Cointrin330
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United #2 Airline Again (Revenue Passenger Miles)

Thu Jan 10, 2019 12:05 pm

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles ... hub-growth

Looks like UA has passed DL as the world's #2 airline, reclaiming that spot. This is not meant to be a UA vs. DL bashing session. Looks like UA has more growth planned for 2019 on top of what has already been announced.
 
MIflyer12
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 12:59 pm

More specifically, it's revenue passenger miles. (Some people like to talk passenger count instead of RPMs, ignoring stage length.)

Delta was ever so slightly ahead of AA in operating revenues for 9 months 2018, with UA 3rd, behind by $3 Billion.
 
Coalways
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 1:04 pm

Glad to see United take back the #2 spot with all there new domestic expansion and unique international expansion!!!
 
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jetblastdubai
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 1:17 pm

Before heads in Atlanta explode keep in mind RPMs are one of many different metrics on how to rank airlines. There's going to backlash siting pax numbers, profits, market value etc. We'll see the same reactions if (reportedly) ORD comes out on top of ATL for aircraft operations for 2018.

Regardless of the comments that will follow, looking back at how each company performed in the recent past does set the groundwork for the near-term trends and potential successes. What UA does with 100 fewer A/C than DL and over 200 fewer than AA is remarkable. They might not be the most profitable at the moment but they're building a solid operation in some of the most premier/competitive locations in the country (and World) and slowly upping their competitive game by finally adding mainline for expansion instead of replacement.

I'm sure it can never be fully calculated, or made public, but the lengthy merger-related issues at UA have had to be a huge anchor on the bottom line for many years. With that issue now behind them, the 800-lb. gorilla might be warming up again.
Last edited by jetblastdubai on Thu Jan 10, 2019 1:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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United1
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:06 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
More specifically, it's revenue passenger miles. (Some people like to talk passenger count instead of RPMs, ignoring stage length.)

Delta was ever so slightly ahead of AA in operating revenues for 9 months 2018, with UA 3rd, behind by $3 Billion.


Yup...UA passed DL this year in terms of RPMs; in 2017 UA passed DL in terms of ASMs to retake the number 2 spot.

There are a number of metrics where DL is still a larger carrier than UA is (revenue and passenger numbers being two of them) but UA is closing the gap quite rapidly. They also seem to be managing their growth quite well as load factors are increasing and yield doesn't seem to be suffering.

Well done UA...
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
Rdh3e
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:07 pm

727LOVER wrote:
That's been the official measure of airline size for decades.....his title is FINE

Not to be a nit, but technically RPMs are the measure of busiest, not largest. ASMs are the metric for size.
 
Cointrin330
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:13 pm

jumbojet wrote:
Cointrin330 wrote:
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-01-09/united-regains-rank-as-world-s-no-2-airline-on-2018-hub-growth

Looks like UA has passed DL as the world's #2 airline, reclaiming that spot. This is not meant to be a UA vs. DL bashing session. Looks like UA has more growth planned for 2019 on top of what has already been announced.



well then your title should be more specific such as UA #2 airline in terms of passenger traffic. Much of the more important metrics, it still languishes behind DL. And that is not a bash. The title is very vague. And remember, growth doesnt always equal better profits, which after all, is what the street is mostly all about. At any rate, congrats to UA for being #2 for passenger traffic,


Read the article through the link and see my comment about this not being a UA vs. DL bashing post. And also, get a life.
 
Cointrin330
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:13 pm

727LOVER wrote:
jumbojet wrote:
Cointrin330 wrote:
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-01-09/united-regains-rank-as-world-s-no-2-airline-on-2018-hub-growth

Looks like UA has passed DL as the world's #2 airline, reclaiming that spot. This is not meant to be a UA vs. DL bashing session. Looks like UA has more growth planned for 2019 on top of what has already been announced.



well then your title should be more specific such as UA #2 airline in terms of passenger traffic. Much of the more important metrics, it still languishes behind DL. And that is not a bash. The title is very vague. And remember, growth doesnt always equal better profits, which after all, is what the street is mostly all about. At any rate, congrats to UA for being #2 for passenger traffic,



WOW...somebody got offended 8-)


Did you read THIS

United last year recorded 230.2 billion revenue passenger miles, an industry yardstick of traffic that multiplies the number of passengers by the distance flown

That's been the official measure of airline size for decades.....his title is FINE

jumbojet wrote:
And remember, growth doesnt always equal better profits, which after all, is what the street is mostly all about.


