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knope2001
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Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 2:59 pm

https://www.jsonline.com/story/money/20 ... 931377001/

--Midwest Express is partnering with Elite Airways of Portland to launch service
--Initially Midwest Express will be operated by Elite Airways aircraft, crews, maintenance and technical support
--Midwest Express will supply custom service operations, reservations, inflight amenities, etc.
--All public-facing interaction and branding will be Midwest Express (not clear if that includes inflight)
--Elite will work with Midwest Express to complete regulatory and operational requirements for Midwest to obtain its own operating certificate

No further details at this point on timing, routes, aircraft, schedule for Midwest to obtain their own OC, etc.

From all indications the new Midwest Express will essentially be the new Skyway, at least at first, with nonstop business-timed RJ flights to unserved business destinations from Milwaukee. The intention is still to become a "real" airline but it appears they are planning to go "virtual" first to get the brand off the ground.

Elite has flown RJ's under their own brand with a somewhat varied schedule of leisure-focused RJ flights -- some markets fairly durable and others no so much, often to "alternate" or lightly-served airports, often non-daily. I would guess that Midwest Express operated by Elite will be daily business-focused schedules initially to 3-5 cities, not oddball airports and/or spotty schedules.
 
sunking737
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:02 pm

Didn't Elite Airways have operation issues with another carrier, or was it just the bad operations??
"Don't believe it unless its parked on the ramp, or printed in the schedule...SUBJECT TO CHANGE"

I'm a SUNDUCK......Worked for RC & SY @ MSP
 
GSPSPOT
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:07 pm

"RJs".... CRJs or ERJs? Big difference.
Great Lakes, great life.
 
drdisque
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:09 pm

Elite flies CRJ's (both -200's and -700s')

Elite generally runs a pretty good operation. Perhaps you are confusing them with ViaAir.

I hope this doesn't bring them down like how PeopleExpress brought down Vision.

That being said, Elite does have a history of operating as a virtual carrier as CalJet Elite, however, that was a much smaller operation.
 
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Polot
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:11 pm

So this will turn out to be a repeat of Peoplexpress 2.0.

Operating with CRJs really won’t help the image Midwest Express conjures.
 
kiowa
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:25 pm

Looking forward to a good option out of MKE. They have done without for a long time.
 
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TVNWZ
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 3:30 pm

I'll wait and see where and when they fly..devil is the details.
 
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Frontier14
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:01 pm

Do hope this gets off the ground without any major snafus.

Frontier 14
 
32andBelow
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:30 pm

GSPSPOT wrote:
"RJs".... CRJs or ERJs? Big difference.

Maybe it’s RJ 85s!

This strategy never works. And it should be noted elite airways is of Portland Maine.
 
Gulfstream500
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:34 pm

Kind of hoping that it would be Ultimate (especially in a 328, given that Ultimate's 328s are all ex-skyway) that would operate this... Is this a public charter, or similar to how an express/connection version of the big three would operate?
Last edited by Gulfstream500 on Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Can someone please start a wikipedia list of failed startup airlines? I am interested in seeing just how long it would be...
 
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knope2001
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:35 pm

It’s worth reminding that from all indications the new Midwest Express:

--Will not have wide premium seating and meals…the business model which supported those high costs has not worked for a couple of decades.

--Will not serve the big competitive business markets out of Milwaukee like New York, Dallas, Denver, Atlanta, etc. because the competition would squash them like a bug. There’s nothing the new Midwest Express could offer at this point to convince enough people to stop flying their existing preferred carrier.

--Will not serve the big leisure markets out of Milwaukee either. Again, there’s not much they can offer at this point to convince enough people to switch to Midwest. It’s heavily price-conscious and there’s no indication Midwest will become a ULCC.

There’s no reason for Midwest Express to exist in either the big Milwaukee business or leisure markets, unlike when they formed in 1984 and there were zero nonstops to places like Boston, Dallas, Newark, Philadelphia, Orlando, Phoenix, etc. Where an opening exists is in the short/medium hop business segment which nobody serves nonstop but business-timed nonstop flights can get relatively high fares. These markets are all about nonstop flights at business-friendly times, something people will pay good money for when it lets them be more productive, sometimes avoids the need to stay overnight, skips the hassle and vulnerability of connecting itineraries.

