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cschleic
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:11 pm

KLMatSJC wrote:
And the winner is....United Airlines

Flights to LAX, SFO, and DEN


Wow, and with San Luis so close. Local incentives? One thing about San Luis...a friend of mine lives there and travels a lot for work. They can experience delays due to fog. Is that as much an issue in Santa Maria?
 
wedgetail737
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:13 pm

KLMatSJC wrote:
And the winner is....United Airlines

Flights to LAX, SFO, and DEN


And UA is going to charge $300 each way between SMX and LAX after the promotion is over.

But it could start a new round of additional airlines potentially serving SMX in the future.
Last edited by wedgetail737 on Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
B747forever
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:17 pm

KLMatSJC wrote:
And the winner is....United Airlines

Flights to LAX, SFO, and DEN


Any info on start dates and schedules?
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flyfresno
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:17 pm

KLMatSJC wrote:
And the winner is....United Airlines

Flights to LAX, SFO, and DEN


Wow, that’s pretty good...3 destinations is a strong entrance!
 
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intotheair
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:19 pm

Well I guess I was wrong. But if any legacy were going to do SMX, it would be UA. They were the last ones there.

I really thought SMX's best days were behind it now that SBP has turned into a higher quality facility. The two are still so close that I can't help but think that they more or less will compete against one another. It's only a 40 minute drive from one to the other, and the flying population is in San Luis, not Santa Maria.
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KLMatSJC
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:24 pm

wedgetail737 wrote:
And UA is going to charge $300 each way between SMX and LAX after the promotion is over.

Is there even a promotion? SBP-SFO/LAX has usually been around $250-$300 R/T for years now.

cschleic wrote:
Wow, and with San Luis so close. Local incentives? One thing about San Luis...a friend of mine lives there and travels a lot for work. They can experience delays due to fog. Is that as much an issue in Santa Maria?

Yes there were definitely some incentives there, particularly for DEN. I think with the huge growth of SBP, there definitely could be a market for SMX flights.

SBP is fairly close to the water without a great ILS system. SMX is probably more susceptible to fog, but their ILS system is also probably better. SBP actually only has an ILS system on one direction of the main runway and doesn't have great drainage either. That's why you see lots of cancellations in rather light rian.

B747forever wrote:
Any info on start dates and schedules?

Nothing yet.

intotheair wrote:
I really thought SMX's best days were behind it now that SBP has turned into a higher quality facility. The two are still so close that I can't help but think that they more or less will compete against one another. It's only a 40 minute drive from one to the other, and the flying population is in San Luis, not Santa Maria.

I definitely agree. They are touting the location of Vandenberg AFB and the new Space Force. Lots of Space Launch corporations coming. As someone in that industry, I don't particularly buy it. The businesses and money are for the most part in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara.
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AirFiero
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:37 pm

SBP is fairly close to the water without a great ILS system. SMX is probably more susceptible to fog, but their ILS system is also probably better. SBP actually only has an ILS system on one direction of the main runway and doesn't have great drainage either. That's why you see lots of cancellations in rather light rian.


Huh? By what measure is one ILS better than the other? Both airports have 1 ILS to one runway, same minimums (200/2), and basically the same set of 5 approaches including GPS/RNAV approaches. What am I missing?
 
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KLMatSJC
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:42 pm

AirFiero wrote:
SBP is fairly close to the water without a great ILS system. SMX is probably more susceptible to fog, but their ILS system is also probably better. SBP actually only has an ILS system on one direction of the main runway and doesn't have great drainage either. That's why you see lots of cancellations in rather light rian.


Huh? By what measure is one ILS better than the other? Both airports have 1 ILS to one runway, same minimums (200/2), and basically the same set of 5 approaches including GPS/RNAV approaches. What am I missing?

I thought SMX had lower minimums than SBP.
A318/19/20/21/21N A332/3 A343/5 A388 B712 B722 B732/3/4/7/8/9/9ER B744/4M B752/3 B762ER/3/3ER/4ER B772/E/L/W B788 CRJ2/7/9 Q400 EMB-120 ERJ-135/140/145/145XR/175 DC-10-10 MD-82/83/88/90

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williaminsd
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:47 pm

KLMatSJC wrote:
And the winner is....United Airlines

Flights to LAX, SFO, and DEN

That's a pretty big deal... congratulations to everyone at SMX!

