lgbguy
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What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 12:15 am

It has been discussed, or rumored, of a buyout or merger between WN and AQ. So what is your opinion of the positives and negatives of such a move, IF it were to ever happen.

WW for the LBGGUY
 
jeffrey1970
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 12:24 am

I am not sure it would be wise because Hawaii is more of a vacation destination then a place where business travelers go, from my point of view. Also, it seems that business travel is the main reason why airlines expand in most areas, so I am not sure that Southwest would really be interested in Hawaii right now. Although I could be wrong. Plus, it seems that when airlines buy each other out, that only spells trouble for the airline that does the buying because of all the debt they take on.

God bless through Jesus,

Jeff
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LMP737
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 12:25 am

On the plus side, both airlines operate 737's which means pilot and maintenance training would not be much of an issue. On the negative you have two different corporate cultures along with then inevitable animosity between the employees. My opinion, bad idea.
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CanadianNorth
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 12:30 am

look at all the stuff happening to Air Canada since the Canadi>n merger eh...


CanadianNorth
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jeffrey1970
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 12:32 am

Also don't forget Aloha Airlines is a full service airline, especially on there longer routes. So if Southwest bought them, they would have to decide if they should kept those flights at full service.
God bless through Jesus, Jeff
 
Greg
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 1:52 am

There are no pluses.
WN does not need AQ.
 
Bluewave 707
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying A

Tue Dec 02, 2003 2:01 am

WN would be going against it's own business philosophy by buying AQ. I'm sure that Herb Kelleher will not approve of this move, even if he is retired.
"The best use of your life will be to so live your life, that the use of your life will outlive your life" -- D Severn
 
luv2fly
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 2:02 am

Absolutely no reason for it. If they really wanted to fly to Hawaii they would have by now, and do not need to buy out another airline to do so.
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SWAFA30
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 3:06 am

Interesting topic. This rumor has been rattling around the "office" at work for months now.

On the surface there are several pluses and minuses to the deal. From some standpoints it could be an easy transition from others it could turn into a complete nightmare. Their current destinations in the lower 48(BUR, LAS, OAK, SNA, PHX, RNO, SMF) are a perfect match to SWA simply because we already serve these cities making it easy to feed traffic from the rest of the system to Hawaii. They are a relatively small carrier which could make assimilating their fleet into SWA's easier. Assuming SWA decided to do away with AQ's first class service, it would not be an enourmous undertaking to retrofit AQ's 10 -700s to the SWA livery and interior layout. A quick solution would be to simply slap SWA paint on them and leave the interior unchanged until we could get the interior overhauls done. SWA has done this in the past when aircraft were purchased from other carriers such as West Pac and BWIA. I don't know what SWA would do with AQ's -200 fleet. Perhaps some of the older -300s in the current SWA system could be moved to Hawaii for interisland routes as the AQ -200s are retired and -700s come on line for operation stateside. SWA does have a year or two of experience operating short haul, high frequency routes.

It is my understanding that when SWA purchased Morris Air, the Morris pilot group came along with the deal and grounds ops and inflight personnel had to re-interview and be hired by SWA if they wished to keep their position. Perhaps someone more familiar with that acquisition could shed some light. In any case that might be a way to handle absorbing the AQ employee group. According to Aloha's website they employed, 3,459 employees as of 7/31/03. That is well under 10% of SWA's current workforce. Much of SWA ground ops is overstaffed and could easily step in if SWA elected not to "retain" any AQ staff. How about the 1,900 res agents who were told last month to either move or hit the bricks? I don't think it would take much arm twisting to fill ground ops position in Hawaii with internal transfers.


Why Hawaii? If you ask people what their main complaint is about SWA's frequent flier program they will almost always say...."Southwest does not go anywhere I would want to use my free ticket to visit!" You add a real vacation destination to the route system and suddenly SWA has a little more to offer the road warrior. If SWA stuck to their policy of allowing award ticket holders to fly anywhere in the system, regardless of where they earned their "miles" they just might strike frequent flier gold. Imagine you can earn a free ticket by making 8 round trips from Dallas to Houston buying your tickets online for under 100 bucks round trip. If you are a frequent business traveler and you manage to rack up 4 or 5 award tickets per year...before you know it....you've got free tickets for the whole family to Hawaii. Not too shabby. The only catch is......how do you make money on the Hawaii routes if the planes are full of freebie tickets? Or do you limit the number of RapidReward seats on each HNL flight and risk angering your valuable frequent fliers??

Another plus to the AQ acquisition would be access to Canada since AQ serves Vancouver. Not really sure what would happen with AQ's Central/South Pacific Destinations. Any thoughts?

