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MEA's Regional Network  
User currently offlineAF Cabin Crew From French Polynesia, joined Sep 1999, 1040 posts, RR: 33
Posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 3210 times:
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Ia Orana all from Tahiti !!!

I have a question concerning MEA...
MEA is set to join Skyteam after their tremendous turn around ! Congratulations By the way...
I would like to know what has MEA to offer in the region spanning from India to Turkey, What routes, the frequency and the aircraft.
Also Is MEA looking at opening new routes out of BEY to this region which it will be in charge of !

Happy Flying,

AF Cabin Crew.


Ia Maitai to tatou tere !
36 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineBA From United States of America, joined May 2000, 11153 posts, RR: 58
Reply 1, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 3199 times:

Here you go:

Click for full size version


Here is MEA's schedule effective October 26 to March 27:


MEA is indeed set to join Skyteam and it is excellent news.

MEA definately has turned around. It's a completely different airline from what it was 5 years ago.

At the moment, the CEO is not commenting on MEA's future plans. He has always been a very secretive CEO, however it's expected that MEA will start expanding, especially for preparation to join Skyteam.

MEA will definately be the next Qatar Airways/Emirates.

Regards



"Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need." - Khalil Gibran
User currently offlineAF Cabin Crew From French Polynesia, joined Sep 1999, 1040 posts, RR: 33
Reply 2, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 3175 times:
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BA,

You are good and quick !!!
MEA has a good coverage of the region, yet I think it is necessary that they fly daily to all the arab peninsula destination and if possible open new routes like BAH, DAH, Muscat, Colombo, Male etc...
I know some of these destinations might be difficult out of BEY but after they join SkyTeam, they might be able to launch these routes with the alliance partner being able to feed BEY with passengers...



Ia Maitai to tatou tere !
User currently offlineFlyingchoirboy From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 281 posts, RR: 4
Reply 3, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 3151 times:
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I hope they don't plan on flying to Tel Aviv anytime soon...that would be a disaster. Have they ever flown there before?


Flyingchoirboy: He sings, he flies, and sometimes he does both at the same time.
User currently offlineBA From United States of America, joined May 2000, 11153 posts, RR: 58
Reply 4, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 3143 times:

AF Cabin Crew,

MEA used to serve all the destinations you listed except Male until 1998. They cut them as part of there restructuring. They will probably reinstate some of them in the near future.

BEY is actually one of the biggest markets from the Gulf. It's the vacation spot of all rich Gulf people. Saudi Arabian, Kuwait Airways, all fly 747s during the summer and Emirates flies in multiple 777-300s.

However, MEA suffers greatly from competition in BEY due to the Open Skies agreement which is why they aren't as big as they could be.

That will hopefully change though.

Flyingchoirboy,

No, nor are they allowed to.

Only Egyptian and Jordanian registered aircraft and airlines are allowed to fly to Israel.



"Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need." - Khalil Gibran
User currently offlineAirxliban From Lebanon, joined Oct 2003, 4512 posts, RR: 53
Reply 5, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 3125 times:

they used to fly to what is now israel in the 1940's. they operated from beirut to some cities in the region that would have been referred to as Palestine, for example present day Haifa, using De Havilland Rapides.


PARIS, FRANCE...THE BEIRUT OF EUROPE.
User currently offlineKorg747 From United States of America, joined Mar 2003, 549 posts, RR: 5
Reply 6, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 3125 times:

Egyption (Egyptair) aircrafts that fly to Israel. They took the titles off. There is 2 A321 and 2 737.


View Large View Medium
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Photo © Krzysztof Skowronski [epwa_spotters]



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Photo © Andy Graf - VAP





Please excuse my English!
User currently offlineBA From United States of America, joined May 2000, 11153 posts, RR: 58
Reply 7, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 3118 times:

Yes, Egypt Air and Royal Jordanian both fly to Israel.

That's because Jordan and Egypt both signed peace treaties with Israel. Lebanon, Syria, and all other Arab nations have not.

Now please let us get back to the original topic.....



"Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need." - Khalil Gibran
User currently offlineMEA321 From Lebanon, joined Oct 2003, 389 posts, RR: 15
Reply 8, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 3109 times:



It is definitely a very exciting time for Lebanon and MEA! They used to serve CPH back in 1998, and before that. However the route, like BA indicated, was cut due to restructuring after the new CEO took over.

