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Spirit's Phenomenal Growth At DFW  
User currently offlineflaps30 From United States of America, joined May 2009, 287 posts, RR: 0
Posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 6709 times:

It seems over the past year or so that Spirit has quietly built a nice hub at DFW and there are no signs of them slowing down. This reminds me of the growth of WN at Denver. What is the secret to their success besides their low fares. Does AA deem them a threat to their fortress at DFW and has AA resorted to any dirty tricks to drive them out?


every day is a good day to fly
21 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineMKENut From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 699 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 6649 times:

I wish Spirit would come to MKE.

User currently offlineouboy79 From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 4599 posts, RR: 22
Reply 2, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 6537 times:

Quoting flaps30 (Thread starter):
It seems over the past year or so that Spirit has quietly built a nice hub at DFW and there are no signs of them slowing down. This reminds me of the growth of WN at Denver. What is the secret to their success besides their low fares. Does AA deem them a threat to their fortress at DFW and has AA resorted to any dirty tricks to drive them out?

Not much of a threat when it is what...22 nonstop daily flights...sometimes up to around 25 on various days. With the vast majority of it likely being low fare business AA can't afford. It is a nice operation though, don't get me wrong. Smart on NK's part to get it going before the Wright falls away and WN can do many of these markets nonstop themselves from DAL.


User currently offlineF9animal From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 5053 posts, RR: 28
Reply 3, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 6500 times:

AA obviously does not see Spirit as a threat. Now, if Spirit was nabbing business travelers, it would be a bloodbath. Didnt AA go apeshit on Legend?


I Am A Different Animal!!
User currently offlinebeechtobus From United States of America, joined Nov 2011, 313 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 6408 times:

Quoting flaps30 (Thread starter):

" Does AA deem them a threat to their fortress at DFW and has AA resorted to any dirty tricks to drive them out?"

I believe that part of the secret to Spirits sucess in DFW is the fact that they are garnering little attention from AA, yet AA keeps other competitors away that would hinder NK's growth in DFW. Sure, the route map does look impressive but keep in mind that the 22 spokes (eff June 2013) on the route map only represents 28 daily flights, which would be an average WN station. Most cities are 1 daily, some are less than daily, a few (ORD, DEN, FLL, ATL, IAH) are double daily and only LAS is triple daily. This low frequency, coupled with the fact that Spirits low fares tends to create market share as opposed to capture it as its clientele would otherwise drive, take a bus, or not go has so far seen little response from AA. I believe it would be a different story if the likes of JetBlue or Virgin America or Southwest started building up DFW as they tend to push the higher frequencies and they go after the same customer as AA.

[Edited 2013-01-27 20:44:34]

User currently offlinebeechtobus From United States of America, joined Nov 2011, 313 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 6352 times:

Quoting MKENut (Reply 1):

I too would love to see MKE but with ORD less than 80 miles down the road, and Spirit having some large holes in its network (Ohio, the Carolina's, MCI, STL, BNA, MEM, SLC, SEA, maybe a few other west coast cities) I don't see it happening soon. I guess stranger things have happened.


User currently offlineYXwatcherMKE From United States of America, joined May 2007, 1003 posts, RR: 2
Reply 6, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 6160 times:

Quoting MKENut (Reply 1):
I wish Spirit would come to MKE.

        
I would like to see NK in MKE too, but I don't see it happening in 2013. Also other than FLL where would NK Fly to from MKE?



I miss the 60's & 70's when you felt like a guest on the plane not cattle like today
User currently offlineawacsooner From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 1914 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 5733 times:

Folks said the same thing about NK in LAS...all the fanfare was when they added all those routes...then they quietly started paring away without anyone making a peep...the same will happen to DFW.

User currently offlinebeechtobus From United States of America, joined Nov 2011, 313 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 5313 times:

Quoting awacsooner (Reply 7):

Yeah....not quite. The most daily flights Spirit has had out of LAS is 21. Currently they have 20. I wouldnt call a net loss of 1 daily flight since their peak in LAS a "pairing away". Where cities have been cut or reduced (AZA in fact is the only one that has been cut completely), new cities and flights have been added elsewhere. DFW just happened to gain more momentum than LAS and thus has grown much faster.


User currently offlinenkops From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 2665 posts, RR: 6
Reply 9, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 5312 times:

Quoting flaps30 (Thread starter):
Does AA deem them a threat

I think NK actually kind of helps AA by taking away the lowest fare paying pax... AA probably doesnt concern themselves too much with NK right now.

Quoting awacsooner (Reply 7):

I have seen you say that in two threads, you don't like NK do you??  



I have no association with Spirit Airlines
User currently onlinePRAirbus From Puerto Rico, joined Apr 2005, 1139 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 4571 times:

AA frequent business travelers would never fly NK!

User currently offlineOB1504 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 3354 posts, RR: 6
Reply 11, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 4138 times:

Quoting F9animal (Reply 3):
AA obviously does not see Spirit as a threat. Now, if Spirit was nabbing business travelers, it would be a bloodbath. Didnt AA go apeshit on Legend?

