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IFlyVeryLittle
Topic Author
Posts: 205
Joined: Mon Jan 29, 2018 7:31 pm

Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 4:11 pm

Are there potentially money-making city pairs that can can't be exploited right now because of existing airliner range?
 
Prost
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 4:14 pm

LHR-AKL and LHR-SYD are the first that comes to mind for me.
 
KGarc21
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 4:17 pm

HND/NRT-GRU
 
Cubsrule
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 4:18 pm

Prost wrote:
LHR-AKL and LHR-SYD are the first that comes to mind for me.


Yup. Maybe also East Asia-Deep South America? NRT-SCL is about the same length as LHR-SYD; NRT-GRU is 1,000 miles farther.
 
MIflyer12
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 4:29 pm

IFlyVeryLittle wrote:
Are there potentially money-making city pairs that can can't be exploited right now because of existing airliner range?


That's a question at conflict with itself. Empty planes can fly pretty far - a detail that seems to shock people rather regularly here with new threads about how empty aircraft managed to fly farther than their stated range. (Shocking!) But empty (or empty-ish, say blocking fifty seats) don't make money. Existence of a few routes - say, those that really need an extra 1000 nm of range beyond the standard designs - don't create enough of a market to justify investment on the part of manufacturers. A345s didn't sell. 77Ls didn't sell. A380s didn't sell well enough, certainly not in use that required the incremental range. LAX772LR has a thread observing that the A350-900ULR isn't selling, either: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1454481

Don't think like a French politician, looking for excuses to throw lots of public money at a minor commercial opportunity just to support your industrial strategy.
 
Antarius
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 4:30 pm

Prost wrote:
LHR-AKL and LHR-SYD are the first that comes to mind for me.


To piggy back, all the nearby airports as well. LHR-MEL, LHR-BNE etc.
 
IFlyVeryLittle
Topic Author
Posts: 205
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 4:47 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
IFlyVeryLittle wrote:
Are there potentially money-making city pairs that can can't be exploited right now because of existing airliner range?


That's a question at conflict with itself. Empty planes can fly pretty far - a detail that seems to shock people rather regularly here with new threads about how empty aircraft managed to fly farther than their stated range. (Shocking!) But empty (or empty-ish, say blocking fifty seats) don't make money. Existence of a few routes - say, those that really need an extra 1000 nm of range beyond the standard designs - don't create enough of a market to justify investment on the part of manufacturers. A345s didn't sell. 77Ls didn't sell. A380s didn't sell well enough, certainly not in use that required the incremental range. LAX772LR has a thread observing that the A350-900ULR isn't selling, either: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1454481

Don't think like a French politician, looking for excuses to throw lots of public money at a minor commercial opportunity just to support your industrial strategy.

Hence the phrase, "Money-Making."
 
MrPeanut
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 4:55 pm

I don’t think there are any. Ultra long hauls are extremely expensive to run. These flights require more labor to operate, takes multiple aircraft to operate the route with any regularity, and utilizes 1 plane during a 24 hour period, when that same plane can be used twice within a 24 hour period on a traditional long haul route. Combine all this with the fact that ultra-long haul destinations often don’t have the ties (business or leisure) required to maintain fares at a profitable level.

I still believe that the only way this dynamic would change would be with the introduction of a plane that compresses the travel time considerably and thus allows for better aircraft utilization and lower labor costs.
 
LASVegan
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 4:58 pm

(As a disclaimer, this assumes post covid picks up where pre covid left off) I would think NYC-SYD could make money. BOG-DXB also comes to mind. DEN-DXB I feel could be profitable but is pretty tight on the tight on the performance for the A350-900. I’m not sure if the 350 could do it without costly weight hits.
 
VMCA787
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 5:00 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
LAX772LR has a thread observing that the A350-900ULR isn't selling, either: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1454481
.


The A350-900ULR isn't a type aircraft. It is a mod, so if the 350-900 is selling well so is the ULR. In reality, it costs Airbus nothing to modify the aircraft. It has a modified fuel system and the FWD Cargo compartment is sealed and there is no cargo handling system installed. Just an FYI.
 
