haggis79
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Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Fri Mar 02, 2007 1:59 pm

Hi everyone,

when doing quite some frequent travelling in the US in the last year or so it striked me that all gates (except for the ones at international terminals) seem to be assigned to a specific airline. As opposed to that, in Europe we tend to have the airport company (or a contract carrier) operating the gates so that within a certain terminal a flight can be assigned to pretty much any gate. Any reasons for that? I'd think that "our" system in Europe seems to be much more flexible, for instance in case of delays or when it comes to a carrier only having one or two flights a day from a certain airport...
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lincoln
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Fri Mar 02, 2007 3:01 pm

As far as I know at most airports in the US airlines have a leasehold interest in "their" gates -- not infrequently a long-term lease -- meaning that that space is theirs and within reason (and the terms of their lease) they can do what they want to it-- put in their own podiums, arrange furniture apply the corporate branding, etc. In some cases they may also be responsible for the maintenance/renovations to the space as well -- and at some airports the airline actually owns the physical jetway, so when they move, so do the jetways. Just like a lease on an appartment, all sorts of things happen -- some airlines take great pride in their gate areas, some pay no attention. Some keep the same lease for 30 years, some have a 10 year lease and then sublease their gates after 5... I still don't completely understand all of the "ins" and "outs"

I also think that the US system is, to an extent, a remanant of regulation, but that's a different subject entirely.

I see advantages and disadvantages to both systems. I personally prefer the US system because every airline (and therfore every gate) has its own 'feel' and 'personality' rather than one giant sterile airport. I also feel that when the airlines are handling their own flights (as opposed to a ground handling company or another airline) the employees have a vested interest in keeping people happy and making sure things go smoothly. Maybe, though, that's just a symptom of the US implementation of the system.


Lincoln
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hawaiian717
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Fri Mar 02, 2007 5:06 pm

One advantage of the US system is that it allows airlines to customize the gates to their needs. At many US airports, Delta has installed plasma TVs that display information about the departing flight. I remember it came up as an issue in Honolulu, because Delta wanted to install them but couldn't because HNL actually has common use gates (though airlines tend to stick to the same general areas), so no plasma screens in HNL.
 
acidradio
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Fri Mar 02, 2007 11:22 pm

Quoting Haggis79 (Thread starter):
s opposed to that, in Europe we tend to have the airport company (or a contract carrier) operating the gates so that within a certain terminal a flight can be assigned to pretty much any gate.

Often in the US, ground handling is handled in-house by an airline, rather than contracted out to another company. To have the same gates (rather than a shared gate arrangement) is beneficial to the workers, as the breakrooms and work areas are all located nearby along with the operations people. If all of your gates are located together, rather then spread apart, it makes it easier for the ramp workers to move between flights, which makes them more efficient and makes it easier to share ground equipment. In the event of a rebooking or aircraft swap, passengers only have to walk a short distance, not across the whole airport.
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flyorski
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Fri Mar 02, 2007 11:25 pm

Are there any other airports in the us, which like HNL do have a gate share system?
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lincoln
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Fri Mar 02, 2007 11:33 pm

Quoting Flyorski (Reply 4):
Are there any other airports in the us, which like HNL do have a gate share system?

LAS at least concourse D is set up that way -- airlines seem to pretty much use the same gates but all of the gate equipment is owned by the airport, and in therory, at least any airline could log on to any gate. Note though that unlike the European system although the -equipment- is common, most airlines have their own employees working the gates.

ONT seems like it was built with the intention of being common use at some point, but every airline definately has their own gates -- they just all look identical.

Also many airports have "charter gates" -- one or two gates (and ticket counter positions) that are held for airlines that only operate into that airport infrequently enough that it doesn't make sense for them to sign an exclusive lease or place their own employees at the airport.

Lincoln
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airportplan
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Fri Mar 02, 2007 11:52 pm

Most US airports have Exclusive or Preferential gate agreements with their carriers. This happened because in most cases the carriers particularly at hub airports have financial stakes in the terminals that they use.

For example, at Chicago ORD when United's Terminal 1 was build for approximately 1 Billion dollars in the mid 1980s the bonds that were used to construct the terminal were back by United. These bond are normally paid off using PFCs, landing fee, concession or other revenue streams that are dependent on consistent passenger levels. If these bonds go into default because UA "co-signed " on the bonds they are responsible. Their asset could be seized by the financing institution to cover the defaulted bonds. In return for UA taking the financial risk they get exclusive use of the gates. Most new US gate agreements are not exclusive but preferential. That mean the airline is the primary user of the gate but the airport has rights to put another carrier of the gate if they are not using it effectively.

Most US airport directors would like to have common use agreements as are common in Asia and Europe. But it would be very difficult to finance terminals particularly at hub airports where the main carrier requires a large number of gates.
 
COSPN
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 12:35 am

Guam is common Use..like HNL another expense is the common use computers and boarding pass printers...
 
floridaflyboy
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 12:41 am

Quoting Hawaiian717 (Reply 2):
One advantage of the US system is that it allows airlines to customize the gates to their needs.

Exactly. That's important, especially at hub airports. For example, in SLC, before the olympics, DL decorated up their gate areas with olympic signage and commemorative decorations. Under a common-gate agreement, that would have been much more difficult to do.

Quoting Flyorski (Reply 4):
Are there any other airports in the us, which like HNL do have a gate share system?

I think SNA is, to some extent, isn't it? When I was there a few years ago, I remember we came into one certain gate on United, and then wehen we flew back out, there was a Southwest 737 parked at the same gate we had come into. Could someone elaborate on how SNA works?
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SHUPirate1
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 12:49 am

Miami International Airport, believe it or not, is entirely common-use.
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ikramerica
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 12:53 am

It's just one more difference between the USA "private enterprise as much as possible" vs. the EU and elsewhere "the state should be in charge of everything" mindset. At some airports, the airlines own the terminals, elsewhere, they have long term leases. There are some airports and terminals which have shared use gates out of necessity, but when possible, it's not that way.