Milwaukee has better potential to support 250-450 mi business hops than many peers because geography makes driving more difficult. Lake Michigan blocks a direct route to most of the biggest MKE markets in this category and forces a drive through the length of Chicago. For example MKE-CMH and JAX-MIA are about 330 flying miles. Google Maps currently says the fastest MKE-CMH drive is just over 7 hours, while the fastest JAX-MIA drive is just over 5 hours. That’s a huge difference when considering flying versus driving. And it made Skyway/Midwest Connect successful for years in spite of no premium seating, no premium service, and high fares. Back in the 90's and 2000's my colleagues and I routinely paid $400+ round trip for the 120-mile hop between Milwaukee and Grand Rapids because the drive around the bottom of Lake Michigan through Chicago was so miserable and time-consuming. Another indication of how people are willing to pay to avoid the drive around Chicago -- there's a high-speed ferry (about 2.5 hours) between Milwaukee and western Michigan running half the year, and a one way driver + car from Milwaukee to Muskegon is $223. Certainly the bulk of people put up with the Chicago drive, but there's a fair number of people willing to pay good money to avoid it.

Obviously this could fail miserably, but it’s not replicating the old Midwest Express and it’s not People Express II, Eastern II, etc.
 
Gulfstream500
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:44 pm

knope2001 wrote:
It’s worth reminding that from all indications the new Midwest Express:

--Will not have wide premium seating and meals…the business model which supported those high costs has not worked for a couple of decades.

--Will not serve the big competitive business markets out of Milwaukee like New York, Dallas, Denver, Atlanta, etc. because the competition would squash them like a bug. There’s nothing the new Midwest Express could offer at this point to convince enough people to stop flying their existing preferred carrier.

--Will not serve the big leisure markets out of Milwaukee either. Again, there’s not much they can offer at this point to convince enough people to switch to Midwest. It’s heavily price-conscious and there’s no indication Midwest will become a ULCC.

There’s no reason for Midwest Express to exist in either the big Milwaukee business or leisure markets, unlike when they formed in 1984 and there were zero nonstops to places like Boston, Dallas, Newark, Philadelphia, Orlando, Phoenix, etc. Where an opening exists is in the short/medium hop business segment which nobody serves nonstop but business-timed nonstop flights can get relatively high fares. These markets are all about nonstop flights at business-friendly times, something people will pay good money for when it lets them be more productive, sometimes avoids the need to stay overnight, skips the hassle and vulnerability of connecting itineraries.

Milwaukee has better potential to support 250-450 mi business hops than many peers because geography makes driving more difficult. Lake Michigan blocks a direct route to most of the biggest MKE markets in this category and forces a drive through the length of Chicago. For example MKE-CMH and JAX-MIA are about 330 flying miles. Google Maps currently says the fastest MKE-CMH drive is just over 7 hours, while the fastest JAX-MIA drive is just over 5 hours. That’s a huge difference when considering flying versus driving. And it made Skyway/Midwest Connect successful for years in spite of no premium seating, no premium service, and high fares. Back in the 90's and 2000's my colleagues and I routinely paid $400+ round trip for the 120-mile hop between Milwaukee and Grand Rapids because the drive around the bottom of Lake Michigan through Chicago was so miserable and time-consuming. Another indication of how people are willing to pay to avoid the drive around Chicago -- there's a high-speed ferry (about 2.5 hours) between Milwaukee and western Michigan running half the year, and a one way driver + car from Milwaukee to Muskegon is $223. Certainly the bulk of people put up with the Chicago drive, but there's a fair number of people willing to pay good money to avoid it.

Obviously this could fail miserably, but it’s not replicating the old Midwest Express and it’s not People Express II, Eastern II, etc.


Right now I'm thinking that these will be some of Midwest's routes:

MKE-PIT
MKE-CMH
MKE-IND
MKE-OMA

And as for the fleet goes, it will probably be one CRJ100 or CRJ200.
Can someone please start a wikipedia list of failed startup airlines? I am interested in seeing just how long it would be...
 
SRQLOT
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:46 pm

I wonder if they will continue to fly out of Florida and if yes what does this mean for SRQ?

I bet that Elite crews will be glad to have a more stable work environment.
LO LH CL BA AZ WN UA DL AA B6 NK
WAW KRK FRA LGW FCO ORD MDW LAS DFW ATL RDU BNA BHM BOS DTW FLL MCO RSW TPA SRQ
717 737-300/700/800/900/MAX8 747-400 757-200/300 767-300 787-8 319 320 321 330-300 MD-90 BAE146 CRJ900 Q400 E195 Piper Archer Cessna 152
 
drdisque
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:47 pm

Guess of viable routes:

MKE-CMH
MKE-OMA
MKE-GRR
MKE-CVG
MKE-IND
MKE-MEM

could also do MKE-PWM or TVC in the summer and MKE-SRQ or MLB in the winter if they want a live link to the rest of the network.
 
