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Air France Likely To Axe Tahiti  
User currently offlineju068 From Vanuatu, joined Aug 2009, 2640 posts, RR: 6
Posted (2 years 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 20235 times:
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Good afternoon,

It seems that Air France is considering cancelling its Los Angeles - Papeete leg as it has been chronically losing money on it for the past seven years. At the moment Air France is negotiating with 89 members of its personel which operate the leg in order to reach an equillibrium on the route. If an agreement is not reached the airline will have no other choice but to leave the market. This decision is in line with the Transformation 2015 programme where Air France is hoping to cut €2 billion in expenses, including 5,000 jobs.

I guess this comes as great news for Air Tahiti Nui which will be left as the sole operator from between Paris and Papeete. Air Tahiti Nui also operates the route via Los Angeles.

For those interested you can find the original link here:
http://www.lefigaro.fr/flash-eco/201...echit-a-desservir-la-polynesie.php

Best,

JU068

68 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinemogandoCI From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (2 years 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 20088 times:

Quoting ju068 (Thread starter):
I guess this comes as great news for Air Tahiti Nui which will be left as the sole operator from between Paris and Papeete. Air Tahiti Nui also operates the route via Los Angeles.

But that sucks for consumers. Any flight from US to PPT is already through-the-roof gouging, and the last thing we need is monopoly pricing power.

One can do HA but even they're billing you an arm and leg for the prestige of going to Bora Bora


User currently offlineauroralives From Canada, joined Nov 2007, 182 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (2 years 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 20004 times:

I'm having trouble correlating these 2 statements...

Quoting ju068 (Thread starter):
cancelling its Los Angeles - Papeete leg as it has been chronically losing money on it
Quoting mogandoCI (Reply 1):
Any flight from US to PPT is already through-the-roof gouging

Is this strictly a yields issue ??


User currently offlineju068 From Vanuatu, joined Aug 2009, 2640 posts, RR: 6
Reply 3, posted (2 years 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 19928 times:
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Quoting auroralives (Reply 2):
Is this strictly a yields issue ??

It also depends how many seats they sell from Paris to Papeete, maybe most of their passengers disembark in Los Angeles. Plus with Air France's cost structure it must have been hard to make a profit on this kind of route.


User currently offlinesw733 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6324 posts, RR: 9
Reply 4, posted (2 years 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 19906 times:

Quoting mogandoCI (Reply 1):
Any flight from US to PPT is already through-the-roof gouging

I checked for late-October, LAX-PPT on TN, and even just over one month out, I can get a return ticket for $1592 all in. Not too bad if you ask me. For late June 2013, it's only about $30 more.


User currently offlineblueflyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 4002 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (2 years 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 19651 times:
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Quoting ju068 (Thread starter):
At the moment Air France is negotiating with 89 members of its personel which operate the leg in order to reach an equillibrium on the route.

Does this mean Air France has 89 employees dedicated to the route, not flying any other route? That seems pretty strange.



I've got $h*t to do
User currently offlinePPVRA From Brazil, joined Nov 2004, 8964 posts, RR: 39
Reply 6, posted (2 years 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 19576 times:

Quoting auroralives (Reply 2):
I'm having trouble correlating these 2 statements...

Quoting ju068 (Thread starter):
cancelling its Los Angeles - Papeete leg as it has been chronically losing money on it
Quoting mogandoCI (Reply 1):
Any flight from US to PPT is already through-the-roof gouging

Is this strictly a yields issue ??

High prices (monopoly or not) doesn't indicate a profitable operation. Raising them even more may not necessarily improve anything, either.

Some markets just don't work.



"If goods do not cross borders, soldiers will" - Frederic Bastiat
User currently offlineusflyer msp From United States of America, joined May 2000, 2124 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (2 years 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 19561 times:

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 5):
Does this mean Air France has 89 employees dedicated to the route, not flying any other route? That seems pretty strange.

AF has a crew base in PPT that solely flies the PPT-LAX route.


User currently offlinemercure1 From French Polynesia, joined Jul 2008, 1492 posts, RR: 2
Reply 8, posted (2 years 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 19449 times:

This actually is not new news.

