N62NA
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UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 2:42 am

In a previous thread, the discussion turned to UA's declining presence in the NYC market (EWR, LGA, JFK). One of the participants stated:


By pursuing a strategy of O&D UA has cut down on the associated costs of providing transfers/connections, not to mention crew accomodation in NYC. I'm not sure I would categorise such a strategy as a "major problem".


Seems to me that with the reduction of UA's capacity at EWR (LAX-EWR is now being flown with combo of 757 and A319!) and the limited number of cities served from JFK (LAX, SFO, IAD, AA), Japan">NRT, LHR) and LGA (DEN, IAD, ORD - not counting the USAirways codeshare), they do have at least somewhat of a problem in the NYC market.

Yes, a nearby hub at IAD is nice, but New Yorkers (I am a former New Yorker, EWR used to be my home airport) have come to expect that they can fly to most mid sized and large cities without having to make a connection.

What used to be UA's main competitor, AA, serves 23 cities from LGA (132 flights), 33 cities from JFK (92 flights) and a measly 8 cities from EWR  Smile (but a respectable 43 flights).

To me, the numbers tell a story of UA giving up (to some extent) on the NYC market.

Looking forward to reading everyone else's opinions!
 
prosa
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 3:21 am

New York's importance as an O&D market has slipped a bit, given the region's sluggish economy, plus fear of flying is a huge issue in the area since 9/11.
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Scott4AA
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 3:34 am

If I am not mistaken, AA has even taken over dominance (atleast in the number of flights) on the ORD-LGA route. Including MDW, I know that AA has more dailies to LGA.
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AirlineFanatic
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 3:34 am

PANYNJ website indicates 2003 Full Year traffic increased 3.1% to 83.6 million passengers carried out of JFK/LGA/EWR.

Of that United ranked 5th with 4.2 million which was far from 4th place JetBlue carrying 7.1 million (moved to 3rd place as of March 2004).

I don't think that NYs importance has slipped... it is still one of the most sought after markets in the world and the numbers above show it.

At hand, the question of UA... NY has been carved up and CO, AA, DL, B6 are taking the share of passengers out of NY
 
N62NA
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 3:42 am


At hand, the question of UA... NY has been carved up and CO, AA, DL, B6 are taking the share of passengers out of NY

Dare I say it, is UA becoming a "secondary" carrier (for lack of a better term), on the order of a US, HP, NW?
 
SHUPirate1
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 3:49 am

I wouldn't exactly call US Airways a "secondary" carrier in the NYC-area market...in terms of flights, US Airways is the single largest carrier at LaGuardia (neither American or Delta is close in that respect), although US Airways has most of their flights out of LaGuardia on their Express carriers...
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N62NA
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 3:54 am


I wouldn't exactly call US Airways a "secondary" carrier in the NYC-area market


I would, despite the LGA presence, just look at the numbers:

http://www.panynj.gov/aviation/traffic/images/MATR_Dec2003_reg.PDF
 
quickmover
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 4:09 am

Is Continental still the largest carrier in the NYC area in terms of boardings?
 
captaink
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 5:28 am

With EWR being a major hub for CO, I don't see that as being impossible. I don't think any of the other majors have a hub the size of CO's EWR in the tristate area.
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SHUPirate1
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 5:33 am

N62NA-Those numbers don't include the regional carriers...more than 2/3rds of US Airways' flights out of LGA are operated by either regional jets or turboprops...if I'm not mistaken, 1-5 are turboprop-specific gates, and 6-8 are regional jet-specific gates...as always, somebody please correct me on this...
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N62NA
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 5:52 am


Those numbers don't include the regional carriers

Yeah, that is interesting... They include American Eagle, but maybe because it's owned by AMR? Same with COEX (owned by Continental).

Anyway, how much could inclusion of those ERJs, B1900 and Dash-8s add to the total for US? Even if it was equal to the 3 million that US mainline carried, that would only get them up to 5th place on the list.
 
ord
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 6:17 am

"To me, the numbers tell a story of UA giving up (to some extent) on the NYC market."

United was never big in the NY market, so there was really nothing to give up. That is why United announced the Dulles hub in 1986, so they could have a major operation on the East Coast.

As far as AA passing UA in NY, AA was always big in NY. Don't forget they were headquartered there until their move to the Dallas/Ft. Worth area in the late 1970s. AA has always had a large presence in NY.
 
SHUPirate1
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 6:18 am

But they don't include Eagle or COEX...if you look, sixth largest, one spot ahead of US Airways, happens to be none other than Continental ExpressJet...likewise, in the 12th spot, is American Eagle...the difference here is that AAE and COXJ both are one consolidated company, whereas US Airways has several different carriers serving the New York City area, namely Allegheny, Chautauqua, Colgan, Mesa, Piedmont, PSA, and Trans-States, plus the Mid-Atlantic Division...
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N62NA
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 7:13 am


United was never big in the NY market, so there was really nothing to give up.


