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LotsaRunway
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How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Jul 17, 2016 7:23 pm

This topic has seen some chatter specific to BOS, but I'm interested in taking a larger view of the Eastern New England region. WN first came to PVD and then MHT and generated a strong following. When they started BOS, they moved some flights from PVD and MHT to BOS as part of a regional strategy. WNs success at BOS is questionable given the strong popularity of B6 and their broad offerings of nonstop destinations. It has been said WN flights at BOS appeal more to loyal WN flyers than local, but this cuts growth potential way down. It appears to me that their last couple of attempted adds have been duds and what I thought was a slam-dunk, BOS-PHL couldn't withstand the competition.

Where can WN grow at BOS that actually have a good chance to succeed? Should WN return more focus to the regional airports where there is less competition and a stronger following?
 
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VS4ever
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Jul 17, 2016 7:43 pm

LotsaRunway wrote:
This topic has seen some chatter specific to BOS, but I'm interested in taking a larger view of the Eastern New England region. WN first came to PVD and then MHT and generated a strong following. When they started BOS, they moved some flights from PVD and MHT to BOS as part of a regional strategy. WNs success at BOS is questionable given the strong popularity of B6 and their broad offerings of nonstop destinations. It has been said WN flights at BOS appeal more to loyal WN flyers than local, but this cuts growth potential way down. It appears to me that their last couple of attempted adds have been duds and what I thought was a slam-dunk, BOS-PHL couldn't withstand the competition.

Where can WN grow at BOS that actually have a good chance to succeed? Should WN return more focus to the regional airports where there is less competition and a stronger following?


This an interesting one, in terms of gate space, I am not sure they are going to get a lot more even if they move from A to B at Logan, maybe 1-2 more gates total, that kind of limits the growth prospects they have and certainly the competition is tough for them. Now if they are getting good yields from their current crop of flights, then I could see some additional places coming on line, like SAT, which is crying out for non-stop service as one of the largest markets not yet served on that basis.

As for their current portfolio, again if you use T-100 data (which i know is not perfect) here are the % loads for their main routes (for the whole of 2015 - combined direction

ATL - 83%
AUS - 88.6% (only started end of October)
BNA - 87.4%
BWI - 86.2%
CAK - 63.6% (stopped October)
CMH - 62.5% (Aug-Dec only) - but not pretty
DAL - 87.7% (Aug-Dec only)
DEN - 94.3% - best overall
HOU- 81.1%
MCI - 73.4%
MDW- 89.5%
MKE - 75%
STL - 75.1%

so on that basis, where they are strong, they are strong, but clearly work to do in plenty of areas, particularly CMH, MCI, MKE and STL.

The question then becomes would they do better than those numbers if flying from PVD and MHT, given they bailed from those markets originally when BOS became an option, the answer is probably no, hence why they haven't backfilled even now.

Longer term, I can see PVD as an option for BOS traffic, given the constraints on gate space they have and I could definitely see some route adjustments given a couple of the weaker performers on the list. But the competition out there is tough, so I truly wonder just how well a BOS station is doing. PVD and MHT are likely cheaper to operate out of, but can they attract the numbers as a result. Past history as noted above says no, but I am not sure there is a growth opportunity in BOS just yet, unless the yields are up there..
That feeling when you sit at the end of a runway, brakes are released and the raw power takes over. Now that is a thing of beauty and it never gets old.
 
SWADawg
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Jul 17, 2016 8:03 pm

I know I'll get hammered for this as usual, but WN and B6 will probably be merging in the next few years, so BOS should take care of itself eventually.
My posts are my opinion only and do not reflect the views of Southwest Airlines
 
MaxxFlyer
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Jul 17, 2016 8:09 pm

SWADawg wrote:
I know I'll get hammered for this as usual, but WN and B6 will probably be merging in the next few years, so BOS should take care of itself eventually.


No hammer, but that ain't gonna happen. Ever.
 
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tlecam
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Jul 17, 2016 8:21 pm

Two quick anecdotes from a born and raised Bostonian. WN is generally not viewed as the default least expensive option like it used to be. From BOS specifically, it's also viewed as inconvenient in terms of connections.

I generally hear people preferring B6 due to many non-stop flights and there is a general sense that the onboard product is a slight upgrade - TV's etc... Families also like the ability to assign seats on B6. Again, all anecdotal. I think that BOS in general is slightly less price conscious on average than other parts of the country and will choose the non stop flight and pay a bit more on B6 rather than connect through Baltimore/Nashville/Midway.



I would expect WN to grow again at PVD and MHT. Traffic has been down in general at those airports since the last financial crisis, and WN has been impacted.

I think WN will have opportunistic growth, but it will be a struggle to compete with B6.

Right now, they don't have flights that really cater to business customers in the way that they do on the west coast. I know plenty of business travelers who will take WN out of LA or the Bay Area. I don't see that as much on the east coast.
BOS-LGA-JFK | A:319/20/21, 332/3, 346 || B:717, 735, 737, 738, 739, 752, 753, 762, 763, 764, 787, 772, 744 || MD80, MD90
 
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adamh8297
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Jul 17, 2016 8:26 pm

I think WN should have some token BOS-Florida/Caribbean if they want to be a viable option in BOS.

VS4ever wrote:
LotsaRunway wrote:
, but clearly work to do in plenty of areas, particularly CMH, MCI, MKE and STL.


Average WN one-way fares aren't that bad though especially when distance in factored in. These are Q4 fares from DOT Table 6.

