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fca767
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London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 9:30 am

Now that Virgin and British Midland's route is gone, i've noticed that the prices are higher now.

It's a really clear case for the need of competition
 
oldannyboy
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 9:38 am

I'd like to see someone operate from LCY again...
 
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HGL
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 9:41 am

fca767 wrote:
It's a really clear case for the need of competition


Why did other airlines withdraw? Was it that competition led to unsustainable prices? If airlines were not earning enough to justify the route, it makes sense that they would withdraw from it. This means the remaining carrier may be able to raise fares to a more economic level but they may still be constrained by competition from road or rail transport providers.
Qui omnes despicit, omnibus displicit.
 
PhilDur
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 9:43 am

Probably because a train ticket price starts at 81 GBP and train trip time is 2:08 hrs from city center to city center (Euston to Picadilly st). Its fast access without any reservation, it's just instant booking. For short trips (less than 3 hrs) train is an option you always must consider.
 
dstc47
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 10:01 am

With the inevitable airport related delays, particularly bad at the security check at Manchester, a point to point journey from Manchester city to London city makes little sense, even for aviation enthusiasts, as a rail trip will be much faster, if not much cheaper. So not a good option unless you live or do business near both airports. For persons connecting to long distance flights from LHR then air carriers without a large long haul operation at LHR are always going to struggle. Indeed many passengers will opt for connections over CDG, AMS or FRA, or more recently Dubai or Abu Dhabi, rather than a transfer at LHR.
 
calt03
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 10:04 am

You really can't compete with the train at 130mins total travel time.

Direct trains run from London Euston to Manchester Piccadilly every 20 minutes, and average journey times are around 2 hours 10 minutes.

Source: https://www.thetrainline.com/train-time ... manchester
 
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eurowings
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 10:10 am

If travelling point-to-point, the Virgin train is the preferred option as it takes just over 2 hours and departs every 20 minutes from very early until very late, running from Manchester City Centre to Central London and offers a mix of cheaper advance non-flexible tickets (from around £8) and more expensive flexible tickets (from £81 return). Unless your destination is a lot closer to Heathrow or Manchester Airport the plane is unlikely to be the fastest option under normal circumstances.

Point-to-point, those on a budget can also take the express buses which depart around every hour and start at £1.50 for a single ticket. Or there's the option of taking a mix of cheaper and slower trains via Stoke-on-Trent (Northern Rail and London Midland).

As for carrying connecting passengers then there is perhaps a case for more competition to convey non-British Airways/oneworld traffic. However, as Virgin failed with their Little Red venture it's hard to imagine who'd be willing to give it a chance with the expense of Heathrow slots. There was talk of Flybe introducing services and they are able to enact extensive codeshare arrangements but it seems that they consider it unlikely to be viable with the current situation.
"Freddie Laker may be at peace with his Maker, but he is persona non grata with IATA."- HRH Duke of Edinburgh
 
Andy33
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 10:17 am

It's notable that Virgin Little Red closed their Manchester route well before the Edinburgh and Aberdeen ones.
You can't force airlines to fly a route if they lose money on it. When the UK and EU competition authorities investigated the takeover of British Midland by IAG/BA they found a possible monopoly situation on six routes, and prescribed remedies (none of which worked). Manchester wasn't one of the six. By the time of the takeover, BD's traffic had declined to such an extent that they were flying many of their Manchester rotations with E135/E145s from their regional fleet. just to sit on the LHR slots. Just a couple of rotations justified an A319 or A320.
 
DobboDobbo
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 10:25 am

The only point to point service which might work would be to London City. Everything else is just a feed to BAs long haul network (which is its self declining as passengers increasingly choose to transfer elsewhere if no direct service exists).
 
Fiend
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 10:34 am

As somebody who lives in the far north of England I see no reason why it's worth travelling down to London to catch a flight. I travel to Thailand 2 - 3 times a year and have plenty of options to get there without travelling all the way down to London. MAN, NCL, GLA and EDI are all within a 2 hour drive for me and although it means I can't fly direct to Thailand it's a lot easier than the hassle of the journey all the way down to London.
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KaiTak747
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 10:46 am

As others have pointed out very few passengers solely fly LHR-MAN as the train and probably even driving is quicker and easier.

The Little Red and BMI flights existed to feed their LHR networks, but Little Red bled money and BMI no longer exists.

The BA fares are kept in check by competition from other hubs (CDG, AMS, FRA, DUB, DXB, AUH, DOH etc.) as well as from rail and road.

The same goes for LBA, the flight only exists to feed BA's LHR network, but BA have to compete with EI and KL as well as LBA's neighbouring airports.
 
