Delta's Decrepit Fleet

Old Jul 19, 10, 6:44 am
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Delta's Decrepit Fleet

Emirates just announced that they are buying 30 additional 777-300ERs from Boeing, bringing their total 777 fleet to 101 planes. I won't even mention the nice Airbuses they have (A380-800s) etc. Is Delta ever going to be a legitimate international airline? Their 767s are old, dated, and hardly "best in class" as the VAST VAST majority do not have AVOD or service comparable to any of their foreign competitors. Last week Delta had three 767s with mechanical issues at JFK in one day. Yes, much better than a 767 at the bottom of the Atlantic, but I find it more as a precursor of things to come. Why is Delta's fleet so irrelevant? How did they miss the plane completely with 777s? Their 747s (ex NWA as we know) are a joke. How can you fly from NRT-DTW 11 hours and not even have AVOD? Delta never seems to look too far ahead. They add WIFI on domestic flights (ground based) yet airlines like Emirates have satellite WIFI that works over the ocean. Seems like Delta loves spending money twice: once to do ground-based WIFI and then the inevitable satellite WIFI they will eventually upgrade to in 2020. So no new planes = poor fuel efficiency = lost potential to make profits = inability to acquire new planes. I find it humorous that the "best in class" airline is buying discarded MD-90s from China (wow America, we rock) and people are excited about this on flyertalk. I would be excited if Delta could add one new 777 a year, much less 30 purchases at a time!

That's my rant, have a good day everyone.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 6:55 am
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Originally Posted by andrewpartyman View Post
I would be excited if Delta could add one new 777 a year, much less 30 purchases at a time!

That's my rant, have a good day everyone.
Your dose of excitement is granted for 2010.

http://www.tradingmarkets.com/news/s...ft-875112.html
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Old Jul 19, 10, 6:58 am
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Emirates is subsidized by a family controlled government of a resource rich land (UAE, not just Dubai). (NB: There are essentially no income taxes in the UAE. Americans: Imagine that!)

Delta, like all US carriers, is forced to compete and does not benefit from much government largesse.

Unfortunately, DL's situation (and all US carriers) is this: Nearly all US pax base their carrier selection primarily in price. If Emirates is $1,500 and Delta is $1,200 for the same route (example: JFK-DXB), most US customers will select Delta.

Until US customers are willing to pay up for service (30+ years of post-deregulation data shows otherwise), it will be a further race to the bottom in terms of service on US carriers.

Funny how that works...everyone wants a cheap seat at time of booking...but then complains enroute about the experience.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 7:04 am
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NY Banker: I agree with everything. Dubai is buying everything with a large government credit card, not even sure if Emirates is that profitable (if at all--I know Ethiad isn't), although it is a nice asset in the meantime. Americans will always opt for cheaper, so I guess Delta, AA, UA, etc will all continue to operate as is.

And I didn't know the DTW-HKG route was being flown with a new plane. I figured it was just reassigned from elsewhere, so I guess I do have my share of excitement for 2010. I fly a lot of Delta routes that are just awful on the 767 and seem in demand enough to be flown with a 777 (Amman-JFK, JFK-Moscow, etc.) I hope they build their 777 fleet up more.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 7:12 am
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If you compare any US carrier's fleet to EK you will be sorely disappointed.

And you'll be pleased to know that EK's shiny new Boeings are almost certainly being financed at below market rates by Uncle Sam, using financing which is of course unavailable to Delta, AA, UA, etc.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 7:16 am
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Old equipment is not being maintained either