CMH - 165
IND - 164
MKE - 186
MCI - 233
STL - 248
Airlines flown: A3, AA, AC, AF, AM, BA, B6, CA, CO, CX, DL, EA, EL, IB, LH, MI, MQ, NH, NW, NZ, OU, PE, QF, S4, SQ, TP, UA, US, VS, WE, WN

2019: CX BOS-HKG, WE HKG-HKT, CA HKT-PEK-EWR, B6 EWR-BOS
 
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LotsaRunway
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Jul 17, 2016 9:34 pm

VS4ever wrote:
LotsaRunway wrote:
This topic has seen some chatter specific to BOS, but I'm interested in taking a larger view of the Eastern New England region. WN first came to PVD and then MHT and generated a strong following. When they started BOS, they moved some flights from PVD and MHT to BOS as part of a regional strategy. WNs success at BOS is questionable given the strong popularity of B6 and their broad offerings of nonstop destinations. It has been said WN flights at BOS appeal more to loyal WN flyers than local, but this cuts growth potential way down. It appears to me that their last couple of attempted adds have been duds and what I thought was a slam-dunk, BOS-PHL couldn't withstand the competition.

Where can WN grow at BOS that actually have a good chance to succeed? Should WN return more focus to the regional airports where there is less competition and a stronger following?


This an interesting one, in terms of gate space, I am not sure they are going to get a lot more even if they move from A to B at Logan, maybe 1-2 more gates total, that kind of limits the growth prospects they have and certainly the competition is tough for them. Now if they are getting good yields from their current crop of flights, then I could see some additional places coming on line, like SAT, which is crying out for non-stop service as one of the largest markets not yet served on that basis.

As for their current portfolio, again if you use T-100 data (which i know is not perfect) here are the % loads for their main routes (for the whole of 2015 - combined direction

ATL - 83%
AUS - 88.6% (only started end of October)
BNA - 87.4%
BWI - 86.2%
CAK - 63.6% (stopped October)
CMH - 62.5% (Aug-Dec only) - but not pretty
DAL - 87.7% (Aug-Dec only)
DEN - 94.3% - best overall
HOU- 81.1%
MCI - 73.4%
MDW- 89.5%
MKE - 75%
STL - 75.1%

so on that basis, where they are strong, they are strong, but clearly work to do in plenty of areas, particularly CMH, MCI, MKE and STL.

The question then becomes would they do better than those numbers if flying from PVD and MHT, given they bailed from those markets originally when BOS became an option, the answer is probably no, hence why they haven't backfilled even now.

Longer term, I can see PVD as an option for BOS traffic, given the constraints on gate space they have and I could definitely see some route adjustments given a couple of the weaker performers on the list. But the competition out there is tough, so I truly wonder just how well a BOS station is doing. PVD and MHT are likely cheaper to operate out of, but can they attract the numbers as a result. Past history as noted above says no, but I am not sure there is a growth opportunity in BOS just yet, unless the yields are up there..


Do you have the loads for BOS-IND?

I think the last two adds were CMH and IND. I don't know how they can be making much on the reported loads. Fares are low and almost always in the Ding fare offerings.

I suppose they could add BOS to PHX/LAS/LAX/MCO but Competition would be fierce. Other routes to Fla are very well covered by competition.

PVD and MHT could easily restart DEN and LAS at least most days of the week. MHT could support FLL, and PVD could try STL or RSW.
 
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VS4ever
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Jul 17, 2016 10:37 pm

Loads to IND are 63.8% average from June through December. The last add was AUS in November and that's doing ok, but B6 is matching them.
That feeling when you sit at the end of a runway, brakes are released and the raw power takes over. Now that is a thing of beauty and it never gets old.
 
aaflyer777
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Jul 17, 2016 11:00 pm

I noticed WN sporadically flew BOS-MCO on the weekends this past winter. Anyone know what loads were like/if this route will return this winter?
 
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chrisnh
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:19 am

WN opened with 12 daily flights in 1998 and this winter, for the first time ever, they will shrink below that...to nine. With no competition from B6 and apparently no sign that they will come, WN shrinking MHT is a head-scratcher. The demographics with respect to population, businesses, and income levels are certainly robust enough to support more service than nine daily flights. Indeed, the proof of that is already in the books if you look back to before 2005...when MHT traffic from all sources fell off a cliff.

It would be a marketing coup of sorts for JetBlue if they started service at MHT before WN went to BTV because then B6 could claim service to all six New England states while WN only serves five.
 
MIflyer12
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:28 am

chrisnh wrote:
It would be a marketing coup of sorts for JetBlue if they started service at MHT before WN went to BTV because then B6 could claim service to all six New England states while WN only serves five.


That distinction would matter to just about no one. Any evidence that United made big coin by serving all 50 states?

The OP asks the wrong question. A better question: What routes or added frequencies will yield the highest ROIC for Southwest. Or, much, much more narrowly, What routes from BOS will achieve a hurdle ROIC of XX%?

It's not a game of connecting points on a map... the goal is to fill planes at a high average fare per seat per stage-length-adjusted mile.
 
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LotsaRunway
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:44 am

chrisnh wrote:
WN opened with 12 daily flights in 1998 and this winter, for the first time ever, they will shrink below that...to nine. With no competition from B6 and apparently no sign that they will come, WN shrinking MHT is a head-scratcher. The demographics with respect to population, businesses, and income levels are certainly robust enough to support more service than nine daily flights. Indeed, the proof of that is already in the books if you look back to before 2005...when MHT traffic from all sources fell off a cliff.
.


