Why the jumbo jets failed

Ahh, the 747, the beautiful queen of the sky, ahh, the A380, the nicer more uglier version of the 747, why did they fail? For over 40 years the 747 rules aviation, many airlines enjoyed using the 747 for their more “High Demand” routes, like Pan Am going from Miami to London or New York To London, the 747 offered allot of space to stuff allot of passengers on these high demand routes, and since they can carry allot of fuel, they can fly farther. The A380 was the response of Airbus to Boeing’s domination in the jumbo jet category, with the A380 airbus promised more fuel efficiency than the 747, and it can also carry more passangers than the 747, better right? Yes and no? Airbus has not received a new order for one in years, for one reason. When a plane is bigger, it is heavier, which means it needs to fly lower, which means it is less efficient, in a bigger jet, there is more airport fee’s, jetways landings fees etc, with more passengers, you need more food catering, more IFE, more flight attendants, more pilots, basically more of everything, same applies to the 747, The A380 was a complete failure, it is only alive thanks to big operators such as emirates that are investing into it allot, the only reason the 747 is alive because it is very good at delivering cargo, Twin Jets are the future of aviation, yes, those small jets, are the future of aviation. Twin jets such as the 787 that uses carbon composites and are very efficient fuel burners, and the upcoming 737 max, 777X, A320 Neo, and A350, those are examples of airplanes that are good at what they are meant to do, make profit for their airlines, twin jets need less maintenance than tri or quad jets, they are smaller and need less of everything, they can fly low and high demand routes respectively and still generate allot of profit towards there airlines $$$, so when it comes to generating $$$, the jumbo jets failed, and the new twin jets are dominating the sky’s, congrats, you learned something new or read something you already knew. :)


I wouldn’t say they failed, they just not fitting into what airlines need due to the amount of passengers they carry, it’s unethical to operate them.

They have played a big role in history and the development, and most are still used for cargo. (Excluding the A380).

Some airlines can operate these while making a profit on high demand routes.

The 747’s are becoming old now, and not to the standards of modern day jets, so all in all, it didn’t fail, nor did the A380…

Well written topic by the way! 😂


As you can see this is real world aviation topic, and this is talking about stuff about aviation in the real world, so I think this is an appropriate topic.

Only partially correct.
While it is true that the A380 failed, you didn’t mention the most vibrant reason for it. There is basically no route on earth that requires A380 service. Airlines simply can’t fill their A380s, so ot’s hard to cover the costs of operating the aircraft. Also, routes that A380s are used on, very probably have dozens of other flight options for passengers.
Take LHR-JFK for instance.

The reason why new aircraft like the A321LR, A350, A320neo, B787, B737MAX are going to be very successfull is because they can operate long distance, low-ultra low demand routes while still making profit.
This ensures a much higher passenger comfort, because obviously, everybody would take a direct plane from, let’s say Tampa to Berlin. Nobody will take the 2 stopover option via ORD and FRA.
It’s simply more comfortable for the passenger.
This ensures that the airline flies with mostly filled planes and less fuel costs, takeoff and landing fees, less turnaround time because of less passengers and so on and so forth.


Excuse me! 😱 I AM OFFENDED,just no…



It may be a duplicate, but I feel this topic goes more in detail then that one.

A tip in the future, maybe comment on that topic, instead of making a whole new one. 😉


I can’t say it’s a failure as 747 was booming from 1970s-Early 2000s. 747 was made in order to meet demand for the booming air travelling. So your definition of “Failure” isn’t the correct phrase to describe it

Unfortunately, A380 came at the wrong era. These days, Airlines prefer aircrafts with less capacity and more fuel efficient. Airlines prefer to make more Frequencies than adding Capacities nowadays as it’s more flexible for passengers. Plus the arrival of LCCs making airlines harder to fill their planes with passengers. That explains why Airlines are having problem in filling this Jumbo Jet


Did you just call the A380 ugly?? Hmmmm, the 747 is the queen of the skies, the A380 is the king! You make me very angry… jk

Thanks for this! I learnt more than I can learn at school in a whole day in about 1 minute of reading. ;)

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It’s an interesting topic in real world aviation which is also the perfect place to start a discussion about the future of jumbos

Even if there’s already another well established topic with the opinions and points of hundreds of other members?

Thanks for moderating :) , the moderators will choose which topic to close.


The reason the 747 but not the a380 succeded in freight. When an airplane is filled with passengers, the majority of the volume is not filled.Headroom, aisles, even the the gap between your elbow and seat. With cargo, 99% percent of the volume isfilled, as cargo doesn’t have feelings and every lost 1cm3 is money gone. If you fill an a380 with almost any product, it will be above MTOW, meaning lots of space, therefore money, is being wasted where a 747 could carry slightly less more efficientl. The A380-F would be able to carry 60% more volume than the 747, but only 28% more weight.

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1,530 Boeing 747’s have been built… hardly a failure

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I mean in the passenger department, the profit department for airline, the fuel efficiency department, the 747 is a success for CARGO, as for the A380, R.I.P

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Really interesting topic, keep these up!

Actually, 747 explained why Pan Am can reached their Gold era. Same story with Singapore Airlines, Cathay Pacific, and many major carriers in the world back on the 70s

747 is a moneycow for airlines in the past

The A380 is not a complete failure, they made their money back so the project broke even so take your statement and retract it… Thanks, in this day and age with airports running at full capacity or near enough the A380 is the only solution, you assume Airlines aren’t making a profit but they still have them.

Look at this:


The jumbo jets didn’t fail, aviation is evolving and the wide body body twins just took over because of innovative engineering. The cost of fuel is the biggest contributor to the design and construction of lighter less expensive aircraft that can carry a large amount of people while burning considerably less fuel. The second contributor is passenger amenities including wifi and power outlets for multiple devices per seat. My last point is that cargo transport is changing as well since products of all shapes and sizes are taking on tighter footprints and utilizing light weight structural components to achieve the same durability and efficiency. This allows more products to be transported via trains and trucks at a much cheaper price.

Compare this to the evolution of the auto industry which was faced with the same challenges of constructing products that are lighter, yet safer and are able to optimize fuel while providing the end user with a more powerful, comfortable and technologically advanced piece of equipment. An old V8 Cadillac that drove like a boat on the river and stopped like a polar bear on ice skates was replaced by a lighter, faster, safer and up to 200% more fuel efficient (8 miles per gallon compared to 24 mile per gallon) fleet of vehicles that we see on the road today.

Because they didn’t.