when does the monster start service? Will VIR be the first major to fly these? a million questions,yes!

Entry into serivce is scheduled for late this year or early next year. Singapore Airlines will be the first to fly, but the rumors say it will not be on a route to the US (likely SIN-LHR).

The idea of the 380 isn’t a bad one but it was designed primarily for Far East Operations.
I personally don’t think that it will do that well here in the US. I see it becoming a hit as a freighter here in the US, similar to the MD-11.

I don’t think it was designed for operations in or to the Far East. It was designed for high traffic routes, especially routes where at least one of the airports has slot restrictions such as LHR and NRT. I do see it coming to the USA. In fact, according to the January/February 2006 issue of Airliners, Emirates’ first route for the A380 will be to JFK.

Has British Airways ordered the aircraft? The Airbus web site sucks when it comes to finding out who ordered the A380. In any case, I could see British replacing it’s current 7-8 B747/B777 flights a day between NYC and LHR with 2 or 3 A380 flights.

I don’t see it being used for domestic passenger services in the USA mainly because not domestic airline has ordered the passenger version. Although UPS and FedEX have both ordered the cargo version, I don’t see them using it for domestic cargp services except possibly at Christmas time to handle the increased cargo at that time of the year. They may also use it domestically in case of a national emergency.

The A380 works for package carriers (FedEx, UPS, etc), but the cargo density is a bit low for general cargo.

BA has not ordered the A380; they’re expected to order A388 or B748 later this year.
I doubt BA will reduce frequency to NYC; I think they attract a lot of business by offering so many flights a day.

I doubt BA will reduce frequency to NYC; I think they attract a lot of business by offering so many flights a day.

They may have to if JFK and/or doesn’t increase runway capacity.

The Engine Alliance (GE/Pratt & Whitney) web site has a breakdown of the A380 orders with the engines each airline has selected.: enginealliance.com/aboutmrkt.html

Hello all,

I touched on the A380 being used for Far East operations earlier. After looking at the stats on the weblink provided, I'm even more convinced. 
Let's look at the logic for a minute. It's widely known that Lufthansa, Virgin Atlantic, Qantas, Singapore and a score of other carriers fly to the Far East. The use of the -380 for these routes seems to be the logical choice. It will be widely used on flights to Bangkok, Tokyo, Hong Kong and many other cities in the region. 
Using the -380 in the US as a domestic carrier is suicidal for the airlines based here. Simply put, there is no way to justify the use of such a monster for those routes. Years ago, United and other airlines used to use 747's for domestics but they stopped doing it for 2 reasons; first, it was found that the planes were not always filled to capacity, meaning they could use a smaller plane for the route. Secondly, with the fuel costs as high as they are it would cost a fortune to use a plane that size for domestics.
  Bringing the A-380 to the US for international routes would not be so bad if the airports didn't have to retool their terminals for 2 levels of jetways to load and unload passengers. The other factor is the taxiways. While the runways are wide enough to handle a plane like that, will the taxiways have enough width to SAFELY accomodate it? In most cases the answer is no. 
  British Airways will not retire the 777 in favor of the 380. the fact stands that the 777 is one of the most advanced aircraft ever built. Along with having an outstanding safety record, it fills a niche right between the 747 and the 767. It has the range and capacity to fly a very long distance and keep it's passengers comfortable.
  The A-380 is a revolutionary plane with no doubt, but my opinion is that it is a plane whose design is 20 years too late. I see very little chance of it outselling the 747 in the long run. The 747-800 will insure the 747 stays on top. 
I see Airbus as a decent aircraft desginer and manufacturer but they seem to be trying to keep up with Boeing and their ideas.  Without offending anyone, I see Airbus as the outcast in a street football game, being the last one picked to a team. The competiton between Boeing and Airbus is interesting and I see it easily becoming as fierce as the Boeing and Douglas feud in the 1960's and  1970's.

