CV990
Topic Author
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Why AF Flies To IAH?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:14 pm

Hi!

This is just a mere curious question, why AF have been flying for many years to IAH? Is there any particular reason for french/us citizens to fly there?
Regards
CV990, the Maserati of the skies!
 
TYCOON
Posts: 436
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:18 pm

Houston is one of the largest US cities and one of the global centres of the oil industry. AF flies alot of IAH traffic thru their CDG hub onto places such as Angola, Gabon and the Middle East.
I have been in the AF lounge at CDG a number of times when a group of transiting Texans sat next to me. They were either on their way out or on their way back to Houston from one of the oil producing nations of Africa and the Middle East.
The main French banks all have branches in Houston which is also an indication of the importance Houston has.
 
as739x
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:29 pm

As Tycoon said, Houston is a very surprisingly diverse city. My fiancee is there and I frequent Houston monthly and was very surprised. The oil connection adding to that makes IAH a desirable city for AF amongst other int'l carrier with more to come I'd expect.

ASSFO
"Some pilots avoid storm cells and some play connect the dots!"
 
aa1818
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:37 pm

Also it is the largest hub of one of it's Sky Team partners, CO. From IAH, French AF customers can connect onto a CO flight to many of the American, Latin American and Caribbean destinations not served by AF directly. I'm guessing it comes down to the old hub to hub philosophy.

AA1818
“The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever to be able to do it.” J.M. Barrie (Peter Pan)
 
IAD380
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:52 pm

Both AF and KL fly to IAH. Nowadays, IAH seems to be a Skyteam fortress served by AF, CO, KL, and perhaps soon by KE. However, I remember reading that both AF and KL have been flying to IAH continuously since the 1950s. Originally, IAH may have been a stopover on flights from Europe to MEX.
 
LHStarAlliance
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:52 pm

Quoting CV990 (Thread starter):

1 word : OIL
Boycott The Olympic Games In Beijing !
 
IAHFLYR
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:56 pm

Quoting AA1818 (Reply 3):
I'm guessing it comes down to the old hub to hub philosophy.

But as the thread starter mentioned, AF has been a staple at IAH for some time.......even though the SkyTeam HUB might now be in place with CO it wasn't always the case.

Quoting AS739X (Reply 2):
Houston is a very surprisingly diverse city

Certainly is, and keep that Grey Goose inbound!  Smile
Any views shared are strictly my own and do not a represent those of any former employer.
 
CV990
Topic Author
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 10:06 pm

Hi!

Thanks a lot all of you...I didn't expect to have such a wide panel of answers but I now fully understand that!!!
regards
CV990, the Maserati of the skies!
 
shanderawx
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 3:28 am

The French presence here in Houston never ceases to amaze me. I grew up in San Antonio where it iwas unusual to hear French in public. Here there are over 80 French companies who have Houston branches, my church has a French Mass once a month, the local Alliance Francaise has been a mainstay of the culture scene here for at least 30 years, and between CO and AF there are 3-4 flights to Paris daily. The de Menil family bequeathed an incredible cultural gift to the city with the Menil Museum (always open free to the public), a museum that was the first work by architectural Pritzker Prize winner Renzo Piano in the United States. It is easy to maintain or further develop French language skills here (the Alliance has 2 French literature circles, for example). The local consulate keeps a home for the consul in River Oaks.
All in all, the relations between France and Houston are surprisingly strong and, yes, oil is the reason, but the spinoff has been superb.
 
atct
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 5:20 am

Yea Houston seems to get just a little oil-induced traffic :P

Regarding all who fly here, no one mentioned the new Emirates N/S service to DXB starting in December. (and we're still waiting on Korean Air and Air India to be official whens/hows etc.) Also our cargo services here are BOOMING. It seems like every month we get a new cargo carrier or established carriers increasing service.

Having moved here in the past year, its actually a much larger city than I ever expected. I never knew it was the 4th largest in the Country.

ATCT
Hook 'em Horns
(Sorry LT-AWACS, im stealing your line)
Trikes are for kids!
 
thomasphoto60
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 6:18 am

You know when I first read CV 990's question, I was a little insulted. However after sitting back and dissecting the question, I suppose I can understand what he is asking. Let's face it, unless you do a lot of business or have family here, Houston barely registers, as it is simply not a city that gets a lot of attention. What little press Houston does get from the national or int'l media is often far from flattering. Most outside of Texas who are not familiar with the state, will often see Dallas as being the main port of entry (in terms of air service), in addition they tend to see Dallas as the state's largest city (yes, I know that the DFW MSA is some 500k+ larger than that of Houston's) as well as the state's economic powerhouse.

Like many newcomers to Texas (some 12 years here, I suppose I am a naturalized Texan at this point), I had many misgivings about making Texas and particular Houston my home. And while it took some time, I have really learned to love H-Town (despite the oppressive summer heat and humidity) and would be hard pressed to leave. In that short period of time I have seen the city move (and continuing to transform itself) from regional metro area into a respectable center of international commerce, trade, finance, medicine, space exploration and of course energy, in addition to a respectable diplomatic corp. While Houston will never rival the likes of an LA or NYC, in terms of notoriety, I sincerely believe that Houston will in some 10-20 years will rival the likes of Chicago in the "respectable" category. That said, the powers that be at this stage simply do a really piss-poor job of selling the city. Until such time I am afraid that Houston will always be seen as a 2nd tier city, even in Texas (by non-Texans and many Dallasites). As much as it pains me to say, perhaps it is time that Houston takes a page from Dallas's play book and learn where Dallas is succeeding and Houston is not.

