N asked in TravelAir Travel · 9 years ago

Why don't airlines upgrade flights to larger planes when they become full?

For example, I was looking at traveling from Chicago to Miami for spring break on American Airlines. Even with four months until spring break, several flights are already sold out and the others are almost full. All of the flights are scheduled to be flown with a Boeing 757. Why doesn't American upgrade the flights so that they can sell more seats? American Airlines already has several Airbus A300s and Boeing 767s parked out in the desert that could take over the route. I do realize some of those planes are broken but why don't they keep some of the planes flyable for big travel dates like around spring break. They have to know that lots of people travel to florida for every year around the same time.

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  • 9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    It is a lot easier said than done. Airlines make their schedule for a certain time period and then will adjust the flights depending on demand. Spring break is only a short while and to the airlines it is not worth switching to an Airbus 300 or a Boeing 767 because then you have to reschedule a flight crew trained to operate the A300 or 767. Also the 757 pilots then would not get their flying hours in. Also the 757 used on that flight is used later on to fly somewhere else. If they used an A300 or 767, after the aircraft flies from Florida with a full plane, the next flight that is used may only have a few passengers and then the airline will lose money.

    Plus the airplanes that are parked in the desert need time to be flight-worthy again and the airlines will have to spend a lot of money there to get it out of the desert.

  • 9 years ago

    It's not that easy. A plane that flies down there has to fly back, and if the seats are not full, they can't pay the bills. Plus it is very expensive to have a plane parked at an airport, so airlines do their best to have their planes up in the air as much as possible. Not to mention that fewer seats mean more profit, so they don't want excess capacity.

  • AJ
    Lv 7
    9 years ago

    The airlines goal is to have a full aircraft. And switching it out isn't that easy. First, there has to be a larger aircraft available. Airlines do not have aircraft just sitting around. They are either in a maintenance cycle or they are flying.

  • Ranger
    Lv 7
    9 years ago

    Greed. It is more profitable to fly a small plane with 100% full capacity than fly a large plane partially filled. The CEO of American Airlines couldn't care less if it is inconvenient for you, as long as the planes are completley filled and he is getting his big bonus for showing a profit.

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  • Neil
    Lv 7
    9 years ago

    Because the bigger planes are somewhere else, also full. It's not like they can afford to keep a bunch of extra planes around, doing nothing.

  • 9 years ago

    too much hassle...plus, then they need crews to fly them, etc.

    if it was worth their while, they would be doing it

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