Now of course all of this is moot if you take WN management at their word. When questioned about this topic senior management have been quoted as saying..."After Morris Air, SWA is out of the airline buying business....when you buy another carrier, you are buying all of their problems as well." But the same management team has also never been one to pass up a bargain when one comes along. If AQ went on the market, the price was right and they thought they could make the logistics work, I think they just might give it a go. Perhaps the PHL announcement is proof that SWA management is thinking a bit outside of the Canyon Blue box.
 
jeffrey1970
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 3:25 am

SWAFA30,

You make some very good points. However would it be worth spending the the millions to buy Aloha just to add it as a vacation destination? If Southwest wanted to do that, why not just start flights to Hawaii with there own airplanes?

God bless through Jesus,

Jeff
God bless through Jesus, Jeff
 
SWAFA30
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 3:48 am

You make some very good points. However would it be worth spending the the millions to buy Aloha just to add it as a vacation destination? If Southwest wanted to do that, why not just start flights to Hawaii with there own airplanes?

In my opinion, an AQ acquisition would only happen if Hawaii were already on the proverbial "list" of cities that would eventually receive Southwest service. The benefit of acquiring AQ vs. simply establishing the routes on our is own is that in essence AQ has done much of the work for WN. They have already secured and established the routes and infrastructure up to and including everything from gate space to ground equipment. Also with AQ, WN would instantly get over water equipped aircraft and the pilots and flight attendants who are trained to fly/work them. Getting WN's current fleet and crews up to speed for overwater flights could take months if not years. AQ's fleet size is so small in comparison to SWA (24 vs. 400+/-), WN would essentially be purchasing Hawaiian routes with a few airplanes thrown in as parting gifts. Again, for any of this to even enter the realm of possibility, Hawaii would have to have been on the radar anyway and this would simply be seen as an "easy" way to get there. If that were the case, WN might just dip into the $2 Billion till if the expenditure were viewed as an investment in the future of the company as opposed to just a vanity purchase. Of course, I still think it is next to impossible but I guess we will just have to wait and see.
 
jeffrey1970
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 3:56 am

SWAFA30,

Once again you make some very good points. I guess we will just have to waite and see.
God bless through Jesus, Jeff
 
SHUPirate1
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 3:57 am

Before you bash Hawaii as a market, keep in mind that the single largest O&D market (calculated airport-airport, and it's not even close) in the United States is Honolulu-Maui...
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lgbguy
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 4:48 am

Well since I started this thread I might as well give my opinion.

I think that HNL is on LUV's radar, how far down the list I am not sure. But LUV is begining to get equipment for overwater flights. They have already recieved liferafts. The winglets allow for about 115 more nautical miles. They are in talks with Boeing for engine ratings increase, for better performance, again allow for longer flights. (someone in MX please verify as I have only heard this and do not have first hand knowledge)

Another thing is the Philly suprise. If they go there they may go anywhere at this point. J6 is also looking at service to HNL.

If LUV does buy AQ it would be a stock deal and NOT cash. The -500 fleet could be moved to serve intra-island flights. Better yet if LUV is looking at the Embreaer what better place to put them than in the islands. With the purchase you are right...everything is in place for the service.

And the only other thing I can think of at the moment is that they have several former LUV employees in high positions, such as scheduling planning and marketing.

The only problem I think LUV has is what to do with FREE tickets. (rapid rewards). My idea on that is it takes 32 oneways for a HNL ticket, no capacity controls.

WW again for LGBGUY
 
ssides
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 5:26 am

I just can't see it. I know WN is tweaking its ops a bit, trying to stay ahead of the curve -- look at PHL and the winglet issue, but I think HNL just wouldn't bring in the money to make it justifiable.

First, WN is successful because of its appeal to the business traveler. Hardly anyone goes to HNL on business. Strike one against WN's format.

Second, WN has a simple and easy FF system. If it served HNL, it would either be offering a TON of free tickets to HNL or make an exception for HNL flights. Either one would be harmful, in my opinion. There is absolutely no way they could fly to HNL under the current FF system. Everyone and their dog who makes 4 round-trips booked online would be gobbling up seats to HNL. Without capacity controls, I bet at least half, if not more, of the seats on HNL flights would be free tickets. On the other hand, they would probably upset some customers if they increased the requirements solely for HNL flights. That's the biggest advantage of Rapid Rewards, in my opinion -- I can fly anywhere for the same number of points, no capacity controls. I don' think it would be advantageous to make that change.

