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 4:41 pm

Quoting ScottB (Reply 21):
Given the lengthy delays in the A380 program, it's likely that VS may be able to cancel the A380 order without penalty anyway, so Airbus would still need to price aggressively in a competitive tender.

Unfortunately, VS delayed their deliveries before Airbus informed them of an enforced delay, VS therefore didn't get a pot of cash from Airbus.

Quoting ScottB (Reply 21):
n the grand scheme of things, the cost of retraining a pilot once to go between Airbus & Boeing (or vice versa) types is practically negligible. Maintenance commonality with the incoming 787's and existing A330's would be more compelling.

Thanks for that, understood!
 
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adg737800
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 5:59 pm

Logic would say 787-10s (wins from my armchair on the commonality with the 787-9 fleet, reducing costs etc etc) but logic went out of the window a long, long time ago with VS.

I wonder how many seats they could cram into a beach fleet 787-10? We know that their 787-9s are going 3-3-3 in Y after all.
 
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Stitch
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 6:14 pm

I have to believe that by now that VS can cancel their A380 order without any penalty and just have not done so for PR purposes (both for them and for Airbus).

As such, I would strongly expect this order will go to the 787-10 as it maintains commonality with the 787-9 and offers both strong passenger capacity and strong cargo capacity.

As for pilot costs, Boeing Flight Services at LGW is handing the training of VS' flight crews and they've added an additional simulator so VS could just train the rest of their Airbus pilots on the 787.

The other option would be the 777-9, which would give them similar passenger capacity (and much better cargo capacity) than the 747-400.

[Edited 2014-07-28 11:20:18]
 
Boeing74741R
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 6:37 pm

If VS no longer want their A380s on order, then I suspect it will be either the A330-900neo or the A350/900-1000 that eventually gets ordered. Airbus will probably not want to lose a customer altogether if they cancel and they've done a similar deal before (i.e. the outstanding A346s they had on order were converted to A333s) furthermore, I suspect if VS didn't see the A330neo as suitable, they wouldn't have called for it to be produced.

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 17):

I disagree about the A330neo being "redundant". The 'leisure' routes don't need the range of the 787 and the A330-300 has already been used on some of the 'leisure' routes. There's also the fact that the 'leisure' fleet will probably have more Y seats and less PE/UCS seats than the 789s being delivered for use out of LHR, so like the 744s at present, they would necessitate a cabin reconfiguration if swapping from one base to another, so one argument for commonality is flawed. After all, it is rare to see LGW-based 744s operating LHR routes and vice versa as they're configured differently.

I can see why it would be easy to order more 787s, but an order for Airbus' instead also has its own merits.

[Edited 2014-07-28 11:39:01]
 
phunc
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 7:04 pm

Quoting cedarjet (Reply 1):
Isn't the whole fleet "leisure"? I don't know any business travellers, the real hell-for-leather Business Traveller subscribers, who even consider Virgin as an option. For one thing, it's just too many alliance miles to leave on the table.

Because you don't know any doesn't mean there aren't any. Silly comment.

Quoting blueshamu330s (Reply 10):
Easily. TCX do it day in, day out.
Quoting blueshamu330s (Reply 14):
Flight plan routes normally come in at around 4800nm for LON/MAN-LAS.

Even the current A333 can manage LGW-LAS, as Virgin have demonstrated.

bmi also managed MAN-LAS with their A332s with no performance restrictions.

A332 is more capable than the A333 in terms of range. VS operated the 333 to LAS in the winter but it can be a struggle in the summer from a take-off performance issue.

CUN on an A333 can be difficult if you factor in cargo load.
 
ytz
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 7:17 pm

Quoting A388CC (Reply 4):
They consider their LGW & MAN routes leisure routes because they operate routes to Orlando, Las Vegas and the Caribbean rather than routes from LHR.

Yet, they operate 744s on JFK-LHR....
 
anstar
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 7:32 pm

Quoting mcoflyer (Reply 22):
I have to agree with Roseflyer about the significant capacity drop. Some of their 747's seat 455 passengers. If they had to choose now, id say the 77W would win hands down.

Thats to say they will replace capacity like for like.

They are replacing the LHR 747's with 787's so whats to stop them doing the same at LGW? We've already seen some destinations see increased frequency with the A330 rather than a 747 (ANU, GND, UVF).
 
Chaostheory
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 7:49 pm

Quoting phunc (Reply 27):
VS operated the 333 to LAS in the winter but it can be a struggle in the summer from a take-off performance issue.

Not sure where you're getting your numbers from bud but they're wrong.

There are no issues with getting the A330 with T772 engines out of LAS on an ISA+20 day at MTOW.

We manage it at RUH without any issues in a hotter climate too.
 
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DocLightning
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 8:07 pm

Quoting GCT64 (Reply 5):
A330-900 versus 787-9/10 looks to be a lower cost of purchase v lower cost of operation decision.

It will come down to utilization. If they anticipate high utilization of this leisure fleet, then operational cost becomes more important. If they anticipate lower utilization then acquisition cost is more relevant.

