TC957
Topic Author
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Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:10 pm

With the QF/EK joint service now up and running, every evening there are 4 A380's - 2 QF and 2 EK - departing LHR to DXB within a couple of hours of each other, on top of the BA service. VS also operates overnight to DXB.
With the big reduction now in capacity LHR - SIN, would VS not be better off serving SIN and dropping DXB ?
I know they code-share on SQ, but I would have thought they will make better $ serving SIN in their own right as well.
Your thoughts please.
 
theginge
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:13 pm

Presumably though as SIN is further than DXB it is not a simple one for one swap....
 
Motorhussy
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:20 pm

And why not continue on to MEL and make two Australian destinations they serve? Particularly now with DL purchasing SQ's shareholding, VS are no longer beholden to the strategic whims of Temasek.
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flyingalex
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:22 pm

I think it's a reasonable question. I would think that given the acquisition of SQ's stake in VS by DL, the VS codeshare on SQ services is probably not long for this world. There is quite a lot of demand between London and Singapore, and while QF mostly carried through-traffic to/from Australia, there will certainly be fewer seats available on the route in the future.

There have also been rumours that BA are planning to extend their daily SIN service that does not presently carry on to Australia (BA11/BA12 vs BA15/BA16, which continues to SYD) to Jakarta, which would reduce seats available to O/D pax further.

Who knows what VS may do in the future, but I think they could do a lot worse than LHR-SIN.
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jfk777
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:44 pm

Why didn't Virgin start flying to Singapore when they were in the SQ family ? Flying there probably makes sense for them, better late then never.
 
infinit
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 2:03 am

Definitely. I'm sure there's more than enough room with QF's exit.
 
DeltaB717
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 2:17 am

Is it not a fair enough suggestion that the SIN capacity already provided by SQ and BA would present a similar situation to the DXB capacity provided by EK, QF and BA? Not to mention VS probably would struggle to compete with SQ, especially if it attempted a MEL tag?

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 4):

From what I heard it was part of the agreement between VS and SQ at the time, alongside the (non-)use of the Virgin brand for international flights.
 
changyou
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 3:14 am

SQ n VS code share on all SQ's SIN-LHR vv. VS metal would be better use else where than deploying to SIN as VS already have market shares through SQ. Maybe BKK-MEL or something. Despite DL taking over SQ's shares there are still no news that SQ n VS are de coding. Code sharing can still exist between the two. I remembered VS n MH used to code on KUL-LHR but the agreement was dropped instantly after SQ jumped in bed with VS. Well...Looking at SQ's strategy it seems they are keeping the Virgin group as close partners. Australia/America/UK
 
anstar
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 7:08 am

I would say they would be better adding GRU/GIG than SIN.
 
flyingalex
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 8:14 am

Quoting anstar (Reply 8):
I would say they would be better adding GRU/GIG than SIN.

That may not be so easy - it depends how many services/carriers the current UK/Brazil bilateral allows.

Quoting DeltaB717 (Reply 6):
Is it not a fair enough suggestion that the SIN capacity already provided by SQ and BA would present a similar situation to the DXB capacity provided by EK, QF and BA?

It's a different situation. On LHR-DXB you previously had:

EK (4x daily, mostly A380)
BA (2-3x daily, depending on season, usually a mix of 747, 767, 777)
VS (1 daily A346)

QF will be adding two A380s per day. Yes, quite a few seats will be blocked by passengers continuing on to Australia, but QF are still going to have plenty of spare capacity on the LHR-DXB sector.


In contrast, this is the situation on the SIN route:

SQ (4x daily, mix of A380 and B77W)
BA (2x daily, one B744 and one B77W which continues to SYD)

They have lost the two QF A380s which now go via Dubai.

The question is whether or not the spare capacity in two A380s carrying mostly through-pax from Australia equals the dedicated capacity of one A346 (or perhaps even A343).

Quoting DeltaB717 (Reply 6):
Not to mention VS probably would struggle to compete with SQ, especially if it attempted a MEL tag?

Who said anything about a MEL tag?
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skipness1E
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 8:50 am

EK is five A380s and QF two giving a group offering of seven A388s per day. If you add BA at twice daily and Royal Brunei as well, that's a lot of capacity for VS to compete with on point to point. I am not sure SQ would fare any better, surely with DL on board they'll be focussing West.
 
TC957
Topic Author
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 9:09 am

Why do VS have to focus only West not East ? With SQ stopping the non-stop EWR-SIN later this year then with clever timings VS could tap into some of the premium NYC-SIN connecting traffic with DL's help.
I just think yields and loads would be healthier to SIN, sometimes fares to DXB are less than they are to the Canary Islands or destinations like Sharm el Sheikh.
 
