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Yflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Wed Mar 04, 2020 1:10 am

smflyer wrote:
If I remember correctly, AA was operating out of the new terminal B from opening in 2011 to about late 2015/early 2016 when it merged with US airways and moved over to terminal A. I believe AA operated out gate B11 adjacent to AS as their only destination was DFW 4x daily on MD88s.


You do remember correctly about them using Terminal B, although they also offered flights to LAX on the ERJ-140 (later replaced with SkyWest CRJs). I remember because my very first flight out of the then-new terminal was AA Eagle to LAX (connecting onward to SYD on Qantas). I was kind of excited to get to use the shiny new terminal, since I usually end up flying on UA or DL, both of which were in A.
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sun Mar 08, 2020 1:06 pm

B6 JFK-SMF JUN 1.0>1.4[1.0] JUL 1.0>1.5[1.0] AUG 1.0>1.5[1.0]

JetBlue going 2x daily on Mo/We/Fr starting in June on A320! Not the morning departure that we all wanted, but still a great addition!
JFK departure at 8:30AM
SMF departure at 1:05PM

Redeye will remain with A321 equipment.
 
2travel2know2
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sun Mar 08, 2020 2:10 pm

LON - SMF / Napa Valley anyone interested?
Like BA/VS LGW-SMF ?
I'm not on CM's payroll.
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sun Mar 08, 2020 3:25 pm

2travel2know2 wrote:
LON - SMF / Napa Valley anyone interested?
Like BA/VS LGW-SMF ?


I wish, but unlikely due to the relatively low premium demand in/out of SMF. I think SMF will eventually get service, but not for another 10 years or if a fuel efficient airliner smaller than 787 comes to service. However, if BA were to move the 787-8 fleet over to Gatwick once those aircraft become "old" or not big enough for a slot controlled airport like Heathrow, then we can possibly see service.

The close proximity of SFO means an airliner can't right-price the market since passengers will undoubtedly price compare flights from both airports and only fly out of SMF if it isn't significantly more expensive than SFO flights. For example, look at PIT that has daily BA 787 service. That works well for BA in a market somewhat smaller than SMF due to the fact that there is no competing airport nearby with similar service. You'd have to drive 5 hrs to PHL. PIT works because BA can charge more in economy service to make up the lower revenue from smaller premium demand in that market.
 
williaminsd
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sun Mar 08, 2020 7:17 pm

Greetings all,

Wow, a lot of good things have happened since I last checked in for Sacramento International.

Best of all is that SMF continues to grow at a robust pace with new flights and markets as a result.

Where to start…

How about with one of SMF’s great under-told stories: International traffic.

SMF now serves five international airports: Vancouver, Guadalajara, Cabo, Leon, Morelia. Just a few years ago, it served one.

Highlights include new, 2x/week service to Morelia on Volaris and 2x/day seasonal to Vancouver on Air Canada.

The timing for AC’s new flight is vastly superior to the present schedule. Out early in the morning, then return in evening to RON for the next flight. Perfect for business travelers and takes advantage of many more international connections. I expect this schedule to spur more traffic than otherwise might be forecast. Don’t be too surprised if this flight gets extended past September. I wonder if this would have happened earlier, but AC needed for the gate refurbishment to get completed before there was room in the morning, when Terminal A is bursting at the seams.

Also of note is AeroMexico up nearly 25% in January... why? AM is running GDL 3x/week through June, when it returns to daily service. What accounts for the significant AeroMexico growth?

After last year’s spectacular international growth of 30%, January traffic tapered off to about 10% growth, but that’s only about 7% off January 2019. What does that mean for 2020? I would have thought about a 10-15% (from the 30%) decrease overall. But with the new Volaris and AC flights, maybe the hit’s not that hard. Regardless, even a 20% international growth rate would be outstanding and projects out to a total count of over 400,000 international pax (enplanements and deplanements) for SMF in 2020. Would that be enough to get SMF into the top 40 international gateways? It’s at #42 now. I’d say it looks good.

Domestically, have to start with today’s news that JetBlue is adding a daytime flight to JFK 3x/week starting in June. SMF has been waiting for, well, forever for a daytime flight to JFK. (Longtime airport followers will recall Delta had actually scheduled a daytime flight years ago, but it was cancelled before it ever flew due to 9/11.)

This is just fabulous news. Also, it departs within an hour of a presently scheduled B6 flight to LGB, so the LGB drawdown may be playing a role here as well.

By far though it’s the terrific performance of the present redeye that accounts for this add. As others have noted, the SMF-JFK flight is one of B6’s best performers.

Also note that the early afternoon departure is well-timed for the Boutique arrival from Merced. I know there is no agreement between the two, but to make the connection, a passenger with a carry-on literally just has to walk a few feet between gates to make the flight. It may very well be the easiest way for travelers from Merced to fly to the Big Apple. It is also pretty well-timed for a connection on Contour from Santa Barbara. Three hours is a bit long, but beats the reliability issues out of SFO. Maybe Contour sees the potential here and will adjust its schedule a bit.

Frontier must be doing well and extending/going daily with both Denver and Vegas.

Should the Max issues ever get resolved, Southwest will undoubtedly start service to BNA, MCI, SAT, and maybe go 2x/day to St. Louis, given that the LF here has rarely dropped below 90%.

Personally of course, I’m delighted that Alaska is returning to 4x/day to San Diego. I don’t know what bonehead in Alaska planning thought SMF-SAN, with no premium offered on the competition, was a good place to cut, but I’m glad they realized the error of their ways and got it back to a minimal acceptable level for the business traveler. Just a side note here, even when business takes me to Reno, I often still fly into SMF. Fares are often $300 cheaper, sometimes more. And, since Alaska no longer has a tenable connection for SAN-RNO, I fly AA/UA/SW when I must take a direct flight (often due to wx). I also know I am not the only passenger who does this itinerary for business travel to Reno as many of us have become acquaintances waiting (and waiting) for the rental car shuttle at SMF.

I am completely intrigued by the Alaska agreement with AA and with it joining OneWorld. I am actually on-board with those like smfyler who think it could result in American moving to Terminal B. I realize that there are lease and operational considerations, none of which I have any idea about. But on the surface, it makes a lot of sense.

Moving Spirit, Frontier and Sun Country frees at least one gate (B11) for American use. Moving American to Term B frees at least two gates in the stubby leg of Term A for the low-cost carriers’ more sporadic service. This move also makes B22 (presently used by Frontier) fully available to Southwest to better accommodate their goal of (for now) hitting 100 departures/day out of SMF.

Add the international gates (B10 & B8), which are most used for Mexico late-night, and you have six gates that Alaska/American could use to capitalize on their new agreement. Even B4 is only used for five flights a day between Hawaiian and Contour, so maybe you have seven gates. Work something out with JetBlue at B6 (I see what you did there SMF…), there’s eight gates with no additional build, and makes adding four gates on that side of the concourse a natural for the much-discussed and much-needed expansion.

This agreement could mean that American, and not Delta, starts a morning daily to JFK (Jetblue’s announcement notwithstanding) and could lead to even more intra-state flights from Boutique and Contour, especially given Boutique’s agreement with AA.

I also think that this OneWorld membership increases the opportunity for BA serving SMF to London in 2021/2022. Concourse B has the international gates and the heavy gates for a 787. SMF serves the only Top-30 metropolitan area without direct service to Europe. Plus, as noted, there are existing opportunities for additional feed in what for many, even with an early evening departure, would be the easiest connection to Europe available.