Which this news has nothing to do with, so why even bring it up?


Thank you!
 
Newbiepilot
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:19 pm

I think we are seeing the effect of United adding all the used A319s to the fleet. It appears to be a very smart decision. Chinese airlines are slot constrained and dumping relatively young 737-700s and A319s because they need to upgauge. UA is not slot constrained at many airports so they can take advantage of cheap 10-15 year old airplanes with plenty of life in them. Where United is slot constrained, they have used A319s to cause a cascading domino of upgauging flights from E175s which in turn were used to upgauge ERJ145 flights. Looks like smart and opportunistic fleet planning.

Delta is taking many new airplanes, but they also have MD88s/90s that need retirement. Keeping the older planes flying is not as viable as an option. UA having a younger domestic fleet looks like it is helpful so they can react to changing market demand.

We are also seeing the impact of the 787 deliveries. UA is adding widebodies and not retiring widebodies. This has allowed all the 777-200As to be reconfigured into a high density configuration. Those high capacity 364 seat planes flying multiple cycles per day between the hubs has certainly driven up ASMs.

UA also has flexibility if the US economy goes into recession. The 20+ year old 777-200s, 737-700s and A320s can quickly be parked if demand drops. They are all paid off so it allows them to operate when demand is high
 
evank516
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:36 pm

Newbiepilot wrote:
I think we are seeing the effect of United adding all the used A319s to the fleet. It appears to be a very smart decision. Chinese airlines are slot constrained and dumping relatively young 737-700s and A319s because they need to upgauge. UA is not slot constrained at many airports so they can take advantage of cheap 10-15 year old airplanes with plenty of life in them. Where United is slot constrained, they have used A319s to cause a cascading domino of upgauging flights from E175s which in turn were used to upgauge ERJ145 flights. Looks like smart and opportunistic fleet planning.

Delta is taking many new airplanes, but they also have MD88s/90s that need retirement. Keeping the older planes flying is not as viable as an option. UA having a younger domestic fleet looks like it is helpful so they can react to changing market demand.

We are also seeing the impact of the 787 deliveries. UA is adding widebodies and not retiring widebodies. This has allowed all the 777-200As to be reconfigured into a high density configuration. Those high capacity 364 seat planes flying multiple cycles per day between the hubs has certainly driven up ASMs.

UA also has flexibility if the US economy goes into recession. The 20+ year old 777-200s, 737-700s and A320s can quickly be parked if demand drops. They are all paid off so it allows them to operate when demand is high


UA seems to be adopting the strategy that DL adopted about 6 or so years ago. This will put them on a path to success as DL did very well with this used aircraft strategy. It grew their MD-90 fleet quite a bit and we saw lots more of them flying around. I remember when they were mostly based out of SLC and you rarely ever saw them on the East Coast. Now they're everywhere!

The MD-80s and MD-90s with Delta are going to be retired in the next couple of years while taking delivery of newer aircraft so I'm not exactly sure what you're getting at about keeping the older planes. They're not planning to keep them. In the end, I think DL and UA will probably end up being the two stronger carriers in the US and AA might end up trailing.
 
Prost
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:58 pm

It’s an interesting metric that I haven’t seen AA, UA, nor DL really tout.
 
Sightseer
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 3:53 pm

Newbiepilot wrote:
Delta is taking many new airplanes, but they also have MD88s/90s that need retirement. Keeping the older planes flying is not as viable as an option. UA having a younger domestic fleet looks like it is helpful so they can react to changing market demand.

Not sure I follow. The above seems to contradict the following:
Newbiepilot wrote:
UA also has flexibility if the US economy goes into recession. The 20+ year old 777-200s, 737-700s and A320s can quickly be parked if demand drops.

For the record, I'm more inclined to believe the second statement than the first.
 
Detroit313
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 4:01 pm

American is at No1 with a huge lead.

No2 United.

No3 Delta Airlines.
 
IAHWorldflyer
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 4:05 pm

UA today is a much better airline than the UA of 2012-2014. I flew them yesterday ( well technically Republic dba United Express) and the inbound plane was late getting to the gate. The crew and gate agents were able to turn an E175 in 25 minutes and we left slightly early. That would not have happened 4 years ago. UA mainline cabin service has also improved and on time performance is back to where it should be. The best thing that happened to UA was Smisek getting fired.
 
