South Africa Day Flights

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Old Jul 2, 19, 1:32 am
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South Africa Day Flights

Just got bused past a parked BA A380 at JNB, after coming in on a B747. Both of which (along with a fair few other European carriers) seem to spend their day dozing in the South African winter sun.

Considering BA never leaves any money on the table, why would BA not get these birds to work for a day rotation back to London?

I would guess part of the answer is that most people will prefer the night flight, but surely that is not reason enough to just let these birds idle away for a full day?
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Old Jul 2, 19, 1:37 am
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Its not just most people prefer a night flight. ITs the fact that most people (especially premium pax) will pay a lot more for a night flight. They have dabbled on and off with day flights over the years. but leaving the aircraft on the ground actually makes more money
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Old Jul 2, 19, 1:56 am
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Would also be a good opportunity to get a VFM clean of the interior, hopefully they take advantage of the opportunity?
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Old Jul 2, 19, 2:02 am
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Having done the JNB - LHR day flight just before it was axed, I'd be more than happy to choose it again over a night flight. Then again, I never sleep so well even in Club or First.

But as A P Yu implies above, someone at BA will have done the maths.
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Old Jul 2, 19, 2:07 am
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Connections play a large part of the equation too. Arriving late in the day in LHR leaves very little scope for onward connections, particularly to the States.

The fact that most European airlines day stop their aircraft in SA, and have done for many years, should show that that's what works best for the airlines financially.
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Old Jul 2, 19, 2:20 am
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And the same happens in reverse with SAA, they leave aircraft on the ground all day at LHR, FRA and MUC
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Old Jul 2, 19, 2:20 am
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Originally Posted by bhbloke View Post
Would also be a good opportunity to get a VFM clean of the interior, hopefully they take advantage of the opportunity?
Yes they do. I know VS do too.
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Old Jul 2, 19, 3:57 am
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if there were money to be made, BA would do it - the premium passengers who make the flight(s) viable by and large prefer night flights

interest question is whether the advent of more reliable in-flight Wifi might start to tip that balance...I can see the appeal of a day flight if one can reliably use it for work and not be out of contact
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Old Jul 2, 19, 4:03 am
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Originally Posted by ratypus View Post
if there were money to be made, BA would do it - the premium passengers who make the flight(s) viable by and large prefer night flights

interest question is whether the advent of more reliable in-flight Wifi might start to tip that balance...I can see the appeal of a day flight if one can reliably use it for work and not be out of contact
On my LHR-JNB it was very decent quality - though I have a gap of about 6 hours in the middle that I can't comment on - urge to sleep was stronger than the urge to work.
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Old Jul 2, 19, 4:15 am
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The DUR-LHR flight is during the daytime. How is that performing?
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Old Jul 2, 19, 10:24 am
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CPT-MUC on LH is a day time flight as well - seems to be doing pretty well (although the lowest fares available are always offered for this flight rather than LH CPT-FRA evening/night flight)
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Old Jul 2, 19, 11:16 am
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Originally Posted by shefgab View Post
Connections play a large part of the equation too. Arriving late in the day in LHR leaves very little scope for onward connections, particularly to the States.

The fact that most European airlines day stop their aircraft in SA, and have done for many years, should show that that's what works best for the airlines financially.
This makes sense but KLM have sucessfully operated their AMS-JNB and AMS-CPT as a daytime flight for years with the aircraft arriving in SA around 22.00 and a midnight departure back to AMS obviously arriving mid morning, so no problem with onward connections.

When my parents still lived in South Africa, I used to fly this route a couple of times a year and KLM were always my chosen carrier as I actually prefer daytime flights. I never sleep well on an aircraft even in Business and much prefer spending the flight reading or watching a couple of films knowing there is a comfortable bed after the flight with no disruption to my usual sleep pattern.
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Old Jul 2, 19, 1:25 pm
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Back in January 2008 I took a day flight CPT-LHR in First. The views from the plane over the Sahara were fantastic and it was a wonderful experience.
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Old Jul 2, 19, 2:00 pm
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I was told by a BA simulator pilot that because of JNBs elevation that fully laiden planes struggle to take off if itís hot during the day .Not sure how true that is ?
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Old Jul 2, 19, 2:40 pm
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Originally Posted by scottishpoet View Post
And the same happens in reverse with SAA, they leave aircraft on the ground all day at LHR, FRA and MUC
Much like BA/AA/etc (IB less so) to South America, where the aircraft sit on the ground for many hours to operate an overnight flight both ways.
Certain markets that are more leisure oriented (e.g. Rio) have a day flight outbound and the aircraft turns around directly to operate the return. I suppose this is also the rationale behind DUR/MRU/SEZ etc.
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