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NYCRuss
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Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Fri Oct 21, 2016 6:00 pm

It's plausible that oneworld will not have AB as a member in the future. If that day comes to pass, oneworld's major airlines in Europe will be IAG's three on the western end, AY in Helsinki, and S7 in Russia. That leaves a lot of space, with a lot of people, in the middle.

Will oneworld be fine with those five airlines? If not, how do they address the gap?
 
LupineChemist
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Fri Oct 21, 2016 6:11 pm

I think everyone has been pondering a world without AB in general for awhile now.

EY will pull the plug eventually but the only real niche I can see as an alliance that it gives in the feed to AUH, but QR has the rest of the Middle East so....meh
 
konrad
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Fri Oct 21, 2016 6:19 pm

NYCRuss wrote:
It's plausible that oneworld will not have AB as a member in the future. If that day comes to pass, oneworld's major airlines in Europe will be IAG's three on the western end, AY in Helsinki, and S7 in Russia. That leaves a lot of space, with a lot of people, in the middle.


I think that LOT would happily jump in to fill the gap.
Especially if given a prospect to be admitted into the BA/AA transatlantic JV.
 
mhkansan
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Fri Oct 21, 2016 6:23 pm

Germany needs a second network carrier and Oneworld needs AirBerlin. Its crazy to me that they cannot work out their issues there. Germany is a huge, wealthy market with a high demand for air travel.
 
Seat1F
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Fri Oct 21, 2016 6:36 pm

Did AB really add much value to OW? I always felt AB was always more about "what it could be for OW in the future" rather than "what it actually delivers to OW today".

Assuming this all plays out as it seems it will (AB out of OW), will we see AA add additional flights between the US and Germany? Will AA try MIA to Germany for the third time?
 
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NYCRuss
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Fri Oct 21, 2016 7:12 pm

konrad wrote:
NYCRuss wrote:
It's plausible that oneworld will not have AB as a member in the future. If that day comes to pass, oneworld's major airlines in Europe will be IAG's three on the western end, AY in Helsinki, and S7 in Russia. That leaves a lot of space, with a lot of people, in the middle.

I think that LOT would happily jump in to fill the gap.
Especially if given a prospect to be admitted into the BA/AA transatlantic JV.

CAPA wrote about LOT last year, including the prospect of joining oneworld and becoming part of that transatlantic JV:
http://centreforaviation.com/analysis/l ... kyo-231439
LOT had the opportunity to leave Star Alliance at the end of 2015, without paying an exit fee. LOT chose to stay. That makes me believe that the only way that LOT will join oneworld is if IAG buys them. I'm not holding my breath on that happening.


mhkansan wrote:
Germany needs a second network carrier and Oneworld needs AirBerlin. Its crazy to me that they cannot work out their issues there. Germany is a huge, wealthy market with a high demand for air travel.

I agree. Unfortunately AB does not look viable. If the latest attempt to reorganize it actually succeeds, then perhaps things will work out.


Seat1F wrote:
Did AB really add much value to OW?

Not that I'm aware of.

Seat1F wrote:
I always felt AB was always more about "what it could be for OW in the future" rather than "what it actually delivers to OW today".

That's how I see it too.

Seat1F wrote:
Assuming this all plays out as it seems it will (AB out of OW), will we see AA add additional flights between the US and Germany? Will AA try MIA to Germany for the third time?

\_(ツ)_/¯
 
stlgph
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Fri Oct 21, 2016 11:44 pm

The failure of American & Air Berlin to make Dusseldorf/Chicago work is rather telling of the Air Berlin value to OneWorld.

I can see the arguments for LOT Polish coming over but I can see the arguments for them staying in Star Alliance.
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 12:00 am

AB continues to be deeply in the red. AB under the current setup will have to see continued cash infusions from EY, though with AZ and JU under their thumbs also the benefit to EY that comes from AB must be questionable at this point since AZ also bleeds 1 million a day. AA and AB not getting along is attributable to 1) AB not being part of the TATL JV and 2) EY's continued involvement in AB (without that there wouldn't be an AB at this point) and there's no indication that either root cause will change soon, notwithstanding a sale of AB to LH.

For AB that means looking for someone else to foot the bill, and EY doesn't seem to mind if that someone is LH Group, though EY will likely want to recuperate some of the money it sunk into AB over the past decade. Germany has 80 million people, if 80% of the 320 million Americans can be handled by 4 airlines, then Germany can do one major domestic airline. After all, the EU and Germany also features lots of competition from fast trains and buses, in addition to the LCCs.