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 17):
The A330NEO seems a bit redundant to me with VS´ 787 order. It has commonality with the A330s, but I would think that VS would just exercise its 787 options and maybe step up to the 787-10. The A330NEO does not really offer anything that the 787 cannot do. The A330NEO makes sense for airlines that have not committed to the 787, but seems like a strange choice for an airline about to receive its first 787-9.

And then there's this. Their options on the 787 might be cost effective enough that exercise those would solve both issues.

Quoting ytz (Reply 28):
Yet, they operate 744s on JFK-LHR....

That's because those are two of the world's most major cities. Only Tokyo enjoys similar prestige. You can't have "enough" capacity on NYC-LON.
-Doc Lightning-

"The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars."
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boysteve
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 8:29 pm

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 17):
That is a significant capacity drop. The 450 seat 747s are significantly bigger than the A330NEO. An A330-900 could fit about 300-320 seats in a high density 3 class configuration. Unless they eliminate upper class or try to squeeze economy seats, I see a huge capacity drop. The 787-10 would have the best chance of replacing the high density 747s since it is a little bigger than the A330-900, but only by about 15 seats. I guess VS might try to improve yields by operating a smaller airplane.

It's not quite that simple. Attempting to increase yields would/could make Virgin Holidays less competitive against other holiday operators. Sure, I know people who would happily pay 'x%' more for a Virgin holiday than a (for example) Thomson equivalent. However 'x' is a small % number and not an unlimited one!
 
BlueShamu330s
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:01 pm

Quoting phunc (Reply 27):
A332 is more capable than the A333 in terms of range.

It is indeed.  
Quoting phunc (Reply 27):
CUN on an A333 can be difficult if you factor in cargo load.

Cargo from CUN to the UK is predominantly perishables like lemons, mangoes and berries. Capacity bulks out before weight every time.

Performance wise, the A333 is a year round possibility, which will only improve with the neo.

Rgds
Flying around India
 
flyingcello
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:28 pm

The LGW 744s are younger by some margin than the LHR 744s. The LGW fleet have also recently been refurbished inside, so I wouldn't think there is any panic to replace them. Also remember that the 'leisure' fleet operates from MAN and GLA as well (and BFS for a few flights next year). So LHR / LGW isn't the whole story for VS.
Then, we don't know what influence Delta have in this decision (if any). The 330neo would seem to make sense in that context, but VS need to 'right size' for their own market. I think the 787-10 will come and for me, the 779 would come at around the right time to replace the 744s, and compliment the 787s. The A330s can be returned to the leasor, leaving a 787-9 / 787-10 / 777-9 fleet.
But who knows!
 
boysteve
Posts: 890
Joined: Sun Apr 25, 2004 7:02 am

RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:50 pm

Quoting flyingcello (Reply 34):
The A330s can be returned to the leasor, leaving a 787-9 / 787-10 / 777-9 fleet.
But who knows!

No airbus? What about the A380 deposits?
 
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Stitch
Posts: 27509
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2005 4:26 am

RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Mon Jul 28, 2014 10:46 pm

Quoting Boysteve (Reply 35):
No airbus? What about the A380 deposits?

I think the relevant question now is "what A380 deposits?".
 
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sunrisevalley
Posts: 5392
Joined: Tue Jul 06, 2004 3:26 am

RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Tue Jul 29, 2014 1:54 am

Quoting adg737800 (Reply 24):
I wonder how many seats they could cram into a beach fleet 787-10?

In a concurrent thread a 365-seat layout has been mentioned but something pushing 400 seats is probably possible. You have JQ with 330-seats in a 788 and ANA with 395 seats in a 789 so it depends how tight they want to make it.

[Edited 2014-07-28 18:55:23]
 
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Boeing778X
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Tue Jul 29, 2014 2:12 am

I was just saying on the other VS thread that they'll get a twin.

And right now, the things that are seeming to be the most likely are the A350-900, A350-1000 and 777-9.

Maybe all three!
United Airlines: $#!ttin' On Everyone Since 1931
 
fpetrutiu
Posts: 747
Joined: Tue Aug 07, 2007 11:28 pm

RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Tue Jul 29, 2014 3:18 am

I would agree here. Discounting any deals/deposits with Airbus, the 777-9 would seem to be the winner here hands down. with the Airbus deposits, the A350-900 or 1000 could be an option although with the 787's already on order seems to a degree a bit redundant. I could see VS with a fleet of 787/777, but I think this is Airbus's order to lose.
Florin
Orlando, FL
 
anstar
Posts: 3348
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2003 3:49 am

RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Tue Jul 29, 2014 5:51 am

Quoting Boeing778X (Reply 38):
I was just saying on the other VS thread that they'll get a twin.

It will definately be a twin. But there are only 7 Leisure 747's to replace.

Does it make sense to introduce a third type to replace these 7 aircraft? I don't think so myself, hence why it will be 330neo or 787-10's IMHO.
 
