simairlinenet
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NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Wed Oct 05, 2011 6:38 pm

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/05/us...lea-for-planes-to-keep-flying.html

Unfortunately, the article is missing what I think is a key point. Delta has a 500-employee reservations center in nearby Chisholm handling SkyMiles. From an operational (and employee relations) perspective, I'd have a hard time believing that Hibbing flights would disappear if the reservations center is staying. Your thoughts? Are there other examples of an airline having important operations somewhere without flights going there?
 
midex461
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Wed Oct 05, 2011 7:32 pm

US has a sizable res center in INT - but no flights there
Opinions and views expressed are MINE and do NOT represent the views of US Airways
 
crosswinds21
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Wed Oct 05, 2011 7:51 pm

From the article:

Quote:
Q. Delta says the flights are not nearly full, and that it is losing money. Why should they keep flying to Hibbing?

Ms. Shafer: “A lot of these big companies don’t care about the people. They just don’t care about the needs of people anymore. They only care about their bottom line. If that isn’t greed, what is it? It’s crazy.”

And....there goes his credibility.
 
Grid
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Wed Oct 05, 2011 8:18 pm

I read this article prior to its posting here. I was disappointed in the journalist not really calling out the answers of the officials. It was a puff-piece. The official says they have elderly people there and buses are not a good choice. And? They also complain that you have to pay for parking if you drive to the Twin Cities? I'm not sure why certain people should not have to pay for parking at the airport - millions of Americans do it regularly.

The whole accusation of greed is baseless. How long has Delta been losing money on the route? Is that greed? What if it Delta raised prices so it would not lose money on the route - would that be OK with these two?
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bennett123
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Wed Oct 05, 2011 9:02 pm

If Delta were making massive profits on this route, then I MIGHT start to see his point, but they are not a registered charity.

Why does the town not organise buses or find an airline that can make the route work.

Incidentally, is this an EAS route.
 
bluejuice
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Wed Oct 05, 2011 9:13 pm

Lousy article. Big attention going to the loss of HIB-MSP and how it's about 4 hours away. Glossed over the part where DLH is about 90 minutes away.
 
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DeltaMD90
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Wed Oct 05, 2011 9:16 pm

Sounds like these people need to go to the corporate greed protests in DC  
Ironically I have never flown a Delta MD-90 :)
 
joeljack
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Wed Oct 05, 2011 9:38 pm

DLH is only 72 miles from Hibbing. That's nothing!! DLH has DL service to MSP and DTW. UA has service to ORD. Allegiant Serves LAS, Phoenix-mesa and Orlando(seasonal). There is no way my tax dollars should go to support an airport this close to another airport with service to 3 hubs!! Makes my stomach turn!!
 
srbmod
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Wed Oct 05, 2011 10:32 pm

Quoting Midex461 (Reply 1):
US has a sizable res center in INT - but no flights there

AirTran has a reservations center in Savannah, but ceased flying there a couple of years ago.


Airlines can't prop up every money-losing station, so at some point, they've got to cut service even if there is an EAS subsidy, especially if the per passenger costs exceed the limits of the EAS subsidies (Case in point, Georgia Skies and the ATL-MCN route which no longer operates with the EAS subsidy because of the per passenger costs exceeded the EAS limits.).

One part of the article I want to address:

Quote:
Butte, Mont.; Muscle Shoals, Ala.; Waterloo, Iowa; Pierre, S.D.; Greenville and Tupelo, Miss.; Sault Sainte Marie, Mich.; and Hibbing, Minn., are among the cities where the flights are threatened.

Butte is about 70 miles from Helena, which has airline service.
Muscle Shoals is about 70 miles from Huntsville.
Waterloo is about 60 miles from Cedar Rapids
Pierre is well over two hours from commercial airport, but they still have Great Lakes service to DEN and Alliance, NE.
Greenville, MS is a 2-3 hour drive from a number of commercial airports in Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas, and Louisiana.
Tupelo is about a 70 minute drive from the Golden Triangle Regional Airport.
Sault Ste. Marie is about a 3 hour drive to the nearest airport for domestic service. There is commercial service across the border in Ontario, but not to any US cities and would require connecting within Canada in order to get to any US cities.
Hibbing has already been addressed in the thread.

