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British Airways / WestJet In Prelim. Talks  
User currently offlineJBLUA320 From United States of America, joined May 2002, 3179 posts, RR: 19
Posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 5 days ago) and read 6403 times:
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Hey all...

CALGARY, Alberta, Dec 14 (Reuters) - British Airways Plc (BAY.L: Quote, Profile , Research) would welcome an alliance with low-cost Canadian carrier WestJet Airlines Ltd. (WJA.TO: Quote, Profile , Research) now that it has beefed up service between London Heathrow and Canada, its chief executive said on Thursday.

Full article: http://yahoo.reuters.com/news/articl...48_N14310775&type=comktNews&rpc=44

JBLU

31 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineVonRichtofen From Canada, joined Nov 2000, 4627 posts, RR: 36
Reply 1, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 6256 times:

I wonder what BA will demand from WS. I think WS would have to do something if they expect a partnership with a premium airline like BA. Somebody going to fly in First class to YYC on BA and then board on a WS flight by sock colour?  Yeah sure


Word
User currently offlineSketty222 From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2006, 1778 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 6168 times:

I think this is something and nothing. I cant see BA making partership with a LCC because like Vonrichtofen states, people wont want to fly Premium with BA and then transfer to a LCC.

Lee



There's flying and then there's flying
User currently offlineJBLUA320 From United States of America, joined May 2002, 3179 posts, RR: 19
Reply 3, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 6102 times:
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On the flip side, though, who else can BA partner with that has enough of a network around Canada including a premium product? I can't imagine a BA partnership with AC would sit well with the other Star and Oneworld carriers.

JBLU


User currently offlineSketty222 From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2006, 1778 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 6097 times:

Quoting JBLUA320 (Reply 3):
On the flip side, though, who else can BA partner with that has enough of a network around Canada including a premium product? I can't imagine a BA partnership with AC would sit well with the other Star and Oneworld carriers.

Good point!
I think that Westjet may have to offer more than they do now before they can codeshare/partner-up with BA
BA are one of the best if not the BEST premium carrier in Europe and they need to make good decisions about who they want their Premium travellers to connect with. I completely agreethat a partnership is not going to happen with AC so Westjet may be an option if they can produce the goods.

Lee



There's flying and then there's flying
User currently offlineJacobin777 From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 14968 posts, RR: 60
Reply 5, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 5995 times:

I would like to see AA partner with WS also...its not as if there are a lot of carriers in Canada which has as extensive of a route network as either WS or AC...


"Up the Irons!"
User currently offlineACDC8 From Canada, joined Mar 2005, 7642 posts, RR: 35
Reply 6, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 5964 times:

Even though there have been rumours of BA and WS for some time now, one can't help but wonder if this is why BA has started service to YYC. Seems logical, WS's YYC base has an extensive network and a code-share agreement between the two would be fantastic for those of us who take connecting flights to YVR or YYC and then fly Trans-Atlantic on a regular basis. However, as in the posts above, would WS need a premium cabin? I could understand that some premium paying passengers don't enjoy going from a premium cabin into a econo cabin. But, AC is no different if I am flying AC mainline and then onto Jazz.


A Grumpy German Is A Sauerkraut
User currently offlineYYCowboy From Canada, joined Aug 2006, 147 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 5778 times:

Why do you people figgure premium customers rule the world? They are gravy and high maintanance. Have any of you armchair critics ever boarded a West Jet flight? You make it sound like its trash. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figgure if a BA passanger wants to get to Regina, or Winnipeg, or Kelowna, it is at MOST, a 2 hour commute from any of BA's Canadian ports of entry. West Jet offers the most modern aircraft, nice leather seats with TV and ample leg room, it IS a premium LCC. Try and think beyond Canadas major cities, not everyones final destination. What kind of premium product does Air Canada offer on Dash 8's or CRJ's, because thats the other choice. I think any kind of aliance between West Jet and British Airways is a stroke of genious, and is a win win situation for the airlines and passangers alike.

My 2 cents worth.