United1
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 4:30 pm

Sightseer wrote:
Newbiepilot wrote:
Delta is taking many new airplanes, but they also have MD88s/90s that need retirement. Keeping the older planes flying is not as viable as an option. UA having a younger domestic fleet looks like it is helpful so they can react to changing market demand.

Not sure I follow. The above seems to contradict the following:
Newbiepilot wrote:
UA also has flexibility if the US economy goes into recession. The 20+ year old 777-200s, 737-700s and A320s can quickly be parked if demand drops.

For the record, I'm more inclined to believe the second statement than the first.


I think what he is trying to say is UAs has the flexibility to either keep its older aircraft flying or retire them if the economy goes soth. Some of UAs 737NGs and A320s are getting up there in age but its easy to get parts and do maintenance on those fleets vs the Mad Dogs which are getting harder to source parts for and find vendors to maintain those aircraft. That’s why UA has been able to do this expansion relatively inexpensively...there isn’t a pressing need to retire their fleet.
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Detroit313
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 5:06 pm

UA's new strategy is paying off.
 
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Acey559
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 5:19 pm

The thing that struck me about this is that UAL stock was up 24% for the year, while the others lost ground. I know it isn’t the most important thing to look at, but it seems that investors like what UA is doing.
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Okcflyer
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 5:21 pm

Less than half of the used A319 and A320's planned are on property. A good portion of this growth is through rebanking and tightening utilization that was originally slowed down to help fix the on-time issue.

There are still more than 100 Max 9 and Max 10's still to arrivein the coming couple of years in addition to the 10-12 year old A319/A320's arriving. These will mostly be for growth although if things tank, UA can defer some and start scrapping older A320's and 737/738's.
 
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lugie
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 5:41 pm

IAHWorldflyer wrote:
UA today is a much better airline than the UA of 2012-2014. I flew them yesterday ( well technically Republic dba United Express) and the inbound plane was late getting to the gate. The crew and gate agents were able to turn an E175 in 25 minutes and we left slightly early. That would not have happened 4 years ago. UA mainline cabin service has also improved and on time performance is back to where it should be. The best thing that happened to UA was Smisek getting fired.


I would concur with that statement. Flew them on Tuesday FRA-ORD, the Triple 7 was about as old as I am (21 years and a couple of months) but inside it felt like it was built last summer, their refreshed cabin was a great experience. The crew was also very friendly and attentive and by what I could judge from the F/As serving my part of the cabin, rather young (by US3 / EU3 standards). I sincerely hope they can profitably follow through on that path, would make them truly live up to their status as the US' major intercontinental carrier.
Q400 E175 CRJ9 CRJX MD88 A319 A320 A321 A332 A333 B733 B738 B739 B748 B764 B772 B788
X3 LH 4U TP US YX SN EI FR LA YW IB CM UA DL 9E
FRA STR HAM TXL ZRH ACE BRU BLL DUB MAN MAD OPO LIS FNC AMS PHL RDU LGA CLT EWR ORD ATL SJO PTY
 
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intotheair
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:40 pm

Congratulations to UA for finally figuring out how to run an airline well. The Smisek years were definitely some dark ones.

I looked back at my own statistics and suddenly realized that I only flew UA in the last year. Aside from those awful CRJs, I can't think of a bad experience on UA in that time.
300 319 320 321 332 333 345 346 717 733 734 735 73G 738 739 744 752 753 762 763 772 788 789 CR2 CR7 CR9 Q400 E175 DC10 MD82 MD90
AA AF AS AY AZ B6 BA BR DL F9 FI GA HA KF LH MI QX SK SN SQ UA US VY WN
 
N649DL
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:46 pm

And yet #1 in terms of outsourcing and operating the most 50-seat regional jets of the Big 3 carriers.
 
yonikasz
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:00 pm

Another good thing about UA is that they probably have the best hub locations of any US carrier.
 
Fargo
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:10 pm

So when is UA going to start upgauging from those 50 seat CRJ’s and add more mainline to its core interior hubs of ORD, IAH and DEN?
 
flight152
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:29 pm

Fargo wrote:
So when is UA going to start upgauging from those 50 seat CRJ’s and add more mainline to its core interior hubs of ORD, IAH and DEN?

