ssides
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WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 12:32 am

I believe that WN has a set of specific criteria that must be in place before it enters a new market. One of the keys, of course, is population of the metro area. Another is the annual passenger load at the particular airport

Does anyone know what these figures are? Someone had mentioned the possiblity of WN expanding to LRD in the next 5 years; just wanted to see if that might be possible.
"Lose" is not spelled with two o's!!!!
 
luv2fly
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RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 12:34 am

I believe it has to support a minimum of ten flights a day.
You can cut the irony with a knife
 
DodgeCharger
Posts: 210
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2003 6:38 am

RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 12:38 am

The airport is a big factor. WN generally looks at smaller less congested airports if possible. I think that is one reason they have never started service at DFW. They dont want to be sitting on the ground for 30 minutes waiting to takeoff.
 
goingboeing
Posts: 4727
Joined: Sat Dec 04, 1999 1:58 am

RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 12:57 am

From the website of an Airport that would really like to have SWA serve them, but doesn't have the traffic to justify it (TRI):

Southwest’s business model requires they have sufficient demand to support 8 – 12 round trip flights a day aboard a Boeing 737 aircraft seating between 122 and 137 people to at least two destinations.
 
prosa
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RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 1:04 am

The airport is a big factor. WN generally looks at smaller less congested airports if possible. I think that is one reason they have never started service at DFW. They dont want to be sitting on the ground for 30 minutes waiting to takeoff.

That, and the fact that WN might be reluctant to get into a pitched battle with AA on its home turf.
"Let me think about it" = the coward's way of saying "no"
 
DCA-ROCguy
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RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 2:06 am

WN's 10-dailies minimum for new markets will increasingly limit them during the next decade. AirTran and JetBlue are willing to enter new markets with as few as 2-5 dailies. Although all three carriers are often called "point-to-point' carriers, the fact is that all three operate hubs as well. What else can one call Southwest's PHX, BWI, MDW, and LAS operations?

AirTran and JetBlue will be able to offer many more connecting-pair opportunities and market possibilities with low fares, than Southwest will, by later in the decade. Yes, I know the 10-dailies rule helps protect Southwest's 7.4-cent CASM. But the proven geniuses at Southwest will need to find another way to do it, if they want to keep pace with their competitors, and tap the full profit potential of the LCC business model, during the decade.

Jim
Need a new airline paint scheme? Better call Saul! (Bass that is)
 
ScottB
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Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2000 1:25 am

RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 3:19 am

Jim-

That's one observation with which I must respectfully disagree. While jetBlue and AirTran will indeed offer many connecting pair opportunities by starting service with fewer flights, nothing really precludes Southwest from entering any city served by jetBlue or AirTran (slot limitations aside) if they view it as a sufficiently attractive market opportunity. BUF, for example, was already served by jetBlue, Vanguard and AirTran when Southwest chose to begin service there in 2000. And when they do choose to enter a city served by other low-fare carriers, their more efficient resource utilization helps them compete more effectively.

I'm of the opinion that Southwest still has at least 30 or so cities/airports it could add without having to offer fewer than 10 daily flights -- and this excludes network carrier hubs or congested airports like LGA, DCA, or BOS.
 
Greg
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RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 3:41 am

If Airtran and JetBlue don't watch their spending soon...they won't have to worry about the 'next decade'!

WN is still the financial barometer on how a carrier should be leveraged.
 
FATFlyer
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Joined: Fri May 18, 2001 4:12 am

RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 10:30 am

There was an article a couple of years ago (2001) that spoke about WN's schedule planning department that mentioned the criteria included:
the airport's location and its terminal layout
the demographics of the city and region
the proximity of the airport's runways and taxiways to its terminals
the friendliness of the airport's administrative staff.

It also said they relied on market research, gut instinct and plenty of common
sense.

There was one quote that was interesting:
"We try to immerse ourselves in studying markets from the standpoint of the
customer," he said. "We spend time observing many things within a city and
try to develop a feel for what's going on, and try to ascertain what would
be important to us if we lived and worked there with different
perspectives."

"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain
 
DCA-ROCguy
Posts: 3890
Joined: Fri Apr 21, 2000 5:03 am

RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 1:36 pm

If Airtran and JetBlue don't watch their spending soon...they won't have to worry about the 'next decade'! WN is still the financial barometer on how a carrier should be leveraged.

That's a very fair point. However, with an industry restructuring going on, the opportunities are very good for carriers with good management, good product, and low cost structure. What I've read in Aviation Week and Washington Post indicates that Wall Street doesn't think the LCC's are leveraging themselves beyond capitalization, though. In these bearish times, that judgment probably doesn't reflect overenthusiasm, either.

Not that the LCC's couldn't go overboard, and they indeed should keep expansion within capitalization in order not to overextend themselves. I just think--and that's admittedly an observer's judgment--that WN could probably figure out how to drop their starting minimum to 5-7 dailies and still keep 7.4 cents or close to it.

Scott, I'd *love* to think there are 30+ more airports where WN could enter with 10+ dailies. I really hope you're right. I wasn't saying that WN *can't* enter a market where other LCC's are present, sorry if I wasn't clear. I still think they could enter any number of .8 million--1.5 million person metro areas (and of course larger areas) with 10 dailies. But they do limit themselves, and might make it tougher to compete.

In any event, God speed to LCC's.

Jim
Need a new airline paint scheme? Better call Saul! (Bass that is)
 
Chi-town
Posts: 893
Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2000 1:29 am

RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 1:41 pm

Does anyone have a guess as to what their new desintations will be in the future??
 
LambertMan
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Joined: Tue Aug 19, 2003 1:26 pm

RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 1:48 pm

Fresno, California has been speculated along with ICT. I am not certain ICT could support the 10 dailies however, MDW is covered by FL. Maybe some to BNA, PHX, ABQ, HOU, or DAL.
 
WNfan
Posts: 198
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 4:27 am

RE: WN's Criteria For New Markets?

Wed Aug 20, 2003 2:17 pm

FL no longer serves MDW-ICT. They have ATL-ICT only now.

Does anyone else think WN at ICT would work? I like the destinations that LambertMan posted, along with the one obligatory daily to LAS.

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