Why Qantas didn't fit 2-4-2 economy seating to the Boeing 787-9

20 replies

OOLflyer

Member since 13 Feb 2017

Total posts 8

I'm sorry, but this is not how we model these things.


For a start, 2-4-2 is 136 Economy seats while 3-3-3 is 154 seats.

So unless Economy loads reach or exceed 137 seats - 89% - the extra 18 seats add extra weight and therefore fuel burn for no return.

But let's assume that the first 136 Economy seats are sold at high-ish yield levels. The extra 18 need to sell at at least as high a fare level to offset the extra fuel burn. Yet according to this claim, they are likely to be sold at lower yielding fares.

This model can work for short-haul LCC services. But in reality, we are talking about ultra-long haul at at least 100 kg per passenger to carry (weight, baggage, catering).

The argument for 154 x 3-3-3 seating over 136 x 2-4-2 seating only wins when more than about 145 seats can be sold - and that's a 94% load.

aniljak

Member since 15 Sep 2012

Total posts 91

Japan airlines decision  to go 2-4-2 on their dreamliners has been a great decision  for them. Every travel forum is comparing Qantas's cramped seating against Japan airlines! They are getting the good publicity without  having to do anything! The average public do research their flights on internet and look at comfort and price, despite what some people  think. Economy passengers are far more savvy than airlines give crdit to

traveller90

Member since 29 Jan 2012

Total posts 6

Would love to see how much has this decision to go 3-3-3 cost Qantas in lost economy bookings? May mean more seats on the aircraft but you need to have people  wanting to fill them!  All the feedback is very negative when it comes to economy  passengers comfort. 2-4-2 seating and hubbing in Singapore  is what economy passengers want. Unfortunately Qantas only sems to care about the premium passengers.
Bottom line is most people don't even know what sort of plane they're flying on. Here and other AV communities, these things are dissected and J travellers care a bit more but that's it. For most people it's cost and convenience with no regard for seating layout. Even if you told them it's 3-3-3 on a 787 the average person wouldn't know what that means for quality. So, if they price it right, they'll lose nothing. 

Totally agree. - the majority of passengers today are price focused, with schedules and aircraft types secondary, let alone worrying about seating configurations. The old days are gone and the new budget aviator is not ruling the skies.

David

Member since 24 Oct 2010

Total posts 992

Japan airlines decision  to go 2-4-2 on their dreamliners has been a great decision  for them. Every travel forum is comparing Qantas's cramped seating against Japan airlines! They are getting the good publicity without  having to do anything! The average public do research their flights on internet and look at comfort and price, despite what some people  think. Economy passengers are far more savvy than airlines give crdit to

I'd suggest that "travel forums" represent the smallest fraction of a percentage of the travelling public, and "the average public" doesn't really do much research beyond price, schedule and perhaps a few inclusions. Further, I would think that while JAL's decision to go 2-4-2 may have earned them kudos in the rarefied circles of aviation, it's not effective as "good publicity" because it wouldn't translate into bookings unless one was comparing airlines flying to/from Japan or a common destination.

For example: every "aviation enthusiast" in Australia may well cite JAL over Qantas when it comes to Boeing 787 economy configs – and remember, "every aviation enthusiast" would still be the tiniest 0.0000001% slice of the flying public pie – but when you think about the routes each airline flies with its Dreamliners, none of them are going to book JAL's Boeing 787 compared to the Qantas Boeing 787.

richard89

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 21 Mar 2017

Total posts 34

Oh my god. So many arm chair CEOs. I've flown NZs 789 multi times, their 3-3-3 is totally fine. Everyone get over yourselves. If you want comfort pay for PE. If you can't afford it then fly via Japan. 

Luke49

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

Member since 17 Aug 2017

Total posts 28

It's all very interesting on people's thoughts. I guess QF and passengers will just have to wait and see. The PER-LHR may be very popular or passengers may avoid the 3-3-3 for 17 hours? Personally I will avoid 17 hours straight in Economy even Premium Economy.

But I think as some have said most passengers wouldn't know what aircraft they are on and only worry about price. Most people fly QF being QF frequent flyer or for their incredible safety record.
QF will eventually have different configurations on 787-9's replacing A330-200/300's to Asia and 787-8/9's domestically.
I also think if 3-3-3 isn't working they will configure new 787-9's to 2-4-2 for Ultra long range. Once they get more we may see rotations like LAX-MEL-PER-LHR change. 
QF have a lot of options with 787's.

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