AF has indeed been in negative situation in French Polynesia. About 1-year ago there was long interview with AF head saying they would be reviewing their options.
(discussed in this thread - http://www.airliners.net/aviation-fo...ral_aviation/print.main?id=5345790 )

AF has consider making a business venture with TN, but as you know TN has big problem itself.

Regarding staffs, AF purchase large infrastructure from UTA including a crew base. I believe 89 must be crew count, but total staff is closer to 125 (as indicated by AF boss).


And no - this is not great news for TN. Even it does not want to be left in monopoly situation. As covered in other threads the loss of capacity, and choice will make entire islands already depressed tourism and economic situation even worse. Lack of options beyond TN has become a big problem, and loss of AF a good alternate choice will exasperate the situation.


User currently offlineAesma From France, joined Nov 2009, 6665 posts, RR: 11
Reply 9, posted (2 years 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 19256 times:

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 5):
Does this mean Air France has 89 employees dedicated to the route, not flying any other route? That seems pretty strange.

Well, PPT is on the other side of the planet from mainland France, not a short commute !



New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
User currently offlinejetMarc From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 554 posts, RR: 2
Reply 10, posted (2 years 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 19077 times:

AF PPT crews also work LAX-CDG... AFCabinCrew, where are you??


"Sucka, I'm gonna send you out on Knuckle Airlines. Fist Class!!" ~ Mr. T
User currently offlineual777uk From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2005, 3356 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (2 years 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 19076 times:

Quoting Aesma (Reply 9):
Well, PPT is on the other side of the planet from mainland France, not a short commute !

And your point is? They simply operate the PPT - LAX route, 89 employess or 125, whatever it is, no wonder they cannot make money on the route, thats a huge head count. I dread to think what the break even is before they can even dream of getting in the black.


User currently offlinejetMarc From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 554 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (2 years 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 18962 times:

I dont think 89 crews are that much. Youd have about 14 in PPT to work flt to LAX, 14 laying over in LAX for the continuation to CDG, along with 14 in LAX to work flt back to PPT and 14 in CDG to work flight to LAX, so, you'd have 68 PPT FAs right there alone on duty, not to mention the crews needed for the next days flights.


"Sucka, I'm gonna send you out on Knuckle Airlines. Fist Class!!" ~ Mr. T
User currently offlinelightsaber From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 13134 posts, RR: 100
Reply 13, posted (2 years 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 18790 times:
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Quoting ju068 (Thread starter):
I guess this comes as great news for Air Tahiti Nui which will be left as the sole operator from between Paris and Papeete. Air Tahiti Nui also operates the route via Los Angeles.

   It is really bad news for Tahiti tourism. How many more hotels will close? If anything, this is good news for HA. One question, does HA have a partner to transfer passengers from Europe to LAX? Perhaps they will work with AF?

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 6):
High prices (monopoly or not) doesn't indicate a profitable operation. Raising them even more may not necessarily improve anything, either.

Some markets just don't work.

Exactly. Unless TN gets its cost structure in hand, demand will shrink. There are *many* other tourist destination options. In a depressed tourist market, exclusive and unique is good. Prices above the perceived product is bad...

Quoting mercure1 (Reply 8):
will make entire islands already depressed tourism and economic situation even worse. Lack of options beyond TN has become a big problem, and loss of AF a good alternate choice will exasperate the situation.
Quoting auroralives (Reply 2):
I'm having trouble correlating these 2 statements...

If costs are out of hand, one can have high fares, decent load factors, and still lose money.

For myself, unless TN improves, I see the LAX-PPT going to HA. Does AF partner with anyone in the pacific that flies to PPT? Could they divert the passengers the other way around the world?

Lightsaber



Societies that achieve a critical mass of ideas achieve self sustaining growth; others stagnate.
User currently offlineAesma From France, joined Nov 2009, 6665 posts, RR: 11
Reply 14, posted (2 years 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 18732 times:

Quoting ual777uk (Reply 11):
And your point is? They simply operate the PPT - LAX route

My point is that AF hubs are in France. There is no other route around PPT for the crew to operate.