Bottom line, HNL is not that profitable a market for any carrier. It's a long flight, with demanding yet low-paying customers. I just can't see WN entering the market, it's just too big of a risk.
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elwood64151
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 5:38 am

IMHO, if WN were to expand to Hawaii, they'd do it organically, adding service from LAX, SAN, and SFO to HNL. I don't think they'd buy a Hawaiian regional and be forced to operate those routes, also.

What about gate space at HNL? Does anyone know if there is space available? I seem to recall someone telling me that gate space there is first-come first-served, and that there are no assigned gates. You just have to have a slot for the time period your aircraft is using that gate. Is that correct?

Cheers!
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SRD737NG
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 5:42 am

SWAFA30 :

You make very good points in your above posts. I have been hearing this rumor growing rapidly from airline friends all over the country at different companies over the last few weeks. I was wondering how long it would take to show up on this forum.

To add to what you have already said, I can see why it would be a plus in some ways for WN to purchase AQ. For those who don't know, AQ has been for sale for a few years now. AQ is doing VERY well on their -700 trans-pac service, load wise and profit wise. SNA is making the most, and AQ has been trying to score more slots out of this airport, as well as OAK. We all know that slots at SNA are at a premium....so for WN, it would be a plus to acquire these slots, as it could be tough to get as many as they would want on their own.

Jeffrey1970 made the argument "why doesn't WN just do it themselves?" Other than the slot issue, it takes a lot of time and money to obtain a 737 ETOPS certificate, not to mention the airplanes all have to be specially equipped for ETOPS flying. Crews would have to be trained for ETOPS flying too, although that wouldn't be that long and difficult. They would also have to set up shop from scratch in HNL, OGG, KOA, and possibly LIH. With AQ they would already have all of this in place.

Drawbacks: I don't know how WN would tackle the inter-island market. It would never work on their own, if they were to do this, they would have to buy AQ. I just don't see why WN would want to be involved with a deteriorating inter-island market anyway. For years both AQ and HAL have lost money with this. It is the long haul that is making the money for AQ, not inter island flying. I wonder if WN would just turn over all of the inter island market to Island Air and run an RJ or Dash 8Q400 or something on that as a separate company as a WN codeshare?

I know pilots and F/A's at both companies. I get different opinions from each group. Many WN people I've talked to would love to move to Hawaii and fly day trips. Guys at AQ are worried that they may lose their easy lifestyle to a more senior WN employee and bump them to OAK or BWI. AQ crewmembers inter island can be home every night and only work around 13 days a month....very appealing to the family man/woman. Overwater crews (pilots) only fly around 10 days a month (if you count the day off in the middle of the 3 day trips, 15 days if you don't), and have an 80 hour guarantee to actually fly about 65-71 hours a month. To make it simple, WN employees work a lot more than AQ employees.

WN however, well it's obvious. VERY STABLE company with good pay. I think that many AQ employees would be all for it for that reason alone.

Why would WN want to get involved with Hawaii? Hawaii tourism is up, up, up. More and more people are traveling to the islands now a days for vacation for reasons we all know. ATA is a LCC that has jumped on the Hawaii market, and they are doing well with it. Rumors are is that JetBlue has been eyeing service from the west coast as well. Why not WN get the jump on them and get it going now? I think it would be a wise move for them, bringing on AQ would only speed things up and help it along. Sorry for the novel...........
 
luv2fly
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 5:42 am

You might be reading more into the life rafts than they really are? It very well could be for the Eastern Seaboard flights so they do not have to hug the coast and get some better routings, so they can get in and get out again. Also flights from the West coast to Florida, again just shoot across the Gulf of Mexico and once again quicker route.
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SWAFA30
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 7:18 am

First, WN is successful because of its appeal to the business traveler. Hardly anyone goes to HNL on business. Strike one against WN's format.

Southwest success lies in its appeal to both the business and leisure traveler treating both groups as equally important. I think the appeal of WN service to HNL for the business traveler is not when said business traveler travel on business but rather when he/she travels for pleasure.

Second, WN has a simple and easy FF system. If it served HNL, it would either be offering a TON of free tickets to HNL or make an exception for HNL flights. Either one would be harmful, in my opinion. There is absolutely no way they could fly to HNL under the current FF system. Everyone and their dog who makes 4 round-trips booked online would be gobbling up seats to HNL. Without capacity controls, I bet at least half, if not more, of the seats on HNL flights would be free tickets. On the other hand, they would probably upset some customers if they increased the requirements solely for HNL flights. That's the biggest advantage of Rapid Rewards, in my opinion -- I can fly anywhere for the same number of points, no capacity controls. I don' think it would be advantageous to make that change.

