Luisde8cd From Pitcairn Islands, joined Aug 2004, 2522 posts, RR: 32 Reply 2, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 1857 times:
One of my best friends recently flew Santa Barbara to MIA and back. He said both flights were 95% full and that the service was excellent. He only complained about legroom since he flew coach. He said the seats were somewhat uncomfortable compared to AA. F/A's were nice, food was good enough and booze was served. Flights were on time, only the return flight was delayed due to traffic waiting for takeoff in MIA. He returned the day the Hurricane was near Miami.
Also Santa Barbara fares are the cheapest in the market. 240$ round trip including taxes vs Aeropostal's 290$ and AA's 330$. I really hope this route will speed up Santa Barbara's growth.
LatinPlane From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 2666 posts, RR: 14 Reply 4, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 1805 times:
I am somewhat amazed by SB Airlines operations. Their fares are ridiculously low between CCS and MIA. These fares were only intended as introductory fares, but have been extended for all the summer season. Does it mean that they weren’t selling as expected (?). I wonder what their plan is once the lighter months roll around. One thing is for sure, they are stealing a lot of AA’s traffic from MIA, which I suppose is part of their plan. We have to take into consideration that they are wet-leasing this 757 as they are not allowed to fly their own planes to the U.S. This must mean that this operation is probably more expensive than an operation that would be made if they flew their one planes by their own crew. Maybe they got a favorable deal?
I was also wondering about their flights between Cacaras and Santiago de Compostela. They advertised these special flights for the summer period, but to my knowledge they didn’t operate. Instead, Air Europa launched a once a week one-way service between Caracas and Stgo de Compostela on Saturdays. It’s not a dedicated flight, it’s the original CCS-MAD, but with a stop in Compostela. Instead, I think SB Airlines added a second flight between Caracas and Tenerife for the summer period.
On the South American subject of their operations, they are only flying to Quito now. They dropped Lima, then added Guayaquil, then dropped this destination and decided to just concentrate on Quito. This flight is very important to them as it feeds to their MAD service, given the large Ecuadorian community that exist in Spain and that tends to travel back and forth quite often.
I did read of their intentions on starting new operations to Portugal and Italy, covering over the open gap that Avensa left behind when it transferred its transatlantic operations to SB Airlines. I believe they intend on starting these flights next year.
I wonder what they intend on doing about their transatlantic flights in the future. They must be getting those two DC-10s leases at favorable terms, but they could do better using a fleet of 767s, which could work better for some of the routes they fly to Europe, or intend on flying one day. My belief is that since there exist a large pool of DC-10 spare pilots and used infrastructure leftover from VIASA’s and AVENSA’s DC-10 operations, allows for SB Airlines to draw upon these at very favorable prices, which allow them to offer low fares between South America and Europe.
Miaskies From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 1338 posts, RR: 1 Reply 6, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 1788 times:
Congratulations to Santa Barbara and Bienvenidos a Miami!
I think it's great to keep the low fare through out the Summer it gives the opportunity for many other people to fly to and from Venezuela.
Living in Miami and knowing MANY Venezuelans, it is said that AA passengers to and from Venezuela are usually the "higher end citizens" and business travelers that can afford the ticket prices. The only problem I see the national carriers of Venezuela facing is their aging aircraft and perhaps the possibility of AA declaring war @ CCS.
Santa Barbara offers a better option for Venezuelans wanting to come to the U.S. and flying a B752 is a great way to start...!
Poh2 From Venezuela, joined Oct 2003, 219 posts, RR: 0 Reply 7, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 1762 times:
I live in VLN (Valencia, Venezuela) and fly to MIA about 4 or 5 times a year. I used to fly VLN-MIA with VH, but stopped using them due to their old B727's, poor ground service, and continually late flights. In addition, my parents had a horrible experience with them on a flight from MIA to VLN when the B727 developed a crack in the cockpit window. The plane had just taken off, so it had to dump fuel and return to MIA. Apparently it was a horrific experience on the plane, as people were scared sh*tless and the cabin crew did little to calm the PAX down.
Since then, I've been flying AA. Sure, it's a pain to drive to CCS, but I feel a lot safer. Unfortunately, AA operates mostly their old B757's on the route with the old interior that does not feature the "More Room Throughout Coach" product. So, in the end, AA is not a huge improvement on VH in terms of the inflight product. In fact, VH has much better leg-room on their 727s than AA does on its 757s.