I guess I'm showing my age here... I remember a time when UA was big in the NYC market, matching AA and TW flight for flight on the JFK-LAX/SFO routes and having nonstop flights from EWR and LGA to places like PIT, CLE and ORF, among lots of other secondary cities (a check of my 1976 OAG is probably in order at this point to verify my memory!).

Seems like since the early 90s, UA has been slowly losing market share in the NYC market, which is why they are now in the position they are in the NYC market.
 
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jfklganyc
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 7:36 am

Yes, UAL was biggerin NYC at one point. Much bigger. They were building their own terminal at JFK up until 9/11.
I agree with the statement that UAL is starting to become a secondary carrier. TW and Pan Am went through this before they went under. It's like watching a person die--a slow withering away from the big strong company they were. Not to say that they will die, but I think it is safe to say that the old giant UAL is gone.
Most of their flights now begin and end at a hub. There is very little point to point flying. Europe and S. America also have much weaker and thinner networks. 9/11 has taken its toll on everyone, but UA took it real hard.

PJ
 
FA4UA
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 8:06 am

I've been granted permission by the Senior VP of Onboard Service to copy and paste this correspondence from UA's intranet regarding this very problem:

Annonymous Flight Attendant Question: Why is United not expanding its service in the New York market? New York is the gateway to the world but not for United. We have the best base and are number 1 in everything, but yet we can't compete.

Corporate Communications Asnwer: United remains committed to the New York market, and we will continue to provide competitive fares and a full schedule of flights for our customers in the New York area. However, United in New York competes with many other airlines that have more of a presence in the area and have for a long time. It is extremely difficult to challenge these dominant carriers and it takes a very long time to get anywhere near profitable. We are in an environment in which we have a fixed size for the airline and that will be the case for some years to come. Thus, we need to deploy our aircraft to those markets that will generate the most revenue. This means a focus on our hubs. We fly to New York from all of our major hubs and strongest markets with a schedule that is best for our long-term competitiveness and profitability.


I think this sums it up pretty well

FA4UA
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N62NA
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 8:20 am

FA4UA -- thanks much, just confirms my original thought when I started this post.

I truly hope UA can return to profitability and grow in the years to come.
 
FA4UA
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 8:26 am

we'd be showing an operational profit if it weren't for the high fuel expenses!

I'm beginning to think UA should just go buy some land in Texas or Alaska and start drilling for oil. It might be cheaper! Wonder what the Bankruptcy judge would say to that proposal??

 Smile

FA4UA
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StevenUhl777
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 12:58 pm

FA4UA:

Thanks for the reply as well. While I highly doubt Judge Wedoff would approve an oil drilling venture, I'm sure he'd at least smile at the proposal.  Big grin

Price of oil seems to be coming down, at least it is for automobile consumers, hopefully the same holds true for Jet-A. And if it is, that's only good news for United. Add to that a blockbuster summer with minimal problems, and it will help bolster UA's ATSB decision in their favor. But, like you said in another post, I think their chances are 50/50, I'd say probably 60/40 at this point.

It doesn't surprise me one bit that UA has cut back NYC. They've done the same in MIA and SEA in recent years, and it makes business sense for them to focus on their core hubs and business. I'm glad to see UAL refocusing on international service, restoring and adding new service, and I think we'll continue to see more of it.

Any chance you're working #916 (SEA-IAD-Frankfurt) on 7/3?
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ord
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 10:56 pm

"I agree with the statement that UAL is starting to become a secondary carrier. TW and Pan Am went through this before they went under...
Most of their flights now begin and end at a hub. There is very little point to point flying. Europe and S. America also have much weaker and thinner networks. 9/11 has taken its toll on everyone, but UA took it real hard."

I completely disagree with this statement. Here's why:

First, how is United a secondary carrier? They are the 2nd largest airline in the world! And they would still be the largest if not for AA's purchase of TWA. Further, they have maintained all their hubs, and are still the only airline out of UA/AA/DL that is the #1 airline in all its hubs.

Second, United is not doing anything that TWA and Pan Am did. Those two airlines sold off crucial routes to stay alive (TWA all of LHR, Pan Am all of the Pacific and later LHR and the Atlantic). United has yet to do any of that.

Third, they have always had the majority of their flights go through their hubs. They gave up point to point in the early 1980s.

Europe is no weaker than beofre 9/11. All the major routes are still in place. South America has fewer cities but is stronger because the flights are routed through ORD and IAD instead of MIA.