In many of these cases, there is an airport within 90 minutes of them that offers similar service, and there is no need for some of these cities to retain airline service. Cities in which the nearest airport with commercial service is over 90 minutes really need to be retained if at all possible (assuming the per passenger costs with the subsidy are not excessive). In some cases, there may not be any other choice but to end commercial service at some of these airports that are a significant distance from the nearest commercial airport.
 
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Wed Oct 05, 2011 11:46 pm

Quoting simairlinenet (Thread starter):
Unfortunately, the article is missing what I think is a key point.

I'd call that a key point too, but considering it was a Q&A with city leaders I can't fault the writer too much. The city officials are elected for the benefit of every citizen, not just the Delta employees at the call center. So I can see why it wasn't mentioned.

However like you say if the flights disappear that would really be a blow to the sizable amount of employees there. The staff is well known for providing good customer service, and losing local air service is a hit to their benefits of being a Delta employee. It's definitely not a positive for them or the regular users of HIB. People simple pointing to DLH as an option really don't understand the situation. Not all PAX that fly out of HIB are just 75 miles from DLH (Chisholm is farther away), and in the winter it really doesn't matter sometimes. Driving can be treacherous no matter how far it is.
 
planespotting
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Thu Oct 06, 2011 1:07 am

Quoting Grid (Reply 3):
I was disappointed in the journalist not really calling out the answers of the officials. It was a puff-piece.

Echoing MSPNWA's thoughts, the "article" was actually a Q&A with little or no editorial input from the writer. It was purely from the point of view of the folks being interviewed, which to people like you and me shows a pretty glaring ignorance on their part (the town officials). To make an emotional argument for a purely business decision is pretty weak:

A lot of these big companies don’t care about the people. They just don’t care about the needs of people anymore. They only care about their bottom line. If that isn’t greed, what is it? It’s crazy.

Where has this lady been over the last 30 years? Delta (and other airlines, and most publicly traded companies) are in it to make money to return to their shareholders. They do it by serving passengers in and out of airports where they can make money. If they can't make money on a route, they shouldn't have to keep it going if they don't want to.

It's like she's straight out of Lake Wobegon from A Prairie Home Companion.
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JAAlbert
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Thu Oct 06, 2011 1:32 am

It sounds like the officials want corporations to subsidize folks living in isolated areas - areas so isolated that perhaps people shouldn't live there.
 
milesrich
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Thu Oct 06, 2011 3:02 am

PLN which is served by Delta is only 65 miles from Sault Ste. Marie, on Interstate Highway, so its hardly a three hour drive as was alleged above.

Quoting srbmod (Reply 8):
Sault Ste. Marie is about a 3 hour drive to the nearest airport for domestic service. There is commercial service across the border in Ontario, but not to any US cities and would require connecting within Canada in order to get to any US cities.
 
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coronado
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Thu Oct 06, 2011 3:15 am

The UP of Michigan needs to think in terms of building ONE new airport about 20-25 miles south of L'Anse to become a Western UP regional airport that can cater to Marquette, Houghton/Hancock/Calumet/, Iron Mountain, Ironwood, Escanaba.
If you place a well located regional airport within 90 minutes drive of the population centers of the Western UP you can then market the region as having reliable frequent scheduled service to the rest of the world. Let's face it any time jet fuel remains above 3.00/gal, airports who cannot justify 2 flights x 100 pax/day are frankly not viable. Sure those towns/regions can hope that the politicos will approve larger EAS subsidies, but in this day and age that is a short sighted strategy.
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acidradio
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Thu Oct 06, 2011 1:35 pm

I guess one of the questions is why this is all happening right now. One reason may be fuel prices. Another idea discussed is that the Saabs are simply getting long in the tooth and that there isn't a really good replacement option for them at this time.

NW operated all of these routes through low and high fuel prices and didn't flinch. It was almost that they felt that they had a duty to the region to keep it "well connected." Then DL came in. To many it feels like if it doesn't have anything to do with ATL or JFK it is just expendable. There are politics to everything.

