kevin
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Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 5:50 am

Virgin is in talks with Philadelphia and Pennsylvania officials about locating the headquarters for a new low-cost airline in the city.
The company, to be called Virgin USA, would operate flights from the Philadelphia Int'l Airport.

Way to go Virgin!
 
gigneil
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 5:52 am

Heh, sorry buddy, but in talks doesn't mean it will be so.

With WN's recent announcement of low fare service at PHL, VSUSA will have trouble.

N
 
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Aloha717200
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 5:56 am

Kiss 'em goodbye. If they are based in Philly, WN will kill Virgin USA off.

They're better off finding a market with good O&D traffic, where an established LCC has NOT entered on a big scale,
 
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Aloha717200
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 5:57 am

P.S. Virgin America is a better name I think.
 
potomac
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 6:01 am

yeah, i'd suggest renaming the topic, because it hasn't been decided yet. virgin america/virgin usa is looking at 5 or 6 potential sites for both a airline hub and site for corporate HQ. they are PHL, IAD, JFK, BOS, and either LAX or SFO.

 
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Aloha717200
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 6:17 am

PHL, IAD, JFK, BOS, and either LAX or SFO

All of which are Cactus-related.  Laugh out loud

No, seriously, I'd say their best bet is either BOS or SFO. IAD would be good if they decided to purchase ACA and use their existing infrastructure to start the airline. Otherwise, you'll have two upstarts at IAD both trying to make a foothold, and both might eventually die as a result.

JFK has jetblue, Branson might as well forget that one. PHL has WN. Not yet fully established, but once WN gets going with it's PHL service, it'll be hard to compete with. LAX is serviced by a myriad of LCCs, even if none of them are actually based there. SFO has LCC service as well, but, the situation is not the same as LAX and I imagine SFO would be a better location to attempt starting.

I'd lay my money on BOS though.
 
Coronado990
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 6:21 am

Kiss 'em goodbye. If they are based in Philly, WN will kill Virgin USA off.

Why can't an LCC base it's operation where it can get the best deal. I do not think they want to start a super hub at PHL. A focus city, perhaps.

WN is based at DAL and not every Southwest flight passes through there (for obvious reasons).

Another example would be AirTran based at Orlando. An important focus city for them but not their primary hub.
Uncle SAN at your service!
 
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Aloha717200
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 6:30 am

WN hasn't even truly established it's service to PHL yet as far as I know, but, once they do, they'll be fairly difficult to compete with.

If Virgin USA is planning to establish itself in a city, typically that city will be the most important in the network. Unless Virgin USA plans to be more of a point-to-point airline, in which case much of it's route network will have flights that bypass PHL altogether. But if they're planning on hubbing out of their base of operations, then they have to seriously consider the competition. WN will be a worthy adversary. And it's got brand recognition. Here in the USA, SRB's product is not known as well as he probably thinks it is.

I wish him the best of luck. Which is why I hope he doesn't start the airline in PHL, LAX, or IAD.
 
Midway2AirTran
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 6:33 am

I think Virgin America could do well in PHL, even with WN. The one hurting in that case would be US. Guess we will see where Virgin America really goes.
"Life is short, but your delay in ATL is not."
 
usairways85
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 6:40 am

I think they want the airline up and running within a year or so. Well gates at BOS will not even be available for at least another 2 years, not only that but BOS is seeing more and more LCC's now too, with Airtran and now Jetblue.

I dont think IAD would be that bad, JFK has jetblue, PHL i dont think WN will cause much of a problem with only 14 flts to start. LAX has a ton of LCC's, and SFO though not as many LCC's still has a frequent problem with delays. MCO just doesn't cut it for a type of operation like this.
 
potomac
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 6:41 am

i think BOS is unappealing bcs it offers limited connection opportunities (i'm not talking about connecting to virgin atlantic flights either). plus, it is delay prone with a miserable runway configuration, and facilities are limited.

i dont think branson is afraid of running up against an existing LCC, but i think he'd rather do it against an unproven ACA/independence in IAD vs. JetBlue at JFK. and PHL seems unappealing not so much due to WN (though on their own i dont think they'd be much of a deterrant), but also bcs PHL is up there as being delay prone too.

i dont think LAX and SFO are serious contenders, as much as they were just being considered if a west coast based LCC ended up being the choice, which i dont think it will be.

just my thoughts of course...
 