Its hard to soar like an eagle when you're flying with turkeys
User currently offlineVonRichtofen From Canada, joined Nov 2000, 4627 posts, RR: 36
Reply 8, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 5756 times:

Quoting YYCowboy (Reply 7):
Why do you people figgure premium customers rule the world? They are gravy and high maintanance.

They are high yield passengers. They usually pay 5 times more than economy pax. They get the best service because they pay for it. Premium pax are the airlines bread and butter, not economy pax.

Quoting YYCowboy (Reply 7):
Have any of you armchair critics ever boarded a West Jet flight?



Yes I have, probably more than a dozen. I'm not saying they're trash, I'm saying that a Premium passenger, especially one coming from a World renowned airline like BA expects more than a bubbly smile and a leather seat.

Quoting YYCowboy (Reply 7):
What kind of premium product does Air Canada offer on Dash 8's or CRJ's, because thats the other choice.

Well most cities that Jazz flies Dash 8's to WS doesn't even serve....
Also, the CRJ-705's which do YWG, Comox, YXX and some YVR runs have a premium cabin and have AVOD systems in place.

Let's not forget Lounges, priority bag handling etc. etc. These are all things Premiums customers demand (and rightfully so).

Quoting Sketty222 (Reply 4):
I completely agreethat a partnership is not going to happen with AC so Westjet may be an option if they can produce the goods.

Full on partnership with AC... No, but there already is an interline agreement in place. AC interlines passengers on the new BA flight from YYC-LHR and BA does the same for pax connecting from the LHR-YYC leg. This is something WS can't even do yet because their reservation system doesn't allow it (for now anyway, obviously this will probably change).

Kris



Word
User currently offlineACDC8 From Canada, joined Mar 2005, 7642 posts, RR: 35
Reply 9, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 5704 times:

Quoting YYCowboy (Reply 7):
Have any of you armchair critics ever boarded a West Jet flight?

I've been flying them frequently since 1996.

Quoting YYCowboy (Reply 7):
You make it sound like its trash

Who's making it sound like trash? I for one, think they have a great product.

Quoting YYCowboy (Reply 7):
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figgure if a BA passanger wants to get to Regina, or Winnipeg, or Kelowna, it is at MOST, a 2 hour commute from any of BA's Canadian ports of entry.

True, but there are many pax who want more then what WS (or Jazz for that matter) offer. Especially travellers from Europe think differently then us Canadians. I've spent have of my life living here and half in Germany, German companies and many travellers are willing to shell out more €'s for a premium cabin, even for a 1 hour domestic flight.

Quoting YYCowboy (Reply 7):
West Jet offers the most modern aircraft, nice leather seats with TV and ample leg room, it IS a premium LCC.

This is not enough for many travellers, as VonRichtofen has pointed out.

Quoting YYCowboy (Reply 7):
Try and think beyond Canadas major cities, not everyones final destination. What kind of premium product does Air Canada offer on Dash 8's or CRJ's, because thats the other choice.

Unfortunatly, they don't offer anything else either.

Quoting YYCowboy (Reply 7):
I think any kind of aliance between West Jet and British Airways is a stroke of genious, and is a win win situation for the airlines and passangers alike.

I agree. But I think WS does need to offer more before it happens. Only time will tell.

Now, I just hope that KL gets there act together and finds a Canadian partner.  Smile



A Grumpy German Is A Sauerkraut
User currently offlineVonRichtofen From Canada, joined Nov 2000, 4627 posts, RR: 36
Reply 10, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 5667 times:

Quoting ACDC8 (Reply 9):
True, but there are many pax who want more then what WS (or Jazz for that matter) offer.

Don't forget many cities Jazz serves from YYC have CRJ-705's operating the flights. The 705 has a J class cabin as well as AVOD system in every seat. So it's not only the larger cities that have the J class option.


Kris



Word
User currently offlineACDC8 From Canada, joined Mar 2005, 7642 posts, RR: 35
Reply 11, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 5627 times:

Quoting VonRichtofen (Reply 10):
The 705 has a J class cabin as well as AVOD system in every seat. So it's not only the larger cities that have the J class option

True. My post was more in regards to cities such as YLW, YKA and Northern
Alberta.



