Fargo
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United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 1:38 am

It is no secret that UA lags behind DL and AA domestically. While UA's international and alliance network is arguably the best of the US3, they are pretty weak on the domestic front outside of their hub markets. They have begun to grow their core interior hubs (ORD, IAH, DEN) to flow more connections and re-optimize their costal hubs (EWR, IAD, etc) to better mach local demand, however, more is needed. So specifically, two questions.

1. When will they begin reducing the number of 50 seaters and add more mainline/larger regional jets, specifically to the aforementioned interior core hubs? I understand there is a scope issue that may be preventing movement on this front, but how can they resolve this and move to start upgauging?

2. How will they address their gap in non-hub markets where they are often in fourth or lower?
 
Scarebus34
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 1:44 am

The company can add more E175 tomorrow. All they have to do is order a NSNB to be flown at mainline. Mr Regional Jet (Scott Kirby) has underestimated the pilots union willingness to hold the line on scope. Until he’s finally convinced he can’t get them to cave, it won’t happen.
 
77H
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 2:27 am

Fargo wrote:
It is no secret that UA lags behind DL and AA domestically. While UA's international and alliance network is arguably the best of the US3, they are pretty weak on the domestic front outside of their hub markets. They have begun to grow their core interior hubs (ORD, IAH, DEN) to flow more connections and re-optimize their costal hubs (EWR, IAD, etc) to better mach local demand, however, more is needed. So specifically, two questions.

1. When will they begin reducing the number of 50 seaters and add more mainline/larger regional jets, specifically to the aforementioned interior core hubs? I understand there is a scope issue that may be preventing movement on this front, but how can they resolve this and move to start upgauging?

2. How will they address their gap in non-hub markets where they are often in fourth or lower?


Well... UA announced the launch of the CR550 (a CR7 limited to 50 seats) and the delivery Of E175SC (E175s limited to 70 seats) to continue to expand within the bounds of the scope clause. Both are larger RJs with premium seats which is a massive improvement in product offering over the CR2 and E145.

Beyond that, UA continues to search for second hand A319/20 aircraft. The 737NG line of aircraft has held on to its value which is why we haven’t seen second hand examples enter the fleet, not that UA hasn’t tried.

Without a new 100 seat mainline aircraft such as the A220-100 or E195 UA will be limited to scope buster RJs and what they can pick up off the second hand market.

Perhaps another strategy UA could employ would be to pick up second hand 77E’s, de-rate them and drop the MTOW for additional hub to hub lift, thereby freeing up narrowbody aircraft for domestic expansion.

77H
 
DiamondFlyer
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 2:34 am

Scarebus34 wrote:
The company can add more E175 tomorrow. All they have to do is order a NSNB to be flown at mainline. Mr Regional Jet (Scott Kirby) has underestimated the pilots union willingness to hold the line on scope. Until he’s finally convinced he can’t get them to cave, it won’t happen.


Not only that, they could add the 175 at mainline too, if they really "needed" the airplanes that badly.
From my cold, dead hands
 
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intotheair
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 3:02 am

Fargo wrote:
1. When will they begin reducing the number of 50 seaters and add more mainline/larger regional jets, specifically to the aforementioned interior core hubs? I understand there is a scope issue that may be preventing movement on this front, but how can they resolve this and move to start upgauging?


I don't think we're going to see much of a change. I think we'll continue to see UA add more big new narrowbodies (739/73-10s) and smaller used ones (319s) while they work with the RJ fleet that they have. The pilots have no incentive to budge on scope, and if UA really wanted a 100-seat mainline narrowbody, they could have already gotten one. If anyone thinks UA is going to buy E175s and fly them at mainline rates, well then, Jeff Smisek might have a bridge in New Jersey to sell you. Or something.

2. How will they address their gap in non-hub markets where they are often in fourth or lower?


UA needs to focus on its seven hubs. Strengthening them will strengthen its standing in non-hub markets. All of UA's hubs have huge demand on their own, and the way the airline is headed, it'll be able to offer people some compelling connections through those hubs too. I doubt we'll see UA launch a route that doesn't touch a hub as long as Scott Kirby is around.

Building up the hubs as much as possible has to be the main priority.
300 319 320 321 332 333 345 346 717 733 734 735 73G 738 739 744 752 753 762 763 772 77W 788 789 CR2 CR7 CR9 Q400 E175 DC10 MD82 MD90
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Fargo
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 3:27 am

intotheair wrote:
Fargo wrote:
1. When will they begin reducing the number of 50 seaters and add more mainline/larger regional jets, specifically to the aforementioned interior core hubs? I understand there is a scope issue that may be preventing movement on this front, but how can they resolve this and move to start upgauging?


I don't think we're going to see much of a change. I think we'll continue to see UA add more big new narrowbodies (739/73-10s) and smaller used ones (319s) while they work with the RJ fleet that they have. The pilots have no incentive to budge on scope, and if UA really wanted a 100-seat mainline narrowbody, they could have already gotten one. If anyone thinks UA is going to buy E175s and fly them at mainline rates, well then, Jeff Smisek might have a bridge in New Jersey to sell you. Or something.