South Dakota seems to have a problem with people willing to drive an extra distance to save a buck. This is true whether it is groceries, fuel, clothing... or airline flights! Maybe that is their thrifty and conservative nature. But it then makes for problems with the local businesses trying to stay afloat.
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toltommy
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Fri Oct 07, 2011 1:02 am

Quoting acidradio (Reply 14):
I guess one of the questions is why this is all happening right now. One reason may be fuel prices. Another idea discussed is that the Saabs are simply getting long in the tooth and that there isn't a really good replacement option for them at this time.

It's fuel prices. Like the 50 seat CRJ, there just are not enough seats to offset the higher fuel cost. The Saabs are not young, but not nearly as old as some make it sound. Still younger than the youngest DC9, and even most of the MD88 fleet.
 
deltairlines
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Fri Oct 07, 2011 1:16 am

Quoting TOLtommy (Reply 15):
Still younger than the youngest DC9, and even most of the MD88 fleet.

Still, the Saabs have been doing 10 segments a day for 10-15 years now, which is a lot of wear and tear.

The fact is the with -9s and -88s is that (a) they aren't doing nearly as many segments as that, and (b) McD-D overengineered the hell out of that plane - something you can't say about really any new line built in the last 20 years.
 
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Fri Oct 07, 2011 1:57 am

Quoting DeltAirlines (Reply 16):
Still, the Saabs have been doing 10 segments a day for 10-15 years now, which is a lot of wear and tear.

Delta and moist US Airlines are dumping their SAAB 340s due the fact they do NOT want to fly turbo prop aircraft.
Fifty seat RJs are NOT the answer as they would require more passengers per flight to break even.
There really is no 34 seat turbo prop being currently built as there is no demand for the aircraft. People do not like turbo props and think they should fly jets. The only thing I do not like about turbo props is the deicing or anti ice system. Instead of using bleed air to heat the main wings's leading edges, rubber boots are use to break the ice off leading edges of the main wing.
If a city can not support air service to a larger airport, maybe these cities should consider a bus shuttle service that would transport people to a larger airport. There is such a system that runs daily from Rochester, MN to Minneapolis, MN (MSP), and it is very successful. The Rochester Shuttle has several pick up points in Rochester and goes directly to the airport at MSP and back more than once a day. It also makes money.   
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jetdudetim
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Fri Oct 07, 2011 3:29 am

Ms. Shafer: “A lot of these big companies don’t care about the people. They just don’t care about the needs of people anymore. They only care about their bottom line. If that isn’t greed, what is it? It’s crazy.”



What a stupid, stupid thing for her to say. Get real, businesses aren't charity!
 
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Fri Oct 07, 2011 3:38 am

Quoting jetdudetim (Reply 18):
What a stupid, stupid thing for her to say.

I don't know her backround, but she sounds like someone that has been in civil service all her working life. She sound like those that regard the airlines as public utilities instead of businesses.
"A committee is a group of the unprepared, appointed by the unwilling, to do the unnecessary"----Fred Allen
 
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Fri Oct 07, 2011 4:14 am

Quoting DeltAirlines (Reply 16):


Still, the Saabs have been doing 10 segments a day for 10-15 years now, which is a lot of wear and tear.

The Mesaba B+ Saabs were all delivered new between 1996-1998. Ultimately they are being removed for a few reason, but not because of their age. They do not and have never flown 10 segments a day. Really, it is more like 6-8 cycles, no different than the CRJ fleet today.

Saabs are being retired:
- Because they can, their leases up for renewal, unlike many of the CRJs which are on longer term leases
- Fuel cost, with the limited number of seats, requires much higher yields to cover the sector cost
- Glut of 50 seat RJs, of which many leases are not up for renewal
- Changing economics of air service in many of these communities over the past few years, many are weaker than they were before and can't overcome the leakage to other airport

Quoting milesrich (Reply 12):
PLN which is served by Delta is only 65 miles from Sault Ste. Marie, on Interstate Highway, so its hardly a three hour drive as was alleged above.

PLN is also an EAS airport like CIU. DL has said they want to continue to serve both CIU and PLN with EAS subsides but need to get the subsidy to cover the increased cost of CRJ service vs. SF3 service in the past.
 
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ADent
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Fri Oct 07, 2011 4:39 am

Quoting simairlinenet (Thread starter):
re there other examples of an airline having important operations somewhere without flights going there?