N965UW
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 5:35 pm

Not an issue of aircraft capability, but the LaGuardia perimeter rule creates an artificial range limitation. Imagine LGA-LAX/SFO on an A321T.
 
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PatrickZ80
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Nov 24, 2020 5:52 pm

N965UW wrote:
Not an issue of aircraft capability, but the LaGuardia perimeter rule creates an artificial range limitation. Imagine LGA-LAX/SFO on an A321T.


True, but we're talking cities. Not airports. LaGuardia is in New York, just like JFK and Newark. Therefor, any flight that can't be operated from LaGuardia can be operated from either of those.

Same goes for Washington National / Ronald Reagan by the way, flights can be operated from Dulles or Baltimore/Washington. All of them serve the city of Washington and therefor count as one.

So we're basically talking near antipodes that, except for the aircraft range, can be operated profitable. Like for example Beijing - Buenos Aires or Johannesburg - Honolulu. No aircraft can operate these routes non-stop.
 
Q
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Wed Nov 25, 2020 12:24 am

HNL-LHR or MIA-NRT

Q
 
Ishrion
Posts: 3637
Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2019 6:17 am

Re: Impossible city pairs

Wed Nov 25, 2020 1:02 am

Q wrote:
HNL-LHR or MIA-NRT

Q


Both of those routes are achievable with the range of current aircraft such as the 777-200ER, 777-300ER, 787-9, or A350-900.

The problem comes down to the economical feasibility of the two routes which is likely why they haven't been launched yet (pre-COVID).
 
AngMoh
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Wed Nov 25, 2020 1:10 am

Q wrote:
HNL-LHR or MIA-NRT


Both can be done with today's A350 (non-ULR) and 787-9. Both are about 1000nm less than SIN-SFO, but the profitability is not there.

MrPeanut wrote:
I don’t think there are any. Ultra long hauls are extremely expensive to run. These flights require more labor to operate, takes multiple aircraft to operate the route with any regularity, and utilizes 1 plane during a 24 hour period, when that same plane can be used twice within a 24 hour period on a traditional long haul route. Combine all this with the fact that ultra-long haul destinations often don’t have the ties (business or leisure) required to maintain fares at a profitable level.


All the current ULR routes are replacements of existing one-stops (e.g. SIN-HKG/ICN-SFO to SIN-SFO and the proposed SYD-DXB/SIN-LHR to SYD-LHR). They reduce time taken and increase utilisation of the aircraft at expense of fuel consumption.
 
MrPeanut
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Wed Nov 25, 2020 1:43 pm

AngMoh wrote:
All the current ULR routes are replacements of existing one-stops (e.g. SIN-HKG/ICN-SFO to SIN-SFO and the proposed SYD-DXB/SIN-LHR to SYD-LHR). They reduce time taken and increase utilisation of the aircraft at expense of fuel consumption.


The OP is asking about new routes.
 
bfitzflyer
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Thu Nov 26, 2020 2:32 pm

JNB-SFO or JNB-LAX I am guessing would not be possible.
 
dfwjim1
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Thu Nov 26, 2020 4:27 pm

SFO - GRU. Has been tried in the past without any luck.
 
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PatrickZ80
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Thu Nov 26, 2020 5:17 pm

dfwjim1 wrote:
SFO - GRU. Has been tried in the past without any luck.


But technically it can be operated, no problem there. It's just that there is no market for it.

That's not what we're looking for here. We're looking for the opposite, namely city pairs for which there is a market but that technically can't be operated directly.
 
PlymSpotter
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Sat Nov 28, 2020 10:05 pm

I think there is another angle here - potentially money making routes which can't be operated primarily due to airport limitations. In other words, insufficient runway length / width / strength to accommodate the smallest aircraft which could viably operate a route. I wouldn't consider routes from the smaller of multi-airport cities to count, eliminating those like LCY, LGA, LIN etc...

