Take CVG for example, where nobody but DL really has any substantial presence to speak of. Does everybody have dedicated de-icing, rampers, etc., or will they sometimes make arrangements for say UA to staff de-icing trucks and then AA will take care of baggage? It just seems stupid for everybody to own their own de-icers at every single station, even if general ramp personnel to do pushback and such are necessary.
Quoting nws2002 (Reply 2): A lot of ground operations are outsourced. Sometimes they are outsourced to other airlines, sometimes to dedicated companies. Depends on the station, the airline, and the number of flights in and out.
That's true, since it all depends on the specific contract I guess. These days I've gotta think FBOs do most of that on their own in outstations where that airline does not a historical presence and hence long-time staff there.
There are tons of ground handling companies out there that will do contract ramp work (i.e. Swissport, Menzies, Servisair etc.). Some offer de-icing at some stations, though there are companies that only do de-icing as well. In other cases, when two airlines have an existing relationship (same alliance or codeshare partners), they may handle each other's aircraft at their respective out stations.
[Edited 2010-02-07 22:19:19]
You know the gear is up and locked when it takes full throttle to taxi to the terminal.