I know smflyer has his doubts, and I respect his opinion, but as noted on another thread, United looks to include SMF on its Max10 upgrades to EWR. These upgrades add more business and premium service, so maybe O&D demand for up-front seats is better than we might think.

Of course, the dark cloud hanging over all of this is the impact of the Corona Virus. Should this continue to impact business travel, all bets are off. Anecdotally, I’ve seen little impact. My travels so far this year are limited to domestic locations including my home airport of SAN, SMF, SFO, SJC, RNO, STS, MRY, SBP and, this week, FAT. Only real hot spot there is SFO, but even with that caveat, airports are all bustling and flights are full. It's a great time to be a flying fanatic!

As always, looking forward to all the comments on this thread. Thanks to all who participate...
In the land of lies, telling the truth is a crime...
 
strfyr51
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Re: SMF/Sacramento - 2020

Mon Mar 09, 2020 1:57 am

williaminsd wrote:
jplatts wrote:
williaminsd wrote:
Southwest to BNA and the return of MCO. Maybe MCI…


I agree about WN possibly re-adding SMF-BNA, SMF-MCO, and SMF-MCI nonstop service. There are also a few other nonstop routes that could get added by WN out of SMF such as SMF-ATL, SMF-FLL, SMF-KOA, and SMF-SAT.


I had forgotten that SMF-BNA had been served last June. SAT's a good call too. I had thought we'd see it in 2018. The MAX dynamic will be interesting. As these brand new birds return to service en masse, Southwest planners will be equally eager to place them quickly and start seeing a return. It makes sense that SMF is a beneficiary, especially as it is looking at 100+ departures/day Summer 2020. So you could be spot-on with your other routes as well.

Shortly after my OP, SMF released November figures. As expected, SMF again served over a million passengers to break 12mm for the year. At this point, 13,000,000 for the year is a certainty. While yoy growth is only 2.2%, dolphinflyer explained in the old thread that due to some unique calendar issues this year, this paltry growth rate should not cause too much concern and that we can expect to see a stronger bump in December as a result.

I've heard the same reasoning from officials at my hometown airport, SAN, and it seems legit.

One item of note (to me) with November's figures, they show Delta Airlines has quietly increased enplanements by 18% for the year over 2018. I know the new Detroit service accounts for part of that, but they seem to be making inroads in the Sacramento market.

International traffic continues to grow at a brisk >30% pace. Could SMF become a top 40 international airport in 2020? With only two spots to go and at a 30% clip, might even make it in 2019.

Also - brought to my attention that SMF had FOUR new airlines start in 2019, not merely three as Spirit Airlines began service in June.

2019 was yet another great year at SMF. It will need between 7-8% increase to crack 14mm in 2020. Even by just "maturing" existing routes and SW going to 100+ departures/day, that seems eminently possible.

with WN's build up at DEN? I would think they might funnel passengers through there before all the eastern stations talked about here. .
Southwest had a strategic reason for a hub the likes of Denver. And? I'd bet it was not just to Bypass it...
 
sprxUSA
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Mon Mar 09, 2020 4:53 am

LOL no one in SBA area is going to fly via SMF to NYC when going to/thru LAX is about as quick/slow and many many many more options.
Gem State Airlines..."we have a gem of an airline"
 
williaminsd
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Mon Mar 09, 2020 11:38 am

sprxUSA wrote:
LOL no one in SBA area is going to fly via SMF to NYC when going to/thru LAX is about as quick/slow and many many many more options.


You may be right, and thank you for the insight, but I've never heard the word "quick" used when describing either going to or through LAX (or any pleasantry for that matter). Enjoy your day.
In the land of lies, telling the truth is a crime...
 
sprxUSA
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Mon Mar 09, 2020 1:20 pm

Lol yeah quick perhaps optimistic. I was comparing time to/thru LAX as opposed to flying to SMF, then after to another flight. Most in SBA are probably indoctrinated to go via LA and wouldn't look up this SMF option. As an odd airline/route filter, I would certainly try it.

Side note, I miss the old commuter terminal there. Was so interesting to see the wide variety of carriers and colors that came and went.
Gem State Airlines..."we have a gem of an airline"
 
williaminsd
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Mon Mar 09, 2020 3:26 pm

sprxUSA wrote:
Lol yeah quick perhaps optimistic. I was comparing time to/thru LAX as opposed to flying to SMF, then after to another flight. Most in SBA are probably indoctrinated to go via LA and wouldn't look up this SMF option. As an odd airline/route filter, I would certainly try it.

Side note, I miss the old commuter terminal there. Was so interesting to see the wide variety of carriers and colors that came and went.


It would definitely need a nudge from the airline as you are right in that no one in SBA would think of that routing organically. I don't know enough about Contour, but I don't believe they have any agreements with any major carrier. I wonder if that simply isn't part of its business model or if they haven't found the right partner.

If they are open to it, JetBlue might be ideal. No need to change existing route structure in west. Could feed pax through Vegas, Oakland and SMF. It's more difficult to find a good match in the east. Similar product and passenger experience though.

Does JetBlue have any agreements?

Anyway, just thinking out loud...
In the land of lies, telling the truth is a crime...
 
Yflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Mon Mar 09, 2020 5:33 pm

williaminsd wrote:
Domestically, have to start with today’s news that JetBlue is adding a daytime flight to JFK 3x/week starting in June. SMF has been waiting for, well, forever for a daytime flight to JFK. (Longtime airport followers will recall Delta had actually scheduled a daytime flight years ago, but it was cancelled before it ever flew due to 9/11.)


If I remember correctly didn't JetBlue briefly offer a daytime flight from SMF to JFK circa 2007 or so? I just remember a coworker had booked that flight for a trip to New York only to have them drop the flight before his travel date. He was pissed that JetBlue "canceled" his flight (he believed they "canceled it because it wasn't full") and rebooked him on the redeye, because he specifically booked the daytime flight because he hates redeyes. He swore he would never fly JetBlue again because of that. I don't recall if they dropped the daytime flight because it wasn't performing well, or if it was a response to the 2008 recession.
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Mon Mar 09, 2020 10:34 pm

sprxUSA wrote:
Lol yeah quick perhaps optimistic. I was comparing time to/thru LAX as opposed to flying to SMF, then after to another flight. Most in SBA are probably indoctrinated to go via LA and wouldn't look up this SMF option. As an odd airline/route filter, I would certainly try it.

Side note, I miss the old commuter terminal there. Was so interesting to see the wide variety of carriers and colors that came and went.


I'd rather sit in a terminal at SMF for 2hours than sit in traffic with anxiety trying to get to LAX from Santa Barbara.
 
Wingtips56
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Mon Mar 09, 2020 11:02 pm

To the above post: Contour does have an interline ticketing and baggage agreement with AA, though I don't see it being used too much out west (not with AA dropping OAK-DFW again (!), which might have been fed by LF CEC-OAK). CEC and PGA are the two western LF cities that don't have AA service from the airports, so might be the only markets that would likely feed AA. LF is more likely to feed AA over CLT.

sprxUSA wrote:
Side note, I miss the old commuter terminal there. Was so interesting to see the wide variety of carriers and colors that came and went.

