Qantas to convert remaining A380 orders to A350-900ULR?

54 replies

PDR

Member since 04 Feb 2013

Total posts 1

What's the freight capacity on the 777-8X versus the A350ULR? My understanding was that the ULR loses a lot of its freight capacity, to pick up the increased fuel load in a (largely) unmodified airframe.


Might impact the economics a bit, if the -8X is designed to carry freight, whereas the ULR has limited capacity.

aniljak

Member since 15 Sep 2012

Total posts 91

If Qantas  got the Airbus A350, would expect to see 787s shifted to Jetstar and used to serve asian tourist routes. Doubt they would operate both types on long distane routes.

davidzuo

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 16 Nov 2016

Total posts 3

The 777-8 cannot fly as far as the A350ULR, another reason for Qantas to buy the latter.

A350ULR's 17,960 km range vs 777-8's range of 16,100 km. MEL-JFK 16,696 km; SYD-LHR 17,016 km. With a calculated load plus a slower speed, A350ULR can make both routes work for Qantas. For 777-8, 18 in/45.7 cm in 10 abreast (3-4-3) economy, whereas 18 in/46 cm in 9-abreast (3-3-3) economy for the A350ULR.

Steve987

Member since 23 Feb 2015

Total posts 259

OT - Aside from the benefit for Perth residents, does anyone know why they didn't make the 787 flights something like Mel-Rome-LHR? From a Melbourne departure perspective, that would have been much better.

Last editedby Steve987 at Aug 18, 2017, 08:28 PM.

mviy

Member since 05 May 2016

Total posts 287

QF wanted to be able to say they were doing the first non-stop flights between Australia and London. QF has a competitive advantage stopping in PER whereas stopping in a foreign country wouldn't give them that.


In any case stopping in PER is clearly a stop gap measure before bypassing PER flying direct from the East Coast all the way once QF has the aircraft to do it profitably. The question is whether the A350-900ULR is that aircraft or not.

StudiodeKadent

Member since 20 May 2015

Total posts 109

If Qantas  got the Airbus A350, would expect to see 787s shifted to Jetstar and used to serve asian tourist routes. Doubt they would operate both types on long distane routes.


787s are smaller than A350s so its perfectly possible QF will operate both types long distance. We could expect 787-9s to be ex-PER/BNE long-distance, with A350s doing larger longhaul routes ex. SYD and MEL (presuming QF go for A350s in the first place). 

reeves35

Member since 24 Aug 2011

Total posts 55

Freight is a limited issue when considering freight.  Heavy freight is rarely that time dependant.  ULR is very much a niche market so QF (and other airlines) are more interested in what sort of premium traffic they can attract rather than freight (or Y class for that matter). The freight capacity of the 778 comes with a significant weight penalty in OEW so the trip cost of a 778 will be significantly more than the A359ULR.

Jedinak K

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

Member since 06 Sep 2012

Total posts 99

One of the advantages of the A359ULR is its ability to reconfigure the fuel tanks. Should airlines like SQ and QF find the ultra-long range routes unprofitable, they are able to quickly reconfigure the tanks to less weight and range, providing more flexibility to serve shorter range markets. The B777-8 will carry a weight penalty, so if it is utilised on short-medium haul routes, airlines will need to pay for its heavy weight. 

Jazzop

Member since 02 Dec 2016

Total posts 104

No First Class?

I find that hard to believe honestly. The markets to LHR and JFK (the two ports which A350-ULRs would want to serve) have obvious First demand. Plus, given that lower capacity = lighter load = longer range, it makes sense to go for a four-class LOPA on the jet. First Class passengers will take direct over connecting flights any day. 

I'm skeptical about whether or not they'll get the ULRs, but I guess it depends on whether or not the 777-8 can be competitive in range terms. If the 777-8 can be competitive range-wise, QF would probably take the -8s instead (with -9s being the longterm replacement for 747s/A380s).


I'm with you on this one.  Qantas is showing a preference for less passengers paying higher yield and direct flights from SYD/MEL to JFK/LHR would appeal to those wanting extra comfort and willing to pay extra money.  I could see a small first class, perhaps 4 seats, then take those seats out of economy. 