Don't get me wrong, I don't think it's a good thing in some cases. But I also know that in the USA, if the government owns/runs it, it will usually be rundown or at least 15 years out of date. (HNL is a good example, T6 at LAX, etc.) When private companies are in full charge, you get modern and beautiful (CO at EWR C and IAH E, AA at LAX, DL at SLC, etc.) It's a long time ago in the USA where a government building or facility was built as a showcase. I can only assume that if Washington D.C. were built today, it would consists of concrete block buildings and portable trailers...  Wink
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Goldenshield
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 12:55 am

Quoting Floridaflyboy (Reply 8):
I think SNA is, to some extent, isn't it? When I was there a few years ago, I remember we came into one certain gate on United, and then wehen we flew back out, there was a Southwest 737 parked at the same gate we had come into. Could someone elaborate on how SNA works?

SNA is split into a "north" and "south," and except for the turboprop gates at the south end of the terminal, the rest are common use, but assigned based on that split. Back when I was there for training back in 2000, AA was the one doing the gate assignments, and from what I hear, they still do.

Quoting Lincoln (Reply 5):
ONT seems like it was built with the intention of being common use at some point, but every airline definately has their own gates -- they just all look identical.

I'm sure that was LAWA's ultimate goal, but floundered and ultimately let the airlines do their own thing. There IS at least one joint-use gate, though, which is 409, used by both SWA and AA, with AA as the main user. 413 and 414 are empty, but could be used on demand.
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lincoln
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 1:03 am

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 10):
It's a long time ago in the USA where a government building or facility was built as a showcase. I can only assume that if Washington D.C. were built today, it would consists of concrete block buildings and portable trailers...

Slightly off topic, but I read in the Wall Street Journal a few months (years?) ago that the GSA is trying to break the "government building" stigma and introduce some, er, better looking architecture -- the Federal Courthouse in Cleveland is an example of this -- it is a beautiful building [on the outside at least, never been inside] and certainly doesn't look like what you or I first think of when you hear the word "Federal" or "Post Office" in conjunction with a building.

Add DTW's McNamera terminal as another example of a largely privately controlled terminal that's in beautiful condition...

Lincoln
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SkyexRamper
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 1:07 am

I'd like to pose this question, wouldn't you rather know what gates an airline uses? Not show up at an airport and it's always a different gate. People get lost going to gates as it is, we don't to be changing the gates every hour. From a ramper side of things, I'd hate to be on one end of the airport and then have to go all the way down to the other end to work the next flight. Keep airline operations condensed and things are easier to manage.
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oakjam
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 1:09 am

When I was in Europe I did not like the way gates are assigned; at MUC we landed on on A340 and that had an assigned gate. I was connecting to FCO and when reaching that gate we had to travel a long walk through the terminal; aside from that our Lufthansa flight was out on a parking spot far from the airport. I found this highly inefficient and people really don't like boarding planes not connected to a gate to the actual terminal. We had to ride a bus which was cramped and outside it was cold to board. This system may help reduce delays, but is uncomfortable for passengers. Also the Lufthansa gate at Rome was awful, old terminal, you could hardly read the monitor announcing your flight. For being Europe I found it very third world at FCO. At other US Airport like ATL there are plasma TV's with your announced flight and weather conditions to your travel destinations.
 
dazeflight
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 1:47 am

Quoting Oakjam (Reply 14):
When I was in Europe I did not like the way gates are assigned; at MUC we landed on on A340 and that had an assigned gate. I was connecting to FCO and when reaching that gate we had to travel a long walk through the terminal; aside from that our Lufthansa flight was out on a parking spot far from the airport. I found this highly inefficient and people really don't like boarding planes not connected to a gate to the actual terminal. We had to ride a bus which was cramped and outside it was cold to board. This system may help reduce delays, but is uncomfortable for passengers. Also the Lufthansa gate at Rome was awful, old terminal, you could hardly read the monitor announcing your flight. For being Europe I found it very third world at FCO. At other US Airport like ATL there are plasma TV's with your announced flight and weather conditions to your travel destinations.

The terminal you landed at is LH/* Alliance exclusive. So your long walk and the position of your plane did not have anything to do with the system difference.

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 10):
It's just one more difference between the USA "private enterprise as much as possible" vs. the EU and elsewhere "the state should be in charge of everything" mindset. At some airports, the airlines own the terminals, elsewhere, they have long term leases. There are some airports and terminals which have shared use gates out of necessity, but when possible, it's not that way.

Being owned by the airport companies does not necessarily mean state owned. Especially the huge european airports are mostly run by private companies. The system difference has nothing to do with a different mindeset, but imho the european system is more effective for european needs because there are a lot more airlines serving even smaller airports here.

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flyboy80
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 1:51 am

I feel stupid for asking this, but say in Europe for instance. Doesn't UA have their own UA CS agents working the flights. Just as British, and many other international carriers do in the US? At LHR for instance, I would assume BA has its own CS agents? Is it quite common over there for the ground to be contracted out entirely including the CS?
 
Junction
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 2:00 am

Are all the gates at LHR, CDG and AMS common use? It would seem some would be exclusively for BA, AF and KL at those airports.
 
ikramerica
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 2:10 am

Quoting Dazeflight (Reply 15):
Especially the huge european airports are mostly run by private companies.

Yes, but they were privatized only recently, and are built on the state run mindset.

I'm not trying to paint a huge difference here, as both sides of the pond have similarities in how they operate, but the underlying mindset of how they are run is different.

