Yflyer
Topic Author
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Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Wed May 01, 2013 10:35 pm

Just a random question I was thinking about today: Back when BA and AF still had the Concordes, if you needed to fly between New York and somewhere in Europe other than London and Paris, would it have been faster to fly nonstop on a subsonic airliner, or take a connecting flight via LHR or CDG with the transatlantic leg being on the Concorde? Say, for example, JFK-FCO nonstop versus JFK-LHR/CDG(Concorde)-FCO, assuming the layover wasn't too long.

[Edited 2013-05-01 16:14:08]
 
AeroWesty
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Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Wed May 01, 2013 10:46 pm

Quoting Yflyer (Thread starter):
Say, for example, JFK-FCO nonstop versus JFK-LHR/CDG(Concorde)-FCO, assuming the layover wasn't too long.

Really, somewhat of a trick question. Concorde eastbound flights were daylight flights, and the only subsonic daylight flights go to London, usually arriving too late to make many meaningful connections. But, if you could make a daylight subsonic-to-subsonic connection, yes, it would be slower than a supersonic-to-subsonic daylight connection.

Compare that to waiting for the overnight nonstop flight to your ultimate destination. It really depended upon what time of day you desired to fly to make a meaningful comparison.
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Viscount724
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Wed May 01, 2013 10:57 pm

It could be faster to connect from a Concorde flight to a flight within Europe, but due to the eastbound schedules there weren't a lot of connections to many destinations.

For example, in July 1983, BA's two daily Concordes JFK-LHR arrived LHR at 6:10 PM and 10:25 PM. There would be some possible connections from the 6:10 PM flight but virtually none from the 10:25 PM arrival. The BA Concorde from IAD (3 x week) arrived at 7 PM so there would be some potential connections.

At that time, the one daily AF Concorde JFK-CDG arrived at 10:45 PM with virtually no connections anywhere without an overnight stop.

There were far more potential connections westbound due to the departure times:
BA LHR-JFK - 10:30 AM and 6 PM
BA LHR-IAD - 1 PM
AF CDG-JFK - 11 AM
 
26point2
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Wed May 01, 2013 10:59 pm

...and to go the other direction wouldn''t save much time, or any at all, most likely. LHR-JFK was a 3.5 hour leg on Concorde. JFK-SFO is a 5.5 hour flight on a good day on any random Boeing or Airbus product. Give yourself 2 hours to transfer and you've got 11 hours door-to-door. LHR-SFO non-stop on a B-747 is 11 hours also.

Not to nit-pick the OP but it's Concorde with an "e". The "e" was added to appease the French...or so I have heard.
 
Yflyer
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Wed May 01, 2013 11:15 pm

Quoting 26point2 (Reply 3):
Not to nit-pick the OP but it's Concorde with an "e".

Oops. I fixed it.
 
Viscount724
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Wed May 01, 2013 11:15 pm

Quoting 26point2 (Reply 3):
...and to go the other direction wouldn''t save much time, or any at all, most likely. LHR-JFK was a 3.5 hour leg on Concorde. JFK-SFO is a 5.5 hour flight on a good day on any random Boeing or Airbus product. Give yourself 2 hours to transfer and you've got 11 hours door-to-door. LHR-SFO non-stop on a B-747 is 11 hours also.

The original poster was referring to connections beyond LHR and CDG to/from poiints in Europe, not connections to/from U.S. domestic points. Due to the much shorter distances to most major cities in Europe, elapsed time could be several hours faster assuming a 1-hr or so connection at LHR or CDG.

[Edited 2013-05-01 16:16:58]
 
802flyguy
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Wed May 01, 2013 11:48 pm

During the BA/US marketing agreement days, US ran a dedicated DCA-JFK Express operation (with DH8s) to BA's Concorde flights, Even on a DASH with a connection, it wa faster than IAD-LHR subsonic. Not sure if PTP from the District to Dulles to Concorde to LHR was faster than IAD-LHR on the SCC, but the service did run for a while. Until the end of the BA/US agreement IIRC.

I still think the idea of connecting a DASH 8 to Concorde is a bit funny!
 
comorin
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 2:46 am

Quoting Yflyer (Reply 4):
Quoting 26point2 (Reply 3):
Not to nit-pick the OP but it's Concorde with an "e".

