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Were Cathay & Singapore The Emirates Of The 90s?  
User currently offlineg500 From United States of America, joined Oct 2011, 942 posts, RR: 0
Posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 9999 times:
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These days the Gulf carriers, Emirates, Etihad & Qatar enjoy the spotlight, it seems like they can't do no wrong (specially EK).... Pilots from all over the world want to work for them, investors want to get on that bandwagon and cash-in, passengers love the service, they even have a say in how manufacturers design airplanes...Everything seems to be bouncing in their favor..

Is it accurate to think that throught the 1990s, Singapore and Cathay were the "Emirates of the 90s"??

I remember Cathay and Singapore were considered the best airlines in the world back in the 90s, they were making money, expanding, lots of appeal, etc

opinions welcome....

39 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineSpaceshipDC10 From Canada, joined Jan 2013, 1651 posts, RR: 3
Reply 1, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 9993 times:

Quoting g500 (Thread starter):
Is it accurate to think that throught the 1990s, Singapore and Cathay were the "Emirates of the 90s"??

I think its correct to think of these, then, as such. They were part of the Asian Tigers wave after all.



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User currently offlineAA737-823 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 5731 posts, RR: 11
Reply 2, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 9502 times:

In my opinion, Cathay and Singapore were better then, and better regarded, than the ME3 (Emirates, Etihad, Qatar) are today, and in fact probably remain so.
You don't see Singapore or Cathay going ten-abreast in their 777-3ERs, something that Emirates is all about.
And the health of the ME3 is tied into the health of the oil industry, though tourism and connecting traffic are also gaining ground; I'm not sure that the health of the Asian carriers was ever linked to one specific crutch like oil, whereas any city in the world can be made a connecting hub, so it's a non-factor.


User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 24891 posts, RR: 22
Reply 3, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 9455 times:

Quoting g500 (Thread starter):
Is it accurate to think that throught the 1990s, Singapore and Cathay were the "Emirates of the 90s"??

I disagree. SQ and CX lacked the major advantage of DXB's geographical location which permits EK to connect a huge number of major markets. SIN is really only a good hub between Europe and Australia and a few neighbouring points in South East Asia. Most other connections via SIN involve a lot of unnecessary flying. For example, it's much too far south to serve as a good hub for traffic between North America and Asia except SIN and the immediate vicinity such as Indonesia and Malaysia which are very small markets from/to North America.

And, for CX, HKG's easterly location in Asia doesn't permit it to serve as a good hub for as many markets as DXB.

[Edited 2013-11-12 13:55:14]

User currently offlinemotorhussy From New Zealand, joined Mar 2000, 3139 posts, RR: 9
Reply 4, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 9442 times:

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 2):
connecting traffic

This is the true key I believe. The geographic position of these emirates (is Qatar an emirate?) puts them in pretty much non-stop position to the world. This was SQ's strength too, linking Europe to Australia, the US to SE Asia. Even today, passengers flying from Australia/New Zealand to much of Asia will go via SIN.

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 2):
one specific crutch

Cathay's was of course being the gateway to the dragon, now the dragon has many.



come visit the south pacific
User currently offlinedirectorguy From Egypt, joined Jul 2008, 1651 posts, RR: 11
Reply 5, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 9290 times:

Based purely on anecdotes, I'd say that back in the day, CX and SQ certainly knew how to create a wow factor that allowed their names/brands to be associated with a certain level of service that raised the bar very high. Today, the ME3 have succeeded in creating similar brands for themselves (whether the hype matches the actual service is of course another matter). Both the ME3 and SQ/CX come from countries that were formerly Third World obscure backwaters (more true in the case of the ME3 home countries) that managed to undergo rapid transformations and become financial/trade hubs.
One could also add that CX/SQ raised the bar for other Asian airlines as well. The ME3 have also done the same for other Middle Eastern airlines. TK, MS, and even SV have all begun emulating the former in terms of expansion strategy and service quality where possible.


User currently offlinea380787 From Canada, joined Jul 2013, 964 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 9216 times:

Just look at their F/J products

SQ/CX : timeless
EK : tasteless (all the bling bling gold you can get from donald trump)

While EK is flooding the market with dirt cheap Y fares to fill their 10-abreast 777s, SQ/CX continues to provide a top quality F/J product and 9-abreast Y class


User currently offlinetortugamon From United States of America, joined Apr 2013, 3393 posts, RR: 10
Reply 7, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 9179 times:

Quoting g500 (Thread starter):

CX and SQ were significant purchasers of very large aircraft with very large range which gave them a lot of exposure. The wealthy/business traveler were the most common customer for these long routes and therefore they adopted premium product.

