British Airways wetlease to DAT – should I be worried?

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Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 51 total)

  • AlanOrton1
    Participant

    Age is a red herring in terms of there being numerous examples of carriers, including AA, BA, LH, AF etc etc flying planes of circa 25 years old. Thus, imho, this is one consideration the OP may not feel the need to be too concerned about.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    cwoodward
    Participant

    Andrew I am pleased to answer your question(s) , I have several good friends who are in the industry, two are retired from senior positions at HEACO, several active pilots are close friends, I used to have a licence also I was for a considerable time involved in one way or another with the industry. Also of course the internet offers a wealth relevant information.

    The very detailed history of this aircraft is available on-line to those who know where and care to look – I don’t. That it has had a hard life, a hard tail strike and is past its desirable use-by date is undeniable.

    Is not ‘trying’ more than a little condescending Andrew ?

    I have not mentioned or suggested that BA is negligent nor do I believe that it is as such though mismanaged is I believe open to some debate.
    Had BA leased an older A321 aircraft from the likes of Lufthansa Cathay Qantas or JAL I would probably not have posted however they leased an old and warn aircraft from a cheap leasing company and I believe that they should have done better by their travelling public.

    It is unlike you to post such “We have a post from someone who has travelled on said aircraft in the forum, and it seems no major issues”….. well of course not and that is not as I am sure you are aware not my point – however had the airframe disintegrated this thread would be more redundant than it perhaps now is!


    cwoodward
    Participant

    I disagree with you on this Alan as it appears that you seem not to have taken into account the history of this particular aircraft, its lessor or its specific history.


    AndrewinHK
    Participant

    Cwoodward, I certainly didn’t intend to come across as condescending. Returning to the question of the OP, the point I was trying to make was DAT/BA aren’t outliers in operating a 321 of this age, I wouldn’t have any issues flying on such an aircraft.


    sparkyflier
    Participant

    Age is no issue for me and indeed agree with RF2 about older planes (Flew on AA MD-80 and 757 choosing schedules with those planes on years ago) and very frequently they are MORE comfortable than modern ones!

    A few months ago I flew an Aegean A320 and when the bus came towards the plane I saw it had the previous livery and on boarding the seat was super comfortable and super spacious too. Way more legroom than the 29-31 inch seat pitch modern day average.

    767s are way more comfortable than their so called replacement (at least in Y), the 787.

    cwoodward you do seem to have an obsession with aircraft age when has has been discussed many major airlines with excellent safety records have multiple older aircraft. I think in your book even an aircraft over 15 is an old banger.

    And when it comes to “new” aircraft lets face it Boeing does not have a great record in turning out new aircraft since the 787 started ( Max etc)

    Back to the question by supercris – BA do this regularly and indeed it is due to a shortage this year of aircraft and crew. In addition there are delays to long haul aircraft coming into the fleet – 787 and 779 etc, which means some short haul aircraft have to slot sit on shorter flights.

    Also I guess ideally BA would prefer a 787 or 777 to go to Cairo for example but use A321 instead as the wide bodies are needed elsewhere.

    Having said that, no idea why BA still have A320/19 stored at Madrid – including A319 G-EUPJ which has the special BEA livery to celebrate being “100 years old”.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    cwoodward
    Participant

    Andrew
    I have no issue with the aircraft type and my point was only that BA could/should have done better by their customers.

    Nor do I believe that my view ‘differs significantly’ from other observations regarding the operation older aircraft by legacy airlines. Particularly those with a largely unknown service history that according to their manufacturers recommendations are past their optimum service life.


    cwoodward
    Participant

    sparkyflier
    I certainly have no ‘obsession’ with aircraft age and how you come to that conclusion rather mystifies me as over 20 odd years of posting and many thread starters I have seldom posted re the age or condition of older leased aircraft.

    Your point however re BA ‘stored’ aircraft is as usual a good one.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    sparkyflier
    Participant

    What aircraft would I prefer, a Boeing 737 Max 8/9/10 fresh out the factory or a sturdy and well-maintained A320 in its 20s?

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    DerekVH
    Participant

    I flew to Amsterdam last week in an A321 which was brand new – my return was on an A319 which was 24 years old but never gave the age of the aircraft a second thought. But I also wonder why BA are leasing aircraft when they still have some in storage – could this be an issue related to shortage of crew, not aircraft?

