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Old 11th Aug 2017, 00:52   #1 (permalink)

Probationary PPRuNer
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Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: KIX
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Operations: Airline Flight Scheduling

Good day everyone and it is my first post here in PPRuNe.

I am a young airline professional working in the ground operations department of a local LCC here in Japan. One of my current tasks include daily oversight of ground handling in our base and outstations as well. The task involves a lot of last minute flight changes assigned to the aircraft which results into a lot of arrangements required (good thing we operate one aircraft type only).

Since I am very curious person, I am interested to know how it goes in other airlines. Doesn't have to mention the airline if it is confidential but would be glad to know if so as well. I think my question shall fit to other LCCs but FSCs insight would also help

1. In a current day, how often does an aircraft involve in flight change?

2. If the first set of flights are running late, is it automatically planned to swap it with another aircraft to save delay? How often and what conditions merit the change?

3. Is the aircraft planned for International flights the whole day and Domestic v.v or mixed? How does the aircraft handled during domestic<> international? Here it involves a lot of jurassic faxing to different departments in case we change from I to D v.v., but customs usually do not inspect our aircraft in between.

4. Does onboard fueling a normal process to your airline? In case of Japan, onboard fueling is normally prohibited unless exceptional cases such as diversions, tech landing. It puts pressure to local LCCs operating in tight turnarounds.

Appreciate your inputs!
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Old 11th Aug 2017, 21:56   #2 (permalink)
Join Date: Nov 2007
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Welcome to PPRuNe theflyingjapman,

I'll speak from what I see from the flight deck. I know I don't have the whole picture, but this is what I see from my window!

1. It doesn't seem to happen all that frequently. Typically only with IROPS (Irregular Operations). Therefore, expanding the math to all the other Captains, I'd say it would have to happen a couple times a week, expanding to a lot more during those IROPS.

2. Not normally at our outfit, unless the delay is extreme. The way the world was described to me is that someone in our OCC (Operational Control Centre) will look at how many passengers will be affected by the delays. The more passengers and their connections that will be affected, the more likely ops will try and organize a tail swap. Otherwise, for small delays, they won't bother and will focus their attention on the larger operational concerns.

3. Mixed. If there is an IROP that occurs and a tail swap is done, we simply have to update the flight plan and do another security check. However, they do try and leave those swaps for the first or last flight of the day to minimize the delays caused by the paperwork.

4. We almost always fuel with passengers onboard. With that said, we take a lot of different safety precautions that, if not met, mean we cannot have passengers onboard. It would be near impossible to operate a LCC or ULCC if we had to wait until fuelling was done.
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Old 13th Aug 2017, 08:29   #3 (permalink)

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Thank you for your inputs!

Judging by your answers, those are what I was expecting, and I expect my company to do, but seems the Japanese way of working especially in the airline industry makes it really difficult on what should be simple.

Especially in #4, the aviation authority here strictly prohibits local carriers to do onboard fueling even with procedures set, unless it is special situations, while foreign carriers operating here are free to do so. So for us that has 35 minutes TAT, you can imagine the crunch.

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