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Future Of United's P.S. Brand?  
User currently offlinemogandoCI From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 10744 times:

Currently CO treats these as premium trans-con :

*Transcontinental markets include flights to/from Newark Liberty (EWR) and San Francisco (SFO), Los Angeles (LAX), San Diego (SAN), Portland (PDX) and Seattle (SEA)

New UA has a few options :

1. Convert all EWR-SFO/LAX to full p.s. quality service, on top of keeping JFK ones

2. Status Quo : Keep p.s. at JFK and EWR-SFO/LAX as regular 738/739/753

3. Abandon JFK and have half of SFO/LAX flown by low-density p.s. planes and the other half by high-density sardine cans

4. Keep exisiting p.s., and convert prime-time frequencies of SAN/PDX/SEA to p.s.

5. Switch IAD-SFO/LAX to p.s. as well, maybe even ORD (2-class p.s.) - these are more defensive moves against VX

6. Once the new 787 come online, switch older 762/763 to p.s.

7. (craziest) Abandon p.s.

Your thoughts ?

49 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinehnl-jack From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 819 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 10732 times:

PS is very successful and likely will be retained at JFK. Initially we might see some expansion of the service involving EWR and perhaps conversion to 738 or 739 aircraft depending on the need for 752 aircraft to expand secondary cities in Europe.


Grew up in the business and continued the family tradition.
User currently offlineSTT757 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 16872 posts, RR: 51
Reply 2, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 10706 times:

P.S. Is staying at JFK, it's profitable and very popular.Plus UA has contracts for those routes, EWR will be much like IAD transcon flights, a mix of everything from 738's, 739, 757, 753, 767s, and perhaps even a 777 or 744.


Eastern Air lines flt # 701, EWR-MCO Boeing 757
User currently offlineLAXintl From United States of America, joined May 2000, 25409 posts, RR: 49
Reply 3, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 10666 times:

The p.s. model only works on high volume premium market routes. None of the other markets you mention, nor even EWR fit the bill.

The WSJ had a story on the great success of p.s., and United made mention of how fare revenue at EWR were only 50% of what they were at JFK for example.
United P.s - "Home Run In All Perspectives" (by LAXintl Jul 29 2008 in Civil Aviation)



From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
User currently offlineChopChop767 From Italy, joined Aug 2010, 226 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 10625 times:

I've long thought that the service ought to be expanded on transcon routes. For example, from PHL to LAX and SFO. Most of the flights would be traditional equipment, but perhaps a few perhaps in the morning and evening would be ps. That way, there are options for the air traveler. I think BOS would also be a great market for this.


this year: nap, lgw, fra, dub, fco, add, jib, muc, iad, sea, dca, bos, cdg, ist, bah, prg, ord, hsv, cmn
User currently offlineSlcDeltaRUmd11 From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 3469 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 10576 times:

I think JFK needs to be kept at the existing frequencies to be successful but maybe a few P.S. flights to EWR would make sense to connect with the main International times. This would offer a quality business/first product from LAX and SFO to Europe. Regular service will always be needed on EWR-SFO/LAX to move the masses but adding so 2 P.S. flights a day makes sense to me. They need alot of coach seats a day so all P.S. out of EWR could never work as configured.

I think alot of people use P.S. because it is such a quality product and happens to fly out of JFK but if there were some EWR frequencies those would also be welcomed pretty well. EWR is a better to lower Manhattan(Wall Street) and NJ/CT suburbs to avoid traffic thru the city. EWR could compliment JFK I think theres room for existing P.S. and maybe 2 frequencies a day to EWR. UA has a winner i dont think they want to risk changing it too much


User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21637 posts, RR: 55
Reply 6, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 10566 times:

P.S. isn't designed for the leisure traveler, so if CO/UA wanted to be a player in the NYC-SFO/LA leisure market (and they'd be fools not to), they need to keep regular service around. It makes more sense to keep that service at the big hub since it allows for more connections, and you don't want to lose out on the Long Island market, so P.S. will be staying on the NY side of the river (though I could see it moving to LGA should the perimeter rule be dropped).