2. How will they address their gap in non-hub markets where they are often in fourth or lower?


UA needs to focus on its seven hubs. Strengthening them will strengthen its standing in non-hub markets. All of UA's hubs have huge demand on their own, and the way the airline is headed, it'll be able to offer people some compelling connections through those hubs too. I doubt we'll see UA launch a route that doesn't touch a hub as long as Scott Kirby is around.

Building up the hubs as much as possible has to be the main priority.


Sooner or later, these stopgap measures (I.e, CR550) aren’t going to work and they’ll need to order more narrowbody. The pilots absolutely shouldn’t give up on the scope, they need to hold the line until UA adds more mainline.

Agree they need to build up hubs, but that’s only half the equation. You can have convenient connections all you want, but if in airports outside of your hubs there is little marketing, small 50 seat planes, no clubs, etc, then there is little incentive to fly UA compared to DL or AA. I am not saying they need to add p2p or anything, I was simply asking how will they grow in non-hubs to be more competitive with AA/DL.
 
Mboyle1988
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 3:38 am

I think they should focus on east west flying through DEN.
 
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intotheair
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 4:40 am

Fargo wrote:
Sooner or later, these stopgap measures (I.e, CR550) aren’t going to work and they’ll need to order more narrowbody. The pilots absolutely shouldn’t give up on the scope, they need to hold the line until UA adds more mainline.

Agree they need to build up hubs, but that’s only half the equation. You can have convenient connections all you want, but if in airports outside of your hubs there is little marketing, small 50 seat planes, no clubs, etc, then there is little incentive to fly UA compared to DL or AA. I am not saying they need to add p2p or anything, I was simply asking how will they grow in non-hubs to be more competitive with AA/DL.


I agree that moves like the CRJ550 are just signs that scope choke is working.

I see what you're saying about the other markets. I know the jump from 76 seats to 120 seats is a lot, but I think there are plenty of small markets that are strong enough to get mainline again. As an example, I'm still a little surprised to see how UA has in the few years been able to go from all RJs in EUG to bringing mainline back – even some 739s to DEN and SFO from time to time! They're also adding LAX, though it's on 76-seaters for now.

I used to be one of those people who believed that UA needed a 100 seater to grow markets, but I don't know if that's the case anymore. There's a lot that can be done by growing the number of frames in the existing mainline fleet types.
300 319 320 321 332 333 345 346 717 733 734 735 73G 738 739 744 752 753 762 763 772 77W 788 789 CR2 CR7 CR9 Q400 E175 DC10 MD82 MD90
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739er
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 5:10 am

Scott Kirby needs to get on board with the realization that scope isn’t going to change his way. Order a 100 seat jet for the mainline and unlock scope potential on the larger RJs at Express....Essentially, do what Delta is doing. After all, UA and DL scope is virtually identical in regard to RJs, but Delta has capitalized on the potential and UA, thanks to Kirby, has not.
 
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kordcj
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 7:09 am

739er wrote:
Scott Kirby needs to get on board with the realization that scope isn’t going to change his way. Order a 100 seat jet for the mainline and unlock scope potential on the larger RJs at Express....Essentially, do what Delta is doing. After all, UA and DL scope is virtually identical in regard to RJs, but Delta has capitalized on the potential and UA, thanks to Kirby, has not.


Is it fair to compare UA to DL when it comes to the economics of a 100 seater aircraft? DL got their 717s at a fire sale price and same can probably be said for the A220. That fire sale pricing puts the price of ownership in a whole different league than buying at list or even 90% list price. I can’t say for certain that United can’t get A220s on the cheap but, I doubt they’ll be getting them at the price DL did.
UA’s fleet utilization is also vastly different as well. I thought I saw somewhere that the avg stagelength for a UA craft was much longer than that of DL. That can also play into cost of ownership.
TL;DR I don’t believe that the blanket statement of do what DL is doing can be so easily applied to UA when it comes to the economics of the 100 seater.
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MIflyer12
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 10:39 am

kordcj wrote:
739er wrote:
Scott Kirby needs to get on board with the realization that scope isn’t going to change his way. Order a 100 seat jet for the mainline and unlock scope potential on the larger RJs at Express....Essentially, do what Delta is doing. After all, UA and DL scope is virtually identical in regard to RJs, but Delta has capitalized on the potential and UA, thanks to Kirby, has not.


Is it fair to compare UA to DL when it comes to the economics of a 100 seater aircraft? DL got their 717s at a fire sale price and same can probably be said for the A220. That fire sale pricing puts the price of ownership in a whole different league than buying at list or even 90% list price.


No, it doesn't. Look at any U.S. carrier's income statement. The big cost items aren't depreciation and amortization, debt service or aircraft leases - they are wages and fuel.
 
739er
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 1:26 pm

kordcj wrote:
739er wrote:
Scott Kirby needs to get on board with the realization that scope isn’t going to change his way. Order a 100 seat jet for the mainline and unlock scope potential on the larger RJs at Express....Essentially, do what Delta is doing. After all, UA and DL scope is virtually identical in regard to RJs, but Delta has capitalized on the potential and UA, thanks to Kirby, has not.


