Pe@rson
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Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:53 am

Independently-owned Greek carrier Minoan Air revealed at World Routes in Abu Dhabi this week that it is poised to launch services from the United Kingdom after announcing its intent to launch commercial passenger operations from London Oxford Airport.

Minoan Air's management team has now reached a tentative deal with London Oxford Airport to base up to three Fokker 50 turboprops at the facility to inaugurate flights to Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Dublin, Edinburgh and Munich from around January 2013, subject to final agreement. More routes are under examination and Minoan Air remains in talks with London Oxford Airport over a second phase of growth.

The new routes will be operated on a mix of daily and twice daily frequencies. "The frequency and departure time for each route will be tailored to the requirement of the business passenger for each specific route."

London Oxford network will be flown under Minoan Air's own brand. In view of its expansion into European markets, the carrier will migrate to Worldticket for reservations and distribution to all major GDS platforms.

Source: http://www.routesonline.com/news/36/...ign=the-hub-world-event-daily-4-EU

Interesting development. Will be good to see what develops. Unsurprisingly, all but one (CPH) of its stated routes are desired from OXF with brief analysis/justification for each: http://www.therouteshop.com/london-oxford-airport/
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f4f3a
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Tue Oct 02, 2012 10:23 am

Mmm

Oxford is in Oxford not London!,!,!,!,

It also is very small don't see much scope for these routes .
Oxford is a very small city , it has been tried before and ended in failure .
With Heathrow just up the road I can't see this as being a contender.
 
voodoo
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Tue Oct 02, 2012 11:38 am

It's only a F-50 so it may work. Long haul connections at DUB and AMS. The Oxford BMW-Mini plant connection at Munich. The bus fare to LHR from Oxford is 24 Pounds return (never mind parking at LHR) so they can tack that on plus
'a bit' and still compete with LHR fares.
Despite the national economy, the Oxford area is still quite well off.
Manx2 seems to be working from Oxford to IOM and Jersey despite BHX competition.

[Edited 2012-10-02 04:43:48]
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Tue Oct 02, 2012 11:39 am

Interesting to see this progressing, I'm staggered that some of these routes haven't been picked up already. I also know they aren't/weren't the only ones looking at OXF-EDI.

Quoting f4f3a (Reply 1):
It also is very small don't see much scope for these routes .
Oxford is a very small city

It's not the size of the city you need to look at, it's the size of the market. Oxford is one of the UK's top tourist destinations and has a large number of leading companies based in the city and wider area.

Quoting f4f3a (Reply 1):
it has been tried before and ended in failure .

Has it? Oxford to Edinburgh was tried, and would have been a huge success - I personally saw the advance bookings on that route, many flights were sold out even before the first service had taken off. That's unheard of in UK domestic aviation.

Quoting f4f3a (Reply 1):
With Heathrow just up the road I can't see this as being a contender.

It's 50 miles and an hour, usually more in traffic. And how many other very small cities/towns that far out have a dedicated coach link every 30 minutes to Heathrow - that says a lot about the propensity to fly in Oxford.


Dan  
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 03, 2012 11:45 am

Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 3):
Oxford to Edinburgh was tried, and would have been a huge success - I personally saw the advance bookings on that route, many flights were sold out even before the first service had taken off.
OXF-EDI failed because of the "dodgy" operator not the route. I live on the M40 corridor closer to LHR than OXF but it would be easy to sell me on OXF over LHR with a quick small terminal to transit through and cheap/free car parking.

I've been looking forward to reliable OXF-EDI-OXF for many years ... where do I book?  

Edit ...

Checking the Minoan website: "Ticket sales for these routes will be available both online and from travel agencies by the middle of November 2012." I'll be looking for sales starting.

[Edited 2012-10-03 04:53:54]
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MHG
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 03, 2012 1:02 pm

Well, OXF-MUC would be a rather long route for a F50 ...

Although flight times of 2 - 2.5 hrs might still be bearable compared to other similarily sized turboprops and overall travel time to MUC is still likely to be less than shutteling to LHR and flying from there ...
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voodoo
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 03, 2012 2:31 pm

Quoting MHG (Reply 5):

Well, OXF-MUC would be a rather long route for a F50 ...

Interestingly, according to the Great Circle router, both CPH and MUC are 629 miles from Oxford-Kidlington.
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 03, 2012 2:46 pm

What is OXF going to do about car parking/terminal/Car hire etc...as its always been mainly GA/Biz I presume these need to be sorted out if passinger numbers are really going to improve?
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 03, 2012 3:27 pm

Quoting GCT64 (Reply 4):
OXF-EDI failed because of the "dodgy" operator not the route.