One option I didn't see you mention is the option of upgrading the EWR-SFO/LA services to aircraft with BusinessFirst (or whatever the combined carrier's C class is called), as DL has done with its JFK services. That would allow them to still go for the premium market in EWR, but still keep the low-end Y that the hub would generate.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlinemysterzip From United States of America, joined Jul 2008, 168 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 10529 times:

How about adding BusinessFirst from the west coast to EWR? I know it's kind of Delta-ish. I assume Delta uses these Business Elite fitted aircraft to cross the Atlantic, once they get into JFK. CO/UA could do the same. p s could remain a three-class operation LAX/SFO-JFK (and probably will).

And maybe free meals in premium economy on transcons  


User currently offlineSTT757 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 16872 posts, RR: 51
Reply 8, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 10392 times:

CO in the early Ninties ('93, '94) were operating all Flights between EWR and LAX and SFO with Businessfirst equipped DC-10s., so the concept is not new.


Eastern Air lines flt # 701, EWR-MCO Boeing 757
User currently offlineDC8FanJet From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 397 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 10251 times:

Quoting mogandoCI (Thread starter):
2. Status Quo : Keep p.s. at JFK and EWR-SFO/LAX as regular 738/739/753

This is the only option that makes any sense. As others have so clearly stated, p.s. only works with very high yield markets. The JFK/LAX & SFO markets have contracted traffic that doesn't exist in enough volume in the other markets.

A Business First plus normal economy cabin makes sense for the others.


User currently offlineretrolivery From United States of America, joined Nov 2006, 205 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 10112 times:

P.S. should definitely remain at JFK - from a marketing standpoint, part of the service's appeal is it's exclusivity (flying only between JFK and LAX/SFO). If that particular brand of service were to expand to too many East Coast markets they would have to re-vamp the P.S. marketing concept.

I think it would be better if the new UA/CO kept P.S. at JFK but offered a "second-tier" brand of trans-con. This wouldn't be on the same scale as P.S., but rather a quieter unification of in-flight services/frequencies/amenities across the board on all transcontinental services from the airline's East Coast gateways to West Coast destinations and v.v. (EWR/IAD to LAX/SFO/SAN/SEA/PDX)



A3, AA, AC, AI, AK, AM, AP, AZ, B6, BA, CO, DL, EK, EY, FL, FI, FR, KL, KM, LH, MA, MH, MS, OA, OK, OS, SR, TA, TG, U2,
User currently onlineThe777Man From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 6571 posts, RR: 55
Reply 11, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 10054 times:

Quoting mogandoCI (Thread starter):
New UA has a few options :

1. Convert all EWR-SFO/LAX to full p.s. quality service, on top of keeping JFK ones

2. Status Quo : Keep p.s. at JFK and EWR-SFO/LAX as regular 738/739/753

3. Abandon JFK and have half of SFO/LAX flown by low-density p.s. planes and the other half by high-density sardine cans

4. Keep exisiting p.s., and convert prime-time frequencies of SAN/PDX/SEA to p.s.

5. Switch IAD-SFO/LAX to p.s. as well, maybe even ORD (2-class p.s.) - these are more defensive moves against VX

6. Once the new 787 come online, switch older 762/763 to p.s.

7. (craziest) Abandon p.s.

There's an eight option ; have the p.s. flghts remain as they currently are. I guess eventually when the 752s get too old they may be replaced by 762s (CO) or 739/ER CO)

The777Man



Need a Boeing 777 Firing Order....Further to fly....CI, MU, LX and LH 777s
User currently offlinemogandoCI From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 10010 times:

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 3):
The WSJ had a story on the great success of p.s., and United made mention of how fare revenue at EWR were only 50% of what they were at JFK for example.
Quoting LAXintl (Reply 3):
The WSJ had a story on the great success of p.s., and United made mention of how fare revenue at EWR were only 50% of what they were at JFK for example.
United P.s - "Home Run In All Perspectives" (by LAXintl Jul 29 2008 in Civil Aviation)

i think you're confusing cause and effect.

it's not undesirability of EWR causing 50% lower fares compared to JFK on the same seat, but rather, it's a higher-end product commanding a premium over vanilla 38" domestic first


User currently offlineRoseFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 9643 posts, RR: 52
Reply 13, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 9945 times:

Quoting mogandoCI (Thread starter):
1. Convert all EWR-SFO/LAX to full p.s. quality service, on top of keeping JFK ones

P.S. works because it is mostly O/D. UA does not want connecting passengers to use the service. UA use to have BOS-LAX/SFO with 3 class. IAD and EWR have too many connections that would be offering a high quality product, but needing to match lower fares of the competitors.

