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BAWLGW
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How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 3:18 pm

How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used? I came to thinking about airlines who operate out of two different countries but fly to the same city? For instance, BA flies to JFK from both London and Paris (admittedly Openskies operates the ORY flights!), But would it be more cost effective to have BA metal flying LHR-JFK-ORY-JFK-LHR? And get rid of the whole Openskies Subsidiary all together and just operate the flights out of LHR with a W pattern stopping off at ORY?

Love Openskies, but surely operating W Patterns would be more cost effective, rather than having a whole base of crew, office staff etc!?!?
 
belfordrocks
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 3:26 pm

The market needs of JFK-LHR are very different to OpenSkies' JFK-ORY

To answer your question, ZRH-JFK-GVA-JFK-ZRH on LX also comes to mind.
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Cubsrule
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 3:36 pm

Many DL flights from outstations to CDG and AMS utilize a W pattern for the crew and/or the aircraft.
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rutankrd
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 4:32 pm

W pattern operations are very common among European Tour and Flexible fare type carriers.

Virgin Atlantic routinely rotate aircraft over Atlanta and Orlando between their London and Manchester operational stations

American and United also routinely rotate aircraft and crews over LHR.

Its rather more common than you might expect, but was even more common in the 70s through to the 90s before consolidation and the development of Long Haul Hub and Spoke in Europe.

BA however are probably the worst example to quote since they "currently" operate separate long haul fleets and have no secondary city services.

Openskys may be a BA brand but they are an independently operating and reporting subsidiary.
 
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Rajahdhani
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 4:37 pm

AA uses it's 77W on W-Shaped runs often.

Of note, is the -HKG runs. DFW-HKG-LAX-HKG-DFW.

When AA was first opened the DFW-HKG route, it meant that the 77W sat for quite some time, at HKG, awaiting the return leg. The addition of the HKG-LAX-HGK run fit smartly into the time tables (really well timed to suite the needs of LAX O/D, and not competing as heavily with CX due to the timing of the flight), and upped the utilization of the aircraft. 'Fitting' both flights into each other, keeps the 77W flying longer sectors, and more often. Win.
 
cedarjet
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 4:42 pm

When Air France had LHR transatlantic flights about eight or ten years ago, to LAX (BA Open Skies is the mirror image of the same liberalisation of rights), the 777-228ER routed CDG-LAX-LHR-LAX-CDG.
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CONTACREW
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 5:51 pm

Here at UA we have several FA pairings that are W type routings specifically sub CO

sub CO NTA crews do the following W type pairings:

EWR-LHR-IAD-LHR-EWR 75B
EWR-PVG 77Y PVG-LAX-PVG 78Z PVG-EWR 77Y
EWR-NRT 77Y NRT-DEN-NRT 78V NRT-EWR 77Y
EWR-BRU-IAD-BRU-EWR 76P.

The summer seasonal ORD-DUB/EDI/SNN flights are generally flown out of sub CO NTA
EWR-DUB-ORD-DUB-EWR 75B
EWR-EDI-ORD-EDI-EWR 75B
EWR-SNN-ORD-SNN-EWR 75B
ORD-DUB this year will be operated with a 763 so sub UA ORD crews will work that trip.

Foreign language speakers on the sub CO side have several W type pairings one example is an NLS Spanish speaker pairing operating EWR-SJU-ORD-SJU-EWR.
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 5:59 pm

Lufthansa has one W-shaped route because it still maintains one long-haul destination out of Dusseldorf under mainline operations. The pattern is MUC-EWR-DUS-EWR-MUC (LH412/409/408/413).

As for Air France's LHR-LAX experiment, if it hadn't ended before, the acquisition of 49 percent of Virgin Atlantic by Delta would have, as Delta can now put passengers on VS flights.
 
factsonly
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 6:04 pm

Cubsrule wrote:
Many DL flights from outstations to CDG and AMS utilize a W pattern for the crew and/or the aircraft.


