MrBuzzcut
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Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 3:44 am

I'm wondering why there is only one airline, (UA) operating flights from the US to GUM. With the Marines making the move from Okinawa over the next few years, you'd think somebody, especially an island/Asia focused airline like HA would have moved into the market by now, even as a stopover for flights to elsewhere in Asia. Are load factors weak enough on UA that nobody else is willing to compete?
 
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TWA772LR
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 3:48 am

DL also flies to GUM, but from Japan, a former NW route. NW even had Airlink service in the Marianas for a few years.
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MrBuzzcut
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 4:00 am

I guess I should clarify, I was talking about flights from the US to Guam, without a stopover in another country. Stopping over in Japan requires going through customs (hence, a passport and extra hassle) that flying from HI or the mainland does not. I'm sure the airlines' beancounters have considered it, I just wonder what makes not viable, especially for a carrier like HA.
 
Q
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 4:04 am

Long time ago, I don't remember name of airline was nonstop L:AX-Guam on a DC-8 back in 1980's. Isn't? What name of airline was?

Q
 
hnl-jack
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 4:06 am

HA many years ago tried it, but CO, now UA really has a lock on the market. The yields and high loads make their flights between HNL-GUM very equitable. However, not enough traffic to support two carriers without both of them seeing red ink.
 
timpdx
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 4:16 am

You can transit Japan sans customs. Its something called a transit without isa, something we Americans need to learn about, see other threads about how backwards the US is inthis regard. Back to the topic, transiting Japan s no biggie.
 
Braniff747SP
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 4:21 am

Quoting MrBuzzcut (Reply 2):
Stopping over in Japan requires going through customs (hence, a passport and extra hassle) that flying from HI or the mainland does not.

Japan is not America.

Only we have such an arcane system for transiting passengers.
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LAXintl
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 4:27 am

Maybe you don't realize how small the market to/from Guam really is.

In all of 2012 only 253,242 folks traveled to or from Guam from all the 50 states. That's less than 350 daily each-way. It seems UA has this well covered with its HNL nonstop and island-hopper services or even via Japan for those seeking direct nonstops to places like NYC or DC.

In comparison Guam had over 2.5 million foreign arrivals.

The Guam-US market is tiny compared to what the Guam-Far East market is.

So yes DL or HA could try a HNL-GUM run of their own, but demand is pretty small, and even with long term military build up is not going to magically grow by any multiples.

[Edited 2013-05-23 21:32:42]
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RWA380
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 7:23 am

Quoting HNL-Jack" class="quote" target="_blank">HNL-Jack (Reply 4):
HA many years ago tried it,

Wasn't HNL-GUM also operated by AQ with wet leased DC-10's? Aloha Pacific, IIRC. And of course before that was BN.
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johnclipper
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 9:06 am

Quoting timpdx (Reply 5):
You can transit Japan sans customs. Its something called a transit without isa, something we Americans need to learn about, see other threads about how backwards the US is inthis regard. Back to the topic, transiting Japan s no biggie.

But will DL let you board the flight in the U.S. without a passport in hand even if your final destination is GUM?
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b737100
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 9:19 am

When TWA had the round the world service, There was a B707 flight that flew LAX/HNL/GUM as the 1st two legs, then on to OKA I think........
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COSPN
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 9:41 am

DL and UA both serve Guam an Island of 160,000 ... Guam has the most airline service per capita of any US city
 
Cubsrule
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 12:31 pm

Quoting JohnClipper (Reply 9):
But will DL let you board the flight in the U.S. without a passport in hand even if your final destination is GUM?

No. How would that work an arrival in GUM with a planeful of Japanese tourists who need to clear immigration and customs?
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tortugamon
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 12:35 pm

Quoting COSPN (Reply 11):
Guam has the most airline service per capita of any US city

That would be a great stat if it was true. Just not sure it is. 1.3 Million enplanements vs SFO 880k population with 44.5 Million emplanements.

tortugamon
 
MIflyer12
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 12:35 pm

Quoting timpdx (Reply 5):
Its something called a transit without isa, something we Americans need to learn about, see other threads about how backwards the US is inthis regard.

The U.S. permitted sterile international transit before 9/11. You remember the significance of 9/11 to the airline industry and national security, right?
 