There is definitely a lot of potential in that market, I know that this summer there were SAS flights direct from CPH and ARN (Stockholm) to Beirut. It was only for the summer however. The Scandinavians love traveling, and there is also a high concentration of Lebanese in both countries.

From what I understand, Air France doesn't want MEA to go into CPH because it will direct a lot of traffic away from Paris. However, I hope this changes soon.



MEA321
User currently offlineBA From United States of America, joined May 2000, 11153 posts, RR: 58
Reply 9, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 3099 times:

From what I understand, Air France doesn't want MEA to go into CPH because it will direct a lot of traffic away from Paris. However, I hope this changes soon.

That's quite interesting.

I know the CPH service was an extension off of the FRA service.

Regards



"Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need." - Khalil Gibran
User currently offlineAirxliban From Lebanon, joined Oct 2003, 4512 posts, RR: 53
Reply 10, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 3076 times:

According to a source in MEA, many of the passengers heading from copenhagen to beirut connect through Geneva. Fly SAS into GVA and then continue with MEA to lebanon


PARIS, FRANCE...THE BEIRUT OF EUROPE.
User currently offlineMEA321 From Lebanon, joined Oct 2003, 389 posts, RR: 15
Reply 11, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 3018 times:

According to a source in MEA, many of the passengers heading from copenhagen to beirut connect through Geneva. Fly SAS into GVA and then continue with MEA to lebanon

Very good point. This summer the CPH-BEY route was hotly contested. I remember reading an article about MEA's relationship with Air France in regards to their European route network in Le Monde (french newspaper) over the summer. It specifically mentioned CPH as a destination that Air France didn't want MEA to go into. If I find the article online ill send a link in a later post.



MEA321
User currently offlineEurostarVA From Bahrain, joined May 2002, 1296 posts, RR: 7
Reply 12, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 2994 times:

I don't see MEA fit to become a significant part of SkyTeam unless they reinstate flights to Bahrain, Doha, Muscat and maybe Yemen. Otherwise, what's the point if AF cannot book passengers to those locations (that it doesn't serve) via Beirut? They might book them via Amsterdam (KLM) but that would show that KLM, ironically, has more Middle Eastern coverage than Middle East Airlines !

I am very optimistic about MEA's SkyTeam plans but I think that they must be more aggressive in their quest. I personally think they just have a few more routes to add (and maybe a bit more frequencies) to allow them a meaningful entry into SkyTeam.

This is what I suggest about new routes:

BEY-BAH-DOH (3-4 weekly initially)
BEY-MCT-Colombo(uhh code) (3 weekly)


More frequencies:

BEY-CAI (3 or 4 extra frequencies to feed traffic from CDG)
BEY-DAM (more frequencies will be used to travellers as this airport is not
served well as DXB is).

of course, with time, they might be able to add 2nd daily flights to Amman, Cairo, Jeddah, Riadh and Dubai (all the better for SkyTeam).

EurostarVA



If there is a will, there is a way
User currently offlineMozart From Luxembourg, joined Aug 2003, 2182 posts, RR: 13
Reply 13, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 2963 times:

Is it already DECIDED that MEA will join Skyteam? By when? It would be great news!!

I also hope they do what many people in other posts have forecasted, ie go to Sao Paulo, Sydney and Montreal.


User currently offlineAirxliban From Lebanon, joined Oct 2003, 4512 posts, RR: 53
Reply 14, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 2947 times:

I don't know how likely it would be for them to reinstate flights to Damascus.

To get from beirut to damascus by road, it is about a 2.5 hour ordeal and it costs 10 dollars. if there was an air route, you'd have to be at the airport what at least 1.5 hours in advance...and then about 45 minutes to fly...that already makes it futile.

In any event, I'm not sure how big the market for syria is but something tells me they can't even fill a couple A321s a week. Perhaps somecan can verify/refute this. When MEA used to have the route going, what were the load factors like?

It looks like El-Hout will have to start making some decisions if MEA is going to be an effective SkyTeam member. Frequencies to saudi arabia, amman and cairo should not be a problem, but perhaps some of the more remote destinations in the gulf could use some services.

