I unfortunately could not find any information regarding the fuel consumption of a plane during take off vs crusing. However, I believe it would take quite a bit more fuel to achieve lift off and get to the desired altitude than to just fly the plane. For take off to occur, the plane starts from a stop at the end of the runway, and will need to reach quite a high speed to generate the lift required to get the plane in the air, to me this seems like it would require more gas. If you think of trying to get a car up a hill starting from a stop at the bottom, you need to depress the gas quite a bit further to get it up the hill than you would once you reach a flat point at the top of the hill to maintain the same speed.
However, if that doesn’t convince you, we can also look at the weight of the plane. The plane will weigh the most it ever will during the flight when it takes off. So, being that the plane will lose weight as it flies, it will get easier to push that mass through the air, and become more fuel efficient.
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