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Re: Why doesn't America have an international leisure airline?

Sat May 04, 2019 10:31 pm

janders wrote:
The U.S has had tons of such carriers. Just off the top of my head some examples - ATA, Sun Country, USA3000, North American, Miami Air, Swift, Rich Intl, ExpressOne, World, Tower, Sierra Pacific, Eastern, Xtra, etc.

The leisure carriers you mention primarily fly folks that purchased on tour packages and are charters in essence. Over the years some have evolved into LCC or seat only sales, but their historic bread and butter is tour operators, and the U.S. has had tons of airlines that can cater for such demand.

Apart from Sun Country, USA3000 and ATA and Tower Air to an extent don't the rest of these airlines (or at least those who are alive now) specialise in ACMI or military/non-leisure charters? Not that familiar so I may be 100% wrong here but that's what I thought
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Re: Why doesn't America have an international leisure airline?

Sat May 04, 2019 11:15 pm

Europe used to have far more leisure airlines, back in the day when scheduled flying was the preserve of national flag carriers with a bewildering array of ticket categories such as APEX, super APEX etc. they provided a way of flying abroad at a reasonable price. Deregulation and the rise of FR, U2 etc has had a huge impact. It used to be that if as an example you wanted to fly from the UK to Cyprus, the leisure airlines all operated the route on a Tuesday, flights from multiple airlines and destinations would all arrive at Pafos in a 2 hour time slot making it easy for the coaches taking you to the hotels. Holidays were usually in multiples of 7 days.
Now we can choose which day we want to fly and for how long.
The result has been that we have lost Monarch and other charter airlines, Thomas Cook is up for sale, others will go the same way.

Its not that the US is out of step with not having leisure airlines, we probably won't have any in a few years time.
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Re: Why doesn't America have an international leisure airline?

Sun May 05, 2019 12:50 am

Agreed, I think "traditional" leisure airlines are dying out in Europe anyway. We've had two significant independent carriers, Germania and Monarch, go out of business in the past couple of years. I can't think of many players outside the TUI or Thomas Cook Group.

I think for airlines to be viable in the European short haul space they will increasingly need to make routes successful without relying on packages. If you look at Jet2 vs Thomas Cook for instance, Jet2 is a cost driven LCC first and foremost that has established a packaged holiday business which helps to fill up its planes, but it's not solely dependent on that. Nor do I get the impression that they are told where to fly on the basis of the package arm of the business.

On the other hand, it appears for Thomas Cook, it's the packaged holiday business that determines where the planes will fly, at least on the short-haul.
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Re: Why doesn't America have an international leisure airline?

Sun May 05, 2019 2:34 am

9w748capt wrote:
VSMUT wrote:
9w748capt wrote:

Hahaha wow. Sure we're productive, yet most Americans will work their butts off and never be able to afford an actual vacation.

Especially ironic given that some of those countries with the most days off are also the most productive, more so than the US in many cases: ... JWJ1Vvw8Pb

Great point. I for one would have no issue living in a country that paid it's citizens a fair wage with guaranteed vacation time, and actually provided them with basic health care (among other things). Wow that sounds horrible. And yet Donnie wonders why more people don't immigrate here from Norway, LOL.

As a native of the United States I have yet to meet an immigrant from Norway...LOL.
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Re: Why doesn't America have an international leisure airline?

Sun May 05, 2019 7:28 am

Mainly because the US is a huge country. If I compare to Europe, flying from central Europe to places like Antalya Turkey or Agadir Morocco, would take 2-3 hours only. As nearly no legacy carrier would fly there, if none, on a regular daily schedule, the best option is charter airline that is booked with the exact needed schedule and frequencies. And then as these places have very low living costs compared to Europe, accommodation, food and leisures are very cheap compared to Europe.
Distances and prices are the points that make everything different in regards to holiday travel in the US vs Europe.
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Re: Why doesn't America have an international leisure airline?

Sun May 05, 2019 10:08 am

One superficial reason could be that in Europe, tour operators historically offered holidays to (at the time) relatively obscure towns in Spain/Portugal etc. that were not well covered by mainline airlines. So if you needed to get from say Birmingham or Hamburg to Palma de Mallorca, you probably needed to fly a holiday/leisure airline as Iberia or BA or whoever would have stuck to the mainline routes like London to Madrid/Barcelona.
In the US, all the main holiday spots in Southern Florida/the Caribbean/Hawaii etc are very well covered by the big network airlines. Generally speaking you can probably get anywhere within the US+Canada+Mexico with 1 stop within a reasonable time frame.
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Re: Why doesn't America have an international leisure airline?

Sun May 05, 2019 4:36 pm

Doesn't Omni International do scheduled charters between Hawaii and Las Vegas? They used to do tour packages for the Las Vegas market from Hawaii, with cheap and cheerful trips.

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