rumorboy
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Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Wed Dec 21, 2005 11:33 pm

I guess they got another gate at MDW.


They will up to 28 flights by the end of May.


http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/051221/nyw022.html?.v=39
 
CALMSP
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Wed Dec 21, 2005 11:40 pm

get your front row tickets.......... box ............should see some addional flights on CO/COEX pretty soon I imagine!!
 
airportplan
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 12:10 am

AirTran adding to Midway routes
Dallas/Ft. Worth, Newark flights in '06

By Mark Skertic
Tribune staff reporter
Published December 21, 2005


AirTran Airways will add service from Chicago next year with direct flights to Newark, N.J., and Dallas/Ft. Worth.

Expanding service in Chicago is part of the Orlando-based discount carrier's strategy to enhance its appeal to business travelers. The move will solidify AirTran as the No. 2 airline at Midway International Airport, behind Southwest Airlines.

"Obviously, we're very interested in growing in Chicago," AirTran Chief Executive Joe Leonard said Tuesday. "This gives us non-stop flights to Atlanta, Boston, Minneapolis, Dallas and the New York market, all top 10 major business destinations."

By mid-May, AirTran will have 28 daily flights from Midway. Southwest, with about 200 daily departures, remains the largest carrier at the airport by a large margin.

AirTran has been targeting business destinations that Southwest does not serve. It also has moved quickly to fill voids left by ATA Airlines, which has been shedding routes rapidly while it works to exit bankruptcy protection.

ATA flies from Midway to Dallas/Ft. Worth, but it has dropped service from Midway to Boston, Newark and Minneapolis.

"[AirTran] wants those business markets more and more," said airline analyst John Pincavage. "They began as a mostly leisure airline, but they've gotten into the business market because the yields are higher. They're coming in to where ATA was, on a smaller scale."

AirTran will serve the new routes with Boeing 717 aircraft, 117-seat jets that include a 12-seat business section. The jet, which Boeing has announced it will stop producing, is the smallest commercial aircraft Boeing makes.

AirTran has been one of the biggest customers for the plane.

"It's a great situation when you have the smallest airplane and the lowest cost," Leonard said. "We typically have that with the 717. It's a good airplane to develop new routes with."

AirTran had plans to become a major presence at Midway in late 2004, but Southwest, the nation's largest domestic carrier, thwarted that effort.

At the time, ATA and Southwest were about the same size at Midway, while AirTran had only a small presence there with flights to its Atlanta hub.

When ATA entered bankruptcy, it reached an $87.5 million deal to sell AirTran the rights to 14 gates at Midway, along with landing rights at New York's LaGuardia Airport and Ronald Reagan National Airport in Washington. But Southwest trumped that deal with an agreement that gave it an ownership stake in ATA and created a code-sharing arrangement that allows Southwest and ATA to let fliers begin a trip on one airline and transfer to the other.

In recent months, ATA has shrunk so much that by early next year it will be down to one gate at Midway. Southwest will have 29 of Midway's 43 gates.

AirTran expects to have three gates by early next year. The airline also will be moving its operations to the A concourse at the airport from the B concourse.

It will launch three daily flights to Newark's Liberty International Airport March 8. A trio of daily flights to Dallas/Ft. Worth International will begin on May 9.

The carrier also is increasing service to Minneapolis, Atlanta, Orlando and Sarasota, Fla.

Also Tuesday, AirTran announced that its customer service, reservation and ramp agents had rejected joining the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. The airline said 36 percent of the ballots were in favor of union representation.





Copyright © 2005, Chicago Tribune
 
legion242
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 1:33 am

Helps make up for the loss of the DFW-LAX a little bit.
Don't make me release the monkeys!!
 
MaverickM11
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 1:51 am

I think FL is going to lose its shirt on these routes and/or pull them very quickly. Hopefully I'm wrong but history dictates otherwise.
E pur si muove -Galileo
 
CALMSP
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 1:55 am

MaverickM11...................I agree!!!!!  crowded 
 
quickmover
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 2:06 am

I would bet that FL foresees ATA pulling MDW-DFW in the near future, regardless of the WN codeshare. ATA will probably eventually go back to mostly charters. FL seems to be doing well on the other former ATA routes. Why would MDW-EWR be any different? They are only trying to fill up 3 117 seat 717s. Much easier than Multiple 737-800s. I think they will do OK.
 