Then of course you have a place like LAX or NY where they do everything they can to seize control back to the government, as both of these cities are turning back to their earlier days of state run everything...

Quoting Dazeflight (Reply 15):
the european system is more effective for european needs because there are a lot more airlines serving even smaller airports here.

It's not different. Small airports in the USA are run the same way, with common use gates, though even then they do lease out gate space to customers that can justify it. And larger airports with "common use" terminals work that way too, like TBIT at LAX.

The comments above are about large airports where the airport still assigns gates rather than the airline owning their gate space.
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haggis79
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 3:36 am

Quoting Floridaflyboy (Reply 8):
For example, in SLC, before the olympics, DL decorated up their gate areas with olympic signage and commemorative decorations. Under a common-gate agreement, that would have been much more difficult to do.

well, in Europe the airport company would have done the decoration.... where's the difference (from a decorative point of view)?

Quoting SkyexRamper (Reply 13):
I'd like to pose this question, wouldn't you rather know what gates an airline uses? Not show up at an airport and it's always a different gate. People get lost going to gates as it is, we don't to be changing the gates every hour.

well, usually airlines operate out of a certain terminal/concourse, so it's not completely random... and you get your gate information printed onto your boarding pass, along with big screens repeating that information... last-minute gate-changes are rare... so most people seem to find their gate just fine....

Quoting Flyboy80 (Reply 16):
I feel stupid for asking this, but say in Europe for instance. Doesn't UA have their own UA CS agents working the flights. Just as British, and many other international carriers do in the US? At LHR for instance, I would assume BA has its own CS agents? Is it quite common over there for the ground to be contracted out entirely including the CS?

it depends... on the big hubs, airline have their own personnel, on airports with only a few flights a day they usually contract that work out. So in NUE (mid-sized airport in Germany) we have two CS pools: Lufthansa and AirPart... LH does all of it's own flights, of course, as well as some other carriers, which they have a contract with... (DE and SK, for instance). All the rest is done by AirPart, which happens to be a subsidiary of the airport company...

Quoting Junction (Reply 17):
Are all the gates at LHR, CDG and AMS common use? It would seem some would be exclusively for BA, AF and KL at those airports.

I can only speak of CDG: AF operates out of 2A through 2F, but other carriers (mostly Skyteam carriers) use these gates as well (DL 2E, CO 2A, AZ 2F, NW 2C if I'm not mistaken and so on)... so technically, the gates are not exclusively AF...


I think a good point stated above is that in Europe, we just have much more airlines operating into a single airport (independent if it's a large or small mid-sized airport), and many of them only one or two flights a day... plus all those charter carriers, which often operate only a few flights a week into the same airport (Sun Express, Pegasus, Atlas, Onur Air come to mind). So gate-sharing on a large scale may be just a more efficient use of the gates, as you would have many gates empty most of the time otherwise...
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SkyexRamper
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 4:00 am

Also don't forget that there are still US airports that have seperate concourses that have their own security checkpoints, so if you land and had to connect to a gate that you found was in another concourse, you'd have to go through security again.
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apodino
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 5:08 am

Quoting Hawaiian717 (Reply 2):
One advantage of the US system is that it allows airlines to customize the gates to their needs. At many US airports, Delta has installed plasma TVs that display information about the departing flight. I remember it came up as an issue in Honolulu, because Delta wanted to install them but couldn't because HNL actually has common use gates (though airlines tend to stick to the same general areas), so no plasma screens in HNL.

I am not a big fan of this at all. This is nothing more than a big waste of money by DL. This airline is bleeding money, and they just posted another loss, yet they waste money on this, and new uniforms, and those annoying automated boarding announcements. If they want to cut costs, they can start here in my opinion. Airports can create a cute system that can do all these things. The biggest advantage to CUTE is that the airports, not the airlines are maintaining the systems and equipment, which cuts airlines costs, which is why I am surprised that airlines don't push this more in the US.

I have been a huge proponent of CUTE technology. Now one arguement I have heard on here, and it has some merit is that under the current system, the gates are much more consistent with airlines and travellers know what to expect. But you can use the system in a way where the airlines have primary gates, but they are still common use if needed. LAS has this down to perfection. All the gates are common use, but the gates themselves have one airline that is the primary user of the gate, but it could be used by others if need be. For example, A and B gates the primary user is USAirways, though Southwest does use some B gates during US down time, the C gates have a primary user of Southwest, though Aloha operates a couple of flights out there and US uses a couple of C gates for the late night push. On the D gates, United primarily uses 4 gates on the Southwest wing, Delta uses about the Same. On the Southeast wing, Northwest and American have a few gates, and I believe Allegiant has some gates there, and on the Northeast wing, you have JetBlue, Continental, Midwest, and AirTran has primary tennants. But if you didn't have the cute set up, WN wouldn't have access to the B gates, and US wouldn't have access to the C gates for extra flights, meaning they would have to build more gates, which isn't necessary with the current setup, which saves the airport authority money as well, meaning lower landing fees and PFCs. Everybody wins. And you have a pretty good idea where your flight is going out of as well. The only real screw up in my opinion is US and WN should probably be out at D, with everyone else in A, B and C.

Another argument I can make for it would be the JFK issue last week. Now it wouldn't have been a big help here with too many terminals, but lets say we were in ORD, and there had been some United airplanes that had this problem. Now if all the United gates were occupied, there could be some planes sitting in the penalty box for a long time. Assuming it was a snowstorm, there is a good chance that non hub airlines, (CO, NW, US, AC) would have cancelled their ORD ops for the day. Now if these gates in Terminal 2, where UA operates the express flights out of, were common use, United could use those gates to deplane passengers in such an occasion. However, when they are contolled by other airlines, they don't have access to these gates, meaning pax remain stranded on the tarmac for a while with no where to put the passengers.