The double credit bonus for booking online will end on 12/31/03. I think changing the requirements for RR redemption would compromise the integrity of the program. To really make use of HNL or OGG as a tool to encourage customer loyalty the customer has to know that when SWA says a RR ticket is good anywhere..they truly mean anywhere. This is where the Revenue and Yield management folks would really have to earn their pay. The big question is can WN put together the right mix of award ticket and revenue seats at varied price points to keep the flights profitable or at least breaking even.

Ssides' points do raise some valid questions.....

I did a quick Orbitz search for walk up fares from SFO/OAK to HNL economy class, one way, non-stop, departing tomorrow. ATA had the lowest fare at $400. Aloha was next at $434. Hawaiian was third at $545. UA, DL, and US all quoted about $740. What kind of fare structure would SWA have to implement on this route to make themselves attractive to the other major's customers and still keep this route profitable? Anyone know what the BELF is on SWA's transcons(BWI-LAX, SJC, SAN)? If it is the mid 60s to low 70s like I believe the rest of the system is...and we apply that to OAK-HNL, could you sell 30-40 FF seats on each flight and fill the rest with revenue customers and still make money? How is a RapidRewards passenger who travels BWI-SAN on an award ticket that she earned flying BWI-PVD round trips any different from a RapidRewards passenger flying OAK-HNL on a free ticket he earned flying LAX-SMF?

Interesting stuff indeed. Nice to be able to post on a WN thread that does not involve defending open seating or singing flight attendants.


 
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aloha73g
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 7:36 am

AQ is 'for sale' and has been for awhile. The two families that own most of it want to sale it before they end up with thousands of feuding relatives who can't decide what to do. My dad does business with one of the owners and was asked about buying a piece of AQ....too bad we don't have a few million lying around.  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

That said, I don't think the government of the State of Hawaii would be to excited about losing one our 'local' airlines. There is a big feeling among people in Hawaii that if either AQ or HA or both were merged into or bought by larger airlines (UA, AA, WN etc) that the interisland market would be ignored due to its low (nonexistant) profitability.

I don't necessarily agree with this action, but I think that if a major airline tried to buy AQ or HA the State of Hawaii would do ALOT to prevent it from happening. They have already suspended landing fees at HNL for HA and AQ many times to 'help them out' when times are tough. The fear of a lack of service on interisland routes is legitimate and I believe that AQ and HA are more likely to be willing to lose money on interisland flights than WN or another airline would be.

Aloha!
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ssides
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 7:45 am

SWAFA30 --

Do you know if they are planning on extending the double bonus credit? I know they've done it several times in the past (I remember flying WN in 2000 when the web site said the double bonus promotion would end 12/31/2000). It might have achieved its purpose now, though -- I hear that 60% of WN's tickets (or something like that) are bought online now.

Also, what about WN's policy of no one-way fare greater than $299? Either that or the Rapid Rewards policy would have to change, I would think.
"Lose" is not spelled with two o's!!!!
 
SWAFA30
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 8:00 am

SWAFA30 --

Do you know if they are planning on extending the double bonus credit? I know they've done it several times in the past (I remember flying WN in 2000 when the web site said the double bonus promotion would end 12/31/2000). It might have achieved its purpose now, though -- I hear that 60% of WN's tickets (or something like that) are bought online now.

Also, what about WN's policy of no one-way fare greater than $299? Either that or the Rapid Rewards policy would have to change, I would think.


Ssides,

I don't have any inside scoop on the double RR credits. I think the whole idea was indeed to encourage passengers to book online. Also it was a great way to lure people back to the skies post 9/11. Judging by the recent decision to shut down 3 reservations call centers I would say the idea worked. You may see the double credit come back from time to time...for instance I would expect some kind of promo for the PHL opening.

Right now, the $299 walk up is the LCC industry standard and SWA is hanging their hat on that figure. If Revenue Management could not make mainland to HNL service work for that price, perhaps they could keep it around for the rest of the system with an asteriks (sp?) for HNL. The only catch is that the traveling public hates asteriks. Nothing worse than a great offer with strings attached.

[Edited 2003-12-02 00:04:35]
 
ssides
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 8:07 am

You're exactly right, SWAFA30 --

Because I must fly long-haul from Dallas often, AA is my preferred carrier; I am a loyal AAdvantage member but I HATE the capacity controls when trying to book AAdvantage flights or upgrades. I am usually able to earn about 1 WN free flight per year, however, and I LOVE the fact that I can basically jump on any flight I want. It would greatly disappoint me if that changed.