WayexTDI
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:56 pm

Polot wrote:
So this will turn out to be a repeat of Peoplexpress 2.0.

Operating with CRJs really won’t help the image Midwest Express conjures.

What's incompatible between operating CRJ's and being called Express???
 
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knope2001
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 6:40 pm

https://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/n ... sifQ%3D%3D

Milwaukee Business Journal cites intent to launch by the end of the year if possible, likely about 3 planes to start. Both the CRJ and CR7 are mentioned but no specifics which (or both) will ultimately be used. I'd guess to start it will be one or the other.

Wiki -- which can always be out of date or wrong, of course -- has Elite with:
6 CRJ 50-seats
1 CRJ 16-seats (executive configuration)
4 CR7 70-seats + 3 more to be delivered

If they are funding the first three aircraft out of the existing fleet that's a big chunk of either the CRJ or the CR7 fleet. They do a great deal of charter work so it's possible that they could absorb three aircraft heading to MKE by cutting back on charter contracts, assuming they intend to continue a similar level of scheduled operations in the east as they have been running.
 
UWPAviation
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 7:03 pm

I’m very happy to see my old hometown airline is trying. And I do hope this works.

However I just don’t see the interest in flying to the destinations mentioned above. If anything WN would start service to PIT for instance and they would crush Midwest.
 
lavalampluva
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 7:19 pm

Gulfstream500 wrote:
knope2001 wrote:
It’s worth reminding that from all indications the new Midwest Express:

--Will not have wide premium seating and meals…the business model which supported those high costs has not worked for a couple of decades.

--Will not serve the big competitive business markets out of Milwaukee like New York, Dallas, Denver, Atlanta, etc. because the competition would squash them like a bug. There’s nothing the new Midwest Express could offer at this point to convince enough people to stop flying their existing preferred carrier.

--Will not serve the big leisure markets out of Milwaukee either. Again, there’s not much they can offer at this point to convince enough people to switch to Midwest. It’s heavily price-conscious and there’s no indication Midwest will become a ULCC.

There’s no reason for Midwest Express to exist in either the big Milwaukee business or leisure markets, unlike when they formed in 1984 and there were zero nonstops to places like Boston, Dallas, Newark, Philadelphia, Orlando, Phoenix, etc. Where an opening exists is in the short/medium hop business segment which nobody serves nonstop but business-timed nonstop flights can get relatively high fares. These markets are all about nonstop flights at business-friendly times, something people will pay good money for when it lets them be more productive, sometimes avoids the need to stay overnight, skips the hassle and vulnerability of connecting itineraries.

Milwaukee has better potential to support 250-450 mi business hops than many peers because geography makes driving more difficult. Lake Michigan blocks a direct route to most of the biggest MKE markets in this category and forces a drive through the length of Chicago. For example MKE-CMH and JAX-MIA are about 330 flying miles. Google Maps currently says the fastest MKE-CMH drive is just over 7 hours, while the fastest JAX-MIA drive is just over 5 hours. That’s a huge difference when considering flying versus driving. And it made Skyway/Midwest Connect successful for years in spite of no premium seating, no premium service, and high fares. Back in the 90's and 2000's my colleagues and I routinely paid $400+ round trip for the 120-mile hop between Milwaukee and Grand Rapids because the drive around the bottom of Lake Michigan through Chicago was so miserable and time-consuming. Another indication of how people are willing to pay to avoid the drive around Chicago -- there's a high-speed ferry (about 2.5 hours) between Milwaukee and western Michigan running half the year, and a one way driver + car from Milwaukee to Muskegon is $223. Certainly the bulk of people put up with the Chicago drive, but there's a fair number of people willing to pay good money to avoid it.

Obviously this could fail miserably, but it’s not replicating the old Midwest Express and it’s not People Express II, Eastern II, etc.


Right now I'm thinking that these will be some of Midwest's routes:

MKE-PIT
MKE-CMH
MKE-IND
MKE-OMA

And as for the fleet goes, it will probably be one CRJ100 or CRJ200.

Are not a number of those routes former OneJet routes? Those did not work out too well.
Remind me to send a thank you note to Mr. Boeing.
 
FlyingElvii
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 7:19 pm

GSPSPOT wrote:
"RJs".... CRJs or ERJs? Big difference.