New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
User currently offlinemercure1 From French Polynesia, joined Jul 2008, 1492 posts, RR: 2
Reply 15, posted (2 years 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 18732 times:

AF is partners with Air Calin which does Noumea to Papeete.

But is unrealistic to expect AF pax to fly CDG-NRT-NOU-PPT. Same with CDG-USA-HNL-PPT on Hawaiian.

If FP government would not have caused problems for, the market is ready again for someone like Corsair to operate to FP again.

One thing to remember is metropolitan France customers have many many choices where to vacation - from Carribes, Indian Ocean, Reunion/Madagascar, etc all nonstop.
Making FP more than 1-stop will further reduce interest.


User currently offline777222LR From United States of America, joined Feb 2012, 134 posts, RR: 1
Reply 16, posted (2 years 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 18706 times:

Isn't this AF route heavily subsidized by the French government, or is that RUN? Sad to see it possibly leaving. Will they codeshare with Tahiti Nui?

User currently offlineRoseflyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 9643 posts, RR: 52
Reply 17, posted (2 years 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 18606 times:

The current schedule for AF is horrible for connections. The 7pm arrival into LAX is too late to get much feed to anywhere other than redeye departures. With such limited service, PPT would be getting feed from multiple airlines in LAX, yet it’s hard to find much leaving LAX at 9pm other than east coast red eye flights. An 11am arrival into LAX would hit the early afternoon rush at LAX.

I would think that LAX-PPT should be a daylight flight and PPT-LAX should be a red eye. That would allow plenty of connections.



If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
User currently offlinemercure1 From French Polynesia, joined Jul 2008, 1492 posts, RR: 2
Reply 18, posted (2 years 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 18511 times:

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 17):
The current schedule for AF is horrible for connections.

AF does not need connections at LAX.

Main reason flight operates and is timed for is for the Metropolitan France to French Polynesia passengers.
Think of LAX as being a fuel stop location in the middle. Yes some people use the flight to/from USA, but bulk is from end to end.

According to AF country manager they had 91% load factor component on route. Its not a matter of passengers, but more the cost inherit of operating the long line.


User currently offlinemogandoCI From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (2 years 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 18430 times:

Would this be a perfect route for DL to take over as part of the DL-AF-KL JV ? Or is their JV only restricted to TATL ?

[Edited 2012-09-17 10:21:10]

User currently offlineTWA902fly From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 3128 posts, RR: 4
Reply 20, posted (2 years 4 days ago) and read 18198 times:

Quoting mogandoCI (Reply 19):
Would this be a perfect route for DL to take over as part of the DL-AF-KL JV ? Or is their JV only restricted to TATL ?

If I remember correctly, the LAX-PPT route is covered under the joint venture AF/DL. If this is the case, I imagine a DL 767 can do the job for much cheaper, and without needing a dedicated 89 crew members. I have a feeling when AF says they are "considering their options" this may be one of them.

'902



life wasn't worth the balance, or the crumpled paper it was written on
User currently offlineairproxx From France, joined Jun 2008, 636 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (2 years 4 days ago) and read 17640 times:

Quoting auroralives (Reply 2):
Is this strictly a yields issue ??

No, loads on the route have never been good for the last 10 years, and I don't think it will get better any time soon...
There was a time when AF used to operate a daily B744 service, now it's only a B772 on a weekly base, plus the extra JV seats on TN flights.

AF axing this route is probably the oddest and silliest decision, considering the fact that Air Tahiti Nui has been bleeding money for ages, with a poor service and out-of-age operating costs. This airline is living only for a state-sponsored sake, and if there's something to suppress quickly IMO, it's this nonsense airline.
AF should take over the whole passengers, with Polynesian government letting TN go to its own fate. End of story.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 13):
If costs are out of hand, one can have high fares, decent load factors, and still lose money.

That's what's happening with TN since ages!