Coronado990
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 6:41 am

Virgin has name recognition in California, Vegas, Florida, New York, Boston and Washington DC. Not a bad place to start.
Uncle SAN at your service!
 
USAFHummer
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 6:42 am

Somehow I think while maybe their corporate HQ could be here in Philly, I doubt PHL will be their main hub...reason being VS doesnt serve PHL, and I would think that Virgin USA would want some feeder traffic from regular VS flights...maybe VS to PHL is in the cards????

Greg
Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
 
potomac
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 6:46 am

on that note, i do know that virgin usa is evaluating cities both as potential hubs and sites for corporate HQ. if you add those considerations - office/facility space, proximity to airport, cost and quality of living for employees, tax incentives, etc., it paints a different picture of the cities under consideration.
 
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STT757
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 6:49 am

"If Virgin USA is planning to establish itself in a city, typically that city will be the most important in the network."

I agree with USAFHummer, just because they might make Philadelphia their Corporate headquarters does not mean they will make PHL their base of operations.

US Airways is based in Arlington Virginia, Airtran is based out of Orlando even though their largest hub is ATL etc..

Where a Company's Corporate Headquarters is located has more to do with friendly business enviroment than operations, although that does play it the process.

I think PHL is very likely the focus of Virgin America, which might be one of the reasons WN decided to make the first move.
Eastern Air lines flt # 701, EWR-MCO Boeing 757
 
gigneil
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 7:18 am

Virgin Atlantic feeding the hub will be of less importance than you think.

US law will still apply - the code-sharing and feeding will require approval since one will be a domestic carrier and the other international.

N
 
srbmod
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 7:19 am

US Airways' HQ at Crystal City is very close to DCA, which is US Airways most important non-hub city.

The rumors have been out there about AirTran returning to ATL as its' HQ. Supposedly, the reason why the merged companies kept MCO as the HQ is that it was cheaper to keep MCO as the HQ than it would be to get out of the building leases that AirTran had at MCO at the time of the merger. And Valujet had a smaller number of employees that would have to be transferred when compared to the amount of staff they would have needed to transfer to ATL if it were to be the HQ.

As for Virgin USA, they will definitely hub out of an current VS city; the US offices of Virgin Atlantic are in Norwalk, CT. Supposedly, Virgin USA has set up offices in NYC for the time being; I still think that Virgin USA and Virgin Atlantic will share the same office buildings up in Norwalk.
 
behramjee
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 7:21 am

BOS and OAK are better choices!!!
 
gigneil
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 7:22 am

Neither BOS nor OAK are good choices. BOS as has been mentioned is exceptionally delay prone and offers zero US connecting opportunities.

OAK is a Southwest city and a jetBlue city, also with limited domestic connecting opportunities except up and down the heavily competitive west coast.

N
 
as739x
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 9:39 am

Oakland has no room what so ever Behramjee. Airlines are battling it out in OAK for gates and the airport is currently 7 million pax/per year over capacity. Not a chance!
ASSFO
"Some pilots avoid storm cells and some play connect the dots!"
 
copaair737
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 10:18 am

If they started with a B6 type scheme, they could have two hubs, one on the west coast, and one on the east coast. BOS could be the east coast hub, and SFO could be the west coast hub. With the reopening of terminal 2 in SFO, there will be a few more gates open to work with.
Livin' on Reds, Vitamin C, and Cocaine
 
as739x
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 10:32 am

Unfortunatly for SFO, the high cost of living and high landing fee's and rent cost may kill any chance of SFO. SFO has the second highest fee's in the nation from my understanding (someone correct me if I'm wrong). The rent here is unreal. Copa, I have learned more that AA want the whole T2 for themselves, all 13 gates. Now I'm sure the airport will have some say in that. Would be nice to have Virgin USA here, but time can only tell.
ASSFO
"Some pilots avoid storm cells and some play connect the dots!"
 
usairways85
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 10:33 am

i can tell you it is highly unlikely BOS will be a hub. Gates will not be open for another 2 years, and i doubt Branson wants to open the airline that far away. Not only that but BOS is horrible for connections, delay prone, and already has Airtran and JetBlue.