United Airlines had a reservations center in Atlanta Georgia. They stopped service to ATL completely from late 1979 to sometime in 1984. Closest town with service was HSV, about a 3.5 hour drive.
 
simairlinenet
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Fri Oct 07, 2011 10:59 am

Quoting acidradio (Reply 14):
NW operated all of these routes through low and high fuel prices and didn't flinch. It was almost that they felt that they had a duty to the region to keep it "well connected." Then DL came in. To many it feels like if it doesn't have anything to do with ATL or JFK it is just expendable. There are politics to everything.

A recent article (sorry, can't remember whose) uncovered the fact that a Northwest study shortly before the merger found that 25-30 such regional routes were unprofitable but worth maintaining for the political capital they generated (read: Oberstar et al.).
 
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Sat Oct 08, 2011 2:39 pm

Quoting NWAROOSTER (Reply 17):

Do they still run jets RST-MSP in competition with the shuttle?
Is just me, or is flying not as much fun anymore?
 
srbmod
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Sat Oct 08, 2011 3:17 pm

Quoting milesrich (Reply 12):
PLN which is served by Delta is only 65 miles from Sault Ste. Marie, on Interstate Highway, so its hardly a three hour drive as was alleged above.

I completely forgot about I-75 connecting the U.P. with the L.P., and didn't even think to look at any nearby airports in the L.P. while piecing together my post. I'm not from around that area and never have been there, so it was an error on my part to not fully research things.
 
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Sat Oct 08, 2011 4:56 pm

Quoting joeljack (Reply 7):
DLH is only 72 miles from Hibbing. That's nothing!!

In the winter, its quite a bit.
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cslusarc
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Sat Oct 08, 2011 11:39 pm

I live in Winnipeg and winter driving is not that bad if it isn't snowing and if there aren't strong winds with blowing snow that obscure visibility. If there is a winter storm you aren't likely to drive 10 or more miles to the nearest airport anyways?

What used to really bug me is that up here in Canada only larger cities in Southern Canada could support commercial airline service while smaller communities in the Lower 48 were lucky to have better air service than comparably sized communities in in southern Canada For example both Minot (North Dakota) and Brandon (Manitoba) have a city population near 41,000 but for YBR only offers two daily commercial flights while MOT offers significantly more air service. For a while there I used to think that YWG (Winnipeg Int'l Airport) was the only airport in Southern Manitoba could sustain commercial air service while there are dozens of airports in ND, SD and MN that could. [I found out today that Perimeter Airlines, who don't have a two letter IATA airline code, do fly once daily on two triangle routes YWG-YBR-YDN-YWG and YWG-YDN-YBR-YWG using a 19-seat Fairchild Swearingen Metroliner without code-sharing with AC or any other airline.]
--cslusarc from YWG
 
NWAROOSTER
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Sun Oct 09, 2011 12:26 am

Quoting exFWAOONW (Reply 23):

Quoting NWAROOSTER (Reply 17):

Do they still run jets RST-MSP in competition with the shuttle?

Yes, Delta has several RJs flying between RST and MSP and back. However, the there is still a bus shuttle to and from RST to MSP.   
Procrastination Is The Theft Of Time.......
 
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Sun Oct 09, 2011 3:49 am

Quoting N1120A (Reply 25):
In the winter, its quite a bit.

Things don't shut down, completely, in the winter and if the weather is bad enough where it might, it's not likely that anything will be flying, anyway.
"A committee is a group of the unprepared, appointed by the unwilling, to do the unnecessary"----Fred Allen
 
jc2354
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Mon Oct 10, 2011 1:56 am

If DLH is an EAS city, then how can it loose money? Shouldn't it at least break even?

Quoting ADent (Reply 21):
United Airlines had a reservations center in Atlanta Georgia

Out of curiosity, where was it located?
If not now, then when?
 
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Mon Oct 10, 2011 3:44 am

Quoting jc2354 (Reply 29):
If DLH is an EAS city, then how can it loose money? Shouldn't it at least break even?

I didn't realize we were talking about DLH, other than as an alternative airport for Hibbing...........?
"A committee is a group of the unprepared, appointed by the unwilling, to do the unnecessary"----Fred Allen
 
deltairlines
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Mon Oct 10, 2011 3:47 am

Quoting jc2354 (Reply 29):
If DLH is an EAS city, then how can it loose money? Shouldn't it at least break even?