I "grew up" in the old commuter terminal. Somewhere I have snapshots of the back drop wall featuring Swift Aire, Century, WestAir, Apollo Airways, Desert Pacific and maybe Air Chico. Other occupants in my time there: Inland Empire, Golden Carriage Aire, Pacific Cal Air. Air Pacific left just before I got there. Cal Air Commuter was gone, but their sign was still sitting in one of the back offices. (Later, Pacific Express took over the former Swift Aire/Inland Empire corner space, after I'd moved next door to Air California.) For those that don't know, the Commuter Terminal expanded and morphed into the original International Arrivals Building.
Worked for WestAir, Apollo Airways, Desert Pacific, Western, AirCal and American Airlines (Retired). Flight Memory: 181 airports, 92 airlines, 78 a/c types, 403 routes, 58 countries (by air), 6 continents. 1,119,414 passenger miles.

Home airport : CEC
 
dolphinflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 10, 2020 2:29 am

williaminsd wrote:
Domestically, have to start with today’s news that JetBlue is adding a daytime flight to JFK 3x/week starting in June. SMF has been waiting for, well, forever for a daytime flight to JFK.

Add the international gates (B10 & B8), which are most used for Mexico late-night, and you have six gates that Alaska/American could use to capitalize on their new agreement. Even B4 is only used for five flights a day between Hawaiian and Contour, so maybe you have seven gates. Work something out with JetBlue at B6 (I see what you did there SMF…), there’s eight gates with no additional build, and makes adding four gates on that side of the concourse a natural for the much-discussed and much-needed expansion.
..


The 2nd jetBlue SMF-JFK will operate 4x/week (Mon/Wed/Fri/Sat) June 12 - Sept 7. Assuming it performs well, it's hoped that B6 will bring it back again in summer 2021 and extend the service season.

There is a potential option for making gates B4 and B6 swing domestic/international gates using glass partitions/doors, creating a sterile corridor to the international arrivals area. This would allow up to four international gates when needed for overflow, off-scheduled operations, etc. Very similar to the current situation at SJC with 2 dedicated international gates and two adjacent swing int'l/domestic gates.
 
ericm2031
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 10, 2020 2:57 am

sprxUSA wrote:
LOL no one in SBA area is going to fly via SMF to NYC when going to/thru LAX is about as quick/slow and many many many more options.


Not to mention buying 2 tickets is likely going to be more expensive than a ticket SBA-NYC. And the amenities offered on LAX-NYC flights are going to be better, even in Economy, than SMF-NYC.
 
tzadik
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 10, 2020 4:55 am

williaminsd wrote:
Moving Spirit, Frontier and Sun Country frees at least one gate (B11) for American use. Moving American to Term B frees at least two gates in the stubby leg of Term A for the low-cost carriers’ more sporadic service. This move also makes B22 (presently used by Frontier) fully available to Southwest to better accommodate their goal of (for now) hitting 100 departures/day out of SMF.


So basically everyone should just step aside or move to make way for American and Southwest? NK's service is 3x daily and possibly growing, not sure that qualifies as sporadic. Everyone wants to see competition but prefers the deck stacked. Not to mention B11 is probably the worst gate at SMF. B6 has what, 1 maybe 2 movements a day at best but they're not on the moving truck.
 
williaminsd
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 10, 2020 11:58 am

tzadik wrote:
williaminsd wrote:
Moving Spirit, Frontier and Sun Country frees at least one gate (B11) for American use. Moving American to Term B frees at least two gates in the stubby leg of Term A for the low-cost carriers’ more sporadic service. This move also makes B22 (presently used by Frontier) fully available to Southwest to better accommodate their goal of (for now) hitting 100 departures/day out of SMF.


So basically everyone should just step aside or move to make way for American and Southwest? NK's service is 3x daily and possibly growing, not sure that qualifies as sporadic. Everyone wants to see competition but prefers the deck stacked. Not to mention B11 is probably the worst gate at SMF. B6 has what, 1 maybe 2 movements a day at best but they're not on the moving truck.


Jeez relax, just kicking around some ideas here. Just to reassure you, the number of times SMF admin has solicited my input = zero. I don't expect this to change anytime soon. Airlines have switched terminals before. Did that = a "stacked deck?" The idea is to take advantage of Alaska joining One World and having closer ties with American in a way that might generate more traffic.

So Concourse B would have Southwest, with its projected 100+ flights/day, using 11 gates (B12-B23) on the west side (which is a strong utilization), and partners Alaska and American, plus AeroMexico, Volaris, JetBlue, Hawaiian, Contour and Boutique sharing eight gates (B4-B11) on the east. Should an international One World partner join the SMF roster, particularly if it uses heavies, it's relatively easy to accommodate. Should the partnership prove successful, it's also relatively easy to add gates.

Concourse A could focus the LCCs in gates A1-A5 (do Frontier, Sun Country, Spirit need more than five gates?), and Delta and United/Air Canada could share the large pier, four gates each A10-A17. Any spillover with the Legacies could go over to the other pier. Or, if a legacy needs five gates, the A1-A5 pier could be theirs alone. Point is, there appears to be plenty of flexibility here to oblige everyone.

As noted, I have no idea of the lease, operational, and political issues that could prevent these movements, and I'm sure they're nothing that could be resolved overnight. Alaska joining One World surprised me. SMF seems well-positioned to take advantage of it.

It wasn't personal...

Btw - delighted to hear that the new JetBlue flight is 4x/week.
In the land of lies, telling the truth is a crime...
 
tphuang
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 10, 2020 12:14 pm

Glad to see JetBlue adding capacity here. It was clearly a route they were doing well on and could capture more of the market with daytime flight.
 
tzadik
Posts: 154
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 10, 2020 4:58 pm

williaminsd wrote:
Jeez relax, just kicking around some ideas here. Just to reassure you, the number of times SMF admin has solicited my input = zero. I don't expect this to change anytime soon. Airlines have switched terminals before. Did that = a "stacked deck?" The idea is to take advantage of Alaska joining One World and having closer ties with American in a way that might generate more traffic.

So Concourse B would have Southwest, with its projected 100+ flights/day, using 11 gates (B12-B23) on the west side (which is a strong utilization), and partners Alaska and American, plus AeroMexico, Volaris, JetBlue, Hawaiian, Contour and Boutique sharing eight gates (B4-B11) on the east. Should an international One World partner join the SMF roster, particularly if it uses heavies, it's relatively easy to accommodate. Should the partnership prove successful, it's also relatively easy to add gates.

Concourse A could focus the LCCs in gates A1-A5 (do Frontier, Sun Country, Spirit need more than five gates?), and Delta and United/Air Canada could share the large pier, four gates each A10-A17. Any spillover with the Legacies could go over to the other pier. Or, if a legacy needs five gates, the A1-A5 pier could be theirs alone. Point is, there appears to be plenty of flexibility here to oblige everyone.

As noted, I have no idea of the lease, operational, and political issues that could prevent these movements, and I'm sure they're nothing that could be resolved overnight. Alaska joining One World surprised me. SMF seems well-positioned to take advantage of it.

It wasn't personal...

Btw - delighted to hear that the new JetBlue flight is 4x/week.


Apologize if I came off as snarky but this is a trend I see all over the place... Smaller airlines being moved or suggested to be moved to make way for the established carriers evolving needs. I think NK has moved 4 times in SEA to make way for a combination of AS, AA, and DL. WN will surely get all the gates in concourse C in DEN and NK will be forced to move. As soon as HA is forced to move to MSC at LAX I guarantee AA will get all of the freed gates in terminal 5 even though B6 and NK would each love to snag one. So yes the deck is stacked but I realize you didn't stack it. Whether consciously or subconsciously, I do believe it is somewhat personal because people don't like NK or F9 so it's easy to shoo them away into the corner. I will say it again though... B11 is probably the worst gate at SMF so it's no wonder NK has it. Thread drift, over.
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 10, 2020 9:28 pm

tzadik wrote:
williaminsd wrote:
Jeez relax, just kicking around some ideas here. Just to reassure you, the number of times SMF admin has solicited my input = zero. I don't expect this to change anytime soon. Airlines have switched terminals before. Did that = a "stacked deck?" The idea is to take advantage of Alaska joining One World and having closer ties with American in a way that might generate more traffic.

