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JamesCousins
Posts: 484
Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2017 1:19 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 3:42 pm

OA940 wrote:
Yes but to where? While I assume many would choose them over BA (assuming the same price on a route) there would also be many who would do the opposite. I wish them luck if they're planning a large expansion like this but I'm not sure how effective it can be


The problem is that Virgin currently can't open routes, because they lack really any feed from connections bolstering passenger numbers. I think a VS with substantially more slots could really compete with BA and fight on prices - issue they're having is that it has to happen on scale, that's why they've struggled opening one or two singular routes in the past.
Q400, A320-200, A321-200, 737-500, 737-800, 747-400, 757-200, 787-9 // FCA, TOM, TUI, MON, MT, BA, VS, DL, BE, X9, OLY // Upcoming: W6 A320, W6 A321, EVA 77W, VS 787-9m AS A320, VS A35K, KLM E190, KLM 738, LS 737
 
JamesCousins
Posts: 484
Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2017 1:19 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 3:44 pm

strfyr51 wrote:
questions wrote:
What’s a ballpark figure as to how many aircraft VS would have to order to utilize 150 slots?

If they're out AND back slots? 75 at a minimum not accounting for airplanes in checks, repair etc. More like 80.


All depends on the split of long haul and short/medium hall. A narrowbody will utilize far more daily slots than a widebody if that's the expansion route they wish to go
Q400, A320-200, A321-200, 737-500, 737-800, 747-400, 757-200, 787-9 // FCA, TOM, TUI, MON, MT, BA, VS, DL, BE, X9, OLY // Upcoming: W6 A320, W6 A321, EVA 77W, VS 787-9m AS A320, VS A35K, KLM E190, KLM 738, LS 737
 
axiom
Posts: 901
Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2015 10:39 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 3:45 pm

JamesCousins wrote:
OA940 wrote:
Yes but to where? While I assume many would choose them over BA (assuming the same price on a route) there would also be many who would do the opposite. I wish them luck if they're planning a large expansion like this but I'm not sure how effective it can be


The problem is that Virgin currently can't open routes, because they lack really any feed from connections bolstering passenger numbers. I think a VS with substantially more slots could really compete with BA and fight on prices - issue they're having is that it has to happen on scale, that's why they've struggled opening one or two singular routes in the past.


Indeed, this is the most sensible argument for an “all or nothing” claim to slots — VS needs scale to build any kind of connecting operation. It would be interesting to know what scale of connectivity is necessary to unlock a new series of destinations.
 
SelseyBill
Posts: 713
Joined: Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:38 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 3:50 pm

skipness1E wrote:
musman9853 wrote:
skipness1E wrote:
No, Boris is REALLY against Heathrow expansion, it caused him no end of grief as a cabinet member in May’s govt, but it’s finally moving ahead thankfully.


with him being the most likely next british PM, i wonder if there's anything he can to do to stymie it?


I was convinced he'd cancel it BUT it seems as if that's not gonna happen. Too much steam behind it now that it has gone through Parliament and been passed with a big majority. Boris has bigger problems with Brexit and holding onto his seat which is very tight now. He has backtracked recently and when asked avoids the question. The bigger worry is the Climate Emergency Eco-Loons whose religious zeal means the law of the land can be set aside in defiance.


.....can I drive the bulldozer please ?
 
eurotrader85
Posts: 163
Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2018 8:45 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 5:15 pm

f4f3a wrote:
Have heard a rumour that a lot of future slots had been pre allocated . Amongst others that easyJet had Been offered some . Maybe a deal could de done so that a code share could be agreed on some routes

I heard a similar rumour on the basis to spread the market offering, but further it also included Thomas Cook Airlines, which I guess means discussion is subject to change. This was also linked to the ‘sixth’ terminal which would be a cut price budget terminal.

par13del wrote:
steveinbc wrote:
Interesting stats. That BA have 53% of slots is indeed dominant. But is this any more dominant than LH at FRA or AF at CDG or DL at ATL. Don't even know what the main Chinese carrier is at Beijing but I'm sure it's up there.

More interested in just looking at their situation, not equivalence, the article states that no other carrier has more than 5%, that's a wow and is the end of the story in my opinion.


Not that different to most hubs around the world, and unlike most city hubs, passengers in London have a choice of six airports to fly from (Yes let’s include SEN for demonstration of the point), where other airlines have centred operations to compete for traffic to/from London.

GCT64 wrote:
tphuang wrote:
auction the slots, VS shouldn't be given slots just because they demand them. And some should be kept around for new entrants.


That's the logical approach if demand exceeds supply - auction the slots to the highest bidder and use the money to help pay for the runway and infrastructure improvements.


The most logical and economically efficient way forward. Will maximise the revenue for development, if auctioned correctly, and will bring a new equilibrium price for the exchange of slots on the secondary market. Even when R3 is open, all slots will be acquired instantly. The airport was full fifteen years ago.

SelseyBill wrote:
Sydscott wrote:
TUGMASTER wrote:
All HOT AIR from VS.... they had the opportunity with chance to purchase BD......
Also, pretty sure VS still lease out some slots....?

Anyhow , DL call the shots now, not windbag SRB


Couldn't agree more! The fact that EK, QR, EY, CX and a litany of other airlines have been able to expand their slot holdings at LHR over the years and that VS has done nothing but miss opportunities to buy slots and then whinge about it all later says everything about VS. Rent seekers and free loaders should not be rewarded with more slots, they should go to airlines with a proven ability to utilise them and provide maximum public benefit. If that is IAG then so be it.


....spot on.

Im tired of VS whinging about BA's 'monopoly' at LHR. Compared to who exactly?
……………..
We should all stop being so 'dewey-eyed' about VS. They've had plenty of opportunities to expand @ LHR in the past and the cash to do it; but they've dropped the ball every time. Branson was good friends with John Bishop at British Midland and could have had BD for relatively next to nothing, but he wanted a VS/BD 'merger' under the VS brand, and wanted it for free. BA offered LH quite a low price, but succeeded because at least they offered LH something. Thus we end up with LHR-AUS/BNA/MSY/PIT/SJC etc etc.