Oops. I fixed it.

It's not the Concorde, just Concorde.
 
baw716
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 3:19 am

OK...having done this back in 1982, I can tell you exactly:

From Seattle to London using Concorde....longer, more expensive, pain in the ass connection at JFK. It took over 10 hours to get from Seattle to London via JFK; the nonstop at that time was 8:30.

NYC to anywhere via LHR....worse.

A wonderful adventure and a once in a lifetime experience, ABSOLUTELY! As a practical flying experience...NOT.

baw716
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richcandy
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 6:33 am

Hi

In about 1996 or 97 the company that I worked for at the time had a nett fare contract (unpublished fare) from LHR via CDG to JFK with AF using Concorde on the transatlantic sector.


(Winter 96/7 schedule)
AF801 LHR CDG 0705 0910
AF002 CDG JFK 1100 0845
AF001 JFK CDG 0800 1745
AF820 CDG LHR 1900 1910

On the outbound total journey time of 6hrs 40min
On the inbound 6hrs 10min.
The connections maybe are not the greatest and there is no time saving advantage over a non-stop subsonic flight. At least in this example.

It was however cheaper than the BA LHR-JFK fare and I guess a few leisure passengers who just wanted to fly Concorde bought it.

Alex
 
chieft
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 7:12 am

I had the pleasure to fly Concorde several times.

From Germany, it made sense to fly out to JFK with Concorde and going back with a sub-sonic night flight. Did that 3 times.
In those days, JFK-Germany made no sense with Concorde, as the return flight departed at 12 a.m. already. And the connection from LHR to Germany wasn't matching - if I recall that right.

For me, it was perfect to fly out to JFK arriving in the morning, having meetings and going back in F-class with the night flight; BA offered good fares with that combination.
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cedarjet
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 7:56 am

In the 90s, when I was a travel agent at Flight World Travel, a BA Concorde flight to NY was about £3,000. Air France sold it on occasion through a consolidator (a travel agent whose actual role was to sell the tickets of one airline for less than the agreed fares, this was before open skies and deregulation - and usually an airline's consolidator or "bucket shop" was a business owned by a relative of the airline's station manager!) for £1999 return LHR-CDG-JFK.

I don't recall the exact schedule but it worked out about the same as taking BA's early morning 747 (aka the "Poor Man's Concorde"), which left around 9am and landed around midday. By Air France Concorde you left on an A300 (pre Eurostar, LHR-CDG was the world's busiest air route, BA was all L1011 then 767-300, AF was all A300 and sometimes 747) at 0900 to arr CDG 1100 then connected to Concorde which left CDG at 1300 and arrived at JFK around 1200 local. No-one booked it for speed, but for the experience. I wish I'd done it. (I did make it onto the very last bookable BA 001* on Oct 15** 2003 but at great expense - would have been great to have done an Air France one as well.)

* and came home on the very first BA 002 JFK-LCY six years later.
** the exact date of their first long haul A380 service, to LAX - see you onboard!
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icanfly
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 9:06 am

Quoting cedarjet (Reply 11):
No-one booked it for speed, but for the experience.

I remember an episode of the UK TV series "Airport" in the 1990s featured Donatella Versace flying JFK-LHR on Concorde and then continuing on to Milan by private jet. I wondered why she didn't just fly non-stop between JFK and Milan but it was clearly a prestige thing for her.
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Aesma
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 9:24 am

Quoting 26point2 (Reply 3):
Not to nit-pick the OP but it's Concorde with an "e". The "e" was added to appease the French...or so I have heard.

Re-added is more correct. The name was proposed by the British with an e, then for nationalistic reasons (France opposing the entry of the UK in the common market) the e was removed, then at the roll-out in Toulouse it was put back.

Quoting icanfly (Reply 12):
I remember an episode of the UK TV series "Airport" in the 1990s featured Donatella Versace flying JFK-LHR on Concorde and then continuing on to Milan by private jet. I wondered why she didn't just fly non-stop between JFK and Milan but it was clearly a prestige thing for her.