Just my .02.

Thomas

[Edited 2007-04-30 23:23:59]
"Show me the Braniffs"
 
drerx7
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 6:38 am

You know Thomas--I think that our city has rounded the corner -- I travel alot...and it seems more and more people outside of TX and the US know much more about Houston than what I thought. Dallas has 'stagnated' somewhat in that noteriety area since 'Dallas' went off air. I liken that to the city's hiphop industry which mentions Houston and Texas in every song (hip hop is the core of popular culture now hate it or love it) Beyonce etc, then there is the whole Katrina thing that put it at the forefront of media/followed up by Rita (largest evacuation in U.S. History, then there is Enron/Halliburton and all, SuperBowl, MLB and NBA All-Star Games. So I say that to say Houston had a lot of media grabbing instances that put it at the forefront. Surprisingly, I maybe find 1 person out of 10 outside of Houston that doesnt like it...unless I go up to that roAAdstop on I45.  Wink
Third Coast born, means I'm Texas raised
 
Lemurs
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 6:49 am

You know, I was in Houston for business a few months ago (visiting a company that does business in drilling, of course) and I stayed at the Sofitel there near IAH. When I *saw* there was a Sofitel there, I was sort of shocked. I know Houston is a big city, but among upscale hotel chains, Sofitel has a very limited pentration in this country. San Fran, NY, Chicago, Miami, LA...they're in the big international tourist markets, places with cachet and plenty of flights to and from CDG, where their brand carries a ton more weight. (It's virtually unknown here in the US) Houston is not the place I expected to find one, as it's not the kind of upscale leisure market I would have associated with the brand.

Now, seeing that there's a large cultural and travel connection, it makes a TON more sense.
There are 10 kinds of people in the world; those who understand binary, and those that don't.
 
IAHFLYR
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 7:07 am

WOW those direct deposits into the bank accounts of Thomasphoto60, Drerx7, and Lemurs really paid off for some nice publicity and comments for my home for the last 25 years.....ATCT you're a paid employee so you don't get that direct deposit thing ! Smile

Nicely done folks......

Quoting Lemurs (Reply 12):
When I *saw* there was a Sofitel there, I was sort of shocked. I know Houston is a big city, but among upscale hotel chains, Sofitel has a very limited pentration in this country

Yes it has been a long time resident of that location, I can't remember if it was there when I moved here but if not way back when very soon afterwards.
Any views shared are strictly my own and do not a represent those of any former employer.
 
jfk777
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 7:18 am

Air France and KLM have been part of teh Houston fabric way before Continental got big at IAH. Remember Continental was run from Los Angeles by BOB SIX for years until Frank Lorenzo, of Eastern Fame( before Eastern), merged it into Texas Air , moved the headquarters and hub to Houston. The rest as they say is history... a terribly sad one.
 
CV990
Topic Author
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 7:19 am

Hi!

The last thing I wanted was to insult any friends from Houston!!! But you must agree, IAH can be a very common place to fly from any US place, I would expect to see AF or any other airline to fly to places like IAD, ORD, BOS, MIA...even DEN or PHX is not so common but you have BA and LH flying there too, but IAH was quite of interesting...and AF??? Even more!!! But let me ask you something, do we have any other foreign airlines flying to IAH or just AF?
regards
CV990, the Maserati of the skies!
 
n844aa
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 7:24 am

Quoting CV990 (Reply 15):
But let me ask you something, do we have any other foreign airlines flying to IAH or just AF?

Tons. Way more than DFW, for example (which is a very comparable airport in a lot of ways serving a fairly comparable metro area.) I can't give a very good accounting off the top of my head, but there are several people in this thread who will do an excellent job of that, so I'll leave it to them.  Wink
New airplanes, new employees, low fares, all touchy-feely ... all of them are losers. -Gordon Bethune
 
Chugach
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 7:32 am

Quoting CV990 (Reply 15):
But let me ask you something, do we have any other foreign airlines flying to IAH or just AF?
regards

BA, KL, CI, AC, either AM or MX (can't remember), I believe TACA, among many others.
GO ROCKETS
 
thomasphoto60
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 8:05 am

Quoting CV990 (Reply 15):
The last thing I wanted was to insult any friends from Houston!!!

Hey CV990,

No insult taken despite my comment.

Checkout the websites linked below for some insight on Houston's aviation scene.

http://www.fly2houston.com/home

http://www.houstonspotters.net/

Thomas
"Show me the Braniffs"
 
cba
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 8:26 am

Quoting IAD380 (Reply 4):
IAH seems to be a Skyteam fortress served by AF, CO

 checmark 

Quoting IAD380 (Reply 4):
both AF and KL have been flying to IAH continuously since the 1950s

 checkmark 

BA, LH, KL and AF have always been the 4 staples of international service. I miss the old days where they all used to bring in 747's, but our service isn't doing so badly right now. BA is sticking with 2 daily 777's to LGW, and we're likely to see a 744 when IAH-LHR service begins. LH has upgraded to the A346, and IIRC plans to bring in the 744 this summer to FRA. KL has always been consistent with the 744 combi, and AF is working with a daily 772 with an additional 332 frequency a few days a week. They were flying the 77W here not too long ago. The fact that these four carriers are making good money flying to IAH (as well as CO's IAH-CDG/LGW/AMS traffic) shows that there is a big market for intl. traffic here. Now if only we could se some more Asia service... I'm waiting for CO's 787's to arrive.

