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sho69607
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Posts: 54
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2010 4:07 am

Why do NFL teams charter large wide body planes?

Mon Oct 26, 2020 4:17 am

I know NFL teams travel with a lot of personnel and cargo, but do they actually come close to maxing out a plane as big as a 747 in terms of payload? Even with the players spaced out for leg room, there is still a lot of capacity left in an aircraft that large, correct? I could see a 767 or a 787 getting filled up, but a 777 or larger? I’m guessing 150 people and Maybe 5-10,000lbs of cargo with each team. Is this roughly about how much payload teams bring with them?
 
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exFWAOONW
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Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2009 10:32 pm

Re: Why do NFL teams charter large wide body planes?

Mon Oct 26, 2020 10:27 am

I doubt the teams request a specific type of a/c for a charter. They may request a specific number of seats (to ensure room to spread out) and the airline provides whatever is available with at least that many seats.
 
zanl188
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Joined: Sat Oct 21, 2006 9:05 pm

Re: Why do NFL teams charter large wide body planes?

Mon Oct 26, 2020 12:02 pm

Lots of variables with this question.... Pre-season game, regular game, post-season, Super Bowl? Type of market team is resident in? Etc
 
shamrock137
Posts: 414
Joined: Mon Jul 25, 2005 7:10 am

Re: Why do NFL teams charter large wide body planes?

Mon Oct 26, 2020 12:19 pm

sho69607 wrote:
I know NFL teams travel with a lot of personnel and cargo, but do they actually come close to maxing out a plane as big as a 747 in terms of payload? Even with the players spaced out for leg room, there is still a lot of capacity left in an aircraft that large, correct? I could see a 767 or a 787 getting filled up, but a 777 or larger? I’m guessing 150 people and Maybe 5-10,000lbs of cargo with each team. Is this roughly about how much payload teams bring with them?


Its not really about cargo, more about premium seating. Most of these charters will use aircraft with low density configurations, the Denver Broncos have been using a UA 772 with the 50 seat Polaris configuration. They may only have 150-200 people, but if each player is being given their own row, or at least keeping the seat next to them open, you run out of space quickly. Here is an interesting video providing some more insight. Some teams do fly narrow bodies, but will charter 2 aircraft.
 
Lpbri
Posts: 286
Joined: Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:18 pm

Re: Why do NFL teams charter large wide body planes?

Mon Oct 26, 2020 5:50 pm

There is the issue of catering. These flights are very generously catered. 757s used to be very common, but most of them have had food prep equipment removed. Big boys that don't eat light.
 
phllax
Posts: 693
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 6:53 am

Re: Why do NFL teams charter large wide body planes?

Tue Oct 27, 2020 2:43 am

It depends on the team. The Eagles contract for example stipulates 2 wide bodies per regular season. Historically they have chosen to use it for the Dallas game and another West Coast game, although with the Rams now in LA that could have changed. This is also a team that busses/trains to NY, DC and Baltimore. Post season is most always widebody.
 
sho69607
Topic Author
Posts: 54
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2010 4:07 am

Re: Why do NFL teams charter large wide body planes?

Tue Oct 27, 2020 4:55 pm

shamrock137 wrote:
sho69607 wrote:
I know NFL teams travel with a lot of personnel and cargo, but do they actually come close to maxing out a plane as big as a 747 in terms of payload? Even with the players spaced out for leg room, there is still a lot of capacity left in an aircraft that large, correct? I could see a 767 or a 787 getting filled up, but a 777 or larger? I’m guessing 150 people and Maybe 5-10,000lbs of cargo with each team. Is this roughly about how much payload teams bring with them?


Its not really about cargo, more about premium seating. Most of these charters will use aircraft with low density configurations, the Denver Broncos have been using a UA 772 with the 50 seat Polaris configuration. They may only have 150-200 people, but if each player is being given their own row, or at least keeping the seat next to them open, you run out of space quickly. Here is an interesting video providing some more insight. Some teams do fly narrow bodies, but will charter 2 aircraft.


That explains this seating chart for Atlas Air's 747's. I believe two of the 747's in their fleet operate in this VIP configuration.

https://www.atlasair.com/passenger-serv ... ger-fleet/
 
shamrock137
Posts: 414
Joined: Mon Jul 25, 2005 7:10 am

Re: Why do NFL teams charter large wide body planes?

Tue Oct 27, 2020 5:45 pm

sho69607 wrote:

That explains this seating chart for Atlas Air's 747's. I believe two of the 747's in their fleet operate in this VIP configuration.

https://www.atlasair.com/passenger-serv ... ger-fleet/


Interesting to compare to the NBA or NHL. I know a few NHL teams that were using the Swift Air 734 in VIP configuration which looks like it takes 68 passengers.
 
IFlyVeryLittle
Posts: 204
Joined: Mon Jan 29, 2018 7:31 pm

Re: Why do NFL teams charter large wide body planes?

Wed Oct 28, 2020 4:58 pm

Wide bodies need wide bodies.
 
chrisair
Posts: 2230
Joined: Fri Sep 01, 2000 11:32 pm

Re: Why do NFL teams charter large wide body planes?

Fri Oct 30, 2020 7:20 am

They carry a lot of stuff and a large traveling party (well, they used to. Not sure what COVID has done). College teams truck it. NFL flies it.

College charters often are seated at 3x3. It’s not uncommon for players to sit 3x3 either. Certainly the band, cheerleaders and support staff/hangers on do sit 3x3 if the plane is full. One of the stranger things about the college charters I’ve been on is overhead space. It’s usually taken up by Gatorade or water bottles or food.

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