I challenge the notion that VS is somehow 'Britains 2nd flag carrier'.

They are 'Delta-UK'. They are 'Delta-East'. I love Delta; they're my #1 US airline and I love flying them; but we shouldn't consider VS @ LHR as anything else now other than another Delta hub. Before VS starts to make ultimatums about how many slots they can demand when and if R3 is built, perhaps we should have a look at the % of slots DL has at ATL/ the % of slots AF has at CDG/ the % of slots of slots KL has at AMS/ the % of slots EK, QR and UA have at their home airports, and make sure that BA/IAG has the average number of home slots that each of these aviation giants enjoys at their home hubs.

At least BA has utilised their slot allocation reasonably well over the years; which is more than you can say about VS.


Bang on. Glad other people see this for what it is. There is a market value for slots at LHR and VS has had MANY opportunities to add to its portfolio. IAG has not been the only slot acquirer at LHR, and plenty of other airlines have been leasing theirs out, so if VS was serious it would up its game and join the market. No one is blind to see that it has become Delta-UK and how the destination portfolio has changed to supplement the mother company.

Delta wants to be a global airline with hubs on many continents. Fine. But then they should pay top dollar at the table when they become available. Not whinge like some child that they should be treated differently. You can guarantee IAG will pay the £££ for them, as will others.

Ultimately a new equilibrium price for slots will evolve out of this. Airlines can’t hoard the slots and not use them. They will need to make a return on the capital outlay. Similarly one airline couldn’t buy them all and try to charge through the nose for air fares. People will use the competition that is already there. It is up to DL/VS how involved in the mix it wants to be.
 
SelseyBill
Posts: 713
Joined: Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:38 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 8:06 pm

axiom wrote:
JamesCousins wrote:
OA940 wrote:
Yes but to where? While I assume many would choose them over BA (assuming the same price on a route) there would also be many who would do the opposite. I wish them luck if they're planning a large expansion like this but I'm not sure how effective it can be


The problem is that Virgin currently can't open routes, because they lack really any feed from connections bolstering passenger numbers. I think a VS with substantially more slots could really compete with BA and fight on prices - issue they're having is that it has to happen on scale, that's why they've struggled opening one or two singular routes in the past.


Indeed, this is the most sensible argument for an “all or nothing” claim to slots — VS needs scale to build any kind of connecting operation. It would be interesting to know what scale of connectivity is necessary to unlock a new series of destinations.


No; its a terrible argument.

What VS + DL may 'need' at LHR is irrelevant to what they should or may be allocated. VS are effectively now a 'foreign' airline, why should VS/DL be given enough slots to develop another LHR hub, when DL/AF/KL has a huge dominating presence at CDG and AMS? VS have royally screwed up their numerous opportunities to develop something significant at LHR; why should they be given it on a platter now?

What 'new series of destinations' do you have in mind? I suspect if 'Delta-UK' was given more slots, all it would end up doing is bolstering DL's TATL service. Look at all the cities VS have vacated since the DL deal in favour of more USA flights.

Maybe if BA gets a chunk of new slots, maybe they can look at serving LHR-DTW/MSP and SLC daily?
 
axiom
Posts: 901
Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2015 10:39 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 8:59 pm

SelseyBill wrote:
axiom wrote:
JamesCousins wrote:

The problem is that Virgin currently can't open routes, because they lack really any feed from connections bolstering passenger numbers. I think a VS with substantially more slots could really compete with BA and fight on prices - issue they're having is that it has to happen on scale, that's why they've struggled opening one or two singular routes in the past.


Indeed, this is the most sensible argument for an “all or nothing” claim to slots — VS needs scale to build any kind of connecting operation. It would be interesting to know what scale of connectivity is necessary to unlock a new series of destinations.


No; its a terrible argument.

What VS + DL may 'need' at LHR is irrelevant to what they should or may be allocated. VS are effectively now a 'foreign' airline, why should VS/DL be given enough slots to develop another LHR hub, when DL/AF/KL has a huge dominating presence at CDG and AMS? VS have royally screwed up their numerous opportunities to develop something significant at LHR; why should they be given it on a platter now?

What 'new series of destinations' do you have in mind? I suspect if 'Delta-UK' was given more slots, all it would end up doing is bolstering DL's TATL service. Look at all the cities VS have vacated since the DL deal in favour of more USA flights.

Maybe if BA gets a chunk of new slots, maybe they can look at serving LHR-DTW/MSP and SLC daily?


I’m not saying that they should be awarded slots - just that it would be the most interesting argument, one which could be connected to claims of consumer benefits (“true competition”). Interesting is not a signal of agreement.
 
questions
Posts: 2337
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 9:10 pm

JamesCousins wrote:
strfyr51 wrote:
questions wrote:
What’s a ballpark figure as to how many aircraft VS would have to order to utilize 150 slots?

If they're out AND back slots? 75 at a minimum not accounting for airplanes in checks, repair etc. More like 80.


All depends on the split of long haul and short/medium hall. A narrowbody will utilize far more daily slots than a widebody if that's the expansion route they wish to go


Yes, of course it depends on the network VS designs. 150 slots seems to require a large number of aircraft to build a network that utilizes the slots. That’s a hefty financial investment VS, or their partners, will have to make.
 
JamesCousins
Posts: 484
Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2017 1:19 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 9:39 pm

questions wrote:
JamesCousins wrote:
strfyr51 wrote:
If they're out AND back slots? 75 at a minimum not accounting for airplanes in checks, repair etc. More like 80.