Quoting IAHFLYR (Reply 6):
Certainly is, and keep that Grey Goose inbound! Smile

 checkmark  checkmark  checkmark 

Quoting Thomasphoto60 (Reply 10):
the powers that be at this stage simply do a really piss-poor job of selling the city.

 checkmark 

Sad but true. They really need to do a better job of developing the public transit here. The first light rail line is good, but they really need to speed up the process of expanding the network. So many people are stuck in the past and against it though, even though traffic and highway problems only continue to get worse. It's amazing to me that there's no commuter rail service from Downtown or the Galleria to places like Sugar Land, Katy, Cyprus, etc, as driving out there is pure hell!
 
Lemurs
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 8:43 am

Quoting IAHFLYR (Reply 13):
WOW those direct deposits into the bank accounts of Thomasphoto60, Drerx7, and Lemurs really paid off for some nice publicity and comments for my home for the last 25 years

You'll probably want to send a stop-payment to me, because I still really don't like Houston much.  Smile The sprawl, the weather, the general...unremarkable nature of it. I don't hate it, but I can't find a single reason to like it, let alone love it. I'm just kinda "meh" about it. Other than Terminal E and the fantastic PC there of course.  Smile

In fact, I was talking with some other flyers in the PC during that same trip, and it hit me the best way to summarize how unremarkable Houston is to most of the country: For the life of us, including multiple life-long Houston residences, (flyers, bartenders, etc) not one of us could think of a song that had to do with singing the praises of Houston. There are songs about tons of cities, big and small, in the US, but Houston has nothing. At least songs that have serious social recognition. If you have one that I've overlooked, I'd be glad to hear it. I'd like to go back and tell the bartenders at the PC about it.  Smile

(Btw, I recognize that Houston has a good music scene...but even there it's overshadowed by the incredible music scene in Austin just a short hop away...)
There are 10 kinds of people in the world; those who understand binary, and those that don't.
 
IAHFLYR
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 8:49 am

Quoting Lemurs (Reply 20):
You'll probably want to send a stop-payment to me, because I still really don't like Houston much

It has been stopped and your future rooms at the Sofitel are now in the basement!  Big grin Or on the Beltway during a nice steamy summer afternoon thunderstorm while you're listening to the Austin rad........................................oh the power just went out and your radio has no batteries, but fear not, you can wade across the highway in the 4 ft of water from that storm and get more!  box 

Hey thanks for coming totally clean.....and ya know what it doesn't matter as someone likes it or these houses wouldn't be selling around here like they're the only homes in the state.
Any views shared are strictly my own and do not a represent those of any former employer.
 
Mike89406
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 8:58 am

Quoting CV990 (Thread starter):
Hi!

This is just a mere curious question, why AF have been flying for many years to IAH? Is there any particular reason for french/us citizens to fly there?
Regards

In addition to the aforementioned reasons IAH is The #4 most populated city in the US without counting the metro or suburban population, and its closeness to Latin America the Gulf coast, and Carribean makes it the ideal location for a hub in that area thus increasing the desirable place for foreign carriers.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...United_States_cities_by_population

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_metropolitan_areas_by_population

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Largest...metropolitan_areas_in_the_Americas

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_metropolitan_areas
 
nateDAL
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 9:01 am

Quoting Lemurs (Reply 20):
For the life of us, including multiple life-long Houston residences, (flyers, bartenders, etc) not one of us could think of a song that had to do with singing the praises of Houston.

Dean Martin - "Houston"

I love Houston, but I am a native. Houston is a city that visitors usually just don't understand. However, people that either are from Houston or move there typically love it and won't leave. It is a great city that really grows on you.
Set Love Free
 
drerx7
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 9:04 am

Quoting Lemurs (Reply 20):
At least songs that have serious social recognition. If you have one that I've overlooked, I'd be glad to hear it. I'd like to go back and tell the bartenders at the PC about it. Smile

LOL - There are a lot of hip hop songs that mention Houston in them. "Now what yall know about them Texas boyz..."

"H-Toooown, home of two drop top arenas...."
"Welcome to the city of game, piece and chain and swang, pop trunk and bang where they show no shame, I'm out that down south city where they show no pity - candy paint looking pretty making haters feel $*#!!y - See I'm a lone star baller and a chop shop crawler - went from a BMX to a GS Lex, born and raised in Houston, Tex where they barre no plex..

If you need a translation.....

Nowadays its the hiphop industry that drives popular culture -- all those national events have a major hip hop component...now whether or not a.netters like hip hop...thats another thing LOL.

my personal motto ---> 3rd Coast Born Means I'm Texas Raised

Oh and can't forget about the Med Center and shopping allure to foreign carriers. Not to mention Houston has the second largest number of theater seats outside of New York.
Third Coast born, means I'm Texas raised
 
LAXdude1023
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 9:04 am

Quoting CV990 (Reply 15):
I would expect to see AF or any other airline to fly to places like IAD, ORD, BOS, MIA...even DEN or PHX is not so common but you have BA and LH flying there too, but IAH was quite of interesting

IAH is much larger than both PHX and DEN on the Metro level and larger than both of them on the City population level. Houston is the 4th largest city in the USA. Not to mention Houston is about 4 times more international as a city than PHX or DEN. Houston is definately the most international city in the American South (except Miami if you count MIA as being part of the south). Houston is much more international than Dallas or Atlanta for example.