UAEflyer
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 9:36 am

How about LHR-DXB-SIN
 
eljas
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 10:50 am

Quoting flyingalex (Reply 3):
There is quite a lot of demand between London and Singapore, and while QF mostly carried through-traffic to/from Australia, there will certainly be fewer seats available on the route in the future.

The loss of QF on the route certainly opens up the market for another airline. However, I would think that it is more likely that the excess capacity will be filled by either BA or SQ.

I wouldn't be at all surprised if BA added another daily flight at some point soon. I fly the route quite regularly (before the loss of QF) and the plane has always been full in Y, W and J (not sure about F, never had the pleasure). I can also see BA11/12 going A380 once BA have a few more of the birds.

SQ are already 4 daily, and I'm not sure if they have the slot capacity at LHR to add another, but if it was worth it they would certainly get a slot in no time. Not sure if they will though, I've been on SQ A380s running the route half empty.
 
anstar
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 11:33 am

Quoting flyingalex (Reply 9):
QF will be adding two A380s per day. Yes, quite a few seats will be blocked by passengers continuing on to Australia, but QF are still going to have plenty of spare capacity on the LHR-DXB sector.

But are the QF timings attractive to leisure travelers which I believe make up a chunk of the VS LHR-DXB route via Virgin Hols?
 
LX138
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 11:46 am

Ok so the reason they wouldn't is because it does not fit with the current VS strategy. VS focus largely on mid and high yield leisure destinations with many, if not most - based on seat only sales, VFR and Virgin Holiday and partner agency packages to populate those flights.

DXB - fit's this criteria - yes there is a lot of competition on the route but EK, BI etc. focus on transfer traffic and not terminating passengers at DXB like VS do.

SIN - yes there is demand, and there is VFR, there is also a good amount of business traffic, but the key is that it's not a leisure route city pair, and Virgin Holidays certainly don't offer much in Singapore either. Competition on the route is also rife.

Quoting changyou (Reply 7):
I remembered VS n MH used to code on KUL-LHR but the agreement was dropped instantly after SQ jumped in bed with VS.

Completely incorrect, VS and MH codeshared for many years after SQ bought the stake.

Quoting TC957 (Reply 11):
Why do VS have to focus only West not East ?

The Virgin brand is far stronger in North America (west) than it is in the 'East' - VS are trying to launch routes now where there is demand from both ends of the service and not solely ex LON. This has been discussed with the muting of a GIG flight (where currently there is too weak a brand presence ex-GIG) - although I think this flight will happen someday.
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ManekS
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 11:47 am

VS could potentially partner with SIA, who do not have slots to expand at Heathrow. Together, four SQ + one VS flight would match EK's daily frequency out of LHR. But it'd be ironic if this partnership were to materialize now, after SQ selling their Virgin shares to Delta.

[Edited 2013-04-02 04:50:06]
 
skipness1E
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 12:55 pm

Quoting ManekS (Reply 16):
VS could potentially partner with SIA, who do not have slots to expand at Heathrow.

Singapore have just obtained a slot pair from South African's dropped LHR-CPT route. The new SQ306 / 305 is mainly a B77W though so capacity is not maxxed out.
 
caaardiff
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 4:26 pm

Could VS increase their presence in Australia by operating LHR-DXB-PER.
EK being able to operate DXB-PER with huge feed from Europe and further, VS could provide feed from East Coast USA via LHR and DXB.
PER has a number of international routes across Asia and DXB being x3 daily.

Would there be issue's with traffic rights?
 
phunc
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 5:45 pm

Probably better off switching DXB to AUH. Tie up and interline with Virgin Oz which will offer a non stop to MEL (and BNE?). Maybe strike a deal with EY for local destinations?
 
anstar
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 6:20 pm

Quoting phunc (Reply 19):
Probably better off switching DXB to AUH.

But the problem is that there is not much O&D traffic on that route.
 
LondonCity
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 9:02 pm

This is a timely thread. Just a few hours ago, the Financial Times reported that VS was looking to start a joint venture with AF, KL and AZ regarding new flight links to the Middle East, Asia and Africa.

The main story is behind the FT's paywall. But here's a summary:

http://news168.co.uk/news/virgin-eyes-air-franceklm-tieup
 
anstar
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RE: Should VS Drop DXB And Start SIN?

Tue Apr 02, 2013 9:06 pm

Not surprising really. Once the Delta JV is bedded down and the little red operation - I think it is a given VS will join Skyteam.