If you can meet with triumph and disaster, and treat those two impostors just the same
User currently offlineSonomaFlyer From United States of America, joined Apr 2010, 1796 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (2 years 4 days ago) and read 17502 times:
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At 4,095nm from LAX to PPT, a 767 could handle this route nicely. It could be another route that starts at JFK or ATL and goes to LAX before continuing to PPT. This would be with the DL/AF/KL joint venture.

User currently offlineg500 From United States of America, joined Oct 2011, 969 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (2 years 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 17178 times:
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If Air France cancels LAX-PPT, Air Tahiti is "going to party like is 1999"....

What type of passengers does Air France mainly carry between LAX-PPT?? French nationals, or Americans?


User currently offlinelightsaber From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 13134 posts, RR: 100
Reply 24, posted (2 years 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 17060 times:
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I like the idea of a DL 767 to PPT. Would AF re-time their flight?

Quoting airproxx (Reply 21):
Quoting lightsaber (Reply 13):
If costs are out of hand, one can have high fares, decent load factors, and still lose money.

That's what's happening with TN since ages!

Yes. But as long as TN operates, no other airlines will really have viable service to Tahiti.
Ironic as doesn't the French government help subsidize TN? Note I'm asking as that might be out of date information.

Quoting mercure1 (Reply 18):
Think of LAX as being a fuel stop location in the middle.

I am amazed to how close LAX is to the great circle route CDG-PPT. No additional nautical miles of air route!    It is almost in the middle:
LAX-CDG: 4927nm
LAX-PPT: 3559 nm

for grins:
HNL-PPT: 2737nm
But CDG-HNL-PPT is 300nm further and CDG-HNL is an uneconomic 6468nm.