Braniff747SP
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 12:50 pm

Quoting MIflyer12 (Reply 14):
You remember the significance of 9/11 to the airline industry and national security, right?

Tell me--and how exactly does forcing everyone through customs help national security?
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adamh8297
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 12:52 pm

Quoting COSPN (Reply 11):
DL and UA both serve Guam an Island of 160,000 ... Guam has the most airline service per capita of any US city

It technically is a hub as well.

Also not mentioned here, from the east coast its a bit shorter getting to guam via NRT.

EWR-NRT-GUM = 8290
EWR-HNL-GUM = 8763

BOS-EWR-NRT-GUM = 8490
BOS-SFO-HNL-GUM = 8903

Also - if you are travelling in the front of the plane any mainland US-NRT flight has some sort of lie flat while the GUM flights from HNL do not.
Airlines flown: A3, AA, AC, AM, BA, B6, CO, DL, EA, EL, IB, LH, MI, MQ, NH, NW, NZ, PE, QF, S4, SQ, TP, UA, US, VS, WN
 
FlyingSicilian
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 2:55 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 7):
Maybe you don't realize how small the market to/from Guam really is.

In all of 2012 only 253,242 folks traveled to or from Guam from all the 50 states. That's less than 350 daily each-way. It seems UA has this well covered with its HNL nonstop and island-hopper services or even via Japan for those seeking direct nonstops to places like NYC or DC.

Also several people going to and from Guam fly Space A on military aircraft daily and they would not likely change to a new airline when they can fly basically free.
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roseflyer
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 5:09 pm

The GUM-US Mainland market is very small. GUM is popular for Asia tourists, but way too far for most Americans. The military isn't a big enough customer to support more than 2 US airlines. Has anyone ever met an American that took a vacation to Guam (excluding exotic scuba travel to outlying islands)?

Quoting Braniff747SP (Reply 6):
Quoting MrBuzzcut (Reply 2):
Stopping over in Japan requires going through customs (hence, a passport and extra hassle) that flying from HI or the mainland does not.

Japan is not America.

Only we have such an arcane system for transiting passengers.

He was correct. You don't have to go through customs in Japan, but you do have to go through the extra hassle of customs and immigration in the United States upon arrival since you came from an international flight.

Quoting timpdx (Reply 5):
You can transit Japan sans customs. Its something called a transit without isa, something we Americans need to learn about, see other threads about how backwards the US is inthis regard. Back to the topic, transiting Japan s no biggie.

Transiting in Japan requires a passport and going through immigration upon arrival back in the US, which is not required from HNL. However there is a partial level of immigration control and customs control on the GUM-States flights since you have to prove residency since Guam has a different visa waiver program.
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milesrich
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 5:37 pm

I flew GUM-HNL in April 1975 on a PA B3F, just prior to the fall of Saigon, where the flight originated. Worst flight I was ever on. I flew into GUM on JAL from HND. At the time, GUM was a big tourist destination for the Japanese. Only other service I know of at the time was the 727 Island Hopper on CO-Air Micronesia from HNL, and they were also operating their DC-6B, N90961, on a few routes from GUM to islands that could not accommodate the 727.
 
rutankrd
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 5:50 pm

Quoting MIflyer12 (Reply 14):
The U.S. permitted sterile international transit before 9/11. You remember the significance of 9/11 to the airline industry and national security, right?

Yes but that most tragic of events occurred using DOMESTIC flights right !
 
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 5:57 pm

Quoting Braniff747SP (Reply 6):
Only we have such an arcane system for transiting passengers.

I seem to recall that before 9-11 we were pretty normal in regards to transit visas.

Quoting Braniff747SP (Reply 15):
Tell me--and how exactly does forcing everyone through customs help national security?

Apparently it helps a great deal--just ask TSA and our wonderfully intelligent people in Washington!! Don't ask ME, I can't even imagine how it might help. I'm pretty familiar with how it HURTS our country though. Money spent during in-transit layovers gets spent in another country! (Oh dear, don't let me even get started on this topic!!!)

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 18):
Transiting in Japan requires a passport and going through immigration upon arrival back in the US, which is not required from HNL. However there is a partial level of immigration control and customs control on the GUM-States flights since you have to prove residency since Guam has a different visa waiver program.

