787 vs A380, why people still love the double decker

The Airbus A380-800, the world’s largest passenger jet, and an engineering marvel. Just 10 years ago the giant of the skies was the hottest somewhat “must have aircraft” for airlines, yet only just over a decade old, the A380 is already being sold for scrap metal. With only Emirates putting in orders recently for the aircraft looks like it’s getting massively overran with smaller, more efficient, long-haul jets like the A350 and the B787. But as much as people love these new jets why do people still show so much love towards the older and bigger A380?

Let’s take the 787 for example, it has over 1,300 orders from airlines across the world. It boasts features like extremally good fuel efficiency, advanced LED lighting, more humid air and windows that dim at the touch of a button as well as it’s size and flexibility to land at smaller airports. That last point is a massive eye opener for airlines. Point to point flying is starting to become a new trend, instead of going on a smaller plane to a hub and then getting on a massive plane to your destination. But airlines couldn’t really do this before without risking the fact that the massive aircraft could not be filled to a safisfactonariy level or before even considering the route that the aircraft couldn’t accommodate the size of the aircraft, it’s about profitability and hub flying was the trend until around now. Airlines can now fly these smaller 787’s into smaller airports with fewer seats to fill on a more fuel-efficient aircraft that would MAKE MONEY as well passengers not complaining because they are on a new fancy aircraft as well as not having to stop over at a bigger, more crowded airport (like LAX). This is how airlines see it, but not everyone’s happy.

Passengers LOVE the A380, it’s size really says “long haul” to a lot of people. The A380 is just built for it with features like noise reduction from the engines, large side bins on the upper deck for people’s belongings, a lot of space to move around in, space for onboard lounges and onboard first class suites, a 15,200km range and of course two decks for up to 4 classes of travel. Plus a lot of people prefer flying on big planes on long routes because you know, people have this extra sense of “security” when flying on big planes on big routes. For example, the A330-200 is operated by both Qantas and Virgin Australia on the transcontinental Sydney-Perth route. The flight is a 5hr hop that feels like it is good and profitable for the two airlines that do it. The aircraft is large but not too large and feels appreciate for the 5hr jaunt but say if I were to do a connecting QF9 flight to London on the only slightly larger 787-9, sure the aircraft is safe and extremely capable of doing it but would I sit in an aircraft bearly larger then the A330-200 I just travelled across in for 3 times as long? Yes, but why would I when there is an A380 doing the exact same route in a larger more spacious aircraft from Sydney. Again a lot of people would disagree but a larger aircraft always sounds better to me. I should mention that the 787-9 which Qantas operates on the route have less range than the larger A380. However, there is one airline ignoring the trend. Emirates ordered 36 of the double deckers back in January to grow their fleet and become most arguably the “best airline in the world” in terms of passenger comfort, fleet size, and destinations. But most others seem to be ignoring Emirates and going the way of the more fuel efficient and smaller jets. I personally hate to see the demise of the larger means better age with the A380 and 747 but it’s about money and the airlines obviously see a lot more cash in operating the smaller aircraft.

first%20melb
Photographers at Melbourne Airport enjoy the view of the first Qantas A380 taking off on it’s inaugural commercial flight on the 20th of October 2008 photo credit

  • A380
  • 787

0 voters

5 Likes

Well passangers love the A380 but the airlines love the 787 more… Due to fuel efficiency…

The A380 is an absolute icon - nothing can match it.
Sad to think that airlines are getting rid of them and moving across to smaller, more efficient jets.
Looks like an end to an era.
Compared to the 747, the A380s life was very short-lived. I hope to fly on it again some time soon before they are completely out of our skies.

Lukily airlines like Qantas and Emirates won’t be getting rid of it any time soon I don’t think. Considering that Qantas just put their new livery on it…
image

Sourced from australianaviation.com

Nice post - was an interesting read :)

5 Likes

Wendover productions right on point.
Watch the whole thing. It’s good!

Which do I like?

The 787!

Why?

It looks sooooo elegant, has very advanced technology, and comfy seats!

1 Like

I say the A380 because as a passenger NOTHING besides a private jet rivals the space and comfort in the seat.

1 Like

It’s big, cuddly and different. I love, you love it, we love it.

A-380 looks like a bus with wings, 787 is an angelic engineering marvel! And the fuel efficiency per passenger is far less than that of the A-380. Oh and did I mention Wong flex? 👍

2 Likes

My dad just got back from Australia he traveled with Etihad he said the a380 business class seats where not as comfortable as the 787s for some reason but they are the same

Well I mean, it is an Airbus A380.