Is it fair to compare UA to DL when it comes to the economics of a 100 seater aircraft? DL got their 717s at a fire sale price and same can probably be said for the A220. That fire sale pricing puts the price of ownership in a whole different league than buying at list or even 90% list price. I can’t say for certain that United can’t get A220s on the cheap but, I doubt they’ll be getting them at the price DL did.
UA’s fleet utilization is also vastly different as well. I thought I saw somewhere that the avg stagelength for a UA craft was much longer than that of DL. That can also play into cost of ownership.
TL;DR I don’t believe that the blanket statement of do what DL is doing can be so easily applied to UA when it comes to the economics of the 100 seater.


I’m pretty sure that if UA ordered 88 EMB-195 E2s tomorrow for mainline it wouldn’t be at even close to 90% of the cost. Not to mention the additional 70ish EMB-175s that would be added at Express by releasing the “scope choke”. This isn’t about economics of the 100 seat jet. It’s about Scott Kirby trying to stick to his failed plan. He’s a one trick pony when it comes to RJs. Always has been through 4 airlines now. And then there’s the CRJ-550?....Wow! I can imagine that Delta’s management laughed at that idiotic move.
 
jayunited
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 2:35 pm

intotheair wrote:
Fargo wrote:
Sooner or later, these stopgap measures (I.e, CR550) aren’t going to work and they’ll need to order more narrowbody. The pilots absolutely shouldn’t give up on the scope, they need to hold the line until UA adds more mainline.

Agree they need to build up hubs, but that’s only half the equation. You can have convenient connections all you want, but if in airports outside of your hubs there is little marketing, small 50 seat planes, no clubs, etc, then there is little incentive to fly UA compared to DL or AA. I am not saying they need to add p2p or anything, I was simply asking how will they grow in non-hubs to be more competitive with AA/DL.


I agree that moves like the CRJ550 are just signs that scope choke is working.

I see what you're saying about the other markets. I know the jump from 76 seats to 120 seats is a lot, but I think there are plenty of small markets that are strong enough to get mainline again. As an example, I'm still a little surprised to see how UA has in the few years been able to go from all RJs in EUG to bringing mainline back – even some 739s to DEN and SFO from time to time! They're also adding LAX, though it's on 76-seaters for now.

I used to be one of those people who believed that UA needed a 100 seater to grow markets, but I don't know if that's the case anymore. There's a lot that can be done by growing the number of frames in the existing mainline fleet types.


Intotheair I think you are exactly correct. If people were to dig up some of my old posts on topic related this thread they would find me advocating for a UA 100 seater because I also at one point in time believed UA needed a 100 seater in order to compete in smaller markets. But as time as gone on my views on it have changed as well. UA has over 140 new narrowbody 737Maxs on order and we have quite a few used A320/19s in the pipline that will be entering the fleet as well and while I don't believe the pilots should give in on scope I also think UA's current strategy is working.

The strategy as I see it and understand it is this as UA takes delivery of newer larger narrowbodies we are upguaging certain routes which in turn frees up a 739ER (same size as MAX9). However the now freed 739ER, replaces a 738, the 738 replaces an A320, the A320 replaces a A319. That now free A319 can now be used to upguaged a 76 seater market which in turn frees up the 76 or 70 seater. That 76, 70 seater aircraft in turn frees up a 50 seater which can then be used to open up a new market to a hub or to increase service on an already existing route into a hub. In just over the past year and a half or two years UA has either introduced or reintroduced mainline flying to many small and mid size cities that either haven't had mainline service or haven't had mainline service in some cases over 10 years. While we are seeing UA use more of the Airbus fleet to upguage flights from stations that have been all RJ for years, there havealso been cases where we've seen UA go from an RJ to a 738 or even a 739ER in less than a year.

Call me crazy but it's starting to look like the pilots may have unknowingly did UA a huge favor by holding firm on scope. In my opinion it really is starting to look like UA does not need a 100 seater aircraft to compete with AA and DL. UA has the least number of narrowbodies all UA needs is more mainline aircraft to free up the smaller 120, 126 seaters and a few used aircraft to complement the existing frames already in the fleet.
 
Fargo
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 10:10 pm

jayunited wrote:
intotheair wrote:
Fargo wrote:
Sooner or later, these stopgap measures (I.e, CR550) aren’t going to work and they’ll need to order more narrowbody. The pilots absolutely shouldn’t give up on the scope, they need to hold the line until UA adds more mainline.

Agree they need to build up hubs, but that’s only half the equation. You can have convenient connections all you want, but if in airports outside of your hubs there is little marketing, small 50 seat planes, no clubs, etc, then there is little incentive to fly UA compared to DL or AA. I am not saying they need to add p2p or anything, I was simply asking how will they grow in non-hubs to be more competitive with AA/DL.


I agree that moves like the CRJ550 are just signs that scope choke is working.

I see what you're saying about the other markets. I know the jump from 76 seats to 120 seats is a lot, but I think there are plenty of small markets that are strong enough to get mainline again. As an example, I'm still a little surprised to see how UA has in the few years been able to go from all RJs in EUG to bringing mainline back – even some 739s to DEN and SFO from time to time! They're also adding LAX, though it's on 76-seaters for now.