Just guessing, but I would imagine CRJ-700's. And by coinkydink, several 700's just went/are going to the desert soon.g
 
airtran737
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 7:54 pm

Taking bets on how long this reincarnation lasts. I give it four months of actual flight operations before the plug is pulled.
Nice Trip Report!!! Great Pics, thanks for posting!!!! B747Forever
 
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millionsofmiles
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 7:55 pm

Elite really worked well for Caljet. LOL
 
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mke717spotter
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:24 pm

I wonder if this will actually be the livery:
Image

knope2001 wrote:
It’s worth reminding that from all indications the new Midwest Express:

--Will not have wide premium seating and meals…the business model which supported those high costs has not worked for a couple of decades.

Well if they end up using CR7s, couldn't they put a few rows of premium seating at the front of the plane? UA has 6 First Class and 12 Economy Plus seats on their CR7s. I guess they're hoping that cookies, the Midwest name, and unique nonstops to places like GRR, OMA, etc. will be enough to set them apart from other airlines. No surprise fees, maybe?
Will you watch the Cleveland Browns and the Detroit Lions on Sunday? Only if coach Eric Mangini resigned after a loss.
 
GSPSPOT
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:33 pm

FlyingElvii wrote:
GSPSPOT wrote:
"RJs".... CRJs or ERJs? Big difference.

Just guessing, but I would imagine CRJ-700's. And by coinkydink, several 700's just went/are going to the desert soon.g

CR7 I can get a little excited about. CR2s not so much.
Great Lakes, great life.
 
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knope2001
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:38 pm

UWPAviation wrote:
I’m very happy to see my old hometown airline is trying. And I do hope this works.

However I just don’t see the interest in flying to the destinations mentioned above. If anything WN would start service to PIT for instance and they would crush Midwest.


Most of the routes Midwest Express is likely to target, especially at first, are not large enough for reasonable service by Southwest. That's especially true given the tight fleet with MAX out for perhaps 6+ months. If Southwest *would*, for example, overlay MKE-PIT with 737 Midwest would not be able to compete with much higher costs. But that's not likely to happen.

It's possible, of course that someone with RJ's could come in and overlay what Midwest is planning to do in Milwaukee. And that would be trouble. But that's not terribly likely because there's no good reason for them to do so. There are limited numbers of RJ's contractually allowed and dedicating them to MKE would add nothing for their network -- there are must better places to use them. Airlines are sometimes stupidly overcompetitive but these markets don't represent much revenue for any one airline because so many people drive today, or drive to O'Hare for a nonstop, and the rest who fly a connection out of MKE split their business between various carriers.

lavalampluva wrote:
Are not a number of those routes former OneJet routes? Those did not work out too well.


OneJet did indeed serve MKE-PIT/CMH/OMA but lack of traffic wasn't an issue in their failure. These routes were run with business jets, a business plan whose current viability was never vaguely demonstrated. And it's become increasingly apparent that the business was run as a fantasy house of cards with no real accountability business integrity or even basic business sense. They didn't even make a reasonable attempt at running a viable business. Joy rides for friends, family and investors to Florida but not paying passenger fees to the government...ever...even when they had money. At shutdown they were in arrears to the government back to Day 1 if I recall correctly. That kind of crap suggests no clue / no accountability when it came to running a business. But unfortunately it makes it just a notch harder for someone who actually does have a viable business plan to succeed because investors have been burned by OneJet and observers/analysts pose questions just like this -- why will you succeed where OneJet failed?
 
FlyingElvii
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Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2017 10:53 pm

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:49 pm

knope2001 wrote:
UWPAviation wrote:
I’m very happy to see my old hometown airline is trying. And I do hope this works.

However I just don’t see the interest in flying to the destinations mentioned above. If anything WN would start service to PIT for instance and they would crush Midwest.


Most of the routes Midwest Express is likely to target, especially at first, are not large enough for reasonable service by Southwest. That's especially true given the tight fleet with MAX out for perhaps 6+ months. If Southwest *would*, for example, overlay MKE-PIT with 737 Midwest would not be able to compete with much higher costs. But that's not likely to happen.

It's possible, of course that someone with RJ's could come in and overlay what Midwest is planning to do in Milwaukee. And that would be trouble. But that's not terribly likely because there's no good reason for them to do so. There are limited numbers of RJ's contractually allowed and dedicating them to MKE would add nothing for their network -- there are must better places to use them. Airlines are sometimes stupidly overcompetitive but these markets don't represent much revenue for any one airline because so many people drive today, or drive to O'Hare for a nonstop, and the rest who fly a connection out of MKE split their business between various carriers.

lavalampluva wrote:
Are not a number of those routes former OneJet routes? Those did not work out too well.