So Concourse B would have Southwest, with its projected 100+ flights/day, using 11 gates (B12-B23) on the west side (which is a strong utilization), and partners Alaska and American, plus AeroMexico, Volaris, JetBlue, Hawaiian, Contour and Boutique sharing eight gates (B4-B11) on the east. Should an international One World partner join the SMF roster, particularly if it uses heavies, it's relatively easy to accommodate. Should the partnership prove successful, it's also relatively easy to add gates.

Concourse A could focus the LCCs in gates A1-A5 (do Frontier, Sun Country, Spirit need more than five gates?), and Delta and United/Air Canada could share the large pier, four gates each A10-A17. Any spillover with the Legacies could go over to the other pier. Or, if a legacy needs five gates, the A1-A5 pier could be theirs alone. Point is, there appears to be plenty of flexibility here to oblige everyone.

As noted, I have no idea of the lease, operational, and political issues that could prevent these movements, and I'm sure they're nothing that could be resolved overnight. Alaska joining One World surprised me. SMF seems well-positioned to take advantage of it.

It wasn't personal...

Btw - delighted to hear that the new JetBlue flight is 4x/week.


Apologize if I came off as snarky but this is a trend I see all over the place... Smaller airlines being moved or suggested to be moved to make way for the established carriers evolving needs. I think NK has moved 4 times in SEA to make way for a combination of AS, AA, and DL. WN will surely get all the gates in concourse C in DEN and NK will be forced to move. As soon as HA is forced to move to MSC at LAX I guarantee AA will get all of the freed gates in terminal 5 even though B6 and NK would each love to snag one. So yes the deck is stacked but I realize you didn't stack it. Whether consciously or subconsciously, I do believe it is somewhat personal because people don't like NK or F9 so it's easy to shoo them away into the corner. I will say it again though... B11 is probably the worst gate at SMF so it's no wonder NK has it. Thread drift, over.



Whats wrong with B11? Its just past security and has decent amount of seating area. I'd say B22 and B23 on the west end are the worst two gates as they are the farthest walk from security and are situated very close to B20/21 making the area very crowded if there are multiple flights going out of there at once.

SMF also has the ability to move around airlines at different gates quite easily as the gate assignment is done electronically as airlines dont own or lease the gates themselves. They are simply given priority for certain areas and changing gates is basically a software change on the monitors. If the airlines have any equipment at the gates (eg. boarding order signs or "check your bag size here" signs can easily be moved by staff. Even the checkin counters are software controlled by the airport and can be changed easily. The only problem I see with moving some of the carriers to terminal A is that A has very little check in counter space and B has quite a bit of counters available which is probably the reason why most of the newer carriers out of SMF are all in B.

I'm pretty sure what Williminsd meant by "sporadic" service is that the carrier flies in/out at sporadic times of the day compared to the traditional carriers that have 3 main busy periods around 6AM 12PM and 11PM. F9 and NK don't fly during those times so if they were to move to A, it would help alleviate some of that 6AM congestion at the security checkpoint and spread out passengers a little more. A1-A5 gate area at 6AM with 5 flights trying to depart at the same timeframe is a complete shitshow and reminds me of LAX or LGA with no room to sit and people standing around. Sporadic carriers would be a better fit for this tight space.

I don't think AA or AS will be moving anytime soon just because of the checkin area situation, but if SMF builds those extra 4 gates on the east end of concourse B, I would put my bets on AA moving over. I would also expect SMF to add 2 more gates on the west end of concourse B to provide more room for WN's future growth.
 
ericm2031
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 10, 2020 9:45 pm

I remember at one point rent was higher in B, is this still the case? Seems like this would be hard to enforce now as there is no other option for new carriers and when needing to move airlines (like B6 to B) to accommodate the growth of the carriers on A.
 
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ASQXSMFJETTER
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 10, 2020 10:15 pm

wedgetail737 wrote:
williaminsd wrote:
Flightsfrom.com now shows Alaska Airlines goes back to daily 4x/day SMF-SAN starting March 19 with the last flight leaving SMF @ 5:30. A key difference is that none of these are shown as mainline for now and all of them on the E175.

This is a much better schedule for those of us who prefer to get our business done in one day if possible (albeit, a BUSY day) and shows that Alaska is not at all throwing in the towel on the business market on the segment. While mainline is nice, most of you know Alaska's (OO/QX) E175s carry 12 seats in F and this is one of the reasons I prefer Alaska on the route. Btw - this site shows a combined (with Southwest) 19 flights/day on this route each way M-F once Alaska returns to the daily 4x.

I hope this proves accurate. I just did a faux reso for March 19 on the Alaska site and it showed 4x w/last one at 5:30, so there is reason for confidence. Keeping fingers crossed...

Btw smflyer, I think your SMF-PAE call is on point.


As plausible SMF-PAE may be, a flight on a current city-pair would have to be sacrificed to add new service. Or UA would have to give up a PAE "slot" to give AS the additional slot. Or UA would add SEA-SMF, which would more than unlikely.





Sorry but SMF-SAN on AS has NOT been 4 a day since April. It does go back to 4 a day starting March 19th.
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 10, 2020 10:31 pm

ericm2031 wrote:
I remember at one point rent was higher in B, is this still the case? Seems like this would be hard to enforce now as there is no other option for new carriers and when needing to move airlines (like B6 to B) to accommodate the growth of the carriers on A.


I don't think they charge rent based on terminal anymore. They charge per enplanement and landing weight if I remember correctly. Plus terminal A has been completely remodeled and its interior parallels or even looks better than terminal B now.
 
tzadik
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 10, 2020 10:39 pm

smflyer wrote:
Whats wrong with B11? Its just past security and has decent amount of seating area. I'd say B22 and B23 on the west end are the worst two gates as they are the farthest walk from security and are situated very close to B20/21 making the area very crowded if there are multiple flights going out of there at once.


Operationally it's a nightmare, with the one way in and one way out alley way. Pushbacks are lengthy and aircraft need to be towed to the engine start line which is basically abeam taxiway Y2. If there's any aircraft in the RON spots behind B11/B9/B7 add a few more minutes to the push for some austin powers'ing. So whether you're in the aircraft being pushed or hanging out on Y for someone to push, plan on an additional 5 mins.
 
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SANFan
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Wed Mar 11, 2020 6:05 am

tzadik wrote:
this is a trend I see all over the place... Smaller airlines being moved or suggested to be moved to make way for the established carriers evolving needs. I think NK has moved 4 times in SEA to make way for a combination of AS, AA, and DL. WN will surely get all the gates in concourse C in DEN and NK will be forced to move. As soon as HA is forced to move to MSC at LAX I guarantee AA will get all of the freed gates in terminal 5 even though B6 and NK would each love to snag one. So yes the deck is stacked but I realize you didn't stack it. Whether consciously or subconsciously, I do believe it is somewhat personal because people don't like NK or F9 so it's easy to shoo them away into the corner. I will say it again though... B11 is probably the worst gate at SMF so it's no wonder NK has it. Thread drift, over.

