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How Responsive Are Airlines?  
User currently offlineOrd777 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 258 posts, RR: 0
Posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 2294 times:

Someone brought up the point that perhaps United is flying at 757 into EGE due to the Kobe Bryant trail and the subsequent increase in travel from media, etc - warranting a larger aircraft. This leads me to my question. How responsive are airlines to issues in the news (or other unexpected events or outside factors) that might affect their business? Would an airline really change its operations because of an anticipated increase in passengers. I know this is kind of a broad question, but I was just curious. Any input is appreciated.

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User currently offlineScootertrash From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 569 posts, RR: 8
Reply 1, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 2 days ago) and read 2262 times:

It isn't a broad question at all... I think it is rather to the point.

Generally, airlines have a somewhat limited ability to change equipment to match the potential loads. The more warning an airline would receive, the more likely that equipment could be changed to meet the need. For instance, every year US Airways might put additional wide-body capacity on CLT-JAX to meet the needs presented by the big golf tournament at TPC Sawgrass. Obviously they would know about this way in advance. Now, if tomorrow John Kerry were to get busted with a mistress in Burlington, Vermont, then it is unlikely that the airlines would be able to change equipment that quickly to meet the demands that the hordes of reporters might place on that route. (Relax Kerry fans... Its just an example)

Allot goes into fleet planning. Airlines try to plan this stuff out as far in advance as possible because the maintenance schedules are rather strict. If the airline has some operational spares, there may be more leeway. However, in this day and age of cutbacks, most of us aren't operating with many spares.


User currently offlineDstc47 From Ireland, joined Sep 1999, 1609 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 2209 times:

As others said, not very much and often for obvious reasons.

Yet every year American carriers do not increase frequency at all in the very busy days around Christmas. Even the year after 9/11, there was unmet demand at Christmas, while crews and aircraft were idle.

Many European carriers operate extra sections to meet the Christmas demand.

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