Again with the Capacity issue, I hear it time and time again with nothing to back it up, EADS (I can't write all that out). said it right.. It's only excess capacity if planes are flying half empty, they are most definitely NOT doing that, particularly in the summer season and many airlines cut back on frequency in the Winter season to manage that capacity variation that's needed (Shocker huh!). Sure we want every airline to run their full schedule year round, but that's just not appropriate for many markets from BOS for many many reasons. But those seasonal markets for DL for example (DUB,LIS,FCO,MAN as examples) are in different stages, but DUB has had it's season lengthened and an up-gauge in equipment, started as a 752, now going to be 330 in high season. BIG jump. FCO is going in as a 330, LIS switched to an Int'l 757..So tell me where the capacity issues are.. airlines do NOT put bigger equipment on routes with 50% loads for example, they DO put bigger equipment on routes with 80-90% loads, reasonable fares and a market to draw from, both O&D and to a LIMITED extent Connections. (remember BOS is 94% O&D) - per Massport's financials.
Let's provide some practical examples
1. LH is switching to the 380 on the MUC route..
2. KE is moving up to the 777 (assuming the China issue doesn't crash their market either)
3. DL have increased gauge on DUB, double daily on CDG, gone in straight at a 330 to FCO
4. TP have added a second route via PDL
5. VS have added the 2nd daily, it's stuck and not trashed their loads.
6. BA have successfully incorporated their 380 into the mix
7. AF have moved up to the 350 on BOTH their dailies in the summer
8. OS moving in with their link to VIE and Eastern Europe
What you are seeing right now is a consolidation of power.. VS/KL/AF/DL and AZ are going to be running roughly 17 daily in the summer (i am tired so I maybe 1 off either way there), LH/OS are expanding, BA is consolidating on LHR, DY is still packing them in from LGW (and I do not believe DL will impact that, there is enough traffic from South London to go around), FCO and CDG, they only axed MAD because they bailed generally because of their financial situation, once all those 787's are back up and running.. well..
Fares are a different thing and the wizards in Revenue Management at AF, DL and DY (for CDG) must feel that the fare and ancillary revenues levels are sustainable, otherwise they would not put on extra flying, sure one reason maybe to lock B6 out, but B6 have made no mention of CDG yet for example and honestly you are looking at 2022 or 2023 before they get into that market, these adds are for 2020.... So forgive me.. but no, it's not excess capacity, it's a market adjustment. Now if AF and their 350's and DL with their 2nd daily, cause a huge drop in load factors (more seats, but not as much growth in pax), then I would agree with you, there is excess capacity, the airlines would too. But for right now, there's no such thing, despite your continued protestations to that end.
The only true international routes with excess capacity right now out of BOS are CPH and PVD/PEK and possibly CMN, everyone else is doing just fine. SK is fixing CPH later this year with the 321 and we can all understand the issues with HU given the socio issues back in China and CMN is just getting its feet wet. You can argue the domestic capacity situation with the fight between DL and B6 and potentially now AA weighing in, that some of those routes definitely have excess capacity coming (AUS, RDU, LGA as examples) but again the Route Planning guys and the Revenue Management guys either see a path to make it work (you have to make EBITDA numbers at the end of the day), or it's a loss leader as part of the network and they are happy to take the pain as they make money elsewhere to defend their territory, they are doing that now and still making money hand over fist. When your domestic pax number grows 3%, when one of the major carriers (WN) cuts a whole host of routes back, people want to fly here plain and simple.
If there was excess capacity, Massport would not be building 7 (read a possible 14, with the double N/B versions) new International Gates to allow for future growth. Their own conservative opinion has 50m pax by roughly 2027 (if memory serves), the general feeling on this board that they are going to get there sooner than that unless the economy tanks (and we've discussed that before), at that point, there will be a decent amount of capacity to remove, but all bets would be off.
In conclusion, loads and fares do not mean the same. DL ran LHR for years on pathetic load numbers, because a) their customers needed the route and b) upfront was usually full, now look at them. Until such time as we see the loads in the summer dropping to 80% or below across the board in the critical summer months with the increased frequencies. I will argue excess capacity all day long (except if the economy tanks as noted above)
That feeling when you sit at the end of a runway, brakes are released and the raw power takes over. Now that is a thing of beauty and it never gets old.