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Author Topic: One Jumbo or multiple regionals?  (Read 156 times)

Offline Mike Rose

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One Jumbo or multiple regionals?
« on: September 04, 2022, 10:37:12 PM »
Despite playing for well over 10 years it's always made me wonder, when looking at a route of less than 200nm, daily demand of (in excess of) 2500 pax and little to no competition to speak of, is it cheaper to run 4/5 744D flights a day or 15 (or so) 737/A320 size aircraft? The 747-400D is of course an expensive beast to run both in terms of fuel burn and maintenance costs, but it does seem to do a better job (and save potentially many slots a day) of shifting pax back and forth on short, domestic high demand routes.

If competition was greater, demand was lower or perhaps the routes a tad longer than 200nm, I appreciate the 747 would be on the back foot in terms of it's cost to run and ability to compete with smaller and more frugal aircraft.

My question is taking all costs into account (lease costs (assuming the smaller a/c would be brand new, leased from manufacturer), slots, staffing, fuel, airport handling fees for different sized a/c , and the potential flights per day achievable taking turnaround time into account as well, is it cheaper/more profitable to run fewer Jumbos, or more A320/737 sized aircraft in their place?

Thanks in advance,

Offline knobbygb

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Re: One Jumbo or multiple regionals?
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2022, 06:38:52 AM »
I think you'd have to do the experiment to find out. The problem is, in a real game world, being able to doing that for long enough with no other factors changing.

My guess would be though, that the long turn around times and specifically the ratio of turnaround time to route-time would be the killer for the 747.  What you need is the largest aircraft with the shortest turn. I'd suspect that the A300 would be one of the best aircraft for that route as they turn quite quickly and are usually available dirt cheap used. It's actually what they were originally designed for which shows how well this game mirrors reality.  The problem then is working out how it affects the rest of your fleet in terms of numbers of different fleets and the possible impact of being 'forced' to use a less suitable aircraft on other routes.  i.e. it isn't that simple!

The 757-300 or 767-400 would also be very good if you are using either of those fleet groups.

If you plan to use 777/A330/A350/787 now or in the future then those would all probably work better than a 747.  Consider that, assuming you will use high-density seating on such a route, the 777 has the same capacity as most 747 (I know the D is a bit higher but I can't see any in my game world to check).

Narrowbodys give you more flexibility in the future.  You might have no competition now but is that going to change next year or even next week?

Also are you worried about your stats - i.e. getting a better game-score rather than making more money that isn't real anyway and you get no recognition for.  Having more daily flights and a larger fleet gives you a higher score, even if you make a bit less profit.

Lots of things to consider.

Offline Mike Rose

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Re: One Jumbo or multiple regionals?
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2022, 08:24:50 PM »
Funny you should say that, I have a large number of dirt cheap A300s for that exact reason. They have never failed me and as such are returning impeccable profits (in the region of 1.7m weekly, the 747s are earning slightly more still).

As you suggest this plan only really works in the very short term, increased competition would likely change my stance, and increasing fuel costs in the near future will force my hand into buying smaller aircraft (I have A32X series aircraft on order although these are of course taking upwards of a year to be delivered). I would imagine my end game is a fleet of all the 787 variants (including the -3  if possible) to serve short, medium and long haul.

The score is certainly an interesting point and one which I failed to consider. It has also come to mind that if a 747D goes out on C check, it certainly isn't worth bringing another in to cover routes, however if all of these routes were served by more numerous smaller aircraft the effect of a 'missing' aircraft from the cycle is far less prominent.

Thanks for the reply!


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