Some local coverage... https://www.ksby.com/news/local-news/sa ... er-flights
Last edited by williaminsd on Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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diverdave
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:52 pm

KLMatSJC wrote:
I definitely agree. They are touting the location of Vandenberg AFB and the new Space Force. Lots of Space Launch corporations coming. As someone in that industry, I don't particularly buy it. The businesses and money are for the most part in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara.


There is a LOT of travel to VAFB. SpaceX sends out lots of folks and there are government,military, and contractors. Lompoc, Buellton, and Santa Maria all have new Hilton properties that recently opened.

Santa Maria (the city) has a population of over 100K, and Lompoc is over 40K. There is plenty of population just within a 20 mile radius of the airport.

I am stunned that UA is offering service to 3 hubs. Plainly they see the potential. I wonder what the frequencies will be?

edit: just posted on their Facebook page, 1 flight per day to each hub starting June 4th. All CR2. Says SMX will be the 20th California airport served by UA.
Last edited by diverdave on Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:59 pm, edited 4 times in total.
 
AirFiero
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:54 pm

KLMatSJC wrote:
AirFiero wrote:
SBP is fairly close to the water without a great ILS system. SMX is probably more susceptible to fog, but their ILS system is also probably better. SBP actually only has an ILS system on one direction of the main runway and doesn't have great drainage either. That's why you see lots of cancellations in rather light rian.


Huh? By what measure is one ILS better than the other? Both airports have 1 ILS to one runway, same minimums (200/2), and basically the same set of 5 approaches including GPS/RNAV approaches. What am I missing?

I thought SMX had lower minimums than SBP.


Nope, the ILS approaches are pretty much identical. I’d post the approach charts, but I could never figure out how to post pix here.
 
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intotheair
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 7:12 pm

diverdave wrote:
There is a LOT of travel to VAFB. SpaceX sends out lots of folks and there are government,military, and contractors. Lompoc, Buellton, and Santa Maria all have new Hilton properties that recently opened.


I suppose. But is that really enough to justify service at three airports that are all within 90 miles of one another? Great for SMX I suppose, but I still thought that air traffic to the Central and south coast would consolidate to SBP and SBA only. And I can't express to people enough on here how Santa Maria is still a dump.
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MIflyer12
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 7:24 pm

KLMatSJC wrote:
wedgetail737 wrote:
And UA is going to charge $300 each way between SMX and LAX after the promotion is over.

Is there even a promotion? SBP-SFO/LAX has usually been around $250-$300 R/T for years now.



Yeh, but you can fly SBP-ORD for $319, DFW for $293, and EWR for $255. For me a connection beats the drive down to LAX.
 
SurfandSnow
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 7:24 pm

Interesting... LAX/SFO-SMX didn't work for UA a few years ago, but is a good opportunity now?
Flying in the middle seat of coach is much better than not flying at all!
 
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terence757
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 7:30 pm

intotheair wrote:
diverdave wrote:
There is a LOT of travel to VAFB. SpaceX sends out lots of folks and there are government,military, and contractors. Lompoc, Buellton, and Santa Maria all have new Hilton properties that recently opened.


I suppose. But is that really enough to justify service at three airports that are all within 90 miles of one another? Great for SMX I suppose, but I still thought that air traffic to the Central and south coast would consolidate to SBP and SBA only. And I can't express to people enough on here how Santa Maria is still a dump.

Santa Maria is not the garden spot of the central coast but it is hardly a dump. Not sure why you despise it so much. I can't say whether this service will be a success as Santa Maria has lost flights in the past but United seems to be doing quite well these days even without the opinions of the experts here.
 
ericm2031
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 7:31 pm

intotheair wrote:
diverdave wrote:
There is a LOT of travel to VAFB. SpaceX sends out lots of folks and there are government,military, and contractors. Lompoc, Buellton, and Santa Maria all have new Hilton properties that recently opened.


I suppose. But is that really enough to justify service at three airports that are all within 90 miles of one another? Great for SMX I suppose, but I still thought that air traffic to the Central and south coast would consolidate to SBP and SBA only. And I can't express to people enough on here how Santa Maria is still a dump.