You're right; there's no doubt that the small operations will be relocated much more frequently than the large cx -- for many reasons. Small cx use a single gate or perhaps a couple. Small cx carry many fewer pax to be inconvenienced by a move than the large tenants at airports. Smaller cx take up much less room at the airport, e.g., ticket counters, back office space, ops centers, and gates. Their overall importance to an airport (read: market share) is much less than the larger airlines. And honestly, the profit an airport realizes from a small, a few-flights-a-day-carrier as opposed to the large ones, puts them at a much lower priority level.

At SMF, compare WN and NK in each of the areas mentioned above. It would certainly be easier to move NK if necessary rather than WN, right? You seem to believe that NK should stay put in the ticket lobby and the concourses, while WN, AS and DL should be moved? What sense does that make? It costs lots of money for an airport to relocate a bunch of airlines when new terminals open, or for mergers, etc., cost dependent on the size of the operation. If SMF can improve things by moving NK and/or HA, B6, F9, all with what, 2-4 daily departures, as opposed to cx such as WN or AS, what do you suppose they will do?

Same thing applies at shopping centers; do the centers tend to move Sears or Macy's (the large retailers) or do they move the tiny hat shop or candy store if space requirements should change?

bb
 
tzadik
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Joined: Tue Dec 06, 2005 2:08 am

Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Wed Mar 11, 2020 10:48 pm

SANFan wrote:
tzadik wrote:
this is a trend I see all over the place... Smaller airlines being moved or suggested to be moved to make way for the established carriers evolving needs. I think NK has moved 4 times in SEA to make way for a combination of AS, AA, and DL. WN will surely get all the gates in concourse C in DEN and NK will be forced to move. As soon as HA is forced to move to MSC at LAX I guarantee AA will get all of the freed gates in terminal 5 even though B6 and NK would each love to snag one. So yes the deck is stacked but I realize you didn't stack it. Whether consciously or subconsciously, I do believe it is somewhat personal because people don't like NK or F9 so it's easy to shoo them away into the corner. I will say it again though... B11 is probably the worst gate at SMF so it's no wonder NK has it. Thread drift, over.

You're right; there's no doubt that the small operations will be relocated much more frequently than the large cx -- for many reasons. Small cx use a single gate or perhaps a couple. Small cx carry many fewer pax to be inconvenienced by a move than the large tenants at airports. Smaller cx take up much less room at the airport, e.g., ticket counters, back office space, ops centers, and gates. Their overall importance to an airport (read: market share) is much less than the larger airlines. And honestly, the profit an airport realizes from a small, a few-flights-a-day-carrier as opposed to the large ones, puts them at a much lower priority level.

At SMF, compare WN and NK in each of the areas mentioned above. It would certainly be easier to move NK if necessary rather than WN, right? You seem to believe that NK should stay put in the ticket lobby and the concourses, while WN, AS and DL should be moved? What sense does that make? It costs lots of money for an airport to relocate a bunch of airlines when new terminals open, or for mergers, etc., cost dependent on the size of the operation. If SMF can improve things by moving NK and/or HA, B6, F9, all with what, 2-4 daily departures, as opposed to cx such as WN or AS, what do you suppose they will do?

Same thing applies at shopping centers; do the centers tend to move Sears or Macy's (the large retailers) or do they move the tiny hat shop or candy store if space requirements should change?

bb


I never said move WN/AS/DL for NK, I'm saying it's absurd that NK has to move simply because one of them wants NK's gate. That's where the decks are stacked. The new war is for gate space and legacy carriers are using leverage via airport authorities to squeeze the likes of NK/F9 out. You see it in EWR with the port authority refusing to grant WN's vacated slots to NK to benefit UA. ORD let AA build that stinger terminal adjacent to L and clogging NK's alley way. Same in DFW with the E satellite. NK/F9 are getting systematically squeezed out of gate space in these markets but everyone wants to yammer about a fair market. If NK or F9 made an attempt to grab 2-3 more gates at SMF, magically WN would need them and who do you think they would be awarded too?
 
smflyer
Posts: 303
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Thu Mar 12, 2020 12:23 am

tzadik wrote:
SANFan wrote:
tzadik wrote:
this is a trend I see all over the place... Smaller airlines being moved or suggested to be moved to make way for the established carriers evolving needs. I think NK has moved 4 times in SEA to make way for a combination of AS, AA, and DL. WN will surely get all the gates in concourse C in DEN and NK will be forced to move. As soon as HA is forced to move to MSC at LAX I guarantee AA will get all of the freed gates in terminal 5 even though B6 and NK would each love to snag one. So yes the deck is stacked but I realize you didn't stack it. Whether consciously or subconsciously, I do believe it is somewhat personal because people don't like NK or F9 so it's easy to shoo them away into the corner. I will say it again though... B11 is probably the worst gate at SMF so it's no wonder NK has it. Thread drift, over.

You're right; there's no doubt that the small operations will be relocated much more frequently than the large cx -- for many reasons. Small cx use a single gate or perhaps a couple. Small cx carry many fewer pax to be inconvenienced by a move than the large tenants at airports. Smaller cx take up much less room at the airport, e.g., ticket counters, back office space, ops centers, and gates. Their overall importance to an airport (read: market share) is much less than the larger airlines. And honestly, the profit an airport realizes from a small, a few-flights-a-day-carrier as opposed to the large ones, puts them at a much lower priority level.

At SMF, compare WN and NK in each of the areas mentioned above. It would certainly be easier to move NK if necessary rather than WN, right? You seem to believe that NK should stay put in the ticket lobby and the concourses, while WN, AS and DL should be moved? What sense does that make? It costs lots of money for an airport to relocate a bunch of airlines when new terminals open, or for mergers, etc., cost dependent on the size of the operation. If SMF can improve things by moving NK and/or HA, B6, F9, all with what, 2-4 daily departures, as opposed to cx such as WN or AS, what do you suppose they will do?

Same thing applies at shopping centers; do the centers tend to move Sears or Macy's (the large retailers) or do they move the tiny hat shop or candy store if space requirements should change?

bb


I never said move WN/AS/DL for NK, I'm saying it's absurd that NK has to move simply because one of them wants NK's gate. That's where the decks are stacked. The new war is for gate space and legacy carriers are using leverage via airport authorities to squeeze the likes of NK/F9 out. You see it in EWR with the port authority refusing to grant WN's vacated slots to NK to benefit UA. ORD let AA build that stinger terminal adjacent to L and clogging NK's alley way. Same in DFW with the E satellite. NK/F9 are getting systematically squeezed out of gate space in these markets but everyone wants to yammer about a fair market. If NK or F9 made an attempt to grab 2-3 more gates at SMF, magically WN would need them and who do you think they would be awarded too?


Again, airlines dont rent or own gates at SMF, its a common use facility. Literally any airline can operate out of any gate. The airport however does give priority gate access to the airline that utilizes a certain gate often for operational reasons for airlines (eg. WN gets priority on B12-23, AA gets priority on A2,A4,A5, etc). Technically any airline can use the gate space as long as the prioritized airline isn't utilizing it or if the airport deems the gate necessary for another airline's operation. For instance gate A11 has no prioritized access and you can see all terminal A tenants use that gate as needed, usually during IROPs. F9 and Sun Country utilize B22 which is a WN prioritized gate since those two airlines operate late night flights and WN is mostly inactive late night and the B1-B11 side is busy late night with several red eyes. If anything, SMF goes out of its way in making sure the smaller airlines have access to gate space. Its also in the airports best interest to maintain a competitive environment for airlines as that keeps fares low and increases demand. Since the airport makes money on a per enplanement basis, its imperative for them to maximize the number of passengers.
 
dolphinflyer
Posts: 337
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sun Mar 15, 2020 2:00 pm

During February 2020, SMF handled 934,469 passengers, marking an 8.6% increase yoy on an 8.1% seat capacity increase. Airlines registering double-digit yoy increases during the month include Alaska, Delta, Frontier, Hawaiian, jetBlue and Volaris.