JBLUA320
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 2:17 am

I couldn't say for DFW, but I think EWR will be a success.

The only competition they have directly to MDW is Continental, which is flying comprably sized equipment.

ATA had good loads from Newark to Midway and while I couldn't speak about how many of those were transit passengers thru MDW, with AirTrans growing presence in Chicago, perhaps they will fill the niche ATA served quite nicely.

Hard to call-- CO will fight hard-- but there are plenty of New Yorkers who don't like to put up with ORD and others who have to for business...

It will be interesting!!!

JBLU
 
lax44
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 7:06 am

So, with jet fuel costs heading lower (or so I think), what are the chances of FL resuming DFW-LAX.

Or was that just an excuse to abandon the route altogether?
 
wjcandee
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 7:39 am

(1) I think that the economics of Airtran's service are likely significantly better than ATA's -- cheaper aircraft with fewer seats to fill.

(2) However, ATA was a strong name in the Chicago market when it was running the EWR flights, and offered conx to quite a few Western cities, which Airtran won't. CO can be expected to match their fares. So it will be an interesting battle.

(3) Get ready for massive name confusion! People will be calling Airtran and trying to book thru flights on Southwest. People will be standing in line at Airtran's counter for their ATA flights. Sigh.

(4) Both ATA and Airtran are fine carriers, and I'm happy to see additional LCC action on the NY-MDW-DFW and MDW-DFW routes. Gosh, maybe now AA will have to cancel international service to Botswana in order to "shift assets" to additional flights to MDW.  Yeah sure

Best,

Bill
 
tpaewr
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 8:06 am

Quoting CALMSP (Reply 1):
get your front row tickets.......... ............should see some addional flights on CO/COEX pretty soon I imagine!!

Maybe. CO's reacts most strongly (think TZ), when the intent is to move in on EWR. Such as when TZ was looking to be EWR's LCC. Where as when prior EWR was just a spoke of MDW things were tolerated. Further back in the 90s when UA was wanting to regain somes if it's former status in EWR and added EWR-BOS. CO reacted with amped up flt on EWR-BOS, but also BOS-ORD,ORD-SAN, and SFO-LAX. The last one lingering a for a bit. Where as when AA started EWR-BOS a bit ago it was only only as a spoke to their BOS ops, no designs on EWR.

In short I'd say CO's reaction to FL will vary greatly depending on what FL's longterm plans are in EWR.
 
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STT757
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 9:06 am

Quoting Tpaewr (Reply 10):
In short I'd say CO's reaction to FL will vary greatly depending on what FL's longterm plans are in EWR.

I agree, also keep in mind that going from 6 daily ATA 737-800 flights between EWR and MDW to 3 daily FL 717 flights a day between EWR and MDW is a huge reduction in capacity, not so threatening but again we will see what their intentions are MDW or EWR centric.
Eastern Air lines flt # 701, EWR-MCO Boeing 757
 
Mexicana757
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 9:28 am

This is great news. Good to see Airtran increase operations at MDW. I was wondering when they would announce MDW-EWR. On the MDW-EWR flight CO only flies 3X daily with 735s. When ATA was on the route the same number of flights remained on CO. I believe this route will be a success for FL as they will be using a smaller airplane than ATA.

Now the MDW-DFW route will be crowded   as AA and ATA are both on the route. AA/AE has 5x daily with MD80/CRJ700 and ATA 3x daily with 738s. Lets see how they will do with this flight.

Airtran will also be adding one additional flight to each destination from MDW to ATL, MCO and SRQ in February. So by February FL will have 8X daily(I may need to corrected on this) to ATL; 2X daily to MCO; 2x daily SRQ.

I wonder if the additional flight to ATL is in response to DL pulling out the 3x daily 738 service that has been replace by ASA 5x daily with CRJ200s (Is the ASA service just for the winter??).

Quoting AirportPlan (Reply 2):
AirTran expects to have three gates by early next year. The airline also will be moving its operations to the A concourse at the airport from the B concourse.

