727LOVER
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Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 4:54 pm

There's definitely a population base within a 30-mile radius. The airport to the north is delay-prone. Airport is NOT congested. Quick TSA lines. AFAiK, free parking...could be wrong.

$100 million start-up cash
4 aircraft


First routes:

BOS
MDW
MCO/SFB

Could it work?
Last edited by 727LOVER on Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope." - Martin Luther King, Jr.
 
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yowza
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 4:57 pm

Impossible to say with this little detail...
 
727LOVER
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:03 pm

yowza wrote:
Impossible to say with this little detail...




What other details would you like?

KEEP IN MIND:
I'm not a real airline CEO...just an armchair one I play on a.net.
"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope." - Martin Luther King, Jr.
 
flight152
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:12 pm

[photoid][/photoid]
727LOVER wrote:
yowza wrote:
Impossible to say with this little detail...




What other details would you like?

KEEP IN MIND:
I'm not a real airline CEO...just an armchair one I play on a.net.

Wow. You're not?? Totally shocking.
 
klakzky123
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:18 pm

Wilmington is on the Acela/Northeast Corridor Line (so there's no way you'll compete regionally) and Wilmington is 30 minutes from PHL.

There's a reason why this doesn't exist.
 
jetjeanes
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:18 pm

Mco wouldn't be a good choice if you have just 4 planes, Better off starting commuter flights to Lga bos, mdw and build on those routes first then grow,,
i can see for 80 miles
 
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yowza
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:21 pm

727LOVER wrote:
yowza wrote:
Impossible to say with this little detail...




What other details would you like?

KEEP IN MIND:
I'm not a real airline CEO...just an armchair one I play on a.net.


- 4 aircraft? Presumably a single type? A380's? ATR-42? The type is of huge consequence. It dictates capacity, fuel efficiency, crew costs, airport compatibility etc.
- LCC or conventional bundled carrier?
- What market are you going after? Is that market willing to pay a proximity premium over say PHL?

I did consulting work at a major pharma company there for three weeks and flew into both PHL and EWR to get there. It wasn't super fun doing that but it wasn't bad. How do you compete with PHL/EWR and the truckloads of options they provide to your planned destinations?
Last edited by yowza on Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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PatrickZ80
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:21 pm

As others have said, impossible to say. If it works depends on a lot more than just that.

What type of business model will your airline have? What type of aircraft? Where will you get them (new or second-hand, lease or buy)? Will you offer connections or just single flights? How will you sell your tickets (direct sales, travel agencies, through other airlines, etc) and at what price? What services do you offer for fee and what services do you charge for, and how much? How much do you pay your staff?

If you make all the right decisions, it just might work. Or it might not.
 
drdisque
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:31 pm

You'd want to focus on PHL routes that are still legacy dominated.

You'd want used low-cost equipment (I recommend used A320's in a two class configuration similar to that used by AirTran - basically copy AirTran's soft product).

The other option, see if you can get a deal on some CRJ-1000's and fit those with a 2 class arrangement, that way they're new, you have fewer seats to fill, and you have lower CASM than the E-190.

Here's what I'd do (this would work best with the CRJ-1000 option)
ILG-BOS/MDW/CLT/RDU/CLE/CVG/IND possibly ATL/MSY/JAX/MSP/YYZ/DTW/STL/DFW/BDL if things go well
Offer connections - NO POINT TO POINT
Simple $25 bag fee
free carry-ons, free seat assignment, pay extra for bulkhead and exit row
Outsource all ground ops
partner for contractor-operated maintenance facility at ILG
 
stlgph
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:33 pm

Better stick to Airport Madness. At the end of the day, it'll be more fulfilling.
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jnev3289
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:52 pm

Maybe, but I wouldn't bet on it. I lived in Philadelphia for years and I think it would have to be a steep discount for me to drive down there.
 
loisencroach
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:01 pm

I always thought G4 2x weekly to SFB would work from ILG but I guess G4 disagrees. I flew ILG-MDW when F9 was doing it and it was a nice little airport.
 
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adamblang
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:03 pm

I assume Frontier abandoning their Wilmington hub means no, it wouldn't.
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zrb2
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:04 pm

I flew Shuttle America several years ago from ILG to BUF. They had a bunch of flights out of there at one point.
 
727LOVER
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:20 pm

adamblang wrote:
I assume Frontier abandoning their Wilmington hub means no, it wouldn't.


What H U B did F9 have?
"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope." - Martin Luther King, Jr.
 
f16arm
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:39 pm

One weekend a month and two (cough, cough 45, 90, 120 days) weeks a year supports my habbit
 
airbazar
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:53 pm

klakzky123 wrote:
Wilmington is on the Acela/Northeast Corridor Line (so there's no way you'll compete regionally) and Wilmington is 30 minutes from PHL.

On the flip side, DE has no taxes right? Isn't that the big advantage that the likes of EK and QR have?
 
Jshank83
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:07 pm

727LOVER wrote:
yowza wrote:
Impossible to say with this little detail...