Steve987

Member since 23 Feb 2015

Total posts 259

QF wanted to be able to say they were doing the first non-stop flights between Australia and London. QF has a competitive advantage stopping in PER whereas stopping in a foreign country wouldn't give them that.

In any case stopping in PER is clearly a stop gap measure before bypassing PER flying direct from the East Coast all the way once QF has the aircraft to do it profitably. The question is whether the A350-900ULR is that aircraft or not.

Thanks - yeah I get the marketing aspect. Aside from that though I just don't see it. Surely analysis could have been done re which euro countries (aside from U.K.) we get most visitors from / send visitors too and do direct flights from Melbourne to that country would be better than the domestic leg. 

Using Rome as the example, but maybe Athens makes sense from Melbourne, Qantas would own the route compared to all others where a stop is required along the way.

Jazzop

Member since 02 Dec 2016

Total posts 104

Just throwing this out there..... wouldn't it be interesting if VA got the jump on QF and did this instead.  And take the opportunity to replace the 330s and 777s at the same time. I know they have their money issues right now, but think about it, it would be a great move and allow VA to replace the 330s and 777s with a single type and reduce their costs.

oruspicarous

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 18 Jun 2015

Total posts 30

OT - Aside from the benefit for Perth residents, does anyone know why they didn't make the 787 flights something like Mel-Rome-LHR? From a Melbourne departure perspective, that would have been much better.
Last edited by Steve987 at Aug 18, 2017, 08.28 PM.

It's a nice idea, but as mentioned by Mviy, there's more prestige in doing a non-stop Australia to London flight. Add to the fact that not everyone will be going to Melbourne from London, and this option would require at least two stops if they wanted to go to Adelaide, Hobart, etc. Perth has the widebodies too for flights to the East Coast whereas MEL has more frequency.

Steve987

Member since 23 Feb 2015

Total posts 259

OT - Aside from the benefit for Perth residents, does anyone know why they didn't make the 787 flights something like Mel-Rome-LHR? From a Melbourne departure perspective, that would have been much better.
Last edited by Steve987 at Aug 18, 2017, 08.28 PM.

It's a nice idea, but as mentioned by Mviy, there's more prestige in doing a non-stop Australia to London flight. Add to the fact that not everyone will be going to Melbourne from London, and this option would require at least two stops if they wanted to go to Adelaide, Hobart, etc. Perth has the widebodies too for flights to the East Coast whereas MEL has more frequency.

Good points!

hakkinen5

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 20 Aug 2014

Total posts 136

QF wanted to be able to say they were doing the first non-stop flights between Australia and London. QF has a competitive advantage stopping in PER whereas stopping in a foreign country wouldn't give them that.

In any case stopping in PER is clearly a stop gap measure before bypassing PER flying direct from the East Coast all the way once QF has the aircraft to do it profitably. The question is whether the A350-900ULR is that aircraft or not.

Thanks - yeah I get the marketing aspect. Aside from that though I just don't see it. Surely analysis could have been done re which euro countries (aside from U.K.) we get most visitors from / send visitors too and do direct flights from Melbourne to that country would be better than the domestic leg. 

Using Rome as the example, but maybe Athens makes sense from Melbourne, Qantas would own the route compared to all others where a stop is required along the way.

Athens would be almost entirely a VFR/Leisure market. There would be no demand for the high yielding seats.

Chris2304

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 10 Apr 2013

Total posts 167

This isn't as locked-in as my other insider tips but here is what's being discussed in the top circles of Qantas HQ. Qantas has an order for 20 A380s but took only 12 of them. The remaining 8 are still on the books although Qantas has said many times it won't take them.
So right now Qantas is in discussions with Airbus on converting those 8 A380 orders into orders for the A350-900ULR, which is the same ultra-long range A350 which SQ will use for non-stops to LAX and JFK. It's looking good because the only alternative is the Boeing 777-8X which is not going to fly until early 2020s but the A350ULRs can be delivered from 2019, and they're just a standard and proven A350 with extra rage built in.
This would let Qantas start direct flights from Sydney and Melbourne to New York and major European cities, not sure about London which would of course be the prize. The config would probably be similar to the Boeing 787-9 with no first class, just business, premium economy and economy.

They also convert the 4 A380 options to A350ULR to a total of 12. 

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