As for VS in PHL, it has been rumored for a while that VS has expressed interest in PHL. I know it deviates from their typical lesuire or Big business markets such as LAX and NYC, but it could be a possibility
 
Philaboy
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 10:39 am

As a Philadelphia resident, of course I am thrilled about Virgin's possibilty of coming to PHL, however, I do think that it is a good location when it comes to geography with major cities in the Northeast. another possibility Virgin could consider is PIT. I know the city iteself isn't doing so well, and USAirways threatening to stop PIT as a hub might open a door for Virgin.
Anything's possible.
 
copaair737
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 10:50 am

AS739X- Will AA expand SFO with more flights intenationally or more domestic service?
Livin' on Reds, Vitamin C, and Cocaine
 
A330323X
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 12:38 pm

Does Bermuda II let VS fly LHR-PHL? My memory is kinda rusty, but I seem to think that there's some number of pax required if two carriers from the same country want to fly to LHR, and that PHL doesn't meet that requirement. Anybody know what I'm talking about?
I'm the expert on here on two things, neither of which I care about much anymore.
 
gigneil
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 12:43 pm

I'm pretty sure PHL is an LHR city and therefore VS can fly there if they want.

N
 
747firstclass
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 12:45 pm

A330323X, Bermuda II does allow for direct flights PHL-LHR for US carriers. In times past both TW and AA flew that route.
However, the catch is that the airlines flying that route has to be a carrier with access to LHR, which TW had and AA has. AA dropped the route. US took it over, but as they dont have rights to LHR, they are forced to fly PHL-LGW.
 
A330323X
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 12:51 pm

I realize that PHL is a LHR city. BA flies a 747 and a 777 daily PHL-LHR. My question is whether BA and VS are both allowed to serve PHL-LHR at the same time.
I'm the expert on here on two things, neither of which I care about much anymore.
 
USAFHummer
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 12:53 pm

BA currently flies twice daily PHL-LHR-PHL with a 744 and 772...VS to PHL is one of the most often mentioned rumors regarding new intl service at PHL...Im keeping my fingers crossed...

Greg
Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
 
AA777MIA
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 12:58 pm

Did AA fly PHL to LHR or PHL to LGW at that time...???
 
goboeing
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 1:00 pm

Is there enough demand to fly 4-5 flights a day from PHL to London? BA has 2, US sometimes has 2, and another seems like it would be too much.

Nick
 
usair330
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 1:00 pm

Virgin @ PHL!!!! Big grin Can't wait to see those 747's or A340's flying over the city!
 
USAFHummer
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 1:14 pm

Its still just a rumor USAir330, and has been as long as Ive been on a.net...dont get excited yet...

Greg
Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
 
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Aloha717200
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 1:17 pm

What is Bermuda II?

filler
filler
filler (this is ridiculous)
 
jcooke
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 1:22 pm

Is there enough demand to fly 4-5 flights a day from PHL to London? BA has 2, US sometimes has 2, and another seems like it would be too much.

US typically has one flight PHL-LGW (US126)
BA typically has two flights PHL-LHR (BA66, BA68)

I'm not sure of the other carriers at PHL and their frequencies for PHL-LON.

-Jcooke
 
ckfred
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 1:32 pm

What would be interesting is if Virgin were to go to ORD. VS used to fly ORD-LHR until 9/11.

ORD would love to get a LCC into ORD, but JetBlue is balking due to the number of gates that it wants not being available.

The Dept. of Aviation has been trying to get some UA gates released, since UA mainline is down a lot.

It would make sense for Virgin America to start out of ORD while VS resumes ORD-LHR.
 
usairways85
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 1:35 pm

The only two carriers flying PHL-LON are US and BA

US has a daily 333 and a seasonal second daily flight with a 762
BA has two daily flights, a 744 and 772.

If VS were to add PHL they would only be adding a 4th PHL-LON flight for 3/4 of the year and a 5th PHL-LON flight for about 1/4 of the year

Yes this is just a rumor that has been floating around, i wouldn't get excited at all. It may in fact never happen
 
nwa330tony
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Thu Nov 20, 2003 1:57 pm

I Have to agree with philaboy I think PIT would be a better spot then PHL and right now the area could sure use the good news so they can tell USAirways to get lost already. (nothing personnal against usairways just all threats to leave are getting annoying) Hopefully this will be something Penn. officials can try to sell them when they meet.
also it would be great to see some
PIT-LON
PIT-LHR
OR EVEN
PIT-LGW
 
BN747
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RE: MEXICANA'S Latest News

Thu Nov 20, 2003 2:39 pm

What a bloodbath this is shaping up to be??? And on so many levels!
It really is shaping up as a notorious philly street fight!
WN moves in on US's turf..followed by VS USA.
ACA goes big jets at IAD....christ!
Well the real action will be at Philly....what will US do?
They'd better get ready to put the 'smackdown' on somebody...cuz one BA didn't think VS could pull it off...and look at where they are today? Constantly looking over their shoulders and sleeping with one eye open because of VS.
WN, when they show up...they ain't leaving! If VS does select Philly...I'd love to be a fly on the wall in the Crystal City boardroom when that annoucement comes out! A 3-way battle...boy..it won't be pretty..but it will be cheap gettin' in and outta Philly.