What other details would you like?

KEEP IN MIND:
I'm not a real airline CEO...just an armchair one I play on a.net.


Yet...

until this thread tells you everything you need to know.... haha
 
StrandedAtMKG
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:08 pm

Given that Frontier tried exactly this and then pulled it down about as quickly as they put it up, I'm gonna go with "no."
 
AAvgeek744
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 8:19 pm

Simple. Not a prayers chance.
 
peterj324
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:58 pm

I don't think there will be a new carrier based in Wilmington but I do believe they will receive commercial service again sometime in the near future. My money is on Allegiant to SFB/PIE/PGD. Other possibilities include Frontier or United Express to ORD and Spirit to FLL.

More unlikely routes include Delta Connection to ATL, Via Air to CLT and Elite Airways to somewhere like MLB or TLH or VRB.
 
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bdlflyer
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:17 pm

If I am not mistaken S5 [Shuttle America] back in its early days [1999/200] used either Trenton [TTN] or [ILG] Wilmington as a hub for its Dash 8-300 aircraft, which of the two airports I can't recall but it did have a nice operation at one of them.
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jaybird
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:00 pm

YEARS ago United flew 737s into ILG .. and advertised that they were the only airline to fly to all 50 states ..
 
jlbmedia
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:23 pm

Didn't Sky Bus fly into ILG for a few days?
JLB54061
 
jetero
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:27 pm

jlbmedia wrote:
Didn't Sky Bus fly into ILG for a few days?


Delta did within the past decade
 
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LAX772LR
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:32 pm

Airlines with billions at their disposal and politicians in their pocket, don't see a market to serve there.

Without significant subsidy, it seems like this would be a tough business case to make. Of course, that's a very simplistic take, but still.
I myself, suspect a more prosaic motive... ~Thranduil
 
FlyingSicilian
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 1:28 am

Frontier makes Trenton work pulling from the northside better than they did pulling from south at ILG. I would concur with something like Allegiant trying it again with subsidies. Signage is still on the highways ;-)
“Without seeing Sicily it is impossible to understand Italy.Sicily is the key of everything.”-Goethe "Journey to Italy"
 
WPvsMW
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 2:09 am

ILG has inadequate catchment to support scheduled service, however much I would love to see it, given I have a client in Newark DL and tire of the Byzantine PHL. Southside has PHL in its backyard, and Marylanders' inertia to go to BWI would be difficult to overcome, leaving .... not much.

The only hope ILG has would be to replace PHL when the PHL terminals, road network, and SEPTA line were razed and rebuilt.
 
727LOVER
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 3:01 am

adamblang wrote:
I assume Frontier abandoning their Wilmington hub means no, it wouldn't.


I wouldn't exactly call that a hub....and AFAIK, they were still serving PHL


If they were serving PHL, thats not going to help ILM
"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope." - Martin Luther King, Jr.
 
loisencroach
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 4:14 am

jlbmedia wrote:
Didn't Sky Bus fly into ILG for a few days?


About a month according to this article:

http://www.delawareonline.com/story/mon ... /27780943/
 
AAvgeek744
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 6:23 am

jaybird wrote:
YEARS ago United flew 737s into ILG .. and advertised that they were the only airline to fly to all 50 states ..


And we all see what a rousing success was. Granted, there were no RJ's back then, but the serving all 50 states was a gimmick. As posted by others, ILG may get a few RJ flights, but likely nothing more.
 
cha747
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 8:02 am

Frontier, Delta, United, Skybus, and Shuttle America have all tried it since I've lived on and off in the area. USAir (at the time) ran contract flights (that were bookable) to various destinations but as the contracts lapsed so did service. Frontier had a go at it. It is a great little airport but probably cannot handle more than a few flights a day. Unless the lux and lavishness of PHL or the LCC affordability of BWI can be overcome, I'm afraid that there is little hope of commercial flights. Legacy carriers offering mainline service to large hubs (ORD, DFW, IAH) may work but with PHL and BWI so close by, why would anybody make the investment?

Now a Chattanooga, TN based airline is another animal...
You land a million planes safely, then you have one little mid-air and you never hear the end of it - Pushing Tin
 
drdisque
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 2:50 pm

StrandedAtMKG wrote:
Given that Frontier tried exactly this and then pulled it down about as quickly as they put it up, I'm gonna go with "no."


You can't completely compare the Frontier situation. First of all, when Frontier did it it was a much more challenged environment and they were a "new" ULCC.

Secondly, they only went to ILG to serve routes that the runway length at TTN didn't allow them to serve and then added some random additional routes (some of which were redundant to their TTN routes).

They never promoted ILG the way they promoted TTN and they never built a critical mass at TTN. Basically, they just realized that they didn't have enough need for routes only operable from ILG to justify the split operation. Later they re-opened PHL, making the point moot.

For an airline with no presence at TTN or PHL, the value proposition of "next best available asset" becomes very different.