All depends on the split of long haul and short/medium hall. A narrowbody will utilize far more daily slots than a widebody if that's the expansion route they wish to go


Yes, of course it depends on the network VS designs. 150 slots seems to require a large number of aircraft to build a network that utilizes the slots. That’s a hefty financial investment VS, or their partners, will have to make.


Agreed, but an opportunity that would seem to fit in with the long term vision post-DL investment. The chance to become more dominant below BA is hugely valuable at LHR
Q400, A320-200, A321-200, 737-500, 737-800, 747-400, 757-200, 787-9 // FCA, TOM, TUI, MON, MT, BA, VS, DL, BE, X9, OLY // Upcoming: W6 A320, W6 A321, EVA 77W, VS 787-9m AS A320, VS A35K, KLM E190, KLM 738, LS 737
 
JamesCousins
Posts: 484
Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2017 1:19 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 9:44 pm

SelseyBill wrote:
axiom wrote:
JamesCousins wrote:

The problem is that Virgin currently can't open routes, because they lack really any feed from connections bolstering passenger numbers. I think a VS with substantially more slots could really compete with BA and fight on prices - issue they're having is that it has to happen on scale, that's why they've struggled opening one or two singular routes in the past.


Indeed, this is the most sensible argument for an “all or nothing” claim to slots — VS needs scale to build any kind of connecting operation. It would be interesting to know what scale of connectivity is necessary to unlock a new series of destinations.


No; its a terrible argument.

What VS + DL may 'need' at LHR is irrelevant to what they should or may be allocated. VS are effectively now a 'foreign' airline, why should VS/DL be given enough slots to develop another LHR hub, when DL/AF/KL has a huge dominating presence at CDG and AMS? VS have royally screwed up their numerous opportunities to develop something significant at LHR; why should they be given it on a platter now?

What 'new series of destinations' do you have in mind? I suspect if 'Delta-UK' was given more slots, all it would end up doing is bolstering DL's TATL service. Look at all the cities VS have vacated since the DL deal in favour of more USA flights.

Maybe if BA gets a chunk of new slots, maybe they can look at serving LHR-DTW/MSP and SLC daily?


I'm not at all suggesting that Virgin should just be handed 150 daily slots for the sake of it, if someone like EasyJet will bid more and has a reputable plan that is the place the slot(s) should go, I'm just saying the BA model works so well because they have so much feed. The high frequency of BA's Europe network is there for good reason, to fill those large wide-bodies going further afield - maybe the reason VS have focused on TATL is because that's where they can operate profitably, and without the existence of VS you may as well give BA free reign over LHR. If they could bolster feed I'd argue routes eastward would become more viable, but I'm happy to be proved wrong.

VS have made innumerable errors over the past 20/30 years, but you've got to admit they don't have it half as easy as BA at Heathrow - inferior terminal, far inferior slot portfolio - it can't be easy competing with BA, and rightly so.
Q400, A320-200, A321-200, 737-500, 737-800, 747-400, 757-200, 787-9 // FCA, TOM, TUI, MON, MT, BA, VS, DL, BE, X9, OLY // Upcoming: W6 A320, W6 A321, EVA 77W, VS 787-9m AS A320, VS A35K, KLM E190, KLM 738, LS 737
 
GVROB
Posts: 15
Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2017 1:16 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:56 pm

SelseyBill wrote:
axiom wrote:
JamesCousins wrote:

The problem is that Virgin currently can't open routes, because they lack really any feed from connections bolstering passenger numbers. I think a VS with substantially more slots could really compete with BA and fight on prices - issue they're having is that it has to happen on scale, that's why they've struggled opening one or two singular routes in the past.


Indeed, this is the most sensible argument for an “all or nothing” claim to slots — VS needs scale to build any kind of connecting operation. It would be interesting to know what scale of connectivity is necessary to unlock a new series of destinations.


No; its a terrible argument.

What VS + DL may 'need' at LHR is irrelevant to what they should or may be allocated. VS are effectively now a 'foreign' airline, why should VS/DL be given enough slots to develop another LHR hub, when DL/AF/KL has a huge dominating presence at CDG and AMS? VS have royally screwed up their numerous opportunities to develop something significant at LHR; why should they be given it on a platter now?

What 'new series of destinations' do you have in mind? I suspect if 'Delta-UK' was given more slots, all it would end up doing is bolstering DL's TATL service. Look at all the cities VS have vacated since the DL deal in favour of more USA flights.

Maybe if BA gets a chunk of new slots, maybe they can look at serving LHR-DTW/MSP and SLC daily?


Do you work for BA? You're incredibly negative in regard to VS. Everyone makes mistakes but as you've said, they're effectively a different entity with deeper pockets now.. You could make the argument that they weren't in a position to make do with gaining extra slots earlier in their history. More slots = more planes which come at a cost. Fair play for them wanting to give it a go now they can. Comparisons to Atlanta and American based airlines as a whole are unfair as it's a totally different market.
 
Sydscott
Posts: 3513
Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2003 11:50 am

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Thu Jun 27, 2019 11:34 pm

GVROB wrote:
SelseyBill wrote:
axiom wrote:

Indeed, this is the most sensible argument for an “all or nothing” claim to slots — VS needs scale to build any kind of connecting operation. It would be interesting to know what scale of connectivity is necessary to unlock a new series of destinations.


No; its a terrible argument.

What VS + DL may 'need' at LHR is irrelevant to what they should or may be allocated. VS are effectively now a 'foreign' airline, why should VS/DL be given enough slots to develop another LHR hub, when DL/AF/KL has a huge dominating presence at CDG and AMS? VS have royally screwed up their numerous opportunities to develop something significant at LHR; why should they be given it on a platter now?

What 'new series of destinations' do you have in mind? I suspect if 'Delta-UK' was given more slots, all it would end up doing is bolstering DL's TATL service. Look at all the cities VS have vacated since the DL deal in favour of more USA flights.