*O seems to have suffered quite a bit in Europe, with MA being gone, it's now down to IAG and AY, but that's life sometimes. Perhaps AB exiting will encourage IAG / AA to expand in Europe. As for LO changing from *A to *O, IAG / AA would have to make a pretty sweet offer for that to happen.
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 11:19 am

With or without AB, OW's hole in the middle of Europe exists. AB is not really adding any value to OW. It has always been primarily a leisure airline. It might have wanted to get out of that image but apparently it was not successful. It's not providing any meaningful connectivity to intercontinental OW flights coming into Germany, let alone Europe as a whole. The hole in the middle of Europe doesn't look destructive for OW. For passengers coming across from North America, LHR and DUB are ideally located and can provide coverage to connect to much of Europe. For those coming from South America, MAD is again located ideally to connect to all of Europe. As long as IB/BA/EI can cover most of the European destinations via LHR/DUB/MAD, OW secures its place in trans-Atlantic market.

Coming from the east is where the gap is. HEL is the only location providing meaningful connectivity for OW passengers coming from the east of Europe. Finnair is going alone on that with some participation from JAL. CX and QF are not jumping on that. QF is not interested as it has its EK partnership. CX is more interested in providing one-stop connectivity via HKG and just fly the 12+ hr flights from HKG to the middle of Europe, bypassing any entry connection hubs within Europe. All things considered, OW will not be impacted in any way if AB is gone.
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YIMBY
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 12:57 pm

NYCRuss wrote:
It's plausible that oneworld will not have AB as a member in the future. If that day comes to pass, oneworld's major airlines in Europe will be IAG's three on the western end, AY in Helsinki, and S7 in Russia. That leaves a lot of space, with a lot of people, in the middle.

Will oneworld be fine with those five airlines? If not, how do they address the gap?


It will not be fine but it never has been very fine with a struggling AB either. I think it is safe for 1W to assume AB gone now.

There are no significant airlines left to join OneWorld in the middle Europe. Any regional airlines to grow up?
LOT should change alliance but it chose not and there are obstacles for that - I do not expect any changes before it is bought by someone. And they might as well go to SkyTeam.

However, nothing prohibits OneWorld airlines to start flying into and around Germany. They can make "tag-on" flights and triangle flights if they do not want to make a base that is more risky. At least Iberia, Lingus and Finnair can fly freely, and most probably BA also, though not to talk about S7. Vueling may be the first but isn't it more a question of connections for which an LCC is not that apt. A base or a middle-European airline would help to arrange connecting flights to MAD, DUB and HEL, maybe even new mini-hubs like DUS or wherever AA, LA, JL etc would land. Given that most people reserve their flights in the net choosing the cheapest decent alternative, it is just to be competitive against Lufthansa Group (and also AF-KLM) and to provide better service than LCC's (reliability and connections).

I won't hold my breath, anyway,
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 1:51 pm

I agree with everybody's opinions here on this one, BUT with one caveat: Germany is the strongest economy in Europe and a big country. Demand exists, and there needs to be a strong one world competitor in that country. Currently, Air Berlin does codeshare with American on transatlantic flights; EY also has a relationship with American. It would not be impossible to add AB to the transatlantic JV with AA, AY, BA, and eventually EI, and would make a very strong network. DUS could be a decent hub, and if AB can survive long enough for it to open, the new BER would make a great hub as well. Unfortunately, TXL is in pretty bad shape now (because it wasn't supposed to still be in operation).
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 1:51 pm

I agree with everybody's opinions here on this one, BUT with one caveat: Germany is the strongest economy in Europe and a big country. Demand exists, and there needs to be a strong one world competitor in that country. Currently, Air Berlin does codeshare with American on transatlantic flights; EY also has a relationship with American. It would not be impossible to add AB to the transatlantic JV with AA, AY, BA, and eventually EI, and would make a very strong network. DUS could be a decent hub, and if AB can survive long enough for it to open, the new BER would make a great hub as well. Unfortunately, TXL is in pretty bad shape now (because it wasn't supposed to still be in operation). But if AB were to go away, they unfortunately probably wouldn't be missed
.
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 1:52 pm

The main reasons for Oneworld inviting Air Berlin were to a) give AA a partner in Germany and b) it was thought having a member airline in Germany would attract a Chinese airline into the alliance.