From one perspective, though, I guess you could argue that nothing really changed -- if they did the asterisk thing for HNL or a RR restriction for HNL you could still fly to the same destinations as before for $299 or with your RR points. Nevertheless, I don't think it would go over well.
"Lose" is not spelled with two o's!!!!
 
lgbguy
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 8:53 am

RR credits for on-line booking will now earn 1 1/2 credit per one way. This was announced a few months back.

Back to the AQ/WN thing. IF it were to happen I would like to see WN keep the same great mainland-HNL service. The only change I would make is take out first class. Add a few more seats and another inch of leg room. They could probably configure with 125 instead of 137, typical WN configuration.

WW for LGBGUY
 
sprxflySWA
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 9:39 am

If we wanted to dabble with a Hawai'i experiment, I would suggest a foray into codesharing with Aloha. It would test the codeshare option,and not expend too much money by expanding there, or purchasing AQ outright. But, anyway, I hear COS will be the next location.  Smile Been hearing that for 9 years!
 
ha763
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 11:18 am

I doubt the State can do much to prevent another carrier from buying AQ or HA. There will be no anti-trust issues because there is a lot of competitors between the mainland and Hawaii (edit: this falls under interstate commerce and out of the State's jurisdiction). Plus, there would still be two major competitors flying interisland, also negating anti-trust issues. The reason there was much opposition to the HA-AQ merger is that it would have only left one major interisland carrier for the near future. The only thing the State can try to do is get the new owner to promise to maintain a certain level of interisland service.

As for gate space, HNL is tight around lunch time, but has lots of room in the morning and from mid afternoon on. Also, there is room for growth. There are existing plans for expanding the Diamond Head Concourse. Also the Ewa Concourse can also be expanded if needed. As for the neighbor islands, LIH and OGG are also very busy around lunch.

If WN were to take over AQ, they would need to find another aircraft type to replace the -200s. The CFM engines are not suited for the ultra-short interisland flights. This is what AQ found out when the had the -400 and still run into this problem when forced to fly the -700s interisland.

[Edited 2003-12-02 03:26:06]
 
sllevin
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying A

Tue Dec 02, 2003 12:59 pm

If WN were to take over AQ, they would need to find another aircraft type to replace the -200s

A look around MHV and other storage locations indicates that the best replacement for a -200 would be another -200 at this time  Smile No shortage of them!  Smile

Steve
 
StevenUhl777
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 1:06 pm

For what it's worth, I think an AS/AQ combination would make much more sense. I don't see UA or AA buying AQ anytime soon, given their current financial situations. The fact neither of them did so BEFORE the bad economy/9-11 tells me there was never any interest in doing so.

AS has a HUGE west coast presence, is growing east, and adding AQ to that mix would only benefit them. SEA-HNL/OGG/LIH on AS? It wouldn't surprise me if they look to start that anyway.
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aloha73g
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Tue Dec 02, 2003 1:36 pm

I also don't think the State of Hawaii could do much to stop a merger/buyout, but as long as AQ and HA are doing well I think the State (and its powerful Senator Inouye) would do a lot to try and prevent it. I also know for a fact that the owners of Aloha are looking to sell to someone from Hawaii, or a group from Hawaii. They don't seem interested in selling to another airline because they want to keep the local airlines local. Airlines in Hawaii are treated a little differently by the federal government. Hawaii was exempt from deregulation for a few years (until 80 or 81) and Sen. Inouye put an anti-trust exemption into post 9/11 legislation specifically to help AQ and HA.

I also don't think WN wants to come into the interisland market. The flights are so short that WN probably wouldn't make much a difference as far as prices/frequency. These are flights that would never be flown except that they are between islands. It would be like flying 20 roundtrips a day between SJC and OAK. Its a market unlike any other in the world and I for one think WN does not want any of it. But then again, I could be wrong.

As far as trans-pac flights from CA to HNL/OGG I could see that, though I doubt it will happen soon. If there ever was a flooded market with low/no yields it is LAX/SFO etc. to Hawaii. The way I see it flying to Hawaii would be a pretty big change to WN's operation which is perfectly suited to the markets they are in now. I would look for a lot more trans-cons and connecting-the-dots before WN seriously looks at Hawaii.