Duluth is not an EAS city. Not sure if they give subsidies out, but with flights to three hubs on two major airlines, EAS wouldn't come into play.
 
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Mon Oct 10, 2011 4:02 am

Quoting cslusarc (Reply 26):
For example both Minot (North Dakota) and Brandon (Manitoba) have a city population near 41,000 but for YBR only offers two daily commercial flights while MOT offers significantly more air service

Keep in mind though, that MOT's capture area includes much of southern MB and SK. I used to work at the MOT airport, and a large percentage of passengers were either oil workers or Canadians looking to save money. Check out the parking lot at MOT sometime...a LOT of Canadian plates, especially SK.
“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, an
 
XPjets
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Mon Oct 10, 2011 4:19 am

Quoting KaiGywer (Reply 32):
Keep in mind though, that MOT's capture area includes much of southern MB and SK. I used to work at the MOT airport, and a large percentage of passengers were either oil workers or Canadians looking to save money. Check out the parking lot at MOT sometime...a LOT of Canadian plates, especially SK.

GFK is the same way. Quite a lot of people driving down from Winnipeg and other areas of southern MB. Comparing fares, it's been up to a $300 savings to fly out of GFK to MSP rather than from YWG.
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flyguy89
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Mon Oct 10, 2011 5:16 am

Quoting jetdudetim (Reply 18):
Ms. Shafer: “A lot of these big companies don’t care about the people. They just don’t care about the needs of people anymore. They only care about their bottom line. If that isn’t greed, what is it? It’s crazy.”



What a stupid, stupid thing for her to say. Get real, businesses aren't charity!

OMG she sounds exactly like one of those hack moocher characters right out of Atlas Shrugged lol. In all seriousness though, if they want air service they (or the federal government) are going to have to pay for it.
 
PGNCS
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RE: NY Times Article On Delta Cutting Hibbing Et Al.

Mon Oct 10, 2011 6:41 am

Quoting crosswinds21 (Reply 2):
From the article:

Quote:
Q. Delta says the flights are not nearly full, and that it is losing money. Why should they keep flying to Hibbing?

Ms. Shafer: “A lot of these big companies don’t care about the people. They just don’t care about the needs of people anymore. They only care about their bottom line. If that isn’t greed, what is it? It’s crazy.”

And....there goes his credibility.

Technically it's her credibility that has been shot, but your point is well taken!  
Quoting Grid (Reply 3):
The official says they have elderly people there and buses are not a good choice. And? They also complain that you have to pay for parking if you drive to the Twin Cities? I'm not sure why certain people should not have to pay for parking at the airport - millions of Americans do it regularly.

I don't grasp that either. If this was a sure-fire money maker, it wouldn't be on the chopping block.

Quoting Grid (Reply 3):
The whole accusation of greed is baseless. How long has Delta been losing money on the route? Is that greed? What if it Delta raised prices so it would not lose money on the route - would that be OK with these two?

Well it was probably more difficult politically to tackle this before Oberstar got kicked to the curb. Of course I have no way of knowing how profitable the route is, but obviously Delta isn't making money on it and does not forsee a business case for it in the future. Like you say, if they did raise prices to cover their costs these two would assuredly scream bloody murder about price gouging. Obviously THAT would make a lot of people reconsider the drive to lower priced DLH!

Quoting bennett123 (Reply 4):
If Delta were making massive profits on this route, then I MIGHT start to see his point, but they are not a registered charity.

   Brilliantly said!

Quoting bennett123 (Reply 4):
Incidentally, is this an EAS route.

And as such is a great bellweather for the fiscal irresponsibility of some if not all of EAS outside Alaska.

Quoting BlueJuice (Reply 5):
Lousy article. Big attention going to the loss of HIB-MSP and how it's about 4 hours away. Glossed over the part where DLH is about 90 minutes away.

That was going to be my key point but you beat me to it. There is zero reason to subsidize the Hibbing route with DLH this close.

Quoting joeljack (Reply 7):
DLH is only 72 miles from Hibbing. That's nothing!! DLH has DL service to MSP and DTW. UA has service to ORD. Allegiant Serves LAS, Phoenix-mesa and Orlando(seasonal). There is no way my tax dollars should go to support an airport this close to another airport with service to 3 hubs!!