Neither objectives have been achieved so I think Oneworld will survive without Air Berlin.
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 2:01 pm

I agree with everybody's opinions here on this one, BUT with one caveat: Germany is the strongest economy in Europe and a big country. Demand exists, and there needs to be a strong one world competitor in that country. Currently, Air Berlin does codeshare with American on transatlantic flights; EY also has a relationship with American. It would not be impossible to add AB to the transatlantic JV with AA, AY, BA, and eventually EI, and would make a very strong network. DUS could be a decent hub, and if AB can survive long enough for it to open, the new BER would make a great hub as well. Unfortunately, TXL is in pretty bad shape now (because it wasn't supposed to still be in operation).
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 2:20 pm

For me I think the most likely thing we will see is IAG move in the German market in the form of a VY base, I still very much believe that within the new few years we will see IAG buying WIZZ and rolling them into VY at this stage you really will have a pan European LCC in the IAG group and that will feed into one world
Must think up a new one soon, slow moving brain trying to get into gear ;)
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 2:37 pm

raylee67 wrote:
With or without AB, OW's hole in the middle of Europe exists. AB is not really adding any value to OW. It has always been primarily a leisure airline. It might have wanted to get out of that image but apparently it was not successful. It's not providing any meaningful connectivity to intercontinental OW flights coming into Germany, let alone Europe as a whole. The hole in the middle of Europe doesn't look destructive for OW. For passengers coming across from North America, LHR and DUB are ideally located and can provide coverage to connect to much of Europe. For those coming from South America, MAD is again located ideally to connect to all of Europe. As long as IB/BA/EI can cover most of the European destinations via LHR/DUB/MAD, OW secures its place in trans-Atlantic market.

Coming from the east is where the gap is. HEL is the only location providing meaningful connectivity for OW passengers coming from the east of Europe. Finnair is going alone on that with some participation from JAL. CX and QF are not jumping on that. QF is not interested as it has its EK partnership. CX is more interested in providing one-stop connectivity via HKG and just fly the 12+ hr flights from HKG to the middle of Europe, bypassing any entry connection hubs within Europe. All things considered, OW will not be impacted in any way if AB is gone.


This is an intelligent and cogent analysis... except that it (along with multiple other posts) completely ignores the presence of QR and its DOH hub, which funnels lots of traffic from the Middle East, Africa, the Indian Subcontinent, Southeast and East Asia, and Down Under to cities all over Europe, including the connecting hubs at MAD, LHR, and HEL.
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 8:06 pm

German N24 newstickers are reporting AA is pulling the codeshare with AB.
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 8:36 pm

The entering of Air Berlin was too much of a risk on a market dominated by Lufthansa and affiliates. Add to that the really weird decisions taken by their management, like buying Niki or Belair and the mix is very volatile, and is now blowing up.

Sad, I think they offer a nice service, but they just can't compete against Lufthansa and against their own bad decisions.
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Rajahdhani
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sat Oct 22, 2016 9:05 pm

cougar15 wrote:
German N24 newstickers are reporting AA is pulling the codeshare with AB.


http://www.aero.de/news-25278/American-Airlines-ueberdenkt-Codeshares-mit-Air-Berlin.html
Air Berlin stockt ihren USA-Flugplan im Sommer 2017 von 55 auf 78 Nonstop-Linien pro Woche auf, ist jenseits des Atlantik möglicherweise bald aber auf sich allein gestellt. American Airlines will sich nach sechs Jahren aus Codeshares mit Air Berlin zurückziehen, meldet "Der Spiegel".


Basically translated as:
Air Berlin will increase its US flight plan in the summer of 2017 from 55 to 78 nonstop lines per week, but it may be on its own on the other side of the Atlantic. American Airlines wants to withdraw from Codeshares with Air Berlin after six years, reports "Der Spiegel".

Es tut mir leid, wenn mein Deutsch nicht gut genug ist. Wenn es deutsche Referenten gibt, fühlen Sie bitte sich frei, die Übersetzung zu korrigieren.

So, this sort-of confirms their reporting. What's interesting, though, is that they still plan on a U.S. expansion.
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sun Oct 23, 2016 12:12 am

Star Alliance has all the Lufthansa owned airlines: Swiss, Austrian, Lufthansa, & SN Brussels plus SAS and LOT Polish. IF IAG merged with SAS would the EU competition authorities have a beef since LH owns four airlines on countries which are all in Central Europe ? Merging SAS in LH seems like one airline too many into the LH Group. . The European airlines are still not finished merging.
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Sun Oct 23, 2016 2:02 am

Loss of AB would hurt. I disagree with Raylee67, AB has filled a role in OW's network. Just try flying from Northern Europe to many of Central Europe's secondary cities.