Regards



PARIS, FRANCE...THE BEIRUT OF EUROPE.
User currently offlineEurostarVA From Bahrain, joined May 2002, 1296 posts, RR: 7
Reply 15, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 2912 times:

@AirxLiban,

Sorry, by DAM I meant DMM (Dammam). Damascus could work with 2 daily flights operated by a 20-seater aircraft. Definitely not with Airbus equipment. But doesn't Syrian Arab Airlines fly to Beirut? Are they offering still BEY-DXB?

The limiting problem in the Middle East is the lack of regional airports and many bilateral restrictions. This means there aren't many choices for local route expansion (at the moment, maybe the aeropolitical situation might soon change with exotic routes like BEY-Sharm El Sheikh, BEY-Alexandria, BEY-Aqaba being a reality, but I dont see this within the next few years).

Given the lack of choices for expansion, and given that other airports like Dubai, Jeddah, Amman are decently well-served by European carriers, it remains to be seen how MEA can carve a promising role for it in SkyTeam.

EurostarVA



If there is a will, there is a way
User currently offline7E7 From Australia, joined Aug 2003, 159 posts, RR: 1
Reply 16, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 2892 times:

There are many routes (mentioned in a previous post) that ME can enter with little competition or strong demand.

From the rate things are going (pretty slow I guess), ME), MEA needs another 3-5 years before attempting longer haul routes.
Once Iraq becomes stable, that will provide a lift to all middle eastern carriers.

Speaking at a smaller scale, there is certainly space for a regional network (Greece, Turkey, Cyprus, Syria, Iraq, Jordan, Egypt) to be strengthened with ATR's or Saab's, even BAe's, especially during holiday seasons.

More specific, Rene Mouawad Airport (KYE) can be setup as a regional hub with frequent connections to BEY. I read an article in a newspaper (Can not remember which) about a project of building a terminal with modern facilities at KYE to make it a centre for charters into the nearby city Tripoli's expo.



[Edited 2003-10-08 20:45:19]

User currently offlineMEA-707 From Netherlands, joined Nov 1999, 4328 posts, RR: 35
Reply 17, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 2868 times:

I will be in Lebanon next week ! Exciting to read about MEA... Does anyone of you know about some specials they might have and where to book? As I am there quite long it would be great to fly MEA again (last time was in 1995, great flights on all their types then, 720, 707 and A-310) if they have specials ($150ish) to Larnaca or Cairo or so.


nobody has ever died from hard work, but why take the risk?
User currently offlineBA From United States of America, joined May 2000, 11153 posts, RR: 58
Reply 18, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 2849 times:

I don't see MEA fit to become a significant part of SkyTeam unless they reinstate flights to Bahrain, Doha, Muscat and maybe Yemen. Otherwise, what's the point if AF cannot book passengers to those locations (that it doesn't serve) via Beirut? They might book them via Amsterdam (KLM) but that would show that KLM, ironically, has more Middle Eastern coverage than Middle East Airlines !

I really disagree. MEA doesn't need to serve many destinations in the Middle East in order to be a useful Skyteam carrier.

Please keep in mind that MEA already provides connections for Air France from Paris to Kuwait, Abu Dhabi, Jeddah, and Dubai.

Air France already serves Kuwait, Jeddah, and Dubai. However, the MEA feed provides additional possibilites for Air France, thus this benefits Air France passengers and Air France itself.

MEA doesn't need to grow quickly. You are asking too much of MEA. They will grow when needed and only to places they need to serve.

Bahrain, Muscat, Doha, and Sanaa are already well served by other carriers and MEA doesn't need to serve them.

If MEA serves these destinations, they will fail miserably. Don't forget EurostarVA, that MEA used to serve ALL those destinations you listed, but they were simply unprofitable and as a result MEA was losing millions. If MEA starts serving those markets again, they will start losing millions again.

I am very optimistic about MEA's SkyTeam plans but I think that they must be more aggressive in their quest. I personally think they just have a few more routes to add (and maybe a bit more frequencies) to allow them a meaningful entry into SkyTeam.

Again, I disagree. If MEA grows too much, they will start to suffer as they were before. MEA is aiming to have high frequencies. They are plenty sufficient to provide connections. MEA doesn't need more frequencies on the Middle East destinations they serve. They serve them more than sufficiently. MEA serves all Middle East destinations higher than its competitors with the exception of Dubai.