Chris, it seems that MHT (and PVD) once did a better job in capturing their own local markets. When the economy tanked, things consolidated more at BOS and it appears PVD is doing a good job in recovering their market. Why MHT continues to lag is a good question. Seems NH flyers readily accept the drive to Logan, or find extra value in it. Some market bleed is to be expected, but why MHT lost so much of what it had, and how they get it back are puzzles to me.

BOS continues to grow at record pace, so the overall market is doing very, very well. Seems WN would want to figure out how to claim more of the market.
 
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LotsaRunway
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:55 am

MIflyer12 wrote:
The OP asks the wrong question. A better question: What routes or added frequencies will yield the highest ROIC for Southwest. Or, much, much more narrowly, What routes from BOS will achieve a hurdle ROIC of XX%?

It's not a game of connecting points on a map... the goal is to fill planes at a high average fare per seat per stage-length-adjusted mile.


Perhaps that is more of a question for the long term. WN is still fighting for market at BOS and is obviously willing to take on some losers to grow. In time, they will keep what gives the best return and maybe also some losers that are key for some reason.

But since you propose a variation to the original question, do you want to offer an opinion? I find your question equally interesting.
 
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enilria
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Jul 18, 2016 1:19 am

MaxxFlyer wrote:
SWADawg wrote:
I know I'll get hammered for this as usual, but WN and B6 will probably be merging in the next few years, so BOS should take care of itself eventually.


No hammer, but that ain't gonna happen. Ever.

If they let the largest domestic airline merge I think I'd prepare for a future Ameriflot.
 
aaflyer777
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Jul 18, 2016 1:22 am

I live a lot closer to MHT than i do to BOS and I never fly out of MHT because its usually $200 more to do so. Back in the mid 2000s WN out of MHT was really cheap (used to fly them to MCO all the time) and thats what drove people to MHT. When WN raised the price of tickets, MHT sort of lost its appeal. Less passengers using MHT lead to the decrease in WN flights at MHT.
 
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VS4ever
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Jul 18, 2016 1:57 am

LotsaRunway wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
The OP asks the wrong question. A better question: What routes or added frequencies will yield the highest ROIC for Southwest. Or, much, much more narrowly, What routes from BOS will achieve a hurdle ROIC of XX%?

It's not a game of connecting points on a map... the goal is to fill planes at a high average fare per seat per stage-length-adjusted mile.


Perhaps that is more of a question for the long term. WN is still fighting for market at BOS and is obviously willing to take on some losers to grow. In time, they will keep what gives the best return and maybe also some losers that are key for some reason.

But since you propose a variation to the original question, do you want to offer an opinion? I find your question equally interesting.


I'll bite, at the present time the routes that WN offer seem to give them the ROIC that they need, otherwise those routes would be axed in favor of something better.

The other question to ask is, can they expand, below is the gate usage for Thu/Fri last week. Now this is clearly a very small sample, but it shows an identical usage of the gates apart from A18 and A20 being swapped. So if there are any DL folks on here, do we know that WN have full access to all 5 gates all day, but don't have the flights to cover, or are they only permitted usage of A21/A22 at certain times of the day (early morning and late night). If it's the latter, then we might see why there hasn't been a lot of expansion, they could squeeze in 3 more a day for A18-A20 without too much bother, depending on schedules. But if it's the former and they are allowed full access to all 5 gates all day, then clearly there is plenty of room on A21/A22, as 2 of the 4 or 5 are the early 5.20am-5.30am and 6.35am and 7am departures. So as long as they want to start post 6.35am to either enhance what they have or go elsewhere, they have the capacity to do it. I agree with Adam's comments above, i think they need to think about starting some of the caribbean routes at the weekends as well, but again, not sure what the gate agreement is with Massport/DL to do that.

Gate 15-Jul 14-Jul
A18 10 11
A19 9 9
A20 11 10
A21 5 5
A22 4 4
That feeling when you sit at the end of a runway, brakes are released and the raw power takes over. Now that is a thing of beauty and it never gets old.
 
tomaheath
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 1:13 am

With DL starting Nashville in November and B6 start Atlanta in March will this really eat into WN flights? WN will be competing the two biggest carriers at BOS.
“Live Free Or Die” General John Stark
 
airbazar
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 1:36 am

tlecam wrote:
I generally hear people preferring B6 due to many non-stop flights and there is a general sense that the onboard product is a slight upgrade - TV's etc... Families also like the ability to assign seats on B6.

Bingo. The last time I flew WN my son was young enough that we got early boarding. That was 10 years ago. I hate the cattle boarding process without assigned seating.
BOS is not a major hub for any airline and it hasn't been in quite a while so historically many airlines have split market share. As a result, WN doesn't stand out as they typically do in markets where they are the big fish. They were also very late arriving in Boston. Combine all of that and it's easy to understand why their growth has been slow.
In NE, especially PVD and MHT, WN was able to grow at a time when the legacy carriers were "gauging" consumers with ridiculously high prices, because driving to Boston was a nightmare. WN took advantage of that but since the end of the big dig their presence in those markets has been stagnant at best.
 
airzona11
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 1:42 am

With DEN having the best load factor, I would hazard a guess that a lot of West Coast WN flyers 1 hop via DEN to BOS. The stage lengths OAK/LAX/PHX/LAS/SAN, all airports/metros with large WN FFs, to BOS is just too far for WN. Maybe when more 738s come online, but this coast to coast long haul is not in WNs wheel house.
 
tomaheath
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 12:00 pm

airzona11 wrote:
With DEN having the best load factor, I would hazard a guess that a lot of West Coast WN flyers 1 hop via DEN to BOS. The stage lengths OAK/LAX/PHX/LAS/SAN, all airports/metros with large WN FFs, to BOS is just too far for WN. Maybe when more 738s come online, but this coast to coast long haul is not in WNs wheel house.

