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Great Lakes Network: Do The Changes Work?  
User currently offlineHAJflyer From Switzerland, joined Sep 2005, 1473 posts, RR: 9
Posted (3 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 3075 times:

Great Lakes Airlines has recently made some substantial changes to their network in the west (CA, NV, AZ), e.g. by

Abandoning ONT and shifting flights to VIS (Visalia), MCE (Merced) and PRC (Prescott) to LAX
Serving ELY (Ely, NV) from LAS instead of DEN
Serving KGM (Kingman) from PHX instead of LAS
Serving PGA (Page) from both LAS and PHX

Are these changes working out for them? Are the bookings and load factors up?

16 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineFATFlyer From United States of America, joined May 2001, 5801 posts, RR: 15
Reply 1, posted (3 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 2924 times:

The actual flight shift from ONT to LAX for VIS and MCE just happened yesterday (May 15). I haven't heard how bookings were going yet. But VIS-LAX operated by Skywest on Brasilias saw as many as 25,000 to 30,000 annual passengers before it ended vs the roughly 6,000 VIS-ONT had last year. There should be better potential with the shift.


"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain
User currently offlineHAJflyer From Switzerland, joined Sep 2005, 1473 posts, RR: 9
Reply 2, posted (3 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 2861 times:

Quoting FATFlyer (Reply 1):
VIS-LAX operated by Skywest on Brasilias saw as many as 25,000 to 30,000

That is quite an impressive number given the proximity of VIS to FAT and BFL. Did this former Skywest service operate as "United Express"?


User currently offlineUSXguy From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 1013 posts, RR: 5
Reply 3, posted (3 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 2684 times:

well their systemwide numbers are all looking better, considering they've dumped all the "under bid until all the other airlines have died" syndrome of MKE, STL, and MCI flying.

One of my friends flew some of the STL markets (used to be a Regions Air pilot) and said he'd fly 6 segments a day and sometimes carry only 3 people.



xx
User currently offlineFATFlyer From United States of America, joined May 2001, 5801 posts, RR: 15
Reply 4, posted (3 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 2652 times:

Quoting HAJflyer (Reply 2):
That is quite an impressive number given the proximity of VIS to FAT and BFL. Did this former Skywest service operate as "United Express"?

Yes it was UAX service. After 9/11 the service was changed from VIS-LAX non-stop to instead operate VIS-FAT-LAX. The VIS flights were also retimed to operate 2 flights only 2 or 3 hours apart in the middle of the day with the FAT stop, I believe something like 1PM and 3PM departures from VIS.

Those changes basically reduced VIS demand since passengers chose to just drive to FAT or BFL, especially if they wanted morning or late afternoon connections at LAX.



"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain
User currently offlinebjorn14 From Norway, joined Feb 2010, 3422 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (3 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 2630 times:

IMHO, everything probably should go through one hub LAS or LAX for operational efficiency.


"I want to know the voice of God the rest is just details" --A. Einstein
User currently offlineUSXguy From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 1013 posts, RR: 5
Reply 6, posted (3 years 3 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 2471 times:

another problem with Modesto & Visalia is the morning & evening fog... that's why Skywest moved to afternoon flights. It doesn't help if you try to do a morning flight and cancel 50 to 75% of the time..


xx
User currently offlineFATFlyer From United States of America, joined May 2001, 5801 posts, RR: 15
Reply 7, posted (3 years 3 months 2 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 2390 times:

Quoting USXguy (Reply 6):
another problem with Modesto & Visalia is the morning & evening fog... that's why Skywest moved to afternoon flights. It doesn't help if you try to do a morning flight and cancel 50 to 75% of the time..

The fog season at VIS is a few months in the winter and roughly something like 30-40 days per year have visibility problems.

It does not explain having flights 2 hours apart in the middle of the afternoon the rest of the year.

VIS always had morning and late afternoon flights from any carrier that served it except for the last couple of years of Skywest.



"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain
User currently offlineHAJflyer From Switzerland, joined Sep 2005, 1473 posts, RR: 9
Reply 8, posted (3 years 3 months 2 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 2187 times:

Quoting FATFlyer (Reply 7):
IMHO, everything probably should go through one hub LAS or LAX for operational efficiency

I personally think their current set up with four "focus cities" (LAX, LAS, PHX, ABQ) makes more sense than many of the previous route structures they have had out west in the recent past.