They have been for the last several years if you’ve been watching.
 
SESGDL
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:32 pm

Newbiepilot wrote:
I think we are seeing the effect of United adding all the used A319s to the fleet. It appears to be a very smart decision. Chinese airlines are slot constrained and dumping relatively young 737-700s and A319s because they need to upgauge. UA is not slot constrained at many airports so they can take advantage of cheap 10-15 year old airplanes with plenty of life in them. Where United is slot constrained, they have used A319s to cause a cascading domino of upgauging flights from E175s which in turn were used to upgauge ERJ145 flights. Looks like smart and opportunistic fleet planning.

Delta is taking many new airplanes, but they also have MD88s/90s that need retirement. Keeping the older planes flying is not as viable as an option. UA having a younger domestic fleet looks like it is helpful so they can react to changing market demand.

We are also seeing the impact of the 787 deliveries. UA is adding widebodies and not retiring widebodies. This has allowed all the 777-200As to be reconfigured into a high density configuration. Those high capacity 364 seat planes flying multiple cycles per day between the hubs has certainly driven up ASMs.

UA also has flexibility if the US economy goes into recession. The 20+ year old 777-200s, 737-700s and A320s can quickly be parked if demand drops. They are all paid off so it allows them to operate when demand is high


United's rise is much more attributable to its aggressive international growth rather than its growth in mainline Airbuses. DL's mainline fleet has grown the most of any of the US3, however, it's been almost entirely narrowbody aircraft, which contribute less to RPMs/ASMs than do large widebody aircraft that are flying thousands of miles everyday.

Jeremy
 
MIflyer12
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:34 pm

flight152 wrote:
Fargo wrote:
So when is UA going to start upgauging from those 50 seat CRJ’s and add more mainline to its core interior hubs of ORD, IAH and DEN?

They have been for the last several years if you’ve been watching.


It's hard to save they've been upgauging -- they've been adding 50-seaters on net, not dropping them. https://aviationvoice.com/united-airlin ... 801261409/
 
alasizon
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:44 pm

yonikasz wrote:
Another good thing about UA is that they probably have the best hub locations of any US carrier.


Based on what though? Largest markets, yes. But operationally the combo of SFO, ORD and EWR can really hamper the operation when WX or ATC is bad. IAD to a lesser extent as well.
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ual777
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:08 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
flight152 wrote:
Fargo wrote:
So when is UA going to start upgauging from those 50 seat CRJ’s and add more mainline to its core interior hubs of ORD, IAH and DEN?

They have been for the last several years if you’ve been watching.


It's hard to save they've been upgauging -- they've been adding 50-seaters on net, not dropping them. https://aviationvoice.com/united-airlin ... 801261409/


Only because they are maxed out on 76 seaters.

There are a TON of destinations that have gotten mainline additions over the past few years. MEM, BNA, SAV, TUL, OMA, and that's just off the top of my head.
It is always darkest before the sun comes up.
 
flyguy84
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:11 pm

ual777 wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
flight152 wrote:
They have been for the last several years if you’ve been watching.


It's hard to save they've been upgauging -- they've been adding 50-seaters on net, not dropping them. https://aviationvoice.com/united-airlin ... 801261409/


Only because they are maxed out on 76 seaters.

There are a TON of destinations that have gotten mainline additions over the past few years. MEM, BNA, SAV, TUL, OMA, and that's just off the top of my head.

EUG, FAT, MAF, CRP, TVC, DLH, TUS, ELP, BUR
SFO
 
kipfilet
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:17 pm

Acey559 wrote:
The thing that struck me about this is that UAL stock was up 24% for the year, while the others lost ground. I know it isn’t the most important thing to look at, but it seems that investors like what UA is doing.

Probably the most important thing to look at, as stock price fluctuations are primarily based on expectations of future profitability.
 
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lightsaber
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 10:46 pm

Newbiepilot wrote:
I think we are seeing the effect of United adding all the used A319s to the fleet. It appears to be a very smart decision. Chinese airlines are slot constrained and dumping relatively young 737-700s and A319s because they need to upgauge. UA is not slot constrained at many airports so they can take advantage of cheap 10-15 year old airplanes with plenty of life in them. Where United is slot constrained, they have used A319s to cause a cascading domino of upgauging flights from E175s which in turn were used to upgauge ERJ145 flights. Looks like smart and opportunistic fleet planning.