As airlines prices have dropped and travel has increased while the size of the middle class has increased the average world traveler relatively less-affluent then was the case. As such, EK does not need as premium a product to gain growth. In fact, the more efficient they can make their product, the cheaper it will be and now premium seating is where you drive profits.

Its a very different consumer so its a different business model. Certainly EK has more impact on commercial aviation than CX and SQ.

tortugamon


User currently offlineAA737-823 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 5731 posts, RR: 11
Reply 8, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 8649 times:

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 3):
SQ and CX lacked the major advantage of DXB's geographical location which permits EK to connect a huge number of major markets. SIN is really only a good hub between Europe and Australia and a few neighbouring points in South East Asia.
Quoting motorhussy (Reply 4):
The geographic position of these emirates (is Qatar an emirate?) puts them in pretty much non-stop position to the world.

You guy's perspective on location takes into account some things I hadn't considered, and provides some interesting fodder for thought!


User currently offlinetortugamon From United States of America, joined Apr 2013, 3393 posts, RR: 10
Reply 9, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 8489 times:

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 3):
SQ and CX lacked the major advantage of DXB's geographical location which permits EK to connect a huge number of major markets.

I don't necessarily agree. DXB does not have an advantage over SIN/HKG when it comes to regional Asian travel and that is where much of the growth is. Nor is it useful for Americas/Asia travel where HKG is beneficial. DXB has an advantage in linking Asia/Oceana with Europe/Africa and much of their growth has come from pulling share from European legacies.

There is an advantage but its an intercontinental one.


tortugamon


User currently offlineAirIndia From United Arab Emirates, joined Jan 2001, 1634 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 8467 times:

Quoting tortugamon (Reply 9):
There is an advantage but its an intercontinental one.

Which is where EK is positioning itself, as an intercontinental carrier. EK has never aspired to be a regionally dominat player (although it is in the middle east).

An interesting blog on washington post highlights a key point.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/...s/files/2013/08/population-map.jpg

The image has a circle. Movement of traffic within the circle is dominated by SQ, CX, TG etc however its movement from the circle to outside where ME carriers are better positioned.


User currently offlineCoal From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 1995 posts, RR: 9
Reply 11, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 8233 times:

Given that a huge chunk of economic activity is coming from China, India, and ASEAN, I believe SQ and CX will be better positioned for the premium end of the market vs. the ME3.

I think what SQ needs to do is to have stronger links with ET and SA in order to capture more and more Africa - East Asia traffic, while at the same time taking over some of MI's China routes and putting wide body SQ birds on those.

I also think SQ will continue to benefit from increased economic growth in ASEAN, which in itself as a region is the third-largest emerging market economy behind China and India, way ahead of Russia and Brazil.

If ASEAN can get its act together and eventually approve AEC (ASEAN Economic Community), which I highly doubt will happen in 2015, then SQ will definitely be very well positioned for continued growth. I think the key will be whether or not secondary cities in SE Asia will develop the same way secondary cities in China have developed (and attracted non-stop European air service).

As for CX, I think they are very well positioned to continue to capture the growth in China. Geographically, they can serve Australian, North American, and European traffic connecting to 2nd and 3rd tier cities in China through KA and through a very strong brand vs. Chinese airlines.

Cheers
Coal



Nxt Flts: VA SYD-CBR-SYD | VA SYD-OOL-SYD | JQ SYD-MEL | VA MEL-CBR-SYD | DL SYD-LAX-ATL-MIA | B6 FLL-DCA-BOS | DL BOS-L
User currently offlinetortugamon From United States of America, joined Apr 2013, 3393 posts, RR: 10
Reply 12, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 8093 times:

Quoting AirIndia (Reply 10):

Right you are. There are two cities in North America and one in Europe with 5 million people but there are 30 such cities within 2,250nm from HKG. That is where the longer term growth is.

I also think the 787's rise will mean less dependency on Middle East carriers.


tortugamon


User currently offlineklinit From Australia, joined Jan 2013, 49 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 7893 times:

Quoting a380787 (Reply 6):

While EK is flooding the market with dirt cheap Y fares to fill their 10-abreast 777s

Just out of curiosity - which markets are EK flooding with dirt cheap Y fares? Ex Australia they're always up the more expensive end of the spectrum (I only travel Y)... then again flights from Australia always need a connection - so I'm guessing markets where they add an unnecessary connection?