Maybe if BA gets a chunk of new slots, maybe they can look at serving LHR-DTW/MSP and SLC daily?


Do you work for BA? You're incredibly negative in regard to VS. Everyone makes mistakes but as you've said, they're effectively a different entity with deeper pockets now.. You could make the argument that they weren't in a position to make do with gaining extra slots earlier in their history. More slots = more planes which come at a cost. Fair play for them wanting to give it a go now they can. Comparisons to Atlanta and American based airlines as a whole are unfair as it's a totally different market.


There is actually no reasonable basis to make that argument because if VS had successfully acquired, for example, the BD slots there would have been ample commercial justification for tapping shareholders for additional equity to fund an expansion and ramp up of capacity. So to say they wouldn't have been in a position to expand if they had acquired a sizeable chunk of slots is somewhat spurious. The fact is that numerous other airlines have traded slots packages of varying sizes and through all of that VS have failed to acquire any meaningful number of them. BA has been relatively active in that market but VS has been virtually non-existent while at the same time complaining about BA being so much larger. You can't have it both ways. You can't complain about someone else while at the same time fail at any meaningful expansion while others have succeeded.
 
GVROB
Posts: 15
Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2017 1:16 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 12:05 am

Sydscott wrote:
GVROB wrote:
SelseyBill wrote:

No; its a terrible argument.

What VS + DL may 'need' at LHR is irrelevant to what they should or may be allocated. VS are effectively now a 'foreign' airline, why should VS/DL be given enough slots to develop another LHR hub, when DL/AF/KL has a huge dominating presence at CDG and AMS? VS have royally screwed up their numerous opportunities to develop something significant at LHR; why should they be given it on a platter now?

What 'new series of destinations' do you have in mind? I suspect if 'Delta-UK' was given more slots, all it would end up doing is bolstering DL's TATL service. Look at all the cities VS have vacated since the DL deal in favour of more USA flights.

Maybe if BA gets a chunk of new slots, maybe they can look at serving LHR-DTW/MSP and SLC daily?


Do you work for BA? You're incredibly negative in regard to VS. Everyone makes mistakes but as you've said, they're effectively a different entity with deeper pockets now.. You could make the argument that they weren't in a position to make do with gaining extra slots earlier in their history. More slots = more planes which come at a cost. Fair play for them wanting to give it a go now they can. Comparisons to Atlanta and American based airlines as a whole are unfair as it's a totally different market.


There is actually no reasonable basis to make that argument because if VS had successfully acquired, for example, the BD slots there would have been ample commercial justification for tapping shareholders for additional equity to fund an expansion and ramp up of capacity. So to say they wouldn't have been in a position to expand if they had acquired a sizeable chunk of slots is somewhat spurious. The fact is that numerous other airlines have traded slots packages of varying sizes and through all of that VS have failed to acquire any meaningful number of them. BA has been relatively active in that market but VS has been virtually non-existent while at the same time complaining about BA being so much larger. You can't have it both ways. You can't complain about someone else while at the same time fail at any meaningful expansion while others have succeeded.


Which airline has succeeded in expanding at LHR who hasn't been dominate at their home hub or point of sale?
 
Sydscott
Posts: 3513
Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2003 11:50 am

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 3:33 am

GVROB wrote:
Sydscott wrote:
GVROB wrote:

Do you work for BA? You're incredibly negative in regard to VS. Everyone makes mistakes but as you've said, they're effectively a different entity with deeper pockets now.. You could make the argument that they weren't in a position to make do with gaining extra slots earlier in their history. More slots = more planes which come at a cost. Fair play for them wanting to give it a go now they can. Comparisons to Atlanta and American based airlines as a whole are unfair as it's a totally different market.


There is actually no reasonable basis to make that argument because if VS had successfully acquired, for example, the BD slots there would have been ample commercial justification for tapping shareholders for additional equity to fund an expansion and ramp up of capacity. So to say they wouldn't have been in a position to expand if they had acquired a sizeable chunk of slots is somewhat spurious. The fact is that numerous other airlines have traded slots packages of varying sizes and through all of that VS have failed to acquire any meaningful number of them. BA has been relatively active in that market but VS has been virtually non-existent while at the same time complaining about BA being so much larger. You can't have it both ways. You can't complain about someone else while at the same time fail at any meaningful expansion while others have succeeded.


Which airline has succeeded in expanding at LHR who hasn't been dominate at their home hub or point of sale?


That's actually an easy question to answer - British Airways. They've built dominance by buying slots.

In Summer 2001 British Airways held 36% of the slots at LHR. Hardly a dominant position. In Summer 2012 it was 44.1% so 16% growth in total slots over 12 years prior to the acquisition of BMI.

The following article has a table that lists out all of the publicly known Heathrow trades over the years prior to 2014 - https://centreforaviation.com/analysis/ ... ain-108646.

So including the BMI transaction 133 slot pairs changed hands between 2001 and 2013 and they are just the ones in the public domain. Imagine, just for a moment, if out of those 133 slot pairs Virgin had secured more than 5.......they could have built in the same dominance. And as you can see from the table none of this includes slots acquired by the likes of EK, EY, QR and CX all of whom have acquired slots over the years and built a sizeable presence at LHR.

Again, you can't complain about someone else succeeding given the systemic failure over multiple years to get out and do deals to expand the slot holding. Ineptitude and incompetence should not be rewarded in preference to anyone else who could make better use of slots and expand competition. Frankly, when the LHR runway is built the best thing for Heathrow would be a meaningful LCC presence to put some pressure on prices.
 
TUGMASTER
Posts: 1205
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 9:18 am

Why should HAL give a foreign airline so much.?
VS is 80% owned outside the U.K.
VS are not the VS everybody grew up with.
SRB no longer the visionary aviator, the Robin Hood of the London market....
Now just a mouthpiece muppet for other investors (DL/AF/KL) jumped on and bought his gravy train.
 
skipness1E
Posts: 4813
Joined: Sun Aug 19, 2007 9:18 am

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 9:37 am

That's a great point, the younger SRB was a champion of the consumer against big business in his younger days and got very wealthy in doing so. However has now morphed into a classic ageing globalist who is very much an establishment figure who doesn't want the status quo upset.