I used to be one of those people who believed that UA needed a 100 seater to grow markets, but I don't know if that's the case anymore. There's a lot that can be done by growing the number of frames in the existing mainline fleet types.


Intotheair I think you are exactly correct. If people were to dig up some of my old posts on topic related this thread they would find me advocating for a UA 100 seater because I also at one point in time believed UA needed a 100 seater in order to compete in smaller markets. But as time as gone on my views on it have changed as well. UA has over 140 new narrowbody 737Maxs on order and we have quite a few used A320/19s in the pipline that will be entering the fleet as well and while I don't believe the pilots should give in on scope I also think UA's current strategy is working.

The strategy as I see it and understand it is this as UA takes delivery of newer larger narrowbodies we are upgauging certain routes which in turn frees up a 739ER (same size as MAX9). However the now freed 739ER, replaces a 738, the 738 replaces an A320, the A320 replaces a A319. That now free A319 can now be used to upgauged a 76 seater market which in turn frees up the 76 or 70 seater. That 76, 70 seater aircraft in turn frees up a 50 seater which can then be used to open up a new market to a hub or to increase service on an already existing route into a hub. In just over the past year and a half or two years UA has either introduced or reintroduced mainline flying to many small and mid size cities that either haven't had mainline service or haven't had mainline service in some cases over 10 years. While we are seeing UA use more of the Airbus fleet to upguage flights from stations that have been all RJ for years, there have also been cases where we've seen UA go from an RJ to a 738 or even a 739ER in less than a year.

Call me crazy but it's starting to look like the pilots may have unknowingly did UA a huge favor by holding firm on scope. In my opinion it really is starting to look like UA does not need a 100 seater aircraft to compete with AA and DL. UA has the least number of narrowbodies all UA needs is more mainline aircraft to free up the smaller 120, 126 seaters and a few used aircraft to complement the existing frames already in the fleet.


Problem is, there is still a disproportionate amount of 50 seaters in the fleet, some even still fly to major markets that shouldn't be getting 50 seater service. Think about it this way, DL's flagship (i.e, largest) hub is ATL and AA's is DFW. Both those markets have majority (over 60%) of their operations on mainline narrowbodies. Meanwhile, UA's flagship hub is ORD and has almost 60% rj's with a good percentage of those being 50 seaters. Some of those 50 seaters fly into markets where DL/AA have all or near all mainline service to their flagship hubs. How the heck does this make UA competitive? Combined with the lack of United Club's in mid-sized markets and the lack of TATL flights on either their own metal or LH's metal (compared to AA/BA and DL), it's no wonder UA is often in fourth place or lower in markets outside of their hubs.

I agree 100 seaters aren't necessarily needed, UA just simply needs more mainline flying period. Then, after they sufficiently strengthen their seven hubs, make some investments in non-hub airports.
 
peak86
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 10:19 pm

It's worth noting that like DL, I think we've seen a lot of upgauging from UA to mainline on the last flight in/first flight out of the day in a lot of these smaller markets. DEN-MSO, ORD-DLH, and many others come to mind. Last summer I was on a 737-900 from DEN-RDM and it was absolutely packed.

I think over time the strategy is definitely to slowly move up to a much higher percentage of mainline service, but until they get more aircraft like the 319/320 and 738 on property, it's going to be a slow process. Unlike DL and AA, we haven't seen UA dive head first into a mountain of debt service to pay off a bunch of brand spankin' new airplanes they've got to park somewhere. Not saying either strategy is wrong, just very different in what they allow you to do.
 
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OzarkD9S
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 10:39 pm

UA will be beefing up the hubs at ORD, DEN and IAH for those smaller city connections. SFO and LAX are more or less gate constrained so upguages are in order. EWR and IAD will find their balance between O&D focus (EWR) and connection focus (IAD). The eternal weak spot is the southeast, no new hub but IAD and IAH can serve those areas sufficiently. I dont think UA is too much concerned with intra-south, because how many people are flying GSO-BHM or whatnot and do they really need this traffic?
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ibthebigd
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 11:25 pm

I wish United would add LEX SBN FWA to DEN.

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1836Sam
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 11:31 pm

Mboyle1988 wrote:
I think they should focus on east west flying through DEN.


Well that probably would address only about, what, 25% of the domestic travel market by volume? Maybe not even that much. I really need to measure that one day ...
 
airportlover
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 11:45 pm

This is a little off-topic but does anyone actually think that EWR will become practically all-mainline and all-O&D in the near future (next 3ish years)? As of now, there is still tons of RJ service, although they have been upgauging over the past couple of years. The RJ situation at EWR is better than it once was, but they still have a long way to go. I just don’t really see all of these small to midsize cities in the Midwest and Northeast being upgauged to mainline. They probably can’t fill mainline planes on those routes, especially if they aren’t focusing on connections. What does everyone think?
 
United1
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 11:48 pm

Fargo wrote:


Combined with the lack of United Club's in mid-sized markets and the lack of TATL flights on either their own metal or LH's metal (compared to AA/BA and DL), it's no wonder UA is often in fourth place or lower in markets outside of their hubs.