Quoting mogandoCI (Thread starter):
3. Abandon JFK and have half of SFO/LAX flown by low-density p.s. planes and the other half by high-density sardine cans

JFK will probably stay. I can't imagine it going away. JFK and EWR have quite different cachement areas.

Quoting mogandoCI (Thread starter):
4. Keep exisiting p.s., and convert prime-time frequencies of SAN/PDX/SEA to p.s.

Very few people out of SAN/PDX/SEA are willing to pay for first on a 3 class plane. Some will pay business, but not enough to make a 100 seat 757 profitable.

Quoting mogandoCI (Thread starter):
5. Switch IAD-SFO/LAX to p.s. as well, maybe even ORD (2-class p.s.) - these are more defensive moves against VX

Again, the product does not work well with connections. UA still wants to have the connections, but needs the more competitive higher denisity planes for that.



If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
User currently offlinebohica From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2700 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 9473 times:

Quoting mogandoCI (Thread starter):
Keep p.s. at JFK and EWR-SFO/LAX as regular 738/739/753

EWR-SFO/LAX becomes a hub-to-bub operation post merger. Therefore UA will need capacity for connections at both ends. A PS 757 will not cut it on a hub-to-hub flight. I see in my crystal ball PS staying in JFK. Also on the EWR-SFO/LAX routes I see mainly 757/A320's as well as widebodies on the peak flights.


User currently offlineVC10er From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 2898 posts, RR: 9
Reply 15, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 9077 times:
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I live in NYC and fly UA PS to fly to SFO / LAX all the time. I wouldnt fly anything else. I buy a FF business seat on it and sometimes upgrade to First. When going to SYD I will always use systemwides to upgrade. LAX / SFO to SYD or parts of Asia and then fly transcon on reg domestic first is torture as you are so tired. I'd expect the same if you lived in CA and flew to JFK to connect to JJ / LH / LX and Turkish, Austrian etc etc. For the premium business traveler it's genus!!! The seats, duvets, CD player, food (even the hamburger) amazing service, spotless planes. Also the movie star crowd would DIE!!! EVERYTIME I fly LAX there are one or two celebs. I once sat next to Paula Abdul, Phillis Diller and Michael Phelps (who was totally cool).
It makes UA stand apart from all other legacys. I live for my next p.s. Flight. And they must add EWR for the finance community who can afford it. It's less than a private jet and not that far a step down if in first or row 9 in business. There is a crowd to target...p.s. Contracts with the Goldman Sach's and AMEX crowd. Now one thing they need to fix are the F seats (old SQ business seats from 10+ years ago. UA's international new C seats would be better or CO's new true flat seat...angled flat seats are just O V E R!



The world is missing love, let's use our flights to spread it!
User currently offlineOyKIE From Norway, joined Jan 2006, 2752 posts, RR: 4
Reply 16, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 8908 times:

I really hope that UA finds a way toexpand their P.S services. Too much focus is on low cost, no frills airlines. With this concept U.A. shows that good quality service is still wanted. I believe a P.S configured 738 or 73G would work to expand the P.S service some.


Dream no small dream; it lacks magic. Dream large, then go make that dream real - Donald Douglas
User currently offlineSlcDeltaRUmd11 From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 3469 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 8908 times:

Quoting VC10er (Reply 15):
I live for my next p.s. Flight.

That seems like an amazing life you live  


User currently offlineVC10er From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 2898 posts, RR: 9
Reply 18, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 8837 times:
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Quoting SlcDeltaRUmd11 (Reply 17):

Honestly, my life is filled with more than my fair share of heart ache. Im very lucky though in 2 ways: i have awesome friends and a great job that has taken me around the world in style. I also LOVE to fly. So i get a handful of some very awesome flying experiences like trying out which airline has the best first and business class. But a lot of lonely nights in a hotel room in Vietnam. However, UNITED FIRST, SEAT 1A ON A 747 is my happy place. So was VARIG and SINGAPORE and now i can add LX. Im dying to try ETIHAD and EMERATES.
In ways Im very fortunate, and sexy, but nobody has a perfect life!