User currently offlineBoeingMerica From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 7343 times:

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 2):
777-3ERs,

Wait, they didn't go 10 abreast in a plane type they didn't have? Completely apples to oranges.

Also, I think the seat abreast numbers are way over hyped on A.net. Are you telling me you would seriously derive pleasure and comfort from your journey in a 9 abreast cabin, yet it becomes a horrid nightmare sardine cattle car if one more seat is added. A seat, I might add, that it's spaced was mainly derived from material savings in other seats, and aisle shrinkage.

Seems pretty out there if you ask me. Now the reported 11 EK wants is a different ball game, compared to 9; but then again, I don't think we will see 11 as a reality. It is something the revenue analysts want.

BoeingMerica


User currently offlinesailas From Finland, joined Jul 2007, 278 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 6390 times:

Quoting motorhussy (Reply 4):

no. Qatar is a state. Emirate states are lead by emirs. Emirate = one of of the UAE emirate out of Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Ajman, Fujairah, Ras al Khaimah, sharjah and umm al quwain.

I thought CX had 10 abreast 777-300 on their regional cabin?



Airlines been on: AY, LX, SR, OS, SK, KF, EZY, FR, BA, LH, AF, TG, DC, FC, TK, KL, BT, CX, QR
User currently offlineEL-AL From Israel, joined Oct 2001, 1294 posts, RR: 5
Reply 16, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 6373 times:

Regarding Cathay, It couldn't be any "emirates" during the 90s - it's hub, Kai-Tak, had very limited capacity, single runway and out of date terminal. In addition, the 90s were days of unknown future to Hong Kong and Cathay included, as no one know how Beijing will handle HK after the handover. Both the handover and the new airport took place only in july 1997, with most of the 90s decade has passed.


"In our country, those who do not believe in miracles are irrational" - David Ben Gurion.
User currently offlineCX Flyboy From Hong Kong, joined Dec 1999, 6588 posts, RR: 55
Reply 17, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days ago) and read 5978 times:

Quoting sailas (Reply 15):
I thought CX had 10 abreast 777-300 on their regional cabin?

No we don't. We have a 3-3-3 config in economy class on all our 777s.


User currently offlineAyostoLeon From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (8 months 2 weeks 5 days ago) and read 5912 times:

Quoting sailas (Reply 15):

Not quite true. Emirate = state ruled by an Emir. The ruler of Qatar is in fact an Emir.

At one time Qatar was in discussions with Bahrain and the Trucial States to form a federation following independence from Britain. The federation didn't materialise so Qatar remained a separate Emirate while the Trucial states combined to form the UAE.

Quoting AirIndia (Reply 10):

The map shows the enormous potential for growth in the years ahead and at the centre of the circle is BKK. Certainly the number of airlines visiting and number of passenger movements has increased. But what steps are Thai carriers like TG taking to take greater advantage of movements from within the circle to places outside of it?


User currently offlineJumpjet From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2005, 279 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (8 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 5409 times:

Quoting klinit (Reply 13):
While EK is flooding the market with dirt cheap Y fares to fill their 10-abreast 777s

I must have missed those, damn!   


User currently offlineqf2220 From Australia, joined Aug 2013, 394 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (8 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 5411 times:

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 3):
SQ and CX lacked the major advantage of DXB's geographical location
Quoting tortugamon (Reply 7):
while the size of the middle class has increased

I think we need to consider these two concepts together. SQ and CX were well placed for where the travelling class was at the time and therefore had and to a degree (especailly CX) still have. The Kangaroo route being a significant source of middle class traffic between Aus and Europe had a larger share of traffic now than it did (compared to the Europe/Asia/Oceanea/Africa travel basin) and SQ and CX were well placed to capitalise on this traffic (SQ moreso than CX). They had more to do with the European/Oceanic carriers moving off the route in those years, which the ME3 finished off. SQ and CX are less well suited to some Asia-Europe and Africa-Europe routes than the ME3 hence a slight waning of their halos (especially SQ).

In terms of aircraft orders etc, definately, they were pretty signficant at the time, however they were relatively equal to other carrier orders. EK particularly is in a different category with its large orders. Re pax experience, they are probably much of a muchness in a lot of respects, just with different regional preferences.