Delta is taking many new airplanes, but they also have MD88s/90s that need retirement. Keeping the older planes flying is not as viable as an option. UA having a younger domestic fleet looks like it is helpful so they can react to changing market demand.

We are also seeing the impact of the 787 deliveries. UA is adding widebodies and not retiring widebodies. This has allowed all the 777-200As to be reconfigured into a high density configuration. Those high capacity 364 seat planes flying multiple cycles per day between the hubs has certainly driven up ASMs.

UA also has flexibility if the US economy goes into recession. The 20+ year old 777-200s, 737-700s and A320s can quickly be parked if demand drops. They are all paid off so it allows them to operate when demand is high

Taking unpopular airframes can be wise. In particular if flying at only high RASM times with a significant premium customer base as US airlines have.

But it isn't just China. Cebu Pacific and easyJet are also returning a lot if A319s.

One issue is Sharklets and engine PIPs reduced the cost per flight difference between the A319 and A320 (same happened with 737). This means high utilization airlines (anywhere) do not want the shrinks (due to the greater size difference between the 73G and 738 there is still more of a cost difference, and WN needed a lot quick).

So for UA (and others in the US), being wise about expansion is smart. DL chose to pay down debt over buying used A319s. UA made the better short term choice. Long term I think the A220 will be wise. Let the debate begin. ;) Oh, because UA bought so cheap, before it really matters, they can replace the CEOs... So UA made a wise purchase decision. In today's oil environment, flog the A319s for maximum revenue/profit.

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lightsaber
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 10:56 pm

alasizon wrote:
yonikasz wrote:
Another good thing about UA is that they probably have the best hub locations of any US carrier.


Based on what though? Largest markets, yes. But operationally the combo of SFO, ORD and EWR can really hamper the operation when WX or ATC is bad. IAD to a lesser extent as well.

I would concur that geographic location, over the year, benefits UA. DEN is an awesome hub for the West. EWR has scale. IAD... Meh, but it works. SFO has the economy and location. IAH paired with DEN works. I would argue ORD is getting long in the tooth and is being bypassed. But as a group, UA has excellent hub locations.

But all of the US3 have good hubs...
UA: SFO/LAX, DEN, EWR, ORD, EWR, IAD
DL: SEA, SLC, DTW, ATL, JFK
AA: PHX, DFW, ORD, JFK, CLT

Middle ground is WN is WN (but they try for direct or one stop):
PHX, LAS, DEN, DAL, HOU, MDW, BWI
(Middle as there East coast network needs expansion IMHO, I find too many routes with poor timing)


Regional only:
AS: ANC, SEA, SFO
B6: JFK, BOS, FLL

Lightsaber
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Fargo
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:12 pm

lightsaber wrote:
I would argue ORD is getting long in the tooth and is being bypassed.


How so? While I agree they haven't emphasized it as much in recent years, it is still UA's largest hub and they are about to embark on a major expansion project. The issue holding UA back at ORD is the continued presence of AA. Without AA, UA would likely build up ORD to ATL levels.
 
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United787
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:23 pm

Fargo wrote:
lightsaber wrote:
I would argue ORD is getting long in the tooth and is being bypassed.


How so? While I agree they haven't emphasized it as much in recent years, it is still UA's largest hub and they are about to embark on a major expansion project. The issue holding UA back at ORD is the continued presence of AA. Without AA, UA would likely build up ORD to ATL levels.


The biggest issue holding UA back at ORD is the quantity of gates and the size of the gates. They are maxed out. And I am not sure they can upgauge a lot of flights more than they have because of gate sizes. If they had more space, they would be crushing generican...
 
Fargo
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:12 am

United787 wrote:
Fargo wrote:
lightsaber wrote:
I would argue ORD is getting long in the tooth and is being bypassed.


How so? While I agree they haven't emphasized it as much in recent years, it is still UA's largest hub and they are about to embark on a major expansion project. The issue holding UA back at ORD is the continued presence of AA. Without AA, UA would likely build up ORD to ATL levels.


The biggest issue holding UA back at ORD is the quantity of gates and the size of the gates. They are maxed out. And I am not sure they can upgauge a lot of flights more than they have because of gate sizes. If they had more space, they would be crushing generican...