Well it would probably be cheaper. And clearly faster, with a private jet you can make a quick and stressless connection. And you can use a cheaper short-range jet.
New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
 
PanHAM
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 9:37 am

Economically it did not make much sense to use Concorde westbound via LHR or CDG for those located at an airport with frequent flights to the big apple, like FRA.

Same for the daylight flights eastbound, except of course for those folks who transferred to a private jet.

PanAm had, at least for some time, a morning 747 departure from JFK to LHR with a direct 727 connection to FRA arriving here around mid night. I think the flight number even was PA100.
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vfw614
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 10:10 am

Wonder what impact it had on the loads of eastbound flights if a typical choice of connecting passengers was to go westwards supersonic and eastwards subsonic.
 
PanHAM
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 10:23 am

Nothing much actually, NY residends used the second departure and spent the night in a London or Paris hotel.

The eraly departure offered evening talks and meetings.
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FoxBravo
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 11:52 am

Back in the 90s I spent a couple of summers working in a travel agency that catered to some very wealthy clients (in addition to many regular clients). I recall a few of these wealthy, often older, leisure travelers taking the Concorde from JFK to LHR in the morning, overnighting in London and then continuing on to their destinations in Italy, France, etc. the following morning. Not the fastest from door to door, but arguably a more comfortable way to travel--a 3-hour daytime flight, and a good sleep in a luxury hotel, could certainly be a nicer start to a vacation than a fitful sleep on a transatlantic flight. Plus, as others have noted, the novelty factor and prestige of the Concorde. More frequently, others did (and probably still do) the same with the BA morning subsonic service from JFK to LHR--again, not good for connections, since it arrives too late, but great if you don't like sleeping on planes and aren't in a hurry.
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knope2001
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 12:10 pm

When considering if connections to/from the SSC made sense versus a subsonic nonstop, keep in mind the relative geography and the duration of the subsonic connecting flight. Something like IAD-JFK-LHR could be a significantly faster than IAD-LHR subsonic nonstop because IAD-NYC is a short subsonic hop and flying Washington to London over NYC isn't very out of the way. Something like SEA-JFK-LHR versus SEA-LHR subsonic nonstop couldn't be advantageous because SEA-JFK is such a long subsonic trip, and SEA-JFK-LHR is a far longer distance to travel. SEA-LHR is about 9 hours, but just to get from SEA to JFK alone is about 5.5 hours.

What the SSC could open up for connections was flights at different times of the day. For example, when BA ran an early morning LHR-JFK flight it arrived around 9:00am, meaning you could get to an afternoon meeting in places like Boston, Philadelphia, Detroit, etc, where the conventional nonstop didn't usually arrive in those cities until mid afternoon. Or you could spend nearly all day in London, and the evening SSC to JFK, and still connect that night at JFK to many cities. Similarly, the daytime eastbound flight which left JFK for LHR at 1:30pm or so meant you could get a daytime connection to London via JFK from places like Dallas, Miami and Atlanta.

They key in this, however, is that it only really opened up new opportunities for a very specific segment. For a Boston businessperson who needed to be in an all-day meeting in London on Tuesday but needed to be in the office on Wednesday morning, being able to take a 7:00pm LHR-JFK-BOS connection via the SSC made that work in a way that conventional flights could not. But for anyone less time-sensitive, they'd likely never even consider the extra cost and inconvenience of this versus a regular conventional nonstop.
 
vv701
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Thu May 02, 2013 3:44 pm

The BA Summer 1993 timetable lists the following transfer flights that include BA002. They are all to destinations in the British Isles:

BA002 JFK-LHR 09:00 - 17:40. BA4672 LHR-BFS 20:30 - 21:45
BA002 JFK-LHR 09:00 - 17:40. BD780 LHR-BHX 21:00 - 21:45
BA002 JFK-LHR 09:00 - 17:40. EI717 LHR-ORK 19:10 - 20:25
BA002 JFK-LHR 09:00 - 17:40. EI173 LHR-DUB 18:45 - 19:55
BA002 JFK-LHR 09:00 - 17:40. BA4832 LHR-EDI 19:00 - 20:15
BA002 JFK-LHR 09:00 - 17:40. BA4972 LHR-GLA 1915 -20:30
BA002 JFK-LHR 09:00 - 17:40. BA4522 LHR-MAN 18:45 - 19:35
BA002 JFK-LHR 09:00 - 17:40. BA5960 LHR-NCL 20:15 - 21:20
BA002 JFK-LHR 09:00 - 17:40. EI377 LHR-SNN 2010 - 21:30

All the above transfers required a transfer from T4 to T1 at LHR.

