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My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Sun Jul 08, 2012 8:02 pm

My hometown airport has about 11 ticket counter spaces. 5 of them are currently empty (vacated by Continental, Northwest, America West, and ValuJet). AirTran probably will vacate its ticket counter space soon. Should US Airways & American merge, one more ticket counter will be vacated.

No new airlines are coming to my airport in the near future.

Too many empty ticket counter spaces = Not a pretty sight. I wonder what should my airport do with them.. Expand some existing ticket counters? Convert one to small retail store, one to airport information center, etc.? Or just leave them empty?

Does your airport have many empty ticket counter spaces too?

PS- asked this post to be moved to tech/operation forum

[Edited 2012-07-08 13:04:48] of the Future
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Sun Jul 08, 2012 8:07 pm

Greensboro has 6 empty ticketing slots and even then, half of US Airways space (which is a double space) isn't used.

Not only that, there are almost enough gates that each departing daily flight could have its own gate.

Down from the days when Eastwind, Skybus, Continental Hub, PeoplExpress, Airtran, Northwest, Eastern, Independence and so on.

There is no hope for Greensboro because of RDU. RDU just keeps adding and adding at the expense of Greensboro. We have the smallest airport of any of the top CSA population centers in the country by about 1/2
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Sun Jul 08, 2012 8:10 pm

I think most US airports have empty ticket counters these days. US/HP, DL/NW and UA/CO drastically reduced their ticket counter "footprint" when they merged in most stations. With kiosks and OLCI, many airlines have or had far more counter space than they need even aside from mergers.
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Sun Jul 08, 2012 8:29 pm

Mine certainly does. FL /WN at WN, UA/CO at UA. NW is at DL... Lots of empty space.
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Sun Jul 08, 2012 9:22 pm

We even have empty space here at ANCHORAGE!!! Would you believe it!??!
But only 4 or 6 counter positions, and in honesty, they're used during the summer seasonal Condor/jetBlue service.

I was surprised recently to see how little space UA has in DFW anymore- they used to be a five-gate operation, with multiple flights to LAX, SFO, ORD, DEN, and IAD all day long. Now, UA just has one chunk of ticket counter space, and when I was checking in on a busy afternoon, only ONE EMPLOYEE doing check-ins. Sorry, but when you have computer problems due to a merger, the check-in kiosk can't handle it. So I booked it over to the CO desk, and they got me checked in for my UA flights. I hope they somehow manage to keep all the space they need, rather than just staff one person to handle it all!
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Sun Jul 08, 2012 9:47 pm


Here in the UK my local London Gatwick doesn't really have many more empty booths than in the past I don't think. I think it has some with the flatscreen above just saying the London Gatwick logo and then they change it when they need to for a flight. Of course with more and more people checking in online and carrying fewer bags and only using bag drop maybe they don't need as much check-in desks. Saying that Easyjet often has long long lines when I'm there.

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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Sun Jul 08, 2012 9:57 pm

Get used to it, the future is not going to get better for the airlines.
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Mon Jul 09, 2012 5:29 pm

CVG is running at about 40 percent of what it could handle. We have an entire concourse and 2 terminals (albeit small terminals) that are vacant.
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Mon Jul 09, 2012 6:46 pm

If you want to talk about Vacant, Pittsburgh probably is the worst followed by Cincinnati and St. Louis. Those former hubs are desolate places with large parts of the terminal closed off.
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Tue Jul 10, 2012 7:33 am

The ticket counter isn't half empty, it is just twice as large as it needs to be  
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Tue Jul 10, 2012 7:50 am