I agree 100 seaters aren't necessarily needed, UA just simply needs more mainline flying period. Then, after they sufficiently strengthen their seven hubs, make some investments in non-hub airports.[/quote]

Where do you feel UA needs to add clubs?

Outside of the hubs, domestically, there are locations at: ATL, AUS, BOS, CLE, DFW, FLL, HNL,LAS, MSP, LGA, SNA, MCO, PHL, PHX, PDX, SAT, SAN, SEA & DCA. They are opening clubs at MSY and RDU later this year...I guess you can make a case for CLT and SJC but they have a pretty comprehensive club network otherwise.

I don't understand the TATL comment...UA is just slightly smaller than DL is TATL and way ahead of AA.
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airportlover
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sat Mar 23, 2019 11:57 pm

United1 wrote:

Where do you feel UA needs to add clubs?

Outside of the hubs, domestically, there are locations at: ATL, AUS, BOS, CLE, DFW, FLL, HNL,LAS, MSP, LGA, SNA, MCO, PHL, PHX, PDX, SAT, SAN, SEA & DCA. They are opening clubs at MSY and RDU later this year...I guess you can make a case for CLT and SJC but they have a pretty comprehensive club network otherwise.

I don't understand the TATL comment...UA is just slightly smaller than DL is TATL and way ahead of AA.


I think UA could add clubs at TPA, PBI, CLT, DTW, maybe MCI or STL, CMH, PIT, CVG, IND. Some of those are stretches but if UA really felt like expanding aggressively.
 
Fargo
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 12:36 am

United1 wrote:
Fargo wrote:
Combined with the lack of United Club's in mid-sized markets and the lack of TATL flights on either their own metal or LH's metal (compared to AA/BA and DL), it's no wonder UA is often in fourth place or lower in markets outside of their hubs.

I agree 100 seaters aren't necessarily needed, UA just simply needs more mainline flying period. Then, after they sufficiently strengthen their seven hubs, make some investments in non-hub airports.


Where do you feel UA needs to add clubs?

Outside of the hubs, domestically, there are locations at: ATL, AUS, BOS, CLE, DFW, FLL, HNL,LAS, MSP, LGA, SNA, MCO, PHL, PHX, PDX, SAT, SAN, SEA & DCA. They are opening clubs at MSY and RDU later this year...I guess you can make a case for CLT and SJC but they have a pretty comprehensive club network otherwise.

I don't understand the TATL comment...UA is just slightly smaller than DL is TATL and way ahead of AA.


What non-hub (not just UA hub, but any hub) cities have UA/LH TATL service? I can count SAN, MCO, TPA and soon AUS. Compare that to BA/AA and DL's extensive TATL to non-hub cities.

I think they are slowing addressing the club situation with the RDU/MSY adds. In addition to what you mentioned, BNA could make a good case for a club as well.
Last edited by Fargo on Sun Mar 24, 2019 12:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
 
1836Sam
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 12:41 am

airportlover wrote:
This is a little off-topic but does anyone actually think that EWR will become practically all-mainline and all-O&D in the near future (next 3ish years)? As of now, there is still tons of RJ service, although they have been upgauging over the past couple of years. The RJ situation at EWR is better than it once was, but they still have a long way to go. I just don’t really see all of these small to midsize cities in the Midwest and Northeast being upgauged to mainline. They probably can’t fill mainline planes on those routes, especially if they aren’t focusing on connections. What does everyone think?


No. Hubs are built for connections.
 
Fargo
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 12:45 am

airportlover wrote:
This is a little off-topic but does anyone actually think that EWR will become practically all-mainline and all-O&D in the near future (next 3ish years)? As of now, there is still tons of RJ service, although they have been upgauging over the past couple of years. The RJ situation at EWR is better than it once was, but they still have a long way to go. I just don’t really see all of these small to midsize cities in the Midwest and Northeast being upgauged to mainline. They probably can’t fill mainline planes on those routes, especially if they aren’t focusing on connections. What does everyone think?


Not all O&D as it is UA's primary TATL hub, but Scott Kirby was quoted in the following article as saying EWR will become "close to all mainline operations" at the airport.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/analysis-united-maps-future-of-newark-and-washingto-449194/
 
AaronPGH
Posts: 454
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2013 9:13 pm

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 12:48 am

Would love to see a UA club at PIT. DL flyers get access to The Club, AA is renovating the admirals club, but Star Alliance has nothing.
 
blockski
Posts: 495
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 8:30 pm

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 1:03 am

Fargo wrote:
airportlover wrote:
This is a little off-topic but does anyone actually think that EWR will become practically all-mainline and all-O&D in the near future (next 3ish years)? As of now, there is still tons of RJ service, although they have been upgauging over the past couple of years. The RJ situation at EWR is better than it once was, but they still have a long way to go. I just don’t really see all of these small to midsize cities in the Midwest and Northeast being upgauged to mainline. They probably can’t fill mainline planes on those routes, especially if they aren’t focusing on connections. What does everyone think?


Not all O&D as it is UA's primary TATL hub, but Scott Kirby was quoted in the following article as saying EWR will become "close to all mainline operations" at the airport.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/analysis-united-maps-future-of-newark-and-washingto-449194/


I don’t know why people keep screwing this up.