Some suggestions:

Nuuk - Copenhagen (runway extension planned to operate this precise route)
Wellington - Singapore (Direct)
Bristol - Dubai
Southampton - Tenerife / Larnaca etc...
 
hoons90
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Sun Nov 29, 2020 6:45 am

PlymSpotter wrote:
I think there is another angle here - potentially money making routes which can't be operated primarily due to airport limitations. In other words, insufficient runway length / width / strength to accommodate the smallest aircraft which could viably operate a route. I wouldn't consider routes from the smaller of multi-airport cities to count, eliminating those like LCY, LGA, LIN etc...

Some suggestions:

Nuuk - Copenhagen (runway extension planned to operate this precise route)
Wellington - Singapore (Direct)
Bristol - Dubai
Southampton - Tenerife / Larnaca etc...


In that case, Dzaoudzi-Paris would be another example (although only one-way, since Paris-Dzaoudzi can operate nonstop.)
Long haul out of Busan that goes further than Helsinki will also be a challenge too, due to the terrain immediately after takeoff.
 
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PatrickZ80
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Sun Nov 29, 2020 12:35 pm

PlymSpotter wrote:
Bristol - Dubai


This one should be possible. Keep in mind that TUI flies Bristol - Orlando (Sanford) with their 787s. If a 787 can reach Orlando from Bristol, there's no reason why it wouldn't be able to reach Dubai which is closer than Orlando.
 
PlymSpotter
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Sun Nov 29, 2020 6:22 pm

PatrickZ80 wrote:
PlymSpotter wrote:
Bristol - Dubai


This one should be possible. Keep in mind that TUI flies Bristol - Orlando (Sanford) with their 787s. If a 787 can reach Orlando from Bristol, there's no reason why it wouldn't be able to reach Dubai which is closer than Orlando.


There's a couple of reasons - the Sanford flights are comparatively light charter flights with no cargo and blocked seats. Several years ago QR assessed BRS-DOH with a 332 or 788, but it wasn't viable and they ultimately chose less affluent CWL (with extra incentives), so BRS-DXB would be further out of reach even with a 'baby' widebody.
 
Ishrion
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Sun Nov 29, 2020 7:20 pm

PlymSpotter wrote:
PatrickZ80 wrote:
PlymSpotter wrote:
Bristol - Dubai


This one should be possible. Keep in mind that TUI flies Bristol - Orlando (Sanford) with their 787s. If a 787 can reach Orlando from Bristol, there's no reason why it wouldn't be able to reach Dubai which is closer than Orlando.


There's a couple of reasons - the Sanford flights are comparatively light charter flights with no cargo and blocked seats. Several years ago QR assessed BRS-DOH with a 332 or 788, but it wasn't viable and they ultimately chose less affluent CWL (with extra incentives), so BRS-DXB would be further out of reach even with a 'baby' widebody.


TUI operates BRS-CUN on the 787 which is 1,300 miles longer than BRS-DXB. Does BRS-CUN also block seats?

The current technology and range of the 787 should be able to make BRS-DXB despite the short runway at BRS. Even if the aircraft has some restrictions, it should easily be able to make a 3,500 mile flight to Dubai, meaning it's technically a possible city pair.
 
PlymSpotter
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Sun Nov 29, 2020 9:36 pm

Ishrion wrote:
TUI operates BRS-CUN on the 787 which is 1,300 miles longer than BRS-DXB. Does BRS-CUN also block seats?

The current technology and range of the 787 should be able to make BRS-DXB despite the short runway at BRS. Even if the aircraft has some restrictions, it should easily be able to make a 3,500 mile flight to Dubai, meaning it's technically a possible city pair.


BRS-CUN is really, really marginal. Since it launched there have been diversions to EMA, GLA and MAN (IIRC) for fuel - needing to make a stop seems to correlate with wet weather at BRS, which makes sense. I'm not sure if they block seats on CUN, I only enquired about Florida. However it stands to reason that they will do.