Another issue is these long term leases that airports sign, which I believe are anti competitive. Lets face it, when you are in an exclusive use agreement, that takes away all the gate space that you can use to attract either new customers or expand. Look at the PHL gate space issue with US and WN that recently happened. It would have been a lot easier had DL and WN been able to share the gate, or if the A east gate that DL is moving into was common use, so that US can run one european flight out of it. Unfortunately thats not the way it works in PHL.

Now obviously this is harder in hub airports to pull off. If DEN had been cute, there would be no debate at all about the gate space that F9 and UA have been fighting over for too long. Places like DTW and MSP are hard by their nature to pull off, and keeping non sky team airlines in a separate terminal from Sky Team seems to be the way to go here, but I still like the idea of cute in case something were to happen. In ATL, with all the flights I would probably designate 1 concourse common use for all airlines save DL, FL, and international carriers. I would make 1 concourse primary for FL, 3 for DL, and E would be common use International. Again, everything would be cute in case of any problems anywhere in the airport. I also like the idea keeping the O and D airlines closest to the terminal and hub airlines a little further for logistical purposes. I would keep DFW exactly as it is right now, except UA would be in E with everyone else. MDW I would go Cute and try to get FL to increase their operations, which they have been unable to do because Airport management gave all the gates to WN, creating almost a fortress hub there for WN.

In ORD what I would do is renovate terminal 2 into an international terminal, and all International Flights would operate out of there, which would work great with the current set up, and you wouldn't have to relocate any planes. I would move all non UA, AA, and international airlines to terminal 5, and run it as a domestic terminal, and would build a common use RJ terminal as well, for Eagle and UEX. Gates would still use CUTE technology, but I would like to see a little decor in there.

CVG would go all cute, all terminals but 3 would be demolished, concourse A would be expanded, transport to the remote terminal would be improved, and jetways would be installed out there. After all, if all the non Comair carriers use jetways in CVG, why can't the hometown airline?

These are just a few things I would do to start, But bottom line is the I can't stand the current system. And think about this. With common use, you can sell advertising space on the Jetway and bring in more revenue, just like BAA does at LGW and LHR.
 
floridaflyboy
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 6:35 am

Quoting Haggis79 (Reply 19):
well, in Europe the airport company would have done the decoration.... where's the difference (from a decorative point of view)?

Because here, it was Delta, not the airport that was sponsoring the Olympics, and therefore, it was only to be the Delta area decorated in DL's specific olympic decorations. That's just one example of why it works here, there are many others.
Good goes around!
 
haggis79
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 7:05 am

Quoting Floridaflyboy (Reply 22):
Quoting Haggis79 (Reply 19):well, in Europe the airport company would have done the decoration.... where's the difference (from a decorative point of view)?
Because here, it was Delta, not the airport that was sponsoring the Olympics, and therefore, it was only to be the Delta area decorated in DL's specific olympic decorations. That's just one example of why it works here, there are many others.

well of course, if you look at it in a "only sponsor is allowed to make specific decorations" way, then yes.... but still, the airport is owned by the City of Salt Lake City, if I'm not mistaken, so I guess they could have decorated the airport (if gates were not to be leased out and therefore it were up to the airport to decide about decorations) as well...

that's at least how it worked in Germany during the recent soccer world cup...
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floridaflyboy
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 7:06 am

Quoting Haggis79 (Reply 23):
well of course, if you look at it in a "only sponsor is allowed to make specific decorations" way, then yes.... but still, the airport is owned by the City of Salt Lake City, if I'm not mistaken, so I guess they could have decorated the airport (if gates were not to be leased out and therefore it were up to the airport to decide about decorations) as well...

Yeah, that's right, and if I recall correctly, the airport did decorate other areas, but Delta wanted their own specific Delta-branded decor in their gate areas.
Good goes around!
 
hawaiian717
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 7:24 am

Quoting Apodino (Reply 21):
I am not a big fan of this at all. This is nothing more than a big waste of money by DL. This airline is bleeding money, and they just posted another loss, yet they waste money on this, and new uniforms, and those annoying automated boarding announcements. If they want to cut costs, they can start here in my opinion.

The gate upgrades with the plasma TVs was a few years ago, when plasma TVs were still pretty new and Delta was sitting on a large pile of cash (much of it from their Priceline.com stock options).
 
CPH757
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 7:37 am

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 10):
It's just one more difference between the USA "private enterprise as much as possible" vs. the EU and elsewhere "the state should be in charge of everything" mindset

As you know this is changing in Europe as well. However, I'm not sure that's the reason for the allocation scheme in Europe. The Europe allocation is certainly more efficient in an airport operation close to it's max capacity, as the airport management can assign gates in order to equalize supply and demand, without taking gate ownership into account.

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 10):
But I also know that in the USA, if the government owns/runs it, it will usually be rundown or at least 15 years out of date.

They actually build marvelous buildings here in Denmark, but on the other hand you have to take into account that our income taxes are 120%  Wink

Quoting Oakjam (Reply 14):
When I was in Europe I did not like the way gates are assigned; at MUC we landed on on A340 and that had an assigned gate. I was connecting to FCO and when reaching that gate we had to travel a long walk through the terminal; aside from that our Lufthansa flight was out on a parking spot far from the airport. I found this highly inefficient and people really don't like boarding planes not connected to a gate to the actual terminal.

As another one mentioned, there is actually a dedicated *A there, maybe just a big airport? Besides that, allocation through common-use can take into account to put same-airline flights next to each other to a wide extent. In Europe we also do it slightly different, as the terminals are divided into Schengen and non-shengen areas. That means that the vast majority of connections (within Schengen) doesn't have to go through a passport control. The border crossings is a problem that you don't have to include in the equation over there  Smile

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 18):
Yes, but they were privatized only recently, and are built on the state run mindset.

