airmale
Posts: 7125
Joined: Fri Sep 17, 2004 4:48 pm

British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 12:12 am

BA will axe the LondonGW-Havana service by next March following Cubana's exit from the route Smile

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.....up there with the best!
 
ren41
Posts: 1456
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RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 12:22 am

What plane?? 767?

Ren41
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 12:29 am

I beleive it was a B777, operated in a special high-density layout, with Club World & World Traveller.

I am quite surprised, I would have thought such a route would have made a profit, even in Club class.

Perhaps they need more B777's to accommodate longhaul expansion from LGW or LHR? I presume they might then be reconfigured to FJY/FJWY.

Cheers for the info,
CP
 
chepos
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2000 9:40 am

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 1:10 am

Litttle by little BA is axing its leisure routes. In the month of May last year they axed SJU. BA you are greatly missed at SJU.


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Chepos
Puerto Rico
Fly the Flag!!!!
 
Ndebele
Posts: 2847
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2001 3:16 am

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 1:10 am

Obviously BA needs more 777s for LHR/LGW, mon capitaine! They lease 744s and 763s to QF, they sell their 752s to DHL, they retire their 742s, and all they get are 777s.

It seems to me like BA becomes smaller and smaller, selling more aircraft than they get delivered. How many 752s have already left? About 10, I guess, and 30 more will follow. What replacement does BA have? 20 A320, that's it!
FRA used to have 763s, yesterday I saw one 752 and one 319! And here in STR, we always had 752, now we have 319!

I wonder how many routes BA will "axe" or downgrade during the next 2 years  Crying
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 1:24 am

Chepos,

Econtre esta foto de uno de los B777 de BA en San Juan; disfrute!  Smile/happy/getting dizzy



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Es una gran pena que no vuelan mas a esos lugares-me encanta ver los aviones de British Airways en Latinoamerica!  Crying

Pero al nuevo jefe, le gusta ofrecer Primera clase antes de todo, y claro, esa clase es muy dificil de llenar en ciertas rutas-como a la de San Juan, San Jose (Costa Rica etc.)

Si no pueden llenar la cabina de primera y Club World, no les gusta mantener servicios a esos lugares.  Sad

I basically just told Chepos (hope he speaks Spanish Big grin )
that BA don't like operating into "fringe markets", where there the yields are not likely to be very high.

Saludos,
CP
 
chepos
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2000 9:40 am

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 1:31 am

Hey Hablas espanol Capt. Picard.
Anyway si entiendo que por eso es que BA dejo de volar a SJU pero nos hace falta verlos aqui.


Gracias por poner esa foto del avion de BA en la cuidad capital, San Juan esta muy linda nunca la habia visto . Hasta luego y muchas gracias.

Chepos
Puerto Rico
Fly the Flag!!!!
 
Marco
Posts: 4006
Joined: Sun Jul 09, 2000 3:41 pm

Capt.Picard

Mon May 14, 2001 2:02 am

...then how come they fly to montreal? Don't get me wrong I'm very glad that they fly to YUL coz I use Ba everytime to YUL but I don't think the market is like NYC/BOS...
Proud to be an Assyrian!
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 2:17 am

Hi Marco,

I'm not an expert, but obviously Montreal must be a pretty good mkt for BA.

As I understand it, as long as they are able to fill up their holds with cargo, and sell large quantities of premium-priced tickets, they are willing to fly any route.

Don't forget BA are also making money from transfer pax at LHR & YUL (such as yourself, because you are feeding their flight at LHR), so it's not just about whether there is a good market between YUL and LHR.

Even though this is Quebec we are talking about Big grin , the UK has strong links with Canada (and of course, the US).

Rgds,
CP
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 2:23 am

Chepos,

Ningun problema; se hablar en espanol (o mejor dicho, en mi caso, castellano!) por que mi madre es Argentina, y viajo a EZE dos veces por ano, y siempre con BA, para ver la parte de mi familia, que es Argentina (soy ingles tambien...).

Hasta la proxima!
CP
 
aussiestu
Posts: 752
Joined: Tue Mar 20, 2001 7:32 pm

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 2:24 am


The route to Havana was operated by the AML crew and on the high density Club/World Traveller seating. With just 28 Club and 355 WT. The seating in WT was 3x4x3. This is compared to the usual 3x3x3 in BAs 777 fleet. Its a real shame that they are stopping this flight as it was hoped that this would move back to BA mainline crew. Unless you can fill 14First, 45 Club and WT Plus and WT seats to a destination then that route will certainly look to being dropped. The plan is that all BAs 777 fleet will have the same seat configuration. Although it is the LGW 777 fleet that will have just Club beds, WTPlus and WT. THis could change though. Stay tuned?????