   Spirit is picking the absolute bottom feeders in terms of fares--people who have little to no brand loyalty anyway--and leaving the rest to focus on the more lucrative customers.

Quoting beechtobus (Reply 4):

I believe that part of the secret to Spirits sucess in DFW is the fact that they are garnering little attention from AA, yet AA keeps other competitors away that would hinder NK's growth in DFW. Sure, the route map does look impressive but keep in mind that the 22 spokes (eff June 2013) on the route map only represents 28 daily flights, which would be an average WN station. Most cities are 1 daily, some are less than daily, a few (ORD, DEN, FLL, ATL, IAH) are double daily and only LAS is triple daily. This low frequency, coupled with the fact that Spirits low fares tends to create market share as opposed to capture it as its clientele would otherwise drive, take a bus, or not go has so far seen little response from AA. I believe it would be a different story if the likes of JetBlue or Virgin America or Southwest started building up DFW as they tend to push the higher frequencies and they go after the same customer as AA.

   As I've said before, Greyhound has more to fear from Spirit than a legacy carrier does.


User currently offlineRoseflyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 9642 posts, RR: 52
Reply 12, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 3880 times:

It wasn't that long ago when DFW was a full scale hub for DL. It doesn't surprise me that there are a few routes left that can support competition with AA.


If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
User currently offlineSurfandSnow From United States of America, joined Jan 2009, 2866 posts, RR: 30
Reply 13, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 3798 times:

Quoting flaps30 (Thread starter):
It seems over the past year or so that Spirit has quietly built a nice hub at DFW and there are no signs of them slowing down.

No, not yet. But they have pretty much tapped out the low-hanging fruit, that's for sure. I could see a few other things working, like the much rumored BLI (serving Seattle and Vancouver), perhaps a few other popular domestic destinations like AUS, BNA, and SAT. Over the border they could probably do GDL and PVR, maybe even CZM, MZT, MTY, and/or ZIH. However, I don't think they could pull off services from DFW to smaller markets with more limited mass appeal like ABQ, IND, JAX, MCI, MKE, RNO, and TUS... I think they have probably come close to maxing out DFW's potential, as they did at FLL in the mid-2000s...

Quoting flaps30 (Thread starter):
This reminds me of the growth of WN at Denver.

This reminds me of FL's attempt to build a DFW focus city in the mid-2000s. I recall services to the likes of LAS, LAX, and Chicago (MDW), for instance. By the time WN acquired them, they were down to ATL, BWI, and MCO services out of DFW - even service to their MKE hub had flopped. Not saying it can't work, but with a resurgent AA emerging from bankruptcy with a great product and much lower (more competitive) costs, and WN poised to expand from DAL in 2014...

Quoting flaps30 (Thread starter):
What is the secret to their success besides their low fares.

Get people excited about a cheap nonstop fare to Vegas, Cancun, or New York. They get burned by all the fees and detest the cramped product, never to fly NK again. NK gets other people on board, and many of them will never come back, either. A few years later, NK reduces frequencies and cuts markets because they have tapped out innocent first time travelers....

Quoting flaps30 (Thread starter):
Does AA deem them a threat to their fortress at DFW and has AA resorted to any dirty tricks to drive them out?

On the contrary, this is the one airline that AA probably loves to have expanding at DFW. They tell the market: pay higher and higher fares to fly with us, or go fly the airline that will change you $100 to check a bag at the gate...



Flying in the middle seat of coach is much better than not flying at all!
User currently offlinePe@rson From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 19230 posts, RR: 52
Reply 14, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 3556 times:

Not related specifically to DFW, but I just found this and thought I'd share it: href="http://www.spiritair.com/content/Documents/en-US/>www.spiritair.com/content/Documents/OnboardAdvertisingOpportunities.pdf

From that link, 34.9% of its customers are aged 45-60 and 26.1% 35-44. In terms of income, 28.6% of its customers have an income of $60,000-74,999, with 53% of customers above $60,000. With this in mind, it's not surprising that 82% own their own home.



"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
User currently offlinebeechtobus From United States of America, joined Nov 2011, 313 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 3124 times:

Quoting SurfandSnow (Reply 13):

SurfSnow writes: "Get people excited about a cheap nonstop fare to Vegas, Cancun, or New York. They get burned by all the fees and detest the cramped product, never to fly NK again. NK gets other people on board, and many of them will never come back, either. A few years later, NK reduces frequencies and cuts markets because they have tapped out innocent first time travelers...."

Interesting theory. Completely meritless and full of holes, but interesting... But since you do seem to have the answers maybe you can answer a few more. If Spirits method to sucess is essentially duping "first time, innocent" customers and moving on to other markets when they are tapped out, then:

1) Why have they continued to grow in smaller cities like MYR and ACY where they are essentially focus cities that they have been operating from pretty much since they started flying (ACY has seen some cuts this year due to Sandy). Don't you think they would have been "tapped out" of first time innocents years ago, especially in smaller markets like these? What about Latrobe, where they have gone from a few weekly flights to FLL to dailies to FLL, MYR, MCO, and now DFW?

