vw
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Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 7:08 am

With Northwest having 2 daily services to AMS and KLM coming back this summer it seams odd that Icelandair would fly into MSP. How long have they been flying into MSP? Is there any particular reason that they fly into MSP?
Thanks VW


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Continental
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 7:09 am

Good connections to Europe, they offer good deals to Iceland, etc. They've been in MSP for many years.

co
 
Cory6188
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 7:09 am

There is a huge Scandanavian/Icelandic population in that area, so there is a large market for FI's flights to MSP.
 
nwa man
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 7:22 am

There is a huge Scandanavian/Icelandic population in that area, so there is a large market for FI's flights to MSP.


Please don't start with this again... check out the end of this thread.

http://www.airliners.net/discussions/general_aviation/read.main/1305125/

A few of the main points...

-more people live in Fresno than Iceland, so even a "large Icelandic community" would be miniscule
-this route maintains profitability through connections (including some Scandinavian cities, so I guess you're closer to reality than others)
-MSP is one of the top 15 largest metropolitan areas in the United States... and NW does need a little competition at the airport... the three AMS dailies are largely filled by connecting passengers
-considerations for ethnic routes pale in comparison to consideration for business routes... basically, there's money to be made here and FI has carved out a nice little niche. Add to this the fact that NW has been more than accomodating to them (gates, check-in areas, etc) and Icelandair has found a recipe for success at MSP.


Regards,

N-Dub
Create your own luck.
 
BA
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 7:28 am

We meet again NWA Man!  Smile

-more people live in Fresno than Iceland, so even a "large Icelandic community" would be miniscule

Just because the population of Iceland is miniscule, it doesn't mean there isn't a large world-wide Icelandic diaspora.

Take Lebanon for example (my country). There are 3.7 million people in Lebanon, however, world-wide there are more than 20 million Lebanese.

I do not know the world Icelandic population. But it isn't as small as you think it might be....

Regards
"Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need." - Khalil Gibran
 
Horus
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 7:52 am

Even if the Icelandic population in small there, they are all well-off and fly back home a number of times a year.
EGYPT: A 7,000 Year Old Civilisation
 
mrniji
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 7:56 am

Is Europe - US the biggest market for FI?
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
Mikey711MN
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 8:45 am

Is Europe - US the biggest market for FI?

They don't have any other market.

I plan on living forever. So far, so good...
 
redngold
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 8:53 am

All of that, aside from the fact that if you're going to Kulusuk, Reykjavik, Faroe Islands, Glasgow or London, you're going to overfly them on MSP-AMS.

I also wonder if the MSP-KEF flight doesn't have a large U.S. armed forces ridership, to the U.S. bases in Iceland.

redngold

[Edited 2004-03-18 00:54:07]
Up, up and away!
 
nwa man
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 9:40 am

We meet again NWA Man  Smile  Smile/happy/getting dizzy  Smile/happy/getting dizzy  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

Just because the population of Iceland is miniscule, it doesn't mean there isn't a large world-wide Icelandic diaspora.

True... I'll give you that point. But Lebanon's population is about 12-13 times the population of Iceland. So say that Lebanon's diaspora is also typical of Iceland's... (unlikely... no offense meant, but aside from a few volcanoes, Iceland hasn't been subjected to anything like the political problems in Lebanon) that there are about five times as many Icelandic people outside of Iceland than actually living in the country. That would equal about 1.5 million people. Odds are that there's not enough Icelanders in Minneapolis to justify around 1,000 weekly seats to and from Iceland from the City of Lakes.

If there are, I'd like to know. Google couldn't give me any hard numbers of persons of Icelandic descent in the Upper Midwest, let alone Minneapolis. I'm going to stand by the point I made back in December - that this route exists because Keflavik is perfectly located as a connecting point for MSP-Europe flights until I learn differently.

Even if the Icelandic population in small there, they are all well-off and fly back home a number of times a year.

That's a nice statement. Care to back it up with any sort of facts?

All of that, aside from the fact that if you're going to Kulusuk, Reykjavik, Faroe Islands, Glasgow or London, you're going to overfly them on MSP-AMS.

NW also flies MSP-LGW...


Regards,

N-Dub
Create your own luck.
 
KLM777
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 10:16 am

To my best knowledge Icelandair is most popular with backpackers for their relatively cheap fares. I think they are not very attractive to business passengers, although their connection times are pretty good.