Goodbye AML and sorry to say Goodbye Cuba! Maybe this market may return?
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 2:31 am

Hi Aussiestu,

I have been told by my Travel Agent that BA's EZE, and some of BA's US services out of LGW will retain First class, as well as receiving the upgrades to the other classes.

Most other B777's at LGW, as you have said, will only operate a Club World and Economy product.

Cheers
CP
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 2:37 am

Thanks for the info Stuart.

Just curious, what AML?

rgds
russ
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 4:31 am

Hi Russ,

While Aussiestu sleeps (given he might be in Australia now), I managed to find this response to another thread, from the search engine:

"AML is airline management limited: the cabin crew on these services are loaned from JMC airlines, wear BA uniform and fly with BA flight crew in a BA coloured aircraft. The inside layout is however different from mainline aircraft"

JMC (in case you are not aware) are a British Charter airline, which specialise in flying leisure passengers to leisure destinations in Southern Europe, and further afield too.

Given BA's attitude towards flying not-so-profitable routes, with no or small amounts of premium seating, I am surprised they even bothered to start such an arrangement.

Obviously they weren't getting the type of pax they wanted, and are now ditching the route.

I would have thought wealthier pax might have been interested in flying to Cuba year-round, but perhaps not.

We might even see Virgin or BMI start schedules services, who knows?!

Rgds,
CP

 
madhatter
Posts: 223
Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2001 6:37 am

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 4:48 am

If you look in the summer 2002 BA schedule on their website Havana is still listed as 2 x weekly 772 from LGW operated by AML. The only route that has been swapped from AML to mainline BA is Tobago and Grenada and that has decreased from 2 x weekly to 1 x weekly but still on a 772.
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 5:01 am

Madhatter,

Thanks for your info; I had heard that all AML ops were to be discontinued from end of Summer 2002.

Here is an excerpt from the shareholder meeting of March 7th, 2001:

"The last major element of the network strategy which I want to talk about is Gatwick. In headline terms, it is abandoning the BA strategy of building Gatwick as a second major hub airport. If I had a single line to say why we reached the conclusion, it would be “one runway”.

We were also losing a lot of money trying to do it. The new strategy is to re-orient, to have a smaller Gatwick and a Gatwick which is more focused on serving point-to-point markets.


The first piece relates to the longhaul side. The main headline is “smaller”: from 33 aircraft down to 20. A number of those aircraft are moved up to Heathrow along with their routes. A number will also be dropped from the business and Dave has talked about the reduction in capital that goes with that.


The next major headline on the longhaul side is to concentrate on a single fleet, get rid of the 747s and 767s down there and have an all 777 fleet, and to take First Class out of about a dozen of those aircraft. What will we be doing with those remaining aircraft? I would describe it as targeting the top end of the leisure markets to the Caribbean and so forth where there is good business to be had and the BA brand and product works quite well, albeit First Class not necessarily.

Then there are what we describe as secondary business markets, where we do not really have Heathrow competition and there is a big enough local London market to sustain a service without having a very high reliance on feed traffic, which is partly behind the decision to get rid of the 747s out of Gatwick.


In terms of shorthaul, we will be moving that to a much more UK-oriented programme. Key in this is to get the right aircraft size and this was part of the reason to look to integrate the Euro-Gatwick operation which runs our 737 operations and the CityFlyer operations, which is a regional jet operation, because we need to manage that schedule in an integrated way to intersperse the regional jets with the bigger aircraft.

What will they be doing? In the big markets which are duplicated with Heathrow, there is a niche business market around the Gatwick catchment area which we will be targeting. If you can provide a decent schedule alternative from Gatwick, passengers for whom Gatwick is a convenient airport will go there and will not trek round the M25.

So where the market is big enough to sustain that, we will be targeting that niche and, again, the secondary business markets where the Heathrow competition is not strong, and also where BA is unable for slot reasons to provide the breadth of market coverage that we want to for our UK corporate customers, we will be providing that out of Gatwick.

Again, there is a chunk of leisure markets which are not so airport-sensitive, where we believe we can be successful at Gatwick."


