Posts: 22
Joined: Sat May 14, 2005 2:09 am

Unbalanced Airline Schedules

Fri Jan 26, 2007 5:41 am

Can someone shed some light on why airlines run "unbalanced" schedules between a pair of cities? For example, United flies 3x daily from SFO - EWR (departures ~ 9:00, 13:00 & 23:00), but only 2x daily from EWR - SFO (departures ~ 6:30 & 18:00). Similar sized aircrafts (mostly A319s through mid-Feb, then mostly 757s after that) are used in both directions, so it is not like they are making up the imbalance in seats by running larger aircraft westbound. It seems like a mid-day/early afternoon departure from EWR that would arrive in SFO around 16:00 to allow for connections to Hawaii or other locations up & down the pacific coast would be useful. By the way, they make up this difference by running EWR-ORD 8x daily while ORD-EWR is only 7x daily.
Posts: 2668
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 6:25 am

RE: Unbalanced Airline Schedules

Fri Jan 26, 2007 6:51 am

Airlines do this for a number of reasons:

1) Positioning - To allow an airplane to get to another city
2) Unequal demand - No route has exactly equal amounts to/from. Sometimes it makes sense to operate 2 flights to, and 3 flights from, for example.
3) Scheduling - Eastbound flights from the West arrive usually 7-8 hours later than the local time they departed from, so an airline may not be able to fit in a flight in the opposite direction in the time period it wants. It may be better for that aircraft to continue on to another city.
4) Rotation - Airlines may want to rotate an aircraft between hubs, for example a UA plane may fly SFO-EWR-LAX, while another may fly LAX-EWR-SFO, etc.


Popular Searches On

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos