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Thesis: Simulated Hub Development  
User currently offlinebjorn14 From Norway, joined Feb 2010, 3363 posts, RR: 2
Posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 8623 times:

Hi,

I know there have been hub discussions previously but I am writing a thesis on developing a medium to large-sized US hub with an LCC using 75-125 pax planes. Supporting 50-75 destinations. I am looking for suggestions for cities/airports as 'real world' possibilities as not to make it too academic and with the assumption that this hub has a reasonable chance to succeed.

Thanks in advance.

Bjorn


"I want to know the voice of God the rest is just details" --A. Einstein
55 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinefjnovak1 From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 607 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 8618 times:

I've always thought Austin or San Antonio would be possibilities...


Go Blue!!
User currently offlinedeltaguy767 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 658 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 8606 times:

How about RIC? You could run an east coast operation without funneling people through NYC or WAS.

Cheers from BDL,   
DeltaGuy767



A Good Landing is one you walk away from!
User currently offlineATLFlyer323 From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 614 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 8595 times:

What about PIT? I know it used to serve as a "hub or focus city" at one point in time. It has a metro population of about 2.5 million and and airport that is already sufficient enough to handle large amounts of traffic.

Just a thought,
Brandon



Everyday, the fluffy temptation of wheat!
User currently offlineBAKJet From United States of America, joined Nov 2007, 740 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 8589 times:

Maybe Indianapolis, Norfolk or Jacksonville?

Also, this website might help you. http://www.airwaysim.com/ Its a pretty realistic online airline management simulation game.



Don't Breed or Buy While Shelter Pets Die
User currently offlineFURUREFA From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 801 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 8585 times:

Quoting fjnovak1 (Reply 1):
I've always thought Austin or San Antonio would be possibilities...

I think those sound like good options, but SAT is pretty far south.

Quoting fjnovak1 (Reply 1):
How about RIC? You could run an east coast operation without funneling people through NYC or WAS.

To me, RIC does not have enough O/D to support a hub, especially a LCC one.

What about RDU?

Matt


User currently offlinebiggsfo From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 2910 posts, RR: 6
Reply 6, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 8503 times:

Pittsburgh, St.Louis, Nashville, New Orleans....those would probably be capable of supporting 50 destinations.

User currently onlineCALPSAFltSkeds From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 2573 posts, RR: 9
Reply 7, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 8457 times:

Will you factoring in competition and whether the competition is an LLC or not? If your hub is in the Eastern protions of the US, you'll probably have destinations with shorter stage lengths on average, thus allowing more frequency or requiring fewer aircraft. For a point of reference using your parameters based on 10 hour utilization, one one end of the spectrum with 75 aircraft flying to 75 cities gives each route an average of 1.5 round trips per destination with 3 hour stage lengths. The other end would be 125 aircraft flying to 50 destinations would provide about 4 RTs on average for each route.
In general a good hub is at least 1/3 local traffic and the rest connections - the more routes, the higher the connection percentage as markets multiply.
A good hub has balance on at least two sides (east/west or north/south). Mid continent hub s of MCI and STL may work as they have had more flights in the past and have good O & D, but now have heavy WN presence. You may want to stay away from placing a hub close to other massive hubs like ATL, IAH, DFW, ORD, realizing that maybe your hub could become a reliever to those hubs. Others that might work are CMH, PIT and IND. I think a western hub would have less chance of success due to longer distances between cities and the fact that most cities are along the coast and don't have directional potential. LAS might work, but again WN is a factor and yields/loads have peaking problems.


User currently offlineOzarkD9S From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 4973 posts, RR: 21
Reply 8, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 8445 times:

Quoting biggsfo (Reply 6):


Pittsburgh, St.Louis, Nashville, New Orleans....those would probably be capable of supporting 50 destinations.

Pittsbugh: Maybe, limited LFC presence
St. Louis: Tougher nut to crack with fairly large WN presence
Nashville: See St. Louis
New Orleans: See St. Louis

As the OP mentioned "real world possibilities" one has to consider what's out there already.

There are precious few large metro areas out there that could support such an operation that the OP envisions. Those markets are already spoken for. A single hub operation with say 3 daily frequencies per market means at minimum 150 daily departures. Less frquency than that will turn off the biz traveller.