And when I am on UA p.s. I wish the flight was longer!



The world is missing love, let's use our flights to spread it!
User currently offlineVC10er From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 2898 posts, RR: 9
Reply 19, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 8813 times:
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Excuse me... I didnt mean to say "I" am sexy. Typo! Ha!

My flights are sexy. I was a bit 20+ years ago. But i was on People Express!!!  



The world is missing love, let's use our flights to spread it!
User currently offlineSchweigend From United States of America, joined Jun 2010, 621 posts, RR: 2
Reply 20, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 8681 times:

Quoting STT757 (Reply 8):
CO in the early Ninties ('93, '94) were operating all Flights between EWR and LAX and SFO with Businessfirst equipped DC-10s., so the concept is not new.

They also ran A300B4s EWR-LAX and -SFO during that time period, with standard domestic First seating -- I think it was four rows, six across.

Around the turn of the century, they flew those routes exclusively with BF-fitted 757s, but that didn't last long, as the birds were needed for Europe.

Quoting VC10er (Reply 15):
It makes UA stand apart from all other legacys. I live for my next p.s. Flight.

Exactly!

I see no reason why UA cannot operate p.s. service ex-EWR amid their standard flights -- CRSs will display only the buckets available for sale, and the backpacker/flip-flop crowd will not find a T or Q fare on a p.s. flight. UA will do well if they properly market the p.s. product to lower Manhattan and the other communities EWR serves.


User currently offlinelaca773 From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 4018 posts, RR: 2
Reply 21, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 8631 times:
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Quoting bohica (Reply 14):

EWR-SFO/LAX becomes a hub-to-bub operation post merger. Therefore UA will need capacity for connections at both ends. A PS 757 will not cut it on a hub-to-hub flight. I see in my crystal ball PS staying in JFK. Also on the EWR-SFO/LAX routes I see mainly 757/A320's as well as widebodies on the peak flights.

I think we'll see more 739ERs and an additional 753 on occasion. The 752s that still fly betwen EWR/IAH-LAX/SFO will continue so they can offer same plane service on the European flights they serve. I don't think you'll see A320s on EWR transcons. The UA transcons that operate from IAD/PHL/EWR/BOS-LAX/SFO that are Airbus, will go 73G/73H for the A319s and 73H & 739ERs for the A320s. UA's 757s will stay put until they decide to upgrade the fleet with winglets and a new premium cabin if those birds are going to do Western Europe flights from IAD.


User currently offlineAmerican762 From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 175 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 8144 times:

Quoting retrolivery (Reply 10):
I think it would be better if the new UA/CO kept P.S. at JFK but offered a "second-tier" brand of trans-con. This wouldn't be on the same scale as P.S., but rather a quieter unification of in-flight services/frequencies/amenities across the board on all transcontinental services from the airline's East Coast gateways to West Coast destinations and v.v. (EWR/IAD to LAX/SFO/SAN/SEA/PDX)

AA sort of does this. They only offer their premium American Flagship Service between JFK-LAX/SFO, but on some true transcons that are not served by AFS, they still offer an increased level of service. For instance, JFK-SAN and JFK-SEA are operated on domestic 757's; but they offer the duvets/larger pillows in First, as well as Menus, and an enhanced meal service.



Pan Am has a place of its' own. You call it the world, we call it home.
User currently offlineAABB777 From United States of America, joined Oct 2007, 554 posts, RR: 2
Reply 23, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 8073 times:
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Quoting American762 (Reply 22):
AA sort of does this. They only offer their premium American Flagship Service between JFK-LAX/SFO, but on some true transcons that are not served by AFS, they still offer an increased level of service. For instance, JFK-SAN and JFK-SEA are operated on domestic 757's; but they offer the duvets/larger pillows in First, as well as Menus, and an enhanced meal service.

AA offers the Flagship Service between IAD-LAX as well, with AFS menus, large pillows and duvets.


User currently offlineSTT757 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 16872 posts, RR: 51
Reply 24, posted (3 years 10 months 2 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 7966 times:

Quoting Schweigend (Reply 20):
They also ran A300B4s EWR-LAX and -SFO during that time period, with standard domestic First seating -- I think it was four rows, six across.