Going from GUM to the US is more practical going through NRT. When you get to NRT you go through security and show your passport, then wait for your flight in the departure area. Going through HNL requires you to go through a simple immigration pre clearance in GUM, but then after arriving in HNL you have to go to bag claim, pick up your bag, go through customs, recheck the bag, go through the security line, then back to the gate!!! I suspect this idea came from those same people in Washington!
 
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 6:39 pm

Quoting copter808 (Reply 21):
Apparently it helps a great deal--just ask TSA and our wonderfully intelligent people in Washington!! Don't ask ME, I can't even imagine how it might help. I'm pretty familiar with how it HURTS our country though. Money spent during in-transit layovers gets spent in another country! (Oh dear, don't let me even get started on this topic!!!)

One of the countries that has benefitted the most is Panama.
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steex
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 6:55 pm

Quoting MrBuzzcut (Reply 2):
Stopping over in Japan requires going through customs (hence, a passport and extra hassle) that flying from HI or the mainland does not.
Quoting JohnClipper (Reply 9):
But will DL let you board the flight in the U.S. without a passport in hand even if your final destination is GUM?

I guess there is some inconvenience with going through customs on arrival from Japan (though it's not going to be that big of a deal when you consider the travel time required in the first place), but I can't imagine there are many people who travel from the US50 to GUM that don't already have a passport anyhow.
 
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 7:02 pm

SFO Metro is much more than 880,000 you have to factor in everyone living within driving disitance of the airport, not just the city limits of SFO.. Guam metro is 160,000 bay area 7,000,000 plus so about 44 times more 1,300,000 x 44 is 57 mil
 
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 7:38 pm

Quoting MIflyer12 (Reply 14):
The U.S. permitted sterile international transit before 9/11. You remember the significance of 9/11 to the airline industry and national security, right?

That still exists in ANC, and JFK allowed that for the pax of JL's NRT-JFK-GRU long after 9/11. Proof that sterile transit has absolutely nothing to do with national security and everything to do with money and paranoia. The airports simply do not have the weight both political and financial to fight the Federal government on this and other stupid rules.
There's absolutely no reason why someone flying on NZ1/2 between AKL and LHR has to clear immigration at LAX. Period. Especially when LAX already has a sterile zone dedicated to this flight.
 
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CV880
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 7:48 pm

Quoting COSPN (Reply 24):
SFO Metro is much more than 880,000 you have to factor in everyone living within driving disitance of the airport, not just the city limits of SFO.. Guam metro is 160,000 bay area 7,000,000 plus so about 44 times more 1,300,000 x 44 is 57 mil

Plus SFO is in San Mateo County, not San Francisco.
 
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legacyins
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 7:59 pm

I find amazing how this topic has drifted so far from the original question on why only one US Airline to Guam.  
 
roseflyer
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 8:44 pm

Quoting legacyins (Reply 27):
I find amazing how this topic has drifted so far from the original question on why only one US Airline to Guam.

True. However the O/P was wrong because there are actually 2 US carriers in GUM, but correct in that only one has nonstop service to the US from GUM. Also, most destinations in Asia only have 2 operators since the only 2 other airlines flying to Asia are AA and HA, and they don't have particularly large route networks in Asia. There are the same number of US operators in HKG as there are in GUM and only one US carrier with nonstop service to the states from HKG.
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BoeingGuy
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 8:55 pm

Quoting cv880 (Reply 26):
Plus SFO is in San Mateo County, not San Francisco.

I believe that administratively speaking, SFO is considered part of the city and country of San Francisco, as are the Farrelon Islands and some place up near Hetch Hetchy. The first posting was not incorrect technically.

But you are correct that, geographically speaking, SFO lies within San Mateo Country.
 
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legacyins
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 8:57 pm

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 28):

I was thinking more about the people who like to discuss the Immigration policies of the US.  
 
flaps30
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 9:55 pm

Quoting Q (Reply 3):

Long time ago, I don't remember name of airline was nonstop L:AX-Guam on a DC-8 back in 1980's. Isn't? What name of airline was?

Could that have been Braniff? I am almost certain they once flew from LAX-Guam nonstop on a 747SP. It may have been short lived, but I am pretty sure they once flew that route.
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flaps30
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 10:05 pm

Quoting flaps30 (Reply 31):
Could that have been Braniff? I am almost certain they once flew from LAX-Guam nonstop on a 747SP. It may have been short lived, but I am pretty sure they once flew that route.

