I’m a 380 fan since I sampled one for the first time last year (BA to Jo’burg) and was delighted when one was put on our route from Doha to Colombo later in the year. My wife, who’s not interested in aircraft at all, was delighted to hear that Qatar Airways had replaced the 777 on our Colombo flight with the 380, as well.
It really is noticeably quieter and smoother – at least on the upper deck in J. I can’t speak for economy.
It strikes me there’s a touch of the old 707 vs. VC10 argument here. The VC10 was simply a nicer aircraft to fly in (faster, as well, but that’s not really an issue here) and while the 707 had a lower cost per seat, BOAC found that VC10s consistently carried a higher load which negated the 707’s notional advantage.
I’m not surprised the US hasn’t bought it – most of their operations are domestic and not really long-haul. This is where the A380 is starting to make a difference and, as others have said, should continue to make inroads.
Me, I really will try and seek long-haul flights that use it. It’s that much of a game-changer. I’m sure that as time goes by, other passenegers who get the chance to fly in it will feel the same way.