AeroMaxx
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WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Mon Nov 19, 2007 9:24 pm

I am wondering why WN does not offer flights from SEA and PDX to its major stations in Southern California such as LAX and SAN. They offer LAS and PHX nonstop from the Pacific NW. Is there any major reason that WN is staying away from this market?
 
srbmod
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Mon Nov 19, 2007 10:00 pm



Quoting AeroMaxx (Thread starter):
Is there any major reason that WN is staying away from this market?

I'm guessing the airline with an Eskimo on the tail has something to do with this, at least on the PDX-SAN-PDX and SEA-SAN-SEA route, as the PDX-LAX-PDX route has AS, QX, UA, and XE (Total of 13 flights) while the SEA-LAX-SEA route has AS, UA, and EX (With a total of 18 flights a day on the route).
 
copaair737
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Mon Nov 19, 2007 10:05 pm

I think they run a lot of their north-south traffic via their stations in Northern California.
Stops in OAK, SJC, and SMF, to feed the enormous amounts of flights between NorCal and SoCal.
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OzarkD9S
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Mon Nov 19, 2007 10:14 pm

Gates and in the case of SNA, slots are a major issue at SoCal airports for WN (and everyone else as well). The SoCal-Pacific NW is well served and WN probably isn't going to make a play for SEA and PDX from BUR/LAX/SNA when those resources would be better utilized on intra-Cali/LAS/PHX/MDW and the various monopoloy markets WN has. If Wn were miraculously able to squeeze another 30 flights a day out of their LAX facilities, they might give it a go.

WN has also had some issues with SEA, as their well documented battle to move to BFI.
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N1120A
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 12:06 am



Quoting Copaair737 (Reply 2):
I think they run a lot of their north-south traffic via their stations in Northern California.
Stops in OAK, SJC, and SMF, to feed the enormous amounts of flights between NorCal and SoCal.

This is absolutely true. Further, some people will even run through LAS. I have friends in Seattle who are so loyal to WN, they always do the connection or 1 stop down to L.A., as it gives them the BUR option as well.

Quoting OzarkD9S (Reply 3):
Gates and in the case of SNA, slots are a major issue at SoCal airports for WN (and everyone else as well).

There are only 2 airports in Southern California with slot controls, SNA and LGB, the latter of which WN does not serve. Now, WN does have pretty well known gate space issues at LAX that should have been sorted long ago with a brokered deal to get US/HP to move in with United.

Quoting OzarkD9S (Reply 3):

WN has also had some issues with SEA, as their well documented battle to move to BFI.

I think this has a lot to do with it.
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eghansen
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 2:21 am

WN has always had a long history of not flying in direct competition with other airlines wherever possible.

The only routes WN flys out of SAN in direct competition with the majors is SAN-SFO, SAN-PHX, SAN-LAS and they just reinstated the SFO route after a multi-year hiatus.

WN loves to fly routes majors do not fly, for example, we have non-stop SAN to ELP, TUS, SMF, RNO, OAK, ABQ, AUS, HOU, BNA, MCI, MDW. On all these routes WN is the only operator. In addition, they often fly these routes with substantial frequency, such as SAN-SMF with something like 10 flights per day.

WN has always been a very elusive airline regarding direct competition.
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N1120A
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 2:55 am



Quoting Eghansen (Reply 5):
WN has always had a long history of not flying in direct competition with other airlines wherever possible.

Nearly every route WN flies out of LAX has competition.
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Super80DFW
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 3:02 am

Its because of Alaska Airlines. They fly all over the west coast.
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roseflyer
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 3:19 am

I'd like to say it was because of Alaska, but WN and AS compete heavily to the Bay Area from SEA and PDX.

WN has stayed out of the SEA/PDX-Socal market and AS has mostly stayed out of the Northern California to Socal routes. The two airlines seem to leave each other alone.
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SANFan
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 3:23 am



Quoting Eghansen (Reply 5):
The only routes WN flys out of SAN in direct competition with the majors is SAN-SFO, SAN-PHX, SAN-LAS and they just reinstated the SFO route after a multi-year hiatus.

Plus SJC, DEN, coming in April, and a good possibility of SLC expanding from Saturday-only (that starts in March); multi-airport cities such as Houston, Chicago, and Baltimore/Washington could be argued as competitive market routes but there is no question that WN likes finding and developing un-served routes, with SAN being a prime example.

Quoting OzarkD9S (Reply 3):
If Wn were miraculously able to squeeze another 30 flights a day out of their LAX facilities, they might give it a go.

SAN is in exactly the same situation as LAX and I agree with those saying that if gates were more plentiful at any So Cal airport (other than ONT where WN still has room to expand), we might very well see n/s flights to the Northwest.