I'm not trying to paint a huge difference here, as both sides of the pond have similarities in how they operate, but the underlying mindset of how they are run is different.

You're just envious of our tax rates :p (I won't contradict you as long as Suvarnabhumi stands (which might not be for too long))

Quoting Floridaflyboy (Reply 22):
Because here, it was Delta, not the airport that was sponsoring the Olympics, and therefore, it was only to be the Delta area decorated in DL's specific olympic decorations. That's just one example of why it works here, there are many others.

Well, in my mind, the decoration doesn't matter that much. I really enjoy great architecture and beautiful design, but I think the company building the airport can take charge of this. Whether the terminals are homogeneous or not, doesn't matter.
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floridaflyboy
Posts: 1496
Joined: Sat Jun 03, 2006 3:26 pm

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 7:40 am

Quoting CPH757 (Reply 26):
Well, in my mind, the decoration doesn't matter that much. I really enjoy great architecture and beautiful design, but I think the company building the airport can take charge of this. Whether the terminals are homogeneous or not, doesn't matter.

The decoration thing is just ONE example of why it's nice to have assigned gates. I know there are arguments for both. However, the individual airlines having individual gates here in the U.S. just seems to work.
Good goes around!
 
burnsie28
Posts: 5027
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 7:58 am

Quoting Haggis79 (Reply 19):
where's the difference (from a decorative point of view)?

When they have Delta logos all over it.

Quoting Haggis79 (Reply 19):
NW 2C if I'm not mistaken and so on)...

NW is at 2E.


CUTE gates are worthless in the US, many airlines have their own people, and own gate ticket counters, it also allows airlines to have systems that are most efficient for them, since each airline has their own systems. Also it allows airlines to know where they are at all times instead of going, oh, well thats not anywhere near our equipment and such. Having assigned gates also allows things like Platinum lines, again own ticket counters, advertisements, logos and other marketing tools, keeps customers familiar with where they are, could you imagine a place like LAX where say someone was flying NW and it was one day in terminal two, then all of a sudden you show up and its in Terminal 4 or something to that effect. A lot of airlines also pay for most of the things in airports, IE NW at MSP will be fitting the bill eventually for its expansion of concourse H and such. DTW was designed and put in place by NW. Hubs would be a big problem if you have all your planes scattered all over, and say have at DTW, at NW's place and then all of a sudden under CUTE then you would through an NW flight to smith and they don't have their own facilities over there and such. CUTE is just worthless.
 
MCOflyer
Posts: 7069
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2006 5:51 am

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 8:03 am

US has thier own set of gates at MCO in Terminal B west side. I've never seen another airlines a/c parked there unless we codeshared/ or had an alliance with them.

MCOflyer
Never be afraid to stand up for who you are.
 
haggis79
Posts: 535
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2006 8:05 pm

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 8:05 am

Quoting Burnsie28 (Reply 28):
CUTE is just worthless.

well I wouldn't say it's worthless, its just different...

Quoting Burnsie28 (Reply 28):
Also it allows airlines to know where they are at all times instead of going, oh, well thats not anywhere near our equipment and such.

well, in Europe the equipment is owned by the handlers, not the airlines...

Quoting Burnsie28 (Reply 28):
Having assigned gates also allows things like Platinum lines, again own ticket counters, advertisements, logos and other marketing tools,

works perfectly in Europe with CUTE as well...

Quoting Burnsie28 (Reply 28):
ould you imagine a place like LAX where say someone was flying NW and it was one day in terminal two, then all of a sudden you show up and its in Terminal 4 or something to that effect.

well, as I said, usually you will have same airline - same terminal.... just not necessarily same airline - same gate...
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HikesWithEyes
Posts: 623
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 8:10 am

Quoting Acidradio (Reply 3):
If all of your gates are located together, rather then spread apart, it makes it easier for the ramp workers to move between flights, which makes them more efficient and makes it easier to share ground equipment. In the event of a rebooking or aircraft swap, passengers only have to walk a short distance, not across the whole airport.

 checkmark 

Quoting Haggis79 (Reply 19):
well, in Europe the airport company would have done the decoration.... where's the difference (from a decorative point of view)?

It's called branding.
First, benzene in my Perrier, and now this!
 
apodino
Posts: 3027
Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2005 2:11 am

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 8:32 am

Quoting Burnsie28 (Reply 28):
CUTE gates are worthless in the US, many airlines have their own people, and own gate ticket counters, it also allows airlines to have systems that are most efficient for them, since each airline has their own systems. Also it allows airlines to know where they are at all times instead of going, oh, well thats not anywhere near our equipment and such. Having assigned gates also allows things like Platinum lines, again own ticket counters, advertisements, logos and other marketing tools, keeps customers familiar with where they are, could you imagine a place like LAX where say someone was flying NW and it was one day in terminal two, then all of a sudden you show up and its in Terminal 4 or something to that effect. A lot of airlines also pay for most of the things in airports, IE NW at MSP will be fitting the bill eventually for its expansion of concourse H and such. DTW was designed and put in place by NW. Hubs would be a big problem if you have all your planes scattered all over, and say have at DTW, at NW's place and then all of a sudden under CUTE then you would through an NW flight to smith and they don't have their own facilities over there and such. CUTE is just worthless.

As Mr. Spock would say your argument is totally Illogical and you are using scare tactics based on extreme situations that will never happen. You didn't read my post, which suggested how you make this work. LAS has made this work for almost the past decade.

And given the financial situation of most airlines in this country, if there are things they don't have to foot the bill for, it can only help them. And you want airlines to foot the bills for more expansion, when all it will do will add to the price of your ticket and drive them into chapter 11 again.