3 Likes

The A380 will always be less in numbers than the 787, there is simply more demand for smaller planes. However, the A380 is an absolute joy to fly, nothing compares to it. The windows are very large and unique, and although I have never flown the 787, from what I’ve heard, it is actually quieter than the 787. It is so smooth, the only aircraft that matches up to it in terms of ceiling height is the A350, and it is maybe not as effiecent as the A350 and 787, but it is still quite efficient, and certainly has a market. Makes me sad to see that it may not be around for much longer

This past springs semester, I wrote a 15 page research paper about the “big plane vs little plane” argument. My conclusion? The A380 was a failure and was made because it was a cool thing to do. The market is changing towards long and skinny routes. It was after it’s time.

I don’t think the A380 will be leaving the skies that soon. I saw this the other day.

https://www.airbus.com/newsroom/press-releases/en/2017/06/airbus-presents-the-a380plus.html

Well, yes. Considering that it has been ordered by multiple airlines on large levels, it did bring in some profitability. However, the only reason it’s alive today is because Emirates is still ordering it (because they’re rich and powerful and can afford to pay for a ridiculous amount of fuel). It’s not selling very well to other airlines though. Before the Emirates order in January, the A380 went years without receiving an order. Meanwhile, our state of the art 787,777, A350, etc. are crushing the competition because, relative to the A380, they’re cheap, they can go long distances from smaller airports, and they’re fuel efficient. Airlines will always go with the most profitable option, and that’s why no one really wants the A380 anymore.

The thing is, one airline purchasing an aircraft doesn’t make it a success. If it’s widely known and operated by a galore of airlines, then its successful.

I keep seeing the same thing pop up. If you can fill the A380 then it’s far more profitable to an airline than a B787. In fact no airline substitutes would use them to replace such an aircraft so if anything this discussion is just odd and meaningless because the only ones that can compare are the A350 and B777. The B787 is no different to any other plane really, people who aren’t AV geeks are the true test here and that’s why the A380 always wins, it’s best for passenger comfort due to the space on board and it’s massive noise reduction. It’s a brilliant plane and airlines already operating it want it try and get more where possible. It gives them the opportunity to showcase their best products and more by having bars and showers on board. The B787 is a normal plane that has silly windows which aren’t actually practical and it has recent advancements like veery other plane will have from now onwards. I don’t know why the B787 is so over rated…

3 Likes

This airport will be replacing Dubai Intl. Emirates will begin moving there in the next few years. It makes a Emirates/Etihad merger pretty convinient (Al Maktoum is in between Dubai and Abu Dhabi).

To add on to @Louis’s post:
The reason the 787 is more profitable is materials. The whalebus was made of Glass Laminate Aluminum Reinforced Epoxy (GLARE) whereas the 787s were made of Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymer (CFRP).
CFRP is MUCH lighter than GLARE, so the 787 is more fuel-efficient and more profitable.

GLARE and CFRP stuff found on wikipedia

2 Likes

To be honest, I was, and am still a fan of the a380. I was fascinated by its ability to fly with such a “big load” The a380 was originally designed to carry pax between large hubs, while the 787 was designed for direct routes, from a smaller destination to another small destination, or a large destination to a smaller destination. Anyway, the results are endless with the 787, and that’s why I love the 787.


Pax Comfort
I haven’t flown on the a380 before, but I have on the 787 on all classes (Air Canada Economy, Premium Economy, and Business Class) due to my frequent travels between KLAX and CYYZ.

Now, I have to say, Economy is CRAMPED. I was in the aisle and still felt like I had no room. The flight attendants were very kind and offered us drinks the whole flight.
Moving on the the premium economy, it was definitely more spacious. Recline is amazing, and I was served a pretty nice dinner, on actual plates, not paper plates and stuff like that.
Business class is amazing, with lie flat seats, even for just a small(er) 787. This is amazing as the flight was only 5 hours, and the plane was all full.

1 Like

That’s true, but the routes you can put the a380 on are limited, pretty much only on high demand routes, or you’ll end up losing profit. Operating and maintenance costs are higher as well. The space does allow the company to use different configurations. Now there is something more special with the 787 in my opinion You can pretty much operate it between any large to medium sized airport…

heres a video that I found by an amazing informational youtuber -

The B787 isn’t the only plane which can do this. The A330 and B777 have been doing this for years. The B757 is another example which for the last 30+ years has been used in short and long haul routes also. Again the B787 is just a new plane which people are getting amazed at when it’s nit that different from the others, fuel savings yes but that’s just new engines for you.