One last point: don't forget that WN is very tight with things at SEA due to the high costs there; I don't think WN would be likely to suddenly add 10-15 flights to LAX, SAN, BUR and ONT even if AS suddenly disappeared tomorrow.

bb
 
Mason
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 4:23 am

I used to think that WN wanted to avoid direct competition out of SEA at all costs, but after starting the SEA-DEN route (served by UA, AS, and F9), I am rethinking this hypothesis. I think the introduction of a WN product into several key (and previously thought to be un-penetrable) markets in the last few years went against everyone's opinion of what WN was.

WN can now be found in the UA/F9 fortress that is DEN, and two other UA hubs (SFO and IAD). WN is also flying to DTW and PHL (huge hub airports for NW and US, respectively).

I think it is safe to say that WN defines a market wherever it goes, perhaps attracting people who have never flown before, taking little away from the resident carriers. This is what I like to call the Costco effect. Costco members usually assume that "If I can find it at Costco, it must be a better deal than at the supermarket." While this is the case sometimes, it is never always true. Many loyal WN customers never check other carrier's prices, and would never think to do so, always assuming that the WN fare will be the cheapest. Again, while this is true sometimes, it is often the case that a cheaper fare is available on a "legacy".

Having said all that, I think WN would be wise to begin service from SEA/PDX to LAX, and perhaps to BUR. I agree that getting into SNA and SAN may have slot issues, but there is certainly money to be made by WN linking LAX with the Northwest.
 
doug_or
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 4:32 am

WN used to go to LAX (and maybe BUR or ONT?) out of PDX in the 90s. Don't know why they stopped, the flights I was on were full, but I was probably traveling at peak times back then.
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eghansen
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 4:34 am



Quoting N1120A (Reply 6):
Nearly every route WN flies out of LAX has competition.

I am not suggesting as a hard and fast rule that Southwest will not go head-to-head with the big boys, but who would have ever heard of Islip if Southwest wasn't flying there? (I humbly apologize to those residents of Long Island who will write back and say that insulting their local airport.)
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eva777sea
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 5:32 am



Quoting OzarkD9S (Reply 3):
WN has also had some issues with SEA, as their well documented battle to move to BFI.

If that had happened, you could bet that we could have SEA-SoCal flights now. If I remember correctly, they wanted to really build up BFI, into one of their larger stations.
 
rwsea
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 6:36 am



Quoting OzarkD9S (Reply 3):
WN has also had some issues with SEA, as their well documented battle to move to BFI.



Quoting N1120A (Reply 4):
I think this has a lot to do with it.

I'm not so sure about that - after the spat with SEA, WN has still added additional frequencies to LAS/PHX and has recently added SEA-DEN. If there was a market, they'd add it. I'm thinking its a combination of AS/UA and the capacity issues at LAX, SNA, etc. However, I'd be interested to see if they add SEA/PDX-SFO in an attempt to head-off Virgin America.
 
iowaman
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 7:03 am

With the combination of so many 1 stop flights via SJC/OAK/SFO/LAS/PHX/wherever to socal from SEA and PDX, and the lack of gates/slots/space in every socal WN airport but ONT, and the high fees of SEA as well as higher priorities in the network, all combine together so it's not high on the list. If the gate space was more avail., and fees were lower on both ends, as well as extra 737's and cheap fuel to go around, there is no doubt in my mind a SEA/PDX-LAX/BUR/SAN would work.

[Edited 2007-11-19 23:05:51]
 
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seabosdca
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 7:21 am



Quoting N1120A (Reply 4):
I have friends in Seattle who are so loyal to WN, they always do the connection or 1 stop down to L.A.,

 crazy 

Masochists.

Seriously, though, I'm surprised AS/QX doesn't have more competition in the PNW (especially SEA)-SoCal market. Plenty of airlines, not just WN, could make such flights work. For the sake of my own sanity, I hope the next one to try is not WN.

Also, I price WN just for kicks on many trips I take, although it would take a fare hundreds cheaper to convince me to actually fly them. I rarely find that the fare is different from the legacies by more than a few bucks.
 
laca773
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 7:25 am



Quoting RoseFlyer (Reply 8):
I'd like to say it was because of Alaska, but WN and AS compete heavily to the Bay Area from SEA and PDX.

WN has stayed out of the SEA/PDX-Socal market and AS has mostly stayed out of the Northern California to Socal routes. The two airlines seem to leave each other alone.

RoseFlyer, Very good point. You pretty much hit that on the money. But as many of you have mentioned, AS flies into very large WN cities, LAS, PHX. AS has quite a few flights from both of these cities to both PDX & SEA which before was the basic 3x times a day to both except for during peak times of the year. I've noticed since AS has become much more a "no frills" kinda airline, though still a legacy (since they still have an F cabin) they have added a lot of service out of cities like LAX & PHX.
I have wondered why also WN hasn't started service from LAX to PDX & SEA (other than gate space being an issue in T1). I wouldn't be surprised to see WN add LAX-PDX now that UA is going UAX to PDX from LAX with CR7s.
I'm sure BUR can use a couple more flights a day on the BUR-SEA run. I'm sure they wouldn't have any problems filling flights on a route like this up.