IAH has: AF, BA, LH, KL, CI, AM, 6A, and soon to be EK (as far as international airlines are concerned). Also KE has made an announcement that they intend to serve IAH soon.

Houston (in my opinion) is also one of two cities in Texas that I consider to be the finest in the nation (along with Fort Worth). Dallas is ok, but Its a bit more uptight than Houston. Houston is real laid back. Fort Worth is the Jewel of the DFW area. I know lots of Houston people who hate Dallas (and vice versa), but most still like Fort Worth.

Also I might point out that if you ask someone from the US which city they think of in Texas first, It will be Dallas. However if you ask someone from another country which city they think of when they think of Texas, It will probably be Houston. Dallas's economy has a lot of US based companies and does its business mostly in the US. Houston is the International city in Texas. Business done in Houston is mostly International, thus justifying why Houston Demands so much international service from international airlines. It also explains why Dallas gets much more domestic travel than IAH does.
It is what it is...
 
n844aa
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 9:06 am

Quoting NateDAL (Reply 23):
I love Houston, but I am a native. Houston is a city that visitors usually just don't understand. However, people that either are from Houston or move there typically love it and won't leave. It is a great city that really grows on you.

Exactly. I actually feel like this is true for most of Texas -- if you haven't spent much time there, you don't understand that it's a genuinely nice place to live. (Austin is the exception, not because it's not a nice place to live -- it's a wonderful place to live -- but because its charms are immediately apparent.)

I lived in Houston for a while last year, and I really came to love the city. Easy to get around in (at least inside the loop); lots of great restaurants, bars, etc.; nice neighborhoods, an international -- sorry, intercontinental airport that's a hub for my favored airline, and a booming economy. I think at this point, the economy in Houston has grown for something like 48 straight quarters. Even the weather wasn't as bad as I'd feared -- those afternoon thunderstorms do a lot to make the summer days more bearable. If they can finish revitalizing downtown, there's probably not another thing I'd want to get out of the city.
New airplanes, new employees, low fares, all touchy-feely ... all of them are losers. -Gordon Bethune
 
Lemurs
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 9:13 am

Quoting IAHFLYR (Reply 21):
oh the power just went out and your radio has no batteries, but fear not, you can wade across the highway in the 4 ft of water from that storm and get more!

I am seriously laughing out loud right now...belly laughing even. I'll share some stories that I know you and the rest of the Houstonites will appreciate!

At almost exactly this time 6 years ago, I went down there to do some consulting work for a large "power" company who will remain nameless, but whose rhymes with the name of the guy who invented Scientology. This was May 2001, so right at the very height of their power, just months before everything hit the fan and they collapsed (Boy did they suck to work with too...so arrogant and stubborn. Thought they owned the world.)

Anyway, I was working with them in their datacenter, and one of the daily massive T-storms rolls over the city. Next thing you know, POOF, the power goes out. No big deal, they have tons of diesel generators and batteries to handle stuff like this...except...the air conditioning units didn't kick back on! Imagine how quickly it would take a huge warehouse filled with running computers and hard disks to heat up on a 90 degree Houston day? Within 15 minutes, the previously cool 64 degree datacenter was climbing past 80 degrees, and they had people frantically running up and down rows of servers pulling plugs on things. I told them they could calm down a bit because the servers they had all had thermal shutdown protection features, when one of the datacenter managers (in an entirely paniced tone), informed me that they turned off all the pesky thermal protection because it would occasionally turn the computer off when it got too hot! Needless to say, after days of being abused, it took a MIGHTY exersion of willpower not to laugh my butt off that whole afternoon. Think: hard disks on fire, pissed off people across the world, angry calls from managers...it was cathardic.

Also on that day: Since I could get no work done, I decided to go back to my hotel. It's pouring cats and dogs, but my car is parked only 50 feet away from the door. I can run and only get mostly wet, right? WRONG. By the time I got into my car, after a 5 second dash, max, I was soaked to the very bone. Every square inch. Thankfully it was so warm I didn't mind...until I had to decide on how to defog the windows without the A/C giving me the %@#% flu.

Ahh Houston...  Smile

I will say this though, and entirely seriously: I've liked almost everyone I've ever worked with out of Houston. Genuinely nice people, not just Texas Nice. (Texas Nice isn't something a guy from NJ appreciates much.) This extends to the CO people in IAH of course (to bring aviation back into it). Of course, I tend to like the EWR folks too, but then I know how to get the best of them by working with them on levels they appreciate. I know that CO FF'ers have more complaints about EWR staff, but I'm willing to bet most of those people aren't EWR based.  Wink
There are 10 kinds of people in the world; those who understand binary, and those that don't.
 
n844aa
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Joined: Fri Jul 18, 2003 10:38 am

RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 9:15 am

Quoting LAXdude1023 (Reply 25):
Dallas is ok, but Its a bit more uptight than Houston. Houston is real laid back. Fort Worth is the Jewel of the DFW area. I know lots of Houston people who hate Dallas (and vice versa), but most still like Fort Worth.