Also, from a consumer point of view having LH control far too much in Central Europe would be a bad thing. I really hope AB can continue or that replacement competitors can be found!
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 12:58 am

I don't see Air Berlin making all that dramatic a difference to oneworld one way or the other.

Sure, Air Berlin is (was) a relatively large airline and sure, it's based in the country with the largest economy in Europe. But Air Berlin has been in a precarious financial state for years now, and it really adds very little in terms of meaningful network value to the broader alliance - a very large portion of Air Berlin's capacity is either (a) oriented very heavily towards leisure-centric Germany O&D, and/or (b) scheduled suboptimally to be particularly valuable for connections with other oneworld airlines. Ironically, the connectivity with AA at U.S. hubs was probably the single largest point of network connectivity that Air Berlin offered within the alliance.

Perhaps if the BER airport situation wasn't such a mess, the combination of BER and DUS could be (could have been) a more strategically useful means for oneworld to access central and eastern Europe. But, alas, I don't think that's going to happen any time soon. Realistically, oneworld missed out on their last, best shot at have a strong, viable presence in central and eastern Europe when BA let Swiss slip away. At this point, that part of the world is pretty much the sovereign terrain of Lufthansa and Star, with a little SkyTeam on the side.
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 1:11 am

mhkansan wrote:
Germany needs a second network carrier and Oneworld needs AirBerlin. Its crazy to me that they cannot work out their issues there. Germany is a huge, wealthy market with a high demand for air travel.


IMHO, if that were the case we would be discussing IAG investing in AB, not LH investing in AB. IAG is well placed financially and operationally to take AB in, reform it and make it a viable competitor to the LH Group. It hasn't done that, nor indeed shown any interest in doing that, and I think this is telling...
 
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NYCRuss
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 3:02 am

commavia wrote:
Realistically, oneworld missed out on their last, best shot at have a strong, viable presence in central and eastern Europe when BA let Swiss slip away. At this point, that part of the world is pretty much the sovereign terrain of Lufthansa and Star, with a little SkyTeam on the side.


There may be one more chance for OW, short of starting a new airline. If the Poland is willing to sell LO, and IAG wants to buy it, I believe that OW would be in a much better position in central and eastern Europe than they are with AB. That would also take a little of *A's strength and make things less unbalanced.
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 3:22 am

DiscoverCSG wrote:
raylee67 wrote:
With or without AB, OW's hole in the middle of Europe exists. AB is not really adding any value to OW. It has always been primarily a leisure airline. It might have wanted to get out of that image but apparently it was not successful. It's not providing any meaningful connectivity to intercontinental OW flights coming into Germany, let alone Europe as a whole. The hole in the middle of Europe doesn't look destructive for OW. For passengers coming across from North America, LHR and DUB are ideally located and can provide coverage to connect to much of Europe. For those coming from South America, MAD is again located ideally to connect to all of Europe. As long as IB/BA/EI can cover most of the European destinations via LHR/DUB/MAD, OW secures its place in trans-Atlantic market.

Coming from the east is where the gap is. HEL is the only location providing meaningful connectivity for OW passengers coming from the east of Europe. Finnair is going alone on that with some participation from JAL. CX and QF are not jumping on that. QF is not interested as it has its EK partnership. CX is more interested in providing one-stop connectivity via HKG and just fly the 12+ hr flights from HKG to the middle of Europe, bypassing any entry connection hubs within Europe. All things considered, OW will not be impacted in any way if AB is gone.


This is an intelligent and cogent analysis... except that it (along with multiple other posts) completely ignores the presence of QR and its DOH hub, which funnels lots of traffic from the Middle East, Africa, the Indian Subcontinent, Southeast and East Asia, and Down Under to cities all over Europe, including the connecting hubs at MAD, LHR, and HEL.


..and to add to both - for the lower yielding parts of the market - expand IAG's VY into Germany...
 
r2rho
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 9:05 am

AB doesn't really add much to OW, nor has OW ever really cared about AB. The AB network model doesn't really help OW fill its central Europe gap at all, and OW has never been keen on helping AB grow out of its zone. If AB leaves,

Furthermore, the only interest in filling the central Europe "gap" is for intra-EU flights. For intercontinental flights, LHR, DUB, MAD and HEL have it covered. And intra-EU flights are a fare bloodbath and a race to the bottom. Thus, VY is IMO currently the only means for OW to enter that market - if it really wants to.