Having said that, I think it's a good thing that BA have VS to fight as the whole BA/AA JV is a VERY powerful offering in market and VS do a (semi-) decent job of keeping them honest. It's a VERY tricky change in business model to go from a well known point to point international carrier to one supported by a feeder network, think of Pan Am buying out National. Virgin's Little Red was a similar mis-step IMHO.

If Virgin was serious about feeding LHR then STAR would have been a better fit than SKYTEAM, where the partners are across in T4, with only room in T3 for Delta. Not sure how keen Air France and KLM are to funnel their own frequent fliers off their own metal and onto a Virgin long haul flight instead of using AMS or CDG.

Hence Connect Airways I suspect, even today the volume of flybe traffic at LHR has markedly increased. The trick for me is how on earth does high frequency low capacity turboprops work where A320s didn't, at an airport where pricing hammers anything that small?

Hope it works out though, I do like the brand and they're a good outfit to fly, not as good as they once were but in the West, who actually is?
 
Bongodog49
Posts: 182
Joined: Fri Feb 08, 2019 11:35 am

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 9:38 am

TUGMASTER wrote:
Why should HAL give a foreign airline so much.?
VS is 80% owned outside the U.K.
VS are not the VS everybody grew up with.
SRB no longer the visionary aviator, the Robin Hood of the London market....
Now just a mouthpiece muppet for other investors (DL/AF/KL) jumped on and bought his gravy train.
thast I would

My only issue with your figures is that I would state that 100% of VS is owned outside of the UK. Richard Bransons holding is entirely controlled via offshore trusts and he himself is a tax exile
 
TUGMASTER
Posts: 1205
Joined: Wed Jul 07, 2004 8:56 pm

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 9:52 am

Very true Bongodog....
Forgot SRB channels his pound notes via tax havens
 
Boeing74741R
Posts: 1400
Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2007 5:44 am

Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 11:55 am

TUGMASTER wrote:
Why should HAL give a foreign airline so much.?
VS is 80% owned outside the U.K.


What relevance does ownership have? How does that compare to BA being owned by a Spanish-registered company for instance?

skipness1E wrote:
Not sure how keen Air France and KLM are to funnel their own frequent fliers off their own metal and onto a Virgin long haul flight instead of using AMS or CDG.


I don't think they're too concerned because that's what they've recently started doing. Air France and KLM now codeshare on certain VS flights from the UK and VS also codeshare some of Air France and KLM's North American flights including the connecting flights from the UK to CDG and AMS. You can also book return VS flights to/from the UK on AF/KL flight numbers (some people have reported decent savings in PE and Upper versus booking direct with VS).

https://news.klm.com/klm-air-france-and ... rtnership/

Admittedly it's a faff if you're changing at MAN at the moment because AF/KL use T3 which is far away from T2 that VS use. However, a quick search for AMS-MCO (just selected as an example) offers a one-stop option via MAN and they could well move to T2 in the future as the redevelopment continues which would make transfers easier. Hopefully that will happen along with Flybe moving as well, though that is for another thread.
 
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OA940
Posts: 1990
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 12:11 pm

SelseyBill wrote:
axiom wrote:
JamesCousins wrote:

The problem is that Virgin currently can't open routes, because they lack really any feed from connections bolstering passenger numbers. I think a VS with substantially more slots could really compete with BA and fight on prices - issue they're having is that it has to happen on scale, that's why they've struggled opening one or two singular routes in the past.


Indeed, this is the most sensible argument for an “all or nothing” claim to slots — VS needs scale to build any kind of connecting operation. It would be interesting to know what scale of connectivity is necessary to unlock a new series of destinations.


No; its a terrible argument.

What VS + DL may 'need' at LHR is irrelevant to what they should or may be allocated. VS are effectively now a 'foreign' airline, why should VS/DL be given enough slots to develop another LHR hub, when DL/AF/KL has a huge dominating presence at CDG and AMS? VS have royally screwed up their numerous opportunities to develop something significant at LHR; why should they be given it on a platter now?

What 'new series of destinations' do you have in mind? I suspect if 'Delta-UK' was given more slots, all it would end up doing is bolstering DL's TATL service. Look at all the cities VS have vacated since the DL deal in favour of more USA flights.

Maybe if BA gets a chunk of new slots, maybe they can look at serving LHR-DTW/MSP and SLC daily?


Lol Delta UK. This alone is enough to disqualify your entire arguement. So I guess we should call BA ''Qatar UK'' then. Or China Southern ''American Airlines China''. Sorry to burst your bubble but this happens all over the world all the time, so by your logic basically no airline would be allowed slots at local airports. IAG could use some competition on many of its long-haul routes. It's by far not unreasonable

Also when exactly has VS gotten opportunities to significantly scale up operations at LHR to the degree it would actually make a difference? Also if you're gonna whine about DL/AF/KL's presence in Europe you should also look at IAG in MAD, BCN and DUB and LH Group in FRA, MUC, ZRH and VIE. But haters gotta hate somehow I guess
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JamesCousins
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 12:43 pm

TUGMASTER wrote:
Why should HAL give a foreign airline so much.?
VS is 80% owned outside the U.K.
VS are not the VS everybody grew up with.
SRB no longer the visionary aviator, the Robin Hood of the London market....
Now just a mouthpiece muppet for other investors (DL/AF/KL) jumped on and bought his gravy train.