A Grumpy German Is A Sauerkraut
User currently offlineYYCowboy From Canada, joined Aug 2006, 147 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 5426 times:

Quoting ACDC8 (Reply 9):
Now, I just hope that KL gets there act together and finds a Canadian partner

Yup, I agree. Maybe West Jet can establish itself as a feeder airline for a wide variety of international carriers, without being exclusive to any one. It just might be a market they can expand on and entice many carriers to look at YYC or YEG for that matter.

Thanks for all the sensible responses to my comments. I'm only trying to be realistic about what, is, can, and should be available for international travellers.

I'm a fan of both our National carriers



Its hard to soar like an eagle when you're flying with turkeys
User currently offlineMilan320 From Canada, joined Jan 2005, 869 posts, RR: 11
Reply 13, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 5326 times:

Quoting VonRichtofen (Reply 1):
I wonder what BA will demand from WS.

I hope BA demand the the WS Cabin crew stop that song-and-dance routine of theirs. Embarassing to say the least.

/Milan320



I accept bribes ... :-)
User currently offlineJBLUA320 From United States of America, joined May 2002, 3179 posts, RR: 19
Reply 14, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 5300 times:
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Quoting Milan320 (Reply 13):
I hope BA demand the the WS Cabin crew stop that song-and-dance routine of theirs

That's part of the product WS is known for, and many passengers enjoy. Same with WN in the USA. It'd be unrealistic for BA to deman that to stop, I think... you can change or upgrade the product, but a change like stopping the "sing and dance" routine is changing the corporate culture... something WS management has worked tireless to cultivate.

JBLU


User currently offlineVonRichtofen From Canada, joined Nov 2000, 4627 posts, RR: 36
Reply 15, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 4 days ago) and read 5208 times:

Quoting JBLUA320 (Reply 14):
That's part of the product WS is known for, and many passengers enjoy. Same with WN in the USA. It'd be unrealistic for BA to deman that to stop, I think...

While I agree their "song and dance" works well for them currently, but with a partnership with BA they will be getting some more discerning pax. Joe Schmoes who fly once a year to visit grandma in Saskatoon may enjoy it, but passengers from Europe, especially business passengers would probably rather do without the Disney Land routine.


Kris



Word
User currently offlineTymnBalewne From Bermuda, joined Mar 2005, 947 posts, RR: 1
Reply 16, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 5038 times:

WS and BA spoke prior to the BA YYC start-up at fairly high levels. It will be interesting to see what's going to happen.


Dewmanair...begins with Dew
User currently offlineJBLUA320 From United States of America, joined May 2002, 3179 posts, RR: 19
Reply 17, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 4958 times:
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Quoting VonRichtofen (Reply 15):
Joe Schmoes who fly once a year to visit grandma in Saskatoon

Sounds a bit generalized... I'm not attacking you, I'm just saying... Airlines like WestJet manage to board a tremendous amount of high-class passengers and names, similar to jetBlue in the US. Cheap doesn't mean unclassy!

JBLU


User currently offlineKanebear From United States of America, joined May 2002, 953 posts, RR: 1
Reply 18, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 4760 times:

HP ain't exactly a palace of the sky and BA were tied up with them for quite some time. IMO the ability to get someplace conveniently is going to outweigh the 'premium' argument.

If it's that big a deal, WS can always install Eurobiz seats and on important codeshare routes can offer a quasi-J service... or even not change the seating at all, simply block the middle seat on the first few rows and offer free drinkies.

Remember that almost all intra-Europe flights DO NOT have different seating up front so if anything, WS will be closer to what folks who fly BA are used to from a physical product standpoint. The only thing WS would really need are a few strategically placed lounges at key airports. IMO that's NOT a big deal and potentially another revenue enhancer as they can sell memberships a-la AA's Admiral's Club/UA's RCC/DL's CRC, etc.


User currently offlineJBLUA320 From United States of America, joined May 2002, 3179 posts, RR: 19
Reply 19, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 4675 times:
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Quoting Kanebear (Reply 18):
Remember that almost all intra-Europe flights DO NOT have different seating up front so if anything, WS will be closer to what folks who fly BA are used to from a physical product standpoint.