Exactly.

Quoting GCT64 (Reply 4):
Checking the Minoan website: "Ticket sales for these routes will be available both online and from travel agencies by the middle of November 2012." I'll be looking for sales starting.

Hopefully. Three working days later and there is no official announcement, press release, tweet etc... from the airport concerning what is their biggest and most eagerly awaited news ever. I don't doubt that the market is there and that an operation can work, but something isn't right with this. EDI and DUB services were apparently very close, but it wasn't supposed to be Minoan announcing them.


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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 03, 2012 5:54 pm

I'll believe it when I see it, I suppose. And then, if I trust it, I'll book it.!

Quoting acelanzarote (Reply 7):
What is OXF going to do about car parking/terminal/Car hire etc...as its always been mainly GA/Biz I presume these need to be sorted out if passinger numbers are really going to improve?

Apparently there's an Enterprise car rental place at OXF (you can be in town in 10 minutes), or it's less than 25 minutes to the centre of town by bus (far cheaper and you don't have to park!). Local travellers I assume will get there by taxi or bus. Let's face it - Oxford's never* going to be LHR, so it can probably get away with only a bit more than the capacity it has already.

*though nothing surprises me any more...
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Pe@rson
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Thu Oct 04, 2012 7:34 am

Here's ATW's article which contains some new details: http://atwonline.com/airports-routes...al-minoan-air-launch-uk-start-1003
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Thu Oct 04, 2012 3:42 pm

EDI, DUB and AMS make sense but I'm not sure about CPH. Who are the target market for this flight?

Quoting f4f3a (Reply 1):
With Heathrow just up the road I can't see this as being a contender.

Many people find LHR a bit of a nightmare to fly through, especially for short haul. Bad traffic, expensive parking, long queues, delays...etc. OXF will work the same way as LCY, it will provide a much easier and quicker experience for passengers.
 
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Thu Oct 04, 2012 7:59 pm

Quoting KaiTak747 (Reply 11):
OXF will work the same way as LCY, it will provide a much easier and quicker experience for passengers.

  

I just hope they will significantly improve access by public transport and not limit themselves to passengers with a car ...
There´s a railway line passing along the airport - why not offering a stop as soon as pasenger numbers warrant it ?
(no station needed just a stop !)

[Edited 2012-10-04 13:03:48]
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Thu Oct 04, 2012 8:37 pm

Quoting MHG (Reply 12):
I just hope they will significantly improve access by public transport and not limit themselves to passengers with a car ...
There´s a railway line passing along the airport - why not offering a stop as soon as pasenger numbers warrant it ?
(no station needed just a stop !)

I don't think the numbers involved would be significant enough to merit a stop, given that even the stop at a much larger airport, Durham Tees Valley, is practically unused and few trains stop there any more. Were Kidlington further from Oxford then I think the village on its own could easily sustain a rail link without the airport, but it's just too close to make a decent case for it.

Plenty of buses already go from Oxford to Kidlington (daytime service is every 5 minutes), on bus lanes practically all the way, but only about a quarter of those go as far as the airport. They're generally cleaner and more accessible than the local trains. Arguably all it would take is for more of those services to be extended to the airport and the demand for public transport should be covered.
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Thu Oct 04, 2012 9:36 pm

Transportation from OXF is generally no problem. Cabs are readily available from Kidlington and Oxford. Buses are a hassle since there are generally no buses between 10am and 15pm but I'm guessing this might change when/if they get more traffic. Parking is a joke. With Eurocopter and CAE/OAA it's full from 7.30-8am and the dedicated parking for pax is about 50 spaces. Would be interesting if they could finally extend the runway as well and add an ILS for RWY 01 too.. I've seen a BBJ land and take off at OXF but it must be quite tight performance wise for a normal 737 with a profitable load.

I'm quite interested how they will handle the extra traffic too.. It is very busy as it is with a lot of training going on all the time.
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Fri Oct 05, 2012 6:58 pm

Quoting f4f3a (Reply 1):
Oxford is in Oxford not London!,!,!,!,

But it is marketed as London/Oxford.
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Sun Oct 07, 2012 1:50 am

Im a little confused as to why Minoan Air would operate these flights. I think it would fare better if launched by Flybe who the public are more aware of and have some backing, maybe using their Loganair subsidiary with Saab's or Dornier's to test the waters before going Q400.
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MHG
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Sun Oct 07, 2012 7:45 am

Quoting YVRLTN (Reply 16):
Im a little confused as to why Minoan Air would operate these flights. I think it would fare better if launched by Flybe who the public are more aware of and have some backing, maybe using their Loganair subsidiary with Saab's or Dornier's to test the waters before going Q400.