This is another point I thought about making. Houston reminds me a lot of Fort Worth, except a Fort Worth six times Fort Worth's size. But I've seen a lot of general compatibility between the people from those two cities.
New airplanes, new employees, low fares, all touchy-feely ... all of them are losers. -Gordon Bethune
 
User avatar
Coal
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 8:00 pm

Quoting Shanderawx (Reply 8):
The French presence here in Houston never ceases to amaze me. I grew up in San Antonio where it iwas unusual to hear French in public. Here there are over 80 French companies who have Houston branches, my church has a French Mass once a month, the local Alliance Francaise has been a mainstay of the culture scene here for at least 30 years, and between CO and AF there are 3-4 flights to Paris daily. The de Menil family bequeathed an incredible cultural gift to the city with the Menil Museum (always open free to the public), a museum that was the first work by architectural Pritzker Prize winner Renzo Piano in the United States. It is easy to maintain or further develop French language skills here (the Alliance has 2 French literature circles, for example). The local consulate keeps a home for the consul in River Oaks.
All in all, the relations between France and Houston are surprisingly strong and, yes, oil is the reason, but the spinoff has been superb.

Wow, this sounds quite interesting. My company (mining) has a large corporate office in Houston, but I've always dreaded the option of one day relocating there, as I thought it would just be another big, sterile American city. Then again, I'm not leaving Singapore anytime soon  wink 

Cheers,
Coal
Nxt Flts: MI RGN-SIN | SQ SIN-RGN-SIN | CX SIN-HKG-PVG | SQ PVG-SIN
 
kl911
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 8:44 pm

Quoting Cba (Reply 19):
BA is sticking with 2 daily 777's to LGW, and we're likely to see a 744 when IAH-LHR service begins. LH has upgraded to the A346, and IIRC plans to bring in the 744 this summer to FRA. KL has always been consistent with the 744 combi, and AF is working with a daily 772 with an additional 332 frequency a few days a week.

Also don't forget to mention IAH's only transatlantic 737 service by KLM/Privatair to AMS in an all businessclass layout, which proofs that the route is basically businessmen driven, not tourisme. ( And ofcourse cargo, hence the KLM combi daily.)

KL911
 
IAHFLYR
Posts: 3941
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 9:17 pm

Come to think of it, KLM has been flying to Houston since 1957 if my Houston history class remembering is correct, the days when Hobby (HOU) was the big airport in town! IAH has only been around since 1969.

[Edited 2007-05-01 14:21:16]
Any views shared are strictly my own and do not a represent those of any former employer.
 
102IAHexpress
Posts: 898
Joined: Sat Feb 19, 2005 6:33 am

RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Tue May 01, 2007 9:48 pm

Quoting Cba (Reply 19):
Sad but true. They really need to do a better job of developing the public transit here. The first light rail line is good, but they really need to speed up the process of expanding the network. So many people are stuck in the past and against it though, even though traffic and highway problems only continue to get worse. It's amazing to me that there's no commuter rail service from Downtown or the Galleria to places like Sugar Land, Katy, Cyprus, etc, as driving out there is pure hell!

I disagree. Our public transit is excellent. Keep in mind that Houston’s transit's core mission is to provide mobility to those without it, whether they can't drive or can't afford a car. To those ends Houston’s public bus system is pound for pound the best in the country. But keep in mind it's not cheap (mainly because the buses aren't full enough at the required frequency and coverage, and METRO subsidizes bus fares), but we've made a choice as a society to provide it as the transportation option of last resort with comprehensive coverage.
Light rail and heavy rail are extremely expensive as well, while moving relatively few people. Light rail will never be a huge people mover, but that doesn’t mean that I’m against it. I see it as an amenity, like our public parks, pools, and bike trials; I like having it, I don’t mind paying for it, but ultimately it’s an amenity not a people mover.
Cars on the other hand turn out to be surprisingly efficient, on both a cost and pollution basis. Cars work out to about $0.22 per passenger mile, while buses are about $0.92, commuter rail is $0.65, and light rail is a hefty $2.03. Even the often demonized "highway subsidy" only adds 0.38 cents per passenger-mile, bringing it to $0.224.
http://ti.org/antiplanner/?p=88

While other cities are spending billions to be more “hip” and “urban” and building mass transit at the expense of improving and building new highways Houston is doing the opposite and smarter thing which is investing in a very robust and efficient highway, toll way and HOV system. Don’t get me wrong young urban professionals may find Boston, Seattle or San Francisco more hip than Houston but families are leaving those cities in droves and moving to the South where the American dream is actually attainable.

But bringing the discussion back towards the thread topic. Big business does quite well in Houston. Houston is second only to NYC in the number of Fortune 500 companies headquartered here.
http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/fortune500/2007/states/TX.html
Specifically Schlumberger has headquarters in Houston and Paris, which I’m sure helps AF yields in the front of the cabin.
 
stevens91
Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2005 4:50 am

RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 12:08 am

CO shares the AF Lounge at CDG T2A
 
LAXdude1023
Posts: 4431
Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2006 3:16 pm

RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 3:43 am

Quoting 102IAHexpress (Reply 32):
I disagree. Our public transit is excellent.

With all due respect, no it isnt. Houston has abysmal public transit when compared to other cities its size and even smaller. Houston needs more rail transit badly (in the same way that LA does). There arent many cities with worse public transit than LA, but Houston is one of them. Especially when comparing Houston with cities in Asia, Europe or on the East Coast. Houston takes the LA approach to public transit, and that is that Public Transit is ONLY for people who cant afford cars.

Dont get me wrong I LOVE Houston. Its an amazing city. But this is one area that needs improvment. If they can get rail transport to the Airports, then all will be well!!!
It is what it is...
 