That is quite a bit of service for all 3 airports...especially when there isn't much vehicle traffic in between the 3, so SMX is only 45 minutes from both SBA and SBP...both of which are seeing explosive growth and both are starting to run into facility restraints on any additional service/upgauging of flights.

I think this is just part of United's push to be California's airline and they don't want to risk the possibility of somebody else going to SMX first. UA is the largest carrier on the Central Coast by quite a bit and they want to keep it that way.
 
Boston92
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 10, 2020 8:27 pm

Looks like once daily to all 3 destinations. Service starts June 4th (except SMX-SFO which starts June 5th).
 
kfinger
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Sat Jan 11, 2020 2:32 am

I agree that SMX does have population in its vicinity between Santa Maria, Orcutt, Guadalupe and Lompoc as well as Vandenberg AFB. However, population alone doesn't determine air service. The tourism, name recognition, and university presence contribute to the reason that San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara have bigger airports, and have continued to grow. There is still room to expand at these airports with more flights and bigger planes. United will start only daily service from SMX, when SBP is 30 miles away and already has multiple flights a day to DEN, LAX, SFO and others. Central Coast Shuttle runs seven times a day to LAX and all the nonstops they have. I wish that the $1.3 million grant for this service could have been spent on improving county bus service, that would connect to SBP and SBA, instead of duplicating what already exists nearby.
 
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diverdave
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Sat Jan 11, 2020 9:49 pm

kfinger wrote:
The tourism, name recognition, and university presence contribute to the reason that San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara have bigger airports, and have continued to grow. There is still room to expand at these airports with more flights and bigger planes.


intotheair wrote:
... so SMX is only 45 minutes from both SBA and SBP...both of which are seeing explosive growth and both are starting to run into facility restraints on any additional service/upgauging of flights.


So is there room to grow at SBA and SBP or not? I think a long term factor is that both Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo are not business friendly, and that many of their citizens are not all that fond of their airport and the impacts on their communities. So it's not all that clear whether there would be support for further expansions at either airport. Especially at SBP where SLO thinks the answer to everything is more bicycles and bike lanes.

kfinger wrote:
United will start only daily service from SMX, when SBP is 30 miles away and already has multiple flights a day to DEN, LAX, SFO and others. Central Coast Shuttle runs seven times a day to LAX and all the nonstops they have. I wish that the $1.3 million grant for this service could have been spent on improving county bus service, that would connect to SBP and SBA, instead of duplicating what already exists nearby.


So SMX is not even allowed to try?

intotheair wrote:
...but I still thought that air traffic to the Central and south coast would consolidate to SBP and SBA only.


Well of course it did consolidate to those two airports for a couple of years. SMX lost its UA service when the Embraer turboprops were retired. So maybe UA has some underutilized CRJs and they will take a run at the grant and see if the service is sustainable.


intotheair wrote:
And I can't express to people enough on here how Santa Maria is still a dump.


At first I thought you were referring to the airport, but maybe you indeed do mean the city.
 
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KLMatSJC
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Sun Jan 12, 2020 1:05 am

diverdave wrote:
So is there room to grow at SBA and SBP or not? I think a long term factor is that both Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo are not business friendly, and that many of their citizens are not all that fond of their airport and the impacts on their communities. So it's not all that clear whether there would be support for further expansions at either airport. Especially at SBP where SLO thinks the answer to everything is more bicycles and bike lanes.

I don't think you could be more wrong, especially about SLO. They are fostering businesses left, right, and center, with a lot of them coming out of Cal Poly. Tech companies are even starting to venture down the coast. The number of passengers at the airport has doubled in the last 5 years. In that time frame, they have built a brand new terminal, added 2 new airlines, and 6 new destinations. The community loves the new service, and will do anything to grow the airport.

Well except extending the runway, because SLO is full of NIMBYs.
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kfinger
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Sun Jan 12, 2020 6:20 pm

So SMX is not even allowed to try?


At the expense of improving existing transportation services? No, I don't think they should. There is only a limited amount of funding available and with SBP being so close, it should have gone there. The airline industry has consolidated and moved toward bigger panes from fewer airports.
 