Well I guess I just answered my own question. Check out departedflights.com and click on the past timetables and then click on the Braniff timetable from October 28th, 1979. Its there.
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Viscount724
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 10:10 pm

Quoting flaps30 (Reply 31):
Could that have been Braniff? I am almost certain they once flew from LAX-Guam nonstop on a 747SP. It may have been short lived, but I am pretty sure they once flew that route.

Yes, I'm almost certain Braniff is the only carrier to have operated nonstop from the U.S. mainland to Guam. It was an intermediate stop to HKG and SIN on Braniff's misguided and very unprofitable effort at transpacific service not long before they went bust.

I think the following U.S. carriers have all served Guam at one time or other:

Pan Am
TWA
Northwest (now Delta)
Continental (now United)
Hawaiian
Braniff
 
YULWinterSkies
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 10:33 pm

Quoting timpdx (Reply 5):
You can transit Japan sans customs. Its something called a transit without isa, something we Americans need to learn about, see other threads about how backwards the US is inthis regard. Back to the topic, transiting Japan s no biggie.

Certainly, but these flights require you to have a passport as they are international flights. You get into the US from abroad at either end (GUM or mainland) therefore you need a passport, no matter whether your original destination is the US or not. Japan immigration does not ask for it, though technically you have to show a boarding pass and ID that matches the name on the pass to enter the boarding areas at NRT (hence you use your passport, but it is not for immigration control purposes). Yes the security check at NRT is very straightforward, I've experienced it, no questions asked about citizenship, destination, origin, etc...

Why only one airline then from the US? Because it is a very small market... a long-haul route that requires a wide-body, and one with a small J cabin as this is mostly low yield traffic. So that UA 777 captures most demand and that's it. Moreover, few airlines have long-haul hubs at HNL (though DL sort of does have a HNL hub, but they serve GUM massively through their NRT super-hub instead). Probably no room for DL or HA there.
GUM-LAX: forget about it. Very thin route and very long. Expensive to operate for low yields. Somewhat similar to Europe-HNL. No demand that justifies the extra cost of the very long haul.

Quoting rutankrd (Reply 20):
Yes but that most tragic of events occurred using DOMESTIC flights right !

Sure, but the transit without a visa program was seen as a breach allowing people without a visa (for reasons that could be security denial, or no application in fear of being denied) to remain in the US by "missing" the flight departing the US. This was legit and due to the fact that there are no true international terminals in the US (boarding on intl and domestic flights are normally mixed within the same terminal, which one can exit on the street without any passport check). Other countries that allow transit without a visa (which is most) don't let intl-to-intl transiting people enter terminals that also have domestic flights, and from which one can exit without passport control.
Redesigning terminals would have been a better option for travelers, but more costly and less rapid and easy to implement.
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NWAROOSTER
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 10:37 pm

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 12):

Quoting JohnClipper (Reply 9):
But will DL let you board the flight in the U.S. without a passport in hand even if your final destination is GUM?

No. How would that work an arrival in GUM with a planeful of Japanese tourists who need to clear immigration and customs?

Guam is a Japanese beach destination. That is why both Continental Micronesia and Northwest Airlines operated fights from various cities in Japan to Guam. There are a lot more beach destinations closer to the United States in the Caribbean and Mexico than Guam. The airlines fly where the people want to fly.   
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kc135topboom
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 10:52 pm

Quoting tortugamon (Reply 13):
Quoting COSPN (Reply 11):Guam has the most airline service per capita of any US city
That would be a great stat if it was true. Just not sure it is. 1.3 Million enplanements vs SFO 880k population with 44.5 Million emplanements.

Guam is an island with 19 small cities, towns, and villages on it. San Francisco is one city in the 9 county San Francisco Bay Area, with more than 7 million people* in it.

SFO-44.5M enplanements / 7 million people* = 6.4 enplanements per person/population

GUM-1.3M enplanements** / 160 thousand people*** = 8.1 enplanements per person/population

Guam wins.

***The population of Guam does not include military or military dependents. The current military population on Guam is about 15,000, and another 40,000 military dependents. These numbers do not include the 4800 Marines and 5500 dependents that will come in the next few years.