OneJet did indeed serve MKE-PIT/CMH/OMA but lack of traffic wasn't an issue in their failure. These routes were run with business jets, a business plan whose current viability was never vaguely demonstrated. And it's become increasingly apparent that the business was run as a fantasy house of cards with no real accountability business integrity or even basic business sense. They didn't even make a reasonable attempt at running a viable business. Joy rides for friends, family and investors to Florida but not paying passenger fees to the government...ever...even when they had money. At shutdown they were in arrears to the government back to Day 1 if I recall correctly. That kind of crap suggests no clue / no accountability when it came to running a business. But unfortunately it makes it just a notch harder for someone who actually does have a viable business plan to succeed because investors have been burned by OneJet and observers/analysts pose questions just like this -- why will you succeed where OneJet failed?


I would expect the New Midwest to run much of the same routes as the old started in, ie., DLH,GRB,OMA, DSM, RST to MKE then on to the east coast. 5 aircraft to support a three plane operation, to start, 2 RT's or 8 segments a day. Yes, UA, AA, and DL could bury them on price, but just having to avoid ORD or MSP can gain a premium, especially with better service levels. (Even a small touch, like fresh-baked cookies before touchdown). Before the change to "Midwest" a good part of YX's premium yield came from people trying to get home to Chicago, when ORD was a disaster. Walkups would fill the planes in minutes during thundestorm season, or even a light winter snow.
 
commpilot
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 9:12 pm

Who conned people to invest in this failure before it began? The people who are in charge of this pipe dream have zero clue about what the airline industry is today and what lessons were learned in the collapse of the real Midwest many years ago. This being a virtual airline is the same way the other Midwest ended. Who thinks a fleet of old CRJs is going to attract people to fly them unless they low balled some corporate contracts but who would invest annual flying money with a company who has zero backing.
 
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illinoisman
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 9:19 pm

Polot wrote:
Operating with CRJs really won’t help the image Midwest Express conjures.

Every time I fly, I think of how nice the old YX was. However, airline startups are reliably unreliable. Plus, CRJs do not fly long distances and by in large are very uncomfortable. Given the current competition from WN and DL at MKE I doubt you are ever going to get YX back in the air with 5 CRJs and realistically compete.
 
uconn99
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 9:19 pm

Would love to see them fly MKE-BDL. Does anyone know the O&D between the two? Midwest served BDL for years and F9 for a bit after they went away.
 
Ionosphere
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 10:20 pm

Chautauqua flew the ERJ-135/145 as Midwest Connect from MKE to BNA, PIT, PHL, EWR, ATL, OMA, STL, MSN, GRB, ATW, MSP, IND, CMH, CLE, DAY. I could see some of these routes coming back.
 
globalflyer
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 10:59 pm

Wow... this just has disaster written all over it.
Landing on every Continent almost on an annual basis!
 
KCaviator
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 11:22 pm

Ionosphere wrote:
Chautauqua flew the ERJ-135/145 as Midwest Connect from MKE to BNA, PIT, PHL, EWR, ATL, OMA, STL, MSN, GRB, ATW, MSP, IND, CMH, CLE, DAY. I could see some of these routes coming back.


MKE-DAY, wow, what a time to be alive.
 
rj777
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 11:32 pm

I would assume that Midwest would probably use D gates since C is pretty much all WN and UA.
 
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spinkid
Posts: 1868
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Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Tue Aug 06, 2019 11:41 pm

Will Elite rebrand their Norhteast U.S. to Florida and Bahamas flights. They could add flights from any of those cities to their Sun destinations, even 1x or 2x weekly to rotate aircraft in.
 
Gulfstream500
Posts: 346
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:30 am

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 12:36 am

lavalampluva wrote:
Gulfstream500 wrote:
knope2001 wrote:
It’s worth reminding that from all indications the new Midwest Express:

--Will not have wide premium seating and meals…the business model which supported those high costs has not worked for a couple of decades.

--Will not serve the big competitive business markets out of Milwaukee like New York, Dallas, Denver, Atlanta, etc. because the competition would squash them like a bug. There’s nothing the new Midwest Express could offer at this point to convince enough people to stop flying their existing preferred carrier.

--Will not serve the big leisure markets out of Milwaukee either. Again, there’s not much they can offer at this point to convince enough people to switch to Midwest. It’s heavily price-conscious and there’s no indication Midwest will become a ULCC.