At that time the following subsonic services also operated:

BA186 JFK-GLA 18:15 - 06:00 +1
BA182 JFK-MAN 18:00 - 06:00 +1

If we take the earliest of the above departing connecting flights at 18:45 the following same-day connections to 25 continental European destinations would also have been possible:

BA444 LHR-AMS 19:15 - 21:20
KL128 LHR-AMS 20:00 - 22:05
IB4189 LHR-BCN 19:15 - 22:10
SN612 LHR-BRU 19:40 - 21:40
BA404 LHR-BRU 19:55 - 21:55
LH4051 LHR-CGN 20:45 - 22:55
LH4045 LHR-DUS 19:00 - 21:15
BA946 LHR-DUS 19:15 - 21:30
BA910 LHR-FRA 1845 - 21:15
LH4009 LHR-FRA 19:00 - 21:30
BA732 LHR-GVA 19:05 - 21:35
SR837 LHR-GVA 20:00 22:30
SK522 LHR-GOT 18:45 - 21:40
BA972 LHR-HAM 19:30 - 22:00
LH4191 LHR-HAM 2000 - 22:30
TP459 LHR-LIS 19:25/20:00/20:30 - 22:55/23:30/23:59 (depending on day of week)
BA358 LHR-LYS 18:50 - 21:35
BA462 LHR-MAD 19:00 - 22:15
IB3167 LHR-MAD 19:30 - 22:40
AZ305 LHR-LIN 18:45 - 21:40
LH4077 LHR-MUC 20:00 - 22:40
BA958 LHR-MUC 20:15 - 22:55
BA352 LHR-NCE 19:00 - 21:55
AF3587 LHR-NCE 20:40 - 23:35
SK614 LHR-FBU 19:10 - 21:30
BA324 LHR-CDG 18:45 - 20:50 plus five later flights (2 x BA, 3 x AF)
BA858 LHR-PRG 20:30 - 23:25
AZ279 LHR-FCO 19:30 - 23:00
SK520 LHR-SVG 19:30 - 22:15
SK530 LHR-STO 19:35 - 22:55
LH4127 LHR-STR 19:30 - 22:00
AF3575 LHR-TLS 20:00 22:40
AZ1293 LHR-TRN 18:50 - 21:35
BA720 LHR-ZRH 19:00 - 21:35
SR809 LHR-ZRH 19:15 - 21:50
BA988 LHR-TXL 19:15 - 22:00

All the above except the transfer to the AMS flight would have required a transfer at LHR from T$ to T1 (BA flights) or T" (other airlines flights).

The April 1995 ABC World Airways Guide listed transfer flights off BA002 at LHR and on to the following destinations (Europe and beyond):

ADD (Day 1 only)
AMS
BCN
BFS
BOM
BUD
CDG
CPT (Days 3, 5 and 7)
DUS
EDI
FRA
GBE (Days 1 and 5)
GCI
GVA
HAM
HAJ
INV
JED
JER
JNB
KUL
LCA
LYS
MAA
MAD
MRS
MRU (Day 5 only)
MTS (Day 2 only)
MUC
NBO
NCE
NCL
ORY
PRG (Days 1, 3, 6 and 7)
RUH
SEZ (Days 3 and 7)
THR (Days 4 and 7)
TXL
ZRH

I believe (but am by no means certain) that the ABC World Airways Guide only listed transfer flights when requested to (and paid) by the airline(s). If this is correct the above list will not be exhaustive.
 
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AirlineCritic
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RE: Concorde With Connection Versus Nonstop

Fri May 03, 2013 12:26 am

The results are different based on whether you are going to/coming from a place that has a direct subsonic flight or not. If your local flight leg is needed anyway, then Concorde will speed your overall trip, assuming the schedules fit together. VV701 points to some cases where the schedules fit very well.

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