As I have been saying all of this time (in other posts     finally FL will be moved to the A concourse. Good to see FL is getting a third gate, probably one of the gates that went back to the city from ATA. I suspect DL will be moved to A too and leave all of the B concourse for WN. Now to see if AA and CO will be moved to A too and leave C for WN since there are only three gates at that concourse.

[Edited 2005-12-22 01:41:03]
 
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Midway737
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 9:48 am

Quoting Rumorboy (Thread starter):
got another gate at MDW

Three gates by mid May

Quoting Wjcandee (Reply 9):
Get ready for massive name confusion! People will be calling Airtran and trying to book thru flights on Southwest. People will be standing in line at Airtran's counter for their ATA flights. Sigh.

That would be an interesting situation with all the name confusion.
 
Mexicana757
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 9:55 am

Quoting Midway737 (Reply 13):
Three gates by mid May

ChicagoBusiness.com (operated by Crains) says that they will have four gates by May instead of the three being mentioned.
http://www.chicagobusiness.com/cgi-bin/news.pl?id=18875
 
iowaman
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 10:02 am

Well,l with another flight being added MSP-MDW, they must be doing decent against the red tail. The thing I don't get is the first departure on FL leaves MDW at 9:10am arriving in MSP at 10:35am, which is too late for any business day travelers. It's the same thing to/from EWR and DFW. MDW to EWR gets in after 10am, and EWR-MDW after 11am. If they are wanting to capture more business traveler's they need to offer earlier departures so they can capture these business travelers on day trips which are generally the higher yielding pax.
 
FL1TPA
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 10:49 am

I'm an AirTran Flight Attendant that just finished a 3-day trip with some of the routing MSP-MDW-BOS BOS-MDW-MSP. We had an average of 50 passengers on each of the 4 legs; and this is the week before CHRISTMAS! I certainly hope the new DFW and EWR routes do well.

It takes time for travellers to get used to a new carrier on traditionally legacy routes. Also, businesses need time to work with our A2B corporate dept. to develop a travel relationship in those markets.

Just my  twocents .

FL1TPA
"Looks like I picked the wrong week to stop sniffin' glue."
 
Indy
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 11:18 am

Quoting FL1TPA (Reply 16):
We had an average of 50 passengers on each of the 4 legs

50 seats out of how many possible?
Indy = Indianapolis and not Independence Air
 
FL1TPA
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 11:25 am

717 are on these runs now with 117 seats. 12 Biz and 105 Coach.
"Looks like I picked the wrong week to stop sniffin' glue."
 
Indy
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 11:32 am

Wow thats not very good. Its going to be hard to compete on such a limited level against players like WN, UA and AA.
Indy = Indianapolis and not Independence Air
 
FL1TPA
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 11:38 am

WN I'm not really worried about since they don't serve MSP, BOS, EWR, or DFW. I just hope these routes turn a profit soon. The LAX-DFW route was always 90% full, but we couldn't turn a profit so we pulled it. I think MDW shows more promise.

FL1TPA
"Looks like I picked the wrong week to stop sniffin' glue."
 
Indy
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 12:18 pm

Will they keep the routes if they can't do any better than a 50% load?
Indy = Indianapolis and not Independence Air
 
FL1TPA
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 12:33 pm

I can't say for sure. I don't believe Chicago pays subsidies. If not, I would say the routes will be dumped if loads don't pick up.

As you may know already, FL does make deals for subsidies from cities that desire our service. If subsidized, those routes are maintained until the city discontinues the compensation - regardless of load factor. Wichita (ICT) for example pays subsidies on the ICT-ATL route. We did do a ICT-MDW route when ICT first opened. That route was not subsidized and loads were rarely over 50%. It was shortly discontinued.

FL has had a relatively small presence in MDW until last year (5 daily ATL). I just don't think the Chicago market is used to us yet.

FL1TPA
"Looks like I picked the wrong week to stop sniffin' glue."
 