Oh give over, Virgin Atlantic is hardly a 'foreign airline'. The airline and its subsidiaries are all UK-registered Limited companies, paying tax in the UK - just because Branson funnels his personal profits through offshore accounts doesn't mean VS as an entity does too. Frankly, without DL, and to an extend AF/KLM, VS may cease to exist completely - that would be a lot of UK jobs lost as foreign airlines filled the VS-shaped gap.

Say what you want about Branson, but Virgin is a UK airline supporting the UK economy, with growth, benefiting the UK economy, enabled by crucial foreign investment.
Q400, A320-200, A321-200, 737-500, 737-800, 747-400, 757-200, 787-9 // FCA, TOM, TUI, MON, MT, BA, VS, DL, BE, X9, OLY // Upcoming: W6 A320, W6 A321, EVA 77W, VS 787-9m AS A320, VS A35K, KLM E190, KLM 738, LS 737
 
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DL717
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 12:49 pm

questions wrote:
What’s a ballpark figure as to how many aircraft VS would have to order to utilize 150 slots?


Depends on if it’s short haul or long haul expansion. If they make it into a narrow body hub, your probably looking at 30 or so narrows and 10 wides, probably a mix of 220/320/350/787 family, maybe some E175 birds. If they want to keep it simple and focus on larger markets for short haul, the 220/320 fleet makes more sense.
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goosebayguy
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 12:57 pm

Virgin are dreaming. My guess is that any newly created slots will be allocated according to current slot percentages. BA will get 55% and VS 10%.
 
jfk777
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 1:21 pm

When the third runway gets built, Easyjet and Rynnair get slots at LHR one has to wonder if that is good economic use of slots compared to long haul flights ? Similar to today there will be a secondary market for those slots leading the lcc airlines to sell to the long haul ones eventually. How can the economics of LHR support an Easyjet flight to Brussels? LHR will remain London Premium airport, the others will have the lcc traffic.
 
GVROB
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 1:31 pm

Sydscott wrote:
GVROB wrote:
Sydscott wrote:

There is actually no reasonable basis to make that argument because if VS had successfully acquired, for example, the BD slots there would have been ample commercial justification for tapping shareholders for additional equity to fund an expansion and ramp up of capacity. So to say they wouldn't have been in a position to expand if they had acquired a sizeable chunk of slots is somewhat spurious. The fact is that numerous other airlines have traded slots packages of varying sizes and through all of that VS have failed to acquire any meaningful number of them. BA has been relatively active in that market but VS has been virtually non-existent while at the same time complaining about BA being so much larger. You can't have it both ways. You can't complain about someone else while at the same time fail at any meaningful expansion while others have succeeded.


Which airline has succeeded in expanding at LHR who hasn't been dominate at their home hub or point of sale?


That's actually an easy question to answer - British Airways. They've built dominance by buying slots.

In Summer 2001 British Airways held 36% of the slots at LHR. Hardly a dominant position. In Summer 2012 it was 44.1% so 16% growth in total slots over 12 years prior to the acquisition of BMI.

The following article has a table that lists out all of the publicly known Heathrow trades over the years prior to 2014 - https://centreforaviation.com/analysis/ ... ain-108646.

So including the BMI transaction 133 slot pairs changed hands between 2001 and 2013 and they are just the ones in the public domain. Imagine, just for a moment, if out of those 133 slot pairs Virgin had secured more than 5.......they could have built in the same dominance. And as you can see from the table none of this includes slots acquired by the likes of EK, EY, QR and CX all of whom have acquired slots over the years and built a sizeable presence at LHR.

Again, you can't complain about someone else succeeding given the systemic failure over multiple years to get out and do deals to expand the slot holding. Ineptitude and incompetence should not be rewarded in preference to anyone else who could make better use of slots and expand competition. Frankly, when the LHR runway is built the best thing for Heathrow would be a meaningful LCC presence to put some pressure on prices.


So BA had over a 1/3 of the slots at Heathrow. I'd call that pretty dominate. Competition is good.
 
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c933103
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 1:36 pm

Wait is it 150 slot per day? By saying it would be 43% of new available slots
It's pointless to attempt winning internet debate.
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hibtastic
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 2:18 pm

SelseyBill wrote:

Look at what Branson did with his railway enterprise 'Virgin Trains'. He negotiated a 'no competition' clause into his rail franchise, and then introduced eye-watering rail fares in what was a 'monopoly' situation. His rail service is very good....but very, very expensive at times. His railway company went on to take on the east coast rail service, but couldn't make it work, because there was so much competition; (oh, the irony). As was, 'Virgin Trains' was a licence to print cash; and as a privately owned company, Branson saw every last penny of profit himself.



Sat on a Virgin train now. The fares are not too bad if you travel outwith the peak periods obviously and the service is very good. I do not believe that there was a "no competition" clause in the West Coast Mainline franchise. Any open access operator could have come along and started a new service provided they met a number of onorous conditions just like they have done on the East Coast Mainline with Hull Trains and Grand Central. Open Access Operators are also likely to appear on the West Coast Mainline soon.

You do know that Virgin Trains on the West Coast Mainline is made up of 51% Virgin, 49% Stagecoach. On the East Coast which you mention, this was 90% Stagecoach, 10% Virgin so SRB has much less say than you think. The East Coast operation has struggled for a number of years. GNER handed it back, National Express handed it back and Virgin (mostly Stagecoach) did the same.

I support VS in their push to get more slots. More competition for BA at LHR will be very good and I find the VS product much better than BA. Would choose them over BA any day of the week.
 
Kato79
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 2:41 pm

goosebayguy wrote:
Virgin are dreaming. My guess is that any newly created slots will be allocated according to current slot percentages. BA will get 55% and VS 10%.


Of course they will only get about that (and it’s probably all they really want) but it’s basic negotiating.
If they started by asking for 10% they’d end up being allotted the square root of f’all.
Last edited by Kato79 on Fri Jun 28, 2019 3:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
skipness1E
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 2:42 pm

GVROB wrote:
Sydscott wrote:
GVROB wrote:

Which airline has succeeded in expanding at LHR who hasn't been dominate at their home hub or point of sale?