FATFlyer
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Mon Jan 13, 2020 6:56 pm

I've been traveling and this is the first chance to comment on the news.

I didn't expect UAX to 3 hubs, nice catch for SMX.

But it is only 1 dailly roundtrip to each hub and not all have great times. A bit limiting there. If UA stays past the first year I would not be surprised to see the number of destinations reduced.

Here is the schedule.
UA5506 DEN-SMX dep 11:15 a.m. arr 1:12 p.m.
UA5609 SMX-DEN dep 12:20 p.m. arr 4:14 p.m.

US5879 LAX-SMX dep 10:00 a.m. arr 11:04 a.m.
UA5587 SMX-LAX dep1:42 p.m. arr 2:51 p.m.

UA5255 SFO-SMX dep 10:30 p.m. arr 11:40 p.m.
UA5541 SMX-SFO dep 6:30 a.m. arr 7:35 a.m.
"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain
 
williaminsd
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Mon Jan 13, 2020 8:09 pm

kfinger wrote:
So SMX is not even allowed to try?


At the expense of improving existing transportation services? No, I don't think they should. There is only a limited amount of funding available and with SBP being so close, it should have gone there. The airline industry has consolidated and moved toward bigger panes from fewer airports.


Wow... Authoritarian much?
 
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Coronado990
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Tue Jan 14, 2020 12:53 am

kfinger wrote:
So SMX is not even allowed to try?


At the expense of improving existing transportation services? No, I don't think they should. There is only a limited amount of funding available and with SBP being so close, it should have gone there. The airline industry has consolidated and moved toward bigger panes from fewer airports.


The wouldn't SMX fulfill that need being centrally located with the longer runway?
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SBPFan
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jan 31, 2020 4:18 am

Coronado990 wrote:
kfinger wrote:
So SMX is not even allowed to try?


At the expense of improving existing transportation services? No, I don't think they should. There is only a limited amount of funding available and with SBP being so close, it should have gone there. The airline industry has consolidated and moved toward bigger panes from fewer airports.


The wouldn't SMX fulfill that need being centrally located with the longer runway?


Regarding the Economic center of the region, Santa Maria is far south of the Central Coast economic center.

San Luis Obispo is directly between the North County population bases (Paso - Templeton - Atascadero) corridor, the Cambria-Morro Bay corridor and the Five Cities in South County.

San Luis Obispo County is Three times the size of Rhode Island. SLO is directly in the center of that area and has the only highways that run through the county North to South.

Santa Maria and Orcutt (and Lompoc Vandenberg Village etc.) while SM is 100K+ population and heavy in military people moving around still doesn't have the demographics to draw like San Luis with Cal Poly, the North County Wine and passenger draws and the nearby Five Cities tourism and other travel (mostly business now).

Regarding the long runway: The ERJ-175 has proven to be the regional jet of choice and is very comfortable and seems to work just fine at SBP.

A319s are seen in SBP quite often when the Mustangs are chartering a flight. 737's have been known to land now and then. The runway is longer than John Wayne in the OC.

Santa Maria, even with a long runway for whatever reason time and time again doesn't pan out. The economics have proven not to work at SMX for a number of airlines, but seeing as how airlines are now getting upset at SBP for being perhaps much busier than expected in recent times (maybe the airport expansion wasn't enough?) they are now apparently looking elsewhere, like SMX for overflow.

I wonder if SMX gets aggressive enough and it works if Paso tries to get commercial service again, and the Central Coast gets cannibalized a bit and SBP drops off.. could happen. Right now SBP is red-hot and last data shows traffic again going through the roof: https://www.sloairport.com/wp-content/u ... c-2019.pdf
 
N1120A
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Thu Mar 05, 2020 9:47 am

KLMatSJC wrote:
Yes there were definitely some incentives there, particularly for DEN. I think with the huge growth of SBP, there definitely could be a market for SMX flights.

SBP is fairly close to the water without a great ILS system. SMX is probably more susceptible to fog, but their ILS system is also probably better. SBP actually only has an ILS system on one direction of the main runway and doesn't have great drainage either. That's why you see lots of cancellations in rather light rian.