102IAHexpress
Posts: 898
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 3:57 am

Quoting LAXdude1023 (Reply 34):
With all due respect, no it isnt. Houston has abysmal public transit when compared to other cities its size and even smaller. Houston needs more rail transit badly (in the same way that LA does).

With all due respect, you have no idea what you’re talking about. Rail transit outside of NYC is pretty much throwing money down the drain for the purposes of moving lots of people. Now that’s not to say a city outside of NYC shouldn’t offer rail transit as an amenity to its residents and visitors. But it’s pretty much a fact that the best way to move lots of people outside of NYC is via HOV, tollways, and freeways, all of which Houston is expanding. Not to mention our bus system is excellent. Yes I said excellent. For the price passengers pay to ride METRO, they get a very robust bus network that is second to none in the country, including NYC.
 
Mike89406
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 4:13 am

I lived in NYC for a while and the subway serves NYC well, and cuts back on traffic seriously despite the traffic jams it could be 10X worse W/O a complex train network. LA I have always believed needs one badly you cant drive around w/o fearing for you're life.

Houston I drove through and while it may or may not be a good idea Houston is a very big city, I have to wonder if the low elevation of the city, tropical storm vulnerabilty/hurricane, along with flood warning frequently discourage building a train system.
 
drerx7
Posts: 4204
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 5:06 am

Quoting LAXdude1023 (Reply 34):
Dont get me wrong I LOVE Houston. Its an amazing city. But this is one area that needs improvment. If they can get rail transport to the Airports, then all will be well!!!

This is why I'm glad I live inside the loop in the Medical Center/University of Houston/Texas Southern area
Third Coast born, means I'm Texas raised
 
Glareskin
Posts: 1001
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 5:39 am

Quoting ATCT (Reply 9):
its actually a much larger city than I ever expected. I never knew it was the 4th largest in the Country.



Quoting Drerx7 (Reply 37):
the Medical Center/University of Houston/Texas Southern area

I've always knew that it is big and the Texas Medical Center is quite impressive!

Quoting Thomasphoto60 (Reply 10):
While Houston will never rival the likes of an LA or NYC, in terms of notoriety, I sincerely believe that Houston will in some 10-20 years will rival the likes of Chicago in the "respectable" category.

But no, it's hard to imagine that Houston will ever have the status of Chicago because IMHO Chicago is a metropolitan city while Houston is a huge country town. (don't flame, I actually do love Houston, this is just how I see it....)

Quoting KL911 (Reply 30):
Also don't forget to mention IAH's only transatlantic 737 service by KLM/Privatair to AMS in an all businessclass layout, which proofs that the route is basically businessmen driven, not tourisme. ( And ofcourse cargo, hence the KLM combi daily.)

Yes it's funny that people are amazed about AF having flights and consider the 747 and special business flights out of our mini-state as normal.  Confused
There's still a long way to go before all the alliances deserve a star...
 
drerx7
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 6:33 am

Quoting Glareskin (Reply 38):
But no, it's hard to imagine that Houston will ever have the status of Chicago because IMHO Chicago is a metropolitan city while Houston is a huge country town. (don't flame, I actually do love Houston, this is just how I see it....)

Status of Chicago...hmm thats a tall order--but I do think that Houston will overtake Chicago as the nations 3rd largest city (not metro area) within the next 10-20 years. Sidenote, Houston is the 3rd largest city by land area in the nation following Anchorage and Jacksonville.
Third Coast born, means I'm Texas raised
 
LAXdude1023
Posts: 4431
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 6:58 am

Quoting 102IAHexpress (Reply 35):
But it?s pretty much a fact that the best way to move lots of people outside of NYC is via HOV, tollways, and freeways, all of which Houston is expanding.

Im not trying to bash Houston, I love Houston, but I dont believe it has a great public transit. A good bus system doesnt mean that public transit over all is good. My beloved Los Angeles also has crappy public transit as well, so I dont want it to seem like im picking on Houston. I will respectfully disagree that the best way to get people from place to place is not bus, but rail (be it subway, lightrail or elevated). We see this work not just in NYC, but Chicago, Boston, DC, and other cities as well. While I think there are two reasons that Houston and LA alike dont have more rail. Both Cities take up way to much room and are not compact, and both cities have the "car is king" mentality. Houston also is built on swampland so going underground would be hard. But Houston is in need of more lightrail (at least to the extent that Dallas has). Buses are not immune to traffic, where as a rail system constructed properly can get by it.

Relating it back to air traffic. I think Houston could attract even more people if it had a rail link from Downtown to IAH. People like the convenience of being able to get around with rail from the airport to Downtown like EWR or ORD have.
It is what it is...
 
B752OS
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 7:06 am

Quoting 102IAHexpress (Reply 35):
With all due respect, you have no idea what you?re talking about. Rail transit outside of NYC is pretty much throwing money down the drain for the purposes of moving lots of people. Now that?s not to say a city outside of NYC shouldn?t offer rail transit as an amenity to its residents and visitors. But it?s pretty much a fact that the best way to move lots of people outside of NYC is via HOV, tollways, and freeways, all of which Houston is expanding. Not to mention our bus system is excellent. Yes I said excellent. For the price passengers pay to ride METRO, they get a very robust bus network that is second to none in the country, including NYC.