That's actually an easy question to answer - British Airways. They've built dominance by buying slots.

In Summer 2001 British Airways held 36% of the slots at LHR. Hardly a dominant position. In Summer 2012 it was 44.1% so 16% growth in total slots over 12 years prior to the acquisition of BMI.

The following article has a table that lists out all of the publicly known Heathrow trades over the years prior to 2014 - https://centreforaviation.com/analysis/ ... ain-108646.

So including the BMI transaction 133 slot pairs changed hands between 2001 and 2013 and they are just the ones in the public domain. Imagine, just for a moment, if out of those 133 slot pairs Virgin had secured more than 5.......they could have built in the same dominance. And as you can see from the table none of this includes slots acquired by the likes of EK, EY, QR and CX all of whom have acquired slots over the years and built a sizeable presence at LHR.

Again, you can't complain about someone else succeeding given the systemic failure over multiple years to get out and do deals to expand the slot holding. Ineptitude and incompetence should not be rewarded in preference to anyone else who could make better use of slots and expand competition. Frankly, when the LHR runway is built the best thing for Heathrow would be a meaningful LCC presence to put some pressure on prices.


So BA had over a 1/3 of the slots at Heathrow. I'd call that pretty dominate. Competition is good.

You literally can't dominate with under a majority.
Consider and compare AF at CDG, LH at FRA/MUC, LX at ZRH, AA at DFW or better still KLM at AMS. That's a dominant carrier, BA at LHR were powerful but not dominant.
 
GVROB
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Fri Jun 28, 2019 3:13 pm

skipness1E wrote:
GVROB wrote:
Sydscott wrote:

That's actually an easy question to answer - British Airways. They've built dominance by buying slots.

In Summer 2001 British Airways held 36% of the slots at LHR. Hardly a dominant position. In Summer 2012 it was 44.1% so 16% growth in total slots over 12 years prior to the acquisition of BMI.

The following article has a table that lists out all of the publicly known Heathrow trades over the years prior to 2014 - https://centreforaviation.com/analysis/ ... ain-108646.

So including the BMI transaction 133 slot pairs changed hands between 2001 and 2013 and they are just the ones in the public domain. Imagine, just for a moment, if out of those 133 slot pairs Virgin had secured more than 5.......they could have built in the same dominance. And as you can see from the table none of this includes slots acquired by the likes of EK, EY, QR and CX all of whom have acquired slots over the years and built a sizeable presence at LHR.

Again, you can't complain about someone else succeeding given the systemic failure over multiple years to get out and do deals to expand the slot holding. Ineptitude and incompetence should not be rewarded in preference to anyone else who could make better use of slots and expand competition. Frankly, when the LHR runway is built the best thing for Heathrow would be a meaningful LCC presence to put some pressure on prices.


So BA had over a 1/3 of the slots at Heathrow. I'd call that pretty dominate. Competition is good.

You literally can't dominate with under a majority.
Consider and compare AF at CDG, LH at FRA/MUC, LX at ZRH, AA at DFW or better still KLM at AMS. That's a dominant carrier, BA at LHR were powerful but not dominant.


Yes you can. When the next biggest carriers have roughly 5% (Lufthansa) & 3% (Virgin Atlantic) share, that's a dominate airline. This thread is about LHR, the other airports are irrelevant to this thread.
 
Ellofiend
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Sat Jun 29, 2019 1:06 am

seansasLCY wrote:
steveinbc wrote:
Interesting stats. That BA have 53% of slots is indeed dominant. But is this any more dominant than LH at FRA or AF at CDG or DL at ATL. Don't even know what the main Chinese carrier is at Beijing but I'm sure it's up there.


According to the Lufthansa presentation yesterday, the Lufthansa Group holds 67% of slots at FRA, 68% at MUC, 63% at ZRH and 59% at VIE. Michael O'Leary from Ryanair always said he'd like to run Lufthansa to see what it's like to control Germany and Austria.


See what it's like to control Germany and Austria? Where have I heard that before?
 
SelseyBill
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Sat Jun 29, 2019 7:14 pm

GVROB wrote:
Do you work for BA?
Nope......

GVROB wrote:
You're incredibly negative in regard to VS.
I'm not negative about VS at all; just their founder. I've flown them many times, l Iike their staff and their product and look forward to every flight with them. Being a successful British entrepreneur, I should like Sir Beardy; but I can't ignore his hypocrisy. He constantly moans about BA's 'dominance' at LHR; (even though they have never held more than 58% of the slots at their home hub); but he was quite prepared to seek complete domination of the London-Scotalnd rail market, and block out any competition in doing it. Complete hypocrisy.

GVROB wrote:
You could make the argument that they weren't in a position to make do with gaining extra slots earlier in their history.
You could, but that would be complete BS. VS could have had BD from his buddy Sir John Bishop for a lot less than the cost of a brand new A330. They were completely in position for a deal with SJB but he got greedy and thought he could get BD for free, and then thought he could turn LH over and get BD for a song, and BA called their bluff and won. IMO, VS doesn't 'deserve' anything, but might perfectly reasonably request they are allowed the same % share that they have now.

GVROB wrote:
More slots = more planes which come at a cost.
They do; but that should not be a barrier, as BA have proved. BA have quietly and successfully transformed short-haul slots into long-haul, and we've seen what they've done with them with lots of new launches and re-launches. I know many LHR staff are quietly delighted with what BA have done with the expanded BD portfolio. The numbers I've seen on LHR-Austin are phenomenal. Imagine what the VS network would look like if they had successfully taken over BD; but they f****d it up.

