Flying on a commercial airliner is an experience that millions of people take for granted every year. What many may not be aware of, however, is the differences between the various types of aircraft used by airlines.
One such comparison to consider is between two popular Boeing models: the 747 and 777. What are the differences between these two planes?
Is one bigger than the other? What kind of range do they have? Let’s explore these questions and more as we compare and contrast a Boeing 747 with its larger counterpart, a Boeing 777.
How we will compare the two planes?
Comparing the two aircraft will involve scrutinizing their profitability, since cost-effectiveness is a major factor in any airline’s decision.
Aside from the initial price tag and leasing costs, we will need to study elements such as fuel consumption, maintenance costs and seat capacity.
Whilst all planes feature certain advantages, such as an Airbus A350 being quieter than a 777x, these factors all contribute directly to potential profits for the company, so these are what we will focus on during this comparison.
To that end, we will be dealing with the latest versions of both aircrafts: the Boeing 777x-9 which has 273 orders and the Boeing 747-8 which has 150 orders. We hope to enable readers to make thoughtful decisions based on facts and our analysis afterwards.
The Boeing 777x is often referred to as a replacement for the older but popular Boeing 747, yet it doesn’t seem to hold up when discussing passenger capacity.
Even though the two planes have almost identical dimensions in terms of length and width, the extra level on the 747 gives it an edge that outshines its successor when transporting people.
This is likely a large part of why the Boeing 747 has been such a success, and with this kind of advantage it’s easy to see why it remains at the top of the industry.
The capacity of cargo largely determines how efficiently commercial aircrafts can transport goods and supplies. In this aspect, the Boeing 777x clearly outperforms the Boeing 747, being able to handle substantially more load.
Increased economies of scale as a result of increased cargo capacity makes it possible for airlines to optimize their relative yields per plane, allowing them to reap greater profits than before.
Moreover, larger planes mean less overall fuel burnt and emission generated while delivering the same amount of goods over fewer trips when compared to smaller aircrafts.
Fewer travel times also ensure greater checkpoint control, establishing an additional advantage in favour of the Boeing 777x; its ability to carry significantly more cargo gives it a distinct edge over the Boeing 747.
Boeing’s 747-8 has turned out to be the superior option when it comes to range due to its greater fuel capacity.
The plane overflows with fuel compared to the other competitor in the market, the 777x, allowing for a better grasp on long-distance flights.
The success of Boeing brings good news to travelers as it is more likely that their flights can arrive at remote locations without having to refuel.
While fuel efficiency is important for airlines, ultimately reaching the destination safely and quickly gives customers a higher quality experience. Boeing’s 747-8 being able to provide both has made them a clear winner.
Boeing 747 remains a leader in the commercial airline industry for its heavy-lifting capacity and now, a noteworthy advantage over other aircraft models in range: it has an approximately 1000km extra range compared to the newer releases like the 777x-9.
However, worth noting is that even with this increased range, the smaller model of the 777x—the 777x-8—has an even larger range than the 747. Undoubtedly, when comparing these two aircraft models, Boeing’s 747 comes out as a clear winner on range.
What about fuel efficiency? – difference between a Boeing 747 and a 777
With its four engines, the Boeing 747 can generate twice as much power as the two-engine Boeing 777x-9, but is burning significantly more fuel in doing so.
Fuel prices for both aircraft are not yet public or quantifiable, however based on past Boeing aircrafts Aviation Fuel Prices suggest 13,380 per hour for a 747 and 9366 per hour for a 777.
All of this suggests that the amount of fuel burned by a four engine aircraft will be more expensive than its two-engine counterpart.
This isn’t to say that one option is better than the other, however when it comes to fuel efficiency that extra power of the four engine airplane should come with some consideration.
What about cost? – difference between a Boeing 747 and a 777
The two featured aircrafts may be similar in terms of features and capabilities, but when it comes to cost, one stands out above the other.
The unit cost for a Boeing 747-8 is $402.9 million USD while a 777x-9 will set you back $425.8 million USD. This discrepancy might be surprising but newer production technologies have allowed the Boeing 747 to remain a more affordable option than its successor.
Additionally, if you’re looking at the freight variant of the 747, the price tag increases by an extra million dollars – confirmative that bigger means more expensive! All things considered, it appears to be clear which aircraft offers better value, making a decision quite simple.
Which is best? – difference between a Boeing 747 and a 777
When it comes to selecting an aircraft, the decision is not always a simple one as it depends on what you want it for. Currently, the 747 and 777x-9 are the most popular versions airlines go for.
The Boeing 747 has long been a trusted and well known model with its design allowing it to transport more passengers and fly further distances than some of its competitors.
Therefore if you run a luxury airline that doesn’t worry too much about fuel prices, the 747 would be preferable.
Alternatively if range difference between two models is not significant and your primary concern is fuel costs, then going with the newer Boeing 777x-9 could end up being more beneficial in the long run.
With fuel prices on the rise, four hefty engines consuming petrol constantly isn’t an attractive option anymore. In such circumstances, I believe that savings made with the 777 make it a better plane overall and we hope you got what is the main difference between a Boeing 747 and a 777.