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UA's IAD Hub Transformation Begins?  
User currently offlinePVD757 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3413 posts, RR: 16
Posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4144 times:

Just finished checking Feb. schedules for UA and noticed that all 4 daily PVD-IAD flights have been changed from ACA CRJ's to Trans States ERJ's. Not sure what other routes "waterski" will be taking over, but I noticed MHT-IAD is now 3 AWAC and only 1 ACA too.

25 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinePVD757 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3413 posts, RR: 16
Reply 1, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4120 times:

FYI: The new sked starts 2/12/04...

User currently offlineJohn From United States of America, joined Sep 1999, 1374 posts, RR: 5
Reply 2, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4102 times:

PVD757, which airline do you work for? I heard a MAJOR rumor about US Airways last night....don't know how true it is, what have you heard?

User currently offlinePVD757 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3413 posts, RR: 16
Reply 3, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4089 times:

No specific airline, work for the airport. There is definately something big going on, but I've only heard unspecific things. Someone from US PVD mx told me something about possible changing gates or something and I've heard some other rumors...What have you heard??

User currently offlineJohn From United States of America, joined Sep 1999, 1374 posts, RR: 5
Reply 4, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 3993 times:

Nothing about PVD specifically, but rumor has it that they may reactivate up to 60 airplanes parked in the desert. Good move as far as US's mainline fleet, however, I'm not so sure returning some 737-200s to the fleet would be a wise move. Keep your eyes open for an announcement from Crystal City, after the first of the year. Something BIG is about to happen, mark my words.

User currently offlineLuv2fly From United States of America, joined May 2003, 12110 posts, RR: 48
Reply 5, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 3889 times:
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Maybe do I dare to dream, MetroJet 2...... Or since the trend is the off beat type names, I'll go with Wanda. Think about it at one gate you have Ted, next to Ted is Wanda and just down a few gates is Song. What a sight. And best of all MetroJet 2 is back and David can prove he can make it work this time.


You can cut the irony with a knife
User currently offlinePVD757 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3413 posts, RR: 16
Reply 6, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 3861 times:

I must admit, I hadn't heard that, but these days, almost anything is possible. I wonder if anyone on here knows the status of some of USAiways' parked birds with respect to leases/ownership. I'm thinking that in order to cust costs, they could re-activate the -200 fleet (especially if they are mostly owned/payed off) and terminate a few leases on ones they are still paying on (the -400's since they seat about the same as thier 320's??). Who knows. I can't imagine that they would add a net of 60 planes to thier operating fleet, they have enough cost issues already!

User currently offlineLuv2fly From United States of America, joined May 2003, 12110 posts, RR: 48
Reply 7, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 3853 times:
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Maybe and I am being serious here, he as in US is going to do some of the connection flying in/at IAD for UA? Stranger things have happened....


You can cut the irony with a knife
User currently offlineProudtoflyaa From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 3805 times:

Trans States is already flying STL-ORD, STL-IAD, and I believe IAD to ALB.

User currently offlineAmpropilot2b From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 138 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 3760 times:

So, are all the UAX carriers using the A-gates? Who is doing the ground handling? ACA I suppose. It will be interesting to see how the transition goes as ACA heads out. I wonder if ACA will kick all the other UAX carriers out of thier gates as soon as they start flying as Indy, or if they will wait until they are completely finished as a UAX carrier.

User currently offlineRjpieces From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 3731 times:

I doubt US could make a MetroJet II work with 737-200s....I would expect newer 737s or maybe even some A32Xs.....

User currently offlinePVD757 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3413 posts, RR: 16
Reply 11, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 3677 times:

Talk about frankenstein. Those 732s would take so much money to get up and running again. Ever try to start an old car that hasn't run for a year?

User currently offlineStevenUhl777 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 3663 times:

UA can start by transforming IAD by renovating the C concourse...as much as I like flying into IAD, that place is in bad need of an update. Anyone's who been there during rush hour would probably agree with me that it resembles the inside of a sardine can! And what's with those windows? Hardly a good view out, and even then, it's usually obstructed. Not a spotter-friendly terminal, that's for sure.