Of course, all bets are off re: March traffic statistics in light of the Coronavirus impact.
 
smflyer
Posts: 303
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Mon Mar 16, 2020 5:35 pm

Corona Cancellations:
AA 652 to PHX cancelled as of today
DL to MSP/DTW to be dropped in April

Anyone else able to extrapolate any other cancellations based on other forums here or flight searches?
 
ericm2031
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Mon Mar 16, 2020 7:04 pm

smflyer wrote:
Corona Cancellations:
AA 652 to PHX cancelled as of today
DL to MSP/DTW to be dropped in April

Anyone else able to extrapolate any other cancellations based on other forums here or flight searches?


DTW I could see, but both MSP and DTW isn't good. MSP must not be a very strong route

The biggest hit to SMF will be when WN announces their cuts. I wouldn't be surprised of a halving of flights to SoCal and Vegas to start.
 
ericm2031
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 17, 2020 2:10 am

Looks like the new daytime flight is already cut

B6 JFK-SMF JUN 1.4>1.0[1.0] JUL 1.5>1.0[1.0] AUG 1.5>1.0[1.0]

I know these might change, but shows WN still wants to grow SMF further. Some nice increases YOY. Looks like HOU is going year round and SJD will now be both Sat and Sun instead of just Sat. LAS shows 9 daily but a date I pulled in October shows 10 daily. SAN is also still at a whopping 15 daily.

WN HOU-SMF AUG 0.3>1.0[0.1] SEP 0>1.0[0.1] OCT 0>1.0[0]
WN LAS-SMF AUG 3>9[8] SEP 0>9[8] OCT 0>9[8]
WN MDW-SMF AUG 0.6>1.9[1.1] SEP 0>1.9[1.0] OCT 0>1.2[1.0]
WN PHX-SMF AUG 1.6>5[6] OCT 0>6[5]
WN SEA-SMF AUG 1.8>6[5] SEP 0>6[5] OCT 0>6[4]
WN SJD-SMF OCT 0>0.2[0.1]
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Wed Mar 18, 2020 2:46 pm

UA will be suspending in April:
SMF-EWR
SMF-IAD

I wonder if AA's CLT is next.
https://liveandletsfly.boardingarea.com ... oute-cuts/
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Thu Mar 19, 2020 12:55 am

B6 will be cutting SMF-LGB on April 1, a full 4wks earlier than planned.
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Thu Mar 19, 2020 1:10 am

ericm2031 wrote:
smflyer wrote:
Corona Cancellations:
AA 652 to PHX cancelled as of today
DL to MSP/DTW to be dropped in April

Anyone else able to extrapolate any other cancellations based on other forums here or flight searches?


DTW I could see, but both MSP and DTW isn't good. MSP must not be a very strong route

The biggest hit to SMF will be when WN announces their cuts. I wouldn't be surprised of a halving of flights to SoCal and Vegas to start.


I don't think the loss of MSP is indicative of a weak route, but more of the situation at hand. Its a longer route which can be better served by funneling a connection though SLC when demand is low. So far the majors seemed to have cut the longest routes out of SMF as those can still be served via a connection from a closer hub.
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Thu Mar 19, 2020 10:03 pm

Air Canada SMF-YVR dropped starting 3/31

https://dailyhive.com/mapped/air-canada ... er-flights
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Fri Mar 20, 2020 4:23 am

Contour to suspend SMF-PSP and SMF-SBA on 3/29
Aeromexico to suspend SMF-GDL on 3/30

Wow these route drops are getting serious.
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Tue Mar 24, 2020 5:59 pm

HA suspending SMF-HNL and SMF-OGG after 3/26 until late May tentatively
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Thu Mar 26, 2020 6:59 pm

WN also suspending SMF-HNL and SMF-OGG on 4/6
AS moving up the end date for SMF-OGG to 4/1
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sat Apr 04, 2020 12:51 am

Looks like Volaris suspended SMF-GDL as of today.
 
smflyer
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sun Apr 05, 2020 2:54 pm

AA cuts SMF-LAX secondary to Compass Airlines folding. Also cutting SMF-ORD which is probably expected.
Starting may, AA will only serve DFW 2x daily, PHX 4x Weekly, and CLT 1x daily. Pretty surprised CLT wasn't chopped. All but bare bones for AA going forward.
 
williaminsd
Topic Author
Posts: 399
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Fri Apr 17, 2020 2:27 pm

SMF hasn't posted pax numbers since January's, but I fear they will be brutal for March and April. I cancelled 4 trips to SMF in each month and know plenty of others who did the same. I've driven through SAN a couple of times over the last few weeks and the airport is a ghost town. I have to imagine SMF is the same. Anyone been there in last few weeks?

While I expect to start seeing a tiny rebound next month, I'll be delighted if any airport shows a YOY growth in 2020. Too bad as it was shaping up to be such a spectacular year.

Our team is calling it a day on the "shutdown" May 1 with all of us resuming our typical work activities. My first flight into SMF is May 5 and I am simply not canceling it. The sacrifice of our economy was implemented when US deaths were being projected in the millions. We are unlikely to reach 60,000 now. While that of course is a tragedy, we lost more than that to the flu in 2018/2019 with nearly 43,000,000 sick. That number of deaths is pretty typical and we didn't close our economy and put millions on the road to financial ruin because of it. If 60,000 deaths is the new threshold, our economy will never re-open.

In California, a state with over 35,000,000 people, we still have fewer than 1000 deaths, the vast majority of those with significant underlying conditions.

Alaska has cut its SAN-SMF flights to 2x/day, and while the return trip leaves at 4:30, that's still enough to get a full day of work in. The trips are reasonably well-timed for business each way. Southwest looks to be running between 5-7 each day, which is a pretty good frequency all things considered.

Alaska is blocking out the starboard aisle seats on the E175s and the middle seats on mainline to maintain social distancing. When looking at the seat maps for my flight, it looks like I'll be a bit lonely, at least for now.

Alaska has also notified mileage members that whatever status you have today is effective through December 2021, no matter how much you do or don't fly them this year (or next). This also applies to when Alaska joins Oneworld in 2021, where Gold status automatically qualifies you for the Sapphire level.

I'll also be at SFO in May. Going to be interesting to contrast the difference between a mid-sized, primarily domestic airport and a large, international airport.

Stay well everyone...
In the land of lies, telling the truth is a crime...
 
smflyer
Posts: 303
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Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Fri Apr 17, 2020 10:49 pm

williaminsd wrote:
SMF hasn't posted pax numbers since January's, but I fear they will be brutal for March and April. I cancelled 4 trips to SMF in each month and know plenty of others who did the same. I've driven through SAN a couple of times over the last few weeks and the airport is a ghost town. I have to imagine SMF is the same. Anyone been there in last few weeks?

While I expect to start seeing a tiny rebound next month, I'll be delighted if any airport shows a YOY growth in 2020. Too bad as it was shaping up to be such a spectacular year.