You could make a very valid argument that, assuming you could find the space, launching a small LCC based at a major mid-atlantic airport such as PHL, BWI, or IAD, assuming there was available space, has a better chance of survival than launching one at ILG.
 
Blankbarcode
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 3:09 pm

I'm from the Rehoboth Beach area in DE, and as much as I'd love a commercial operation here, it's kind of moot. We have SBY just >1 hour south of us to connect to most of the important hubs, and the hub PHL just 2.5 hours north of us. ILG is so close to Philly anyway, for someone like me it'd only really shave about 0.5 hours off of the commute.

The only thing I think ILG could really offer is a better access to LCCs, but even then I'm sure Frontier would have stayed if there was money to win.

I actually live right next to KGED, and it's a charming little airport with a 737 maintenance facility, so the runway is relatively long enough and there is space to grow. With their name change to Delaware Coastal, the secret armchair CEO in me dreams of starting a small airline out of KGED to suck up traffic from the malnourished SBY and bring it up here, as well as have tourist beach traffic for the summer... one can only dream though!
 
AAvgeek744
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 6:53 pm

cha747 wrote:
Frontier, Delta, United, Skybus, and Shuttle America have all tried it since I've lived on and off in the area. USAir (at the time) ran contract flights (that were bookable) to various destinations but as the contracts lapsed so did service. Frontier had a go at it. It is a great little airport but probably cannot handle more than a few flights a day. Unless the lux and lavishness of PHL or the LCC affordability of BWI can be overcome, I'm afraid that there is little hope of commercial flights. Legacy carriers offering mainline service to large hubs (ORD, DFW, IAH) may work but with PHL and BWI so close by, why would anybody make the investment?

Now a Chattanooga, TN based airline is another animal...


Ruby Falls Airways
 
phluser
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 7:29 pm

drdisque wrote:
You'd want to focus on PHL routes that are still legacy dominated.

You'd want used low-cost equipment (I recommend used A320's in a two class configuration similar to that used by AirTran - basically copy AirTran's soft product).

The other option, see if you can get a deal on some CRJ-1000's and fit those with a 2 class arrangement, that way they're new, you have fewer seats to fill, and you have lower CASM than the E-190.

Here's what I'd do (this would work best with the CRJ-1000 option)
ILG-BOS/MDW/CLT/RDU/CLE/CVG/IND possibly ATL/MSY/JAX/MSP/YYZ/DTW/STL/DFW/BDL if things go well
Offer connections - NO POINT TO POINT
Simple $25 bag fee
free carry-ons, free seat assignment, pay extra for bulkhead and exit row
Outsource all ground ops
partner for contractor-operated maintenance facility at ILG


The problem with a proposed ILG-BOS is very few (from the Delaware Valley) will want drive south one hour to fly back up north, on such a short flight. From the Baltimore region, the highway tolls to Delaware are high and BWI has great service to BOS already. In reality, TTN-BOS service is a better candidate, given the demographics of Central NJ and Bucks County, but it doesn't fit Frontier's model and Frontier anyways didn't elect to service BOS.

Some of the other challenges: The New Castle area around ILG is a complete ghetto, which gives a bad perception of the market and airport experience. It's also a very primitive airport with few amenities (like rental car choices that PHL has now). PHL is south of Center City resulting in PHL closer to the DE border which hurts ILG from getting service. Really, PHL is well situated and central in the Delaware Valley that it makes alternate airports harder to compete. If one wants alternate airport, there is EWR and BWI.

Within South Jersey, ACY is popular and ACY can accomodate more service. ACY has challenges as well, like fewer rental car options (compared to PHL), horrible terminal food options, but at least they exist. NJ Transit also doesn't directly reach ACY, but goes to Absecon, where one needs a Lyft or Uber, although jitney service works for pax coming out of the airport going to the end of the NJT line. It's still not as ideal like PHL that has a direct Septa line. Its too far from the western suburbs of Philly (like King of Prussia), but it seems to pull customers that PHL does not; I see the large orthodox Jewish population who most likely comes from Ocean County. I'd like to see a carrier try out ACY-CLT/RDU/CLE, maybe PVD or BOS, and ATL year-round (Spirit flies a little over half of the year, but it's flights to ATL are generally full). I don't know if Chicago or more midwest (beyond CLE) would do well, given that NJ likely has weaker ties to those markets than the Southeast, and the Winter months there are colder suppressing demand to those places.
 
amdiesen
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 11:23 pm

Respecting the author's original theme and the time that has transpired for input.

Would Wilmington's airport as a MRO focused facility work?

It would take a co-ordinated effort between governments and business leaders.
positives
- location
- comparatively inexpensive labor pool
- taxes and land costs are comparatively attractive.

New Castle and Wilmington would be opportunistic to commission a study that would include adapting the curriculum at the local tech colleges to train talent.

Chrysler left Newark, Dupont is undergoing changes
rail service crosses one of the airport's boundaries, port service is close
...
 
jmc1975
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Re: Would a Wilmington, DE-based airline work?

Fri Aug 18, 2017 5:16 am

Would it be called DelawAIR?
.......

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