BEY-BAH-DOH (3-4 weekly initially)
BEY-MCT-Colombo(uhh code) (3 weekly)


Maybe in the future, not for a couple years. MEA served BEY-DOH-CMB until 1998.

BEY-CAI (3 or 4 extra frequencies to feed traffic from CDG)

CAI is served plenty enough. Daily A321 is more than sufficient for the route. Don't forget that Egypt Air operates the route on a daily basis as well.

I've flown BEY-CAI several times and it's never full. Maybe 60-70%. The frequency it's served at is perfect.

BEY-DMM (more frequencies will be used to travellers as this airport is not
served well as DXB is).


Starting November 1, MEA is increasing BEY-DMM from 2x weekly to 3x weekly. That's plenty enough.

Is it already DECIDED that MEA will join Skyteam? By when? It would be great news!!

Yes, in two years.

Given the lack of choices for expansion, and given that other airports like Dubai, Jeddah, Amman are decently well-served by European carriers, it remains to be seen how MEA can carve a promising role for it in SkyTeam.

Yes, the destinations MEA serves are already served by Skyteam, but that's still irrelevant. The point is MEA would be providing additional feed (more options) to Skyteam customers.

I have a feeling also that MEA joining Skyteam would mostly be for the benefit of MEA as well. Air France which helped out MEA throughout the 90's is the one that invited MEA and I feel they invited them to further strengthen MEA. In the future as MEA gets more passengers through Skyteam, they can expand and add new routes to the Middle East, but not before.

Once MEA joins Skyteam, I think you will start to see them expand quite a bit. But before that, I see them only doing minimal expansion if any at all.



"Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need." - Khalil Gibran
User currently offlineOD720 From Lebanon, joined Feb 2003, 1925 posts, RR: 32
Reply 19, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 2820 times:

7E7,

The Rene Mouawad airport would only see operations when low-cost infiltrates the Middle Eastern market. The thing is that Tripoli (Trablous) is only 80k (50miles) from Beirut.

MEA 707,

You might be able to get a round trip to Larnaca at that price. I know you have great respect for MEA and I respect that myself.
If you need any help during your stay, please email me, it's in my profile. By the way, excellent job with airlinerlist.

Best regards.


User currently offlineEurostarVA From Bahrain, joined May 2002, 1296 posts, RR: 7
Reply 20, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 2814 times:

BA,

I think your argument is more locally-oriented than globally-oriented which is what an airline alliance is all about.

I do agree with you however, after some thought, that considerable expansion will result from higher exposure AFTER joining SkyTeam. However, I think you will have to agree with me that MEA has some homework to do (as every airline wishing to join a gobal alliance) related to more route consolidation and frequency increases. It will take more clever thinking and marketing from Mr. Hout.

The expansion I talked about must be swift following en entry into SkyTeam.
The reason why BAH, DOH and MCT didn't work before was because of poor networking/scheduling and marketing. Granted, Gulf Air offers connections to Australia and this helps to fill its flights from Beirut, but don't forget that the Gulf is the strongest origin point of tourists flocking to Lebanon, so there would be a market for a BEY-BAH-DOH or BEY-DMM-BAH route and triangle flights permit more frequencies.

I think we agree on most of the issues and the rest is just formalities on how to implement these growth strategies.

EurostarVA




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Photo © Ian Kirby





If there is a will, there is a way
User currently offlineCedarjet From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 8114 posts, RR: 53
Reply 21, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 2782 times:

I read quite a big article in the travel section of a British Sunday broadsheet that said Lebanon is enjoying massive increases in Arab tourism, that rich Gulf Arabs who used to spend the summer in the US are now going to Lebanon, because in the wake of 9/11 they're having trouble entering the US or being allowed in but interviewed / fingerprinted etc. Since Lebanon has been completely stable since 1991 and the Israeli occupation of the south ended a few years ago, it's returning to it's original role as the playground of the Middle East. The mountains above Beirut are very cool, perfect in fact, even in mid-summer (although Beirut, at sea level the base of the mountains, is a sweltering furnace of course). Some Lebanese friends of mine in Shemlan who used to live there before the war (sat it out in Brisbane Australia) and have now returned say that the quiet mountain towns (Aley et al) are now thriving entertainment meccas. I stayed with them for a few weeks in 2001 and one night they went to Broumanna and when they came back they looked stunned, one of them described it as 'complete madness' (but in a good way).