Kind regards,

Jeroen
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pwm2txlhopper
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 11:11 am

While I'd normally agree that leisure travelers of a specific ethnic group, traveling back and forth to/from their native countries wont' generally drive an airline to run a certain route, I believe in the case of FI at MSP that there might be some exception here.
For one reason, there is only one way to get to Iceland from the U.S., short of sailing the seas, and that is to fly. FI is you're only option for getting there to the best of my knowledge. That goes for business travelers too, unless they come from a company that has access to a corporate jet.
Secondly, not only is there a large Nordic population (Icelandic, Norwegian, Sweedish) in the Minneapolis metro area, there is also a large population of these groups for hundreds of miles around MSP throughout that Northern portion of the USA.
Also, from my personal experiences with FI, if you're flying to Northern Scandinavian destinations such as OSL, or ARN. You usually get there faster with the quick layover in Keflavic than you would connecting somewhere in Continental Europe.
Just my two cents.

 
USAFHummer
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 11:16 am

Thats a terrible route map in route 7 considering they are hubbed in KEF and not Reykjavik which isnt exactly next to KEF...

Greg
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ramprat74
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 12:16 pm

The main airport for the capital Reykjavik is KEF. They share the airport with the US Navel air station.
 
LH423
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 12:46 pm

USAFHummer:Keflavík is not far from Reykjavik but since most people have never heard of Keflavík, Reykjavik is the name generally used. It's just semantics.

From what I've heard, FI does quite a business out of MSP...me thinks that has a bit more to do with the local ethnic background of much of Minnesota than some people would like to admit.

LH423
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Mir
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 12:51 pm

I think they have their domestic flights with mostly O&D out of Reykjavik airport with 737s, but since the runway there is too short for a 757, they fly their main routes out of Keflavik.
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
Shawn Patrick
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 2:26 pm

FI is really the only way to fly to Iceland. You have to remember that US passengers are funneling into all 5 gateways from all over the US. You can't fly to Iceland if you don't pick up FI at one of these cities. So it's not so much a question of O&D from MSP: there are passengers from all over the US connecting through MSP to get to KEF.

For example, a friend of mine is flying DEN-MSP-KEF on Saturday. NW/FI

I really don't buy that "Icelandic population" argument. Sure, there are some Icelandic people in Minneapolis. Doesn't accout for much traffic. FI's traffic comes from all over the US.

Shawn

 
USAFHummer
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 2:36 pm

Semantics or not, Reykjavik has its own airport for domestic flights, and KEF is 50 km from Reykjavik (not exactly close by)...me being the geographically stingy person that I am, I still do not like that map at all...

Greg
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nwa man
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 4:48 pm

Shawn-

Very true. Although MSP accounts for a large percentage of FI's O&D traffic, many passengers are known to interline between NW and FI if their final destination is Keflavik. LAX-MSP-KEF, SEA-MSP-KEF, and SFO-MSP-KEF are examples of this. Perhaps this is why NW is so eager to lend a helping hand to Icelandair - passengers on the FI flights are funneled in via the NW system.

And although the Icelandic population may be a factor, I'd be more willing to admit that Nordic connections drive the flight (e.g. MSP-KEF-ARN), instead of O&D between MSP and KEF.

Regards,

N-Dub
Create your own luck.
 
TFJamie
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 6:58 pm

Hi

One more thing, the MSP thing is a very good expansion to Icelandair's route network because all the other destinations in the US are on the east coast. So this is generally considered as the hub do go through for the rest of the US. Why MSP and not other airports in the area? It's one of the shortest flights from KEF to anywhere in the mid-US and they apparently got very well on with NW, there is, I think, an agreement about the traffic funneling from western US via MSP through to KEF.

Iceland having a population of 300000 has around the same number of people all around the world, at most. There is very little percentage of the pax on these flight flying for ethnic reasons. Maybe the Nordic connections, but still a great minority, and do not by a long shot justify the flight.

