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Southwest In.. Hawaii?  
User currently offlineMrSkyGuy From United States of America, joined Aug 2008, 1214 posts, RR: 3
Posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 20662 times:

The recent thread on the history of Aloha Airlines operation and Allegiant's recent acquisition of 757s for service from the west coast to Hawaii got me thinking. Aloha used to service Hawaii directly (non-stop) from John Wayne Airport (KSNA) with a 737-700.. and SNA's runway is extremely short. SWA operates the largest fleet of 737s on the planet and virtually dominates the west coast with cheap flights..

What would the likelihood be of WN considering service from one (or more) of it's tremendous west coast operation to Hawaii? Would they be able to compete with enough revenue left to justify the operation? Or would the lengthy low-frequency turns be too far from WN's core to be considered? Technically speaking it would appear that flights from WN's LAX, SNA and perhaps OAK focus cities would be ideal launching pads for such service if Aloha was able to make it work from SNA, and I'm sure SWA's network of loyal passengers would appreciate the new offering.. but would it make financial sense?


"The strength of the turbulence is directly proportional to the temperature of your coffee." -- Gunter's 2nd Law of Air
63 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinewedgetail737 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 5890 posts, RR: 6
Reply 1, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 20636 times:
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WN would have outfit some of their 737-700's for ETOPS, as well as train crews. It seems to be fairly large investment. It would depend on whether or not WN wants to make that investment. I'm sure there are other requirements that others chiming in will comment.

User currently offlinedl767captain From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 2539 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 20637 times:

I think it would be really interesting to see how southwest handled Hawaii. There is a lot of competition for hawaii flights and having a budget carrier like WN come in to the market would certainly cause a fare war. The question is if any of WN's planes are ETOPs rated, if it's just a small fleet that can travel to hawaii it might not be worth adding them to WN's network who like to shuffle planes all over the place.

User currently offlineiowaman From United States of America, joined May 2004, 4368 posts, RR: 6
Reply 3, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 20536 times:
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It could be done with ETOPS, but honestly there is still plenty of opportunity in the next few years IMO domestically as well as Mexico/Caribbean before having to run lengthy Hawaii flights. I suspect it will be done eventually, say after 2015. Once WN gets the rest of the major U.S. markets covered, the businessman and family are going to want a place to use their Rapid Reward tickets, and Mexico/Hawaii/Caribbean are obviously a great place to do it. My father spends two weeks a year in Cabo and has to fly US via PHX from LAS to get there- if WN flew there they'd likely be using a free ticket and purchasing a ticket as well. Now, that hurts yields if it's a free ticket dump, but they'd be using the free ticket elsewhere anyways.


Next flights: WN DSM-LAS-PHX, US PHX-SJD. Return: US SJD-PHX, WN PHX-MDW-DSM
User currently onlineGSPSPOT From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3010 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 20380 times:

Wouldn't something like this pretty much be inevitable, eventually? My question is, would West Coast to Hawaii flights be long enough that they'd have to make some sort of concessions to pax comfort like increased seat pitch, actual BOB meals, etc?


Finally made it to an airline mecca!
User currently offlineMrSkyGuy From United States of America, joined Aug 2008, 1214 posts, RR: 3
Reply 5, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 20291 times:

Quoting GSPSPOT (Reply 4):
My question is, would West Coast to Hawaii flights be long enough that they'd have to make some sort of concessions to pax comfort like increased seat pitch, actual BOB meals, etc?

I wouldn't imagine so, no.. and I wouldn't expect much of a difference at G4 either for their 757 Hawaiian service. The only new "PAX comfort" item WN is investing in would be Row44 internet.. but I haven't checked to see if that's ground or SAT-based connectivity (determining whether or not it'd work for ETOPS flights to Hawaii).



"The strength of the turbulence is directly proportional to the temperature of your coffee." -- Gunter's 2nd Law of Air
User currently offlineMacsog6 From Singapore, joined Jan 2010, 525 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 20036 times:
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Quoting GSPSPOT (Reply 4):
increased seat pitch

WN's seat pitch is OK as is, even for a big guy like me. If I can handle QF in economy from SFO to SYD, I could handle WN to HNL or other island airports.



Sixty Plus Years of Flying! "I fly because it releases my mind from the tyranny of petty things." - Saint Ex
User currently offlineBluewave 707 From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 3152 posts, RR: 6
Reply 7, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 19837 times:

If WN were to serve Hawaii, not only would they have to train crews for ETOPS, and convert several 73Ws for ETOPS, but make sure they have spares ready in case of any issues. As one person said above, will WN make the investment, because they will need to see what the return on this investment would be, and how fast this destination can generate a profit.