LOT is definitely an interesting possibility, and would do much better outside Star (where it is too much of a LH satellite airline).
 
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hispanola
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 12:25 pm

I can only think of one Central-European carrier that doesn't belong to an alliance. This is extremely unlikely, but perhaps the Thomas Cook Group could join One World. The only reason I say this is because Condor and Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium are the only Central-European, sizeable airlines that don't belong to an alliance. It could only really work to vacation destinations which is a massive drawback.

If OneWorld want an influential partner in this region, they can either court LOT or try and expand Vueling into Germany.
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winginit
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 12:56 pm

AirlineCritic wrote:
Loss of AB would hurt. I disagree with Raylee67, AB has filled a role in OW's network. Just try flying from Northern Europe to many of Central Europe's secondary cities.


I'm sorry but what cities of any relevance are uniquely served by AB within the alliance? A quick check of the schedule shows thirty unique European destinations total served by AB. Most aren't even worth mentioning, and many that are aren't positioned to connect well from transatlantic service. Pair that in with the difference in connecting and customer experience and I'm quite sure that most of the oneworld alliance members would prefer an interline connection to LH over FRA versus some multi-connect jaunt through TXL or DUS anyway.

AB's exit from oneworld, were it to come about, won't be much different from Malev's exit: hardly felt.
 
oldannyboy
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 2:14 pm

stlgph wrote:
The failure of American & Air Berlin to make Dusseldorf/Chicago work is rather telling of the Air Berlin value to OneWorld..


..clearly.

I don't think the world will be a much sadder place the day AB goes. And IAG will manage to survive. One does have to wonder what benefit AB ever brought to the alliance... its awkward market positioning never really helped what was essentially a basket case from the onset.
 
commavia
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 2:44 pm

winginit wrote:
I'm sorry but what cities of any relevance are uniquely served by AB within the alliance? A quick check of the schedule shows thirty unique European destinations total served by AB. Most aren't even worth mentioning, and many that are aren't positioned to connect well from transatlantic service. Pair that in with the difference in connecting and customer experience and I'm quite sure that most of the oneworld alliance members would prefer an interline connection to LH over FRA versus some multi-connect jaunt through TXL or DUS anyway.

AB's exit from oneworld, were it to come about, won't be much different from Malev's exit: hardly felt.


This - exactly this. The bottom line, again, is that Air Berlin has little meaningful relevance to most of its oneworld partners, and it's network is of little strategic value to the alliance in terms of access and connectivity.
 
azz767
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 2:50 pm

If I was OW id be trying to get wizzair on board for their exposure into eastern europe, an area where OW has not been great in. Also it would give them in my view a chance to merge both locos into one with vueling and wizz, getting rid of a brand with a shocking reputation and really poor quality service, but keeping their route network and aircraft all be it with a lick of pink and purple paint
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 6:47 pm

azz767 wrote:
If I was OW id be trying to get wizzair on board for their exposure into eastern europe, an area where OW has not been great in. Also it would give them in my view a chance to merge both locos into one with vueling and wizz, getting rid of a brand with a shocking reputation and really poor quality service, but keeping their route network and aircraft all be it with a lick of pink and purple paint


Other than a fantasy where exactly does Wizz hinge and provide the feed into the larger IAG/OW network ?

Just like AB they don't and can't !
 
LX138
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 9:37 pm

My view is that the alliance game globally has completely stalled. There has been little mention of recent movement of airlines in or out of any of the big 3 alliances and cross-alliance and hybrid/lo-co partnerships are instead now forming. What this means is AB's inclusion in or out of Oneworld is of little relevance. They have mostly been a leisure airline trying to get into more of a network carrier and OW was and continues to be the way for them to help that happen - if they stick to their current strategy, which I don't think will prevail. What EY can do is unknown but I don't think AB has a long term future with either OW, or... EY.

If anything, AB could drop all partnerships and refocus as a value carrier within west/central Europe again. That was their original specialty. I cannot see their long-haul appealing to the customers that have the legacy competitors to choose from in the long term either and you could debate thats been proven in the situation they find themselves in today.
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ua900
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Mon Oct 24, 2016 11:54 pm

winginit wrote:
AirlineCritic wrote:
Loss of AB would hurt. I disagree with Raylee67, AB has filled a role in OW's network. Just try flying from Northern Europe to many of Central Europe's secondary cities.