2) Same question but for the larger markets. If you look at all routes from DTW over the years, they have pretty much remained the same(DTW-LAX, LGA, FLL, TPA, MCO, ACY, LAS, RSW, etc). Other routes around the system have been around for years as well, FLL-LGA, LAX-ORD, FLL-BOS, ORD-MYR, ATL-FLL, etc, the list goes on and on. Don't you think that eventually they would have been "tapped out" in these major markets as well as the smaller ones I mentioned.

3) If Spirit's method just going after "first timers", making them "one timers", and then moving on, then why would Spirit even bother with smaller cities like Niagara Falls, Latrobe, or Charleston WV, etc, where the pool of potential "one timers" is limited? Don't you think they would have gone for cities like SEA, STL, CLE, CLT, SLC, MCI, etc, where the market and thus pool of potential first timers to dupe is much larger, and thus they could stick around longer.

Spirits secret to sucess in DFW and elsewhere is not as you may believe, getting people excited a low fare, and burning them then moving on. Spirit, believe it or not has a pretty non-haphazard formula down that is making its share and stake holders a lot of money, in fact making the largest profit yields seen in the airlines ever over the past few years. It is a number of factors aimed at lowering the base fare as much as possible like:

1) Efficiently scheduling aircraft, personnel, airport facilities, etc. It is packing people in to aircraft, up to the aircraft's max FAA allowed capacity, Spirit calls it "green", some call it uncomfortable. It is looking for the airports and airport facilities that offer the best value for the airline and thus the customer

2) It is charging for everything besides the pre-assigned seat and a small bag that can fit under the seat, Spirit calls it value added pricing, some call it unbundling, some call it nickel and dimeing.

3) It is only flying routes that make money and quickly adjusting as necessary. If a route doesn't perform and/or that aircraft can be used to make more money on another route, the first route will be cut, plain and simple.

4)Spirit has no aspirations for market share, legacy routes, and is not after the frequent or business traveler. They would just as quick start LAX-JFK as they would start BOI-EUG, as long as marketing people find that it would make money.

Sure, NK isn't for everyone, there are people that I'm sure will try it once and never again. If you're more than 5'9" or so, I would buy an exit row seat, the first row of the coach seat, or a Big Front Seat or go on someone else. If you want everything included in the base price look elsewhere. If you want the choice of multiple daily flights on a route (with a few exceptions), look elsewhere. But Spirit does work for many, and largely runs on return customers that either embrace the product or at least deal with it because its the least expensive.

Also this notion of "burning" customers with hidden baggage fees is rediculous. Anyone who believes this, I will ask now as I have before, go to their website and go through the process of booking a flight, up to where you have to provide payment. You are guided directly to baggage criteria and fees during the booking process, not in fine print, but big and clear. Additionally at the airport at Sprits ticket counters there are large signs that say "we don't want you to pay $100 for your checked bag" and guides you to sizing bins where you still have the option to pay at the ticket counter or even online if you have a smart phone.


User currently offlinebeechtobus From United States of America, joined Nov 2011, 313 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 2991 times:

Also AWACSooner, looks like some nonstops from LAS to BWI and PHL are coming. So, again, the arguement for LAS pairing away is now even less valid.

User currently offlinesanti319 From Mexico, joined Dec 2005, 397 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 2918 times:

I gave up trying to argue with a-netters about how bad NK is doing a long time ago. Back in the 2008 fuel crisis I recall certain people claiming NK was shutting down. As you are well aware they were and are wrong. You just need to look at Europe, Southeast Asia, etc. to see where this is going. "Nickle and dimming" as some in here call it, seems to be the new future of short and medium haul travel. But don't quote me, time will prove them wrong.... Again.....

[Edited 2013-01-29 19:33:58]

User currently offlinebeechtobus From United States of America, joined Nov 2011, 313 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 2875 times:

Quoting santi319 (Reply 17):

I hear you and agree 100 percent. I just get a chuckle when reading some of the nonsense that people that don't like Spirit write, and most of it is flat out Malarky. Cities and bases being boarded up when spirit has its largest presence there as they've ever had, claims of going after one "unknowing" victim at a time take all their money in hidden fees and they will have such a horrible experience and not come back, then spirit goes on to pillage elsewhere. Just some humor to me.


User currently offlinebobloblaw From United States of America, joined Jan 2012, 1725 posts, RR: 1
Reply 19, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 2809 times:

Quoting flaps30 (Thread starter):

Does NK offer connecting service in DFW ?


User currently offlineOB1504 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 3354 posts, RR: 6
Reply 20, posted (1 year 7 months 3 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 2446 times:

Quoting bobloblaw (Reply 19):
Does NK offer connecting service in DFW ?

Definitely, and many of the flights in and out are marketed as thru flights with a stopover in DFW, such as flights 971/972, which run FLL-DFW-AZA-DFW-FLL.


User currently offlinepiedmont727 From United States of America, joined Dec 2012, 108 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (1 year 7 months 2 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 2086 times:

i dont know delta i think was the biggest threat there and american reduced them to a focus city from a hub

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