The way I proposed, was the was LAS does, where the gates are assigned, but no airline has exclusive use of any gate in the airport. Ticket counter positions are consistent, and they allow lines for elites and first class lines and stuff like that. What CUTE does is allow for a situation, lets say NW goes belly up tommorrow (not going to happen but it will demonstrate my point). If NW had all their own equipment in place, then it would all have to be replaced, and a new airline would have to put its own systems in there. If you have cute, another airline could move in the next day without having to move anything, which is much more efficient for all parties.

And about different computer systems. Most of the systems are windows based these days. All you have to do is create icons on a desktop for different systems, i.e. Apollo, Sabre, Shares, etc. With each airline employee having its own sign on, you can link the systems to the sign on. So if its a US employee logging on, the desktop would have a shares icon, if its a united, FastAir/Apollo. My computer at work can run both sabre and shares at the same time for example. The bottom line is that all computers can accomodate all airline systems. The only downside to CUTE is that I have heard that you can't access CASS from cute, which I am not buying, but oh well.

And if you haven't noticed, in LAS, all the airlines have their own logos and signage at their ticket counters. And the gate displays display the Airline logo on the backdrop for whatever airline is using it.


And let me ask you this Burnsie? LGW is all CUTE. Have you ever arrived on a DL flight in the South Terminal, or an AA flight, or been on a VS or CO flight that used the North terminal? Airports that run this, do an excellent job of keeping airlines in the same sport for most of the time.

Your argument doesn't make sense at all. CUTE can work in the US. I stand by what I said.
 
YLWbased
Posts: 834
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 8:33 am

Gate 1-5 belongs to CX @ HKG, but i dunno about the rest.
Hong Kong is not China. Not better or worse, just different.
 
CPH757
Posts: 652
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RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 8:45 am

Quoting YLWbased (Reply 33):
Gate 1-5 belongs to CX @ HKG, but i dunno about the rest.

I would think that these are still owned by HKIA, but they seem to allocate very efficient. For instance, KL always seemed to use gate 33 when I stayed there. UA was always far out in the sixties, BA, MU always around 15-21 etc.

This makes up for a common-use scheme, as it is very flexible, with only one entity to allocate. It can make some economical distortion, but none the less, it's the operators interest to have a s few empty gates as possible.
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floridaflyboy
Posts: 1496
Joined: Sat Jun 03, 2006 3:26 pm

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 9:55 am

Quoting Haggis79 (Reply 30):
well I wouldn't say it's worthless, its just different...



Quoting Haggis79 (Reply 30):
well, in Europe the equipment is owned by the handlers, not the airlines...



Quoting Haggis79 (Reply 30):
works perfectly in Europe with CUTE as well...

Just because something works well in Europe does NOT mean it will work well in the United States. Our system is set up where the airlines own their own equipment. There are no handling companies at most airports, and therefore the equipment and the people are part of the individual airline. The way the airlines have it set up right now is what works and is how it is likely going to stay for the forseeable future, seeing as there is no noticeable benefit to changing it right now.

Quoting HikesWithEyes (Reply 31):
It's called branding.

Exactly.
Good goes around!
 
RichPhitzwell
Posts: 1285
Joined: Mon Jul 24, 2006 5:19 am

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 10:26 am

If in Europe gates are common use...how does the devi, err i meen Ryanair not have bridges?
Nonav.com kinda like Whiners except the lights are on and the pimps been paid
 
haggis79
Posts: 535
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2006 8:05 pm

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 10:27 am

Quoting Floridaflyboy (Reply 35):
Just because something works well in Europe does NOT mean it will work well in the United States. Our system is set up where the airlines own their own equipment. There are no handling companies at most airports, and therefore the equipment and the people are part of the individual airline. The way the airlines have it set up right now is what works and is how it is likely going to stay for the forseeable future, seeing as there is no noticeable benefit to changing it right now.

tell me where I said that this system is gonna work well in the US? I asked for why it is set up the way it is and I objected against Burnsie28 stating that everything different from the system he's used to is "just worthless". I was not trying to imply that the US should change their system right now....
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deltadude
Posts: 116
Joined: Wed Sep 08, 2004 11:53 pm

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The

Sat Mar 03, 2007 10:28 am

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 10):
t's a long time ago in the USA where a government building or facility was built as a showcase. I can only assume that if Washington D.C. were built today, it would consists of concrete block buildings and portable trailers...

Have you ever seen the CDC in Atlanta? The campus is beautiful with the newest building built in the last two years.

http://www.cdc.gov/about/facilities.htm

The government doesn't have a problem spending our money on expensive architecture.
 
YULWinterSkies
Posts: 1266
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2005 11:42 pm

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 10:42 am

Quoting Skyexramper (Reply 20):
Also don't forget that there are still US airports that have seperate concourses that have their own security checkpoints, so if you land and had to connect to a gate that you found was in another concourse, you'd have to go through security again.

Although they may not be called "concourse" but rather terminal, if you connect at CDG or ZRH and change terminal you have to go through security again, even when arriving from a domestic flight.

Instead, I've always found odd that you can go from flight to flight within the USA without going again through security. Different countries, different cultures, i guess.... ATL is amazing for that, you take the train, and you're still within the same restricted area! Considering how immense this airport is (ATL and others too), that's a lot of trust that the authorities have to have on the system, which cannot be unrelated to how strict security checks in the US can sometimes be...
When I doubt... go running!
 
teneriffe77
Posts: 296
Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2006 11:00 am

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 10:46 am

I know here in SYR CUTE would be a problem because there are 2 different security checkpoints each oen servinga different concoruse (the concourses are parrallel to each other. Up until the 1990's there was only one but the distance to and from the landisde part was a bit long (by our standards)was long (this was when there was one chekin in area and one baggae claim). When the airport was remodeled, this was changed so that each concoruse had it's own baggage claim, checkin, and security check point. Having each airline have it's own set of gates avoids the confusion of a person accidentallly going to the wrong gate and having to back through security to get to the right gate and when someone is coming to ameet a perosn they know where to wait.
 
apodino
Posts: 3027
Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2005 2:11 am

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 11:26 am

Truthfully, I am not convinced that the current system is working well in the US. Let me cite some examples of where I think they system has broken down.