Compare United to, say, Delta. Delta has withered away nearly all its Pacific routes, DFW hub, SLC hub and MCO mini-hub. I'd say they've been hurt even more.
 
hz747300
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RE: UA In NYC

Fri Jun 11, 2004 11:39 pm

This is sad--I love UA. I have always been treated, well, like a customer. However, AA expanded network out of JFK makes it more appealing on paper. The problem is I have been treated rudely on more than one occasion by AA staff, but I was willing to switch especially with the non-stop PHX flights. Then my girlfriend and all the other passengers were treated like crap during a delay at BNA on their way back to NY, confirming my suspicions: AA has no customer service.
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STT757
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RE: UA In NYC

Sat Jun 12, 2004 1:01 am

UAL is a West Coast Carrier, they dominate the West Coast.

AA, CO, DL are East Coast dominate, but relatively weak on the West Coast.
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COSPN
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RE: UA In NYC

Sat Jun 12, 2004 6:15 am

FA4UA

I'm beginning to think UA should just go buy some land in Texas or Alaska and start drilling for oil. It might be cheaper! Wonder what the Bankruptcy judge would say to that proposal??

Good Idea.. Maybe in a safe area of Iraq  Big grin

 
stirling
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RE: UA In NYC

Sat Jun 12, 2004 6:56 am

STT757-

You are so right! In the case of AA and DL. Didn't they gobble up airlines to have a better share of the West Coast market? First AirCal and then RenoAir, only to virtually dismantle the West Coast network they once coveted?

In the case of DL, they did a good job of maintaining the SLC hub, only recent economic realities forcing them to re-work SLC into an RJ hub. I think they kept SLC up to pre-merger or better levels of service, for what?, 15 years? Gotta be a record.

Question...something to think about.
Did WN displace PSA/USAir from the West.
Or
Did PSA/USAir abandon the West and WN filled the Void.
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coronado
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RE: UA In NYC

Sat Jun 12, 2004 12:24 pm

Could UAL drop their JFK-NRT flight as they reduce their presence in the New York area. Reminds me of NWA dropping their ORD-NRT flight back a few years ago, as they cut back on 'focus' city flying into Chicago. Especially since UAL strategy in Asia seems to be less on maintaining building a NRT hub as opposed to looking for more point to point opportunties between their US hubs and points in Asia? Will we see UAL JFK-NRT last out the year?
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StevenUhl777
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RE: UA In NYC

Sat Jun 12, 2004 12:38 pm

Coronado:

Good question....I always wondered why UA doesn't have an IAD-NRT route, but ANA does, so maybe I just answered my own question.

Guess it all depends on supply and demand....doesn't UA operate a 744 on the JFK-NRT route? Or did it get downgraded to a 772?
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Jamake1
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RE: UA In NYC

Sat Jun 12, 2004 2:20 pm

Hey Everybody:

Good topic tonight. So here is my two cents. Yes, at one time prior to September 11, United operated JFK-Rio/Sao Paulo, JFK-Caracas, plus the current vernue: LHR, LAX/SFO, and AA), Japan">NRT (I also think there was JFK-SJU at one point). I do think it's possible that UA could surrender AA), Japan">NRT at some point. I also think that United is smart to focus on their strengths, which of course are their hubs. Although unfortunate to those based in Miami, it was a smart business decision to eliminate the South America flying and redirect it to IAD and ORD. United enjoys strong O & D traffic on the JFK-LAX/SFO flights and is traditionally a major transcon player, so New York will most likely remain as a base for crewmembers as well as a significant transcon market. Similiar downsizing has occurred in BOS as well as UA maintained its strong transcon presence but has surrendered BOS-LHR. I do find it a bit troubling to witness AA going into UA markets such as JFK-AA), Japan">NRT, LAX-AA), Japan">NRT, LAX-SAL, and LAX-KOA. I haven't seen UA attack traditional AA markets. I am encouraged though by the return of SFO-AA), China">PEK (Beijing), IAD-ZRH, and ORD-KIX (Osaka) plus the upcoming expansion into the Carribean and Mexico.

Stirling: In answer to your question: I worked for PSA, which was acquired by USAir and yes, Southwest entered the Bay Area-LA market and USAir fled after the fact...

FA4UA: Do I know you? Are you based at SFO? The tone of your postings seem familiar to me...
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STT757
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RE: UA In NYC

Sun Jun 13, 2004 2:20 am

UAL should concentrate on defending and expanding their hubs, trying to keep a foot in markets they never will dominate makes no sense.

Move a JFK-LHR flight to Seattle, UAL has historicaly had a large presence in the Pacific Northwest. UAL also briefly operated SEA-LHR, the route was former Pan Am (SFO-SEA-LHR)

Also they should concentrate on ORD, they should be dominating the international market from ORD instead of AA.
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