When I was there I was surprised at how much tourism came from Iran. Although most of the Iranian families I saw dragging their kids through the (astounding) caves near Jounieh probably arrived courtesy of an Iran Airtours (or similar) Tu154, rather than one of MEA's spiffy PTV-equipped luxury A321s.



fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
User currently offlineAirxliban From Lebanon, joined Oct 2003, 4512 posts, RR: 53
Reply 22, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 2762 times:

@7E7

Rene Mouawad Airport is more like a piece of tarmac.

It is certainly quite unusable at the present state, any idea what the details are on the plans to build a terminal?

I think it is significantly more pointless than the presence of Paphos. Not to say that Paphos is useless, but it clearly isn't indispensable.

Tripoli is really not that far from Beirut by road and the demand would be mostly VFR. I highly doubt it could support traffic from anywhere (except Beirut with Concordes twice daily and A380s on friday afternoons).

Still though, if another airfield is to be opened up in Lebanon, may it be anything but Halate.

Regards

Air Liban



PARIS, FRANCE...THE BEIRUT OF EUROPE.
User currently offline7E7 From Australia, joined Aug 2003, 159 posts, RR: 1
Reply 23, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days ago) and read 2733 times:

Airxliban, I somewhat agree with you.

But having another operational airport in Lebanon would certainly be a benefit for tourists and for locals. Don't forget some people have to travel 140km within Lebanon to get to BEY and vice versa.

All what I am suggesting is having a couple props going between BEY and KYE few times a day. Some of these flights could continue onwards to Cyprus, Northern Syria, Southern Turkey, Iraq.

Perhaps this may be the best time to setup such infrastructure so that in the future (hopefully within the next decade or so) a strong network would be well established. One point worth mentioning here is, people from the Syrian coast could also benefit from a nearby hub (no matter how small it is).



User currently offlineFLYSSC From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 7412 posts, RR: 57
Reply 24, posted (10 years 11 months 2 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 2680 times:

BA,
Air France doesn't fly anymore to Kuwait-City (KWI). The line was closed in 1997, it is planned to be re-opened next year, operated by A319LR in all business configuration (48 seats ).

MEA was used to fly from BEY to DAM, but only for "political" reasons, as DAM is less than 100 km from BEY, and there was only like 3 or 4 PAX on each flights !



By the way...I'll fly to BEY on ME210/AF564 (A321) sunday morning...if I can get on the flight as it is, as usual, fully booked


25 EurostarVA : FLYSSC, What is your source for the Air France service to KWI next year? Will it be operated by PrivatAir? I think it would be premature for the devel
26 FLYSSC : EurostarVA, The first 2 A319LR will be leased from ILFC and operated by Air France, with AF crew. They will be used to "Petroleum" destinations with h
27 Kamboi : I would've preferred MEA bought 757-300s instead of the A321 and 777-200 instead of th A330-200. This probably would've let the US lift the restrictio
28 AirxLiban : Kamboi, I highly doubt that buying US planes would have anything to do with lifting the sanctions. In any event, the pilots were already used to moder
29 Kamboi : AirxLiban, I agree about the color scheme. They should not go back to the old red and white, but be more stylish. I thought they could've borrowed fro
30 Post contains images FLYSSC : Kamboi, Maybe the 757-300 & 777-200 would have been better ...for POLITICAL reasons only... ( not even sure about that...) !!! because for MEA operati
31 Kamboi : FLYSSC Totally agree. Even a name chnage to an official AIR LIBAN would hearld a new era for the company with it's new planes plus of course new liver
32 CPH-R : As for the CPH service, wasn't it Snowflak that had the honour of flying that route? Or was it mainline? I can't remember, but if it was the former, I
33 OD720 : Wasn't the decision to buy Airbus was taken before even the US put the sanctions. As I remember, they considered the A310 and the B767 and chose the f
34 EurostarVA : I strongly disagree with all the talk of discontinuing the use of the MEA name. The MEA brand is known extensively around the world, pretty amazing fo
35 Pzurita1 : May be a naïve question: Why does ME and MS fly to KAN? I know little about Nigerian demoeconomics. What is there in Kano that Middle East airlines f
36 EurostarVA : Pzurita1, There is a large Lebanese community in Nigeria and other parts of West Africa such as Ivory Coast, Ghana and Liberia. They immigrated there
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