I disagree that it's technically possible. As I have said, we have a precedent - QR evaluated operating the 787 to DOH on at least two occasions and decided it wasn't feasible due to runway length, the second time they opted for CWL with incentives instead. This implies anywhere in the ME is going to be an issue with a 788.
 
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FlyRow
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Dec 01, 2020 7:18 am

Funny one maybe, but a commercial direct JFK-LCY.
 
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PatrickZ80
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Dec 01, 2020 8:02 am

FlyRow wrote:
Funny one maybe, but a commercial direct JFK-LCY.


Again, we're talking cities. Not airports.

While it's true this route cannot be performed directly, London has a lot more airports than City. Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, etc. For this question, they're all the same. It's not New York JFK - London City that counts, it's New York - London that counts. And that can be performed profitable, no problem at all.
 
nicode
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Dec 01, 2020 9:41 am

I'm thinking of CDG-PPT-CDG non stop of course.
Air Tahiti Nui did 2 or 3 PPT-CDG direct due to Covid-19, with block seats and light cargo.

This is possible but not with decent loads.
 
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OwnBoarder
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Dec 01, 2020 11:15 am

I have to agree with Patrick here. After all we're talking cities, as mentioned before and therefore there're more than enough airports (to rely on) to justify this city pair.
 
digitalcloud
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Thu Dec 03, 2020 1:44 pm

FlyRow wrote:
Funny one maybe, but a commercial direct JFK-LCY.


A direct JFK-LCY operated for many years. It was only the outbound sector that required the tech stop. Techincally the LCY-JFK route was also direct, but not non-stop.
 
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TWA772LR
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Sat Dec 05, 2020 5:49 am

PatrickZ80 wrote:
FlyRow wrote:
Funny one maybe, but a commercial direct JFK-LCY.


Again, we're talking cities. Not airports.

While it's true this route cannot be performed directly, London has a lot more airports than City. Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, etc. For this question, they're all the same. It's not New York JFK - London City that counts, it's New York - London that counts. And that can be performed profitable, no problem at all.

Given the distance and the short runway, it still is impossible with current aircraft technology to make it work nonstop especially westbound. We'll see if the A220 can make it work with a viable payload.
 
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PatrickZ80
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Sat Dec 05, 2020 12:49 pm

TWA772LR wrote:
Given the distance and the short runway, it still is impossible with current aircraft technology to make it work nonstop especially westbound. We'll see if the A220 can make it work with a viable payload.


If you're limited to London City airport, that's true. However as said, London has more airports. Heathrow has some mighty long runways, and since both Heathrow and City are in London they both qualify for flights out of London as if they were one.
 
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ojjunior
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Dec 08, 2020 2:57 am

dfwjim1 wrote:
SFO - GRU. Has been tried in the past without any luck.

Regular flights?
When and which airline?
 
T54A
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Dec 08, 2020 7:04 am

bfitzflyer wrote:
JNB-SFO or JNB-LAX I am guessing would not be possible.


Yip. JNB-JFK/ATL is a tough ask on a warm day. JNB-LAX is 9023nm GC.
 
dfwjim1
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Dec 08, 2020 5:54 pm

ojjunior wrote:
dfwjim1 wrote:
SFO - GRU. Has been tried in the past without any luck.

Regular flights?
When and which airline?


Varig and United
 
andrew1996
Posts: 163
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Dec 08, 2020 7:28 pm

PVG/PEK-GIG/GRU (more than 1,000 extra miles above the current SIN-EWR route).
 
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eta unknown
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Tue Dec 08, 2020 8:58 pm

ojjunior wrote:
dfwjim1 wrote:
SFO - GRU. Has been tried in the past without any luck.

Regular flights?
When and which airline?

VASP
 
aeromoe
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Re: Impossible city pairs

Wed Dec 09, 2020 5:18 pm

FlyRow wrote:
Funny one maybe, but a commercial direct JFK-LCY.

edit: someone already responded to this.

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