Lightsaber



Societies that achieve a critical mass of ideas achieve self sustaining growth; others stagnate.
25 jfk777 : This is the French version of flying to Australia, CDG to LAX is a much more premuim market then LAX to PPT. AF has no business flying to Tahiti. If t
26 airsmiles : I'm not clear about such things but would there be any ETOPS limitations for a B767 to fly LAX-PPT? i.e. could it operate the route direct or would it
27 azjubilee : HA has flown LAX-PPT in the past (DC10s) for Renaissance cruises so it isn't out of the realm of possibility for them to do it again. The big question
28 mercure1 : AF never had daily service, let alone on a 747. Even UTA never had daily. LAX frequency was 2-3 weekly normally. Also today is 3x weekly on 777, not w
29 airproxx : Correct, AF used to operate the route with B744 and A343, due to ETOPS limitations. Now AF operates the route with B772, they can't go direct and hav
30 jfk777 : But does the fares paid by these high load factors pay the costs all the way from Paris to PPT ? The answer seems to be NO.
31 airproxx : And AF/TN keeps losing money on that route... 91%, I don't know where you get your data from, but based on what I saw on board, especially for the AF
32 LAXintl : Air NZ operated 767s between LAX and PPT for ages. So the type can do it. NZ today still does LAX-RAR an even longer segment. As far as AF having busi
33 Post contains links mercure1 : Service d'Etat de l'aviation civile en Polynésie française. Also news interview with AF boss in previous link I supply. Airfare between FP and metr
34 lightsaber : This makes me wonder if NZ should restart AKL-PPT-LAX service? But where is the profit? Tahiti hotels are closing for a reason. It is for Tahiti to fi
35 LAXintl : I'm not sure what the argument on Air France loads are. DOT numbers also confirm they are indeed very healthy for AF on the LAX-PPT segment. I come up
36 Post contains images Viscount724 : LAX-HNL-PPT is more than 1000 nm (28%) further than nonstop (HNL is west of PPT). HA would have to offer competitive fares but carry the passenger al
37 azjubilee : You're quoting two different people, making two different points, to make your own point Viscount. All I'm saying is that HA has flown LAX-PPT in the
38 PSA1011 : Would United consider starting LAX/SFO-PPT?
39 Aesma : They're both subsidized, along with every other route to oversea territories, and even metropolitan ones if there is a need (Corsica for example). Th
40 gigneil : Since nobody seems to be able to make money, why would they consider such a thing? Sounds like a ruuul bad idea. NS
41 Post contains images lightsaber : 1,400 sounds very close to cost (even at the spectacular load factors). I'm not thinking TN is that economical. I think HA with one stop and quite a
42 Rara : Surely they operate the CDG-LAX part with CDG-based crews? And no, 89 crew aren't much at all for a 777 route, even if it's just one route. Once off-
43 blueflyer : Why hasn't the crew base been closed already? Too politically sensitive? Tied to local subsidies? If the PPT crew does fly the route all the way to C
44 jetMARC : Waiting for AFCabinCrew - he has all the goss... From what I know, the pilots are all CDG based, ends up being a 9 day trip. PPT crews fly all the way
45 lightsaber : That is not economical. That sounds like the economics low frequency airlines had to Australia... The hotel costs destroyed the trip economics. If yo
46 travelin man : Interesting... just looking at Expedia I am seeing $2700 r/t LAX-PPT on AF, compared with $1600 r/t on TN (or AA codeshare). And that is looking out i
47 koruman : Absolute nonsense. Every carrier which has operated LAX-PPT in the loast fifteen years has experienced well over 95% average loadings in Business Cla
48 Aesma : I'm guessing part of the problem is that subsidies are linked to conditions on local jobs and stuff like that. I would guess that the flight you look
49 YULWinterSkies : Yep, 89 sounds about the right number for a long-haul base, even if flying one single route. But yeah, no wonder they can't make money on the route,
50 nickofatlanta : Given the joint venture, surely a DL 763, as previously noted, would be the most logical fit, as the risk would be spread between all of the joint ve
51 AF185 : Why couldn't AF and TN codeshare on the CDG-PPT route? AF taking care of the CDG-LAX leg, and TN focusing on the LAX-PPT leg?
52 AF Cabin Crew : Ia Orana all ! Could reply any earlier as I was flying CDG-LAX and just got back to the hotel. AF loads are healthy, earnings are healthy, costs is a
53 ju068 : Yes, but your fare is in Euros while his is in Dollars, if you conver the Air France fare the difference is just $400 which is really not a lot. So i
54 Post contains images EA CO AS : AS could always try 3X weekly SEA-HNL-PPT or SEA-OGG-PPT service with 738s.
55 nzrich : WEll star is covered just via AKL with NZ
56 PHX787 : I want to bring up one thing....I heard TN is continually losing money... if AF drops the route and TN goes under....what happens then?
57 ZKOJH : If AF go then TN will go too? leavers the market wide open ! but probably NZ will fill it but it won't happen till after 2014, FJ could fill the gap?
58 Post contains links lightsaber : Thank you for your perspective. The issue is the low frequency. There is simply no way to get a low CASM with 2X/week service. The crew are sitting i
59 mercure1 : A little bit more news from the local papers AF confirmed that its Tahiti route running defecit and it could not guarantee service beyond March 2013.
60 Post contains images lightsaber : We have a disconnect on the earnings. I would be shocked, with today's oil prices and the economy, if such a flight were profitable at the crew costs
61 AF Cabin Crew : AF 777s touch down in PPT 3 times a week, on wednesday, friday and sunday. AF codeshare with TN once a week. All cabin crew operating PPT-LAX-PPT are
62 Post contains links AF Cabin Crew : Sorry in French, AF CEO at TOP Resa : http://www.tahiti-infos.com/Air-Fran...ervir-la-Polynesie-PDG_a56835.html
63 mercure1 : = revenue is good, but cost are terrible.
64 LAXintl : I say, go back to pre merger UTA days. AF operates CDG-LAX segment, TN operates LAX-PPT. Flights are timed to nicely connect in both directions. Same
65 Post contains images lightsaber : Thank you. I appreciate the correction. Wouldn't that be 48 or 72 hours. Lightsaber
66 AF Cabin Crew : Yes you are right, I was just thinking of the 1 full 24h they were getting in Tahiti, forgetting that they arrived the day before and leaving the nex
67 EA CO AS : Nah, AS doesn't like tag-ons. They increase your CASM.
68 HAL : You are forgetting that when they are flying, it's a whole lot of hours in one shot, going PPT-LAX-CDG-LAX-PPT. If you get a lot of flying in during
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