I'm sorry but what cities of any relevance are uniquely served by AB within the alliance? A quick check of the schedule shows thirty unique European destinations total served by AB. Most aren't even worth mentioning, and many that are aren't positioned to connect well from transatlantic service. Pair that in with the difference in connecting and customer experience and I'm quite sure that most of the oneworld alliance members would prefer an interline connection to LH over FRA versus some multi-connect jaunt through TXL or DUS anyway.

AB's exit from oneworld, were it to come about, won't be much different from Malev's exit: hardly felt.


Define relevance, if I live in an affected city and fly within an alliance a lot, *A will look pretty darn good to me now. If someone in the U.S. would cut off 30 secondary cities, I bet you'd see one of the US3's express carriers jump in. This is no different, LH Group will pick up the slack and make AB short haul part of EW flying. The lease agreement for half of their fleet speaks volumes, that's virtually all future EW flying, getting past stubborn LH people in one clean go, connecting pax to LH hubs and the upcoming EW hubs in DUS and TXL, exactly where AB is strongest today. Perfect match, and just a switch of uniforms for today's AB flying staff, except for TuiFly staff. TXL HQ office staff, not so much, unless there's room at EW HQ in DUS for them and they want to move to DUS.

LX138 wrote:
My view is that the alliance game globally has completely stalled. There has been little mention of recent movement of airlines in or out of any of the big 3 alliances and cross-alliance and hybrid/lo-co partnerships are instead now forming. What this means is AB's inclusion in or out of Oneworld is of little relevance. They have mostly been a leisure airline trying to get into more of a network carrier and OW was and continues to be the way for them to help that happen - if they stick to their current strategy, which I don't think will prevail. What EY can do is unknown but I don't think AB has a long term future with either OW, or... EY.

If anything, AB could drop all partnerships and refocus as a value carrier within west/central Europe again. That was their original specialty. I cannot see their long-haul appealing to the customers that have the legacy competitors to choose from in the long term either and you could debate thats been proven in the situation they find themselves in today.


AB is out of money and out of time to refocus. They tried a mix of things and they failed badly. All that's left to do is to restart the bidding process and see if EY can recuperate of the millions it sunk into AB. What additional ground alliances haven't managed to cover by now will go to outfits like Jump or EW, and that includes long haul leisure / less business centric than what the three major alliances are used to, plus increasing coverage of short and medium haul through outfits like VY or EW, whose current iterations are primarily a response to FR / U2 short haul and WW / DY long haul.

AB doesn't have a long term future with EY because even EY won't back them up indefinitely without the prospect of taking them over, and their chances of that sort of step are much better with AZ or JU. And as others have said, IAG could have taken them but doesn't want to, maybe they still remember their DBA foray into the German market, much like LH remembers that LH Italy was a bad idea.
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Wed Oct 26, 2016 7:30 am

winginit wrote:
I'm sorry but what cities of any relevance are uniquely served by AB within the alliance? A quick check of the schedule shows thirty unique European destinations total served by AB. Most aren't even worth mentioning, and many that are aren't positioned to connect well from transatlantic service. Pair that in with the difference in connecting and customer experience and I'm quite sure that most of the oneworld alliance members would prefer an interline connection to LH over FRA versus some multi-connect jaunt through TXL or DUS anyway.

AB's exit from oneworld, were it to come about, won't be much different from Malev's exit: hardly felt.


Well. I don't have a list of cities to give you. And obviously the list wouldn't include cities that you would perhaps consider relevant -- the likelihood of OW missing places like London or Paris is obviously nil.

However, just from a personal experience, I'm based near Helsinki, Finland, and travel at least weekly somewhere. A sizeable fraction of my flights in Europe have been AB flights, because they had the connection to some of the smaller cities that AY did not have. And I'd waste a day by going to London. And... I'm not really sure what other options I have. Maybe Madrid, but that's another wasted day.

Maybe I'm an exception, but at least for this oneworlder, AB mattered.
 
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Re: Pondering Oneworld without Air Berlin

Wed Oct 26, 2016 8:18 am

I wouldn't be surprised seeing Vueling to fill the gap AB will leave behind and launch a full attack on Eurowings. Whilst Eurowings may transfer their Long Haul flights from CGN to DUS instead.

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