gen2stew From United States of America, joined Dec 2011, 83 posts, RR: 0 Posted (9 months 3 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 15782 times:
While on a WN flight I overheard a conversation between a few pilots and cabin crew that the -800 is not working out as planned and that WN had deferred future deliveries to the -MAX. Any truth to this?
The only things PAX see is the fare thay paid and the seat in front of them. Gotta love the race to the bottom!
spiritair97 From United States of America, joined Jan 2011, 1231 posts, RR: 1 Reply 2, posted (9 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 15073 times:
I know that I don't work for WN, but I did chat with a pilot during my layover in BWI a few weeks ago and he said the exact opposite. He said that WN all the NG aircraft, including the -800. He said the -800 was working out better than they had expected. Granted the crews aren't always the most informed, this guy seemed very knowledgeable.
WN's plan was indeed to take as many -800's as they could within a year, starting with I believe the count was around 34. However due to the cost within WN (not so much -800's cost), WN needed to defer the deliveries to help save some money and control the companies cost. They have a target in mind they want to bring in before WN can consider expanding/growing without cutting a single route or station.
By deferring the -800's, WN has slowed down the -300 retirement, I believe the -500's are still leaving at a rate but I am not sure how fast. (As lightsaber guessed correctly)
WN plans to keep the fleet quite stagnant, by getting rid of the 717's, halting the -300 retirement and slowing down the -800 deliveries there won't be too much aircraft fleet growth in terms of numbers.
As many have noticed and said over and over, WN's cost is not just high, but also rising, and WN is acting very quickly and reacting in a way to increase revenue in every way possible to control the high cost going on at the company.
Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
strfyr51 From United States of America, joined Apr 2012, 488 posts, RR: 0 Reply 5, posted (9 months 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 14091 times:
rigning in costs is a no brainer. WN is going the responsible route as they really have nobody that they need to compete with. They are in a Niche of their own and nobody is going to usurp them anytime soon
toltommy From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 3220 posts, RR: 4 Reply 14, posted (9 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 11911 times:
Quoting lightsaber (Reply 3): If anything, I expect WN to slow growth by retiring 733s when they are due to heavy maintenance.
I agree, but can only slow so much since they've committed to replacing the 717 1 to 1. By agreeing to do that, they've made it hard to trim any excess capacity like DL and UA were able to do in their mergers.
Quoting strfyr51 (Reply 5): WN is going the responsible route as they really have nobody that they need to compete with. They are in a Niche of their own and nobody is going to usurp them anytime soon
But they do compete with the legacy carriers now. They changed the business model away from peripheral airport and now serve business centers direct. Plus their labor costs are now among the highest in the domestic industry. They need more -800's to lower costs.
737tdi From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 466 posts, RR: 0 Reply 15, posted (9 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 11081 times:
Quoting toltommy (Reply 14): But they do compete with the legacy carriers now. They changed the business model away from peripheral airport and now serve business centers direct. Plus their labor costs are now among the highest in the domestic industry. They need more -800's to lower costs.
Now how the heck do you know that? Not picking on you. I just here this alot on here. How does one determine the cost of employees at a company? What if I do twice the work of another airlines employee? Does that make my hourly wage 50% less? Look at the number of employees at WN and compare that with the norm. of other airlines. WN's labor costs per the number of aircraft is well below the other airlines. They now pay some of the best wages to retain and recruit the best they can get. JMO.
Reminds me of when Flight Miniatures went ahead and offered a FL 73G model in the old (1997) colors (of which I purchased) when it turned out later that FL launched their first 73G in their current (then-new) scheme.
Too bad, Flight Miniatures doesn't do similar w/the WN 717; it'd be a lot cheaper to purchase than the one offered by Aim Higher Jets.
"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981
My opinion is that this is the first time that WN has had a "sensitive" airplane with regards to weight and balance. The -700 is stubby and wide. In normal operation, I don't think you can make it so tail heavy that it touches the ground. The -800 might be able to, so you have to be careful. Also, it's a heavier plane that we are used to so landing in MDW and such has caused some weight issues at the departure station. The -800 is a fantastic airplane, but I think that employees thought it would be the end all be all of airplanes and that it'll lift and do anything you give it. When in reality, this is normal operation for nearly every other airline out there.
I also think that it's very popular to hate the -800 at WN. WN doesn't do change well so when it happens, people tend to freak out. I often hear people say, "Oh, I cant stand the -800!" and so I ask why they hate it. Hardly anyone has been able to give me a reason as to why they "hate" it. They usually just stand there and say, "uhhh, umm, it's an -800!" Ok, but what about the plane is so bad? "Ummm, uhhhh.... it's longer!" Yeah, ok....
There's a difference between cost of labor and efficiency of labor. Where labor can be numerically differentiated, ie in gate agents or rampers, efficiency comes into play when we talk about "cost of labor". For example, it is better to have two happy rampers who make $55,000 a year and work as hard as three disgruntled rampers who make $40,000 year (I'm making all these numbers up by the way). The cost of labor may appear higher for the airline who pays its rampers $55,000 a year, but in reality, it's saving money because it's workers try harder.
But when labor cannot be numerically differentiated, efficiency isn't included. The FAA requires X crewmembers to operate a 737-800. WN has X crewmembers, DL has X crewmembers, and so on. If WN pays its employees higher, they might be nicer to the customers, but they are overall doing the same job as the lesser paid crewmembers on other airlines. Thus the cost of labor is higher for WN due to higher wages in some instances.
chrisair From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 1774 posts, RR: 4 Reply 21, posted (9 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 9680 times:
Quoting gen2stew (Thread starter): While on a WN flight I overheard a conversation between a few pilots and cabin crew that the -800 is not working out as planned and that WN had deferred future deliveries to the -MAX.
Well, since pilots are the most informed people at the company, and the FAs are the second most, this must be true...
Quoting QANTAS747-438 (Reply 18): It's currently flown LAX-LAS and it is 175. Not 174.... 175. We have always joked that we could put an -800 on the LAX-LAS route and it would be full too. Well, the Company sure showed us.
I sat next to a few WN FAs on a PHX parking lot bus who were complaining about the 738s. Apparently a lot of employees are non-reving on them "just to fly the -800." They were upset since they had to do non-rev on a multi-stop flight home since "there were too many non-revs flying for no reason" on the 738.
737tdi From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 466 posts, RR: 0 Reply 23, posted (9 months 2 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 8670 times:
Quoting PanAm788 (Reply 19): The FAA requires X crewmembers to operate a 737-800. WN has X crewmembers
I agree with most of your points. Alls I'm saying is that WN uses/employees a much smaller work force for the number of flights/aircraft.
As far as the FAA requiring a certain number of crew members, remember this is only the number required to physically operate the aircraft with passengers. They have no such number regarding mechs., cleaners, ramp agents, ops. agents, etc.. An airline can run as lean as they want as long as all is done correctly.