The PHL mess recently. It would have been much easier to solve the problem on gates if CUTE were in place.

LAX: Airlines are tied to gates they rarely use (I.E. Terminal 6), and thus shut out other airlines looking to serve the airport.

DEN: If they had cute at al the gates out there, do you think we would ever have had one thread concerning F9 being screwed by UA on gate space out there?

DFW: As much as I hate to admit it, B should be all AA, but UA won't move. I think they would have moved much more easily with CUTE, since their equipment would probably not have had to be moved.

MDW: Airtran wants to expand, but can't because of the WN monopoly. This may also affect MKE with the rumored merger with YX.

ORD: B6 had a hard time with gate space when starting because of none available, and airlines tied to underutilized gates in the E concourse. Only thing that helped was the US merger.

EWR: CO using gates in A that they don't really need, and it is making it difficult for anybody else to start service (The blessing in disguise is that there is so much congestion, more service would only add to delays)
 
commavia
Posts: 9651
Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2005 2:30 am

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The

Sat Mar 03, 2007 12:07 pm

The two systems (exclusive use/preferential use vs. common use) both have their pros and cons ...

Certainly, I don't think anyone could reasonably argue that common use isn't more efficient, at least in most cases. It allows the airport to move flights around and utilize gates to their fullest potential throughout the day, without regard for peak travel periods and the bank schedule of an airline's hub. Common use systems are also generally less expensive for the airports, and thus the airlines, and thus the airlines' passengers who ultimately pay the PFCs -- because they are able to utilize the same (or often fewer resources) to handle the same throughput of flights in a given day, they can pass those savings onto consumers and the airport's users (airlines).

There are other situations, however, were exclusive and/or preferential use systems are better, at least in my view. Many people outside of the U.S. don't like nor understand the need for the exclusive use gate utilization systems in place at many (if not most) major American airports, but the reality -- at least from my experience -- is that in certain situations, there are some substantial benefits to giving airlines, rather than airports, more control.

First and foremost, exclusive/preferential use gate lease agreements drive investment in infrastructure. In many major U.S. airports where development is currently underway, airlines are footing a good portion of the bill. This is clearly much different from the European model, where airports tend to be government-owned and thus any expansion or development is government-initiated and government-financed. However, in many cases, the necessary (and often long overdue) improvements made at U.S. airports would simply not be possible without airlines' support, and as such, airlines have a reasonable expectation that if they are paying for a new terminal/concourse/expansion/etc., they should have some control. In many cases (United's T1 at O'Hare, American's T4 at LAX, Continentals North Terminal at EWR, etc.) these airlines would never, ever even consider sinking billions into facilities at these major hubs unless the airport guaranteed them they would benefit from the new infrastructure, and not their competitors. That's a good thing.

Secondly, exclusive/preferential use is also helpful in hub situations and in large stations where a specific airline or airlines have a large station. In many cities, these airlines need a large section of gates that they control in order to give them maximum operational flexibility during off-schedule operations. I myself have numerous times experienced flying at hub airports with airlines like AA, Continental, Delta, Southwest, etc. where the airline's complete control of the terminal facilities gave them enormous flexiblity to shift flights from gate to gate and move up different aircraft sitting at different gates in order to try and get as many flights out as possible as close to schedule as possible. This simply couldn't happen if the airlines weren't able to control and instantaneously operationalize gates at a moment's notice. I say that only because I have also seen the opposite at European and Asian airports, when airlines struggling to recover from schedule disruptions were handicapped by capacity constrictions due to airport control of gates and other airlines occupying gates the hub carrier needed. Not good.

Finally, and this is just a personal convenience thing, albeit a maddening one for many Americans, is that when airlines control their own gates at major hub airports, it gives them a much better ability to plan flights and gate usage. While flights very often change gates before departure time, airlines in the U.S. are generally able to plan with a reasonable level of certainy where flights will be leaving from. Contrast this to Europe, for example, where it's basically a waiting and guessing game. I cannot even remember how many times I have been sitting in the departure lounge at Gatwick, Heathrow, Frankfurt, Barcelona, Madrid, etc., and on and on, waiting until 15 minutes before a flight is scheduled to depart for the damn departure gate to come up on the monitors. Then there is the inevitable ensuing mad dash by 150-400 annoyed passengers to their departure gate to try and board for an ontime departure. It's just annoying, and virtually never happens in the U.S.

The obvious downside to exclusive/preferential agreements, of course, is that they do admittedly give airlines a great ability to dominate certain markets and keep competition out. Airlines have sometimes manipulated their contracts in order to keep out competitors by underutilizing gates under lease or letting gates sit idle just so competitors couldn't use them. That is something airports have to watch for, and craft lease contracts around, but it shouldn't completely wipe out the positives of exclusive use agreements either.

I think the bottom line, in my mind, is that their is a time and a place for both systems. In smaller cities and airports, or at outstations without a predominant airline or a huge number of flights, exclusive use agreements seem inefficient and unrealistic given market conditions, and common use gates seems a much more productive way to utilize scarce gate capacity. But at major hubs and stations, where a single airline or a small number of airlines have major operations requiring huge gate capacity and infrastructure, I think there is definitely a huge argument to be made for exclusive use agreements, or at least hybrid agreements like preferential use agreements described earlier in the thread.