BN747

Not betting against Branson. uh uh, nada, no way!
"Home of the Brave, made by the Slaves..Land of the Free, if you look like me.." T. Jefferson
 
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legacyins
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Fri Nov 21, 2003 1:53 pm

Virgin USA representatives will be in San Francisco on Monday to hear a sales pitch from the local business community. Our new Governor Arny already has made a few calls to the Virgin USA team to tell them about how great it would be for them to locate in California. This is also word of a few tax breaks and landing fee/terminal fee reductions at SFO to encourage them.
 
copaair737
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Fri Nov 21, 2003 2:41 pm

Well, I think that SFO would be a great place for Virgin USA to hub at, but thats just me.
Livin' on Reds, Vitamin C, and Cocaine
 
LHR001
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Sun Nov 23, 2003 2:24 pm

Reality Check-

PHL... NO

Los Angeles... Definitely A Choice
San Francisco... Definitely A Choice

In the scheme of Richard Branson.. San Francisco and Los Angeles would seem as much more viable candidate. Virgin is a brand that is associated with major cities... Cities that prove lucrative for business and high end leisure markets.

Examples-

Boston
Las Vegas
Los Angeles
Miami
New York
Orlando
San Francisco


PHL would have problems sustaining a major player such as Virgin Atlantic on a daily basis to London! How are they going to support a whole team of flights?

Example-

SFO to LHR

British Airways
2 X 747-400
United Airlines
1 x 777-200
1 x 747-400
Virgin Atlantic
1 x 747-400 or A340

In Addition San Francisco also offers the following-

Aeroflot
Air China
Air France
ANA
Asiana
Cathay Pacific
China Airlines
EVA Air
Japan Air Lines
KLM
Korean Airlines
Lufthansa
Mexicana
Philippine Airlines
Singapore Airlines
TACA

LAX to LHR

Air New Zealand
1 x 747-400
American Airlines
1 x 777-200
British Airways
3 x 747-400
United Airlines
1 x 777-200
Virgin Atlantic
1 x 747-400
1 x A340

In Addition Los Angeles Offers the Following-

Aeroflot
Aero Mexico
Air China
Air France
Air Jamaica
Air Pacific
Air Tahiti Nui
ANA
Asiana
Cathay Pacific
China Airlines
China Eastern
China Southern
Copa
EL AL
EVA Air
Japan Air Lines
KLM
Korean Airlines
Lan Chile
Lufthansa
Malaysia Airlines
Mexicana
Philippine Airlines
Qantas
Singapore Airlines
Swiss International Airlines
TACA
Thai Airways
Varig


You see, most of this is leading to one very prominent and quick resolution. Los Angeles and San Francisco are just ripe for the picking. The International traffic that is fed into the two cities is nearly 10 x as much as PHL! Virgin needs a glamorous (It was an airline based on luxury, and price)..yet economic base... San Francisco and Los Angeles... anyday over PHL!


LHR001
 
copaair737
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Sun Nov 23, 2003 2:36 pm

If it is between SFO and LAX, i see SFO getting it, because of more availible gates compared to LAX
Livin' on Reds, Vitamin C, and Cocaine
 
usairways85
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Sun Nov 23, 2003 2:47 pm

ok first, what does the amount of international carriers have to do with the hub Branson picks. The airline cannot be solely based on connecting paxs on VS flights from London to US cities, it just wont work because basically every major city in the US already has service from LHR or LGW.

Next how can LAX be that good of a choice when Alaska and Southwest already have a fairly large presence. Not to mention, America West, Frontier, and ATA all have a good number of flights as well....looks like a lot of competition to me.