Aloha!
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lgbguy
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Wed Dec 03, 2003 10:16 am

>>> I also don't think WN wants to come into the interisland market. The flights are so short that WN probably wouldn't make much a difference as far as prices/frequency. These are flights that would never be flown except that they are between islands. It would be like flying 20 roundtrips a day between SJC and OAK. Its a market unlike any other in the world and I for one think WN does not want any of it. But then again, I could be wrong. <<<

I don't see why WN wouldn't want to serve the intra-island markets. I think they could make it a more efficent operation. I am not too sure how much ground time AQ has on thier flights. But maybe WN can squeeze another flight or two and increase fequencies (sp).


WW for the LGBGUY
 
luv2fly
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Wed Dec 03, 2003 10:24 am

OK, you have one carrier in bankruptcy protection and another for sale, tell me again what is the draw for them to come into this market? I believe there is more opportunity in the lower 48 and even Alaska than what this might offer in time.
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PSU.DTW.SCE
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Wed Dec 03, 2003 11:22 am

AQ runs just as fast a show on the ground as WN, if not faster on a regular basis. Their turn times are scheduled for 20-30 minutes at the outer islands. No need to increase frequency inter-island, they're already more than enough between AQ and HA.
 
nwa man
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Wed Dec 03, 2003 2:44 pm

Disclaimer: I don't know the market... apologies extended if I generalize too much...

But how is the inter-island market not profitable? There are a ridiculous amount of flights, the aircraft are turned quickly, the ones I have been on have all had approximate load factors of 80% or higher, and the fares (look at the websites of Aloha and Hawaiian, or Orbitz... at least $0.50 per mile, if not more, for the lowest fare) are exorbitant. How is this market not profitable? And what would have to change for it to be profitable?

Looking for a little help from the kama'aina on A.net....


N-Dub
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Bluewave 707
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying A

Wed Dec 03, 2003 5:46 pm

Here's an interesting factoid ... It may be off the topic, but concerns both WN and AQ ...

AQ leased a 732 from WN w-a-a-a-y back in the late 70s.
I am not sure if a photo exists on the airliners.net database. Imagine an old livery WN 732, with the old - old "Aloha" over the forward windows, and the tail with WN sans "Southwest"(?)
"The best use of your life will be to so live your life, that the use of your life will outlive your life" -- D Severn
 
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Aloha717200
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Wed Dec 03, 2003 7:05 pm

Here's that image.


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Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © George Gayuski



But really, I dont know why we must keep speculating about WN purchasing AQ. They match up in a few ways but their corporate culture is completely different. Their service is completely different.

That could be changed, but there's one more serious problem you face:

Aloha and Hawaiian belong to the people of Hawaii. For interisland transport, Aloha and Hawaiian are it. Aloha and Hawaiian have the name recognition for hawaii travelers. Sure, SWA would get a vacation destination out of the deal. But I'm pretty sure the folks in hawaii wouldn't like to see the Bird of Paradise being painted over with Canyon Blue. Most definitely not.

A merger with AQ would be a nightmare. And it wouldn't be well received by those of us who know and like Aloha Airlines. When this kind of subject keeps coming up, the one question I'm always left asking myself, is "Why does the original poster seem to want Aloha to cease to exist as a company?"

AQ would be gone if it merged. Why on this green earth would someone be enthusiastic about the possibility of Aloha's brand identity ceasing to exist at our airports and skies? It makes no sense to me and it bothers me every time this subject comes up.

Let Aloha live. Let's stop trying to find ways to make Aloha disappear.  Sad
 
lgbguy
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Wed Dec 03, 2003 11:52 pm

Well as the original poster I feel I must respond to ALOHA717200.

I do not want AQ to go away. As a matter of fact I think WN would make a big mistake by removing the AQ name from the aircraft. It would have to be run as a seperate carrier. If you remember what happened to USAir after they bought PSA. The folks at PSA had told US to leave the smile on the planes as people had become to know what that smile meant. PSA was ignored and now is US in the west coast markets? GONE.

I still want AQ name to remain. They are a very good carrier and service from the mainland to the islands is better than most.

WW for LGBGUY
 
luv2fly
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 12:09 am

OK if you run it as a separate carrier that doubles your costs, signage, uniforms, stationary, the lists goes on and on. Right there that defeats the purpose. I am sure if WN wanted Hawaii in the route map it would be, and also I remember reading or hearing that after the Morris Air purchase, WN is out of the airline buying mode.
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flyboyaz
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 12:41 am

As good as Southwest is, I doubt the people of Hawaii would be very pleased with one of their national carriers being replaced with an airline based in Texas. I have a couple of friends that lived in Hawaii and from what they told me, Hawaiians are very proud and don't like interference from the "mainland".

They certainly don't need cheap interisland fares...they are already cheap enough. And from what I hear, Aloha is an outstanding airline. I've yet to fly on them, but they would be my first choice when I get to go.

