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WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?  
User currently offlineAeroMaxx From United States of America, joined May 2006, 71 posts, RR: 0
Posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 5027 times:

I am wondering why WN does not offer flights from SEA and PDX to its major stations in Southern California such as LAX and SAN. They offer LAS and PHX nonstop from the Pacific NW. Is there any major reason that WN is staying away from this market?

28 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineSrbmod From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 4982 times:



Quoting AeroMaxx (Thread starter):
Is there any major reason that WN is staying away from this market?

I'm guessing the airline with an Eskimo on the tail has something to do with this, at least on the PDX-SAN-PDX and SEA-SAN-SEA route, as the PDX-LAX-PDX route has AS, QX, UA, and XE (Total of 13 flights) while the SEA-LAX-SEA route has AS, UA, and EX (With a total of 18 flights a day on the route).


User currently offlineCopaair737 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 4971 times:

I think they run a lot of their north-south traffic via their stations in Northern California.
Stops in OAK, SJC, and SMF, to feed the enormous amounts of flights between NorCal and SoCal.


User currently offlineOzarkD9S From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 5231 posts, RR: 21
Reply 3, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 4943 times:

Gates and in the case of SNA, slots are a major issue at SoCal airports for WN (and everyone else as well). The SoCal-Pacific NW is well served and WN probably isn't going to make a play for SEA and PDX from BUR/LAX/SNA when those resources would be better utilized on intra-Cali/LAS/PHX/MDW and the various monopoloy markets WN has. If Wn were miraculously able to squeeze another 30 flights a day out of their LAX facilities, they might give it a go.

WN has also had some issues with SEA, as their well documented battle to move to BFI.



The best IFE: A window seat and a good book.
User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26810 posts, RR: 75
Reply 4, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 4773 times:



Quoting Copaair737 (Reply 2):
I think they run a lot of their north-south traffic via their stations in Northern California.
Stops in OAK, SJC, and SMF, to feed the enormous amounts of flights between NorCal and SoCal.

This is absolutely true. Further, some people will even run through LAS. I have friends in Seattle who are so loyal to WN, they always do the connection or 1 stop down to L.A., as it gives them the BUR option as well.

Quoting OzarkD9S (Reply 3):
Gates and in the case of SNA, slots are a major issue at SoCal airports for WN (and everyone else as well).

There are only 2 airports in Southern California with slot controls, SNA and LGB, the latter of which WN does not serve. Now, WN does have pretty well known gate space issues at LAX that should have been sorted long ago with a brokered deal to get US/HP to move in with United.

Quoting OzarkD9S (Reply 3):

WN has also had some issues with SEA, as their well documented battle to move to BFI.

I think this has a lot to do with it.



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
User currently offlineEghansen From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 4600 times:

WN has always had a long history of not flying in direct competition with other airlines wherever possible.

The only routes WN flys out of SAN in direct competition with the majors is SAN-SFO, SAN-PHX, SAN-LAS and they just reinstated the SFO route after a multi-year hiatus.

WN loves to fly routes majors do not fly, for example, we have non-stop SAN to ELP, TUS, SMF, RNO, OAK, ABQ, AUS, HOU, BNA, MCI, MDW. On all these routes WN is the only operator. In addition, they often fly these routes with substantial frequency, such as SAN-SMF with something like 10 flights per day.

WN has always been a very elusive airline regarding direct competition.


User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26810 posts, RR: 75
Reply 6, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4539 times:



Quoting Eghansen (Reply 5):
WN has always had a long history of not flying in direct competition with other airlines wherever possible.

Nearly every route WN flies out of LAX has competition.



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
User currently offlineSuper80DFW From United States of America, joined Oct 2007, 1697 posts, RR: 11
Reply 7, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4520 times:

Its because of Alaska Airlines. They fly all over the west coast.


"Things change, friends leave, life doesn't stop for anybody." -- EAT'EM UP EAT'EM UP KSU!!
User currently offlineRoseFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 9817 posts, RR: 52
Reply 8, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4486 times:

I'd like to say it was because of Alaska, but WN and AS compete heavily to the Bay Area from SEA and PDX.

WN has stayed out of the SEA/PDX-Socal market and AS has mostly stayed out of the Northern California to Socal routes. The two airlines seem to leave each other alone.



If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
User currently offlineSANFan From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 5603 posts, RR: 12
Reply 9, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4480 times:



Quoting Eghansen (Reply 5):
The only routes WN flys out of SAN in direct competition with the majors is SAN-SFO, SAN-PHX, SAN-LAS and they just reinstated the SFO route after a multi-year hiatus.

Plus SJC, DEN, coming in April, and a good possibility of SLC expanding from Saturday-only (that starts in March); multi-airport cities such as Houston, Chicago, and Baltimore/Washington could be argued as competitive market routes but there is no question that WN likes finding and developing un-served routes, with SAN being a prime example.

Quoting OzarkD9S (Reply 3):
If Wn were miraculously able to squeeze another 30 flights a day out of their LAX facilities, they might give it a go.