USAFHummer
Regarding KEF being far away from Reykjavik. It is 50 km, but it's a straight road in an unbuilt area and there's never heavy traffic there so the travel time is around 15-20 minutes to the outskirts of Reykjavik (that's only 30km) and if Reykjavik would have an international airport it would not be closer. The Travel time from KEF to REK or the city center is 40 minutes, not much more than anywhere else in the world, and certainly an easy connection. $90 taxi trip or $10 bus trip.
 
voodoo
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 7:24 pm

Do Icelanders go shopping at the Mall of America? I know there have been Christmas shopping charters to St.John's NL with a full Air Atlanta 747..(I know: the MSP flights aren't charters).

[Edited 2004-03-18 11:42:22]
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TFJamie
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 8:28 pm

Not except they are there on another business, the fares are a bit too high for that ($900+tax cheapest) when we can get flights to GLA or LHR for $200+tax
 
gte439u
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Thu Mar 18, 2004 11:21 pm

To argue that the Scandinavian-American community drives the FI flights to MSP is a flawed one. According to the United States Library of Congress, Scandinavian immigration to the United States peaked around 1900 and stopped almost completely around 1930. Therefore, most of the Scandinavian-Americans in the area will maintain very few ties with the land of their ancestors since they have not lived in Europe for 100 years. For example, my mother's family moved to Minnesota from Sweden in 1890's, but there has been little contact with our European relatives in the ensuing years.

Generally speaking, ethnic heritage travel is a large factor only when the immigrant population is relatively new to the United States. One can look towards the Mexican or Colombian communities as examples where ethnic heritage travelers make up a large portion of the passengers.
 
LH423
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:22 am

I have to disagree a bit with Gte439u. I have friends of Swedish descent whose family has been here for a long time yet they still have travelled to Sweden several times. While I don't feign this to be indicative of all descendants of immigrants, I think despite the separation there is still a desire to see where one came from. I know that I'd one day like to see Ireland (the last remaining country of descent I haven't been to) even though my family has been here over 80 years.

In my opinion there are two things that drive European travel for Americans. One being going to a place where English is spoken, like the UK or Ireland. The other is where your family is from. If only just because in someways it's a familiar place to start off from.

LH423
« On ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux » Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
 
MAH4546
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:28 am

One being going to a place where English is spoken, like the UK or Ireland.

That doesn't explain why Paris is the most visited city by American tourists in Europe.
a.
 
bobnwa
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:38 am

If Icelandic is like every other carrier flying trans-atlantic, then the majority of its passengers are Europeans and not from the US. The airport on the US side of the service is less important than the airport on the European side.
 
ARCJET
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Fri Mar 19, 2004 7:18 am

Having completed 2 tours at Keflavik I can say that you can see Reykjavik from NAS Keflavik. The road is rather good and it doesn't take long to drive between the 2 cities. The Naval Base at Keflavik is served by the weekly AMC military charter flight from Norfolk NAS and Baltimore. Miami Air operates a 737 on the route. When I went to Keflavik in 1988 it was via a Hawaiian Air DC-8 from Philadelphia. I returned to Keflavik in 1994 aboard an ATA 757. As stated earlier, there is a large Icelandic population in the Minnesota/Wisconsin area.
Charleston, SC
 
prebennorholm
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Fri Mar 19, 2004 7:55 am

The roughly 280,000 Icelandic cityzens don't mean too much for Icelandair. They do travel a lot, but by far the most important FI routes are to CPH and LHR - 3 or 4 757s a day in summer.

Icelandics are not typically migrating people. They often take up temporary jobs or education abroad, but they mostly know where they belong, in their own country which arguably offers the best living conditions in the world.

I would estimate that less than 100,000 ethnic Icelandics are permanent residents in foreign countries.

MSP - KEF, that's to a large extent a stepping stone for American and British people going between MSP and LHR. There are 30 times more people living in London than in Iceland. Thirty times!!!

Icelandics travel a lot. But a lot more in summer. Therefore outside the high summer season you get pretty good deals with FI between Europe and America. And a lot of people like a couple of hours being able to stretch the legs half way over the pond.

And if you have a 3 or 4 hours stopover, then you can go and swim in the famous Blue Lagoon in a snow storm in 105-110 deg. F hot water from the volcanic underground.

Happy landing, Preben Norholm
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gomuppets
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:06 pm

I doubt that FI is hurt by the ethnic origins of the peoples of the upper midwest, but honestly i doubt it is helping a great deal.

Remember NW tried to fly an MSP-OSL a few years back. it was short lived. Even the Swedish Consulate in Minneapolis has been rumored to close (or maybe it already did). There are also a number of people of German decent in MN & WI and the Dakotas, but i don't see LH flying to MSP.