We might call some of the these DL patterns even 'Double WW" patterns;

A333 - N801NW operated this week:

- DL74 Atlanta (ATL) Amsterdam (AMS)
- DL163 Amsterdam (AMS) Minneapolis (MSP)
- DL162 Minneapolis (MSP) Amsterdam (AMS)
- DL143 Amsterdam (AMS) Seattle (SEA)
- DL142 Seattle (SEA) Amsterdam (AMS)
- DL161 Amsterdam (AMS) Atlanta (ATL)

A333 - N807NW operated

- DL137 Amsterdam (AMS) Detroit (DTW)
- DL134 Detroit (DTW) Amsterdam (AMS)
- DL143 Amsterdam (AMS) Seattle (SEA)
- DL142 Seattle (SEA) Amsterdam (AMS)
- DL125 Amsterdam (AMS) Boston (BOS)
- DL126 Boston (BOS) Amsterdam (AMS)
- DL161 Amsterdam (AMS) Minneapolis (MSP)
- DL140 Minneapolis (MSP) Paris (CDG)
- DL405 Paris (CDG) New York (JFK)
- DL418 New York (JFK) Milan (MXP)
- DL419 Milan (MXP) New York (JFK)
 
Andy33
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 6:09 pm

cedarjet wrote:
When Air France had LHR transatlantic flights about eight or ten years ago, to LAX (BA Open Skies is the mirror image of the same liberalisation of rights), the 777-228ER routed CDG-LAX-LHR-LAX-CDG.


Certainly came about because of the European Common Aviation Market, but AF's flights out of LHR were all operated on the airline's main French AOC.
The mirror doesn't quite work, if it did Openskies would use a British AOC, but it has its own French AOC instead.
 
sevenair
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 7:07 pm

easyJet use UK based aircraft to operate Geneva ski flights from non bases in the UK.

For example, BRS-GVA-LBA-GVA-BRS, NCL-GVA-BOH-GVA-NCL and LTN-GVA-BHX-GVA-LTN.
 
luftaom
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 7:07 pm

Back in the early 2000s when KLM and Alitalia were very close a KLM 744 operated a AMS-SIN-SYD-SIN-MXP-SIN-SYD-SIN-AMS pattern.
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zkncj
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 7:42 pm

Its pretty common with NZ's A320s.

examples
AKL-MEL-ZQN-MEL-AKL
CHC-MEL-AKL-MEL-CHC
 
AAMDanny
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 8:22 pm

It's popular with charter airlines in the UK, for example, when I worked for a charter airline... NWI was not a base for us but once a week an aircraft would go LGW-AYT-NWI-AYT-LGW, (at the time we had a few W patterns in and out of NWI this is just one example)

How it worked was 1 crew would operate the first 2 segments (LGW-AYT-NWI) and the day before a crew would go via taxi to NWI, night stop then take over the flight from the first crew in NWI. And operate NWI-AYT-LGW. The first crew would then taxi home back to base.

Some of the benefits of W patterns allows airlines to operate flights out of airports that has no crew/aircraft based there, and reduces the need to 'position' of 'ferry' aircraft around which wastes crew hours, fuel, and increases the wear and tear on the aircraft.

Other benefits of doing 'W' patterns, let's imagine at a make believe airline, BHX was an all B757 base, and all crew there are B757 trained only and there wasn't a strong enough market to fill a B757 on, for example, BHX-JTR (just hypothetical!) but the airline had A320's based at LGW and could easily fill a A320 from LGW and BHX to JTR, they could W pattern the A320 with BHX, routing LGW-JTR-BHX-JTR-LGW. The same principle could be used with larger airlines for bases that have smaller aircraft but has routes that demand extra capacity. Of course the flight could double drop at route BHX-LGW-JTR-LGW-BHX, but that might put potential customers off as the flight is not non-stop.

Sometimes a engineer would come along so there is a engineer on site in a airport such as NWI should anything go wrong with the aircraft. Sometimes they was referred to as 'flying spanners!'
 
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aemoreira1981
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 8:50 pm

Other W routes:

American Airlines: USA hub-LHR-RDU-LHR-USA hub
Delta: USA hub-CDG-EWR or RDU-CDG-USA hub or USA hub-CDG or AMS-EWR-CDG or AMS-USA hub
 
seven3seven
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 9:12 pm

I don't think many of you understand what a W pattern really is
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flyingfool
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 10:14 pm

luftaom wrote:
Back in the early 2000s when KLM and Alitalia were very close a KLM 744 operated a AMS-SIN-SYD-SIN-MXP-SIN-SYD-SIN-AMS pattern.