Your point makes perfect sense. Could we see a LAS flight to add even more connecting opinions?
“Live Free Or Die” General John Stark
 
Cubsrule
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 12:37 pm

tomaheath wrote:
With DL starting Nashville in November and B6 start Atlanta in March will this really eat into WN flights? WN will be competing the two biggest carriers at BOS.


I don't know the dynamics in ATL as well, but I suspect that DL's regional jet service will not affect BNA-BOS much. WN and DL coexist just fine on BNA-LAX/LGA.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
PVD757
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 2:44 pm

I think it's about matching strengths for WN in New England. They've connected most of their strong markets to BOS and they have kept the core of their strong "non-directional" markets at MHT and PVD. Since this appears to be their strategy, take advantage of the loyal local customers and strength of a few other markets that would fit. HOU, DEN, PHX, LAS, and RSW & PBI (maybe BNA & STL longer term) from PVD and or MHT would be my suggestions as a roadmap.
 
georgiabill
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 5:18 pm

The way WN treats MHT passengers they should close the station. They keep down sizing when markets exist.
 
MaxxFlyer
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 5:25 pm

Aside from the comments on WN/B6 merging - why does Southwest HAVE to grow? They can likely eek out a few more flights, but do they need to become a significant player at BOS?
 
airliner371
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 6:50 pm

georgiabill wrote:
The way WN treats MHT passengers they should close the station. They keep down sizing when markets exist.

Yes, I'm sure they "treat" you all terribly. :roll:

Give me a break, MHT is lucky to have the WN service it does today, they aren't treating the market badly, they are serving the market given the size of the market.
 
tomaheath
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 7:37 pm

georgiabill wrote:
The way WN treats MHT passengers they should close the station. They keep down sizing when markets exist.

I'm going to have to disagree with that statement. What kind of issues have you had with the way you were treated by the WN employees at MHT? I've always found them very friendly and never had any issues there.
“Live Free Or Die” General John Stark
 
Rdh3e
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 7:51 pm

enilria wrote:
If they let the largest domestic airline merge I think I'd prepare for a future Ameriflot.


WN is not the largest carrier domestically.
 
JBAirwaysFan
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 9:46 pm

It was mentioned earlier that WN arrived in BOS much later than other carriers. Let's not forget having WN in major primary airports such as BOS and LGA and DCA is relatively new in the grand scheme of things, especially when you consider how long WN has been in service. Entering BOS is an uphill battle for them because they have to go in against carriers that are well established there. WN's main strategy for many decades was secondary airports, so while you saw DL and B6 flourishing in BOS, WN was doing the same at PVD and MHT. Let's face it, DL and B6 have the upper hand, and WN is on their turf.
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georgiabill
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 9:57 pm

My point is WN keeps down sizing MHT! Nothing to do with their great employees. At one point MHT had nearly 30 daily flights and now is back to the original # of flights. I believe if WN had started MHT- ATL they would have been very competitive with DL. 2X daily would have been good. FLL 1x daily connected with their new routes would be good and a return of DEN 1x daily. Also RSW seasonal would be good especially with sox spring training.
Just my 2 cents
 
Cubsrule
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 10:31 pm

JBAirwaysFan wrote:
It was mentioned earlier that WN arrived in BOS much later than other carriers. Let's not forget having WN in major primary airports such as BOS and LGA and DCA is relatively new in the grand scheme of things, especially when you consider how long WN has been in service. Entering BOS is an uphill battle for them because they have to go in against carriers that are well established there. WN's main strategy for many decades was secondary airports, so while you saw DL and B6 flourishing in BOS, WN was doing the same at PVD and MHT. Let's face it, DL and B6 have the upper hand, and WN is on their turf.


Why do you say that B6 has the upper hand? B6 has virtually no brand equity in many of the cities WN serves from BOS. BOS has plenty of inbound traffic too . . .
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
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BobPatterson
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 10:55 pm

Rdh3e wrote:
WN is not the largest carrier domestically.


Am I somehow misunderstanding the May numbers for Revenue Pax enplaned?

JetBlue Airways...........................2,700,059
United Air Lines Inc......................6,450,082
American Airlines Inc..................10,391,012
Delta Air Lines Inc......................10,745,799
Southwest Airlines Co.,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,12,996,806
Facts are fragile things. Treat them with care. Sources are important. Alternative facts do not exist.
 
Rdh3e
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 11:31 pm

BobPatterson wrote:
Rdh3e wrote:
WN is not the largest carrier domestically.


Am I somehow misunderstanding the May numbers for Revenue Pax enplaned?

JetBlue Airways...........................2,700,059
United Air Lines Inc......................6,450,082
American Airlines Inc..................10,391,012
Delta Air Lines Inc......................10,745,799
Southwest Airlines Co.,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,12,996,806

Capacity does not vary based on load factor. Size is not a measure of usage. A table that holds 10 for dinner but only 3 people use it is not a smaller table than a table of 4 which has 4 people eating at it.

I also cannot match the numbers you've posted, where are they from? Did you exclude AK/HI?

For all of US to all of US (which includes territories) T100 shows both AA and DL ahead of WN on your usage metric. On all capacity metrics they are both larger than WN as well.
 