There’s no reason for Midwest Express to exist in either the big Milwaukee business or leisure markets, unlike when they formed in 1984 and there were zero nonstops to places like Boston, Dallas, Newark, Philadelphia, Orlando, Phoenix, etc. Where an opening exists is in the short/medium hop business segment which nobody serves nonstop but business-timed nonstop flights can get relatively high fares. These markets are all about nonstop flights at business-friendly times, something people will pay good money for when it lets them be more productive, sometimes avoids the need to stay overnight, skips the hassle and vulnerability of connecting itineraries.

Milwaukee has better potential to support 250-450 mi business hops than many peers because geography makes driving more difficult. Lake Michigan blocks a direct route to most of the biggest MKE markets in this category and forces a drive through the length of Chicago. For example MKE-CMH and JAX-MIA are about 330 flying miles. Google Maps currently says the fastest MKE-CMH drive is just over 7 hours, while the fastest JAX-MIA drive is just over 5 hours. That’s a huge difference when considering flying versus driving. And it made Skyway/Midwest Connect successful for years in spite of no premium seating, no premium service, and high fares. Back in the 90's and 2000's my colleagues and I routinely paid $400+ round trip for the 120-mile hop between Milwaukee and Grand Rapids because the drive around the bottom of Lake Michigan through Chicago was so miserable and time-consuming. Another indication of how people are willing to pay to avoid the drive around Chicago -- there's a high-speed ferry (about 2.5 hours) between Milwaukee and western Michigan running half the year, and a one way driver + car from Milwaukee to Muskegon is $223. Certainly the bulk of people put up with the Chicago drive, but there's a fair number of people willing to pay good money to avoid it.

Obviously this could fail miserably, but it’s not replicating the old Midwest Express and it’s not People Express II, Eastern II, etc.


Right now I'm thinking that these will be some of Midwest's routes:

MKE-PIT
MKE-CMH
MKE-IND
MKE-OMA

And as for the fleet goes, it will probably be one CRJ100 or CRJ200.

Are not a number of those routes former OneJet routes? Those did not work out too well.


No part of flying these routes is economical when it is in a $2000/hour 7 seat business jet.

spinkid wrote:
Will Elite rebrand their Norhteast U.S. to Florida and Bahamas flights. They could add flights from any of those cities to their Sun destinations, even 1x or 2x weekly to rotate aircraft in.


No. Elite is not being bought out by Midwest, and will remain an independent carrier.

rj777 wrote:
I would assume that Midwest would probably use D gates since C is pretty much all WN and UA.


D is where OneJet flew from, so this will probably be true for Midwest. In fact, they’ll probably use the same gate!

uconn99 wrote:
Would love to see them fly MKE-BDL. Does anyone know the O&D between the two? Midwest served BDL for years and F9 for a bit after they went away.


OneJet once did one stop, no plane change between the two cities.

commpilot wrote:
Who conned people to invest in this failure before it began? The people who are in charge of this pipe dream have zero clue about what the airline industry is today and what lessons were learned in the collapse of the real Midwest many years ago. This being a virtual airline is the same way the other Midwest ended. Who thinks a fleet of old CRJs is going to attract people to fly them unless they low balled some corporate contracts but who would invest annual flying money with a company who has zero backing.


Seems to have worked for Elite and Contour!
Can someone please start a wikipedia list of failed startup airlines? I am interested in seeing just how long it would be...
 
cledaybuck
Posts: 1518
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 6:07 pm

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 1:15 am

KCaviator wrote:
Ionosphere wrote:
Chautauqua flew the ERJ-135/145 as Midwest Connect from MKE to BNA, PIT, PHL, EWR, ATL, OMA, STL, MSN, GRB, ATW, MSP, IND, CMH, CLE, DAY. I could see some of these routes coming back.


MKE-DAY, wow, what a time to be alive.

You were alive. It was only 9 years ago.
As we celebrate mediocrity, all the boys upstairs want to see, how much you'll pay for what you used to get for free.
 
rj777
Posts: 1793
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2000 1:47 am

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 1:48 am

D is where OneJet flew from, so this will probably be true for Midwest. In fact, they’ll probably use the same gate!

I wouldn't be surprised if they also used OneJet's ticket counter space as well!
 
n7371f
Posts: 1559
Joined: Fri Jul 04, 2008 3:54 pm

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 2:52 am

I miss the original Midwest Express but this has 3 month shelf-life written all over it.
 