I was also thinking about this one, 96 hours away from homebase...
 
dfwjim1
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 10:47 pm

Why are these routes referred to as "W"?
 
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 10:48 pm

Why are these routes referred to as "W"?
 
rutankrd
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 10:56 pm

A true W pattern would be Base to remote to third pair back to remote and finally back to base with same crew in a continuous shift

For instance as example might be Manchester - Hanover - Milan - Hanover - Manchester with Flybe.
 
Cubsrule
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sat Jan 28, 2017 11:06 pm

rutankrd wrote:
A true W pattern would be Base to remote to third pair back to remote and finally back to base with same crew in a continuous shift

For instance as example might be Manchester - Hanover - Milan - Hanover - Manchester with Flybe.


Why do overnights make it something other than a W?
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sun Jan 29, 2017 12:51 am

QF do it with the A380's at LAX/LHR since their main A380 base is SYD they operate a W pattern to get to MEL rather than doing domestic sectors.

SYD-DXB-LHR-DXB-MEL-DXB-LHR-DXB-SYD
SYD-LAX-MEL-LAX-SYD

Generally the 744's now that run ex MEL-LAX/HKG do a W pattern from SYD aswell though these flights are 2-3 weekly on 744's. The BNE-LAX 744 does the same on days when a 744 does SYD-LAX generally they swap at LAX which is usually only 1 day a week, more in peak season though.
 
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sun Jan 29, 2017 2:32 am

On a seasonal basis, NZ do AKL-PER-CHC-PER-AKL with the 789.
 
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sun Jan 29, 2017 4:06 am

SAS rotates planes between Oslo and Copenhagen via MIA. Planes land from Oslo and return to Copenhagen or visa-versa, except once a week.

Also Swiss rotates an A330 to Geneva via JFK.
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SJPBR
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sun Jan 29, 2017 12:07 pm

A few years ago when AA was using 77W in most flights to GRU (from JFK, MIA and DFW) they always were in W pattern shifting the ships between the hubs thought GRU.
 
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Sun Jan 29, 2017 12:42 pm

Ryanair uses this in France where they don't have any bases. For instance, they fly domestic LIL-MRS and some BVA routes.

Vueling also uses this thing sometimes, even in airports which are bases. For instance, I flew VY's SCQ-ZRH last year (despite SCQ and - I think also - ZRH being two bases) and it was a BCN-based crew/plane, so it should have done BCN-SCQ-ZRH-SCQ-BCN. Don't ask me why but it is relatively common with VY. I reckon in this case it all comes to schedule and aircraft utilisation in order to optimise the best times for each particular flight.

Also Volotea (that copies everything from VY) does quite a few W flights.
 
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 12:44 am

Westjet used W on YYC-LGW-YEG-LGW-YYC last summer. I believe they also used the same routing for YWG. They may have used YYZ as well for these routes as well.
 
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 2:15 am

rutankrd wrote:
A true W pattern would be Base to remote to third pair back to remote and finally back to base with same crew in a continuous shift

For instance as example might be Manchester - Hanover - Milan - Hanover - Manchester with Flybe.


I think is correct.
A true W pattern is usually short haul, with the whole rotation completed with a single crew.

In many cases airlines use this pattern to have flights during the peak for business markets, then operating middle of the day flights for leisure markets.

examples in the might include MEL-SYD-CNS-SYD-MEL, with timings:

MEL 0700 - 835 SYD 915 - 12.25 CNS 13.00 - 15.55 SYD 16.30 - 18.00 MEL
 
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 2:24 am

6thfreedom wrote:
rutankrd wrote:
A true W pattern would be Base to remote to third pair back to remote and finally back to base with same crew in a continuous shift

For instance as example might be Manchester - Hanover - Milan - Hanover - Manchester with Flybe.


I think is correct.
A true W pattern is usually short haul, with the whole rotation completed with a single crew.

In many cases airlines use this pattern to have flights during the peak for business markets, then operating middle of the day flights for leisure markets.

examples in the might include MEL-SYD-CNS-SYD-MEL, with timings:

MEL 0700 - 835 SYD 915 - 12.25 CNS 13.00 - 15.55 SYD 16.30 - 18.00 MEL


You have repiqued my curiosity. Who is the arbiter of what is and is not a "true W pattern?"
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 4:15 am

I want to know why any of these are called "W" patterns. What does the letter W stand for?