As far as cheap transpacific fares...yes....there is a need. Airfares to HNL are typically very high. It's only a matter of time before more low fare airlines come in. ATA has been serving the market, but I'm not sure if they are all that much cheaper.
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lgbguy
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 12:59 am

WN would incoporate AQ uniforms into thier own. Only a few of the AQ unform pieces would be kept. And whatever was kept would be for all to wear not only for AQ people. Signage is already in place. Stationary....WN already prints a few different one. Not that the heading is different but what is on the paper is. (ie, different addresses for all stations and managers). With WN purchasing power costs would come down. (ie, Fuel, MX, Res and more.)

Flyboyz - What? You don't need cheaper fares. Well if by some mircle WN and AQ ever happened please feel free to buy the highest price tickets.
 
flyboyaz
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 2:26 am

Well actually Lgbguy, I don't need cheaper airfares...I fly for free  Smile hehe

But the interisland fares are very affordable and actually comprable to WN's fares on flights of similiar length.

WN LAX-OAK day of departure oneway = $97
AQ HNL-KOA day of departure oneway = $93

WN would definetly lower transpacific flights, though I found a special fare for AQ.

WN LAX-BWI day of departure oneway = $299
AQ HNL-BUR day of departure oneway = $456, special fare $290
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lgbguy
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 3:06 am

ORG-HNL DST-KOA TRIP-OUTBOUND CXR-AQ 3DEC03 USD
THE FOLLOWING CARRIERS ALSO PUBLISH FARES HNL-KOA:
AA HA HP NW UA
TAXES INCLUDED-USE FL ENTRY
PSGR FACILITY CHARGES MAY APPLY-ENTER PXCHELP
ALL FEES/SVC CHARGES NOT INCLUDED UNTIL ITINERARY PRICED
SURCHARGE FOR PAPER TICKET MAY BE ADDED WHEN ITINERARY PRICED
QTE F/B BK FARE EFF EXP TKT AP MIN/MAX RTG
1 - F1 F%X 132.00 - - - - -/ - 1
2 - Y1 Y%X 119.00 - - - - -/ - 1
3 - L7AP L X 66.00 - - - %% -/ - 1
4 - BOW B X 92.00 - - - %% -/ - 1
5 - M3AP M X 80.00 - - - %% -/ - 1
6 - F F%X 406.00 - - - - -/ - 9
7 - Y Y%X 306.00 - - - - -/ - 9


According to the fares above AQ walk-up fare is $132.00 + surcharges.


ORG-LAX DST-OAK TRIP-OUTBOUND CXR-WN 3DEC03 USD
THE FOLLOWING CARRIERS ALSO PUBLISH FARES LAX-OAK:
AS CO HA HP UA US
TAXES INCLUDED-USE FL ENTRY
PSGR FACILITY CHARGES MAY APPLY-ENTER PXCHELP
ALL FEES/SVC CHARGES NOT INCLUDED UNTIL ITINERARY PRICED
SURCHARGE FOR PAPER TICKET MAY BE ADDED WHEN ITINERARY PRICED
QTE F/B BK FARE EFF EXP TKT AP MIN/MAX RTG
1 - YL Y X 97.00 - - - - -/ - 5
2 - Q7NR Q R 154.00 - - - %% 1/ - 5
3 - H14RNR H R 122.00 - - - %% 1/ - 5
4 - B7NR B R 180.00 - - - %% 1/ - 5
5 - M21RNR M R 58.00 - 02AP* - %% 1/ - 5


If you see here WN has a walk-up of $97.00 before surcharge.

If do not know the actual miles between HNL-KOA but I do know it is 384 nautical miles between LAX-OAK. Just looking at flight times it appears HNL-KOA would be less than 300 nm. Maybe you can help me out with the actual miles.
 
Coronado990
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 3:09 am

I think the difference between Southwest and Aloha is that AQ (and HA) act as a supplement to the interstate highway system (as does AS in Alaska) and Southwest competes against the interstate highway system. They have two different functions.

If WN wanted to serve Hawaii, I think it would just go to HNL to take advantage of the business world there. Honolulu is a large city. I know there is a lot of business, as far as the US Navy goes, from SAN-HNL.

