type-rated From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 20056 times:
A news report on television said that Southwest Airlines has been in talks with the Houston city airport management about adding an international terminal at HOU. It stated that Southwest said they intended to start flights to the Caribbean and South America if they can get the facilities. The airport system manager thinks it would be a great idea. There is a proposal being created to be discussed on May 9 to determine the feasibility of it all.
However, Gordon Bethune thinks adding an international terminal to HOU would fracture the city and break the air travel economic boon the city is now enjoying.
The story hasn't made it to the news website yet, I'll post the link when it does.
KC135TopBoom From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 12158 posts, RR: 51
Reply 1, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 19857 times:
But HOU isn't the international airport in Houston, IAH is. WN just doesn't want to use IAH because it is more expensive. Seems to me the City of Houston can cut a deal with WN on their international flying.
FlyingSicilian From Italy, joined Mar 2009, 1367 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 19843 times:
I saw it on the local ABC local 13 station and they are to show more this evening.
I'm "torn" on the subject. I have discussed the issue with people at Co/UA and WN and am still weighing both sides. I'd be interested to see the study results (and methodology).
Would it dilute the large UA (and other foreign carrier) presence at IAH or would it mainly stimulate more int'l traffic and provide more connections to places to AUS and DAL and OKC via WN causing both airports to flourish.
I haven't decided yet
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type-rated From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 19653 times:
I expected maybe some Caribbean service and maybe Cancun from Southwest, but not South America.
The airport system which must approve adding customs to HOU seems happy with the idea. Now the question is who is going to pay for the International Terminal.
And why do they need an international terminal, wouldn't a handful of segregated gates do just fine in the current terminal?
yellowtail From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 6220 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 18545 times:
Quoting type-rated (Reply 4):
I expected maybe some Caribbean service and maybe Cancun from Southwest, but not South America.
Are you kidding...this will not be a token effort....you need to look only to IAH and UA and (at the range of the 73G/8s) and see which markets WN would go after...remember WN has a lot of possible feed at IAH
MEX, CUN, MTY, GDL, GUA, SAL, SAP, BZE, TGU, PTY, SJO, MGA, POS, BOG, MDE, POS, KIN, MBJ etc etc...
Houston makes an ideal connecting hub.......centrally located
When in doubt, hold on to your altitude. No-one has ever collided with the sky.
steeler83 From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 9236 posts, RR: 21
Reply 8, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 18507 times:
Quoting usflyguy (Reply 3): If it doesn't happen at HOU, it will go to a different city and I'm sure the airport system and city don't want that...
BTW... New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, the Bay Area, and S Florida all have more than one "international" airport.
If they don't go with HOU, then I suppose they could make a run at something out of FLL or MCO...
I imagine WN would use 738s to fly Caribbean and S. American routes from either local... I know AA flies to some northern S. American destinations wit the 738, or at least I think they do (unless I'm wrong and that they're 757s). Wait, I know CO flies IAH-South America with 738s...
Do not bring stranger girt into your room. The stranger girt is dangerous, it will hurt your life.
crAAzy From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 799 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 18073 times:
A lot of "ifs" for HOU and would people really pony up the money for a new international teminal when they have IAH?
While SA seems like a natural growth place for WN as it's US market has matured, but HOU seems like the ideal place for SW to launch South American Service. However, this still seems like years in the making if it's going to happen at HOU so I'll believe it when I see it.
aznmadsci From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 3681 posts, RR: 6
Reply 13, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 17743 times:
I guess my first question would be where would they build this "international terminal"? I could see it as a concourse where the old A concourse used to be. Those continuing on to domestic flights could then end up going through security at the main security area.
While it would affect IAH & UA, I think it would take passengers away from carriers like Vivaaerobus and possibly AM and TA. Also while not as cheap, they can definitely poach some of Spirit's customers .
If this all happens, it might actually make me want to take a visit out to HOU a few years from now!
The journey of life is not based on the accomplishments, but the experience.
Quoting type-rated (Reply 4): And why do they need an international terminal, wouldn't a handful of segregated gates do just fine in the current terminal?
I wouldn't take the phrasing "international terminal" in a news story any more literally than one would take "runway" or "tarmac." IIRC the master plan for the airport includes another concourse on or near the footprint of the now-demolished Concourse A; that new concourse would likely incorporate international gates.
Quoting type-rated (Thread starter): However, Gordon Bethune thinks adding an international terminal to HOU would fracture the city and break the air travel economic boon the city is now enjoying.
I don't exactly understand how international service from HOU "fracture[s]" the city any more than the multiple business districts like Downtown, the West Loop/Galleria, or Woodlands Town Center. It would, however, force CO to compete for international traffic (to Mexico/Central America/near South America/Caribbean) from Houston, which is the real issue.
Quoting type-rated (Reply 4): The airport system which must approve adding customs to HOU seems happy with the idea. Now the question is who is going to pay for the International Terminal.
IMO if WN wants an international facility at HOU, they should be the ones paying for it (along with any other carriers which might want to use it).
WN doesn't want to use IAH for international service because they have no presence at IAH; they'd have to fill flights entirely with O&D traffic. At HOU, they have over 130 daily flights to help feed any potential international service.
OB1504 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 3392 posts, RR: 6
Reply 19, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 16990 times:
Quoting steeler83 (Reply 8): If they don't go with HOU, then I suppose they could make a run at something out of FLL or MCO...
Quoting yellowtail (Reply 9):
They are not interested in FLL for intl as of right now...ditto for MCO
Even if they were interested in FLL, the only terminal with international gates is on the opposite side of Southwest's terminal, and it's already being used to capacity by Spirit and other airlines' international flights. In terms of arrivals, it's a madhouse between 6 and 7 PM, when every international gate is occupied.
dfwrevolution From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 984 posts, RR: 51
Reply 20, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 16837 times:
Quoting ATL (Reply 16): So that would be the first time Southwest flies out of the US? Mhm... Why was not doing so up until now beneficial for them? And why isn't it anymore?
Because adding international capabilities increases their overhead costs. To date, WN has stayed focused on the U.S. market because they have had enough growth opportunities that there has been no reason to go international.
Quoting ScottB (Reply 15): IMO if WN wants an international facility at HOU, they should be the ones paying for it (along with any other carriers which might want to use it).
I wouldn't put it past WN if the airport starts dragging its heels. WN planned to finance the construction of the BFI terminal they proposed around 2005.
ATLgaUSA From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 145 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 16176 times:
Quoting DariusBieber (Reply 21): That would be my guess. Both of them are already deemed an international airport with Customs. However, DAL may also be an option for WN, once 2014 comes around with the end of the Wright Amendment.
Neither New Orleans nor San Antonio have the corporate base necessary to sustain international operations to multiple cities. Southwest will use a city with substantial O&D to many South American cities as its South American jumping off point. It'll be some combination of LAX, PHX, HOU, MCO, and/or FLL. I would also expect a number of MDW-Mexico flights. New Orleans and San Antonio may get a one-off flight to Cancun or, in the case of New Orleans, San Pedro Sula, but neither city will see multiple international departures per day.