Now SFO...America West, Alaska, ATA(and growing), and Frontier all have a decent number of flights as well as the lone Air Tran flight. Looks like a lot of low-fare competition as well. Also if Southwest couldn't make SFO work as a large station then how do you expect Virgin USA to make SFO work as a hub.
 
gigneil
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Sun Nov 23, 2003 3:17 pm

PHL would have problems sustaining a major player such as Virgin Atlantic on a daily basis to London! How are they going to support a whole team of flights


Virgin Atlantic and Virgin USA have nothing to do with each other. PHL can obviously support another low fare domestic carrier being the 5th largest metro in the US.

As was already discussed, BA manages to sustain a daily 744 and 772 and US a daily 333 and seasonally a 762. Sounds like a major player does fine internationally, eh?

SFO is a fine choice, except for delays and space problems.

LAX is a horrible place to base an LCC unless you are banking on only LA's O/D. Alaska and others do well because they have an established network of additional focus cities.

he International traffic that is fed into the two cities is nearly 10 x as much as PHL! Virgin needs a glamorous (It was an airline based on luxury, and price)

I don't understand what international traffic has to do with a domestic low-fare carrier. Can you explain?

I want to reiterate - Virgin USA and Virgin Atlantic will not be able to just hook up and cooperate. US law will restrict it heavily.

N
 
LHR001
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Mon Nov 24, 2003 12:57 am

Gigneil,


First it is important to stress one thing. The international traffic that is fed into SFO and LAX is more than 10 x that of PHL. It is good to base a LCC in a major city, the second key is the traffic base. You cannot solely base your decision on a cities size. You must evaluate the traffic base.

Is the traffic for PHL larger than SFO... NO!

Is the traffic for PHL larger than LAX... NO!

In addition the internatinal traffic that is fed into the West Coast is much more lucrative than that of the international traffic at PHL! PHL, may prove well for WN... The probem is that Virgin by reviewing past bases has included Brussels, and Sydney. You can hardly say the PHL is on a par with Brussels and Sydney... let alone San Francisco and Los Angeles!

Finally, the delays at SFO are nothing in comparisson to that of PHL. It is true that SFO has issues when it comes to fog and rain... In reference to that PHL has 4 months out of the year when it is bogged down or completely closed due to snow and adverse East Coast weather conditions!

USAirways85,

The San Francsico and Los Angeles O/D base is much larger than PHL! In addition the international traffic that is fed into these two cities is outstanding! When you look at SFO... You have UAL, who have chosen SFO as their largest international traffic base.

SFO-PVG
SFO-SEL
SFO-NRT
SFO-KIX
SFO-TPE
SFO-HKG
SFO-SYD
SFO-YVR
SFO-YYZ
SFO-LHR
SFO-CDG
SFO-FRA
SFO-MEX

In addition to that you have the following routes flown by other airlines as well! Dont forget that Aer Lingus, Alitalia, Emirates, Gulf Air, Malaysia Airlines, Orient Thai, Thai Airways are all interested in the San Francisco market!

SFO-LHR
SFO-CDG
SFO-AMS
SFO-FRA
SFO-SVO
SFO-MEX
SFO-GDL
SFO-MLM
SFO-CUN
SFO-MZT
SFO-SJD
SFO-SJO
SFO-PEK
SFO-NRT
SFO-KIX
SFO-SEL
SFO-TPE
SFO-HKG
SFO-MNL

SFO-DXB 2004
SFO-SIN 2005

As you can see SFO, has far superior International feed than PHL!

In reference to your comment in regards to WN pulling out of SFO! WN, only operated a handful of flights from SFO. The airline at the same time was building up SJC, and OAK. You cannot base Virgin Americas decision solely on WN and they way in which they pulled out of SFO.

TZ has been very lucrative at SFO. Their destinations now include-

SFO-CUN
SFO-HNL
SFO-OGG
SFO-EWR
SFO-MDW
SFO-IND
SFO-TPA (St. Petersburg)

F9 has been adding flights into its SFO market. They have more flights than ever to DEN!

HP has built up SFO and is now offering the following flights-

SFO-PHX
SFO-LAS
SFO-JFK
SFO-BOS

The list goes on and on.... We shall see very soon... Which city is chosen and why!



Regards,



LHR001
 
sebwhite
Posts: 390
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Mon Nov 24, 2003 1:04 am

Don't forget SFO-YUL and SFO-YYC.
 
LHR001
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RE: Virgin USA To Be Based In Philly

Mon Nov 24, 2003 1:10 am

Sebwhite,

Thank you for the additional flights.

The Air Canada operation at SFO is very nice in reference to their on-going association with Star Alliance.

And also I have omitted-

SFO-MUC flown by LH

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