I disagree...highways and tollroads are not the answer....have you ever been to Los Angeles? I live in Boston where we have a pretty good sized city, about 600,000 not including the 200,000-250,000 college kids, and a large metro area and our transit system is huge in keeping traffic on the higways down. If we did not have the expansive commuter rail and subway netowrk, in addition to the bus and water shuttle system, our highways would not be able to handle the huge increase in traffic. Not to mention, for people living in the suburbs, it's nice to be able to sit back and not have to worry about fighting traffic to and from work.

Quoting Drerx7 (Reply 39):
Status of Chicago...hmm thats a tall order--but I do think that Houston will overtake Chicago as the nations 3rd largest city (not metro area) within the next 10-20 years. Sidenote, Houston is the 3rd largest city by land area in the nation following Anchorage and Jacksonville.

With all respect to Houston, It's a nice city, but I will never look at it the same way as Chicago. To me, Chicago is a city, it feels like a city. Houston is too new and modern and is not as culturally diverse as a Chicago is. Then again, Chicago is a top 5 favorite city of mine.
 
IAHFLYR
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 7:09 am

Quoting LAXdude1023 (Reply 40):
I think Houston could attract even more people if it had a rail link from Downtown to IAH

I thought, remember though I am old (A TC T)  Smile

But I did hear some rumblings of the city wanting to run the Metro from downtown out to IAH, I think they have to fix the problem of drivers in downtown running into the light rail trains!  banghead 

And it hasn't been mentioned I don't believe, AF has a B742 cargo flight a few times a week as well.
Any views shared are strictly my own and do not a represent those of any former employer.
 
drerx7
Posts: 4204
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 7:10 am

Quoting B752OS (Reply 41):
Houston is too new and modern and is not as culturally diverse as a Chicago is. Then again, Chicago is a top 5 favorite city of mine.

I almost agree...except that I would say that Houston is just as culturally diverse. Houston will overtake them in due time in terms of the number 3 spot in the country. I would say Chicago is one of my favorite cities to visit (not to live)...if it wasn't for an ex-girlfriend of mine that lives there.  headache 
Third Coast born, means I'm Texas raised
 
ssides
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RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 7:17 am

Quoting LAXdude1023 (Reply 34):
Houston needs more rail transit badly (in the same way that LA does).

The low population density of these metro areas makes any rail system a big-time money loser. Freeways and tollways are a much better use of transportation dollars when people are spread out horizontally instead of vertically.
"Lose" is not spelled with two o's!!!!
 
ScottB
Posts: 5414
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2000 1:25 am

RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 7:21 am

Quoting Lemurs (Reply 12):
You know, I was in Houston for business a few months ago (visiting a company that does business in drilling, of course) and I stayed at the Sofitel there near IAH. When I *saw* there was a Sofitel there, I was sort of shocked.

Unfortunately, the Sofitel in Houston is no longer a Sofitel, it's a Crowne Plaza or something like that. But it had been a Sofitel for at least 20 years.

I'm a little bit surprised that no one (with respect to connections to France) mentioned the two now-closed Auchan hypermarkets in Houston. The one on the West Belt was great fun to shop in.

Quoting Chugach (Reply 17):
either AM or MX (can't remember), I believe TACA, among many others.

Definitely AM; their U.S. headquarters are in Houston. IAH used to get most of the Central American carriers like LACSA, Aviateca, and SAHSA until they either went out of business (SAHSA) or were subsumed into TACA. VIASA also flew into IAH, as did SAA before the apartheid-related restrictions came into being.

Quoting Cba (Reply 19):
BA, LH, KL and AF have always been the 4 staples of international service. I miss the old days where they all used to bring in 747's

Well, not BA originally, but British Caledonian, and with (at first 707's) DC-10's.

Quoting Cba (Reply 19):
Cyprus, etc,

Cypress, like the tree.
 
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flyingclrs727
Posts: 701
Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2007 7:44 am

RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 7:47 am

Quoting LAXdude1023 (Reply 34):
With all due respect, no it isnt. Houston has abysmal public transit when compared to other cities its size and even smaller. Houston needs more rail transit badly



Quoting B752OS (Reply 41):
we did not have the expansive commuter rail and subway netowrk, in addition to the bus and water shuttle system, our highways would not be able to handle the huge increase in traffic. Not to mention, for people living in the suburbs, it's nice to be able to sit back and not have to worry about fighting traffic to and from work.



Quoting 102IAHexpress (Reply 32):
I disagree. Our public transit is excellent. Keep in mind that Houston's transit's core mission is to provide mobility to those without it, whether they can't drive or can't afford a car. To those ends Houston's public bus system is pound for pound the best in the country. But keep in mind it's not cheap (mainly because the buses aren't full enough at the required frequency and coverage, and METRO subsidizes bus fares), but we've made a choice as a society to provide it as the transportation option of last resort with comprehensive coverage.

So why does Houston need rail rather than more busses? Rail takes years to build just one route, and then it's really inflexible. There are lots of streets, freeways, tollways, and HOV lanes already available to run busses. The fact that busses can use the HOV lanes means they can get to their destinations faster than single occupant cars during rush hour. What's really needed is for more express bus service between business centers like downtown and the Galleria area and the airports. Business travelers aren't going to use any form of public transportation between airports and business centers that require lots of local stops. I have a friend of mine who once tried using the DART train from DFW to Dallas, and he barely made his appointment in downtown Dallas due to the number of local stops.

