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Why Is Delta (Mesaba) Getting Rid Of Tag Flights?  
User currently offlinevw From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 252 posts, RR: 1
Posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 3912 times:

In the latest timetable of Delta, the EAS route of MSP-MCW-FOD is being split up to nonstops to both destinations. Mason City 3 times daily and Ft. Dodge 2 times daily. This seems like a large over kill of flights. I am 100% pro aviation (I'm a corprate pilot), but this is a large waste of money. FOD normally enplanes under 10,000 per year, as I rode on the flight last July with three other passengers on the MCW-FOD flight. With a SAAB two times a day, that gives you 24,820 seats to FOD. I would like to hear the justification. And I do understand the turbo-prop break even mark is lower than a jet, but thats a lot of empty seats. Thanks for any insight.

5 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineWESTERN737800 From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 693 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 3621 times:

They are currently flying MSP-ATY-PIR. I heard starting Apr 6 they will go MSP-PIR (x2) and MSP-ATY. I hope it works out, but I have my doubts.


Bring back Western Airlines!
User currently offlineMSPNWA From United States of America, joined Apr 2009, 1911 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 3507 times:

Good question; it's one that I've been wondering about as well. Unfortunately it seems to be the norm for DL to not follow the decades-old procedures here in the Upper Midwest. I will be absolutely shocked if Fort Dodge can support a nonstop to MSP. Even MCW has some very light loads depending on the flight, and that's with the help of the tag to FOD. To me it's just one more step in saying "it didn't work" and canceling service. That's what I expect will be the ultimate result for FOD.

User currently offlinepeanuts From Netherlands, joined Dec 2009, 1438 posts, RR: 4
Reply 3, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 3412 times:

More importantly: what happens when the Saab gets phased out altogether? (are they still planned on being phased out?)

Maybe this is a precursor to elimination of a route. By cutting the tag flights, DL will be demonstrating that certain services (FOD) may be unsustainable period. Or "force" an increase of EAS disbursements somehow.

Cutting a tag may also stimulate traffic though.

Current EAS for both FOD and MCW is in effect until June 2011. Mesaba gets the same amount of subsidies for both towns.

I'm a bit confused on this one though...



Question Conventional Wisdom. While not all commonly held beliefs are wrong…all should be questioned.
User currently offlineJetlanta From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 3252 posts, RR: 35
Reply 4, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 3134 times:

I'm not familiar with why NW operated the tags for so long, but Delta philosophically got out of them a decade ago. The tag portion is simply extra cost in most cases. If the market cannot support nonstop service, it simply isn't economical to operate. Think about it...why operate two flight segments that are only going to carry a total of 30 people or so (there is no local traffic between the two spokes in these situations), when you can find someplace to operate that aircraft with 30 people worth of revenue but only one segment worth of costs?

Its a very sound philosophy and most carriers operate using it these days. NW was a hold out.


User currently offlineUSPIT10L From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 3295 posts, RR: 7
Reply 5, posted (4 years 4 months 1 week 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 2987 times:

Quoting Jetlanta (Reply 4):
I'm not familiar with why NW operated the tags for so long, but Delta philosophically got out of them a decade ago. The tag portion is simply extra cost in most cases. If the market cannot support nonstop service, it simply isn't economical to operate. Think about it...why operate two flight segments that are only going to carry a total of 30 people or so (there is no local traffic between the two spokes in these situations), when you can find someplace to operate that aircraft with 30 people worth of revenue but only one segment worth of costs?

Actually, DL Connection stopped doing most tags almost 20 years ago. Markets like ANB, GAD, and TCL were all served via other markets like CSG, DHN, and MSL. ASA/DL Connection cut them around 1989-91 and either dropped them altogether or routed them through ATL only. The last tag-ons for DL that were finally linked to ATL were GTR and AEX in 2003.

DL mainline didn't stop them until just after 9/11. For decades they flew routes like JANBTRSHVDFW or BHMSDFCVG.



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