So after the O'Hare 21 construction, UA will have the ability to squeeze AA and possibly begin the process of forcing them out?
 
flyguy84
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:20 am

Fargo wrote:
United787 wrote:
Fargo wrote:

How so? While I agree they haven't emphasized it as much in recent years, it is still UA's largest hub and they are about to embark on a major expansion project. The issue holding UA back at ORD is the continued presence of AA. Without AA, UA would likely build up ORD to ATL levels.


The biggest issue holding UA back at ORD is the quantity of gates and the size of the gates. They are maxed out. And I am not sure they can upgauge a lot of flights more than they have because of gate sizes. If they had more space, they would be crushing generican...


So after the O'Hare 21 construction, UA will have the ability to squeeze AA and possibly begin the process of forcing them out?

They’ll never force AA out. But they will be able to begin adding more flights and continue to upguage....
SFO
 
United1
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Re: United #2 Airline Again

Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:35 am

SESGDL wrote:
Newbiepilot wrote:
I think we are seeing the effect of United adding all the used A319s to the fleet. It appears to be a very smart decision. Chinese airlines are slot constrained and dumping relatively young 737-700s and A319s because they need to upgauge. UA is not slot constrained at many airports so they can take advantage of cheap 10-15 year old airplanes with plenty of life in them. Where United is slot constrained, they have used A319s to cause a cascading domino of upgauging flights from E175s which in turn were used to upgauge ERJ145 flights. Looks like smart and opportunistic fleet planning.

Delta is taking many new airplanes, but they also have MD88s/90s that need retirement. Keeping the older planes flying is not as viable as an option. UA having a younger domestic fleet looks like it is helpful so they can react to changing market demand.

We are also seeing the impact of the 787 deliveries. UA is adding widebodies and not retiring widebodies. This has allowed all the 777-200As to be reconfigured into a high density configuration. Those high capacity 364 seat planes flying multiple cycles per day between the hubs has certainly driven up ASMs.

UA also has flexibility if the US economy goes into recession. The 20+ year old 777-200s, 737-700s and A320s can quickly be parked if demand drops. They are all paid off so it allows them to operate when demand is high


United's rise is much more attributable to its aggressive international growth rather than its growth in mainline Airbuses. DL's mainline fleet has grown the most of any of the US3, however, it's been almost entirely narrowbody aircraft, which contribute less to RPMs/ASMs than do large widebody aircraft that are flying thousands of miles everyday.

Jeremy


UA has been growing rapidly internationally but looking at RSMs UA grew by 8,687 million RSMs domestically in 2018 and 5,207 million RSMs internationally in 2018. Those A319s, 7M9s, additional RJs and better use of existing aircraft really generated a lot of domestic RSMs this year. AA hasn't reported full year numbers but looking at DL they grew by fewer domestic RSMs than UA did. Probably because even though they did take delivery of more aircraft than UA did DL also retired a significant number of aircraft last year.
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
seatback
Posts: 599
Joined: Thu Mar 28, 2002 3:00 am

Re: United #2 Airline Again

Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:52 am

lightsaber wrote:
alasizon wrote:
yonikasz wrote:
Another good thing about UA is that they probably have the best hub locations of any US carrier.


Based on what though? Largest markets, yes. But operationally the combo of SFO, ORD and EWR can really hamper the operation when WX or ATC is bad. IAD to a lesser extent as well.

I would concur that geographic location, over the year, benefits UA. DEN is an awesome hub for the West. EWR has scale. IAD... Meh, but it works. SFO has the economy and location. IAH paired with DEN works. I would argue ORD is getting long in the tooth and is being bypassed. But as a group, UA has excellent hub locations.

But all of the US3 have good hubs...
UA: SFO/LAX, DEN, EWR, ORD, EWR, IAD
DL: SEA, SLC, DTW, ATL, JFK
AA: PHX, DFW, ORD, JFK, CLT

Middle ground is WN is WN (but they try for direct or one stop):
PHX, LAS, DEN, DAL, HOU, MDW, BWI
(Middle as there East coast network needs expansion IMHO, I find too many routes with poor timing)


Regional only:
AS: ANC, SEA, SFO
B6: JFK, BOS, FLL

Lightsaber


I believe the best hubs of the three are:

AA: DFW/MIA/CLT/PHL
UA: SFO/ORD/EWR
DL: ATL/MSP/DTW

Hubs not listed are probably only marginally profitable.
 
soflaflyer
Posts: 149
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2008 10:35 pm

Re: United #2 Airline Again

Fri Jan 11, 2019 3:16 am

seatback wrote:
lightsaber wrote:
alasizon wrote:

Based on what though? Largest markets, yes. But operationally the combo of SFO, ORD and EWR can really hamper the operation when WX or ATC is bad. IAD to a lesser extent as well.