Well, it´s most likely due to FlyBE not being interested.
(probably doesn´t fit into their actual strategy for whatever reason ...)
And on the local airline market there´s simply no one left that would be able (aircraftsize plus financial backing) to start such a "venture" ...

[Edited 2012-10-07 00:48:09]
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Sun Oct 07, 2012 8:51 am

Could Eastern have launched a few routes if there was that much potential
 
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Mon Oct 15, 2012 12:36 pm

Minoan Air's facebook site has been updated:

"The new London Oxford Airport airline, Minoan Air, will commence commercial flights during the last week of January 2013. Stay tuned for the schedule"

So we should get the initial schedule soon.
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Pe@rson
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Mon Oct 15, 2012 12:59 pm

To me, it’s highly conspicuous – and peculiar – that nothing has been mentioned on OXF’s website.
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Mon Oct 15, 2012 1:19 pm

Quoting YVRLTN (Reply 16):
I think it would fare better if launched by Flybe who the public are more aware of and have some backing, maybe using their Loganair subsidiary with Saab's or Dornier's to test the waters before going Q400.
Quoting MHG (Reply 17):
Well, it´s most likely due to FlyBE not being interested.
(probably doesn´t fit into their actual strategy for whatever reason ...)

FlyBe were apparently very close to launching EDI with LoganAir Saab 340s. My understanding is that this deal was several years in the making, and that Minoan have essentially crashed the party at the last minute.

Quoting flycro (Reply 18):
Could Eastern have launched a few routes if there was that much potential

I think it would be pretty marginal with their aircraft. Neither the Saab 2000 or Jetstream 41 have particularly good performance when it's hot, hence why the planned OXF-PMI charters by Eastern's S2000 were going to be departing first thing in the morning. Even then they were badly weight restricted and ended up being cancelled.

On the topic of weight restriction, good luck getting an F50 to MUC or CPH with a half decent load in summer.

Quoting GCT64 (Reply 19):
Minoan Air's facebook site has been updated:

Yet still no press release from Oxford, not even a tweet. I don't think they are happy bunnies with this.


Dan  
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Pe@rson
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Mon Oct 15, 2012 1:31 pm

Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 21):
Yet still no press release from Oxford, not even a tweet.
Quoting Pe@rson (Reply 20):
To me, it’s highly conspicuous – and peculiar – that nothing has been mentioned on OXF’s website.

I emailed OXF a week or so ago to see if they would disclose anything. Unsurprisingly, they did not.
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Mon Oct 15, 2012 1:49 pm

Quoting GCT64 (Reply 19):
Minoan Air's facebook site has been updated:

"The new London Oxford Airport airline, Minoan Air, will commence commercial flights during the last week of January 2013. Stay tuned for the schedule"

So we should get the initial schedule soon.

I doubt AMS will commence in January as the AMS slot allocation lists doesn't show any slots for Minoan Air for W12
 
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Mon Oct 15, 2012 2:13 pm

Quote:
On the topic of weight restriction, good luck getting an F50 to MUC or CPH with a half decent load in summer.
Quote:
Interestingly, according to the Great Circle router, both CPH and MUC are 629 miles from Oxford-Kidlington.



From their website: http://minoanair.com/en/About

Minoan has the flexibility to promptly respond to any charter requests, within the range of the a/c, which on full payload can fly 930 nautical miles nonstop, destinations that include Warsaw, Zurich, Milan, Algiers, Cairo, Beirut, Kiev and other destinations from Athens.

It appears that these a/c can make the trip without weight restrictions!

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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Mon Oct 15, 2012 2:26 pm

Quoting b735 (Reply 24):
Minoan has the flexibility to promptly respond to any charter requests, within the range of the a/c, which on full payload can fly 930 nautical miles nonstop, destinations that include Warsaw, Zurich, Milan, Algiers, Cairo, Beirut, Kiev and other destinations from Athens.

It appears that these a/c can make the trip without weight restrictions!

No, because that doesn't factor runway distance, which is a limiting factor at Oxford. I have performance charts for the F50, the aircraft will be weight restricted, badly in summer. Hot day with bad winds and you'd be lucky to shift 20 passengers and bags to MUC or CPH. Even on an average spring/summer/autumn day (as nowadays these seasons are pretty indistinguishable in the UK) you will be looking at 30-40 passengers maximum.