MaxxFlyer
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Sun Sep 11, 2016 11:41 pm

georgiabill wrote:
My point is WN keeps down sizing MHT! Nothing to do with their great employees. At one point MHT had nearly 30 daily flights and now is back to the original # of flights. I believe if WN had started MHT- ATL they would have been very competitive with DL. 2X daily would have been good. FLL 1x daily connected with their new routes would be good and a return of DEN 1x daily. Also RSW seasonal would be good especially with sox spring training.
Just my 2 cents


Wasn't WN downsizing at both MHT and PVD a given once they entered Boston? Depending where you live in the area, the alternative airports may be more convenient. That doesn't mean WN would keep the same number of flights and destinations. A lot of people still feel WN should go back to the now ancient idea of serving secondary airports/cities. They are making much more $$$ with the new business model.
 
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BobPatterson
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 12:39 am

Rdh3e wrote:
BobPatterson wrote:
Rdh3e wrote:
WN is not the largest carrier domestically.


Am I somehow misunderstanding the May numbers for Revenue Pax enplaned?

JetBlue Airways...........................2,700,059
United Air Lines Inc......................6,450,082
American Airlines Inc..................10,391,012
Delta Air Lines Inc......................10,745,799
Southwest Airlines Co.,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,12,996,806

Capacity does not vary based on load factor. Size is not a measure of usage. A table that holds 10 for dinner but only 3 people use it is not a smaller table than a table of 4 which has 4 people eating at it.

I also cannot match the numbers you've posted, where are they from? Did you exclude AK/HI?

For all of US to all of US (which includes territories) T100 shows both AA and DL ahead of WN on your usage metric. On all capacity metrics they are both larger than WN as well.


Please tell me if I am citing the "wrong" source. The numbers are from the http://www.transtats.bts.gov/tables.asp ... CHEDULE_T1 "Air Carrier Summary: T1: U.S. Air Carrier Traffic and Capacity Summary by Service Class" for May 2016 (the latest month available). I do not see the term "T100 there". Is T1 different?

I consider the largest domestic airline to be the one that carries the most revenue-paying passengers. I don't see how any other metric would matter got that purpose.

[edited twice to correct link to T1 data]
Last edited by BobPatterson on Mon Sep 12, 2016 8:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Rdh3e
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:11 am

BobPatterson wrote:

I consider the largest domestic airline to be


Respectfully, what you consider doesn't matter. Capacity is not measured by passengers, and using passengers to determine size is inconsistent with not only industry standard but with logic.

Which restaurant is larger:

Restaurant A seats 800 people and is 40,000 sqft but served only 500 meals.
Restaurant B seats 600 people, is 25,000 sqft and served 550 meals.

If you think that restaurant B is the "bigger" restaurant, I can't help you, that is logically inconsistent. It is "busier" but not larger.

I still don't see which page you pulled those numbers from, but my guess is that it doesn't include the Express passengers for AA/DL/UA and shows only the mainline numbers for them.
 
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tlecam
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:39 am

To be transparent, I do not know much about WN. However, in BOS, my guess is that in order to grow, they'll need to give people a reason to not fly B6. B6 is pretty popular - lots of nonstop destinations (especially for leisure travelers) and TV's on the planes are a big hit for families.
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:41 am

tlecam wrote:
Two quick anecdotes from a born and raised Bostonian. WN is generally not viewed as the default least expensive option like it used to be.

I generally hear people preferring B6 due to many non-stop flights and there is a general sense that the onboard product is a slight upgrade - TV's etc... Families also like the ability to assign seats on B6. Again, all anecdotal.


I'd agree with both of those points. While the second one is purely subjective, I'll say that - with regards to the first point - the only destination that I've found WN to be among the cheapest options is BWI. I'll be clear that I don't travel to ATL, BNA, DEN, etc. often, and the prices may well be the cheapest on those routes, but that is purely speculative; my experience is that WN isn't usually the cheapest.
 
Cubsrule
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:48 am

BobPatterson wrote:
Rdh3e wrote:
WN is not the largest carrier domestically.


Am I somehow misunderstanding the May numbers for Revenue Pax enplaned?

JetBlue Airways...........................2,700,059
United Air Lines Inc......................6,450,082
American Airlines Inc..................10,391,012
Delta Air Lines Inc......................10,745,799
Southwest Airlines Co.,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,12,996,806


I cannot explain the disparity, but those are not the data that WN reported to its investors for May, 2016. WN reported about 10.9 million revenue passengers (not exclusively domestic) to investors.

WN source: http://investors.southwest.com/news-and ... -113056906
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B752OS
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:50 am

It's interesting, WN is able to maintain large networks in both SEA and PDX, I believe 17 cities served each, despite both of those cities being large AS bases. In the case of SEA, you also have a large DL base too. I mention that because the Boston area has a larger population based than the Seattle and Portland areas, yet WN maintains a smaller network from BOS and of course PWM, MHT, BDL and PVD.

Not to turn this into a full MHT thread, I am surprised it lacks non-stop service to JFK and IAD.
 
stlgph
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 2:05 am

Southwest has served Boston since 2009.
It's service beginnings in Seattle and Portland came many years ahead of that.


If Southwest not being #1 in Boston makes them a total failure then damn, Gina, let us pray they make it.
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BobPatterson
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:34 am

Rdh3e wrote:
BobPatterson wrote:

I consider the largest domestic airline to be


Respectfully, what you consider doesn't matter. Capacity is not measured by passengers, and using passengers to determine size is inconsistent with not only industry standard but with logic.