AND:

"Where does the value come from for the shareholder from this new strategy? On the longhaul side, the value comes from having a higher proportion of our network at Heathrow, where we make of the order of 15% higher unit revenues.


Getting rid of some of those small longhaul fleets at Gatwick, the most unpopular of which with our customers is the AML operation: this is a fleet of three 777 aircraft in a very high density configuration, which make compromises on seat width to pack seats in. We have decided that that is not supportive of the BA brand and product strategy and we are eliminating that fleet. All aircraft flying out of Gatwick will be offering the full mainline product specification, albeit not every class in some cases.


Dropping First on routes with low demand: there is a lot of real estate and cost tied up in offering First Class and, if you cannot get passenger volumes and yields to support it, that is a money loser. Next, suspension of the worst performing destinations.

The other source of value is that moving those 767s to Heathrow enables us to fill a niche at Heathrow where you can get slots at off-peak times, or at least the opportunity cost for making the slots available is much lower. Being off-peak, it is not supportive of flying 747s or 777s necessarily on them, but a niche role for 767s providing extra off-peak frequency to big longhaul business markets

(a) is supportive of our position in those markets, and

(b) we believe is much profitable than flying to some of the destinations to which they were flying out of Gatwick".

Rgds,
CP
 
aussiestu
Posts: 752
Joined: Tue Mar 20, 2001 7:32 pm

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 5:15 am

Sorry Capt P

I forgot some 777 will be 4 class, yes they will have First. I was interested in who wrote that the Summer 2002 schedule is already out for BA. Where do they get that sort of info? I think its a great shame that BA is dropping Cuba but one hopes that they will return in the future. Cuba is a progressing country?

If BA is to continue to Tobago and Grenada that will obviously be done as a shuttle from ANU. Will this market call for a 3 class or 4 class aircraft?
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 5:41 am

Hi Aussiestu,

No need to apologise, I get things wrong all the time!

I'm afraid I don't know much about the situation in Cuba, so I will refrain from commenting.

Needless to say though, the tourist industry is booming, and probably generating much-needed foregn revenue!

As for Tobago & Grenada, again, I am not certain. My guess is BA would prefer not to dive into that market with a 4-class product, and will "test the waters" with a 3-class product first, before perhaps providing a First class cabin, if there is a demand for such opulence! Big grin

Rgds,
CP
 
Superfly
Posts: 37735
Joined: Thu May 11, 2000 8:01 am

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 1:21 pm

Hmmmmm.... Someone please school me a little on this.  Confused

Is British Airways losing ground to Cubana on this route?
They use DC-10s and IL-62s on this route.
Is British Airways a shrinking violet in the sky?

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airmale
Posts: 7125
Joined: Fri Sep 17, 2004 4:48 pm

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 1:36 pm

As the thread states, Cubana also quit the route, I do not know when though Smile
.....up there with the best!
 
trintocan
Posts: 2728
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2000 6:02 pm

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 1:57 pm

Slowly but surely BA is dropping many of its Caribbean routes and cutting frequencies on others. It is all a result of their plan to focus on the high-end market which offers the greatest yield. San Juan then, now Havana and also Montego Bay are facing the axe. As for Tobago, BA has demanded a half-million pound subsidy from the Government to keep the service active beyond April 2002. (I cannot say whether they have also asked Grenada for same). It seems as though their main regional focus is Barbados (with its huge high-yield tourist market from the UK) which has daily 747-400/777 flights and had the Concorde before it hibernated; St. Lucia and Antigua also have some high-yield passengers but that is not really the case for Tobago or Grenada. Profits are thus being placed above all else.

Que lastima! Chepos, lo siento mucho que BA no tiene vuelos desde de San Juan. Es posible que otras islas del Caribe perdiendo servicios de BA en pocos meses y anos.

Trintocan.
Hop to it, fly for life!
 
ILOVEA340
Posts: 2064
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 1999 9:49 am

RE: CP

Mon May 14, 2001 2:08 pm

thats to bad. it seems everyone (europe) is pulling out of Cuba. Since balair will cancell their service. and not all the euro. majors offer this route
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 6:06 pm

IloveA340,

At a guess, are Alitalia, Iberia and Condor or LTU still serving the market, as well as perhaps Air France & AOM?

Those are the airlines I consider likely to be flying tourists from Europe, to Cuba, and if not Havana, perhaps then Varadero, or other such holiday centres in Cuba.

