24 May 2015

A350 Doha-New York route passenger, load and fuel analysis.

When flying Doha-JFK, the A350 will have to fly into persistent westerly winds.

One can see on the planned flight time that the average covered air distance is then close to 7,000nm.

At such distances and a realistic planning for alternates, there would be around 5 tonnes left for cargo at 80% load factor when passenger and bags have been loaded.

Going home from JFK to Doha, this could increase to 15 tonnes of cargo as now the winds are in the back.

Source: Jacob Pfleger

Here the aircraft would be cargo space limited to about 10 tonnes as there would be 25 LD3 positions left after the LD3s with bags are loaded and one count with around 400kg cargo per LD3 equivalent as average density.

Source: Jacob Pfleger

The 777-300ER, which is the present aircraft on the sector, takes 42 business passengers in 78 inch lie-flat seats in 2-2-2 and 293 economy seats in 9 abreast.

This shall be compared to A350’s 36 business in 1-2-1 lie-flat reverse herringbone and 247 economy in 9 abreast.

Source: Manuel Belleli

The A350 is thus 15% smaller in terms of capacity but Leeham´s model said it would burn around 35% less fuel when both aircraft fly with 80% load factors and 10 tonnes of cargo.

On a per transported passenger basis, this means the A350 will save Qatar around 15% on the fuel bill for its second New York rotation come next year, a nice incentive to deploy the A350 as a complement to the existing 777-300ER.

Based on the article “Airbus A350 start stretching its wings” published in Leeham.



  1. A really great incentive to buy and fly the A350-=IF YOU CAN GET ONE!
    Present backlog 31 aircraft for end of this year.

  2. Please show us anywhere where Airbus have said they'd deliver over 30 A350s this year? Assuming they are at Rate 3 moving to Rate 5 by year end and a 3-4 month build time I expect they'll deliver 15-18. And this is in line with what they've publicly said.