GVROB wrote:
Fair play for them wanting to give it a go now they can.
No; it isn't 'fairplay'; its very unfair, and they should be widely called-out for it, and not given/offered the slots they 'demand'. Its all about DL and what they want now, and folks should wise-up to it IMO. If you want 'FairPlay', give BA/IAG as a minimum their current % share; work out the average %share that DL has at ATL/ AF @ CDG and KL has @ AMS, and give/sell BA the difference. IMO, BA have done a great job at LHR in the face of some the toughest and widest competition anywhere in aviation; and they should be allowed all the expansion opportunities possible; especially moreso than VS.

GVROB wrote:
Comparisons to Atlanta and American based airlines as a whole are unfair as it's a totally different market.
No; they are perfectly reasonable comparisons to make. I ask again, what would DL's reaction be if BA set up a new 49%-owned business at any future expanded ATL and 'demanded' 150 slots? They'd be laughed at all the way back to Madrid..........
 
SelseyBill
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Sat Jun 29, 2019 7:35 pm

GVROB wrote:
........When the next biggest carriers have roughly 5% (Lufthansa) & 3% (Virgin Atlantic) share, that's a dominant airline.
Dominant compared to who exactly? Certainly not BA's prime European competitors. BA have said many times over the years that they welcome competition as it keeps them sharp, and even openly supported ME3's expansion into Europe when others have whinged. Like BA; I have no problem with extra competition at LHR; I just fail to see why VS thinks they should be 'entitled' to more slots; as if they are the 'default' option. I personally would like to see any extra slots at Heathrow offered to the long list of carriers that serve LGW in lieu of their wish to actually serve LHR, ahead of VS.

GVROB wrote:
This thread is about LHR, the other airports are irrelevant to this thread.
Huh????? It is completely relevant. VS are now firmly part of a JV involving DL/KL/AF. How likely do you think it is that DL/KL/AF would give up slots at their home hubs where they are 'more dominant' than BA, to allow for more competition from IAG/BA. You have to give up this notion that VS are a warm/cuddly/patriotic British carrier with the flying lady waving her flag, and realise that to all intents are purposes, VS should have a 'widget' on their tails and 'Delta-UK' on their sides.
 
Sydscott
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Tue Jul 02, 2019 1:26 am

Ellofiend wrote:
seansasLCY wrote:
steveinbc wrote:
Interesting stats. That BA have 53% of slots is indeed dominant. But is this any more dominant than LH at FRA or AF at CDG or DL at ATL. Don't even know what the main Chinese carrier is at Beijing but I'm sure it's up there.


According to the Lufthansa presentation yesterday, the Lufthansa Group holds 67% of slots at FRA, 68% at MUC, 63% at ZRH and 59% at VIE. Michael O'Leary from Ryanair always said he'd like to run Lufthansa to see what it's like to control Germany and Austria.


See what it's like to control Germany and Austria? Where have I heard that before?


Personally I think it'd be hilarious to see an Irishman control Germany and Austria.............
 
alfa164
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Tue Jul 02, 2019 3:31 am

SelseyBill wrote:
I fail to see on what reasoning VS comes across with this 'sense of entitlement'. VS are a Delta subsidiary. Good luck to Delta; they are a great company, but VS only deserves the same % share of total LHR slots that VS/Skyteam companies currently hold at LHR. Same applies to Star too.


And BA is wholly owned by a company registered in Spain (which itself has 47.5% non-European ownership)... so I guess BA must be an Iberia subsidiary... by your logic.

Right?

OA940 wrote:
Lol Delta UK. This alone is enough to disqualify your entire arguement. So I guess we should call BA ''Qatar UK'' then. Or China Southern ''American Airlines China''. Sorry to burst your bubble but this happens all over the world all the time, so by your logic basically no airline would be allowed slots at local airports. IAG could use some competition on many of its long-haul routes. It's by far not unreasonable

Also when exactly has VS gotten opportunities to significantly scale up operations at LHR to the degree it would actually make a difference? Also if you're gonna whine about DL/AF/KL's presence in Europe you should also look at IAG in MAD, BCN and DUB and LH Group in FRA, MUC, ZRH and VIE. But haters gotta hate somehow I guess


:checkmark:

SelseyBill wrote:
I'm not negative about VS at all; just their founder.


Hopefully, the British government will not base its decisions on one man's obsessive distaste for another man.

SelseyBill wrote:
I ask again, what would DL's reaction be if BA set up a new 49%-owned business at any future expanded ATL and 'demanded' 150 slots? They'd be laughed at all the way back to Madrid..........


There you are right; they would be laughed at all the way back to Madrid - because Atlanta doesn't even have slots. It is not a slot-controlled airport.

I would have expected an "expert" on aviation to know that...

;)
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Boeing74741R
Posts: 1400
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Tue Jul 02, 2019 9:06 am

SelseyBill wrote:
[Look at what Branson did with his railway enterprise 'Virgin Trains'. He negotiated a 'no competition' clause into his rail franchise, and then introduced eye-watering rail fares in what was a 'monopoly' situation.


Wrong. The moderation of competition clause was inserted by the government at the time the original ICWC franchise was let to Virgin, part of that was down to the massive investment that was taking place along the WCML. That clause lapsed at the end of March 2012 when the franchise was initially due to end. There has been over 7 years for others to compete on the WCML if they so wished, but apart from Grand Central's plans to launch Blackpool-London services next year nobody has come forward. You need to ask yourself why nobody has sought to compete and look into the complexities of it all before blaming Branson personally, especially in the years since that clause lapsed. Unlike in aviation, it's not that straightforward for a new start-up to get going.
 
skipness1E
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Re: Virgin Atlantic demands 150 slots at expanded Heathrow airport

Tue Jul 02, 2019 9:56 am

We need competition on the railways in much the same way we need competition between armies. Perhaps the Scottish Army could defend the English on a sort of PFI frachise basis? No cos that's clearly mental, much like any form of real competition on the national rail network.
Maybe we could park this until the first sod is cut?

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