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What will A380 bring to China Southern Airlines?

11-02-2011 12:48 BJT

Beijing, Nov.2 (PD Online) --An Airbus A380 with the flight number CZ3000 took off at the Beijing Capital International Airport at 10 a.m. on Oct. 17, making China Southern Airlines the first Chinese airline — and the seventh worldwide — to operate the super jumbo jet.

World's largest commercial aircraft

The A380 is the world's largest commercial aircraft and first aircraft operated by a Chinese airline featuring a luxurious first-class cabin, with thoughtful design and comfortable services.

Tickets for the A380's 26 scheduled flights from Oct. 17 to Oct. 29 have almost been sold out. China Southern Airlines said that among all the aircraft it operates, the A380 is most sought-after and has the highest passenger load factor. Furthermore, the tickets for the A380’s first-class seats are sold out faster than the tickets for economy-class seats.

Better reputation and greater market share

Each A380 costs up to 250 million U.S. dollars, not to mention its high operating and maintenance costs. If the occupancy is not satisfactory, the super jumbo jet may cause China Southern Airlines to suffer "super" losses.

Airbus said that generally speaking, an A380 can generate profits as long as the passenger load factor is higher than 65 percent, and the three cabins are fully used.

Regarding this issue, the Board Chairman of the China Southern Airlines Si Xianmin said that the profitability of the A380 plane is connected with the passenger load factor and also the flight course, network arrangement, ticket price strategy and some other factors.

An A380 plane can hold 506 passengers, and its maximum voyage is 15,000 kilometers. An A380 plane can bring its advantages into play and maximize profit only on a long international flight course. China Southern Airlines has made a strategic plan and will make its A380 planes fly international flight courses after the second A380 plane is delivered in December 2011.

Meanwhile, the China Southern Airlines also clearly expressed that the operational courses of the A380 plane will focus on offering high-quality services for high-end customers and will not participate in the price war. The A380 plane should be able to obtain steady commercial customers based solely on its hardware and software.

China's civil aviation entering era of super large passenger planes.

The China Southern Airlines has successfully introduced the A380 plane, indicating that China's civil aviation has entered the era of super large passenger planes.

In recent years, China's GDP grew rapidly, and China's civil aviation sector maintained a development speed twice as fast as the GDP growth rate. The number of China's plane passengers is soaring and, according to predictions, will reach 300 million in 2011. The number of passengers on China Southern Airlines was the largest in Asia and the third largest in the world. Many airline companies in China have set the goal of "being a super global passenger transporter."

Editor:Zhang Jianfeng |Source: People's Daily

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