WN also code-shared with TZ, when bought into ownership of TZ. The WN flight codes were SWA47xx.

I flew on AQ's SNA run from HNL & back. It was probably one of the best flights I was on, and AQ had one of the best customer services around.



"The best use of your life will be to so live your life, that the use of your life will outlive your life" -- D Severn
User currently offlineEA CO AS From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 13517 posts, RR: 62
Reply 8, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 19709 times:
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Keep in mind, any WN service to/from Hawaii would likely mean they'd need to:

1. Accept it as a loss-leader for them, as that's where ALL Rapid Rewards tickets would end up being used.

or

2. Re-work their Rapid Rewards program to ensure customers cannot easily use a free RR ticket to/from Hawaii.



"In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan
User currently offlineN471wn From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1517 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 19618 times:
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Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 8):
Keep in mind, any WN service to/from Hawaii would likely mean they'd need to:

1. Accept it as a loss-leader for them, as that's where ALL Rapid Rewards tickets would end up being used.

or

2. Re-work their Rapid Rewards program to ensure customers cannot easily use a free RR ticket to/from Hawaii.


They could do what ATA did and charge double RR for the Hawaii service. My friends at HA jump all over me when I dare question HA's conservative response to the demise of ATA and Aloha. HA felt that cities on the West Coast would go back to the old days of widebodies through Honolulu and then a transfer to the outlying islands. What ATA and Aloha did was get we people here in the Oakland area (for example) used to direct flights to many of the islands on narrow bodies and we packed those planes. HA and the legacy carriers have not figured out what Alaska has and that is the smart move to smaller planes direct to the smaller islands. I believe WN cannot ignore the fact that Hawaii (except Honolulu) is badly underserved. So we are all pleased that HA is getting 330's but they should think smaller planes with direct flights....


User currently offlineScottB From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 6712 posts, RR: 32
Reply 10, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 19560 times:

Quoting MrSkyGuy (Reply 5):
The only new "PAX comfort" item WN is investing in would be Row44 internet.. but I haven't checked to see if that's ground or SAT-based connectivity

Row44 is satellite-based.

Quoting iowaman (Reply 3):
It could be done with ETOPS, but honestly there is still plenty of opportunity in the next few years IMO domestically as well as Mexico/Caribbean before having to run lengthy Hawaii flights.

Hawai'i isn't going anywhere. (Well, it does drift very slowly with the plate it's above but...) It makes more sense to continue to develop opportunities in the continental U.S. while they can do so profitably. And long-haul flights to Hawai'i are outside WN's core niche of frequent short-haul travel.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 8):
2. Re-work their Rapid Rewards program to ensure customers cannot easily use a free RR ticket to/from Hawaii.

That would be an issue considering how generous Rapid Rewards is with empty seats.


User currently offlineSilver1SWA From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 4771 posts, RR: 26
Reply 11, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 19399 times:
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Quoting wedgetail737 (Reply 1):
WN would have outfit some of their 737-700's for ETOPS, as well as train crews.

One of the biggest issues that I can think of, and this is just my opinion, is that with the current way WN utilizes their aircraft, going to Hawaii would mean getting the entire fleet ETOPS rated...or at least all the -700s. I imagine that's very expensive and for what, a handful of flights a day out there? I just don't see it fitting well within their model. But hey, who knows? Not me. That's just a guess.

[Edited 2010-05-05 12:25:04]


ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
User currently offlineEA CO AS From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 13517 posts, RR: 62
Reply 12, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 19348 times:
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Quoting Silver1SWA (Reply 11):
with the current way WN utilizes their aircraft, going to Hawaii would mean getting the entire fleet ETOPS rated...or at least all the -700s. I imagine that's very expensive and for what, a handful of flights a day out there?

True, unless they operated a few ETOPS birds and crews on a closed-cycle.



"In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan
User currently offlineBoiler905 From United States of America, joined Apr 2010, 47 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 19345 times:

Gary Kelly was quoted in 2008 with the Chicago Tribune,

"We're not just thinking that we will code-share internationally. We will very well eventually begin to think about our own flights to these entities. I don't know if Hawaii will ever make sense for us. But certainly Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean ought to be eligible in our own route planning. But it's an added layer of complexity and change and investment compared to where we are."