If one of these cities had to go, LAS would be the prime candidate to get the axe IMHO as only one destination (ELY) currently served from LAS could not be served successfully from another "focus city" (I am aware that they served ELY from DEN via CNY (Moab, Canyonlands) until recently, but in terms of load factors that route was not exactly a huge success.)

Quoting USXguy (Reply 6):
another problem with Modesto & Visalia is the morning & evening fog

Doesn't the fog affect BFL and FAT as well or are VIS and MCE less well equipped in term of the ILS thus requiring higher minimum visibilities?


User currently offlineThe777Man From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 6558 posts, RR: 55
Reply 9, posted (3 years 3 months 2 weeks ago) and read 1981 times:

UA codeshares on the LAX-VIS-MCE route for connections beyond LAX eg no local traffic LAX-VIS-MCE on UA flight number.

That should hopefully help the passenger count. There's a nice connection to LHR for example via LAX.

The777Man



Need a Boeing 777 Firing Order....Further to fly....CI, MU, LX and LH 777s
User currently offlineHAJflyer From Switzerland, joined Sep 2005, 1473 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (3 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 1810 times:

Quoting The777Man (Reply 9):
UA code-shares on the LAX-VIS-MCE route for connections beyond LAX eg no local traffic LAX-VIS-MCE on UA flight number.

It will be interesting to see to what extent the mix between local "point to point" and connecting passengers will be affected by shifting the VIS and MCE flights from ONT to a focus city of their code share partner.


User currently offlinecbphoto From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1552 posts, RR: 5
Reply 11, posted (3 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 1696 times:

Yeah, it is way to early to tell if it will have significant impact on the pax loads or not. I did operate the flights from MCE and VIS to LAX on Tuesday/Wednesday, and the loads to/from LAX were ok. Most I had was about 6 pax, but there were a few empty leggers. Believe it or not, I am actually hearing complaints from people who were liking and accustomed to our ONT flights, especially people terminating in the LA area. Hopefully through our codeshare agreement with UA, the loads will pick up with more pax connecting through LAX, providing our flights are priced right!


ETOPS: Engines Turning or Passengers Swimming
User currently offlineFATFlyer From United States of America, joined May 2001, 5801 posts, RR: 15
Reply 12, posted (3 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 1623 times:

Quoting cbphoto (Reply 11):
Believe it or not, I am actually hearing complaints from people who were liking and accustomed to our ONT flights, especially people terminating in the LA area.

I know there were some Fresno based business travellers who were using the ONT flights since there is no FAT-ONT.



"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain
User currently offline93Sierra From United States of America, joined Apr 2010, 417 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (3 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 1463 times:

Will phx ever be a domicile again?

User currently offlineHAJflyer From Switzerland, joined Sep 2005, 1473 posts, RR: 9
Reply 14, posted (3 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1409 times:

Quoting 93Sierra (Reply 13):
Will phx ever be a domicile again?

Yes, ZK currently flies from PHX to Kingman, Page, Show Low and Farmington.


User currently offlineILUV767 From United States of America, joined May 2000, 3141 posts, RR: 8
Reply 15, posted (3 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 1387 times:

Quoting HAJflyer (Reply 14):
Quoting 93Sierra (Reply 13):
Will phx ever be a domicile again?

Yes, ZK currently flies from PHX to Kingman, Page, Show Low and Farmington.

Doubt it...not with the proximity to FMN as a crew base.


User currently offlinecbphoto From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1552 posts, RR: 5
Reply 16, posted (3 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 1371 times:

Quoting FATFlyer (Reply 12):
I know there were some Fresno based business travellers who were using the ONT flights since there is no FAT-ONT.

Yeah, ONT did serve a nice niche for travelers not wanting to go through LAX, especially from other parts of California. Talking to some of the gate agents, they actually said the loads were beginning to increase to ONT, only to have it switched to LAX. Ohh well, let's see what happens.

[0quote=93Sierra,reply=13]Will phx ever be a domicile again?[/quote]

As far a crew domicile, that's a million dollar question. Crews would love to have it as a domicile over Farmington any day, but FMN is a maintenance base, so odds are they will keep FMN as a crew base. With the shift in flying further west, we might just see another base opening up, in either LAS or PHX. With the addition of DEN-CNY-PGA-LAS flights, FMN is slowly loosing its strategic position for the flying out west, as more DEN crews are operating the west flying. Either way, we will see what happens!



ETOPS: Engines Turning or Passengers Swimming
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