Yflyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 897 posts, RR: 1 Posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 6497 times:
Just a random question I was thinking about today: Back when BA and AF still had the Concordes, if you needed to fly between New York and somewhere in Europe other than London and Paris, would it have been faster to fly nonstop on a subsonic airliner, or take a connecting flight via LHR or CDG with the transatlantic leg being on the Concorde? Say, for example, JFK-FCO nonstop versus JFK-LHR/CDG(Concorde)-FCO, assuming the layover wasn't too long.
AeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20322 posts, RR: 64 Reply 1, posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 6439 times:
Quoting Yflyer (Thread starter): Say, for example, JFK-FCO nonstop versus JFK-LHR/CDG(Concorde)-FCO, assuming the layover wasn't too long.
Really, somewhat of a trick question. Concorde eastbound flights were daylight flights, and the only subsonic daylight flights go to London, usually arriving too late to make many meaningful connections. But, if you could make a daylight subsonic-to-subsonic connection, yes, it would be slower than a supersonic-to-subsonic daylight connection.
Compare that to waiting for the overnight nonstop flight to your ultimate destination. It really depended upon what time of day you desired to fly to make a meaningful comparison.
Viscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 23244 posts, RR: 23 Reply 2, posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 6384 times:
It could be faster to connect from a Concorde flight to a flight within Europe, but due to the eastbound schedules there weren't a lot of connections to many destinations.
For example, in July 1983, BA's two daily Concordes JFK-LHR arrived LHR at 6:10 PM and 10:25 PM. There would be some possible connections from the 6:10 PM flight but virtually none from the 10:25 PM arrival. The BA Concorde from IAD (3 x week) arrived at 7 PM so there would be some potential connections.
At that time, the one daily AF Concorde JFK-CDG arrived at 10:45 PM with virtually no connections anywhere without an overnight stop.
There were far more potential connections westbound due to the departure times:
BA LHR-JFK - 10:30 AM and 6 PM
BA LHR-IAD - 1 PM
AF CDG-JFK - 11 AM
26point2 From United States of America, joined Mar 2010, 752 posts, RR: 0 Reply 3, posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 6374 times:
...and to go the other direction wouldn''t save much time, or any at all, most likely. LHR-JFK was a 3.5 hour leg on Concorde. JFK-SFO is a 5.5 hour flight on a good day on any random Boeing or Airbus product. Give yourself 2 hours to transfer and you've got 11 hours door-to-door. LHR-SFO non-stop on a B-747 is 11 hours also.
Not to nit-pick the OP but it's Concorde with an "e". The "e" was added to appease the French...or so I have heard.
Viscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 23244 posts, RR: 23 Reply 5, posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 6294 times:
Quoting 26point2 (Reply 3): ...and to go the other direction wouldn''t save much time, or any at all, most likely. LHR-JFK was a 3.5 hour leg on Concorde. JFK-SFO is a 5.5 hour flight on a good day on any random Boeing or Airbus product. Give yourself 2 hours to transfer and you've got 11 hours door-to-door. LHR-SFO non-stop on a B-747 is 11 hours also.
The original poster was referring to connections beyond LHR and CDG to/from poiints in Europe, not connections to/from U.S. domestic points. Due to the much shorter distances to most major cities in Europe, elapsed time could be several hours faster assuming a 1-hr or so connection at LHR or CDG.
802flyguy From United States of America, joined May 2012, 121 posts, RR: 0 Reply 6, posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 6169 times:
During the BA/US marketing agreement days, US ran a dedicated DCA-JFK Express operation (with DH8s) to BA's Concorde flights, Even on a DASH with a connection, it wa faster than IAD-LHR subsonic. Not sure if PTP from the District to Dulles to Concorde to LHR was faster than IAD-LHR on the SCC, but the service did run for a while. Until the end of the BA/US agreement IIRC.
I still think the idea of connecting a DASH 8 to Concorde is a bit funny!
On the outbound total journey time of 6hrs 40min
On the inbound 6hrs 10min.
The connections maybe are not the greatest and there is no time saving advantage over a non-stop subsonic flight. At least in this example.
It was however cheaper than the BA LHR-JFK fare and I guess a few leisure passengers who just wanted to fly Concorde bought it.
chieft From Germany, joined Jun 2005, 299 posts, RR: 0 Reply 10, posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 5564 times:
I had the pleasure to fly Concorde several times.
From Germany, it made sense to fly out to JFK with Concorde and going back with a sub-sonic night flight. Did that 3 times.
In those days, JFK-Germany made no sense with Concorde, as the return flight departed at 12 a.m. already. And the connection from LHR to Germany wasn't matching - if I recall that right.
For me, it was perfect to fly out to JFK arriving in the morning, having meetings and going back in F-class with the night flight; BA offered good fares with that combination.
cedarjet From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 7812 posts, RR: 54 Reply 11, posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 5498 times:
In the 90s, when I was a travel agent at Flight World Travel, a BA Concorde flight to NY was about £3,000. Air France sold it on occasion through a consolidator (a travel agent whose actual role was to sell the tickets of one airline for less than the agreed fares, this was before open skies and deregulation - and usually an airline's consolidator or "bucket shop" was a business owned by a relative of the airline's station manager!) for £1999 return LHR-CDG-JFK.
