Delta's Mainline Downsizing At DFW

Tue Jan 14, 2003 9:40 am

Hello all, In recent years Delta has been cutting mainline service into DFW and increasing RJ Flights from DFW.

My question is why is Delta doing this? Is DFW not profitable?

Any help is appreciated

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RE: Delta's Mainline Downsizing At DFW

Tue Jan 14, 2003 9:56 am

Just my opinion, but I think DAL finally decided that without a huge commitment, they could not compete with AA at DFW. So there were two choices, make the big commitment and compete with AA, or concede DFW to AA, and use the RJ to try to maintain a presence and cherry pick a few passengers from AA.
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RE: Delta's Mainline Downsizing At DFW

Tue Jan 14, 2003 10:02 am

They're cutting in DFW to shift resources to ATL and CVG where they can be better utilized.

Basically DL has realized that they won't be able to make DFW a mega hub and compete with AA's fortress. So they will focus on ATL and CVG.

This is a very wise move if you ask me, as much as it hurts DFW.

"Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need." - Khalil Gibran
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RE: Delta's Mainline Downsizing At DFW

Tue Jan 14, 2003 12:53 pm

because regional jets are the way of the future!
Last year 1,944 New Yorkers saw something and said something.
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RE: Delta's Mainline Downsizing At DFW

Tue Jan 14, 2003 3:05 pm

I believe this move is not thought out completely by the individuals in Atlanta.

Yeah, management wanted to duplicate the 3 Replacement Jets to every 1 Delta mainline, sort of like they have accomplished in CVG. But, CVG will still operate widebody jets in and out its station, DFW will have none.

DFW is unique hub for Delta, mainly a bridge connection hub, which now will have very few mainline jets to continue the movement from outline stations as well as the other hubs from both coast. One can only sell so many tickets from a small city operated by RJ's connecting to a smaller mainline jet.

This effect will cause "spillover" passengers who will then be picked up by the competition i.e American, Airtrans..ect... With one of Delta's highest yield markets DFW-ATL-DFW, it is confusing why they are cutting the number of seats in this market dramatically. And with the problems plaguing UA, now Delta is pulling all the mainline seats out of the DFW-DEN market and replacing the flights with the Replacement Jets. How many skis can one strap on the outside of an RJ?

Another great opportunity for Airtran or American to expand to Denver. Sounds like Airtran is already jumping into the ATL-DEN market.

Overall, I see Delta making a big mistake in DFW with these dramatic cuts in mainline service. Delta will be forced to reinstate the bigger a/c to accommodate all the RJ passengers that will soon come to DFW. Watch for major expansion and more new cities to be announced by DCI.
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RE: Delta's Mainline Downsizing At DFW

Tue Jan 14, 2003 11:00 pm

Sorry M839MH, but I have to agree with DL's moves. DFW is currently losing DL a lot of money and DFW has the lowest load-factor of DL's four domestic hubs. DL cannot afford to continue running half-empty widebodies through DFW. The only way DL has ever been able to fill widebodies out of DFW is through massive discounting...which is not a good way to make money.

Most business travelers long ago abandoned DL because DL has too few frequencies in most markets. The RJ's will at least allow DL to be more competitive in that arena.

I agree with you that DL will announce more DCI flights out of DFW in the coming months/years. Hopefully, someday DL will be able to build up enough feed in DFW to warrant the return of widebodies to ATL and mainline to places like DEN. But for now, with the economy depressed and yields at all time lows, DL needs to move the widebodies to the hubs that can actually fill them.

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RE: Delta's Mainline Downsizing At DFW

Wed Jan 15, 2003 2:11 am

You make some good points...on some markets we are only putting 50-80 paxs on a 767-300 i.e DL476 & DL669 FLL & MCO. But not to have any widebody's on the DFW-ATL market or even DFW-SLC is interesting with all the downline feed we put on those flights. Another example, DL199 leaves at 1550, DFW-SLC-ANC, a B767-300. Now this flight runs 90-100% load factor, granted these days, the majority of the fares are L, U or T fares...lowest restricted, internet fares. The paxs connecting in SLC is usually over a 100 or so with aprox 40-60 paxs staying on the a/c and continuing to ANC.

DL199 starts out in MCO and there are paxs who start there and go all the way to SLC or even onto ANC. My point is, to do just a blanket withdrawal of the widebody's in DFW does not make sense, some markets still need the 767's. We will see, maybe DCI can generate enough traffic for those in ATL to change there minds.
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RE: Delta's Mainline Downsizing At DFW

Wed Jan 15, 2003 4:09 am

From the notes of a DAL Chief Pilot meeting--No DAL hub is profitable at this time. DFW is the least so.TC
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RE: Delta's Mainline Downsizing At DFW

Wed Jan 15, 2003 5:01 am

Leaving just a few widebodies in DFW isn't smart, crew scheduling for such a boutique plane would be too costly.

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