I could however, see a multihub LFC within the OP's vision spread out over 2 or 3 of the aforementioned cities, PIT/STL/MSY would be an interesting combo with complimentary traffic flows.



Next Up: STL-LGA-RIC-ATL-STL
User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3178 posts, RR: 4
Reply 9, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 8001 times:

I would suggest CVG once DAL reduces operations.

CVG has a very large populace and NO LLCs.

If DAL cuts back more and starts vacating the terminal, you would have a nice terminal that is relatively new to work with. It is in a good central location for those E to W flights as well as the N to S flights and vice versa.

Cincinnati itself has a large population on both sides of the river as well as drawing people from Dayton area and Lexington area. Dayton just sees LLC from TRS and FFT and LEX as far as I know just from AAY (TRS?).

CVG has not seen service from LLCs as far as I know since the original Air Tran before it was taken over by Value Jet and fares are high. If DAL cuts back more at CVG due to its proximity to DTW or even goes down to regional jets, pax might be more comfortable flying your larger aircraft - that is if you go to aircraft more towards the 125 seat range vs 75 seats.


User currently offlineKingFriday013 From United States of America, joined May 2007, 1296 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 7674 times:

Don't choose ROC. Unless you're planning to fly south or west of Chicago, we have most of the eastern United States covered (and Toronto too!). Maybe destinations such as DFW, IAH, LAX, SFO, PHX, SEA, MSP, and perhaps smaller eastern cities like BGR, RDU, PIT, and IND would work. Then again you need room for the planes, and we're a pretty small space for anything more than 20 or so planes, not to mention 50.

Good luck! I'd love to read it when it's complete. What degree are you writing it for?

-J.



Tho' I've belted you an' flayed you, By the livin' Gawd that made you, You're a better man than I am, Gunga Din!
User currently offlinejfr From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 227 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 7239 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 9):

Excllent suggestion. Plus CVG has a substantial number of big corporates, which might be interested in supporting/underwriting an LCC Hub operation.

The airport manager, John Mok, would probably be very interested in helping you get this thesis done. He might find it a helpful tool to show around......

You never can tell....this idea might have legs.


User currently offlineRiddlePilot215 From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 317 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 7155 times:
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I think most of you are forgetting a few things about CVG and PIT....the landing fees and PFC's alone are enough to drive an LCC operation crazy...Especially if you're a new entrant into the market that could just be downright prohibitive.


God is good, all the time. All the time, God is good.
User currently offlinethegreatRDU From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2310 posts, RR: 4
Reply 13, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 7015 times:

Of course RDU...we have high yielding RTP travelers....but since this is a LCC you might turn them off....


Our Returning Champion
User currently offlinerangercarp From United States of America, joined Nov 2009, 143 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 6 days ago) and read 6513 times:

I have always thought MCI, STL and DEN are the perfect mid-continent hub locations. ICT and OMA would join that group IF they had better O&D. Obviously DEN is taken, times three. MCI has a strong LCC presence and the terminal would need renovation for connections inside of security. STL now has plenty of vacant space that could be rented cheap, but as has been mentioned, WN would be a big factor.

I never thought about it before, but I like this idea of CVG (and to a lesser extent, IND). It is far enough east to allow a lot of north-south connections, yet far enough west to cover a whole lot of east-west connections. Additionally it is well placed for Texas to the northeast connections. I have no knowledge of landing fees at any of these airports, but like STL, I am certain one could secure the needed CVG terminal space at great rates.

OK, now here is a thought that could make things complicated: If a new LCC moved into CVG or STL, what are the chances of Delta/AA building their former hub back up -- for a year or two -- with the sole purpose of destroying a competitor???



iwgbtp!
User currently offlineQantas777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 484 posts, RR: 1
Reply 15, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 6272 times:

Well, if it's real world, you would not do the US since yields sucks and capacity is not where it should be yet. Can you do another country?

RDU may work, just copy Midway, obviously dont' include the crj. RDU can provide somewhat good yields and has a good business market for the northeast us as well.

MCI, STL will never work, but since this is academia, you can probably get away with it and make it look good. Gosh this is a tough once since the reality of the markets really suck. Create an MCO one and create an intl latin flow?

btw, do not do sat, aus, msy.


User currently offlineFlyASAGuy2005 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 7004 posts, RR: 11
Reply 16, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 6214 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 9):
I would suggest CVG once DAL reduces operations

Heck, I would throw in CVG now. DL's OPS in CVG is a joke. A new entrant should be able to settle right in and take advantage of the key business markets and leisure destinations.



