IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

The influence of aircraft size on airline operating costs

Listed author(s):
  • Nicol, David J
Registered author(s):

    Many previous studies have shown that there are probably no economies of scale in the airline industry directly attributable to firm size. Scale effects within the firm, however, have often been suggested, particularly for example with regard to such firm-size independent factors as market density, route length, or aircraft size. The focus of this paper is the effect of aircraft size on an airline's unit cost. Though much of the previous evidence appears to be at variance with a priori expectations, the empirical results presented here suggest that most of the divergence is probably due to a conceptually inadequate basis of comparison. Appropriately compared, actual unit costs were generally found to decrease at a decreasing rate with aircraft size, though as the route length parameter is reduced some mild diseconomies appeared. Of further interest, the behavior with size of the underlying cost components was found to be quite diverse, the (far from uniform) decreases with size in unit crew, fuel, and maintenance costs being offset somewhat by increases in unit capital costs, insurance plus other costs, and landing fees.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Omega.

    Volume (Year): 6 (1978)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 15-24

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:eee:jomega:v:6:y:1978:i:1:p:15-24
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    Order Information: Postal:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jomega:v:6:y:1978:i:1:p:15-24. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.