Jshank83
Posts: 2834
Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2016 2:23 pm

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 4:21 am

Haven’t seen MCI mentioned. That could be another one.
 
rj777
Posts: 1793
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2000 1:47 am

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 5:13 am

My guess is that once they get their own operating certificate, they'll probably get some A220's and 175E2's
 
n7371f
Posts: 1559
Joined: Fri Jul 04, 2008 3:54 pm

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 6:29 am

One more thing...unfortunately the paint job, if that's really it, looks like Greg drew it up on his paint app on his laptop. That said, Republic likely still owns all the trademarks and that makes a livery job more difficult. Then again, when Frontier relaunched in 1993 (first flights in 1994) Continental had surrendered the Frontier name and Saul Bass stylized 'F' and paint job (they decided to use the name but not the logo or colors).
 
Dominion301
Posts: 2215
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2016 1:48 pm

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 1:29 pm

drdisque wrote:
Guess of viable routes:

MKE-CMH
MKE-OMA
MKE-GRR
MKE-CVG
MKE-IND
MKE-MEM

could also do MKE-PWM or TVC in the summer and MKE-SRQ or MLB in the winter if they want a live link to the rest of the network.


Seems pretty sensible, with SRQ/MLB on weekends. You could build a network with this to time for connections.
 
ILNFlyer
Posts: 375
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 8:34 pm

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 3:07 pm

God luck with that.
 
Gulfstream500
Posts: 346
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:30 am

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 4:17 pm

Dominion301 wrote:
drdisque wrote:
Guess of viable routes:

MKE-CMH
MKE-OMA
MKE-GRR
MKE-CVG
MKE-IND
MKE-MEM

could also do MKE-PWM or TVC in the summer and MKE-SRQ or MLB in the winter if they want a live link to the rest of the network.


Seems pretty sensible, with SRQ/MLB on weekends. You could build a network with this to time for connections.


I only see Elite flying the MLB/SRQ-MKE route. They’ll probably codeshare if it happens.
Can someone please start a wikipedia list of failed startup airlines? I am interested in seeing just how long it would be...
 
drdisque
Posts: 1083
Joined: Mon Mar 26, 2007 9:57 am

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 4:24 pm

I have a feeling that Midwest flights will be sold on Elite's 7Q code, at least initially. So you can't exactly codeshare with yourself ;)
 
Gulfstream500
Posts: 346
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:30 am

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 4:30 pm

drdisque wrote:
I have a feeling that Midwest flights will be sold on Elite's 7Q code, at least initially. So you can't exactly codeshare with yourself ;)


The brand will probably be Elite if SRQ/MLB-MKE happens.
Can someone please start a wikipedia list of failed startup airlines? I am interested in seeing just how long it would be...
 
KlimaBXsst
Posts: 340
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2019 4:14 pm

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 5:44 pm

Hope they do something unique to differentiate themselves and produce higher yields.

50 seat jets in this day and age are challenging as is retaining aircrew employees.

So far, unless Midwest offers something revolutionary, one has to ask why?
Aesthetically the A 340 got it right!
 
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knope2001
Topic Author
Posts: 2931
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2005 5:54 am

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Wed Aug 07, 2019 6:46 pm

KlimaBXsst wrote:
Hope they do something unique to differentiate themselves and produce higher yields.

50 seat jets in this day and age are challenging as is retaining aircrew employees.

So far, unless Midwest offers something revolutionary, one has to ask why?


It's all about nonstop service from MKE to key destinations roughly 250-450 miles away with business-friendly schedules. These routes routinely got business fares of $200+ one way back when they were served nonstop. I personally had a lot of central Ohio clients around 10 years back and paid $524 round trip again and again and again. Businesses like my employer were willing to pay those fares to help their employees avoid long drives or connecting flight intineraries so we could be more efficient, more productive, have less stress and fatigue, have fewer hotel nights, have fewer travel snafus, etc. Even with the loss of nonstop flights there are still hundreds of people taking connecting flights each week in markets like MKE-CMH paying around $350-$450 round trip for the 330-mile hop. And countless more driving down to O'Hare for a nonstop or driving the entire way. As I mentioned in a previous email because of Lake Michigan requiring an out-of-the-way drive through the length of metro Chicago the drive MKE-CMH is about 7 hours, notably longer if you hit bad Chicago traffic. These are the markets they are going after, hopefully with razor-sharp focus on being as useful to business travelers as possible.

That focus is exactly what made the original Midwest Express and their Skyway subsidiary so successful early on -- they served business travel demand in markets with little or no nonstop service. Today those same large business markets have decent nonstop service flown by airlines who will fight to defend them. So the new Midwest is not going to Boston and Dallas and Atlanta and Denver. The opening is the shorter business routes like Columbus, and that's what they are targeting. These routes are mostly too small for someone like Southwest and don't hold any real strategic importance to anybody to invest resources on. So nobody flies them today, and that's what Midwest aims to do.
 
commpilot
Posts: 112
Joined: Sat Feb 09, 2008 5:21 pm

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Thu Aug 08, 2019 3:31 pm

Gulfstream500 wrote:
lavalampluva wrote:
Gulfstream500 wrote:



Seems to have worked for Elite and Contour!