SAN is in exactly the same situation as LAX and I agree with those saying that if gates were more plentiful at any So Cal airport (other than ONT where WN still has room to expand), we might very well see n/s flights to the Northwest.

One last point: don't forget that WN is very tight with things at SEA due to the high costs there; I don't think WN would be likely to suddenly add 10-15 flights to LAX, SAN, BUR and ONT even if AS suddenly disappeared tomorrow.

bb


User currently offlineMason From United States of America, joined Jun 1999, 749 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 4400 times:

I used to think that WN wanted to avoid direct competition out of SEA at all costs, but after starting the SEA-DEN route (served by UA, AS, and F9), I am rethinking this hypothesis. I think the introduction of a WN product into several key (and previously thought to be un-penetrable) markets in the last few years went against everyone's opinion of what WN was.

WN can now be found in the UA/F9 fortress that is DEN, and two other UA hubs (SFO and IAD). WN is also flying to DTW and PHL (huge hub airports for NW and US, respectively).

I think it is safe to say that WN defines a market wherever it goes, perhaps attracting people who have never flown before, taking little away from the resident carriers. This is what I like to call the Costco effect. Costco members usually assume that "If I can find it at Costco, it must be a better deal than at the supermarket." While this is the case sometimes, it is never always true. Many loyal WN customers never check other carrier's prices, and would never think to do so, always assuming that the WN fare will be the cheapest. Again, while this is true sometimes, it is often the case that a cheaper fare is available on a "legacy".

Having said all that, I think WN would be wise to begin service from SEA/PDX to LAX, and perhaps to BUR. I agree that getting into SNA and SAN may have slot issues, but there is certainly money to be made by WN linking LAX with the Northwest.


User currently offlineDoug_Or From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 3442 posts, RR: 3
Reply 11, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 4376 times:

WN used to go to LAX (and maybe BUR or ONT?) out of PDX in the 90s. Don't know why they stopped, the flights I was on were full, but I was probably traveling at peak times back then.


When in doubt, one B pump off
User currently offlineEghansen From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 4373 times:



Quoting N1120A (Reply 6):
Nearly every route WN flies out of LAX has competition.

I am not suggesting as a hard and fast rule that Southwest will not go head-to-head with the big boys, but who would have ever heard of Islip if Southwest wasn't flying there? (I humbly apologize to those residents of Long Island who will write back and say that insulting their local airport.)


User currently offlineEVA777SEA From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 473 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 4309 times:



Quoting OzarkD9S (Reply 3):
WN has also had some issues with SEA, as their well documented battle to move to BFI.

If that had happened, you could bet that we could have SEA-SoCal flights now. If I remember correctly, they wanted to really build up BFI, into one of their larger stations.


User currently offlineRwsea From Netherlands, joined Jan 2005, 3135 posts, RR: 2
Reply 14, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 4229 times:



Quoting OzarkD9S (Reply 3):
WN has also had some issues with SEA, as their well documented battle to move to BFI.



Quoting N1120A (Reply 4):
I think this has a lot to do with it.

I'm not so sure about that - after the spat with SEA, WN has still added additional frequencies to LAS/PHX and has recently added SEA-DEN. If there was a market, they'd add it. I'm thinking its a combination of AS/UA and the capacity issues at LAX, SNA, etc. However, I'd be interested to see if they add SEA/PDX-SFO in an attempt to head-off Virgin America.


User currently offlineIowaman From United States of America, joined May 2004, 4433 posts, RR: 6
Reply 15, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 4210 times:
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With the combination of so many 1 stop flights via SJC/OAK/SFO/LAS/PHX/wherever to socal from SEA and PDX, and the lack of gates/slots/space in every socal WN airport but ONT, and the high fees of SEA as well as higher priorities in the network, all combine together so it's not high on the list. If the gate space was more avail., and fees were lower on both ends, as well as extra 737's and cheap fuel to go around, there is no doubt in my mind a SEA/PDX-LAX/BUR/SAN would work.

[Edited 2007-11-19 23:05:51]

User currently offlineSeaBosDca From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 5841 posts, RR: 6
Reply 16, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 4186 times:



Quoting N1120A (Reply 4):
I have friends in Seattle who are so loyal to WN, they always do the connection or 1 stop down to L.A.,

 crazy 

Masochists.

Seriously, though, I'm surprised AS/QX doesn't have more competition in the PNW (especially SEA)-SoCal market. Plenty of airlines, not just WN, could make such flights work. For the sake of my own sanity, I hope the next one to try is not WN.

Also, I price WN just for kicks on many trips I take, although it would take a fare hundreds cheaper to convince me to actually fly them. I rarely find that the fare is different from the legacies by more than a few bucks.


User currently offlineLACA773 From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 4064 posts, RR: 2
Reply 17, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 4179 times:
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Quoting RoseFlyer (Reply 8):
I'd like to say it was because of Alaska, but WN and AS compete heavily to the Bay Area from SEA and PDX.