Which restaurant is larger:

Restaurant A seats 800 people and is 40,000 sqft but served only 500 meals.
Restaurant B seats 600 people, is 25,000 sqft and served 550 meals.

If you think that restaurant B is the "bigger" restaurant, I can't help you, that is logically inconsistent. It is "busier" but not larger.

I still don't see which page you pulled those numbers from, but my guess is that it doesn't include the Express passengers for AA/DL/UA and shows only the mainline numbers for them.


I supplied the link/address of the page for the data as well as its title.

Would you please supply a similar link/address to the T100 data you are citing?

Yes, indeed, I will disagree with your restaurant scenario. Number of customers served, not the number of tables, chairs, or franchisees should determine rankings. Most of the fast food places around here serve more customers at drive-through windows than at tables or carry-out counter service. Doesn't have much to do with airlines.

You are correct that ExpressJet (1,887.872 May enplanements) and Endeavor (961,344) are not included in the AA/DL/UA numbers. Would you know how to fairly distribute those passengers among those three airlines? And would you also be able to deduce the percentages that were connecting to mainline flights?

By the way, I think what you consider does matter. I don't dismiss your opinion out-of-hand.

Thanks for your responses, and for the forthcoming link to T100.
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Rdh3e
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:44 pm

BobPatterson wrote:

By the way, I think what you consider does matter. I don't dismiss your opinion out-of-hand.

Thanks for your responses, and for the forthcoming link to T100.

T100 is the name of the underlying dataset you are citing, available with just a few clicks from the link you posted. It has maket level data by airline. I said I can't match your numbers because I went to the link and nowhere did your numbers appear at any of the various views.

The airlines buy a version of the data that has been post-processed to parse through the regional carrier data and assign them to the correct Major. There are some small discrepancies to reality because they cannot tell which Major a carrier is flying for when the same regional is flying for both carriers within the same market, to my understanding thus is largely an issue with Skywest since they fly for almost everyone.

You are skewing this argument towards what you define as the "largest" what I'm saying is that it doesn't matter what you think because Enilria's comment is not using your definition and neither would the DOT.

Finally, it's a moot point because as has been explained, even on your chosen metric Southwest is third largest when a proper accounting is done.
 
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LotsaRunway
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:22 pm

MaxxFlyer wrote:
Aside from the comments on WN/B6 merging - why does Southwest HAVE to grow? They can likely eek out a few more flights, but do they need to become a significant player at BOS?


Why does WN have to grow at BOS? The simple answer is that they don't. They can sit back and let others dominate a very large market. Obviously, WN is a competitor and they want more of the Boston pie and I believe they are willing to take losses for a while in an attempt to grow. I think there is room to push AA, DL and UA, but B6 is the gorilla in the room and has a very loyal following.

tomaheath wrote:
georgiabill wrote:
The way WN treats MHT passengers they should close the station. They keep down sizing when markets exist.

I'm going to have to disagree with that statement. What kind of issues have you had with the way you were treated by the WN employees at MHT? I've always found them very friendly and never had any issues there.


I understand the frustration felt by georgiabill. I try to travel MHT when coming to New England, but with all the schedule trimming and reduced options, you almost feel punished for your loyalty. But MHT is very fortunate to have WN and needs to support it the best they can.

airliner371 wrote:
Yes, I'm sure they "treat" you all terribly. :roll:

Give me a break, MHT is lucky to have the WN service it does today, ...


I don't agree with this. With few exceptions WN carefully picks large enough markets to sustain their service. Even accounting for the massive leakage from New Hampshire to Logan, there is plenty of demand to sustain, otherwise you would see a token 3 flights a day to BWI and lots of talk about it being cut. WN loads at MHT are very good. WN is just trying to squeeze up the yield on those flights. Besides, you need a good market like MHT to counter-balance the losses WN must be taking on some routes at BOS. :shock:

MaxxFlyer wrote:
Wasn't WN downsizing at both MHT and PVD a given once they entered Boston? Depending where you live in the area, the alternative airports may be more convenient. That doesn't mean WN would keep the same number of flights and destinations. A lot of people still feel WN should go back to the now ancient idea of serving secondary airports/cities. They are making much more $$$ with the new business model.


Actually, there were quotes in the New Hampshire newspapers from WN saying their Boston service would complement their MHT (and PVD) services. Read that as you may, but is gives the impression they wanted people to think MHT would not be cut down. I don't think that WN intended to cannibalize PVD or MHT by starting BOS and offering lower fares there, and I don't think they cut service to DEN and LAS directly because of BOS. But I do think in WN's desire to compete and grow BOS, there are fewer airplanes to go around and unless long-haul O&D from MHT/PVD to DEN/LAS is really stellar, they would rather connect those markets through MDW or BWI to free up planes. Yes MHT and PVD filled up those long-hauls, but WN wants then to be full of O&D do do connections elsewhere.

Will WN keep throwing assets at BOS to grow the market like they did with SEA, PDX, DEN, etc, or will they stabilize and settle back like the did with PHL? That is up for debate.
 
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BobPatterson
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 8:54 pm

Rdh3e wrote:
BobPatterson wrote:

By the way, I think what you consider does matter. I don't dismiss your opinion out-of-hand.

Thanks for your responses, and for the forthcoming link to T100.

T100 is the name of the underlying dataset you are citing, available with just a few clicks from the link you posted. It has maket level data by airline. I said I can't match your numbers because I went to the link and nowhere did your numbers appear at any of the various views.