Elite has a very small foot print for a unique set of city pairs that will pay for direct service along the east coast. Their CalJet branded operation failed.

Contour isn't anything other than a recent operation set up by Corporate Flight Management (Once operated as Corporate Air flying Jetstreams out of STL) to take in EAS funds. Over the years CFM has run many shaddy DBA operations that never lasted long than free government money.

Those aren't a great rebuttal to how this time branding Midwest Express will work. There is a reason the current airlines don't fly those secondary markets non-stop from MKE, they can't make money.
 
User avatar
knope2001
Topic Author
Posts: 2931
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2005 5:54 am

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Thu Aug 08, 2019 4:27 pm

With three planes I could see them doing 20 weekday segments, 3x each to PIT and CMH and 2x each to IND and OMA. This schedule gives no less than a 7.5 hours day in every city pair, either direction (except OMA-MKE is 6.0 hours in Milwaukee). So it works pretty well for business travelers originating in any city. Having 3x to PIT and CMH might be a notch aggressive are they are the biggest cities pairs and the best suited to pick up some (high-ish fare) leisure demand. Plus the mid-day flight in these markets gives more schedule flexibility. As desirable as nonstops are, if you have to wait 6 hours for it after you leave the client you’re probably booking a connecting flight home on somebody else to get home sooner.

These flows should work operationally. There are a few 25 minute turns (not unreasonable for an RJ with a few dozen business travelers) but most are 30+ minutes with several larger ones allowing for schedule recovery, crew changes and aircraft swaps. I'm assuming all MKE-based crews though I’m a little uncertain if the 10-ish hour overnights in PIT and CMH are enough crew rest time to only rarely delay the originator the next morning. If not, then either crews would need rotation (or to be based) in PIT and CMH or the overall schedule would need to be compressed a bit. But you don’t want to compress too much or the schedule becomes less useful for business travelers. This thing lives and dies by being just too convenient for business travelers to pass up even though they are losing their Skymiles.

Anyway, here’s what they might potentially do with three aircraft on weekdays.
0645 PIT
0705 MKE
0735 MKE
0940 CMH
1240 CMH
1250 MKE
1420 MKE
1625 CMH
1710 CMH
1720 MKE
1755 MKE
1915 OMA
1940 OMA
2055 MKE

0650 CMH
0700 MKE
0730 MKE
0945 PIT
1230 PIT
1250 MKE
1600 MKE
1800 IND
1825 IND
1825 MKE
1855 MKE
2100 CMH

0600 MKE
0800 IND
0825 IND
0825 MKE
0855 MKE
1015 OMA
1040 OMA
1155 MKE
1415 MKE
1630 PIT
1715 PIT
1735 MKE
1825 MKE
2040 PIT

Condensed Schedules
to Columbus …………... from Columbus
0735 … 0940 …………… 0650 … 0700
1420 … 1625 …………… 1240 … 1250
1855 … 2100 …………… 1710 … 1720
to Indianapolis ………… from Indianapolis
0600 … 0800 …………… 0825 … 0825
1600 … 1800 …………… 1825 … 1825
to Omaha …………........ from Omaha
0855 … 1015 …………… 1040 … 1155
1755 … 1915 …………… 1940 … 2055
to Pittsburgh …………... from Pittsburgh
0730 … 0945 …………… 0645 … 0705
1415 … 1630 …………… 1230 … 1250
1825 … 2040 …………… 1715 … 1735


Hours available for day trip for MKE-originating passengers
7:30 Columbus
10:25 Indianapolis
9:25 Omaha
7:30 Pittsburgh

Hours available in MKE for day trips originating at oustations
7:20 or 11:55 Columbus
7:35 Indianapolis
6:00 Omaha
7:20 or 11:30 Pittsburgh
 
jetmatt777
Posts: 3879
Joined: Sun Jun 26, 2005 2:16 am

Re: Midwest Express Partnering with Elite for Launch

Thu Aug 08, 2019 4:37 pm

I think it’s a good idea to run your new airline as a virtual airline for the initial startup period.

We have seen time and time again startup airlines expend vast amounts of capital and years of paperwork filing only to operate for 2 months and shut down. With CPA flying they can use that startup capital to “operate” much sooner and generate revenue.
Lighten up while you still can, don't even try to understand, just find a place to make your stand and take it easy

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