What gets measured gets done.
User currently offlineATLFlyer323 From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 614 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 6093 times:

Quoting BAKJet (Reply 4):
Maybe Indianapolis, Norfolk or Jacksonville?

Jacksonville could work, it is the major airport for SE Georgia and NE Florida. You could potentially get all the students and parents flying to UF or the colleges in Jacksonville, and the metro area does have roughly 1.3 million people. If you think could get enough passengers it's one I would look into. Both concourses are brand new with empty gate space and JAX has master pans to add an additional concourse if the demand presented itself.

-Brandon



Everyday, the fluffy temptation of wheat!
User currently offlinemiller22 From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 716 posts, RR: 4
Reply 18, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 6062 times:

If you're determined to set up an LCC hub (which I would advise against) then I would strongly suggest DFW. DFW is the largest single-airline market, especially when you consider WN's limitations at DAL with the Wright Amendment.

Consider the success of Airtran in Atlanta, and apply that to DFW.


User currently offlinebiggsfo From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 2910 posts, RR: 6
Reply 19, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 5967 times:

Quoting miller22 (Reply 18):
Consider the success of Airtran in Atlanta, and apply that to DFW.

Indeed. That would make for a very interesting thesis.


User currently offlineERJ170 From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 6747 posts, RR: 18
Reply 20, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 5962 times:

Quoting bjorn14 (Thread starter):
developing a medium to large-sized US hub with an LCC using 75-125 pax planes. Supporting 50-75 destinations.

I would suggest RDU (of course) or GSO. Simply because both are very well geographically speaking. It's great for funneling North/West-South, North/South-West, US-Europe, North/West-Caribbean, South-Canadian, and North-Central American.

Certain cities are well covered (at least from RDU), but very few are well covered with mainline (exceptions are ATL and CLT).

The aircraft size you are proposing (E70/CR7 to E90/C300) is perfect for mid-tier airports. I would say they may actually be too small for large airport simply because the large airports are already someone else's hub and they would instantly pounce with larger aircraft with much higher frequency and more populous frequent flier options.

Just my opinion..



Aiming High and going far..
User currently offlinemiller22 From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 716 posts, RR: 4
Reply 21, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 5942 times:

Quoting bjorn14 (Thread starter):

So, do we all get stock options when this thing takes off?  

Ask Fred Smith how his college thesis turned out. (FYI Fred got a C)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_W._Smith

[Edited 2010-02-28 08:13:44]

User currently offlineFlyASAGuy2005 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 7004 posts, RR: 11
Reply 22, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 5861 times:

Quoting RiddlePilot215 (Reply 12):
I think most of you are forgetting a few things about CVG and PIT....the landing fees and PFC's alone are enough to drive an LCC operation crazy...Especially if you're a new entrant into the market that could just be downright prohibitive.

Let's not forget, many times these fees may be reduced, especially for new entrants. Of course, in any airline business model, this will be accounted for and added into the start-up costs; assuming that they already know how many flights they plan on having through the year (even if the number goes up).



What gets measured gets done.
User currently offlinejetboy2 From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 46 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 5783 times:

Quoting bjorn14 (Thread starter):
US hub with an LCC using 75-125 pax planes

If you chose to go with CVG, you could pitch your having bigger planes (such as E-jets) to the public as an advantage since Delta mostly flies smaller RJs.


User currently offlinetexan From New Zealand, joined Dec 2003, 4270 posts, RR: 52
Reply 24, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 5731 times:

Quoting miller22 (Reply 18):
If you're determined to set up an LCC hub (which I would advise against) then I would strongly suggest DFW. DFW is the largest single-airline market, especially when you consider WN's limitations at DAL with the Wright Amendment.

Consider the success of Airtran in Atlanta, and apply that to DFW.

If you were to do that, however, you would need to factor in American's competitive response (see Vanguard, WestPac, AirTran's abortive attempt at a focus city, and others) as well as Southwest's competitive advantages operating short haul from DAL.

On paper, you could make it work. Choose strong O&D cities with little to no competition to and from Dallas, factor in connecting opportunities, and you could make a case that having a 125 airplane, 50 city operation would be economically viable. Try translating that off paper, though, and you will likely come up with a different story.