Here's the link: http://www.blogsouthwest.com/news/ch...-southwest-airlines-ceo-gary-kelly

And another link on Southwest's website for why they did not choose to fly to Hawaii back when WN's partner, ATA, went up in smoke.
http://www.blogsouthwest.com/blog/why-no-southwest-to-hawaii

[Edited 2010-05-05 13:08:06]


Boiler Up
User currently offlineDeltaMD90 From United States of America, joined Apr 2008, 7832 posts, RR: 52
Reply 14, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 19323 times:

Like most of the threads on WN, I think the same thing: they are one of the most (if not the most) successful airlines in the US right now, they probably want to keep doing what they've been doing. Why go through the trouble of flying to Hawaii (or international like in some threads) when they can keep doing what they've been successful at? Idk, just my   


Ironically I have never flown a Delta MD-90 :)
User currently offlineMrSkyGuy From United States of America, joined Aug 2008, 1214 posts, RR: 3
Reply 15, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 19276 times:

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 8):
Accept it as a loss-leader for them, as that's where ALL Rapid Rewards tickets would end up being used.

Right, but that wouldn't be a straight-plotted line.. people have to get their RR tickets from flying or through the Chase card--they aren't earned for free. Plus, while I don't know exactly how many RR seats are left open through WN reservations, I doubt it's an infinite-to-full amount. It'd be popular, but I wouldn't translate that to a loss-leading position. There's checks and balances to keep those risks in check.

Quoting ScottB (Reply 10):
Row44 is satellite-based.

5 hours with in-flight connectivity.. I can take almost any seat pitch with that for 5-6 hours. After that, seat pitch and overall seat comfort begins to take more precedence.

Quoting Silver1SWA (Reply 11):
One of the biggest issues that I can think of, and this is just my opinion, is that with the current way WN utilizes their aircraft, going to Hawaii would mean getting the entire fleet ETOPS rated...or at least all the -700s.

Im guessing it would definitely require some contingent of closed-loop aircraft for ETOPS operations.. which is definitely a risk to SWA's flexibility. In fact, thus far, I think that's the highest risk to WN service to Hawaii yet.



"The strength of the turbulence is directly proportional to the temperature of your coffee." -- Gunter's 2nd Law of Air
User currently offlineEA CO AS From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 13517 posts, RR: 62
Reply 16, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 19156 times:
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Quoting MrSkyGuy (Reply 15):
Im guessing it would definitely require some contingent of closed-loop aircraft for ETOPS operations.. which is definitely a risk to SWA's flexibility.

Didn't WN close-cycle aircraft operating to/from LGA already though?



"In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan
User currently offlineUSAirALB From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 3038 posts, RR: 2
Reply 17, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 19048 times:

Quoting GSPSPOT (Reply 4):
Wouldn't something like this pretty much be inevitable, eventually? My question is, would West Coast to Hawaii flights be long enough that they'd have to make some sort of concessions to pax comfort like increased seat pitch, actual BOB meals, etc?

Well they fly BWI-SAN, thats about the length of HI flights (more or less) without any meals.



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User currently offlineMrSkyGuy From United States of America, joined Aug 2008, 1214 posts, RR: 3
Reply 18, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 19018 times:

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 16):
Didn't WN close-cycle aircraft operating to/from LGA already though?

Are the aircraft operating the Baltimore/Chicago-to-La Guardia flights different from others in the WN network?

The closed cycle I was referring to was ETOPS vs. non-ETOPS if a move to Hawaii were to go forward.



"The strength of the turbulence is directly proportional to the temperature of your coffee." -- Gunter's 2nd Law of Air
User currently onlineGSPSPOT From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3010 posts, RR: 2
Reply 19, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 18949 times:

Quoting MrSkyGuy (Reply 15):

5 hours with in-flight connectivity.. I can take almost any seat pitch with that for 5-6 hours. After that, seat pitch and overall seat comfort begins to take more precedence.

For me, it's more like 2 to 2 1/2 hrs...



Finally made it to an airline mecca!
User currently offlineBP1 From United States of America, joined Aug 2007, 593 posts, RR: 1
Reply 20, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 18427 times:

If WN were to base say 9 - 12 planes in the islands and do inter-island with maybe 1 or 2 flights to mainland, that might be sustainable. It is the inter-island service where they could impact Hawaiian and go! flights.

BP1



"First To Fly The A-380" / 26 October 2007 SYD-SIN Inaugural
User currently offlineEA CO AS From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 13517 posts, RR: 62
Reply 21, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 18216 times:
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Quoting MrSkyGuy (Reply 18):
Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 16):
Didn't WN close-cycle aircraft operating to/from LGA already though?