Looking at the shape of a letter W, and drawing out the pattern on a map, it looks more like a V than a W.
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SpoonNZ
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 4:27 am

6thfreedom wrote:

I think is correct.
A true W pattern is usually short haul, with the whole rotation completed with a single crew.

examples in the might include MEL-SYD-CNS-SYD-MEL, with timings:

MEL 0700 - 835 SYD 915 - 12.25 CNS 13.00 - 15.55 SYD 16.30 - 18.00 MEL

Surely that couldn't be completed by a single crew either - 11+ hours of duty?
 
jbflyguy84
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 4:46 am

hOMSaR wrote:
I want to know why any of these are called "W" patterns. What does the letter W stand for?

Looking at the shape of a letter W, and drawing out the pattern on a map, it looks more like a V than a W.


It doesn't stand for anything - its just simply the letter that closest matches the pattern of the flying?

Using your V analogy, then join to V's together and what do you get? The W. You could even call it an M pattern if you like...
 
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hOMSaR
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 5:12 am

jbflyguy84 wrote:
hOMSaR wrote:
I want to know why any of these are called "W" patterns. What does the letter W stand for?

Looking at the shape of a letter W, and drawing out the pattern on a map, it looks more like a V than a W.


It doesn't stand for anything - its just simply the letter that closest matches the pattern of the flying?

Using your V analogy, then join to V's together and what do you get? The W. You could even call it an M pattern if you like...


But why are we joining two Vs together? Almost all of the examples mentioned in this thread are A-B-C-B-A patterns, where A and C would be the edges of the "V" and B, the outstation, is the connection of the two lines. That's a V pattern, just retracing the line back to the origin.

There must be some reason it's called W, but the patterns mentioned in this thread don't look like a W. A W would look like a routing A-B-C-D-E-D-C-B-A.

Yes, I'm being overly nit-picky for no reason.
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jbflyguy84
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 5:47 am

hOMSaR wrote:
jbflyguy84 wrote:
hOMSaR wrote:
I want to know why any of these are called "W" patterns. What does the letter W stand for?

Looking at the shape of a letter W, and drawing out the pattern on a map, it looks more like a V than a W.


It doesn't stand for anything - its just simply the letter that closest matches the pattern of the flying?

Using your V analogy, then join to V's together and what do you get? The W. You could even call it an M pattern if you like...


But why are we joining two Vs together? Almost all of the examples mentioned in this thread are A-B-C-B-A patterns, where A and C would be the edges of the "V" and B, the outstation, is the connection of the two lines. That's a V pattern, just retracing the line back to the origin.

There must be some reason it's called W, but the patterns mentioned in this thread don't look like a W. A W would look like a routing A-B-C-D-E-D-C-B-A.

Yes, I'm being overly nit-picky for no reason.


A-B-C-D-E-D-C-B-A is simply a multi leg journey with a turnaround point at E.

I guess another way to think of it is the hub/base is the first and final leg of the journey and a middle non hub/base station exists in the trip between 2 other destinations that is not part of the original trip.

Using one of the examples above all 5 legs are indpendent of each other as there is a change of direction on the routing and this differs from the idea of a 5th freedom pattern of sectors.

I know the above is rambling a bit, but I am thinking out aloud here - perhaps its the change in the direction that makes it a W?

As you said, you're being picky, so maybe this will never be solved for you :)
 
briguychau
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 6:43 am

AC also uses this "pattern" to rotate aircraft between hubs.
For Summer 2017, these long-haul routes will use a W-pattern (or whatever you want to call it, V-pattern or M-pattern):
YVR-LHR-YUL and YUL-LHR-YVR for the 450-seat 777-300ER
YUL-CDG-YYZ-CDG-YUL also for the 450-seat 777-300ER
YYZ-NRT-YYC-NRT-YYZ and YYZ-LHR-YYC-LHR-YYZ (optionally) for the 787-9
YYZ-FRA-YYC-FRA-YYZ for the 777-200LR
YUL-FRA-YVR-FRA-YUL (optionally) for the 787-8