UA has operational reasons to make EWR as close to an all-mainline operation as possible. EWR has some severe constraints.

Eliminating RJs means some (emphasis on *some*) small markets won’t have the demand to fill a mainline jet, and thus those smaller markets will see their traffic shifted to IAD (since it’s all mostly connecting anyway).

I don’t know why people keep reading this as making EWR all O&D. They’re still going to connect tons of people there. But given the constraints at EWR, as well as the mandate for two class planes to feed the hub, they’re going to shift some connecting traffic to IAD, and additionally work to build up IAD’s domestic connections on top of that (consistent with UA’s overall domestic strategy).
 
Fargo
Topic Author
Posts: 810
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 1:17 am

blockski wrote:
Fargo wrote:
airportlover wrote:
This is a little off-topic but does anyone actually think that EWR will become practically all-mainline and all-O&D in the near future (next 3ish years)? As of now, there is still tons of RJ service, although they have been upgauging over the past couple of years. The RJ situation at EWR is better than it once was, but they still have a long way to go. I just don’t really see all of these small to midsize cities in the Midwest and Northeast being upgauged to mainline. They probably can’t fill mainline planes on those routes, especially if they aren’t focusing on connections. What does everyone think?


Not all O&D as it is UA's primary TATL hub, but Scott Kirby was quoted in the following article as saying EWR will become "close to all mainline operations" at the airport.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/analysis-united-maps-future-of-newark-and-washingto-449194/


I don’t know why people keep screwing this up.

UA has operational reasons to make EWR as close to an all-mainline operation as possible. EWR has some severe constraints.

Eliminating RJs means some (emphasis on *some*) small markets won’t have the demand to fill a mainline jet, and thus those smaller markets will see their traffic shifted to IAD (since it’s all mostly connecting anyway).

I don’t know why people keep reading this as making EWR all O&D. They’re still going to connect tons of people there. But given the constraints at EWR, as well as the mandate for two class planes to feed the hub, they’re going to shift some connecting traffic to IAD, and additionally work to build up IAD’s domestic connections on top of that (consistent with UA’s overall domestic strategy).


I never said it was going to become all O&D, I stated it is still going to be UA’s TATL hub. All I was doing was restating what Kirby said. EWR should be mostly mainline anyway. It is NYC after all.
 
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intotheair
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Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 1:32 am

Fargo wrote:
What non-hub (not just UA hub, but any hub) cities have UA/LH TATL service? I can count SAN, MCO, TPA and soon AUS. Compare that to BA/AA and DL's extensive TATL to non-hub cities.

I think they are slowing addressing the club situation with the RDU/MSY adds. In addition to what you mentioned, BNA could make a good case for a club as well.


That seems like a really dubious distinction to draw the line at any city that’s not a hub for any airline. The cities that people want to go to the most are big cities that are hubbed. UA and LH Group as it is has a ton of ASMs to the United hubs plus ATL, AUS, BOS, CLT, DFW, DTW, MIA, JFK, MCO, SAN, and TPA.

I also think that AF, BA, and their respective friends can make the secondary US cities work better because there’s a lot more O&D demand to LHR and CDG than there is to FRA and MUC. But that still doesn’t change the fact that UA and friends already do a tone of flying across the Atlantic.
300 319 320 321 332 333 345 346 717 733 734 735 73G 738 739 744 752 753 762 763 772 77W 788 789 CR2 CR7 CR9 Q400 E175 DC10 MD82 MD90
AA AF AS AY AZ B6 BA BR DL F9 FI GA HA KF LH MI QX SK SN SQ UA US VY WN
 
United1
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Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 1:40 am

Fargo wrote:
United1 wrote:
Fargo wrote:
Combined with the lack of United Club's in mid-sized markets and the lack of TATL flights on either their own metal or LH's metal (compared to AA/BA and DL), it's no wonder UA is often in fourth place or lower in markets outside of their hubs.

I agree 100 seaters aren't necessarily needed, UA just simply needs more mainline flying period. Then, after they sufficiently strengthen their seven hubs, make some investments in non-hub airports.


Where do you feel UA needs to add clubs?

Outside of the hubs, domestically, there are locations at: ATL, AUS, BOS, CLE, DFW, FLL, HNL,LAS, MSP, LGA, SNA, MCO, PHL, PHX, PDX, SAT, SAN, SEA & DCA. They are opening clubs at MSY and RDU later this year...I guess you can make a case for CLT and SJC but they have a pretty comprehensive club network otherwise.

I don't understand the TATL comment...UA is just slightly smaller than DL is TATL and way ahead of AA.


What non-hub (not just UA hub, but any hub) cities have UA/LH TATL service? I can count SAN, MCO, TPA and soon AUS. Compare that to BA/AA and DL's extensive TATL to non-hub cities.



Ahh now I understand what you are getting at...number of cities served isn't necessarily an indication of size..it's simply an indication of breadth of network. I thought you were talking about ASM/RSMs where UA and DL have a rather large lead over AA.