**Also not counted in Guam enplanements are the military charter and military aircraft that fly into Andersen AFB.

* The San Francisco Bay Area only has an insignificant number of military and dependents (less than 1000 total) as SUU is not counted in the Bay area counties
 
WROORD
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Fri May 24, 2013 11:57 pm

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 18):
The GUM-US Mainland market is very small. GUM is popular for Asia tourists, but way too far for most Americans.

Not to offend anyone, but most Americans do not know what Guam is, nevermind wanting to go there.

Quoting MrBuzzcut (Thread starter):
With the Marines making the move from Okinawa over the next few years, you'd think somebody, especially an island/Asia focused airline like HA would have moved into the market by now, even as a stopover for flights to elsewhere in Asia

Military offers their own shuttle on transport planes for a fraction of the cost, so the buildup of Marines does not translate to higher yields on the route.
 
hnl-jack
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Sat May 25, 2013 2:46 am

Quoting JohnClipper (Reply 9):
But will DL let you board the flight in the U.S. without a passport in hand even if your final destination is GUM?

I have flown the HNL-Gum segment many times and even as a U.S. citizen, you would do well to take your passport with you. You'll be required to clear immigration on both ends.
 
azncsa4qf744er
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Sat May 25, 2013 5:44 am

Since when do you need to clear immigration when transiting in Japan? I've transmitted HND/KIX/NRT many times and never have I clear immigration. I re-clear security with my passport and that's about it. What hassle are we talking here?
 
tortugamon
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Sat May 25, 2013 6:35 am

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 36):
Guam is an island with 19 small cities, towns, and villages on it. San Francisco is one city in the 9 county San Francisco Bay Area, with more than 7 million people* in it.
Quoting COSPN (Reply 24):
SFO Metro is much more than 880,000

Ok, I do not want to beleaguer this point too much but I will offer up another airport with higher per capita traffic: HNL

Honolulu is in the city and county of Honolulu. with 390K people. If you take the broader metro area the population is 953,000. Passengers = 18,000,000. = 46 passengers per city resident or 18.8 passengers per metro resident.

Lets forget about the city; the state of Hawaii has 1,392,000 people so that would be 12.9 passengers per state resident. All of which are above the 8.1 figure of GUM.

I just used wiki for these stats so many could be off. Let me know.

tortugamon
 
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RWA380
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Sat May 25, 2013 8:54 am

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 33):
Pan Am
TWA
Northwest (now Delta)
Continental (now United)
Hawaiian
Braniff

And AQ did with wet leased DC-10's flying as Aloha Pacific.....
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rwy04lga
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Sat May 25, 2013 10:12 am

Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 29):
country of San Francisco

Well, if it's now a COUNTRY, you damn sure need a passport!  
Just accept that some days, you're the pigeon, and other days the statue
 
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kgaiflyer
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Sat May 25, 2013 3:41 pm

Quoting Braniff747SP (Reply 6):
Only we have such an arcane system for transiting passengers.

No need to beat ourselves up over it.

I do the same thing at YOW transiting from an IAD flight to an LHR flight.

But . . . that means we are not the only nation with such an arcane passenger transiting system.
 
b737100
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Sun May 26, 2013 12:03 am

Quoting RWA380 (Reply 41):

just a note of interest, the Aloha 737 in the pic ship 711 is the aircraft involved in the "blow-roof " incident.
Boeing 737 sunjet service
 
Braniff747SP
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Sun May 26, 2013 6:26 am

Quoting kgaiflyer (Reply 43):
But . . . that means we are not the only nation with such an arcane passenger transiting system.

Apparently not...

Quoting copter808 (Reply 21):

I seem to recall that before 9-11 we were pretty normal in regards to transit visas.

Indeed we where.
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RE: Why Only One US Airline To Guam?

Sun May 26, 2013 10:42 pm

Quoting kgaiflyer (Reply 43):
I do the same thing at YOW transiting from an IAD flight to an LHR flight.
But . . . that means we are not the only nation with such an arcane passenger transiting system.

That is more a function of the facilities available at YOW, that the rules of the nation.

If you were to fly IAD-YYZ-LHR or IAD-YUL-LHR not only would you not have to transit Customs on your connection, but on the return LHR-YUL/YYZ-IAD, you wouldn't even have to carry your baggage to US Customs to pre-clear them, it's now done electronically!
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!