Airports in the US such as SFO/LAX are frequently used to rotate narrowbodies between hubs.
 
diverted
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 12:00 pm

briguychau wrote:
AC also uses this "pattern" to rotate aircraft between hubs.
For Summer 2017, these long-haul routes will use a W-pattern (or whatever you want to call it, V-pattern or M-pattern):
YVR-LHR-YUL and YUL-LHR-YVR for the 450-seat 777-300ER
YUL-CDG-YYZ-CDG-YUL also for the 450-seat 777-300ER
YYZ-NRT-YYC-NRT-YYZ and YYZ-LHR-YYC-LHR-YYZ (optionally) for the 787-9
YYZ-FRA-YYC-FRA-YYZ for the 777-200LR
YUL-FRA-YVR-FRA-YUL (optionally) for the 787-8

Airports in the US such as SFO/LAX are frequently used to rotate narrowbodies between hubs.


Perhaps someone like Longhauler can chime in, but I believe that's how the T/A YOW flights are routed as well. Believe the 763 operates something like YYZ-LHR-YOW-FRA-YYZ, or YYZ-FRA-YOW-LHR-YYZ.
 
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longhauler
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 2:19 pm

diverted wrote:
Perhaps someone like Longhauler can chime in, but I believe that's how the T/A YOW flights are routed as well. Believe the 763 operates something like YYZ-LHR-YOW-FRA-YYZ, or YYZ-FRA-YOW-LHR-YYZ.

Yes, it also occurs with Atlantic operations by the A330 when flown to/from other than its YUL base.

We are going to see more of this, as the 767 and A330 fleets reduce to their planned future size ... 10 in YYZ and 8 in YUL, respectively.
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 2:23 pm

SpoonNZ wrote:
Surely that couldn't be completed by a single crew either - 11+ hours of duty?

It could in Canada, as domestic crews can work up to a 14 duty day.

Thinks like YYZ-LGA-YUL-LGA-YYZ, or YVR-SFO-YYC-LAX-YVR.
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767333ER
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Tue Jan 31, 2017 4:12 pm

briguychau wrote:
AC also uses this "pattern" to rotate aircraft between hubs.
For Summer 2017, these long-haul routes will use a W-pattern (or whatever you want to call it, V-pattern or M-pattern):
YVR-LHR-YUL and YUL-LHR-YVR for the 450-seat 777-300ER
YUL-CDG-YYZ-CDG-YUL also for the 450-seat 777-300ER
YYZ-NRT-YYC-NRT-YYZ and YYZ-LHR-YYC-LHR-YYZ (optionally) for the 787-9
YYZ-FRA-YYC-FRA-YYZ for the 777-200LR
YUL-FRA-YVR-FRA-YUL (optionally) for the 787-8

Airports in the US such as SFO/LAX are frequently used to rotate narrowbodies between hubs.

YYC-NRT-YYC is one that would not be on this list when it is a 767 as that YYC is the only plane where NRT would get an AC 767 from. In that case they would reposition a 767 to run between YYC-NRT for a few days and then send it back to YYZ and replace it with a new one. They might still do this when it goes 788 in the summer as well.
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6thfreedom
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Re: How widely used is the 'W Pattern' used by Airlines?

Wed Feb 01, 2017 5:41 am

SpoonNZ wrote:
6thfreedom wrote:

I think is correct.
A true W pattern is usually short haul, with the whole rotation completed with a single crew.

examples in the might include MEL-SYD-CNS-SYD-MEL, with timings:

MEL 0700 - 835 SYD 915 - 12.25 CNS 13.00 - 15.55 SYD 16.30 - 18.00 MEL

Surely that couldn't be completed by a single crew either - 11+ hours of duty?


My understanding is that many LCCs have crew times of +12hrs.
JQ does MEL/DPS/MEL and SYD/DRW/SYD with a single crew, so 11 hrs would be possible for domestic sectors:

MEL/DPS/MEL dep/arr MEL 9.15 - 22.10 (12.55 hrs flying)

SYD/DRW/SYD dep/arr SYD = 20.30 - 6.05+1 (9.35 hrs flying)

TT BNE/PER/BNE
19:00 - 05.55 + 1 = 10.55 hrs flying.

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