My guess is that FI chose MSP as there was a good market to tap. NW controls all flights across the atlantic save FI's flight to KEF. FI tends to offer good fares which resonate well with the massive number of college student in the Twin Cities area. I think for FI, MSP becomes what ORD is for most other European airlines, just with less competition. Similar to their flights to WI / KBWI), USA - Maryland">BWI (not IAD).

that's my 2 pennies.
 
MAH4546
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:14 pm

If Icelandic is like every other carrier flying trans-atlantic, then the majority of its passengers are Europeans and not from the US. The airport on the US side of the service is less important than the airport on the European side.

Every other carrier? Not quite. That statement is just plane false. While I am sure that some airlines flying trans-Atlantic carry more Europe-orginating traffic, I promise you that others, like American Airlines, don't. I believe Air France is one of the airlines that carriers more US-originating passengers. And Icelandair likely is as well.
a.
 
bobnwa
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Fri Mar 19, 2004 11:27 pm

MAH4546,

I stand by my statement that all trans-atlantic carriers carry more Europeans on board than US citizens. Makes no difference if it is a US carrier or not. I'm sure there are individual flights where this is not true but it is true over a period of time.

If you have figures to show this is not true, please give them.
 
goomba
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Fri Mar 19, 2004 11:57 pm

How's the seat pitch/leg room on their 757? I could not imagine being stuck on a 757 for 8 hours crossing the Atlantic.

I've done 4 hours 30 minutes on a 757 - Delta from San Jose, CA to Atlanta and I thought I was going to croak.
 
Guest

RE: Icelandair In MSP

Fri Mar 19, 2004 11:58 pm

It's interesting that not only does FI publish compeitive fares to Europe for markets like DTW, but it also funnels traffic via MSP instead of the East Coast:

e.g. DTW-AMS on IcelandAir
ROUTING 2001 FROM-TO DTT-YY-MSP-FI-REK-FI-AMS

(...which means you fly DTW-MSP direct on a carrier willing to release seats at their price, then fly IcelandAir to REK/AMS)
 
Mikey711MN
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Sat Mar 20, 2004 12:53 am

Goomba, FI's 757s are no better or no worse than anyone else's as far as seat pitch is concerned based on my experiences with them. But it's not like you're on it for a consecutive 8 hours (although the MCO-KEF run pushes it a bit!) anyway.
I plan on living forever. So far, so good...
 
ORDagent
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Sat Mar 20, 2004 2:26 am

Icelandair isn't just a backpacker's airline anymore. Iceland is a Hot/Cool (all puns intended) destination with a rocking nightlife in KEF and an incredible adventure/ecoturism market as well. The FI business class fares are also less expensive than most carriers to Europe. Admitedly FI c class isn't as lux as LH and company but the price is right for cost conscious business travelers. I personally am attached to FI in a big way. I was born in Germany and FI was by far the cheapest way to get from ORD to home via LUX. Those DC-8's hold great memories for me. The only issue was that even though I had a window seat is could be against a wall since the windows on a DC-8 are so far apart compared to the seat pitch of a modern y cabin.
 
aviatortj
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Sat Mar 20, 2004 3:09 am

With Minnesota having one of the fastest growing Somalian populations in the US right now, going by the above hypothesis, it will be no time before we see one of these.


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asgeirs
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RE: Icelandair In MSP

Sat Mar 20, 2004 7:30 am

Mir, just a small correction from your reply:15 above:

> I think they have their domestic flights with mostly O&D
> out of Reykjavik airport with 737s, but since the runway
> there is too short for a 757, they fly their main routes out
> of Keflavik.

The Icelandic domestic traffic is not served by jets, only turboprops, mostly Fokker 50's.

The only 737's and bigger that come regularly to REK are some of Islandsflug's 737's, but they have a repair base at REK. It also happens maybe once a year that Icelandair needs to land their 757's at REK if KEF is closed due to weather (strong sidewinds). But I don't think they can take-off again unless they are empty.

And ORDagent (from reply:34), I presume you mean the rocking nightlife in Reykjavik, not Keflavik  Smile/happy/getting dizzy


Cheers,
Asgeir
Reykjavik Aviation Photography - Just bring the aircraft to us and we'll photograph them! :-)

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