TG's stored A346s could resume service

Old Nov 5, 19, 8:47 pm
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TG's stored A346s could resume service

The deputy transport minister has apparently suggested that instead of procuring new wide-body planes, TG should look into refurbishing the A346s which have been stored (and maintained) at UTP for 5 years, and putting them back into service. Considering that procuring seats, retrofitting and getting the planes fit to fly is a lengthy process, I am not sure this is the best of ideas economically. Operating costs would be high because of fuel consumption however, they would not suffer leasing costs associated with new fleet additions.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/willhor.../#20a413da7fc7

A five-year rest in a Thai beach town may be idyllic, but not for the six Thai Airways A340-600s parked at Pattaya’s U-Tapao airport 147km outside of Bangkok accumulating maintenance charges while awaiting a buyer for the unpopular aircraft. Instead, the Thai government is now advising the flag carrier to consider putting the A340-600s back into service after updating the cabin interior.
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Old Nov 5, 19, 9:38 pm
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Another genius suggestion for TG, they are past their sell by date & as you say, refurbishment would cost a fortune & take forever.
LH cannot give theirs away, all being shipped to the Desert.
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Old Nov 5, 19, 10:21 pm
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Exactly - unless they have a dirt-cheap fuel supply hidden somewhere to offset the consumption (I know, unrealistic - but the MoF does own PTT after all..), and a bunch of new lie-flat seats in stock, I do not see this as a viable option. The fact that there have been nobody willing to take them for the past five years should serve as a hint...
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Old Nov 6, 19, 12:45 am
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Hmm.. the idea is not that bad. Why is the A346 much worse/more expensive to operate than the A340? (which is still in operation with many airlines). The A346 is larger so I would expect the operating to costs to be lower per pax than for the A340. Also LH and IB still operates a lot of A346 AFAIK.

I'm aware that the birds need to refurbished with new seats, IFE etc but that should be manageable.
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Old Nov 6, 19, 1:11 am
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Originally Posted by SK AAR View Post
Hmm.. the idea is not that bad. Why is the A346 much worse/more expensive to operate than the A340? (which is still in operation with many airlines). The A346 is larger so I would expect the operating to costs to be lower per pax than for the A340. Also LH and IB still operates a lot of A346 AFAIK.

I'm aware that the birds need to refurbished with new seats, IFE etc but that should be manageable.
I think it'd need favourable fuel prices and full pax loads on long haul to even try and compete. The 340 is a 'lame duck' it seems.

From the wikipedia entry:

On 10 November 2011, Airbus announced the end of the A340 program. At that time, the company indicated that all firm orders had been delivered.[66] The decision to terminate the program came as A340-500/600 orders came to a halt, with analyst Nick Cunningham pointing out that the A340 "was too heavy and there was a big fuel burn gap between the A340 and Boeing’s 777".

Bertrand Grabowski, managing director of aircraft financier DVB Bank SE, noted "in an environment where the fuel price is high, the A340 has had no chance to compete against similar twin engines, and the current lease rates and values of this aircraft reflect the deep resistance of any airlines to continue operating it"
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Old Nov 6, 19, 1:37 am
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I wonder if they could use them on high volume short haul routes (e.g. BKK<>HKT.) They are even more fuel inefficient on short flights, but fuel as percentage of total costs (or at least revenue) is usually a lot lower on short hauls.
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Last edited by 5khours; Nov 6, 19 at 1:46 am
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Old Nov 6, 19, 1:45 am
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What kind of condition would these be in after being parked in Thai climate for five years? There's a reason US carriers park their aircraft in places like Victorvile and Tucson - no humidity.
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Old Nov 6, 19, 2:16 am
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Originally Posted by 5khours View Post
I wonder if they could use them on high volume short haul routes (e.g. BKK<>HKT.) They are even more fuel inefficient on short flights, but fuel as percentage of total costs (or at least revenue) is usually a lot lower on short hauls.
The problem is that the birds are not needed for shorthaul regional or domestic flights. The are needed to maintain flights to Europe, OZ and the US. TG has already too many longhaul birds for short day time regional or domestic flights (after arriving from Europe in the early morning and before departing to Europe around midnight)
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Old Nov 6, 19, 2:36 am
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
What kind of condition would these be in after being parked in Thai climate for five years? There's a reason US carriers park their aircraft in places like Victorvile and Tucson - no humidity.
I believe that TG has been performing constant maintenance on these frames to keep them airworthy, making the cost of keeping them idle reach even more absurd levels.
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Old Nov 6, 19, 7:02 am
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Originally Posted by SKT-DK View Post
I believe that TG has been performing constant maintenance on these frames to keep them airworthy, making the cost of keeping them idle reach even more absurd levels.
Absurd indeed. Still I would imagine they'll have to do a complete interior refit. Moldy carpet anyone?
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Old Nov 6, 19, 7:33 am
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Maybe they could shut down 2 engines once at cruising altitude to save fuel after all theres the right way and theres the Thai way.
Have to admit i do miss that surge of power you got whem they throttled up for take off the newer planes domt seem to have the same kind of feeling .
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Old Nov 6, 19, 8:27 am
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Originally Posted by tg911 View Post
Maybe they could shut down 2 engines once at cruising altitude to save fuel after all theres the right way and theres the Thai way.
Have to admit i do miss that surge of power you got whem they throttled up for take off the newer planes domt seem to have the same kind of feeling .
LOL
but pls only on TG911 LHR-BKK
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Old Nov 6, 19, 8:28 am
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Absurd indeed. Still I would imagine they'll have to do a complete interior refit. Moldy carpet anyone?
They would indeed, and that is part of the directive from the deputy transport minister too - which could take up to a year........
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Old Nov 6, 19, 9:41 am
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
What kind of condition would these be in after being parked in Thai climate for five years? There's a reason US carriers park their aircraft in places like Victorvile and Tucson - no humidity.
Exactly & this is Thailand, they might have paid for ‘constant maintenance’ but did they actually receive any, no one wants A346 so many on the market, Thailand is a tourist destination, use them for that, a quirky hotel or bar or sell them for scrap but get real....
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Old Nov 6, 19, 9:45 am
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Originally Posted by tg911 View Post
Maybe they could shut down 2 engines once at cruising altitude to save fuel after all theres the right way and theres the Thai way.
Have to admit i do miss that surge of power you got whem they throttled up for take off the newer planes domt seem to have the same kind of feeling .
Yes but TIT.... they could get carried away & shut more down, given their age it’s likely to happen sometime anyway...
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