My second -city airport, Memphis is getting depressing. While concourse C is nice, modern and full of life, the area from where FL flies on concourse A is colloquially called The Ghetto because it's so well......decrepit. The jetbridge FL uses at Mem was probably built in 1965, complete with huge overhanging canopy. the jetways on either side are either completely gone or are completely derelict looking. I'm just waiting for the day when either southwest moves back to C on their own to take advantage of better facilities over there or the airport forces them to move over there so they can either completely demolish that quadrant of A or wall it off. OTOH, the last time i flew through there I had mental images of a line of Eastern, Braniff, and other assorted DC-9s and 727s parked side by side at those gates. It's just sad to see what's happening to Mem and with DL's continued pulldown, i have a feeling it's only going to get worse.
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Tue Jul 10, 2012 3:15 pm

SGF built its new midfield terminal with an overcapacity of ticket counters. While the UA/CO merger did not affect our ticket counter vacancies (because CO did not fly to SGF at the time of the merger), the DL/NW merger certainly did. I am not aware of any credible predictions SGF's ticket counter vacancy situation will improve; no other airlines have made any credible noises of possible expansion of service to SGF.

WN, for now, is saying it will serve BKG sometime in 2013 following the completion of its merger with FL, so it most likely would not also serve SGF. F9 seems to be entrenched with its current service level at BKG, so I don't see it expanding service to SGF. US doesn't seem to be making any noises of expanding SGF service (HP served SGF years ago; US never did). NK; same story.

SGF has AA, UA, DL and G4, all of whom have capacity at their current ticket counters to serve their current passenger numbers. We would have to see a major expansion of service for this to change.

On the plus side, it contributes greatly to the wide-open expansiveness of the landside portion of our new terminal.
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Fri Jul 13, 2012 12:45 am

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 4), "I was surprised recently to see how little space UA has in DFW anymore- they used to be a five-gate operation . . ."

AA737-823 with reference to United's service at DFW airport, they still have a sizeable operation. Although they recently relinquished about 1/3 of their ticket counter space to JetBlue, United still uses Gates E2, E4, E5, E6, E7, E8, and E9, and in the past, they have also used Gate E10 for "overflow" operations and this gate is now regularly used by JetBlue's three daily flights. (Just for information, there is no Gate E1, and Gate E3 is an "unmarked" lower level boarding lounge--not used now--but long ago used by Delta Connection to bus passengers to remote parking areas).

So, as you see, United regularly uses at least seven gates at DFW (Gates E7, E8, E9, and E10 were the gates previously used by Continental). In addition to the cities you mentioned that United serves from DFW--ORD, DEN, LAX, SFO, and IAD--they also serve IAH, EWR, and CLE now as well.

At DFW, there really is not too much unused ticket counter space, except in Terminal B which is exclusively used by American Eagle now. The ticket counter space in Terminal B that was previously occupied by the international carriers in the far north portion of the terminal is under construction and I don't know what that will be re-designed as.

There is also space in Terminal D (the international terminal) for additional airlines. Aside from the permanent counter space used by American, most of the vacant space in the south lobby is unmarked and capable of being used by other airlines (I think it is called "Common Use Terminal Equipment--CUTE).

Finally, in Terminal E (the terminal for all other airlines besides American/American Eagle and the airlines in Terminal D which serve international destinations, like Sun Country), most of the ticket counter space is occupied, although I think it is possible to provide space for an additional airline or two.

In Terminal E, the north lobby is occupied by United and JetBlue, the center lobby is occupied by Virgin America, Alaska, and Delta; and the south lobby is occupied by Frontier, Spirit, and USAirways (and this is the lobby which could probably accommodate additional carriers.


[Edited 2012-07-12 17:49:00]
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Sat Jul 14, 2012 9:12 pm

The nearest airport to my hometown is OXR, and I believe the terminal is completely abandoned now. It used to host United Express and maybe American Eagle. It is sad to see.
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RE: My Airport Terminal Is 1/2 Empty

Sat Jul 21, 2012 2:15 am

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 4):
So I booked it over to the CO desk, and they got me checked in for my UA flights.

The CO desk?? DFW is a merged station, everything says UA at check-in. It is staffed by both pmUA and pmCO employees, and they all should be able to help irrespective of whether you're flying sUA or sCO metal.

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