User currently offlineSHUPirate1 From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3670 posts, RR: 16
Reply 13, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 3646 times:

Please, if US Airways wants to fly 737-200's, please keep them as mainline aircraft...last thing they need is to start MetroJet II...additionally, they would be smart to base those 732's at MCI, and have a nice east-west hub there...doesn't need more than about 150-200 flights per day, but if somebody wants to fly IND-LAX on US, now they have to go through PIT, which I'm sure they wouldn't do (and IND is, if I'm not mistaken, the largest outstation in the US Airways system), instead, flying through MCI would be a much more attractive option for them...


Burma's constitutional referendum options: A. Yes, B. Go to Insein Prison!
User currently offlineRjpieces From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 3592 times:

John...what do you expect to happen?

User currently offlineTLHFLA From United States of America, joined May 2003, 593 posts, RR: 1
Reply 15, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 3514 times:

SHUPirate1, one major problem with MCI as a hub is the way security is set-up. From other discussions, it appears that MCI has security set up at each cluster of gates because of its design. This would be a nightmare for passengers trying to connect as they would have to leave and re-enter security to make their connection. I agree that it would be more convenient for folks east of their hubs to have a place in the midwest to connect for flights out west.


Bill in ATL
User currently offlineJohn From United States of America, joined Sep 1999, 1374 posts, RR: 5
Reply 16, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 3491 times:

At this point I'm not going to speculate on the IFs or the WHATs, but I will say that US must come up with an aggressive and effective business plan to compete with the LCC competition that is becoming ever so prevelant in their own back yard. PHL in particular, is the 'cash cow' for US Airways and they must do everything in their power to protect it.

User currently offlineSHUPirate1 From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3670 posts, RR: 16
Reply 17, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 3488 times:

TLHFLA-Why couldn't they bus passengers between gates inside of security, like they do at PHL?


Burma's constitutional referendum options: A. Yes, B. Go to Insein Prison!
User currently offlineProudtoflyaa From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day ago) and read 3461 times:

TLHFLA-Why couldn't they bus passengers between gates inside of security, like they do at PHL?

It would have to be quite an elaborate system... in the renovated terminals, still every set of three or four gates has its own security checkpoint and none are connected to other sets of gates (separated by baggage claims and ticketing). In the un-renovated areas, every one or two gates has its own security checkpoint.


User currently offlineSHUPirate1 From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3670 posts, RR: 16
Reply 19, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day ago) and read 3413 times:

Proud-YIKES!?!?! Who came up with an idea like that?!?!? Certainly not a Rhodes Scholar? Anyway, in that case, why don't they do what I have seen done at some smaller airports (AGS comes to mind), and not allow passengers to go to the secure area until the plane is ready to board, that way, there would be seemingly less pressure to get to the gates early...(then again, maybe that's just my fouled-up thinking)


Burma's constitutional referendum options: A. Yes, B. Go to Insein Prison!
User currently offlineProudtoflyaa From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 1 day ago) and read 3366 times:

All of the concessions (and restrooms) are outside of security at MCI. I was there last in October flying on American, and they are moved into new gates but no restrooms or anything in the secure area. A new Admirals Club is being constructed inside of security, but not quite finished (opening in January apparently.... the temporary club is literally in somebody's office). It is a brilliant idea for an airport where all the traffic is O & D. It was not built with a hub operation in mind, simply. If you are departing on a flight out of MCI, the ticket counter is right next to the gate entrance. If you are arriving, you step off the plane and 50 feet away is the baggage claim, another 25 feet and you're on curbside. The renovations are widening the terminal on the ramp side to allow larger holdrooms.

User currently offlineN628AU From United States of America, joined Oct 2000, 343 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 23 hours ago) and read 3313 times:

US is not planning on reactivating any aircraft. The 60 aircraft rumor would be 60 new (probably Airbus) aircraft to be added over the next two years. Any additional aircraft would be tied to productivity and workrule changes that the employees (especially maintenance with the outsourcing issue still in court) would be very reluctant to take. COB David Bronner wants the traditional hub and spoke operation to get down to an 8.5 cent CASM, with a point to point CASM of 6 cents aimed at fighting the LCCs.