If empty busses are a problem, why not emulate the airline industry and downsize the equipment on some routes? Why does every route need a 60 passenger bus?

Considering that most people have cell phones and in the future almost all cell phones will have embedded GPS receivers, why shouldn't it be possible to call for a shared taxi that could take people directly from the location where they are currently located to their desired destinations. The existing taxi monopolies are an overpriced scam deliberately set up to prevent real competition. Being able to share rides would cut down the cost of service and decrease the need to have a car that has to be parked at every place a person goes.

[Edited 2007-05-02 00:54:41]
 
Lemurs
Posts: 1320
Joined: Sat Mar 12, 2005 5:13 am

RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 8:46 am

Quoting ScottB (Reply 45):
Unfortunately, the Sofitel in Houston is no longer a Sofitel, it's a Crowne Plaza or something like that. But it had been a Sofitel for at least 20 years.

Since late January of this year it has changed? Because that's when I was staying there...if so...wow, that was quick!
There are 10 kinds of people in the world; those who understand binary, and those that don't.
 
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flyingclrs727
Posts: 701
Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2007 7:44 am

RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 8:53 am

Quoting Lemurs (Reply 47):
Since late January of this year it has changed? Because that's when I was staying there...if so...wow, that was quick!

Well it's listed in Google Map as Hotel Sofitel, and it has an official website on the sofitel.com website.


http://www.google.com/maps?hl=en&q=s...Houston,+TX&sa=X&oi=local&ct=title


http://www.sofitel.com/sofitel/fiche...otel/gb/sof/0543/fiche_hotel.shtml
 
102IAHexpress
Posts: 898
Joined: Sat Feb 19, 2005 6:33 am

RE: Why AF Flies To IAH?

Wed May 02, 2007 10:35 am

Quoting B752OS (Reply 41):
Houston is too new and modern and is not as culturally diverse as a Chicago is..

There are so many things wrong with that sentence I don’t even know where to begin. For not being as culturaly diverse as Chicago Houston sure does have more consulates than Chicago. And let us not forget the fact that Russia chose Houston over Chicago for their new US consulate a couple years back. But lets not start a flame war as Houston and Chicago actually have more similarities than differences.

Both are cities that work. These are cities where the trash gets picked up, the police control crowds and things get built.

Both are cities for workers. Our Mayor Bill White talks about Houston as a city where nobody comes to retire. The same is true of Chicago. They are places of ambition, whether for blue-collar workers, entrepreneurs or executives.

Both have, by design, strong mayors. They want their elected leaders to be able to get things done. Both are Democratic cities in Republican states.

Both are great immigrant cities. Chicago was a magnet in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to hundreds of thousands of Poles, Czechs, Italians, Irish and others. Houston is today attracting hundreds of thousands of Asians, Latin Americans, Africans and others. ...

Both are great restaurant towns. We have fabulous high-dollar restaurants because there is plenty of money to support them and wonderful inexpensive restaurants because of the immigrants.

Quoting B752OS (Reply 41):
With all respect to Houston, It's a nice city, but I will never look at it the same way as Chicago. To me, Chicago is a city, it feels like a city.

If by feeling like a city you mean urban density then, sure, Chicago feels like a city. But so does Houston. Houston has more urban density than sprawl. Although I actually like sprawl, but for some reason sprawl has a negative connotation. In any event it’s tough to compare Houston and Chicago when it comes to urban density only because Chicago has like a 150 years on Houston. But lets compare Houston and other 21st century cites like Dallas, Portland, and Phoenix, using census data on residential building permits in 2006
http://www.census.gov/const/www/permitsindex.html

Looking at the cities, not the metros, to isolate the results of city-specific planning policies. The census groups permits into the following buckets: single family, two family, 3-4 family, and 5+ family. For simplicity,lets look at the dense category (5+ family) and overall totals.

Residential Building Permits in 2006

City / 2005 Pop / 5+ Density Bldg / 5+Density Units / Units per Dense Bldg / Dense Units per 1000pop / vs. HOU

Houston / 2,016,582 / 344 / 9,661 / 28.1 / 4.8
Dallas / 1,213,825 / 133 / 3,424 / 25.7 / 2.8 / 59%
Portland / 562,690 / 56 / 2,038 / 36.4 / 3.6 / 76%
Phoenix / 1,461,575 / 105 / 1,670 / 15.9 / 1.1 / 24%

City / 2005 Pop / Total Bldgs / Total Units / Units per Bldg / Total Units per 1000pop / vs. HOU

Houston / 2,016,582 / 7,982 / 17,491 / 2.19 / 8.7
Dallas / 1,213,825 / 3,349 / 6,731 / 2.01 / 5.5 / 64%
Portland / 562,690 / 1,420 / 3,551 / 2.50 / 6.3 / 73%
Phoenix / 1,461,575 / 9,299 / 11,269 / 1.21 / 7.7 / 89%

The results are a pretty clear win for Houston: more dense units, more units per building (except for a slight advantage by Portland), and more new units per 1,000 population. Portland is able to achieve slightly higher densities, but at a cost of about 25% lower unit production per capita. Phoenix is producing a whopping 76% less density than Houston relative to its population. Dallas has about 40% less high-density and overall residential production relative to its population.
Houston's free market approach (no zoning) is creating more density (at lower cost, by the way), allowing more people to move into the core with shorter commutes creating less pollution, while also pumping more discretionary income into the core, supporting more vibrancy and amenities.

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