I don't recall the exact schedule but it worked out about the same as taking BA's early morning 747 (aka the "Poor Man's Concorde"), which left around 9am and landed around midday. By Air France Concorde you left on an A300 (pre Eurostar, LHR-CDG was the world's busiest air route, BA was all L1011 then 767-300, AF was all A300 and sometimes 747) at 0900 to arr CDG 1100 then connected to Concorde which left CDG at 1300 and arrived at JFK around 1200 local. No-one booked it for speed, but for the experience. I wish I'd done it. (I did make it onto the very last bookable BA 001* on Oct 15** 2003 but at great expense - would have been great to have done an Air France one as well.)
* and came home on the very first BA 002 JFK-LCY six years later.
** the exact date of their first long haul A380 service, to LAX - see you onboard!
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
icanfly From Australia, joined Aug 2011, 83 posts, RR: 0 Reply 12, posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 5373 times:
Quoting cedarjet (Reply 11): No-one booked it for speed, but for the experience.
I remember an episode of the UK TV series "Airport" in the 1990s featured Donatella Versace flying JFK-LHR on Concorde and then continuing on to Milan by private jet. I wondered why she didn't just fly non-stop between JFK and Milan but it was clearly a prestige thing for her.
Aesma From France, joined Nov 2009, 5737 posts, RR: 9 Reply 13, posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 5336 times:
Quoting 26point2 (Reply 3): Not to nit-pick the OP but it's Concorde with an "e". The "e" was added to appease the French...or so I have heard.
Re-added is more correct. The name was proposed by the British with an e, then for nationalistic reasons (France opposing the entry of the UK in the common market) the e was removed, then at the roll-out in Toulouse it was put back.
Quoting icanfly (Reply 12): I remember an episode of the UK TV series "Airport" in the 1990s featured Donatella Versace flying JFK-LHR on Concorde and then continuing on to Milan by private jet. I wondered why she didn't just fly non-stop between JFK and Milan but it was clearly a prestige thing for her.
Well it would probably be cheaper. And clearly faster, with a private jet you can make a quick and stressless connection. And you can use a cheaper short-range jet.
New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
FoxBravo From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 2903 posts, RR: 5 Reply 17, posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 5059 times:
Back in the 90s I spent a couple of summers working in a travel agency that catered to some very wealthy clients (in addition to many regular clients). I recall a few of these wealthy, often older, leisure travelers taking the Concorde from JFK to LHR in the morning, overnighting in London and then continuing on to their destinations in Italy, France, etc. the following morning. Not the fastest from door to door, but arguably a more comfortable way to travel--a 3-hour daytime flight, and a good sleep in a luxury hotel, could certainly be a nicer start to a vacation than a fitful sleep on a transatlantic flight. Plus, as others have noted, the novelty factor and prestige of the Concorde. More frequently, others did (and probably still do) the same with the BA morning subsonic service from JFK to LHR--again, not good for connections, since it arrives too late, but great if you don't like sleeping on planes and aren't in a hurry.
knope2001 From United States of America, joined May 2005, 2661 posts, RR: 30 Reply 18, posted (7 months 3 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 5019 times:
When considering if connections to/from the SSC made sense versus a subsonic nonstop, keep in mind the relative geography and the duration of the subsonic connecting flight. Something like IAD-JFK-LHR could be a significantly faster than IAD-LHR subsonic nonstop because IAD-NYC is a short subsonic hop and flying Washington to London over NYC isn't very out of the way. Something like SEA-JFK-LHR versus SEA-LHR subsonic nonstop couldn't be advantageous because SEA-JFK is such a long subsonic trip, and SEA-JFK-LHR is a far longer distance to travel. SEA-LHR is about 9 hours, but just to get from SEA to JFK alone is about 5.5 hours.
What the SSC could open up for connections was flights at different times of the day. For example, when BA ran an early morning LHR-JFK flight it arrived around 9:00am, meaning you could get to an afternoon meeting in places like Boston, Philadelphia, Detroit, etc, where the conventional nonstop didn't usually arrive in those cities until mid afternoon. Or you could spend nearly all day in London, and the evening SSC to JFK, and still connect that night at JFK to many cities. Similarly, the daytime eastbound flight which left JFK for LHR at 1:30pm or so meant you could get a daytime connection to London via JFK from places like Dallas, Miami and Atlanta.
They key in this, however, is that it only really opened up new opportunities for a very specific segment. For a Boston businessperson who needed to be in an all-day meeting in London on Tuesday but needed to be in the office on Wednesday morning, being able to take a 7:00pm LHR-JFK-BOS connection via the SSC made that work in a way that conventional flights could not. But for anyone less time-sensitive, they'd likely never even consider the extra cost and inconvenience of this versus a regular conventional nonstop.
All the above except the transfer to the AMS flight would have required a transfer at LHR from T$ to T1 (BA flights) or T" (other airlines flights).
The April 1995 ABC World Airways Guide listed transfer flights off BA002 at LHR and on to the following destinations (Europe and beyond):
ADD (Day 1 only)
CPT (Days 3, 5 and 7)
GBE (Days 1 and 5)
MRU (Day 5 only)
MTS (Day 2 only)
PRG (Days 1, 3, 6 and 7)
SEZ (Days 3 and 7)
THR (Days 4 and 7)
I believe (but am by no means certain) that the ABC World Airways Guide only listed transfer flights when requested to (and paid) by the airline(s). If this is correct the above list will not be exhaustive.
AirlineCritic From Finland, joined Mar 2009, 670 posts, RR: 1 Reply 20, posted (7 months 3 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 1341 times:
The results are different based on whether you are going to/coming from a place that has a direct subsonic flight or not. If your local flight leg is needed anyway, then Concorde will speed your overall trip, assuming the schedules fit together. VV701 points to some cases where the schedules fit very well.