BA/AA do have the largest network between the US and the UK (actually the largest network between the US and any single country in Europe.) That simply because of the cultural ties between the US and the UK. Nothing UA/LH Group or DL/AF/KL/VS do is ever going to be able to match that. UA/LH Group and DL/AF/KL/VS have flights from exactly the same number of US cities to Europe...21 if I did my math right. One has flights from a mix of smaller cities and larger hub cities and the other has a network based on serving larger hub cites...it's simply a different strategy.
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Fargo
Topic Author
Posts: 810
Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2018 3:00 am

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 1:54 am

United1 wrote:
Fargo wrote:
United1 wrote:

Where do you feel UA needs to add clubs?

Outside of the hubs, domestically, there are locations at: ATL, AUS, BOS, CLE, DFW, FLL, HNL,LAS, MSP, LGA, SNA, MCO, PHL, PHX, PDX, SAT, SAN, SEA & DCA. They are opening clubs at MSY and RDU later this year...I guess you can make a case for CLT and SJC but they have a pretty comprehensive club network otherwise.

I don't understand the TATL comment...UA is just slightly smaller than DL is TATL and way ahead of AA.


What non-hub (not just UA hub, but any hub) cities have UA/LH TATL service? I can count SAN, MCO, TPA and soon AUS. Compare that to BA/AA and DL's extensive TATL to non-hub cities.



Ahh now I understand what you are getting at...number of cities served isn't necessarily an indication of size..it's simply an indication of breadth of network. I thought you were talking about ASM/RSMs where UA and DL have a rather large lead over AA.

BA/AA do have the largest network between the US and the UK (actually the largest network between the US and any single country in Europe.) That simply because of the cultural ties between the US and the UK. Nothing UA/LH Group or DL/AF/KL/VS do is ever going to be able to match that. UA/LH Group and DL/AF/KL/VS have flights from exactly the same number of US cities to Europe...21 if I did my math right. One has flights from a mix of smaller cities and larger hub cities and the other has a network based on serving larger hub cites...it's simply a different strategy.


Yes, I am not talking about ASM. UA and DL kick AA’s butt in that regard (both in TATL and TPAC). I am simply stating it is puzzling UA/LH doesn’t compete as much outside of their hubs compared to AA/BA and DL/AF/KL.
 
blockski
Posts: 495
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 8:30 pm

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 2:06 am

Fargo wrote:
blockski wrote:
Fargo wrote:

Not all O&D as it is UA's primary TATL hub, but Scott Kirby was quoted in the following article as saying EWR will become "close to all mainline operations" at the airport.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/analysis-united-maps-future-of-newark-and-washingto-449194/


I don’t know why people keep screwing this up.

UA has operational reasons to make EWR as close to an all-mainline operation as possible. EWR has some severe constraints.

Eliminating RJs means some (emphasis on *some*) small markets won’t have the demand to fill a mainline jet, and thus those smaller markets will see their traffic shifted to IAD (since it’s all mostly connecting anyway).

I don’t know why people keep reading this as making EWR all O&D. They’re still going to connect tons of people there. But given the constraints at EWR, as well as the mandate for two class planes to feed the hub, they’re going to shift some connecting traffic to IAD, and additionally work to build up IAD’s domestic connections on top of that (consistent with UA’s overall domestic strategy).


I never said it was going to become all O&D, I stated it is still going to be UA’s TATL hub. All I was doing was restating what Kirby said. EWR should be mostly mainline anyway. It is NYC after all.


I didn’t suggest you said that, either, I was just replying to your post.

But lots of people have nonetheless interpreted UA’s plan as if they are somehow not going to connect people in EWR, or that EWR will no longer be a hub. I don’t get where that comes from.
 
airportlover
Posts: 87
Joined: Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:42 pm

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 2:41 am

blockski wrote:
Fargo wrote:
airportlover wrote:
This is a little off-topic but does anyone actually think that EWR will become practically all-mainline and all-O&D in the near future (next 3ish years)? As of now, there is still tons of RJ service, although they have been upgauging over the past couple of years. The RJ situation at EWR is better than it once was, but they still have a long way to go. I just don’t really see all of these small to midsize cities in the Midwest and Northeast being upgauged to mainline. They probably can’t fill mainline planes on those routes, especially if they aren’t focusing on connections. What does everyone think?


Not all O&D as it is UA's primary TATL hub, but Scott Kirby was quoted in the following article as saying EWR will become "close to all mainline operations" at the airport.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/analysis-united-maps-future-of-newark-and-washingto-449194/


I don’t know why people keep screwing this up.

UA has operational reasons to make EWR as close to an all-mainline operation as possible. EWR has some severe constraints.

Eliminating RJs means some (emphasis on *some*) small markets won’t have the demand to fill a mainline jet, and thus those smaller markets will see their traffic shifted to IAD (since it’s all mostly connecting anyway).

I don’t know why people keep reading this as making EWR all O&D. They’re still going to connect tons of people there. But given the constraints at EWR, as well as the mandate for two class planes to feed the hub, they’re going to shift some connecting traffic to IAD, and additionally work to build up IAD’s domestic connections on top of that (consistent with UA’s overall domestic strategy).


What do you think the next small markets will be that lose service to EWR in favor of IAD (or other hubs)? Also, what are some easy upgauge opportunities out of EWR? I can think of quite a few.
 