Great point about the seating arrangement. Also, I believe WestJet now has an agreement with certain airports to let passengers buy lounge access.

JBLU


User currently offlineThreepoint From Canada, joined Oct 2005, 2130 posts, RR: 9
Reply 20, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 4649 times:

Quoting Kanebear (Reply 18):
or even not change the seating at all, simply block the middle seat on the first few rows and offer free drinkies.



Quoting JBLUA320 (Reply 19):
Great point about the seating arrangement

You know, I can imagine some ruffled feathers from the average Westjet passenger if they are told a flight is 'full' when in fact there are a few empty middle seats in the first rows. I can imagine the indignation when a perfectly good seat is going unoccupied just because somebody paid a bit more to have more elbow room: "Yes Mrs Smith, I know you have to get to your family reunion/son's graduation/sick mother's bedside but this is Gerard Willoughby-Smythe IV and he did pay 3000 pounds first-class from London don't you know". In Calgary, no more import is granted to an investment banker from the City than to a ranchhand from Okotoks, and WS customer service agents will have their work cut out for them explaining to Mrs Smith why she can't plunk herself down between the people in seats 2A and 2C.



The nice thing about a mistake is the pleasure it gives others.
User currently offlineYyz717 From Canada, joined Sep 2001, 16248 posts, RR: 56
Reply 21, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 4528 times:

Westjet can only gain from being in an alliance with BA, AA, CX etc. The ability to feed these carriers from the Westjet "hubs" at YVR, YYC and YYZ will add additional growth to Westjet, which is already growing revenue at several times the rate of AC year-over-year.

The rather snide previous comments about Westjet service should be ignored. As a regular flyer with AC and WS in economy (where 90%+ of travellers are), both services are similar with a slight edge to WS due to friendlier crew, leather seats and liveTV. I am an employee of neither carrier so I have no axe to grind.

OneWorld members will have no problem with the already-high service standards of WS. The lack of a premium cabin is a minor point, and largely a non-issue. A BA premium cabin passenger arriving in YYC and connecting on WS to YEG, YVR, YXX, YLW, YXE or anywhere will experience great service by Canadians actually based in Western Canada -- I can't think of a better welcome to Western Canada.

A OneWorld membership by WS will also possibly result in more AA and BA service to Canada, which can only benefit Canadians.



Panam, TWA, Ansett, Eastern.......AC next? Might be good for Canada.
User currently offlineA332 From Canada, joined Feb 2005, 1644 posts, RR: 2
Reply 22, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 4504 times:

Quoting Yyz717 (Reply 21):
Westjet can only gain from being in an alliance with BA, AA, CX etc. The ability to feed these carriers from the Westjet "hubs" at YVR, YYC and YYZ will add additional growth to Westjet, which is already growing revenue at several times the rate of AC year-over-year.

Exactly, WS is at the point where it is critical they establish a strong alliance with a large carrier in order to futher growth and expansion opportunities. Canada does not provide WS the size of market WN enjoys in the USA, this is a crucial step.

Quoting Yyz717 (Reply 21):
The rather snide previous comments about Westjet service should be ignored.

Agreed, but what else would you expect on this board? It's always AC or nothing... forgetting that domestically WS offers a similar if not better experience.

Quoting Yyz717 (Reply 21):
OneWorld members will have no problem with the already-high service standards of WS. The lack of a premium cabin is a minor point, and largely a non-issue.

Exactly! This is hardly a reactive approach. People need to understand that high-level discussions such as these don't just magically happen for no reason. BA already sees a WS partnership as a huge opportunity to further their interests in the Canadian market. All these cheap shots are garbage statements with no substance or value.



Bad spellers of the world... UNTIE!
User currently offlineThreepoint From Canada, joined Oct 2005, 2130 posts, RR: 9
Reply 23, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 4414 times:

Quoting Yyz717 (Reply 21):
both services are similar with a slight edge to WS due to friendlier crew, leather seats and liveTV



Quoting A332 (Reply 22):
forgetting that domestically WS offers a similar if not better experience.