TC957
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 11:06 am

There's always the Flybe service from SOU for those in the South. It's all very well having fast trains from Euston, but for those down in Sussex & Kent I bet would welcome someone like easyJet doing LGW - MAN, since it sometimes takes longer to get to Euston than the train takes from there up to Manchester.
 
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vhtje
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 11:10 am

DobboDobbo wrote:
..... BAs long haul network (which is its self declining as passengers increasingly choose to transfer elsewhere if no direct service exists).


Huh? Evidence, please.
I only turn left when boarding aircraft. Well, mostly. All right, sometimes. OH OKAY - rarely.
 
DobboDobbo
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 11:23 am

vhtje wrote:
DobboDobbo wrote:
..... BAs long haul network (which is its self declining as passengers increasingly choose to transfer elsewhere if no direct service exists).


Huh? Evidence, please.


Have just re-read my post and it may not have been clear that I was referring specifically to the MAN-LHR shuttle and not to BA's wider network!

In the case of the shuttle, see below.

Have a gander at the CAA stats. At the time of writing it is a few months behind, but this is a long term trend. The numbers can be found via the link below.

https://www.caa.co.uk/Data-and-analysis ... port-data/

This long term decline is one of the reasons why a BA return to MAN on a larger scale is no longer ruled out, but is not on the "immediate radar".
 
rutankrd
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 11:42 am

Walk up airfares have always been high between Manchester and Heathrow on BA because without a few £350-£400 sales on each flight the connectors bleed dark burgundy

Contrary to the A-netters myth connections for BA and alliance partners codeshares won't sustain this route alone when they book x pence in the pound.

Too many connections and code shares is what killed British Midland off.
 
Armodeen
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 12:09 pm

I used to travel this route very regularly, but now it is far too expensive to consider on most occasions sadly. For example 2 weeks ago I got a one way on virgin trains for £48 in first class. BA wanted £139 one way.

I've also been driving. I tend to only fly to Heathrow now if using Avios or on a connecting itinerary.
 
TurnaroudUK
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 2:20 pm

It's notable that Virgin Little Red closed their Manchester route well before the Edinburgh and Aberdeen ones.
You can't force airlines to fly a route if they lose money on it.

The MAN slots were VS own LHR slots the ABZ and EDI given to them by the commision thats why the MAN route was axed first
 
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ro1960
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 3:13 pm

Any plans to build high speed train stations at LHR and LGW? It could be a good option for UK to International connections.
Do not compensate for the lack of skills with a surplus of opinion.


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rutankrd
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 4:22 pm

ro1960 wrote:
Any plans to build high speed train stations at LHR and LGW? It could be a good option for UK to International connections.


You would like to think so however consider this

Actually HS2 could have had a spur to Heathrow however the current plan sees the HS2 with a suburban station at Old Oak Common (West London) where HS2 will converge with the nearing completion Crossrail1 (Elizabethan) line.

A stop and change of platform (and levels) will be necessary.

The London Euston Terminal of HS2 will not have direct connections to Crossrail1 (Elizabethan) lines, necessitating a trip on the Northern line Tube to the new Tottenham Court Road Station.

And all that is 7-10 years away.

From the northern cities HS2 isn't really going to improve the rail journey experience to the London Airports very much.

Currently rail travel as far north as Manchester and Leeds can be done in 2 to 2.5 hours into Euston or St Pancras/Kings Cross.

On arrival in London City you have a dilemma how to get to Heathrow from the Northern Terminal Stations especially at Euston as it requires you to vacate the station turn right and march up Euston Road for about 700 yards to Euston Square Tube station board a Hammersmith and City tube up to Paddington. Then get fleeced on the Heathrow Express !

Or worse its down the tube to the Northern Line down to Leicester Square change to the Piccadilly line (much cheaper) but will take you all most half the time to travel the 14 miles that your previous 180-230 mile journey took.

As for your international connections Manchester and Birmingham are developing substantial networks that reduce the need for transitting LHR and/or LGW at all.

In the case of Manchester more city pairs are connected than are available from Heathrow and add the one stop ME3 /*A and sky team connections and even Oneworld connections via Helsinki/JFK/ORD/HKG and IAG via Dublin the need to transit LHR becomes less pressing every season imo.

Frankly only if you chose to fly BA is it even worth flying Manchester- LHR- beyond but that's a personal choice for the customer to make.

In fact for much/most of the north of England Manchester Airport should become the obvious choice and already boasts a substantial and extensive UK domestic flight network serving just about every region (cepting Wales !) And a direct rail connection with services as far as Edinburgh/Glasgow/Newcastle/Leeds/Liverpool and south to Crewe where fast trains connect to Birmingham and London.

