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Differences between the most popular planes used by airliners today

Differences between the most popular planes used by airliners today
By Max Rogers

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We are so engaged in flying and traveling the world that we use airplanes almost daily. Well, at least some of us do. But, it is an interesting ability to tell the difference between them. At the first sight, all of them are large and white, but there are plenty of differences, something we will explain in the content below.


Double Deckers: There Are Only 2 Types of Them

Tp 201808 Feature 01 2At the moment, we have only 2 types of double-deckers, one made by Airbus and the other made by Boeing. Without any doubt, you will know what a double-decker is when you see it. In simple words, they are the biggest airplanes that cruise the sky and they are also the most sophisticated.


Anyway, we have:


鈥 Airbus 380: It is the biggest airplane ever made for commercial applications. You will notice it due to the fact it is a full double-decker. The upper platform extends across the full length of the plane. If you look at it from the front, you will see wings which are curved.

鈥 Boeing 747: It is half-decker. So the upper platform is present only across the front part of the plane. Nevertheless, it is a powerful plane and looks impressive. This double-decker is the most commonly used airplane for long journeys.


Although Boeing 747 is more popular, some airlines have started replacing it. Also, Boeing is currently developing a new, double-decker plane. We will have to wait to see the all-new model, which will probably be bigger and more powerful than current double-deckers.


Mid-size Planes

Tp 201808 Feature 02All of the planes we have just explained are larger models. Now it is time to meet mid-size ones. Basically, they may look the same or similar at least, but they are shorter and here we have no double-deckers.


Large planes are used for long journeys, across the Atlantic etc. while mid-sized ones are used for shorter destinations, making them extremely popular. The simplest method to tell a difference is to count the number of doors. If there are 4 doors, you will be inside one of the:


鈥 Boeing 777-200
鈥 Airbus A330
鈥 Boeing 787
鈥 Airbus A340
鈥 Airbus A321


We will add that airplanes with 3 doors are regional planes, while those with 5 doors are the biggest of them all. Those with 4 doors are obviously in the middle. An interesting fact is that A340 has 4 engines, which renders it extremely rare and it is the only plane with this feature on the list here.


Differences between Boeing and Airbus


They are the most popular and the biggest manufacturers of airplanes. Being able to tell the difference between these two brands can render the entire job 50% easier.


So we have Boeing planes, which always have a sharp nose, while Airbuses have rounded ones. We should add that only Airbus 330 and 340 have sharper noses, those which look similar to Boeing. Keep in mind that difference isn鈥檛 so obvious, but if you compare them, you will see that Boeing noses are similar to the shark鈥檚 nose, while Airbus has a nose similar to a dog鈥檚 nose. Additionally, noses are different among double-deckers, but they are already explained, so there is no need to pay attention to this element.



Tp 201808 Feature 03From a distance, you won鈥檛 be able to tell the difference. Up close, Airbus models use square windows, while Boeing has 鈥樷檚harp鈥欌 windows. The easiest way to tell a difference is to look at the line of a window next to other, front windows. Airbus has a straight line, while Boeing has a line which slants forward. In other words, Boeing planes have windows which look like triangles, while Airbuses use square ones.



Tp 201808 Feature 04Boeing tail blades are close to the rear end, while Airbus uses blades which are moved frontward of a plane. Still, the difference is minimal, but noticeable. In addition look at the shape of the rear end. Boeing has sharper rear end than Airbus.


Differences between A330 and A321

Tp 201808 Feature 05They may look the same, but A330 is much bigger. It also has double wheels at the back and a sharp nose. Nose and tail are the same as other Airbus models, traditional ones in particular. A321 is smaller and has traditional Airbus nose. It doesn鈥檛 have double back wheels as well. In addition, it has a completely typical Airbus design.


A330 vs. 777

Tp 201808 Feature 06These two planes are the hardest to identify. Both of them look the same and both have 5 doors. Yes, some have 4 doors and emergency door, which for you still means 5 doors! Anyway, A330 looks sharper and longer. It has traditional Airbus windows and tail. Boeing 777 is bigger and looks like a standard model.


We would recommend you to pay attention to the overall appearance. Boeing 777 looks much bigger and heavier plane, while A330 has a 鈥樷檚harper鈥欌 look.


Boeing 777-300: Extra-long

Tp 201808 Feature 07The planes we mentioned above are double-deckers. The Boeing 777-300 isn鈥檛, but it is one of the longest planes ever made. In addition, it is a popular choice of airliners and most of them choose it due to its practicality. Nevertheless, not all 777-300 are the same. For instance, 777-200 is a model used by American airliners. It is shorter than the 300.


This model is also abbreviated to 773, while the newer version (777-300er) is also available as 77w. The easiest way to tell a difference is by counting doors. An airplane with 5 doors is 777-300, without doubt. It isn鈥檛 a double-decker, but it is still one of the largest planes on the planet, or in the sky.


Differences between 777-200 and 787

Tp 201808 Feature 08The main difference between these two planes is the nose. The 777-200 has a traditional Boeing nose and it is sharper than the second plane. It is also one of the longest planes used today.


The 787 has a strange nose, and it looks completely flat. Of them all, 787 has the most original design, which can help you identify it. Look at the part above the cockpit - it is curved, starting from the front point of the nose and then goes straight backward. It also has 4 doors.




Now you should be able to tell the difference between planes. It is much better when you know the plane in which you fly.

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