I would concur that geographic location, over the year, benefits UA. DEN is an awesome hub for the West. EWR has scale. IAD... Meh, but it works. SFO has the economy and location. IAH paired with DEN works. I would argue ORD is getting long in the tooth and is being bypassed. But as a group, UA has excellent hub locations.

But all of the US3 have good hubs...
UA: SFO/LAX, DEN, EWR, ORD, EWR, IAD
DL: SEA, SLC, DTW, ATL, JFK
AA: PHX, DFW, ORD, JFK, CLT

Middle ground is WN is WN (but they try for direct or one stop):
PHX, LAS, DEN, DAL, HOU, MDW, BWI
(Middle as there East coast network needs expansion IMHO, I find too many routes with poor timing)


Regional only:
AS: ANC, SEA, SFO
B6: JFK, BOS, FLL

Lightsaber


I believe the best hubs of the three are:

AA: DFW/MIA/CLT/PHL
UA: SFO/ORD/EWR
DL: ATL/MSP/DTW

Hubs not listed are probably only marginally profitable.

I seriously doubt that DCA for AA is "marginally profitable".
 
User avatar
Acey559
Posts: 1273
Joined: Wed Jan 24, 2007 3:30 pm

Re: United #2 Airline Again

Fri Jan 11, 2019 3:26 am

kipfilet wrote:
Acey559 wrote:
The thing that struck me about this is that UAL stock was up 24% for the year, while the others lost ground. I know it isn’t the most important thing to look at, but it seems that investors like what UA is doing.

Probably the most important thing to look at, as stock price fluctuations are primarily based on expectations of future profitability.


Fair enough. Shows how much I know about the stock market. That’s why I fly and not day trade. :D
In Dixie Land I'll take my stand to live and die in Dixie.
 
User avatar
LAX772LR
Posts: 11452
Joined: Sun Nov 09, 2014 11:06 pm

Re: United #2 Airline Again

Fri Jan 11, 2019 3:28 am

seatback wrote:
Hubs not listed are probably only marginally profitable.

Poor assumption.

UA has quite publicly touted the profitability of its DEN hub, for years.
I myself, suspect a more prosaic motive... ~Thranduil
 
C010T3
Posts: 1900
Joined: Wed Jul 19, 2006 5:48 am

Re: United #2 Airline Again

Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:00 am

flyguy84 wrote:
They’ll never force AA out. But they will be able to begin adding more flights and continue to upguage....


They could though increase the heat in the long- haul market from ORD. That would be a step in decreasing the importance of AA at ORD, if they were to abandon intercontinental routes.
 
UWPAviation
Posts: 70
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2016 7:36 pm

Re: United #2 Airline Again (Revenue Passenger Miles)

Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:11 am

I recently flew UA for the first time in 9 years. I was extremely impressed with everything. Cabin was nice and clean, crew was extremely nice and helpful. A fantastic experience.

I told my wife we would definitely be flying UA much more in the future! Fingers crossed for a MKE-SFO route!
 
Coalways
Posts: 134
Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2008 5:39 am

Re: United #2 Airline Again (Revenue Passenger Miles)

Sat Jan 12, 2019 1:58 pm

Does any one know the gap between AA & UA now and what it was before all the mergers?
 
Fargo
Posts: 281
Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2018 3:00 am

Re: United #2 Airline Again

Sat Jan 12, 2019 2:51 pm

C010T3 wrote:
flyguy84 wrote:
They’ll never force AA out. But they will be able to begin adding more flights and continue to upguage....


They could though increase the heat in the long- haul market from ORD. That would be a step in decreasing the importance of AA at ORD, if they were to abandon intercontinental routes.


This is what I was thinking.

Perhaps UA’s biggest network achillies heel is they have to compete directly with AA at their largest and hometown hub, thus preventing them from expanding ORD to the scale of ATL/DFW. Once O’Hare 21 gets underway, they need to go all out and target AA at every corner to undermine their Chicago operation, from international and domestic routes to corporate contracts to gate space, etc.