Such a long reply, I know, I know, and I'm sorry!  Smile
 
hiflyer
Posts: 1270
Joined: Wed Nov 24, 2004 1:38 am

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 12:27 pm

CUTE...by SITA...and MUSE by Arinc charges the carriers by use....generally for a mid to large operation it is far more expensive to run CUTE or MUSE than it is to have your own IT. Secondly CUTE/MUSE normally only carries the pax system,...carriers then have to still run their own ops and mtc data drops creating a further expense. Next maintenance...neither SITA or ARINC have been the world's fastest at getting broken equipment fixed. Lastly compatibility...some carriers do more in some areas than others and neither CUTE/MUSE can supply the structure they need plus 'bugs' always...and I mean always...pop up getting your airline specific data thru their system.

If you are running 1-2 flts a day and vendoring out your customer service...CUTE/MUSE will work. Bigger than that and the problems start...however...yes airports are going CUTE/MUSE but not exactly for what you think. Take MIA...they lost Air Florida...then Eastern....then Pan Am...then United (not completely but close). Each time gates and counter went unused until a new tenant signed in and installed their IT. MIA is now pretty much CUTE...though I think AA was resisting strongly. FLL...Terminal 4 is common use.

No one mentioned one big reason why gates do not jump that much...even at CUTE/MUSE stations. Ground Equipment. Unless the entire ramp is vendored out to a common support company each carrier wants set aside gate space for their equipment (and for their ops and mtc and such).
 
CXfirst
Posts: 2875
Joined: Tue Jan 30, 2007 8:13 pm

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 12:43 pm

1. So they can have ad space by the gate.

2. If their flight is delayed, and takes up a gate position for their incoming flights, they cannot blame it on other carriers. In Europe I frequently see a flight come in and wait for another carrier to leave.

3. Can give passengers a more detailed explanation to their gate (including time), less people coming late and holding up the flights.

-CXfirst
 
HawaiianHobo
Posts: 148
Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2004 2:33 pm

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 12:59 pm

Quoting Hawaiian717 (Reply 2):
so no plasma screens in HNL

Was this just for Delta? Doesn't Hawaiian have plasmas at their gates or am I just dreaming (I 'm probably thinking of Lihue)?

I know you can find WAAAY too many out of date tube TV monitors all over HNL, many of which are in dire need of replacement.
 airplane 

-J
...
 
ha763
Posts: 3168
Joined: Mon Jan 06, 2003 5:36 pm

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 1:19 pm

HNL uses CUTE, but not all airlines can use every single gate. It can be set up to allow an airline to use only certain gates. For example, the airline I work for at HNL, is hooked up so that we can use gates 17-34 with no problem. We are not hooked up to gates 6-16.

Quoting Hawaiian717 (Reply 2):
so no plasma screens in HNL.

Not for DL, but HNL is starting to replace the CRT tv's, at least in the Ewa Concourse gates, with LCD screens. They even have an LCD screen set up above the jetway corridor at gate 23. I just happened to be crusing at the gate waiting for a flight and noticed the new tv's. I'm not sure what it's for, but doesn't seem like its for watching tv since the seats at the gate are perpendicular to the screen.
 
jbernie
Posts: 206
Joined: Wed Jan 10, 2007 10:09 am

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 1:46 pm

SYD domestic has two "terminals", one for Qantas and I guess JetStar/QantasLink and another for Virgin Blue that used to be Ansett. It has been a long time since I have been there for Domestic travel so I am not sure how the smaller airlines like REX fit in.

The best system depends on who owns/runs the airport and how many airlines use it and in what way.

For DEN at DIA, you have a major hub for United and Frontier and now Southwest moving in. Given United uses DEN as a transit point it is most logical for them to have all of Concourse B to themselves as it makes the plane changing process so much easier for the passengers. No need to go down to the train to go to Concourse C, ie walk up to two hundred yards, go down two sets of escalators, wait for train, travel on train to desired Concourse, and then go up two escalators and walk up to two hundred yards to get to the next plane....and do it in 15 minutes with time to spare  Smile Smile

If an airpoirt is more of a terminating point or a transition from internation to domestic (or reverse) flights then a less structured system can work better. I guess MIA, LAX, SFO, JFK could fall into this category. As you would be needing to clear customs, security etc etc between the flights anyway in most cases, esp for the international to domestic transition.

Of course then there is that factor of $$$$. If an airline is spending serious $$$ to build a terminal and fit it out then they will want to make sure they get the most use of what the built.

One last factor. Frequent Flyer Lounges. The more terminals/concourses an airport has the more difficult it can be for your FF to use a lounge if their departure gate is potentially a few terminals away when gates are randomly assigned. If you have all your gates together you can provide a larger more enjoyable experience, as opposed to either having multiple lounges spread out or FF having less time to use the facilities.

I would guess that the more low cost carriers without FF programs you have, the more random the gate assignments can be as the passengers are there to just fly and you dont need/feel oblidged to provide a rest area.
 
airportplan
Posts: 319
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2004 12:36 am

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sat Mar 03, 2007 6:40 pm

I think that Commavia gave the best most detailed explanation above of why most US airports use exclusive use/preferential use vs. common use. Its all about who pays to construct or renovate the terminals.
 
jbernie
Posts: 206
Joined: Wed Jan 10, 2007 10:09 am

RE: Why Gates Assigned To Specific Airlines In The US?

Sun Mar 04, 2007 7:29 am

Quoting Commavia (Reply 42):
Such a long reply, I know, I know, and I'm sorry!

Well it isn't something that can be answered in 20 words or less and you provided a well rounded summary for both options. Well worth the read.

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