The airlines buy a version of the data that has been post-processed to parse through the regional carrier data and assign them to the correct Major. There are some small discrepancies to reality because they cannot tell which Major a carrier is flying for when the same regional is flying for both carriers within the same market, to my understanding thus is largely an issue with Skywest since they fly for almost everyone.

You are skewing this argument towards what you define as the "largest" what I'm saying is that it doesn't matter what you think because Enilria's comment is not using your definition and neither would the DOT.

Finally, it's a moot point because as has been explained, even on your chosen metric Southwest is third largest when a proper accounting is done.


First, I apologize for posting a link (above) that did not take you directly to the page where you could download the T1 data (part of T-100 dank bank). I have now corrected that link (above) and it works.

Second, Enilria made a comment to the effect that a merger would not be permitted between Southwest (largest domestic airline) and JetBlue. You responded by saying "WN is not the largest carrier domestically". I then posted the May 2016 revenue pax numbers from the T1 report. You disagreed with my using that metric, so here we are.

I hope that Enilria will explain the metric(s) by which he considers Southwest to be the largest.

Just today the following report was released showing 2014 and 2015 data:

Passenger Travel Facts and Figures 2016
U.S. Department of Transportation
Bureau of Transportation Statistics

September 9, 2016

http://www.rita.dot.gov/bts/sites/rita. ... 6_full.pdf Page 23

Table 2-8 Top 10 Airlines by Domestic Enplanements (millions): 2014 and 2015

............................................................2014..........2015

01 Southwest........................................126.7.........142.5
02 American & US Airways....................117.1.........118.1
03 Delta................................................106.4........115.1
04 United................................................64.8..........69.3
05 JetBlue..............................................26.5..........28.8
06 SkyWest............................................26.0..........27.8
07 ExpressJet.........................................28.0..........24,0
08 Alaska...............................................19.2..........21.3
09 Spirit..................................................12.6..........16.0
10 Republic.............................................12.8..........13.3

"Southwest carried the most passengers from domestic airports of any airline in 2014 and 2015. Some of the 12.4 percent year-over-year growth can be attributed to the joint reporting of
Southwest and AirTran following their 2011 merger. In second place, American and US Airways saw a 0.9 increase in domestic enplanements. US Airways, which merged with American in
2013, began reporting jointly with American in July 2015. Of the other top 10 airlines, only ExpressJet, a regional airline that provides contract service for mainline carriers, reported a decrease."

[end quote from report}

I do not see how, with "proper accounting" (distributing Delta Connection -- Endeavor and ExpressJet numbers among the big three) the rankings will change much. But I hope you will do that accounting and post your results here. I will love to learn from you.
Facts are fragile things. Treat them with care. Sources are important. Alternative facts do not exist.
 
MaxxFlyer
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 9:08 pm

LotsaRunway wrote:
MaxxFlyer wrote:
Aside from the comments on WN/B6 merging - why does Southwest HAVE to grow? They can likely eek out a few more flights, but do they need to become a significant player at BOS?


Why does WN have to grow at BOS? The simple answer is that they don't. They can sit back and let others dominate a very large market. Obviously, WN is a competitor and they want more of the Boston pie and I believe they are willing to take losses for a while in an attempt to grow. I think there is room to push AA, DL and UA, but B6 is the gorilla in the room and has a very loyal following.

tomaheath wrote:
georgiabill wrote:
The way WN treats MHT passengers they should close the station. They keep down sizing when markets exist.

I'm going to have to disagree with that statement. What kind of issues have you had with the way you were treated by the WN employees at MHT? I've always found them very friendly and never had any issues there.


I understand the frustration felt by georgiabill. I try to travel MHT when coming to New England, but with all the schedule trimming and reduced options, you almost feel punished for your loyalty. But MHT is very fortunate to have WN and needs to support it the best they can.

airliner371 wrote:
Yes, I'm sure they "treat" you all terribly. :roll:

Give me a break, MHT is lucky to have the WN service it does today, ...




I don't agree with this. With few exceptions WN carefully picks large enough markets to sustain their service. Even accounting for the massive leakage from New Hampshire to Logan, there is plenty of demand to sustain, otherwise you would see a token 3 flights a day to BWI and lots of talk about it being cut. WN loads at MHT are very good. WN is just trying to squeeze up the yield on those flights. Besides, you need a good market like MHT to counter-balance the losses WN must be taking on some routes at BOS. :shock:

MaxxFlyer wrote:
Wasn't WN downsizing at both MHT and PVD a given once they entered Boston? Depending where you live in the area, the alternative airports may be more convenient. That doesn't mean WN would keep the same number of flights and destinations. A lot of people still feel WN should go back to the now ancient idea of serving secondary airports/cities. They are making much more $$$ with the new business model.


Actually, there were quotes in the New Hampshire newspapers from WN saying their Boston service would complement their MHT (and PVD) services. Read that as you may, but is gives the impression they wanted people to think MHT would not be cut down. I don't think that WN intended to cannibalize PVD or MHT by starting BOS and offering lower fares there, and I don't think they cut service to DEN and LAS directly because of BOS. But I do think in WN's desire to compete and grow BOS, there are fewer airplanes to go around and unless long-haul O&D from MHT/PVD to DEN/LAS is really stellar, they would rather connect those markets through MDW or BWI to free up planes. Yes MHT and PVD filled up those long-hauls, but WN wants then to be full of O&D do do connections elsewhere.