Are the aircraft operating the Baltimore/Chicago-to-La Guardia flights different from others in the WN network?

If I recall correctly, yes. They only do BWI-LGA-BWI-LGA-BWI-LGA all day to avoid LGA delays impacting downline flights outside of that routing.

Quoting MrSkyGuy (Reply 18):
The closed cycle I was referring to was ETOPS vs. non-ETOPS if a move to Hawaii were to go forward.

I understand, and it's exactly the same thing I proposed in reply 12. Keep a small ETOPS sub-fleet and ETOPS-trained crews only flying to/from Hawaii.



"In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan
User currently offlinebrilondon From Canada, joined Aug 2005, 4136 posts, RR: 1
Reply 22, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 17720 times:

Quoting GSPSPOT (Reply 4):
increased seat pitch

This is not a problem as it is only about five hours and AA uses 763's with only 30" pitch and what feels like 12" width between the armrests to HNL from DFW with BOB as the only meal option.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 21):
I understand, and it's exactly the same thing I proposed in reply 12. Keep a small ETOPS sub-fleet and ETOPS-trained crews only flying to/from Hawaii.



"In this present

Would this not be outside the focus of SW for they seem to thrive on short haul quick turn around times?

OTOH WS flies from YVR to Hawaii, and they are great, I just wish they would have better arrival times and departure times. You do have to swallow the rather expensive fare though but it is well worth it.

[Edited 2010-05-05 15:05:00]


Rush for ever; Yankees all the way!!
User currently offlineKELPkid From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 6346 posts, RR: 3
Reply 23, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 17257 times:

Quoting Macsog6 (Reply 6):
WN's seat pitch is OK as is, even for a big guy like me. If I can handle QF in economy from SFO to SYD, I could handle WN to HNL or other island airports.

   Although the service was excellent, I was supremely uncomfortable on SQ from SFO to SIN and back a couple of years ago...no one can touch SQ's service and food, but the economy seats still sucketh    Maybe I should have flown business class   Although one nice concession that most long haul overseas carriers make to their economy cabins is a footrest...wish all the domestics had them.



Celebrating the birth of KELPkidJR on August 5, 2009 :-)
User currently offlineMrSkyGuy From United States of America, joined Aug 2008, 1214 posts, RR: 3
Reply 24, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 17098 times:

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 21):
If I recall correctly, yes. They only do BWI-LGA-BWI-LGA-BWI-LGA all day to avoid LGA delays impacting downline flights outside of that routing.

That's a smart move on WN's part, but I was actually referring to the physical differences in the fleet (which, assuming there are none, lends to the flexibility of the system).

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 21):
I understand, and it's exactly the same thing I proposed in reply 12. Keep a small ETOPS sub-fleet and ETOPS-trained crews only flying to/from Hawaii.

Yeah, it would appear that doing so would be the only way to do it without the drawbacks of the lengthy legs to and from Hawaii plus avoiding the unreasonably high cost of making the entire fleet ETOPS capable (which would be a deal breaker).

Quoting brilondon (Reply 22):
Would this not be outside the focus of SW for they seem to thrive on short haul quick turn around times?

That's exactly the question I'd raised to which he was responding.  



