ammunition
Posts: 875
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2002 6:25 am

Minimum Number Of Airlines The World Could Sustain

Wed Mar 20, 2002 10:22 pm

does anyone have any idea how many airlines there will be in say 20/30 years time, or even 50 years time. Is it likely that there will only be like 1 major airline per continent or 1 or 2 airlines for the whole world? Demand is increasing year after year, and passanger numbers are growing, and air travel is becoming popular and affordable amongst almost anyone, but with the number of airlines there are out there, is it possible for say europe to have a different airline for every country? or america to survive with say the 5/6 major airlines they have, with all increasingly competative market? will there come a stage when the market will be oversaturated with airlines, and they will force each other bankrupt competeing for passangers?... maybe even undercutting the competitor to make them go out of business, losing money in maybe the short term?
what will the airline industry look like in 25 years, or half a century?
will it be a few airlines per continent- as predicted by many, with the alliances like star, one world and skyteam, is this just the beginning or early stages of the mega airlines of the future? will they rebrand and become 1 airline, or will they contnue to compete as alliances?
Saint Augustine- 'The world is a book and those who do not travel, read only 1 page'
 
TriStar500
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RE: Minimum Number Of Airlines The World Could Sustain

Wed Mar 20, 2002 10:24 pm

Sounds like a very good - and very hard - topic for a thesis.
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jwenting
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RE: Minimum Number Of Airlines The World Could Sustain

Wed Mar 20, 2002 10:31 pm

I don't think a lot will change. The names may be different, but the current mix of a few large ones (probably growing larger) and a lot of small ones will continue.

Large airlines tend to be inflexible and expensive to operate. A lot of routes that are not profitable for them are profitable for a smaller more flexible company with less overhead.
As the majors grow ever larger and more bureaucratic they'll be scrapping ever more low-volume routes because they can't make them pay for themselves.
Smaller airlines will step in and take these on, growing large and inflexible in the process and the story continues...
I wish I were flying
 
ammunition
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RE: Minimum Number Of Airlines The World Could Sustain

Wed Mar 20, 2002 11:44 pm

any more ideas?
Saint Augustine- 'The world is a book and those who do not travel, read only 1 page'
 
Arsenal@LHR
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RE: Minimum Number Of Airlines The World Could Sustain

Thu Mar 21, 2002 12:31 am

Im my opinion, in 20 years time, i think there will 4 or 5 major airlines serving europe, with a few low cost outfits (easyjet, Ryanair etc). In the US there will probably be 4 or 5 carriers aswell (DL, UA, AA, CO NW) again with cheap no-frills services serving smaller markets.

Just my opinion

Arsenal@LHR
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acidradio
Crew
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RE: Minimum Number Of Airlines The World Could Sustain

Thu Mar 21, 2002 12:57 am

The scene in terms of aircraft availability may change as well. If more manufacturers step into the scene (or current manufacturers start to make products that compete against each other), prices may become lower which translates into more available service and more options on how to provide that service in a cost-effective, efficient manner. While Airbus and Boeing are currently the only two manufacturers in the 100+ seat market, some other manufacturers (Dornier, Bombardier, Embraer) are already working on 90 seat aircraft and who knows what is next to come. While there are only two manufacturers at the moment in the 100+ seat market, there may be more in the future.

Anyways, to make a long story short, the cheaper it is to get into a new aircraft, the easier it is for smaller startup airlines to acquire aircraft and run a business, keeping up the number of airlines you may see in the future. Or, if a startup doesn't acquire a brand-new aircraft, larger airlines that are already established may be replacing parts of their fleet and selling off their used aircraft, further driving the used aircraft market.
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Greg
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RE: Minimum Number Of Airlines The World Could Sustain

Thu Mar 21, 2002 1:02 am

Airlines are a nationalistic symbol. So, there will always be those nations that will operate one for political purposes.
 
Spark
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RE: Minimum Number Of Airlines The World Could Sustain

Thu Mar 21, 2002 11:24 am

If you look at the post-regulation airlines, things have pretty much remained the same. The players have changed (Pan Am, TWA became United, Delta, and American). Most of the bigger airlines own regional airlines, which control service to the smaller airports. I expect that to continue.
As far as the politics of countries operating their own airlines; there must maintain at least a hope of profitability. I doubt countries will continue to subsidize airlines that don't remotely become profitable. Especially if other airlines can serve your region more efficieintly.

As was said earlier, this is a very difficult topic. A very good research topic.
I do think the number of airports will drop. As it looks now, there are bigger regional airports, serving cities within a three hour drive. The smaller airports are becoming less important. Case in-point. I fly to Central Wisconsin to visit relatives. We used to fly to Green Bay or Appleton, connecting from either MSP or ORD. Now I'm more likely to fly to MKE, or even just do a non-stop flight to Chicago. I'm willing to drive the extra distance for a better price.