    3 users thanked author for this post.

    cwoodward
    Participant

    “and well-maintained A320 in its 20s is my preference depending on its providence
    ‘well maintained’ is a very relevant point but not the only one by far – the aircrafts service history and usage are also vitally important.

    If you post is a question – my point was never re the aircraft type.


    sparkyflier
    Participant

    cwoodward re age I have noticed you often bring fleet age up when being critical about an airline and especially recall you discussing the A330 fleet at Qantas and taking issue with how old they were. There were many exchanges on the topic and you got quite upset when posters challenged you on how old you said the fleet was but above all I think you thought they were old bangers.

    As it happens I would be delighted to fly a QF A330 in J!

    DerekVH – indeed – short of planes and crew. I believe recruitment and retention has become better, hence the return of BKK and KUL, but going into the Summer months even pre-Brexit and Covid think they always needed support from wet-lease options etc.


    cwoodward
    Participant

    @sp
    It can be rather easy to take an isolated post out of context – my reference to QF old A330s as I recall was re the AU -HKG route where they go directly up against Cathays A350s and B777s. Both being OW airlines the comparison was (and is) I believe relevant.
    Which aircraft would you rather fly on the route – if the A330 you would be in the minority- but each to their own.

    The last thing that I want to do is is trawl through others old posts sans context to find the inconsistencies that we all sometimes appear to make when posting on the fly. Ok to make a point I suppose sparky but seems to me just a little unfair


    Rferguson2
    Participant

    I am no expert in mechanics but I know a major reason airlines tend to get rid of older aircraft (especially in Europe) is due to the high level of regulatory demands in regards to the maintenance of these aircraft. After x cycles they have a maintenance check then after y cycles it is a bigger one and they become more and more intricate to the point that mechanics and engineers are almost pulling the aircraft apart and putting it back together again. Which is why from a safety POV I would have absolutely no qualms with flying on an older aircraft versus a newer one from a european carrier (UK included here as the CAA is still aligned with EASA post brexit). And no aircraft would be able to fly for a european airline if it was poorly maintained. It simply wouldn’t be licensed to by the regulators.

    Ironically, over the pond Boeing has (well now post MAX ‘HAD’ thank goodness) almost complete regulatory oversight of its own work and maintenance procedures which is crazy. The FAA did not physically carry out any inspections on boeing aircraft instead just accepting what boeing submitted and rubber stamping it.


    @CWoodward
    I recall the Qantas post re the A330’s and I think the gist of it was that Qantas had left it too late to submit an order to replace the A330’s which I completely agree with. The A330’s are a bit long in the tooth although if I had to travel in economy they would be my ‘go to’ purely down to the 2 x 4 x 2 configuration. I am glad to see CX are generally flying their A350’s and 777’s to OZ now, I can recall pre covid their A330’s (which were also looking a bit shabby!) being the workhorse on most of the HKG – OZ routes.

    I guess there are many many variables that go into what aircraft and airline operates and how long they keep them in their fleet. Is it better to outright own an older aircraft or to lease a newer more efficient aircraft (at a price!)? What are competitors offering on the route? When did the aircraft last have their cabins updated? What are our maintenance facilities like and do we have the resources to undertake our own heavy maintenance? Fleet commonality.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    superchris
    Participant

    Ive been quiet on this and enjoying the comments and am thankful for everyones interest. I ddnt enjoy reading about the hard tail strike and I wont lie the general safety situation of such an old aircraft doesnt fill me with excitement. That said these aircraft fly above our heads everyday an we have to trust the authorities to have the correct checks and balances to ensure everyones safety.

    I will report back on the general service levels and comfort of the aircraft.

    The trip is a special one for Mrs SuperChris to a certain song contest accross the Oresund bridge but alas changing our return flight to avoid DAT is not an option.

    Thanks again everyone.

    3 users thanked author for this post.

    SimonS1
    Participant

    Just my perception but in more recent years I would say it is statistically more likely you would have a safety issue with a fairly new Boeing.

    However I get that people book expecting the airline to deliver a service. I went on a day trip to Guernsey today, booked a return flight on Aurigny but due to their fleet issues the flights were being operated by Avantiair and Luxwing (never heard of either).

    1 user thanked author for this post.
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