Quite agree. I worked hard for my money; I expect it to be spent wisely. Of course EAS is one of the more minor problems currently in that regard.  

Quoting srbmod (Reply 8):
Quote:
Butte, Mont.; Muscle Shoals, Ala.; Waterloo, Iowa; Pierre, S.D.; Greenville and Tupelo, Miss.; Sault Sainte Marie, Mich.; and Hibbing, Minn., are among the cities where the flights are threatened.

Butte is about 70 miles from Helena, which has airline service.
Muscle Shoals is about 70 miles from Huntsville.
Waterloo is about 60 miles from Cedar Rapids
Pierre is well over two hours from commercial airport, but they still have Great Lakes service to DEN and Alliance, NE.
Greenville, MS is a 2-3 hour drive from a number of commercial airports in Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas, and Louisiana.
Tupelo is about a 70 minute drive from the Golden Triangle Regional Airport.
Sault Ste. Marie is about a 3 hour drive to the nearest airport for domestic service. There is commercial service across the border in Ontario, but not to any US cities and would require connecting within Canada in order to get to any US cities.
Hibbing has already been addressed in the thread.

In many of these cases, there is an airport within 90 minutes of them that offers similar service, and there is no need for some of these cities to retain airline service.

  

Quoting MSPNWA (Reply 9):
The staff is well known for providing good customer service, and losing local air service is a hit to their benefits of being a Delta employee. It's definitely not a positive for them or the regular users of HIB.

If they can get better jobs and flying from HIB is a deciding factor for those employees, they are free to look elsewhere. It isn't a positive for Hibbing of course, but it is a positive for Delta's bottom line apparently. Destinations are not served for the standby travel benefits of employees.

Quoting MSPNWA (Reply 9):
People simple pointing to DLH as an option really don't understand the situation.

Funny, I was in Duluth yesterday, and I actually think I DO understand the situation. (I drive to DLH from MSP frequently in all four seasons.)

Quoting MSPNWA (Reply 9):
Not all PAX that fly out of HIB are just 75 miles from DLH (Chisholm is farther away), and in the winter it really doesn't matter sometimes.

Well if distance doesen't matter in the winter they can get to DLH as easily as HIB. I'm not trying to be difficult, but millions of people in this country, including in northern tier states, live more than 75 miles from a commercial airport. They chose to live there; there is no right to air transportation.

Quoting MSPNWA (Reply 9):
Driving can be treacherous no matter how far it is

Yes it can; I agree wholeheartedly. That still in no way justifies Delta operating a route that is unprofitable.

Quoting planespotting (Reply 10):
To make an emotional argument for a purely business decision is pretty weak:

A lot of these big companies don’t care about the people. They just don’t care about the needs of people anymore. They only care about their bottom line. If that isn’t greed, what is it? It’s crazy.

Where has this lady been over the last 30 years? Delta (and other airlines, and most publicly traded companies) are in it to make money to return to their shareholders. They do it by serving passengers in and out of airports where they can make money. If they can't make money on a route, they shouldn't have to keep it going if they don't want to.

  

Quoting acidradio (Reply 14):
NW operated all of these routes through low and high fuel prices and didn't flinch. It was almost that they felt that they had a duty to the region to keep it "well connected." Then DL came in. To many it feels like if it doesn't have anything to do with ATL or JFK it is just expendable. There are politics to everything.

Delta has a duty to be profitable; if NWA operated unprofitable routes for years then Delta is finally taking steps to correct that corporate error. I do agree with you that formerly politically this would have been more difficult with Oberstar perpetually in congress.

Quoting simairlinenet (Reply 22):
A recent article (sorry, can't remember whose) uncovered the fact that a Northwest study shortly before the merger found that 25-30 such regional routes were unprofitable but worth maintaining for the political capital they generated (read: Oberstar et al.).

         Then it's good for Delta that Oberstar is gone and that they can finally offload these drains on corporate finances.

Quoting N1120A (Reply 25):

Quoting joeljack (Reply 7):
DLH is only 72 miles from Hibbing. That's nothing!!

In the winter, its quite a bit.

I live in Minnesota, and I choose to. There are many pilots I know who drive more than 75 miles to MSP every trip, year round. That's their choice. We learn to drive in the snow and learn when not to drive in the snow.

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