The A300s did not fly on these routes during this time period, the A300s were flying EWR-LAX/SFO from '86/'87-'93. Then the DC-10s took over the routes until '95 when the 757s took over. I flew EWR-SFO in '89 with on a CO A300.

From 1993-1995 the routes were exclusively DC-10s, CO was marketing the all BusinessFirst equipped aircraft on the routes.



Eastern Air lines flt # 701, EWR-MCO Boeing 757
25 VC10er : But not bed seats in first or intl. Business an E+, right? They should - 20 years ago both AA and UA had very similar offers on tiny 767's. I used to
26 washingtonian : I doubt P.S. is going anywhere. The only expansion I can see happening is if the DCA perimeter rule is ever amended, which almost happened this year a
27 American762 : To answer your question, yes AA has had the International Business Recliners for some time. Unfortunately, their First still lacks a little bit behin
28 RoseFlyer : One possible change I see is going to the new CO businessfirst seat in the front of P.S. UA only fits 3 rows of angled lie flat into the front of the
29 LAXintl : Not consistently. Has been mix between 738 or 757 on this route in recent times, with absolutely nothing special service wise.
30 sxb : I still can't believe that because we left SFO around 9am they only had breakfasts available during the flight.... we spent the whole day on the plane
31 Post contains images LAXintl : You spent about 4.5-5 hours on the plane. Hardly the "whole day" Meals types are based on departure time. How else would you like an airline to do it
32 VC10er : Im not sure about a 767. It's one of my fav ac, but the 757 has a private jet feel. But im glad AA upgraded as both UA and AA needed to sex up those
33 sxb : I'm sorry, but when you take off around 9am, it means that you are at the airport around 8am. When you arrive in JFK at 6pm, you are at home at least
34 Post contains images fbgdavidson : Eh? AA offer an upgraded service on their JFK-LAX/SFO routes too. I'm sorry but whilst the seating may somewhat rival a private jet experience, the r
35 bioyuki : UA's restricted meal times are a bit ridiculous. Dinner ends at 7PM, really? If I have to eat one more of their turkey pannini 'snacks' on flights th
36 laca773 : I agree with you as well, VC10er about AA's catering being better than UA's. When UA first started the p.s. service, the catering was top notch and n
37 Schweigend : I'm waiting to see which type of aircraft the new UA will use for its p.s. service -- New 738s or -9s could be delivered set to go. When the new UA st
38 VC10er : Seems as if you have some anger issues you need to deal with. I often fly private jets. I do work for Embraer Exec jet division. There is a differenc
39 VC10er : Catering on UA p.s. has taken a step back in business and Y+. I think F is ok still. They used to give out a fruit or deli plate before arrival. And
40 LAXintl : Dream all you want, however VX also does not generally serve a 2nd meal in F-class. On the AM West Coast departures its breakfast service and thats i
41 GenYBusTrvlr : I split my time between New York and San Francisco so I spend more time on transcon flights than I'd prefer. (3 to 10 round trips per month depending
42 fbgdavidson : Rather presumptuous of you! What on earth are you on about? I am mature enough to understand opinions, and I know people do enjoy the p.s. product bu
43 United1 : I agree with you that they need to up the food service on P.S. in Y but as for eliminating the second service in J I think that was one of the smarte
44 bioyuki : I beg to differ. F/C on a p.s. flight is nothing like flying on a private jet. It's basically international F/C on a domestic route.
45 laca773 : Thank you for your first hand observations. I appreciate what you have to say. I'm glad someone finally admitted what UA p.s. Y+ really is-nothing at
46 Schweigend : VX is really the one UA should guard against -- "not good as p.s." as you say, but for how long? That is sad. The new UAL should deploy new-build Boe
47 washingtonian : Related question: What kind of seats did United install on PS back in 2004 or so? Were they comparable then with its International First & Busines
48 United1 : F class is an angled lie flat seat that would have fallen between the fully flat beds on the 744/772 fleets and the recliner seats on the 763 fleets
49 AADC10 : I think p.s. will stay the same. It is a specialty service for business passengers between LAX/SFO and JFK. It is their lowest capacity transcontinent
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