Indy
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 12:48 pm

Whats the threat of WN starting up any of the routes served by FL and just flooding the market to drive FL out?
Indy = Indianapolis and not Independence Air
 
FL1TPA
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 1:09 pm

WN does operate on several FL routes with thier usual frequency. PHL-TPA for example. WN operates 3 non-stops daily, FL does 2. OR BWI-MCO, WN = 8 or 9 non-stops, FL = 3. They do jam a lot of seats into some markets but we seem to co-exist in peace. They have never tried to drive us out of a market and I don't see them trying in the future.

WN is the largest LCC in the country and turns a profit EVERY quarter. There's no need for "turf wars." I suppose another downturn in the industry could pinch them to the point they would resort to bullying other LCCs, but that's another thread.

FL1TPA
"Looks like I picked the wrong week to stop sniffin' glue."
 
pensacolaguy
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Thu Dec 22, 2005 11:19 pm

Quoting Rumorboy (Thread starter):
The carrier also is increasing service to Minneapolis, Atlanta, Orlando and Sarasota, Fla.

This is a bit off topic, but FL will add a fourth flight to ATL from PNS..Starting on February 15, 2006.
The fourth flight will arrive Pensacola at 12:32 p.m. and depart for Atlanta at 1:12 p.m. But currently FL is flying 4x daily ATL-PNS, the forth flight started December 15, 2005. Odd, huh?

Newslink
http://www.flypensacola.com/news.asp?rid=4262&action=detail
 
quickmover
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Fri Dec 23, 2005 12:29 am

"The LAX-DFW route was always 90% full, but we couldn't turn a profit so we pulled it. I think MDW shows more promise."

MDW-MSP is only 350 miles compared to around 1300 for DFW-LAX. Surely the break even load factor is less. Alot less fuel for sure. I think the MDW routes will come around.
 
FlyPNS1
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Fri Dec 23, 2005 12:42 am

Quoting Pensacolaguy (Reply 25):
But currently FL is flying 4x daily ATL-PNS, the forth flight started December 15, 2005. Odd, huh?

The current fourth flight is only for the Christmas high-season. It will go away shortly thereafter. The fourth flight in February should last through the spring and summer. To be honest, it's not really worth issuing a press release as FL routinely goes from 3x to 4x daily just depending on the time of year. However, given the large capacity reductions by DL, I wouldn't be surprise if FL's fourth flight becomes permanent.

As for the MDW-EWR and MDW-DFW, it's going to be a tough haul. However, if FL wants to be a serious player with business travelers in Chicago, they need a nonstop flight to the NYC market. Since they can't get more slots at LGA, EWR is the best option.
 
travatl
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Fri Dec 23, 2005 5:10 am

Quoting FL1TPA (Reply 22):
I don't believe Chicago pays subsidies. If not, I would say the routes will be dumped if loads don't pick up.



Quoting FL1TPA (Reply 20):
The LAX-DFW route was always 90% full, but we couldn't turn a profit so we pulled it

Chicago doesn't pay subsidies. Only markets that can't attract and sustain competition on their own do so.

LAXDFW never averaged a 90% load factor in any given month. More importantly, the route has never attracted the business yield, only liesure. That's been our biggest problem with DFW - we just can't get the business traveler. That's the reason we've dropped DFWLAX, and the same reason we're dropping an ATLSFO turn. They both tie up aircraft with extremely low or unprofitable yields for too many hours a day.

I predict the new MDW routes will be profitable within six months of startup, and I think the company will pull out all the stops to ensure it. They've wanted this for a while....

- Travis
 
OPNLguy
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Fri Dec 23, 2005 5:46 am

Quoting Wjcandee (Reply 9):
Gosh, maybe now AA will have to cancel international service to Botswana in order to "shift assets" to additional flights to MDW.

LUVed it...!

I wonder if AA will end up matching AirTran fares on all of AA's ORD and MDW flights, similar to what they did to AirTran's DFW-LAX flights?
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
quickmover
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RE: Airtran To Add EWR And DFW To MDW

Fri Dec 23, 2005 5:55 am

" wonder if AA will end up matching AirTran fares on all of AA's ORD and MDW flights, similar to what they did to AirTran's DFW-LAX flights?"


I would almost think the fact that WN announced a code share with ATA on this route would be enough to trigger that kind of response. FL entering the market on top of that will surely draw a response. I just can't see ATA sticking scheduled service at all long term, but who knows.