Dan  
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Tue Oct 16, 2012 4:15 am

Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 21):
Yet still no press release from Oxford, not even a tweet. I don't think they are happy bunnies with this.

Well, speaking for myself, if I have a business meeting or must get to event to attend, I think I would be reluctant booking with these guys too much in advance. I think the story would be different with BE as at least they are established and recogniused brand even to the average Joe and I wouldnt be surprised if OXF will feel many potential pax agree with me.

Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 21):

FlyBe were apparently very close to launching EDI with LoganAir Saab 340s

Sounds a lot more sensible  
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Tue Oct 30, 2012 6:42 pm

Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 21):
Yet still no press release from Oxford, not even a tweet. I don't think they are happy bunnies with this.
Dan
Quoting Pe@rson (Reply 22):
I emailed OXF a week or so ago to see if they would disclose anything. Unsurprisingly, they did not.

Still nothing from OXF about these flights ..... meanwhile on the Minoan Facebook page:

Malcolm Ross McFadyen: Have you actually told 'London' Oxford Airport about this? They are normally very quick at updating their website with new route announcements and, as far as I can see, there is no mention of Minoan Air on the airport website.

Minoan Air: Malcolm, the management of the airport is fully aware about our plans. We have met several times and we jointly prepare the pre-launch activities. As a matter of fact the airport is the first entity we inform about any detail concerning our operation.
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Tue Oct 30, 2012 7:40 pm

Quoting YVRLTN (Reply 26):
Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 21):

FlyBe were apparently very close to launching EDI with LoganAir Saab 340s

Sounds a lot more sensible  

I have to agree. Flybe operated by Loganair makes far more sense for the route to EDI from OXF. The SF3 or even a Scot Airways D328 would be perfect size to start a route like EDI and a D328 would be a better choice of aircraft to operate all the routes announced . Also BE are a well established airline that nearly everyone has heard of. Unlike Minoan.
 
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 31, 2012 2:01 pm

Quoting GCT64 (Reply 27):
Still nothing from OXF about these flights ..... meanwhile on the Minoan Facebook page:

Interesting, but I'm unconvinced. They'd be aware of the plans from reading the online reports, and to me 'several meetings' for an operation like this just doesn't sound like enough to have gone much beyond the icebreaker/exploratory stages.

Quoting GSTBA (Reply 28):
Also BE are a well established airline that nearly everyone has heard of. Unlike Minoan.

Established being key. I'm sure Oxford are thinking of their reputation here; in a few months time they don't want to be informing customers about another airline collapse. They need to have consumer confidence not just in the carrier but in their facility.


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bjorn14
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 31, 2012 2:15 pm

A little bit OT but I heard that OXF was going to extend the runway. Any news on that?
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 31, 2012 2:24 pm

Quoting bjorn14 (Reply 30):
A little bit OT but I heard that OXF was going to extend the runway. Any news on that?

Not for now, but I believe they will eventually. They have recently widened the runway and upgraded from being a Cat 2C aerodrome to cat 3C, meaning they can increase the declared runway to 1,799m without widening it to 45m. This is a logical plan over the next 10-20 years.


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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 31, 2012 2:29 pm

Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 31):
PlymSpotter

I know there is a Lineage 1000 based there but that's a far cry (weight-wise) from a loaded E190.
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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 31, 2012 3:37 pm

Quoting bjorn14 (Reply 32):
I know there is a Lineage 1000 based there but that's a far cry (weight-wise) from a loaded E190.

Unless they want to utilise the upper extent of their range then the E-Jets, especially the 170 and 190, aren't practically limited from OXF in passenger configuration. Even in max pax config they are good for around 1000nm, which practically covers all the scheduled/charter routes OXF could support in the near future. An extension's main benefit would be in reducing the range penalty experienced by some long haul business jets, and potentially facilitating scheduled 737/A320 operations.


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RE: Minoan Air States Plan To Start At Oxford W/F50s

Wed Oct 31, 2012 5:10 pm

Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 29):
Interesting, but I'm unconvinced. They'd be aware of the plans from reading the online reports, and to me 'several meetings' for an operation like this just doesn't sound like enough to have gone much beyond the icebreaker/exploratory stages.

I think that is a very fair assessment. The OXF website covers every little detail of the Manx flights (last updated on 17 Oct with a detailed news item about the winter schedule) and yet doesn't mention the Minoan flights (ticket sales due to start in Mid-Nov) - that just doesn't sound like OXF are being willing and supportive, there must be a reason for this.
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