The ILS at SMX is similar - one direction and opposite of the prevailing winds. That's due to terrain at the other end. SBP has a better approach to 29 than SMX does, though the airlines can't take full advantage of that.

Also, SMX is odd. The fog can sit in that valley sort of like it does in the Central Valley and create much lower, lingering ceilings than the Coastal airports. I've flown VFR into SBP while traffic was holding and diverting out of SMX.
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FATFlyer
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Thu Mar 05, 2020 4:51 pm

N1120A wrote:
Also, SMX is odd. The fog can sit in that valley sort of like it does in the Central Valley and create much lower, lingering ceilings than the Coastal airports. I've flown VFR into SBP while traffic was holding and diverting out of SMX.


The Santa Maria area averages more low visibility fog days per year than the Central Valley or other California areas.

Average # of days per year with visibility below 1/4 mile:
Bakersfield - 22 days
Fresno - 39 days
Long Beach - 41 days
LAX - 37 days
Sacramento - 34 days
San Diego - 23 days
SFO - 14 days
Santa Barbara - 21 days
Santa Maria - 87 days

https://wrcc.dri.edu/Climate/comp_table_show.php?stype=foggy_days_avg
"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain
 
N1120A
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Mar 06, 2020 1:45 am

FATFlyer wrote:
N1120A wrote:
Also, SMX is odd. The fog can sit in that valley sort of like it does in the Central Valley and create much lower, lingering ceilings than the Coastal airports. I've flown VFR into SBP while traffic was holding and diverting out of SMX.


The Santa Maria area averages more low visibility fog days per year than the Central Valley or other California areas.

Average # of days per year with visibility below 1/4 mile:
Bakersfield - 22 days
Fresno - 39 days
Long Beach - 41 days
LAX - 37 days
Sacramento - 34 days
San Diego - 23 days
SFO - 14 days
Santa Barbara - 21 days
Santa Maria - 87 days

https://wrcc.dri.edu/Climate/comp_table_show.php?stype=foggy_days_avg


There you go.
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wedgetail737
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Mar 06, 2020 3:52 am

I think AS should fly to SMX.
 
ericm2031
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Sat Mar 14, 2020 9:27 am

Looks like this service has been postponed until October due to COVID-19
 
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GTFspotter
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Mon Jun 08, 2020 5:14 pm

ericm2031 wrote:
Looks like this service has been postponed until October due to COVID-19


When I looked a couple weeks back, the flights were below $200 (think I chose Denver as my research) which is pretty good. I assume as time goes on prices will exponentially rise to make up for time.
 
gauchojon
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Fri Jul 17, 2020 7:58 am

Pushed forward again to March 2021. Don’t think this will get off the ground
 
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GTFspotter
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Sun Aug 16, 2020 5:58 pm

Thank you for the info, as I just posted in the United Network/Livery thread asking when they pushed it back to. Where did you find this information gauchojon (are you an SB native or graduate?)
 
Chuska
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Mon Aug 17, 2020 1:10 am

Per UA's website, DEN-SMX and SFO-SMX now planned to start Mar 4, 2021. No LAX-SMX.
 
strfyr51
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Mon Aug 17, 2020 2:43 am

psa1011 wrote:
UA tried SFO a couple of years ago, so that seems unlikely but I could be wrong.

UAX could do SFO-SMX-LAX, or LAX-SMX-DEN and connect 3 of the UA hubs, SMX doesn't have the where with all to support much more than connecting service,
They didn't when wings West was there, nor Apollo nor Golden West and that goes back to 1980 when I worked at Golden Gate.
 
FATFlyer
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Re: Santa Maria, CA (SMX) New Service Announcement Jan 10 2020

Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:19 pm

This is a local Santa Maria media article from July mentioning the start date change and dropping of SMX-LAX. The article also talks about other virus impacts at the airport including Allegiant and its loads, occupancy at the terminal adjacent hotel, airport finances (it is an airport district receiving property taxes), etc.
https://santamariatimes.com/news/local/united-airlines-launch-at-santa-maria-airport-delayed-until-2021-due-to-coronavirus/article_36cc3006-72b4-50f2-8fac-ba2c45d49091.html
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