IPFreely
Posts: 2325
Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2006 8:26 am

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 2:46 am

Fargo wrote:
It is no secret that UA lags behind DL and AA domestically.


That's not a secret or a fact, it's just your opinion.
 
United1
Posts: 3829
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 3:12 am

IPFreely wrote:
Fargo wrote:
It is no secret that UA lags behind DL and AA domestically.


That's not a secret or a fact, it's just your opinion.


Its pretty much a fact that UA has a smaller domestic network than either DL or AA does. UA makes up for it by having a larger international network than either of them do...:)

Domestic Consolidated RSMs 2018 (% change YoY)
AA 154.7 +1.9%
DL 141.6 +4.9%
UA 124.3 +7.0%

Domestic Consolidated ASMs 2018 (% change YoY)
AA 184.9 +1.7%
DL 165.6 +5.2%
UA 155.6 +6.7%
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
User avatar
intotheair
Posts: 1711
Joined: Sun Aug 31, 2014 12:49 pm

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 3:19 am

United1 wrote:
IPFreely wrote:
Fargo wrote:
It is no secret that UA lags behind DL and AA domestically.


That's not a secret or a fact, it's just your opinion.


Its pretty much a fact that UA has a smaller domestic network than either DL or AA does. UA makes up for it by having a larger international network than either of them do...:)

Domestic Consolidated RSMs 2018 (% change YoY)
AA 154.7 +1.9%
DL 141.6 +4.9%
UA 124.3 +7.0%

Domestic Consolidated ASMs 2018 (% change YoY)
AA 184.9 +1.7%
DL 165.6 +5.2%
UA 155.6 +6.7%


Do you have the numbers for international ASMs too, perhaps also split up by Pacific, Atlantic, and Latin America?
300 319 320 321 332 333 345 346 717 733 734 735 73G 738 739 744 752 753 762 763 772 77W 788 789 CR2 CR7 CR9 Q400 E175 DC10 MD82 MD90
AA AF AS AY AZ B6 BA BR DL F9 FI GA HA KF LH MI QX SK SN SQ UA US VY WN
 
United1
Posts: 3829
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 3:36 am

Fargo wrote:
United1 wrote:
Fargo wrote:

What non-hub (not just UA hub, but any hub) cities have UA/LH TATL service? I can count SAN, MCO, TPA and soon AUS. Compare that to BA/AA and DL's extensive TATL to non-hub cities.



Ahh now I understand what you are getting at...number of cities served isn't necessarily an indication of size..it's simply an indication of breadth of network. I thought you were talking about ASM/RSMs where UA and DL have a rather large lead over AA.

BA/AA do have the largest network between the US and the UK (actually the largest network between the US and any single country in Europe.) That simply because of the cultural ties between the US and the UK. Nothing UA/LH Group or DL/AF/KL/VS do is ever going to be able to match that. UA/LH Group and DL/AF/KL/VS have flights from exactly the same number of US cities to Europe...21 if I did my math right. One has flights from a mix of smaller cities and larger hub cities and the other has a network based on serving larger hub cites...it's simply a different strategy.


Yes, I am not talking about ASM. UA and DL kick AA’s butt in that regard (both in TATL and TPAC). I am simply stating it is puzzling UA/LH doesn’t compete as much outside of their hubs compared to AA/BA and DL/AF/KL.


UA/LH do...they just mostly compete from other airlines hubs vs DL/AF/KL which serve a few other airlines hubs and a few mid sized cities as well. Just a different strategy and both strategies seem to work well for their respective groups.
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
United1
Posts: 3829
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 3:49 am

intotheair wrote:
United1 wrote:
IPFreely wrote:

That's not a secret or a fact, it's just your opinion.


Its pretty much a fact that UA has a smaller domestic network than either DL or AA does. UA makes up for it by having a larger international network than either of them do...:)

Domestic Consolidated RSMs 2018 (% change YoY)
AA 154.7 +1.9%
DL 141.6 +4.9%
UA 124.3 +7.0%

Domestic Consolidated ASMs 2018 (% change YoY)
AA 184.9 +1.7%
DL 165.6 +5.2%
UA 155.6 +6.7%


Do you have the numbers for international ASMs too, perhaps also split up by Pacific, Atlantic, and Latin America?


Pacific
UA 43.4
DL 23.6
AA 19.5

Atlantic
DL 50.7
UA 49.7
AA 39.2

Latin America
AA 38.5
UA 26.5
DL 23.4

Domestic
AA 184.9
DL 165.6
UA 155.6

Total System
AA 282.1 +2.0%
UA 275.3 +4.9%
DL 263.4 +3.6%

https://americanairlines.gcs-web.com/ne ... ull-year-3

https://hub.united.com/united-reports-d ... 68212.html

https://s2.q4cdn.com/181345880/files/do ... r-2018.pdf
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
MIflyer12
Posts: 5396
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 11:58 pm

Re: United's long term domestic strategy

Sun Mar 24, 2019 10:16 am

intotheair wrote:
Do you have the numbers for international ASMs too, perhaps also split up by Pacific, Atlantic, and Latin America?


United1 indulged you, but all three carriers routinely publish ASMs and RPMs by region. For example:

https://hub.united.com/united-reports-d ... 68212.html

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