One thing I would suggest is focusing on having a unique, strong product with strong brand loyalty. No idea how you might want to do that, but in order to attract passengers away from established carriers in established markets, you need to do something different.

Texan



"I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library."
25 MtnWest1979 : Well, whenever I would put together an airline route map on paper, I liked to settle on CMH and OKC as hub cities. Seem to have decent amount of local
26 biggsfo : Well there aren't any major metropolitan areas who fit the OP's scope (50-75 aircraft; 75-125 destinations) which aren't already dominated by one or m
27 miller22 : I agree entirely, which is why I disagreed with the initial premise. Given the rules of the exercise, DFW seems the logical choice, but I wouldn't bu
28 Tommy767 : I would say ABQ or MCI.
29 thegreatRDU : Trsut me, RDU is the one for you!
30 cornish : Well for starters you must not make the common mistake of referring to a hub when you mean a base. Hub operatoions are very much the preserve of netwo
31 LV : I would say the only airport that could support this type of operation when you look at corporate/ business O&D, available infrastructure and lack
32 steex : I don't know exactly what model you're looking for, but you could create a theoretical airline with several smaller "focus cities" that coincide with
33 MtnWest1979 : 56 (iirc) is the magic number. And the WA only lasts 4 more years anyway. Could you get gate space since it is all allocated now?
34 peanuts : My first guess would be STL or MCI. If you want to avoid WN : MEM (even with DL)
35 steex : Yeah, you're absolutely (w)right, slipped my mind at that moment. I guess that would force a change in aircraft type and would also be less desirable
36 pitops : I would say PIT. US Airways once operated their largest hub from PIT, roughly 550 flights per day. So we know the facility can handle the traffic. Ru
37 NASCARAirforce : True - CVG catchment is big enough to handle both - DAL ops are a joke compared to what they were 10 years ago. Is there much mainline left? I rememb
38 flyguy89 : I can't tell you how many times I have addressed this issue. Though their hub stories may be similar, CVG's books are nothing like PIT's. CVG's airpo
39 jetMARC : How about Colorado Springs (COS)... it's been proven to work with Western Pacific, smack in the middle of the country, and the airport is a beautiful
40 PavlovsDog : I think this is a much better idea. What the flying public needs is not another hub but more point to point flights organized in micro hubs providing
41 RiddlePilot215 : That depends though. The deals can't be TOO sweetheart, or else the already existing carriers will squawk. Plus the Feds have pretty stringent rules
42 thegreatRDU : I don't think CVG, SAT, MSY, MCI, PIT, IND, CMH, GSO, STL, etc...are good choices.... RDU is a keeper
43 texan : I disagree. RDU is essentially a northeast to southeast connector. There is nothing that makes it intrinsically better than ATL, CLT, DCA, or IAD. Ye
44 Alias1024 : It worked 15 years ago when UA had a near stranglehold on DEN. CO had dismantled their hub, F9 was just getting going, and the people of DEN were get
45 thegreatRDU : What did the cities I mention all have in common? They are relatively mid-sized cities just like RDU I believe RDU will blow those cities out of the
46 jetMARC : The distance from Denver to DIA would be fairly similar considering DIA is out the in the middle of nowhere and the size and hassle of the airport. I
47 texan : I completely understand your argument. It is rational, I just don't think it plays out in a business sense. Perhaps my problem, to answer your main q
48 Alias1024 : You might be able to draw a few in from north of Castle Rock, but I can't imagine getting too many. The drive to DEN is pretty straight forward from
49 Post contains images thegreatRDU : Very Classy...
50 VictorKilo : In general this is what ExpressJet tried to do with its foray into branded flying, to limited success. Even with a nonstop, it's difficult to compete
51 flyguy89 : This is why I believe that any new start-up would have to attach themselves to a larger FF program such as AAdvantage or SkyMiles, at least that woul
52 thegreatRDU : That I didn't know....how did that happen?
53 flyguy89 : Well, IIRC, Midway never had their own FF program and when they started up in RDU just as AA was pulling things down, they struck out a partnership w
54 thegreatRDU : I read all about it...sad Looking back at this.....CVG is the perfect storm...the only problem are the DL loyalists...DL screwed them over but are th
55 Post contains images flyguy89 : I think RDU could work too the former AA and Midway operations there have always fascinated me and it has great potential as a north-south hub. Then
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