Therefore I think that it wouldn't be too difficult for Santa Barbara to take some PAX away from AA and VH if they offer a slightly better product at competitive prices. I am very interested in hearing what the SB interior is like on their 757s...any info on that? I believe the a/c is ex-TWA, has it retained that interior???
Venezuela747 From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 1413 posts, RR: 5 Reply 8, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 1746 times:
I live in Colorado and when we have to fly to Venezuela (PZO) we ussually take AA and have to pay around $700 or so. But my dad flew not too long ago on SB and DL for around $500. He said SB has been improving the service compared to when we flew SB CCS-MAD a while ago.
I read in a psot a while ago that AA was thinking about starting up VLN-MIA/SJU, just cross your finger. But I highly doubt it due to soem instability in the country with the whole Referendum and the Oposition calling it a fraud, I think what happened this weekened was a very low blow to a lot of Venezuelans.
Miaskies From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 1338 posts, RR: 1 Reply 9, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 1730 times:
Hola Chamos...Just an update:
AA was ready to go and start MIA-VLN from MIA w/ 738 but due to 911 it was post-poned and sent back to the vault. But don't lose your hope, recently it has been posted several times (thanks to our friend MAH...who always has the MIA/AA News) that AA has not forgotten MIA-VLN and hopes to launch sometime in 2005! Along with all the new routes taking off from MIA in 2005.
Asi que la idea de Valencia-Miami en AA no esta muy lejos chicos! Porlamar-MIA has also been talked about for AA and Porlamar-SJU on American Eagle. So from an aviation perspective, things are not looking bad in Venezuela...Just a matter of time!
MAH4546 From Sweden, joined Jan 2001, 31806 posts, RR: 72 Reply 10, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 1707 times:
Re: American Airlines/Valencia
If all goes as planned, Valencia will be American Airlines' next destination in South America. A daily 737-800 service is planned to launch either 2 March 2005 or 16 June 2005. This can change and nothing is set in stone, but it is penned in for a launch in the first half of 2005.
Luisde8cd From Pitcairn Islands, joined Aug 2004, 2522 posts, RR: 32 Reply 11, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 1647 times:
Comparing both Santa Barbara and Aeropostal, which one do you rate better in all senses Luisde8cd?
I'm referring to International routes
It's difficult to compare, but Aeropostal has a much larger international presence. SB focuses mainly in O&D pax to/from CCS and Quito. They don't offer too many domestic connections from/to CCS as Aeropostal does, so I think this is where Aeropostal is really winning. So in terms of size and number of destinations, Aeropostal is clearly the winner here. In terms of service Santa Barbara is the winner, as Poh2 said, Aeropostal offers a lower quality service that is hurting them, I really hope they can fix those problems.
I am somewhat amazed by SB Airlines operations. Their fares are ridiculously low between CCS and MIA. These fares were only intended as introductory fares, but have been extended for all the summer season. Does it mean that they weren’t selling as expected (?).
Santa Barbara is relatively unknown airline to most Venezuelans, at least here in CCS. For example when I asked my friend which airline was he flying to MIA, he replied: "coño una vaina rara ahi, Santa algo me da miedo" (something weird like Santa something, it scares me)
I laughed and replied: dude, they just recently started flying to MIA with a relatively new B757 that rolled off the factory in July 99. It's completely safe. Why did ur family pick Santa Barbara?
Friend: We always fly AA, but this time all AA were fully booked, so the travel agency suggested Santa Barbara and we had no choice.
In this case my friend flew Santa Barbara because he had no choice, so price difference wasn't really a big fact to consider when his family decided to fly them. But in my case if I were to fly to MIA, I will definitely fly Santa Barbara. Regretfully we Venezuelans use to associate national airlines with bad service/delays/lost luggage, etc. So many people prefer to fly either AA, DL, or CO to the US.
Chepos From Puerto Rico, joined Dec 2000, 6102 posts, RR: 11 Reply 14, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 1602 times:
Its odd no airline has a MIA-Porlamar flight, I remember in the Mid 90's when Aeropostal (I believe the second incarnation or maybe even the original) had flights between MIA and Porlamar as well as MCO-Porlamar-CCS. Back in the 80's SJU-Porlamar was flown by Aeropostal, actually Margaritas was a popular destination for Puerto Ricans in the 80's. Going back to the original topic on Santa Barbara- Im prety sure SB is going to be a sucess on the route, considering the amount of Venezuelans in Miami and the amount that travel back and fourth between the two- guarantees sucess on the route.