User currently offlineFlashmeister From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 2900 posts, RR: 6
Reply 22, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 19 hours ago) and read 3152 times:
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US is in no danger anytime soon of having a 8.5 or even 6.0 CASM, and even if they did, it would still spell disaster for the carrier. Bronner and Siegel are delusional if they think that low CASM is the only way to the promised land of profits. Here's why:

First off, US' 2003 Q3 CASM was 0.11. That would mean that US has to cut costs another 29% or so. Siegel and Bronner will most likely look to work rules and pay changes, and when you have labor that is demoralized and angry, you can't go back to the well again. And, if you do, what are the odds of a swamped US Gate Agent smiling when he/she realizes that they get 20%-30% less for that smile than they did a year ago? And, what if that lack of smile is presented to a FF elite customer who is already angry about being in an airport? Sounds like a good way to preserve the quality of the product, which is already pathetic.

Second, labor can't do it all. US has an expensive infrastructure -- lots of gates at some of the premier airports in the Northeast, where the LCCs are either going into secondary airports or serving nearby cities. Granted, when you serve a prime destination and your competition goes elsewhere, you can charge a premium. The problem is that the cost will always be more than the premium US can charge, especially if people still continue to not mind driving a couple of hours to save money. Illustrated: It costs US say 30% more to be at DCA, but they can only charge 25% more than WN could on a market from BWI, since people are willing to drive out to BWI for the flight. That means that the US model on that route is upside-down. So, US has to abandon the premier airports or jack up the fares, both of which are incompatible with US' business strategy.

Third, COGS: US depends on corporate sales more than other carriers. They still pay commissions or give companies spiffs for travel contracts. In 2003 Q3, the selling costs for US were almost 6% in terms of revenue. For WN and other LCCs, that's commonly under 1%. US is in a catch-22... they can't cut this cost because it's needed to feed their addiction to corporate customers.

Fourth, fuel and stage length: It costs fuel to take off and land. US traditionally has had relatively short stage lengths, which make them less 'efficient' when it comes to fuel, and makes fuel price management even more important. US is not hedged for fuel prices as well as it should be. As a result, again in Q3, US and WN spent about the same on fuel, but WN was able to fly 22% more RPMs on that gas. This cost won't change unless US dramatically changes its route structure, gets some serious hedging in place (which will be hard considering their credit), or comes up with a way to fly on one engine.

Fifth, labor productivity. US' reliance on hub-and-spoke (especially with hubs so close together) makes people inherently less productive. It's feast or famine... totally swamped or standing around. If you stagger that hub 'pulse', similar to what AA is trying with their rolling hub concept, you have a more consistent demand for work that is matched with your capacity. You can do more with the same or fewer people, and you can maximize the amount of time that your planes are in the air and making money. US is not warm to the rolling hub concept.

So... in conclusion - Bronner and Siegel can chase the CASM CASM CASM dream all they want. And, if US ever gets to 8.5 (which won't happen anyway), they'll still be in trouble because they'll be even more upside-down than they are today.

US and Siegel, who were roundly congratulated for their Chapter 11 stint, are the gleaming example of what NOT to do in bankruptcy. All they did was rearrange the chairs on the deck of the Titanic. They didn't take the court-protection opportunity and have a hard look at the way they do business with an eye on the future... they piddled the time away and went back to the same game they lost before.


User currently offlinePVD757 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3413 posts, RR: 16
Reply 23, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 5 hours ago) and read 2997 times:

Has anyone seen the Trans States ERJ's yet, how do they look in UA colors?

User currently offlineLastBaron From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 290 posts, RR: 2
Reply 24, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 4 hours ago) and read 2948 times:

Keep your eyes open for an announcement from Crystal City, after the first of the year. Something BIG is about to happen, mark my words.

Can hardly wait! Will they come clean and finally announce the have to suspend all service, that they are going belly-up as long predicted? Or will it be that the UA-US merger talks are back on and this time going to lead to consummation?  Laugh out loud That would be a riot... the new carrier would only survive another 6 months!

Maybe it's that they are selling out to WN!?!  Laugh out loud

User currently offlineProudtoflyaa From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 25, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 3 hours ago) and read 2912 times:

Has anyone seen the Trans States ERJ's yet, how do they look in UA colors?

Yes, I have at the Trans States hangar at STL. They look just like they did in UA colors the first time around.


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