Prost
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Tue Jul 29, 2014 7:21 am

Many carriers seem comfortable replacing 747s with smaller gauge aircraft, VS might be added to that list. Due to the A380 order, I think a A35J would suit their fleet and routes quite nicely.
 
flyingcello
Posts: 208
Joined: Thu Jul 15, 2010 8:31 pm

RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Tue Jul 29, 2014 7:24 pm

779X allows VS to cover the 744 almost like for like...and this is a capacity that they use to MCO and LAS. Also, with both LHR and LGW slot-constrained, big is good. 779X counterbalances the smaller 789s and A330s. The A350J does something similar, but the 779X is shaping up to be an incredible performer. I wonder if VS regret at slecting the A346 over the 773ER might be inthe back f their minds (and yes, I know the 773ER was only in play for the second A346 order).

As for the Airbus deposits (if they are still around), could they be transferred to Delta?
 
Boeing74741R
Posts: 1491
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Tue Jul 29, 2014 8:52 pm

Quoting flyingcello (Reply 34):

G-VWOW and G-VROC are both LHR-based and are younger than G-VXLG and G-VAST in the 'leisure' fleet. In terms of age, LHR has the oldest 3 and the youngest 2 747s in the whole VS fleet, with leisure having LG and ST from the 90s plus the Alitalia 747s from the early-2000s.

As you say though, the 'leisure' fleet were refitted within the last 3 years and now all have the same IFE, so they'll be around for another few years at least. Shame it's not as simple as moving aircraft from one base to the other as it would necessitate a cabin refit, not that it hasn't been done before though!

In any case, the 'leisure' 747s are a lot younger than some of the -200s VS have operated in the past!

[Edited 2014-07-29 13:53:19]
 
flyingcello
Posts: 208
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RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Tue Jul 29, 2014 9:08 pm

Another thought...would late-build 773ERs not suit the bill here also. Likely to be available at a time of VS choosing, and possibly at a price of their choosing too! It's well known that Boeing need to fill pre-777X production slots. Also, it's the sort of tactic that their owners Delta might like!

[Edited 2014-07-29 14:19:17]
 
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Stitch
Posts: 27509
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2005 4:26 am

RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Tue Jul 29, 2014 9:13 pm

Quoting flyingcello (Reply 44):
Another thought...would late-build 773ERs not suit the bill here also.

  

Such a plane would give them the balance of the high cargo volume of the A340-600 and the high passenger volume of the 747-400 while being more economical than both to operate in addition to excellent delivery availability and sales price.
 
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sunrisevalley
Posts: 5392
Joined: Tue Jul 06, 2004 3:26 am

RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Tue Jul 29, 2014 9:26 pm

Quoting flyingcello (Reply 44):
Another thought...would late-build 773ERs not suit the bill here also. Likely to be available at a time of VS choosing,

Then there are the early EK 77W's coming off lease as well.
 
flyingcello
Posts: 208
Joined: Thu Jul 15, 2010 8:31 pm

RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Tue Jul 29, 2014 9:26 pm

Quoting Boeing74741R (Reply 43):

G-VWOW and G-VROC are both LHR-based and are younger than G-VXLG and G-VAST in the 'leisure' fleet.

Yep, but something in the back of my memory thinks that a couple of frames were transferred from LGW to LHR a few years back...maybe these two?

Not sure...memory not what it used to be  
 
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Richard28
Posts: 2751
Joined: Thu Aug 14, 2003 5:42 am

RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Wed Jul 30, 2014 12:27 pm

Quoting flyingcello (Reply 47):
Yep, but something in the back of my memory thinks that a couple of frames were transferred from LGW to LHR a few years back...maybe these two?

I think it was the other way around. G-VXLG and G-VAST were based at LHR but were re-configured a few years back and moved to LGW.

G-VWOW & G-VROC have always been in LHR config and based there.

[Edited 2014-07-30 05:44:55]
 
AAMDanny
Posts: 331
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 4:06 pm

RE: VS Searching For Leisure Fleet Replacement

Wed Jul 30, 2014 1:08 pm

G-VROC/WOW/FAB/BIG/HOT are LHR based, they all have AVOD (retrofitted in 2005 I belive? Correct me if I'm wrong!)

G-VAST/XLG and G-VTOP (TOP has left the fleet now to Orient Thai) did move from LHR to LGW and was configured into the higher density configuration. These aircraft did not get the new AVOD IFE system, they stayed with the tape-loop system.

Then there is G-VLIP/ROM/GAL/ROS/ROY which are in the LGW fleet, the ex-Alitalia fleet. These came with a different IFE system (called Nova if memory serves me correctly)

VAST/XLG/TOP had slightly different galley config, economy seating and IFE system compared to the ex-Alitalia fleet.

But since all 7 aircraft have been retrofitted with a newer touch screen IFE system, new Y seats and the updated W seat, and the J class was given a deep clean and refresh, as they all already the herringbone style Upper Class installed.

Sometimes, LHR 747's operate out of LGW, sometimes it's a sub when an aircraft goes in the hanger but sometimes it's to add additional J/W capacity on certain routes (usually BGI, but in the past it's been used in UVF/ANU etc) but now the 3 class A333 is at LGW it's not so common anymore.

It will be interesting to see what VS order, I have a feeling they may go slightly smaller and aim for more frequency over capacity as the Leisure market does fluctuate throughout the year. I wouldn't be surprised for a B777 order for flight deck commonality with the B787's, or A330NEO's.

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