Like you, I have spent more time than I care to admit as a passenger on both carriers. I find the level of service almost identical. The crew is no more or less friendly, competent or well-presented at either airline. I and many others prefer cloth over leather seats, especially in the summer and I think most passengers will find that AC's new AVOD will make the erratic Live TV pale in comparison.

Quoting A332 (Reply 22):
what else would you expect on this board? It's always AC or nothing

I invite you to do some cursory searches on this forum where you will find that there are as many WS proponents as there are AC fans.

Quoting Yyz717 (Reply 21):
A BA premium cabin passenger arriving in YYC and connecting on WS to YEG, YVR, YXX, YLW, YXE or anywhere will experience great service by Canadians actually based in Western Canada -- I can't think of a better welcome to Western Canada.

If you substitute 'AC Jazz' for 'WS' in that comment, it would be equally valid.

Quoting Yyz717 (Reply 21):
A OneWorld membership by WS will also possibly result in more AA and BA service to Canada, which can only benefit Canadians.

Agreed, but as queried before, I wonder how that would force Westjet to deviate from their current successful LCC model. OneWorld would come with significant costs and I imagine many restrictions. Would a partnership with BA allow WS to fly to the UK (esp. LHR) if they do go through with the oft-rumoured transatlantic 737-700 flights?

Quoting A332 (Reply 22):
All these cheap shots are garbage statements with no substance or value.

I didn't read any cheap shots. Some posters commented that a premium European passenger may not appreciate the service difference between BA First or Business and Westjet's less rigid (some would say anything goes) approach. Nobody belittled Westjet, but made simple (and true) observations.



The nice thing about a mistake is the pleasure it gives others.
User currently offlineSwissy From Switzerland, joined Jan 2005, 1734 posts, RR: 4
Reply 24, posted (7 years 8 months 1 week 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 4270 times:

Quoting A332 (Reply 22):
Canada does not provide WS the size of market WN enjoys in the USA, this is a crucial step.

Agree 100%

Quoting Yyz717 (Reply 21):
Westjet can only gain from being in an alliance with BA, AA, CX etc. The ability to feed these carriers from the Westjet "hubs" at YVR, YYC and YYZ will add additional growth to Westjet, which is already growing revenue at several times the rate of AC year-over-year.

I hope so since they are only in business since 96....so it is not relevant

Quoting Yyz717 (Reply 21):
The rather snide previous comments about Westjet service should be ignored. As a regular flyer with AC and WS in economy (where 90%+ of travellers are), both services are similar with a slight edge to WS due to friendlier crew, leather seats and liveTV. I am an employee of neither carrier so I have no axe to grind.

Me too and I prefer AC over WS if flights are longer than 90min.....

A "feeder" status would cost WS too much money, I think WS has come to a point were they have to make a decision, stick with what you have or go bigger & international with 737/T7 and be a strong partner in a alliance and the sky will be the limit.......

Cheers,


25 Threepoint : I concur. There is room for a bit more North American growth, but it will be very interesting to see what happens 1, 2, 5 or 10 years hence. Makes yo
26 Yyz717 : WS has 63 73G's in service. With only 14 more on order for 2007-2009. Granted more are likely to be ordered for 2008 and 2009 delivery. Given WS's pr
27 Threepoint : Common growth rates for a decade-old carrier filling a large void left by CP, but 20% I think we can all agree is unsustainable. I think we've hashed
28 Swissy : Would be hard to do with one AC type only...... Agree 100% and that is why I believe the time has come for WS to find a partner and grow internationa
29 Yyz717 : The 20% YOY growth HAS BEEN sustained. There is no reason it will suddenly collapse to 5%. Clearly, WS is growing the market, similar to WN in the US
30 WildcatYXU : I wouldn't call WS exactly cheap... I happened to shell out some $ 980 (including taxes) for an YYZ-YYC RT flight. It was in April 2004, when WS had
31 Sebring : The E190 costs 24% less per block hour for AC than one of its A320s, so it stands to reason that it is competitive on block hour cost with a WS 737 -
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