CanadaEH-- This summer is heating up to be one hell of a battle. Air Canada is expected to emerge from CCAA and add smaller jets, Zip is shifting its fleet from 737-200's to A319's, Westjet is adding LiveTV, moving its eastern hub to Toronto, and adding 12 more aircraft, Jetsgo is adding 18 F100's, and Canjet is "supposedly" adding 20 aircraft over the next two years (details have not been announced)...Who's at a greater risk of losing customers? Who's in the best position to win customers? What airline has the better strategy going into the summer?
Things are still so up in the air -- no pun intended-- that unless (Heaven forbid) any of 'em has a real catastrophe or something over the next several months, I don't think even the management of the carriers themselves much know how and where things are all going to shake out. And assuming there are only maybe a few minor problems --like perhaps cash-flow issues-- during that time, I guess it'll be around the end of the year before "winners" and "losers" or "water treaders" labels can start to be pinned on the players in question.
I hope CanJet makes their fleet-upgrade announcement imminently --say in the next month or so-- since even though they're by far the smallest player, that question of what planes they're going to get is about the biggest one, bigger than even Jetsgo route announcements using their F100s.
Jetsgo does seem to need to add a bit of 'tender loving care' to their contingency customer service, and I hope they address that and pronto since they're going to need all the positive customer experiences they can get, to help fill those F100 seats in the earliest possible goings. Having said that though I'm way more confident about their viability in the Canadian domestic market, flying those around rather than the MD80s except for the longhauls. Canada --especially in a now-getting-crowded market but even if not -- really is a F100-sized marketplace for the vast majority of the routes flown. A "poor airline's" Embraer 170/190, if you will.
And Jetsgo seems to be doing basically quite well indeed using the MD80s on the Sun routes. I hope that was what they had in mind for them all along, right from the early goings in their business plan so that what they're doing now with the F100s is just another step in a long-thought-out process.
CanJet I guess can cruise on its good rep --and mini-frequent flyer plan-- for a while, though that fleet announcement of theirs will be huge, and until and unless it's revealed I guess they're still sort of an enigma overall.
, the soap opera continues of course
Who knows. From the pension thing to possibly-ongoing-bad quarterly numbers to not that great a customer service rep themselves these days -- not to mention them being still sort of a lumbering behemoth of an airline generally-- there are all kinds of twists and turns that their fortunes could take this spring and summer. I don't even want to hazard a guess -- it's just too week-by-week as far as I'm concerned!
Though most people in Central Canada who are over fifty or older I think are and will continually to be weighted in favour or taking Air Canada over anybody else, even if there's a bit of a price premium to do so.
Westjet, what can anyone say, seems to some extent "the legend continues". At YUL
they're already like Canadian (and CP
Air) used to be, namely THE number 2 fixture after Air Canada, in the domestic part of the terminal. And this after just being in town not even a year now --they're really doing great.
Almost a shame that YUL
's domestic facilities is still basically the same ol original 40-year-old setup -- with AC
hogging the (30 year old) domestic pier, SG C6
and even-bustling Westjet all have to contend with being marooned out at the (increasingly-laughable) aeroquay. The Airport IS
apparently going to be building brand-spanking-new check in counters in the domestic side of the terminal at least, this summer -- but only for AC
. That whole side really needs to be done from scratch there -- but who knows if it will be and even there, probably two or three years away in any event. Ah well, what can ya do sometimes