WN has stayed out of the SEA/PDX-Socal market and AS has mostly stayed out of the Northern California to Socal routes. The two airlines seem to leave each other alone.

RoseFlyer, Very good point. You pretty much hit that on the money. But as many of you have mentioned, AS flies into very large WN cities, LAS, PHX. AS has quite a few flights from both of these cities to both PDX & SEA which before was the basic 3x times a day to both except for during peak times of the year. I've noticed since AS has become much more a "no frills" kinda airline, though still a legacy (since they still have an F cabin) they have added a lot of service out of cities like LAX & PHX.
I have wondered why also WN hasn't started service from LAX to PDX & SEA (other than gate space being an issue in T1). I wouldn't be surprised to see WN add LAX-PDX now that UA is going UAX to PDX from LAX with CR7s.
I'm sure BUR can use a couple more flights a day on the BUR-SEA run. I'm sure they wouldn't have any problems filling flights on a route like this up.

LACA773


User currently onlineF9Animal From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 5122 posts, RR: 28
Reply 18, posted (7 years 1 month 3 days ago) and read 4138 times:

It also has to do with the costs. SEA is pretty expensive to operate out of, hence why they wanted to go out of BFI. Lucky for AS that WN has not made a push on the NW region. I would however like to see WN look into flying into the Alaska territory. How cool it would be to see WN in ANC, and a few other places.


I Am A Different Animal!!
User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26810 posts, RR: 75
Reply 19, posted (7 years 1 month 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 4122 times:



Quoting Rwsea (Reply 14):
If there was a market, they'd add it.

The market is very obviously there.

Quoting Rwsea (Reply 14):

I'm not so sure about that - after the spat with SEA, WN has still added additional frequencies to LAS/PHX and has recently added SEA-DEN.

That is more of a slight reallocation of capacity as opposed to an onslaught of new service. An entry into the SEA-LAX market would mean at least 3-4 flights a day to compete.



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
User currently offlineIaddca From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 286 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (7 years 1 month 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 4057 times:



Quoting Eghansen (Reply 5):

WN has always been a very elusive airline regarding direct competition.

then why close to 50 flights a day between SFO, SAN, LAX, and LAS? Red envy?


User currently offlineSearpqx From Netherlands, joined Jun 2000, 4344 posts, RR: 10
Reply 21, posted (7 years 1 month 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 3780 times:



Quoting F9Animal (Reply 18):
Lucky for AS that WN has not made a push on the NW region. I would however like to see WN look into flying into the Alaska territory. How cool it would be to see WN in ANC, and a few other places.

Check your history, WN made a very aggressive push after the Morris Air purchase and WN/AS went head on several key routes. The outcome was reduced WN frequencies to GEG & BOI and a guarded co-existence on SEA-SJC/OAK. AS is one of the few carriers that has successfully fought back and held its ground against WN, and they've made clear they'll do it again if necessary. I doubt that alone would stop WN from expanding in AS markets, but when their are other opportunities it probably does figure into the dearth of SEA-So Cal WN operated flights.



"The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity"
User currently offlineAeroMaxx From United States of America, joined May 2006, 71 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (7 years 1 month 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 3670 times:

So basically it is AS that is keeping WN from adding Pacific NW to South Cal. routes? I would think that they would make at least LAX-PDX or SEA work since they do so well to other cities within 200 miles (LAS).

User currently offlineSearpqx From Netherlands, joined Jun 2000, 4344 posts, RR: 10
Reply 23, posted (7 years 1 month 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 3622 times:



Quoting AeroMaxx (Reply 22):
o basically it is AS that is keeping WN from adding Pacific NW to South Cal. routes?

Like others have said, I don't think AS is the sole reason, but when you add in a tough competitor, below average fares already available, multiple competitors, space constraints on one end and high costs on the other, I think WN sees better opportunities elsewhere for now.



"The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity"
User currently offlineAirRyan From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 2532 posts, RR: 5
Reply 24, posted (7 years 1 month 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 3471 times:



Quoting SeaBosDca (Reply 16):
Also, I price WN just for kicks on many trips I take, although it would take a fare hundreds cheaper to convince me to actually fly them. I rarely find that the fare is different from the legacies by more than a few bucks.

Remember that there are two variables that go into determining the price of the ticket you pay for airfare - one is the actual level of airfare that the airline has published or made available but then there is the just as important variable of yield management which may or may not make that fare available for purchase at that time.


25 N1120A : That was a different time and AS had a much better product to compete with. AS has gone from having some of the best domestic service in the industry
26 Searpqx : I think you'll find in the markets we're discussing it comes down to price, price and finally price. I'm no fan of the changes at AS, but they still
27 MtnWest1979 : Well, WN has not reduced frequency into BOI since they began here. BOI-PDX/SEA/GEG flights have been 3/day (well SEA was two until originating flight
28 BooDog : large portions of the intra-alaska commercial flights are somewhat regulated.... Alaska Airlines is the only airline allowed to do these flights. Thi
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