"The strength of the turbulence is directly proportional to the temperature of your coffee." -- Gunter's 2nd Law of Air
25 Silver1SWA : That's simply a daily route or a line. Every flight in the system is part of a scheduled sequence of flights that make up a line. Any airplane in the
26 surfandsnow : WN is known for doing short hops, but none that are *that* short. Interisland service would really hurt HA and Go! but the Hawaii-mainland flights ar
27 Post contains images KELPkid : WN is also not afraid to do tag-ons on their flights, owing to their point-to-point (i.e. not hub and spoke) type operations I could see, for example
28 EA CO AS : Correct, and it wouldn't be too much of a stretch from the closed-cycle routing they currently do to/from LGA to have a sub-fleet dedicated to flying
29 HNL-Jack : AQ learned a couple of things that would apply to WN. 1. The 737-700 engines are not well suited for interisland flying. The short legs and quick tur
30 Silver1SWA : From an aircraft routing, maintenance and irregular ops standpoint, it would be a stretch considering it wouldn't work with how those things are curr
31 jimbobjoe : Southwest tends to be "uncomfortable" with flights that lock up an airplane for a long period of time. Sure, they have a couple transcons, but conside
32 MrSkyGuy : ...yet. Just because it hasn't been done yet doesn't rule it out in the future.
33 QANTAS747-438 : I'd agree that WN doesn't like to have an airplane occupied for so many hours, but I think they're starting to open up to the idea. A few years back,
34 Silver1SWA : Well obviously if they ever decided to go to Hawaii, yes they would be resolved. The question is will WN find it worth it? Would it make good busines
35 bjorn14 : I think Hawai'i would blow up WN RR program. When America West added HNL to their route map their FF enrollment exploded. You still have to remember F
36 EA CO AS : True, however the CEO has gone on record as saying the following: So, no offense intended, but I'd tend to put more stock in his words than those of
37 dlflynhayn : I would love to see that since interisland fares has gone up recently with Mokulele gone! But i do see WN having a problem with ETOPS and all that ma
38 SolarFlyer22 : I agree. Mexico is cheap and easy and there are lots of vacation travelers. I think it would be really hard for them to compete with Aloha which is g
39 Post contains images MrSkyGuy : None received. I'm not a WN fanboy, I'm an enthusiast who appreciates WN's business model.. and a vendor for WN at that. Then again, what better way
40 rfields5421 : According to SeatGuru - the existing SWA seat pitch is the same as, or larger than the legacy airlines (AA, DL, CO, UA) widebody aircraft - except fo
41 N471wn : Gary is not dumb---he would never telegraph WN's strategy----you should have learned that when he flew into LGA!!
42 MrSkyGuy : You know, for economy, WN has some pretty comfortable seats. To be fair, I've sat on a few which had seen more butts than a NYC public toilet (and we
43 Post contains images n901wa : The problem I see is that if Southwest was to base 737-CFM powered in the interisland market. They would have the same problem Aloha had with tearing
44 txagkuwait : Justt a quick historical note for some of you who might not have seen this before Southwest thought long and hard about Hawaii once upon a time/back i
45 LASoctoberB6 : Why would that be?
46 Post contains images Silver1SWA : A couple reasons I can think of... ...fewer seats (122 instead of 137) ...and no cargo bin space. Funny though, how whenever we are given tons (liter
47 WNCrew : FASCINATING tidbit of information I never knew! SOmetimes I think we create our own limitations by buying into things others have said about "difficu
48 lovetojetblue : SFO to BWI is maybe 40 minutes shorter at most
49 737tanker : This problem could be solved by having a codeshare in the interisland market. In fact the current pilot contract only allow domestic codeshare among
50 N1120A : That would be interesting to see. This is smart, but how does it impact their overall utilization numbers? Do they rotate RON aircraft in and out at
51 Bluewave 707 : AQ's mainland routes were a profitable part of their business, along with their cargo ops. AQ proved that trans-Pac 73W ops can be done. Could they ha
52 WNCrew : WN does 20-25min turns with all of their 737's and we don't seem to have a problem. Also, I don't think AQ had any -300 or -400 series 737's, only th
53 Post contains images n901wa : Form the guys at AQ I knew. The problem was not the cooling on the ground after engine shut down. It was the Takeoff, climb and short cruise to desent
54 Bluewave 707 : AQ also had N301AL and N302AL which were 737-3T0s and 737-497s: N401AL and N402AL. all in the early 90s I rode on 301 and 401 in the early 90s
55 WNCrew : ... This thread made it seem like a real fleet-wide issue with tight turns... but clearly their -700's and -200's did fine yes? .....and they only had
56 Post contains images n901wa : The JT8 on the -200 was a good engine for the short hops, and the newer -700 flew mostly Mainland routes. They did fly interisland once in a while but
57 brilondon : Did the Wright Amendment not prohibit such an operation back in the day? I am not sure what the parameters are of this piece of legislation,
58 LoneStarMike : There was no Wright Amendment in the early 1970's when Braniif was flying DAL-HNL because DFW hadn't opened, yet. The Wright Amendment (passed by Con
59 Pohakuloa : Yes they flew them I remember as a child riding the -300 in old colors (pictured above) LIH-HNL and rode the -400 HNL-KOA-HNL in the final livery. As
60 TZTriStar500 : That would have been N303AL and N304AL which were Pemco 737-300QC conversions.
61 EA CO AS : Yes, but AQ was routinely doing those 20-25 minute cooldowns after a 5 hour nonstop flight, something WN doesn't do (or if it does occur, it's infreq
62 Silver1SWA : As stated above, the tight turns contributed to issues of AQ using the CFM56 powered variants on the short hops. I don't think the short turns follow
63 ha763 : No, the -700s were just as bad. When the -700s were on interisland runs, they would start to take delays after the first round trip.
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