It's hard to believe that less than 3 years ago, you couldn't get a flight from anywhere in California to Hawaii unless you departed from LAX or SFO. WN had a chance, back then, to take advantage of the gaps, but AQ & HA beat them to the punch.
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luv2fly
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 3:10 am

Lgbguy

WN would incorporate AQ uniforms into their own. Only a few of the AQ unform pieces would be kept. And whatever was kept would be for all to wear not only for AQ people. Signage is already in place. Stationary....WN already prints a few different one. Not that the heading is different but what is on the paper is. (ie, different addresses for all stations and managers).
With WN purchasing power costs would come down. (ie, Fuel, MX, Res and more.)

Bigger is not always cheaper! If that was true then why has AA experienced such financial hardships, UA is in bankruptcy and DL has massive debt already reported for the 4th quarter of 2003.

Also again if WN wanted Hawaii they do not need to buy a carrier to go there. And like everyone else they most likely would do the point to point flights and leave the inter-island to HA and AQ.

In reality AQ and HP would make a better fit, they already have aircraft with 1st class, they had Hawaii before, if anything I could see HP and AQ as one, way before I see WN and AQ in bed together.

Since AQ is for sale and everyone feels that Hawaii is such a good market to be in, then why has no one else already picked them up for themselves?



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flyboyaz
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 3:13 am

I don't know the exact mileage but it is far less than 300nm, probably about 100-150. I noticed that WN flies from TPA-FLL nonstop and I suppose that would be a better comparison since it's more like a HNL-KOA. One way walk up is $78. But still not a great difference. I know my friend from HI said that residents get cheaper airfares...I don't know if that is true or not. She was saying something like $25-$35 each way.
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SRD737NG
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 3:32 am

Hawaii residents do not get cheaper airfares than visitors to the islands, and definitely not for under $35!! Someone was pulling your chain....
 
lgbguy
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 3:37 am

If the locals are indeed getting a seat for only $25-35. I would agree with you that there is no way WN could lower those types of fares. But if it is really $132.00 then they would come down. At %132.00 each way, assuming 150 nm that would come out to be 0.88 cents a seat mile (aka RSM). That is quite a bit. In contrast FLL-TPA would come out to 0.58 cents per RSM.
 
PSU.DTW.SCE
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 3:50 am

Fixed costs....regardless of how long or short the flight is......
 
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Aloha717200
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 4:04 am

Last I checked, most of Aloha's interisland flights were $65 systemwide. Not counting Island Air of course.

At the time, Hawaiian's flights were $78-85 sytemwide.



Aloha's already IS a LCC. A full frills LCC. Their fares for an interisland ticket are the lowest, and their fares from and to the west coast hover around $480 round trip, a full one hundred dollars cheaper than the majors. (These numbers are based on my own research conducted last September.)

Aloha is indeed the low fare option to hawaii. With full frills service.
 
uprightNlocked
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 4:08 am

One point that was missed (maybe I did not see it in this long thread) is the amount of pax that AQ gains from the mainland carriers. I assume (maybe someone has the facts) that a good portion of pax on HNL-OGG or HNL-LIH are on tix purchased on AA, DL, UA etc from the mainland, through HNL on to other island destinations.

Is it not correct that WN and the other major carriers do not "get along" very well....how likely is it that AA can or will sell a DFW - LIH with a connection to WN in HNL??? WN would lose out on all the connecting traffic in HNL that AQ currently gets. Of course, those people would have to go somewhere and HA is not large enought to take all the pax.......
 
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aloha73g
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RE: What Are The Pluses And Minuses Of WN Buying AQ

Thu Dec 04, 2003 4:26 am

I have NEVER seen an interisland fare for $132. The cheapest they go is an occasional sale for $59 each way. Right now I believe the highest interisland fares are no more than $75-80 each way. I have read that the reason the flights are unprofitable is because of the cost of fuel--a lot of which is used to takeoff and climb for these short 20-30 minute flights. They also have to load/unload bags and passengers many more times a day than WN which increases their fixed costs. AQ and HA are just as, if not more efficient, than WN is as far as quick turnarounds and efficient/friendly service so I doubt WN could increase efficiency, atleast as far as turaround times.

Locals (kama'aina) do NOT get cheaper tickets than tourists at this time. Under the old coupon system kama'aina got unrestricted tickets for about $65 each way. Gov. Lingle has floated the idea of getting the federal government to subsidize AQ and HA interisland flights through the interstate highway system since they do the same job. As I said before, no one would fly these routes if they weren't between islands. It is only 100 miles from HNL-OGG. It would be like flying from SMF to SJC. I am not sure if this subsidy would ever happen, but as a kama'aina I understand that many people rely on AQ and HA for medical care, shopping and jobs. I think a pretty good case could be made for a subsidy.

But, I don't see WN coming to Hawaii anytime soon. The market is pretty much saturated.

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