Hello Capt Lim!
I am reading your site with great interest - lots of good and informative stuff.
I have one question; I was on a flight to JFK, on a British Airways Boeing 777 the other day. It was my first flight on the type. It was a very nice and gentle ride, so much so, that I took another look at your site when I came back, to see your comments on the issue on the Boeing 777 compared to the Airbus 340. You say that the Boeing 777, due to its stiffer wing design, takes turbulence better than the Airbus 340. Although the intention and the philosophy of the Airbus engineers was the exact opposite, thus giving the Airbus 330/340 "softer" wings. Now- when you say the Boeing 777 is gentler in turbulent conditions, how much of a difference is there really? Is the difference discernible, or is this a notion strictly reserved to the professionals?
I am going on a Scandinavian flight to Newark later this year. That flight will, in all probability, be on an Airbus 330-300. I am going to try and get a seat in just about the same place, as on the Boeing 777 - just for the hell and interest in it. Would you know, if there is a difference in the behavior in turbulence between the Airbus 340 and Airbus 330 since the internals of the respective wings are quite different?
And lastly, due to many similarities, how different is the Airbus 330-300 compared to the Boeing 777-200 flight characteristically?
Thank you in advance.
Yes, it was the intention of the Airbus 330/340 designers to make 'softer' and 'flexier' wings to absorb turbulence better. Somehow, in my opinion, it was probably a wee bit 'softer' than the Boeing 777 so much so that one begins to feel the differences more in the cabin when turbulence is encountered. This is how the pilots feel about it but the best person to give another opinion is the customer. (You can see another opinion from another reader on similar topic in this site) Since you are going to fly on the Airbus 330 to Newark later this year, I would like to find out from you too. Again, comparison can be as little difficult because the environmental conditions may be different in the two circumstances. So, in the end, the differences can only be accurately accessed by a pilot who flies these two airplanes because they know they are making the comparison based on the same weather conditions and speeds.
I cannot tell you the differences in comfort between an Airbus 330 and 340. I believe, structurally, they are almost similar, except that the Airbus 340 has an extra 2 engines.
It is difficult to give a precise answer to your last question and I have already answered one in my previous FAQ.