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F9Animal
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 8:27 am

It also has to do with the costs. SEA is pretty expensive to operate out of, hence why they wanted to go out of BFI. Lucky for AS that WN has not made a push on the NW region. I would however like to see WN look into flying into the Alaska territory. How cool it would be to see WN in ANC, and a few other places.
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N1120A
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 9:08 am



Quoting Rwsea (Reply 14):
If there was a market, they'd add it.

The market is very obviously there.

Quoting Rwsea (Reply 14):

I'm not so sure about that - after the spat with SEA, WN has still added additional frequencies to LAS/PHX and has recently added SEA-DEN.

That is more of a slight reallocation of capacity as opposed to an onslaught of new service. An entry into the SEA-LAX market would mean at least 3-4 flights a day to compete.
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iaddca
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 2:14 pm



Quoting Eghansen (Reply 5):

WN has always been a very elusive airline regarding direct competition.

then why close to 50 flights a day between SFO, SAN, LAX, and LAS? Red envy?
 
searpqx
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 4:52 pm



Quoting F9Animal (Reply 18):
Lucky for AS that WN has not made a push on the NW region. I would however like to see WN look into flying into the Alaska territory. How cool it would be to see WN in ANC, and a few other places.

Check your history, WN made a very aggressive push after the Morris Air purchase and WN/AS went head on several key routes. The outcome was reduced WN frequencies to GEG & BOI and a guarded co-existence on SEA-SJC/OAK. AS is one of the few carriers that has successfully fought back and held its ground against WN, and they've made clear they'll do it again if necessary. I doubt that alone would stop WN from expanding in AS markets, but when their are other opportunities it probably does figure into the dearth of SEA-So Cal WN operated flights.
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AeroMaxx
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 5:23 pm

So basically it is AS that is keeping WN from adding Pacific NW to South Cal. routes? I would think that they would make at least LAX-PDX or SEA work since they do so well to other cities within 200 miles (LAS).
 
searpqx
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 5:33 pm



Quoting AeroMaxx (Reply 22):
o basically it is AS that is keeping WN from adding Pacific NW to South Cal. routes?

Like others have said, I don't think AS is the sole reason, but when you add in a tough competitor, below average fares already available, multiple competitors, space constraints on one end and high costs on the other, I think WN sees better opportunities elsewhere for now.
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AirRyan
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 6:10 pm



Quoting SeaBosDca (Reply 16):
Also, I price WN just for kicks on many trips I take, although it would take a fare hundreds cheaper to convince me to actually fly them. I rarely find that the fare is different from the legacies by more than a few bucks.

Remember that there are two variables that go into determining the price of the ticket you pay for airfare - one is the actual level of airfare that the airline has published or made available but then there is the just as important variable of yield management which may or may not make that fare available for purchase at that time.
 
N1120A
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 7:18 pm



Quoting Searpqx (Reply 21):
AS is one of the few carriers that has successfully fought back and held its ground against WN, and they've made clear they'll do it again if necessary.

That was a different time and AS had a much better product to compete with. AS has gone from having some of the best domestic service in the industry and an excellent performance record, to a bare bones economy service and terrible outsourced performance.
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searpqx
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Tue Nov 20, 2007 7:21 pm



Quoting N1120A (Reply 25):
That was a different time and AS had a much better product to compete with. AS has gone from having some of the best domestic service in the industry and an excellent performance record, to a bare bones economy service and terrible outsourced performance.

I think you'll find in the markets we're discussing it comes down to price, price and finally price. I'm no fan of the changes at AS, but they still command a loyal following and I'll still take their service over WN any day. If they can match WN on price and beat them on frequency (which is the combo they used on GEG & BOI), then they'd still do very well in any match up (as they continue to do in the No Cal markets).
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mtnwest1979
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Wed Nov 21, 2007 2:14 am



Quoting Searpqx (Reply 21):
The outcome was reduced WN frequencies to GEG & BOI

Well, WN has not reduced frequency into BOI since they began here. BOI-PDX/SEA/GEG flights have been 3/day (well SEA was two until originating flight started in mid 90s). Only GEG has had frequency reductions of these two. Weekends excluded. These seem to flip-flop on number/day.
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BooDog
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RE: WN- Why No SEA/PDX To South Cal?

Wed Nov 21, 2007 2:18 am



Quoting F9Animal (Reply 18):
I would however like to see WN look into flying into the Alaska territory.

large portions of the intra-alaska commercial flights are somewhat regulated.... Alaska Airlines is the only airline allowed to do these flights.

This is all I know. Someone out in a.net land can expand on it.
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