Our team is calling it a day on the "shutdown" May 1 with all of us resuming our typical work activities. My first flight into SMF is May 5 and I am simply not canceling it. The sacrifice of our economy was implemented when US deaths were being projected in the millions. We are unlikely to reach 60,000 now. While that of course is a tragedy, we lost more than that to the flu in 2018/2019 with nearly 43,000,000 sick. That number of deaths is pretty typical and we didn't close our economy and put millions on the road to financial ruin because of it. If 60,000 deaths is the new threshold, our economy will never re-open.

In California, a state with over 35,000,000 people, we still have fewer than 1000 deaths, the vast majority of those with significant underlying conditions.

Alaska has cut its SAN-SMF flights to 2x/day, and while the return trip leaves at 4:30, that's still enough to get a full day of work in. The trips are reasonably well-timed for business each way. Southwest looks to be running between 5-7 each day, which is a pretty good frequency all things considered.

Alaska is blocking out the starboard aisle seats on the E175s and the middle seats on mainline to maintain social distancing. When looking at the seat maps for my flight, it looks like I'll be a bit lonely, at least for now.

Alaska has also notified mileage members that whatever status you have today is effective through December 2021, no matter how much you do or don't fly them this year (or next). This also applies to when Alaska joins Oneworld in 2021, where Gold status automatically qualifies you for the Sapphire level.

I'll also be at SFO in May. Going to be interesting to contrast the difference between a mid-sized, primarily domestic airport and a large, international airport.

Stay well everyone...


Looks like the Feb and Mar numbers for SMF are up! 8.6% increase in passenger traffic for the month of February which is in line with what we expected to carry through the year. March on the other hand is at a YoY decline of 49.5% which to me doesn't pretty much lines up with 60-90% drop in passenger loads towards the back end of the month when the hysteria got really bad and most cities and states implemented their stay at home orders. I couldn't really extrapolate anything out of the drop in numbers other than WN and the legacies all had drops of 50-60% in traffic while HA and F9 "only" dropped 30% YoY, but I think that can be better explained by the fact they were both growing significantly from their year ago service (HA only served HNL and F9 operated to DEN/LAS on a less than daily basis) so that the extra passenger traffic earlier in the month skews the data a bit to show a smaller drop in passengers.
 
dolphinflyer
Posts: 337
Joined: Sun May 08, 2005 9:57 pm

Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Fri Apr 17, 2020 11:39 pm

TSA counts at SMF are averaging around 1,100 passengers per day, representing about 5% of normal daily throughput, meaning traffic is off 95%. That has been consistent for the past 2-3 weeks. That seems to be a stable base in this altered reality in which we currently live. The problem is, that passenger demand plummeted considerably, and the flights that are operating are going out with a handful of people onboard. I don't see this situation changing until some of the current travel restrictions/quarantines are lifted. When Gov. Newsom lifts the stay at home order for California residents, we should start to see some intrastate passenger demand rematerialize. The other two big restrictions for Californians are mandatory 14-day quarantines upon arrival in Hawaii and Texas, mandated by the governors of those states. These are some key inflection points where we should see passenger traffic begin to grow again.
 
smflyer
Posts: 303
Joined: Tue May 01, 2018 4:44 pm

Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:30 am

dolphinflyer wrote:
TSA counts at SMF are averaging around 1,100 passengers per day, representing about 5% of normal daily throughput, meaning traffic is off 95%. That has been consistent for the past 2-3 weeks. That seems to be a stable base in this altered reality in which we currently live. The problem is, that passenger demand plummeted considerably, and the flights that are operating are going out with a handful of people onboard. I don't see this situation changing until some of the current travel restrictions/quarantines are lifted. When Gov. Newsom lifts the stay at home order for California residents, we should start to see some intrastate passenger demand rematerialize. The other two big restrictions for Californians are mandatory 14-day quarantines upon arrival in Hawaii and Texas, mandated by the governors of those states. These are some key inflection points where we should see passenger traffic begin to grow again.


Any comment on the financial situation of the airport? I know they are still paying off the terminal B and acquired new debt in the last few years for the terminal A remodel and runway refurbishments that was over $200mil (if I remember correctly). Last I went through terminal A a few weeks ago there was plastic covering the ceilings in term A which im assuming is part of the ongoing remodeling. Is the remodeling going to continue or will/has that been discontinued? And what was the expected time frame for the completion of the remodel? It feels like it has been going on at a steady pace for 2-3 years now.
 
williaminsd
Topic Author
Posts: 399
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2018 3:52 pm

Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sat Apr 18, 2020 4:55 pm

smflyer wrote:
williaminsd wrote:
SMF hasn't posted pax numbers since January's, but I fear they will be brutal for March and April. I cancelled 4 trips to SMF in each month and know plenty of others who did the same. I've driven through SAN a couple of times over the last few weeks and the airport is a ghost town. I have to imagine SMF is the same. Anyone been there in last few weeks?

While I expect to start seeing a tiny rebound next month, I'll be delighted if any airport shows a YOY growth in 2020. Too bad as it was shaping up to be such a spectacular year.

Our team is calling it a day on the "shutdown" May 1 with all of us resuming our typical work activities. My first flight into SMF is May 5 and I am simply not canceling it. The sacrifice of our economy was implemented when US deaths were being projected in the millions. We are unlikely to reach 60,000 now. While that of course is a tragedy, we lost more than that to the flu in 2018/2019 with nearly 43,000,000 sick. That number of deaths is pretty typical and we didn't close our economy and put millions on the road to financial ruin because of it. If 60,000 deaths is the new threshold, our economy will never re-open.

In California, a state with over 35,000,000 people, we still have fewer than 1000 deaths, the vast majority of those with significant underlying conditions.

Alaska has cut its SAN-SMF flights to 2x/day, and while the return trip leaves at 4:30, that's still enough to get a full day of work in. The trips are reasonably well-timed for business each way. Southwest looks to be running between 5-7 each day, which is a pretty good frequency all things considered.

Alaska is blocking out the starboard aisle seats on the E175s and the middle seats on mainline to maintain social distancing. When looking at the seat maps for my flight, it looks like I'll be a bit lonely, at least for now.

Alaska has also notified mileage members that whatever status you have today is effective through December 2021, no matter how much you do or don't fly them this year (or next). This also applies to when Alaska joins Oneworld in 2021, where Gold status automatically qualifies you for the Sapphire level.

I'll also be at SFO in May. Going to be interesting to contrast the difference between a mid-sized, primarily domestic airport and a large, international airport.

Stay well everyone...


Looks like the Feb and Mar numbers for SMF are up! 8.6% increase in passenger traffic for the month of February which is in line with what we expected to carry through the year. March on the other hand is at a YoY decline of 49.5% which to me doesn't pretty much lines up with 60-90% drop in passenger loads towards the back end of the month when the hysteria got really bad and most cities and states implemented their stay at home orders. I couldn't really extrapolate anything out of the drop in numbers other than WN and the legacies all had drops of 50-60% in traffic while HA and F9 "only" dropped 30% YoY, but I think that can be better explained by the fact they were both growing significantly from their year ago service (HA only served HNL and F9 operated to DEN/LAS on a less than daily basis) so that the extra passenger traffic earlier in the month skews the data a bit to show a smaller drop in passengers.