Not only does Delta have very old, outdated equipment, it is not being maintained either. I have noticed that on most of our flights the aircraft is dirty and dilapidated ie. broken tables, filthy lavatories. Recently had BE experience that was a joke as far as equipment was concerned.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 7:17 am
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Originally Posted by legends5lou View Post
Not only does Delta have very old, outdated equipment, it is not being maintained either. I have noticed that on most of our flights the aircraft is dirty and dilapidated ie. broken tables, filthy lavatories. Recently had BE experience that was a joke as far as equipment was concerned.
try flying on one of UA's 757s.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 7:18 am
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I wouldn't get too excited about Emirates. Yes the AVOD is fantastic, but their 777s squeeze in 10 seats per row in coach (AF are the only other carrier I know of who do that) and most of their J seats are old-style recliners. Even the newer J seats aren't true lie-flat.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 7:24 am
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Originally Posted by 3Cforme View Post
Your dose of excitement is granted for 2010.

http://www.tradingmarkets.com/news/s...ft-875112.html
Thanks for the link. Despite what it says in there, DTW-PVG does not fly the flat bed equipped 777s yet.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 7:34 am
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Originally Posted by nwrep2009 View Post
Thanks for the link. Despite what it says in there, DTW-PVG does not fly the flat bed equipped 777s yet.
They do a couple days a week and then use the old awful 777s the other days, which are still an improvement on the 767s used on most international routes.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 7:43 am
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I have flown Emirates a few times and almost cannot believe the cleanliness of the aircraft, the delicious food offerings. the very very high level of service etc. The one item I never saw aboard Emirates was the constant FA "chat" almost always going on aboard all US carriers.

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Old Jul 19, 10, 7:56 am
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Originally Posted by NYBanker View Post
Emirates is subsidized by a family controlled government of a resource rich land (UAE, not just Dubai). (NB: There are essentially no income taxes in the UAE. Americans: Imagine that!)

Delta, like all US carriers, is forced to compete and does not benefit from much government largesse.

Unfortunately, DL's situation (and all US carriers) is this: Nearly all US pax base their carrier selection primarily in price. If Emirates is $1,500 and Delta is $1,200 for the same route (example: JFK-DXB), most US customers will select Delta.

Until US customers are willing to pay up for service (30+ years of post-deregulation data shows otherwise), it will be a further race to the bottom in terms of service on US carriers.

Funny how that works...everyone wants a cheap seat at time of booking...but then complains enroute about the experience.
The Economist last month did an excellent briefing on the Gulf airlines' upsetting the aviation market. Emirates is finally turning a profit...

http://www.economist.com/node/16271573
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Old Jul 19, 10, 7:57 am
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Originally Posted by blagger View Post
I wouldn't get too excited about Emirates. Yes the AVOD is fantastic, but their 777s squeeze in 10 seats per row in coach (AF are the only other carrier I know of who do that) and most of their J seats are old-style recliners. Even the newer J seats aren't true lie-flat.
The 767 is well-liked by passengers due to its lack of middle seats. It also works well if you are traveling as a couple or as a family with the 2-3-2 configuration. Yes, it would be better to have AVOD in every seat and I believe that's in DL's plans. But getting an aisle seat on a 8+ hour flight wins hands down over the 3-4-3 (AF) and 2-5-2 (AA) configuration of other airlines' 777s, where you are likely to be 2 or 3 seats away from an aisle.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 8:04 am
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Originally Posted by andrewpartyman View Post
I fly a lot of Delta routes that are just awful on the 767 and seem in demand enough to be flown with a 777 (Amman-JFK, JFK-Moscow, etc.) I hope they build their 777 fleet up more.
AMM-JFK is flown with the 76T which has nose-to-tail AVOD PTVs

JFK-SVO during the summer is flown with the 767-400ER, again, with nose-to-tail AVOD PTVs.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 8:06 am
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This is not just a DL/US legacy problem. OECD countries' (excluding Singapore, S.korea) flag carriers are having lots of problems. Look at the problems AF/KLM/ BA, Lufthansa, Alitalia, etc. have been having.

The only carriers that are making mass purchases are either low-cost carriers for 737/A319/20s, leasing companies, or the Middle East airlines that have deep-pocketed backers.

I doubt DL will go-through with NWs 787 order. I think the only large purchase in wide-body craft pending for a US legacy carrier is UAs decision on 787 v A350.
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