I would personally love to visit Havana, as I have heard many stories about some of it's beautiful, albeit run-down buildings, including the opera, which is apparently a bargain at the moment.

Rgds,
CP
 
il75
Posts: 257
Joined: Tue May 08, 2001 7:35 pm

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 6:37 pm

Could anyone explain this to me? I do not understand the logic.

Cubana announces they drop the route and BA does the same. But wouldn't be smarter for one of this airlines to stay and pick up the others customers and then automatically increase the amount of pax on that route?

Erico


Ps: Saludos a Capt.Picard, desde Estocolmo
 
lima
Posts: 1090
Joined: Sun May 30, 1999 11:37 am

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 6:56 pm

What about EZE? when is BA switching the B747-400 to 777 to Buenos Aires and how many times a week flying to/from Gatwick?
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 7:09 pm

IL75,

Buenos Dias a ti Big grin

My only guess is that either both airlines were experiencing very poor/drop in pax or cargo loads, or pax loads were good, but yields were poor.

Or,
That the decisions by either airline to drop routes between the UK & Cuba were unrelated to each other.
Cubana may have been motivated to drop the route, as it may have experienced capacity problems (requiring the a/c to operate other services, when it was enroute to/from the UK).

Or that Cubana could not compete with BA, and decided to drop the route before they knew BA would drop it too.

The other alternative has already been mentioned by a few people already; that BA's decision to axe the route was due to poor loads in it's premium cabins (Club World, in this case), and that this decision was made irrespective of whatever Cubana had decided/not decided to do with the same route.

As it stands, I beleive a few UK Charter airlines do still fly to Cuba, although I beleive they fly into Varadero, rather than Havana.

Lima,

Buenos Dias to you too! Big grin

As far as I know, BA are now operating the B777 to EZE, non-stop from LGW. I beleive BA plan to increase frequencies on that route to 6x weekly.

If the route continues to become popular, BA may decide to move the service to Heathrow (as has happened with services to Brazil).

The a/c is operated in FJY configuration.

Rgds,
CP
 
chepos
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2000 9:40 am

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 7:26 pm

I remember when BA used to fly to wow almost every corner of the world a couple of years ago. But things are getting more expensive and they have had to axe some routes.
Chepos
Puerto Rico
Fly the Flag!!!!
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 8:13 pm

Hi again Chepos,

Yes, those were the days in which the British Empire still possessed a huge sphere of influence, and air services to connect Britain's colonies with London were implemented by the Government, through Imperial Airways.

My knowledge of the history of British aviation is sketchy to say the least, but I do know that one of the flagship routes, was the Kangaroo route, from London to Sydney (still running today).

Back in the days of Imperial Airways (pre-WWII), that particular route incorporated a number of very interesting enroute stops-some of the stories I have read about landing in the desert at night, and under & around major storm cells in SE Asia are amazing.

I wish the Flying Boats flown by Imperial Airways & Pan American still existed!

I beleive BSAA (British South American Airways) operated services to Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Uruguay & British Guyana at one point.

The wreckage of one BSAA a/c named "Stardust" still lies strewn across the Argentine portion of the Andes. I beleive it was operating a flight from Cordoba to Santiago, when the aircrew became disorientated by low cloud.

Unfortunately, the days of Flying Boats & Imperial Airways are long gone, although BA still fly to many Commonwealth countries.

Rgds,
CP
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 8:22 pm

I should add that of course Argentina, Brazil, Chile & Uruguay were never British colonies, but they did form part of Britain's "informal colonies".

The British had extensive interests in these countries, and built a lot of the railways & railway stations that still exist in Argentina & Uruguay.

For those of you that are familiar with Buenos Aires, Plaza Constitucion & Retiro railway stations are very similar in design to Paddington station in London.

In fact Plaza Constitucion still imports electronic buffers made in Ipswich!

Next time you travel to a Railway station in South America, look carefully at the Iron girders, as they will usually bear the imprint of a British firm!

Rgds,
CP
 
Guest

RE: British Airways To Quit Cuba

Mon May 14, 2001 9:32 pm

Somehow it's not surprising that the Havana route is being cut back. Cuba's a good place for tourist passengers looking for an inexpensive holiday, but in terms of total economic strength, the country is more or less in the same league as North Dakota, but with a much lower per capita GDP.

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