Here's a good overview of the results of yesterday's LaGuardia Lottery to cut back AIR 21 slots and congestion. US and DL took it on the nose.
Watch for medium-size and small markets that depend on these two carriers for service to LGA to get hammered. Of course Delta Shuttle and US Airways Shuttle will need to continue every one of their dozens and dozens of high-margin flights to DCA, BOS, IAD, etc, and we'll need to have 20 or so flights to ATL. But five measly flights to ROC? BHM? TYS?
To paraphrase Seinfeld's Soup Nazi, "NO FLIGHTS FOR YOU!"
Yes, it's good that low-fare carriers got slots. But most of those go to major markets. Big Air needs to redistribute its remaining huge number of LGA slots to *include medium-and-small size markets.* At the cost--gasp--of just a few moneybags shuttle flights! Can Big Air show just a dram of social justice sense and political sense? Not likely.
Delta, U.S. Airways Losers in LaGuardia Lottery
December 4, 2000 6:56 pm EST
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Delta Air Lines and US Airways saw new flights to smaller communities slashed under a lottery held Monday to cut congestion at New York's LaGuardia airport.
The commuter arms of both airlines, previously authorized to conduct more than 80 takeoffs and landings a day under a new program, wound up with only 20 slots each under the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) lottery that spread 159 takeoff and landing slots among 13 carriers.
Delays at LaGuardia have soared since the U.S. Congress in April authorized legislation lifting some flight restrictions to promote competition and increase new service.
But the AIR-21 legislation set no ceiling on the new flights at LaGuardia, the airport now responsible for a quarter of air traffic control delays nationally, leading the FAA to temporarily curb the new flights, due to reach over 300 a day by year's end.
With little ceremony, the names of the 13 carriers were drawn from a glass bowl to determine the order in which they could take turns to choose from the available times.
Delta drew first place and US Airways was last, but it was the smaller carriers with current rights to fewer than 20 slots that walked away with a full schedule of flights, even if they didn't get the exact times they wanted.
SMALLER CARRIERS GET THEIR SLOTS
"The only thing I didn't get was two 8.00 a.m. departures. I've got one 7.00 a.m. (and) I'm hoping I can change that," said Airtran network planning manager John Kirby after the lottery at FAA headquarters.
Under FAA rules, carriers are free to swap among themselves, but not to sell the AIR-21 slots.
The new slots become effective at the end of January and remain in effect until Sept. 15, during which time span FAA hopes it can devise a method of allocating LaGuardia's limited capacity.
Charging airlines higher fees for using the airport at peak times has been suggested, but it's not clear how that would work in a way that would still promote competition by newer carriers.
"Even if we used a congestion pricing structure, we have to accommodate the new entrants and the smaller airlines," said Robert Boyle, executive director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the agency that operates LaGuardia.
Delta, which warned in comments ahead of the lottery that it would be forced to cut service to some communities, said it would be some weeks before it could announce its new schedule.
DELTA REVIEWING SCHEDULES
"We're are going to look at every possible avenue to protect as much service as we can," said Delta spokesman Russ Williams after the airline lost 68 AIR-21 slots in the lottery.
US Airways, whose other LaGuardia operations had been adversely affected by the worsening delays, took the loss of 62 AIR-21 slots on the chin. "We said going into this we commend the FAA's approach. It strikes a fair and appropriate balance," said spokesman David Castelveter.
AMR. Corp.'s American Airlines was reduced to 20 of the 32 AIR-21 slots it had expected, while Continental Airlines lost just five of its 25 AIR-21 takeoffs and landings.
New entrant and smaller carriers at LaGuardia got all the slots they currently operate, AirTran -- 11, American TransAir -- 6, Legend Airlines -- 7, Midway Airlines -- 15, Midwest Express -- 8, Spirit Airlines -12, Shuttle America -14, Southeast Airways -4 and Vanguard Airlines 2.
Legend, which halted service over the weekend and filed for bankruptcy protection, was allowed to bid as it still retains an FAA operating certificate.
FAA conducted a final contingency round of the lottery to allocated Legend's slot selections, in the event it does not resume operations.
Need a new airline paint scheme? Better call Saul! (Bass that is)