User currently onlineSOBHI51 From Saudi Arabia, joined Jun 2003, 3423 posts, RR: 17
Reply 21, posted (8 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 5329 times:
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While everybody is talking about SQ and CX in the 90's there was another airline in my humble opinion who was better than both, i am talking about NH, in those days i used to travel a lot to the far east and they were my airline of choice out of IAD.


I am against any terrorist acts committed under the name of Islam
User currently offlineparapente From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2006, 1548 posts, RR: 10
Reply 22, posted (8 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 5206 times:

Is it accurate to think that throught the 1990s, Singapore and Cathay were the "Emirates of the 90s"??

Very ineresting question posed.Perhaps in their day they were. Indeed still are to some extent (in their area).

No doubt as has been stated above (perhaps someone should show a map) it is about location. If crudely one thinks of one side of the globe as "The Pacific Ocean" which it is nearly,then you look at the landmass on the other side - take a look at where Emirates is based. Bang slap in the centre.

Of course it's horses for courses. If Europeans and Americans which to visit each other then Emirates does not come into the equation any more than Americans going to S America or Japan/China for instance.But if an American wanted to go to India he no longer needs to go north to London or similar he will simply go via ME3.

But the other key is the way Emirates have reinvested their profits in expanding their route networks.This has given travelers far more point to point options that never existed before.No one wants that third extra journey!


User currently offlinesailas From Finland, joined Jul 2007, 278 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (8 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 5166 times:

My dad flew a lot when i was in primary school in Geneva. He always had 2 choices in his mind when going east or west; SR and CX. He loved both. Even to this day, he still uses CX and moved to use LX. But out of the two he thinks CX is a bit better, but prefers the a340-300 the most.


Airlines been on: AY, LX, SR, OS, SK, KF, EZY, FR, BA, LH, AF, TG, DC, FC, TK, KL, BT, CX, QR
User currently offlineq120 From Canada, joined Aug 2008, 278 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (8 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 5077 times:

When money is infinite, anything is possible.
Everyone bends over and accepts.
This monstrosity will keep expanding like a blood sucking inspect.



However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results
25 tjcab : ...your opinion of course. Cultural differences. Look at the Europeans. IMO, mostly IKEA bland. Hey, this is what they like, and I'd say, they are pr
26 AyostoLeon : Undoubtedly NH has provided a quality service but due to the location of its hub has not enjoyed the same advantages of connectivity that others have
27 Post contains images airbazar : Not even close. Both CX and SQ had their own market which they built upon, whereas the ME carriers didn't have their own market and to a certain exte
28 Post contains images lightsaber : I've pointed out before the ME hubs grew that they were filling a gap in the lack of European and Indian hub growth. Now they are a force in their own
29 Post contains links infinit : The Singapore government envisioned making SIN an airhub but never thought an SQ could compete if it's hub was so open. This was still in the time of
30 Post contains images lightsaber : From the hubbing, hotel, and fleet planning strategies, they started that way. However, EK has grown enough to create its own model that works very w
31 airbazar : The 744 only arrived circa 1990. By then SQ already had a very expansive international network operating to all continents except S.America. I rememb
32 Viscount724 : For many U.S.-India markets, it's actually slightly shorter via Europe than via the Gulf hubs. That's especially true from the east coast to points i
33 bharathkv : Totally agree on the SQ distance from major markets. Also for North America to India traveling to singapore and then traveling to the destination is
34 Post contains links and images lightsaber : Which was impressive. But their 744 order, for the times, was seen as the EK A380 order. An order that turned out to be a stroke of genius for SQ. 12
35 motorhussy : Thank you, I'm aware that emirates are led by Emirs, sultanates by Sultans, indeed duchies by Dukes and so forth. However I was just pondering the st
36 airbazar : I agree with everything you say. I was just pointing out that SQ and CX did not start the same way the ME carriers did. CX could never have had a str
37 timpdx : looking at Viscounts numbers, I have wondered why one of the Korean carriers has not agressively gone after Western USA to India flights. I know you c
38 airbazar : I can think of a few reasons. Bilaterals and yields being 2 but most of all, US-East Asia is a huge and profitable market in its own right. Any passe
39 parapente : Reply 32 For many U.S.-India markets, it's actually slightly shorter via Europe than via the Gulf hubs. If you take the Northern city of America -New
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