Also, like I’ve said before, if they could get the A220 and deploy it to ORD and start upgauging more routes to mainline, they could get a significant advantage over AA to the point where AA’s ORD bottom line would be significantly hurt.
 
OB1504
Posts: 3385
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2004 5:10 am

Re: United #2 Airline Again

Sat Jan 12, 2019 5:34 pm

yonikasz wrote:
Another good thing about UA is that they probably have the best hub locations of any US carrier.


Not if you’re in the southeast.
 
trav777
Posts: 126
Joined: Wed Jan 09, 2019 7:17 pm

Re: United #2 Airline Again

Sat Jan 12, 2019 6:13 pm

soflaflyer wrote:
seatback wrote:
lightsaber wrote:
I would concur that geographic location, over the year, benefits UA. DEN is an awesome hub for the West. EWR has scale. IAD... Meh, but it works. SFO has the economy and location. IAH paired with DEN works. I would argue ORD is getting long in the tooth and is being bypassed. But as a group, UA has excellent hub locations.

But all of the US3 have good hubs...
UA: SFO/LAX, DEN, EWR, ORD, EWR, IAD
DL: SEA, SLC, DTW, ATL, JFK
AA: PHX, DFW, ORD, JFK, CLT

Middle ground is WN is WN (but they try for direct or one stop):
PHX, LAS, DEN, DAL, HOU, MDW, BWI
(Middle as there East coast network needs expansion IMHO, I find too many routes with poor timing)


Regional only:
AS: ANC, SEA, SFO
B6: JFK, BOS, FLL

Lightsaber


I believe the best hubs of the three are:

AA: DFW/MIA/CLT/PHL
UA: SFO/ORD/EWR
DL: ATL/MSP/DTW

Hubs not listed are probably only marginally profitable.

I seriously doubt that DCA for AA is "marginally profitable".


AA is killing it at DCA. They run a 10-gate remote stand with regionals...basically this thing is a perimeter-rule hub for them. Very convenient and they have a stranglehold on this airport
 
United1
Posts: 3670
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

Re: United #2 Airline Again (Revenue Passenger Miles)

Sat Jan 12, 2019 6:38 pm

Coalways wrote:
Does any one know the gap between AA & UA now and what it was before all the mergers?


I don't think AA has published full year operational results yet but they did state projected ASMs in an investor update a couple of days ago.

ASMs
AA 282.1 Billion (2.0 % growth over 2017) projected
UA 275.3 Billion (4.9% growth over 2017) actual
DL 263.4 Billion (3.6% growth over 2017) actual
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
MSPNWA
Posts: 2898
Joined: Thu Apr 23, 2009 2:48 am

Re: United #2 Airline Again (Revenue Passenger Miles)

Sat Jan 12, 2019 8:48 pm

United1 wrote:
Coalways wrote:
Does any one know the gap between AA & UA now and what it was before all the mergers?


I don't think AA has published full year operational results yet but they did state projected ASMs in an investor update a couple of days ago.

ASMs
AA 282.1 Billion (2.0 % growth over 2017) projected
UA 275.3 Billion (4.9% growth over 2017) actual
DL 263.4 Billion (3.6% growth over 2017) actual


Another year of those rates and UA is the largest carrier by ASMs.

Also UA is going to be very close to DL on revenue this year.
 
United1
Posts: 3670
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

Re: United #2 Airline Again (Revenue Passenger Miles)

Sat Jan 12, 2019 9:31 pm

MSPNWA wrote:
United1 wrote:
Coalways wrote:
Does any one know the gap between AA & UA now and what it was before all the mergers?


I don't think AA has published full year operational results yet but they did state projected ASMs in an investor update a couple of days ago.

ASMs
AA 282.1 Billion (2.0 % growth over 2017) projected
UA 275.3 Billion (4.9% growth over 2017) actual
DL 263.4 Billion (3.6% growth over 2017) actual


Another year of those rates and UA is the largest carrier by ASMs.

Also UA is going to be very close to DL on revenue this year.


Looking at revenue UA will be around 3 billion behind AA and DL in revenue this year. You may be thinking about AA and DL who are going to be very close this year.

If UA keeps growing at the 5 to 6% rate they have forecasted for the next couple of years they should easily pass AA.
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!

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