MAH4546 From Sweden, joined Jan 2001, 31806 posts, RR: 72 Reply 15, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 1571 times:
Its odd no airline has a MIA-Porlamar flight, I remember in the Mid 90's when Aeropostal (I believe the second incarnation or maybe even the original) had flights between MIA and Porlamar
Aeropostal actually flew MIA-PMV as recent as summer of 2002, twice a week. It was a year-round route canceled after September 2001. They did fly it for a short period between June and August 2002 as a seasonal service, but it never resumed, mainly because of the Venezuelan crisis. With Venezuela's situation improving, I wouldn't rule it out again for the future. The Caribbean coasts of South America are a popular vacation destination for Miamians and Puerto Ricans, though they seem to be the only Americans that know beautiful places like Cartagena and Porlamar exist.
Poh2 From Venezuela, joined Oct 2003, 219 posts, RR: 0 Reply 16, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 1569 times:
That is great news!!! I hope it works out and AA actually does launch the route. Even if they only were to fly 3-5 times a week that would be awesome. Oh, the thought of NOT having to drive the 2.5 hours to CCS...it would cut the overall trip time in half!!!
American Airlines, come on down...we're waiting for you!!!
Saludos desde Valencia a todos los venezolanos en airliners.net!
Miamix707 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 18, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 1547 times:
Luisde8cd: your friend is obviously clueless about airplanes and airlines. Santa Barbara is not a "new" airline in Venezuela. Im not sure if they have operated continuously all these years but they flew ATR 42s on regional routes years ago.. and they still do I believe.
Call me crazy but I remember in the early 90' their was an airline called "Air Margarita" that flew to Porlamar from MIA on a DC-10 or L1011 don't remember which. Anyone remeber that airline
DC10s and L1011s?? in full colors?? All I have seen was a DC-9-10 series on a slide taken at OPF, and most of what's there goes to get scrapped.
Luisde8cd From Pitcairn Islands, joined Aug 2004, 2522 posts, RR: 32 Reply 19, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 1531 times:
Oh, the thought of NOT having to drive the 2.5 hours to CCS...it would cut the overall trip time in half!!!
2.5 hrs to CCS? damn that's too much time. At what speed do you drive? 80km/hr? I usually make the same trip in 1.5hrs.
Luisde8cd: your friend is obviously clueless about airplanes and airlines. Santa Barbara is not a "new" airline in Venezuela. Im not sure if they have operated continuously all these years but they flew ATR 42s on regional routes years ago.. and they still do I believe
You are correct on both.
1) My friend is clueless about aviation
2) Santa Barbara ain't new. It began as an airline founded by some wealthy ranchers located in southern Zulia state near the town of Santa Barbara. Those ranchers wanted to get to Maracaibo (Zulia's capital) as fast as they could, so they got together and bought an ATR-42 for themselves. Then they said: hey why don't we fly pax while we aren't using it? Yeah that sounds good, we can make some money too!
And that's how it started. Its main hub was Maracaibo for a couple of years and recently switch to CCS when they added the DC10s and 727 to their fleet.
LX23 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2004, 347 posts, RR: 3 Reply 20, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1517 times:
Luis: I think he means 1.5 hours down to Caracas, and then the extra 45minutes-2 hours (depending on the traffic) to Maiquetia I remember having to get off at the Boqueron 1 once with my suitcases because the traffic simply wasn't moving hehe
Poh2 From Venezuela, joined Oct 2003, 219 posts, RR: 0 Reply 21, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1487 times:
As LX23 mentioned, I was talking about Valencia all the way to Maiquetia (La Guaira). And as traffic is always a HUGE pain when going through Caracas (especially in the early morning), I always have to calculate 2.5 hours for the trip. On some occasions it even takes 3 hours. The problem is that a huge traffic jam forms everyday on the highway entering Caracas at around 7:30 AM when all the commuters come into the city.
MAH4546 From Sweden, joined Jan 2001, 31806 posts, RR: 72 Reply 25, posted (9 years 4 months 4 days ago) and read 1439 times:
Just wondering, I think someone in this forums posted a link to SB's DOT application and it said that they would also start CCS-FLL-MIA. Any news on that?
Back in 2001, when they were first planning to launch service to South Florida, they were planning on going to Ft. Lauderdale instead of Miami. They were all set to launch around December 2001, which is also why AA announced FLL-CCS at that time. This time around, with Ft. Lauderdale already having service to Bogota and Caracas, they decided to go the safer way and fly to Miami. They have the route authority to fly FLL-CCS and FLL-MAR, but I wouldn't expect it any time soon.