I think your remarks about Airbus are pretty cogent, UAL012, except that they are pretty much in a 50-50 market share battle with Boeing.

I suspect they will not make their money back on the A380. Nor will they have to.

I find it ironic that the technology in the B777, an aircraft that’s been in service for at least 10 years, is more advanced than that going into the A380, which hasn’t even had its first delivery yet. Compare the A380, with its traditional mostly aluminum construction, bleed-air powered hydraulically operated control surfaces, etc, to the B787’s all-composite body, shaft-driven electrically powered control surfaces, big windows, higher cabin pressure and humidity, etc, puts Boeing perhaps 10-15 years ahead of Airbus technologically.

Airbus FUD about the 787 that common ramp rash incidents will take it out of service for long periods of time is probably untrue and has not stopped the airlines from placing far more orders for the much-more-recently tendered 787 compared to the 380, although to be fair the 787 is less expensive. More to the point I think Boeing’s thinking about how the market is going to go, that there will be lots of point-to-point service with the 787 like Glasgow - Houston, routes that bypass congested hubs and would not support a 380-class aircraft have been closer to the airlines’ thinking than Airbus.

As long as there is healthy and fair competition, we all win. Without Airbus, Boeing wouldn’t try as hard and would be a lot more expensive.

Just because US carriers haven’t ordered it, doesn’t mean they won’t. It is not as if US carriers have lots of excess cash laying around anyway. On the other hand, look how many have 747’s now. Doesn’t seem as though US carriers want that much capacity.

As for the cargo versions, even if they fly them internationally, I hope to see them at EWR, since there is a large FX presence there already. But I wouldn’t be surprised if they were flown domestically; UPS at least already flies a lot of 747 domestic flights.

Wow, someone mentions A380 and everyone jumps on it. :laughing: 8) :open_mouth:

FedEx and UPS have both been the joint launch customer for the A380 freighter. With regard to that, FedEx has said that they have no intentions of retiring the MD-11 in favor of that plane. Instead it will simply help in the long haul flights. Given the 380’s range I think it will allow the freight haulers to do a few additional long range flights from a hub in the US. (Memphis especially)
US based airlines have largely said that they have no immediate plans on purchasing the 380 simply because it is WAY too big and they are not remotely interested in spending a fortune to rebuild, redesign, or build terminals to accomodate this plane.
Being a Colorado resident and an active member in both the real and virtual aviation community, I have had an opportuinty to speak with a few designers and engineers at Denver International Airport (DIA) about this plane. When we came to the subject of modifying a terminal or building a new one, I had one engineer tell me they would take out an ENTIRE De-icing pad for a new building. While I’m no rocket scientist, I do know that the idea of doing something like that would cause delays during the winter months like nobody’s seen in a long time.
Having somewhat of a business sense, I have to think that Airbus would have more US Airlines interested in a plane like the 380 if they didn’t build something so extreme that would cost millions to handle. If you want another great example of this, let’s look at the Russian-built Antonov An-225.
The An-225 is currently the largest aircraft in the world. Put alongside the 747, this thing dwarfs it. In the US, only a select few airports can handle this beast because of it’s size and weight. The runways are fine, but the -225 is so heavy that it has actually sank into the pavement on a taxiway. While the Airbus A-380 is no An-225, the idea is still the same. It will be too heavy and too wide for most airports to handle unless major reinforcement work is put into motion.
That reason alone is my biggest justification behind why the A-380 will not do well here in the US, regardless of who owns them. Their destinations from oversea will be limited and ultimately most airlines will be forced to go back to the tried and true B747.
Again as I stated in a previous post, I see this plane being a major success in Europe and Asia. Lufthansa in particular will benefit greatly from the A-380 on a flight from say Frankfurt to Bangkok. That is about a 12 hour flight and they would easily be able to handle 200 more passengers with a properly configured 380.
These are the way I see things happening. Of course, only time will tell.