Will WN keep throwing assets at BOS to grow the market like they did with SEA, PDX, DEN, etc, or will they stabilize and settle back like the did with PHL? That is up for debate.


By that argument, every airline should flood every major market to gain market share and grow, no? WN will never be able to duplicate what they have done in cities they once avoided (DEN, LGA, DCA) Just like they will never overtake B6 in BOS.
 
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N717TW
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 9:32 pm

VS4ever wrote:
[

Gate 15-Jul 14-Jul
A18 10 11
A19 9 9
A20 11 10
A21 5 5
A22 4 4



Their lease gives them full rights to all five gates but WN gives preference to A18-20 and are only using A21-22 for RONs and when the other three are occupied. Why? Besides A18/19/20 being closer to the tunnel and better for customers, they are also easier to park at and require far less maneuvering/creating tug work to get out of. The alley between the main terminal and the satellite gets really narrow around 21 and 22. So in short, its sorta like your own home. you park in the spot that easier to pull into from the street and closer to the door (at least that is what I do)
 
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N717TW
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Mon Sep 12, 2016 10:33 pm

This question seems to come up every so often, and the answer always settles down to basic answer. There are a few simplistic explanations for this:

1. More people want to fly from Logan than from other airports. Boston is the business, financial, cultural, intellectual, and even political "hub" of New England and with no disrespect to my friends from R.I., Maine, etc. there is just fewer people who want to fly to or from PVD, MHT, PWM, etc. WN wants their money and therefore provides service to BOS...likely at the expense of regional airports.
2. For every 1 person who doesn't like the big airport and goes the other way to PVD, etc., there are 2 people who want to fly non-stop and another (at least) 5 people from whom getting to BOS is easier.
3. Logan is much easier to reach from North (and now West) of the City than South. The Expressway itself adds an extra 15-20 minutes on the commute to the South. So Manchester, N.H.'s natural catchment area has to compete with Logan more than PVD does. Plus NH and Maine are not the most populous places on earth and there are ever fewer people to draw from. MNT grew by puling traffic from within the 128 communities. Once the big-dig was done and B6 pulled fares down, all that metro Boston traffic was bound to return.
4. JetBlue. If you live in the Boston area and aren't going to be a slave to DL/AA/UA, why would you pick anyone other than B6? For most Boston leisure passengers, B6 goes to all the destinations they want to go more often (no offense to the very lovely MCI) and the product is superior. Even for business traffic, B6 has most of the top business markets covered. WN keeps its traffic limited to its (I know, I know) hubs and mid-continent cities that B6 doesn't fly to.

WN has a lot of service from BOS but they aren't the local airline and if you spend time hanging around a WN baggage claim (as I have while waiting for my wife to pick me up) you'll find that more than half the people aren't from "ahround hare". It wouldn't surprise me if BOS is the same as SEA and PHL where AS and US' strong customer base and lower cost structure made WN a less compelling option and equally makes the station less profitable compared to other places they can fly.
 
rbavfan
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Tue Sep 13, 2016 12:07 am

Rdh3e wrote:
BobPatterson wrote:
Rdh3e wrote:
WN is not the largest carrier domestically.


Am I somehow misunderstanding the May numbers for Revenue Pax enplaned?

JetBlue Airways...........................2,700,059
United Air Lines Inc......................6,450,082
American Airlines Inc..................10,391,012
Delta Air Lines Inc......................10,745,799
Southwest Airlines Co.,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,12,996,806

Capacity does not vary based on load factor. Size is not a measure of usage. A table that holds 10 for dinner but only 3 people use it is not a smaller table than a table of 4 which has 4 people eating at it.

I also cannot match the numbers you've posted, where are they from? Did you exclude AK/HI?

For all of US to all of US (which includes territories) T100 shows both AA and DL ahead of WN on your usage metric. On all capacity metrics they are both larger than WN as well.



Those are seats only for the month, not the number of seats available.
 
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LotsaRunway
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Wed Sep 14, 2016 3:13 pm

Having just returned from a west coast run and seeing how WN has grown to "own" the Los Angeles basin to San Francisco Bay area shuttle type service, and it got me wondering. WN does really well in the high frequency, high demand services. Look also at Dallas/Houston/Austin/San Antonio. Why wouldn't WN take a try at the Northeast Shuttle? OK, maybe not yet due to slot restrictions, but that can change in time. WN has a bunch of BOS-BWI flights, but no BOS-DCA. Given the demand and fares, that would be a natural place to grow with a shuttle type of service. A tough one to crack due to the competition, but then again, so was the west coast service.
 
aaflyer777
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Re: How can WN grow in the Boston Area?

Wed Sep 14, 2016 4:07 pm

LotsaRunway wrote:
Having just returned from a west coast run and seeing how WN has grown to "own" the Los Angeles basin to San Francisco Bay area shuttle type service, and it got me wondering. WN does really well in the high frequency, high demand services. Look also at Dallas/Houston/Austin/San Antonio. Why wouldn't WN take a try at the Northeast Shuttle? OK, maybe not yet due to slot restrictions, but that can change in time. WN has a bunch of BOS-BWI flights, but no BOS-DCA. Given the demand and fares, that would be a natural place to grow with a shuttle type of service. A tough one to crack due to the competition, but then again, so was the west coast service.


I'd love to see them try BOS-DCA but I doubt its gonna happen. WN just can't offer the perks AA and DL can such as frequencies, dedicated shuttle gates, assigned seats, a first class cabin, etc. B6 can make it work due to their hub and popularity in BOS, but WN just doesn't have that kind of feed here.

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