I have to laugh... no sooner did I post than SMF published its passenger counts. Oh well, doesn't really change much of what I wrote. SMF being up nearly 9% in Feb just makes it all the more painful as 2020 was well on its way to a banner year. To reach the March 2020 total, you have to go back to 1995 when Sacramento totaled just 6.7 million pax.

This is going to hurt. April could well come in at 350,000 or so. But if our governor gives an all-clear or not, May will rebound. Too many men and women I know have expressed a clear and emphatic unwillingness to destroy their family's financial present and future over what looks to be a nationally typical flu season mortality count, and even lower in California where as of this morning,1041 had died. That's less than .003% of the population. Doing the math, to get to even 1% of our population, another 349,000 would have to die.

That's probably not going to happen...

May will be nothing close to normal obviously, but April is going to be the floor. All speculation of course, but I feel pretty good about my projections being more accurate than the computer models showing more than 2,000,000 Covid American deaths this year.

As for my first trip to SMF in May, flight up still looks pretty grim. Return has increased by six passengers since Thursday and Alaska does not appear to be blocking the aisle seats any longer (according to seat map). Plus the fare has gone up $50 in both Main and First Class, and $33 in Saver. So maybe they're seeing some hopeful signs.

Here's to turning the corner on this soon and getting back to work....
In the land of lies, telling the truth is a crime...
 
smflyer
Posts: 303
Joined: Tue May 01, 2018 4:44 pm

Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Thu Apr 30, 2020 4:34 am

Looks like JetBlue will be serving JFK via SFO as a tag on flight in May and June according to other forums. The good news is that SMF will finally get Mint service...
departure time also moved up to 1PM from SMF
 
williaminsd
Topic Author
Posts: 399
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2018 3:52 pm

Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sat May 09, 2020 5:16 pm

Some observations from my first “lockdown” trip yesterday: Southwest, SAN-SMF-SAN. Prior to this, my last trip was March 11 to Fresno. Since then, I have cancelled eight trips into SMF and another half dozen to various points throughout the west.

My last itinerary to SMF was on Alaska, Feb 21-Feb 25, so it’s been well over two months since I’d flown into Sacramento.

What a difference…

First, and surprising no one, the San Diego’s Terminal 1 was nearly deserted. As I walked through, I counted precisely four people on my way to Pier 2. Of note, all T1 operations have been consolidated into P2, with P1 and Gates 1-2 completely closed with no access permitted.

Once through TSA (maybe 2 minutes – “delay” caused by social distancing requirements), I went up the escalator to find Pete’s Coffee and the KUSI Newsstand/sundries stores open. The main bar/restaurant was closed.

Two Southwest flights were scheduled, mine to Sacramento and next door a flight to Phoenix. I was a bit surprised as I expected maybe 10-12 people for my flight, but was greeted by 20-25 passengers at each gate. The mix was of all ages, including children and elderly, which I also found surprising. Everyone was wearing a mask and keeping their distance.

By the time my flight boarded, I counted 32 pax in the PHX holding area. I couldn't get a final count as we boarded first.

Southwest took passengers in groups of ten and social distancing was again implemented as we approached the agent. The gloved agent would not touch your ticket, nor did she assist anyone having difficulty with the phone-reader. It wasn’t a big deal…

Once on board I noted that the first four rows on our 737-700 were blocked-off using the tray tables and I grabbed a window seat in Row 5. The FAs asked everyone to alternate rows if possible and only allowed groups traveling together to sit in same row on either side.

The last time you would see a FA was just prior to take-off as they made their last-minute checks. There was no service, not even water. That’s not a complaint, just an observation.

I counted 39 passengers, which again, was significantly more than I expected. It was the quietest flight I’ve ever been on…

Returning from Sacramento was similar, the only difference I noted were fewer people wearing masks on the return. At SMF Terminal B, I saw the sundry shop open plus Dos Coyotes take-out. They had a few people in each, which is encouraging.

Southwest had five jets parked on ramp at SMF and Alaska had two 737s parked. There were three Southwest jets at gates when I got to airport: one for Las Vegas, one for Burbank and mine. Las Vegas flight left before I arrived at gate, but the Burbank flight looked to have about 30 people waiting. I counted 38 passengers on my return to San Diego. While I couldn’t see all of Terminal A, I counted 2 Delta jets at gates and one United.

I had the same flight experience as my outbound, with one notable exception. The FAs noted that San Diego County has a mask requirement and told passengers they would be happy to supply them with masks upon exiting the plane if needed. Southwest always steps-up!

While I prefer Alaska on this route, through May 17, Alaska only has one RT per day, and the timing is impossible for one-day business. Starting May 18, it goes to 2x/day and June 1, 3x/day. Southwest offers five flights/day at present with convenient times for business each way.

My next flight to SMF is scheduled for 6/2 on Alaska. This is a multi-day trip and taking it will depend on hotel availability. Hope we're all starting to get back to work by then.

Stay well everyone…
In the land of lies, telling the truth is a crime...
 
ericm2031
Posts: 1466
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:46 am

Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sat May 09, 2020 9:19 pm

williaminsd wrote:
While I prefer Alaska on this route, through May 17, Alaska only has one RT per day, and the timing is impossible for one-day business. Starting May 18, it goes to 2x/day and June 1, 3x/day. Southwest offers five flights/day at present with convenient times for business each way.

My next flight to SMF is scheduled for 6/2 on Alaska. This is a multi-day trip and taking it will depend on hotel availability. Hope we're all starting to get back to work by then.

Stay well everyone…


Just FYI, Alaska hasn't published its actual schedule for June yet and I don't think May 18th onward is either as they have published a big increase in flights starting that day that I doubt will happen.
 
williaminsd
Topic Author
Posts: 399
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2018 3:52 pm

Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sat May 09, 2020 11:15 pm

ericm2031 wrote:
williaminsd wrote:
While I prefer Alaska on this route, through May 17, Alaska only has one RT per day, and the timing is impossible for one-day business. Starting May 18, it goes to 2x/day and June 1, 3x/day. Southwest offers five flights/day at present with convenient times for business each way.

My next flight to SMF is scheduled for 6/2 on Alaska. This is a multi-day trip and taking it will depend on hotel availability. Hope we're all starting to get back to work by then.

Stay well everyone…


Just FYI, Alaska hasn't published its actual schedule for June yet and I don't think May 18th onward is either as they have published a big increase in flights starting that day that I doubt will happen.


Thanks for head's-up.

I was able to book the June 2 trip, but schedule changes on Alaska have been common. I may have to go Southwest then too...
In the land of lies, telling the truth is a crime...
 
ericm2031
Posts: 1466
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:46 am

Re: Sacramento (SMF) Aviation Thread - 2020

Sun May 10, 2020 1:57 pm

williaminsd wrote:
ericm2031 wrote:
williaminsd wrote:
While I prefer Alaska on this route, through May 17, Alaska only has one RT per day, and the timing is impossible for one-day business. Starting May 18, it goes to 2x/day and June 1, 3x/day. Southwest offers five flights/day at present with convenient times for business each way.

My next flight to SMF is scheduled for 6/2 on Alaska. This is a multi-day trip and taking it will depend on hotel availability. Hope we're all starting to get back to work by then.

Stay well everyone…


Just FYI, Alaska hasn't published its actual schedule for June yet and I don't think May 18th onward is either as they have published a big increase in flights starting that day that I doubt will happen.


Thanks for head's-up.

I was able to book the June 2 trip, but schedule changes on Alaska have been common. I may have to go Southwest then too...


Looks like the schedule is now up, with 1x daily extended until 5/23 and 2x daily starts 5/24 into June

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