A nice modern tram service also connects the airport with South Manchester suburbs.

Manchester is a serious International Airport .
 
winginit
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 5:23 pm

fca767 wrote:
Now that Virgin and British Midland's route is gone, i've noticed that the prices are higher now.

It's a really clear case for the need of competition


You'll find that abundant competition exists in the forms of trains and cars.
 
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vhtje
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 5:42 pm

DobboDobbo wrote:
Have just re-read my post and it may not have been clear that I was referring specifically to the MAN-LHR shuttle and not to BA's wider network!


Got it. Thanks for the swift clarification !
I only turn left when boarding aircraft. Well, mostly. All right, sometimes. OH OKAY - rarely.
 
KaiTak747
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 5:59 pm

rutankrd wrote:
Walk up airfares have always been high between Manchester and Heathrow on BA because without a few £350-£400 sales on each flight the connectors bleed dark burgundy

Contrary to the A-netters myth connections for BA and alliance partners codeshares won't sustain this route alone when they book x pence in the pound.

Too many connections and code shares is what killed British Midland off.


Flights that only exist to feed connections can be profitable if they carry high yielding passengers into the hub. The MAN flight could be a big network contribution to BA, or as you say could be bleeding money.

The flights could carry a decent number of people connecting onto long haul fights in Club World, or be full of people on bargain Y tickets to places in Europe.

Perhaps the walk up fares are high because it is better to fill these flights with high yielding passengers connecting with long haul flights.

But definitely short haul connections are very low yielding, and really was not viable for BMI.
 
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Openside007
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 6:03 pm

Don't be too sure of the superiority of the train if you need to transit through London from Euston. Just over two years ago, a colleague and I had a "Top Gear" style race back from Manchester city centre (Bridge Street) in early afternoon. He had to get back to his station (just south of Crawley) and took the train from Manchester Piccadilly, whilst I had to get back to Hampton (near Heathrow) by BA from Manchester to Heathrow and then the car from Heathrow. With the train times, he had an hour's head start on me. He was badly slowed down by the transit across London from Euston to Victoria (direct Tube line) and then rail to his station south of Crawley. I beat him by an hour!!!!! The moral here is that if you're close to the two city centres then the train wins. Otherwise air is always best!!!
 
DobboDobbo
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 8:08 pm

[list=][/list]
vhtje wrote:
DobboDobbo wrote:
Have just re-read my post and it may not have been clear that I was referring specifically to the MAN-LHR shuttle and not to BA's wider network!


Got it. Thanks for the swift clarification !



No problem!
 
User001
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 8:33 pm

One could argue that the decline of the Heathrow route has benefitted the direct destination market from Manchester.

Look at it this way, MAN now has direct flights to Beijing, San Fransisco, Boston, Los Angeles, Houston, Muscat, Hong Kong and so on, a scenario which was in-imaginable as little as 5 years ago. And the good think is, it's not just low cost leisure carriers taking advantage, it's airlines like Hainan, Cathay Pacific, Virgin Atlantic and Oman Air.

It's interesting to see one of the prolific code-share airlines on the BMI flights to LHR was Air Canada, which since BMI were brought out, Air Canada has re-started MAN flights via the rouge brand.

There is of course, no evidence to support the theory that reduced LHR means more direct flights, but, co-incidence will only be part of the story.
 
factsonly
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 8:51 pm

Here are the May 2016 passenger data for several MAN routes. The data indicate that LHR is no longer the leading destination at MAN and losing significance as other hubs take more and more traffic. With an ever increasing number of direct global destinations MAN offers an attractive route network, so less need for transfers at LHR.

1. MAN-AMS 85.455 +15%
2. MAN-DUB 78.705 +17%
3. MAN-LHR 54.079 -8%
4. MAN-CDG 39.862 +5%
5. MAN-FRA 30.811 -7%
6. MAN-CPH 29.905 +17%
7. MAN-MAD 17.725 +128%
8. MAN-BRU 17.135 +13%
 
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ro1960
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 9:01 pm

rutankrd wrote:
Manchester is a serious International Airport .


Thanks for the detailed explanation.
Do not compensate for the lack of skills with a surplus of opinion.


You may like my airport photos:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/aeroports
 
DobboDobbo
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Re: London - Manchester (no competing airline)

Wed Aug 31, 2016 9:10 pm

The thing to point out in the statistics is that on MAN-LHR there is only BA. On MAN-AMS/FRA/DUB/CDG/CPH/MAD/BRU there are a number of other operators (e.g. Ryanair, Easyjet, Flybe) so these figures include much more point to point traffic.

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