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AVFCdownunder
Topic Author
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Joined: Thu Nov 05, 2015 11:12 am

Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 2:02 pm

So with the related thread of Air New Zealand selling its LHR slot for $27m, how does it work with this talk of airlines making "ghost" flights during the coronavirus downturn, just to keep their slots. Surely if airlines are paying that sort of money, they have the discretion to use the slot as much or as little as they like? In other words, if an airline is contracted to arrive at an airport say 7 x per week, but they choose to later operate only 5 inbound flights, then I presume the airport is still receiving it's contracted fees based on 7 flights, so what is the need for a "ghost flight"?
 
Aceskywalker
Posts: 148
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2018 4:55 am

Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 2:25 pm

The rules are very clear - 80% utilization for a slot pair over the year or the airline forfeits it. No exceptions. That's why these ghost flights are happening.

And the merits of making an exception in extraordinary circumstances like this versus regulators putting their foot down and refusing any exception is a topic of debate in of itself.
Environmentally and fiscally it makes more sense to be lenient so these planes can be parked instead of flying around.
Pragmatically, if the regulators start making exemptions now, it opens the door for exemptions to be asked for all sorts of reasons in the future.

On a side note, I wish that more airports were Level 3 slot coordinated. Its crazy how huge airports in the US like LAX and ORD aren't so, and it leads to ground chaos.
 
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readytotaxi
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 2:38 pm

you don't get a second chance to make a first impression!
Growing older, but not up.
 
MIflyer12
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 2:40 pm

AVFCdownunder wrote:
Surely if airlines are paying that sort of money, they have the discretion to use the slot as much or as little as they like? In other words, if an airline is contracted to arrive at an airport say 7 x per week, but they choose to later operate only 5 inbound flights, then I presume the airport is still receiving it's contracted fees based on 7 flights, so what is the need for a "ghost flight"?


The 80% utilization rule is in place to assure use of the slot - to avoid 'slot squatting', acquiring slots for the purpose of blocking other carriers to limit competition.
 
KlimaBXsst
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 3:11 pm

I find these ghost flights not very “green” in LHR.

These slot operation requirements should be temporarily suspended so airlines don’t have to run themselves into the ground to keep their place during a world containment emergency like this.

Healthy airlines are essential for world economic recovery once this ends.
Aesthetically the A 340 got it right!
 
AVFCdownunder
Topic Author
Posts: 88
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 3:12 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
AVFCdownunder wrote:
Surely if airlines are paying that sort of money, they have the discretion to use the slot as much or as little as they like? In other words, if an airline is contracted to arrive at an airport say 7 x per week, but they choose to later operate only 5 inbound flights, then I presume the airport is still receiving it's contracted fees based on 7 flights, so what is the need for a "ghost flight"?


The 80% utilization rule is in place to assure use of the slot - to avoid 'slot squatting', acquiring slots for the purpose of blocking other carriers to limit competition.


That makes sense.
 
Thenoflyzone
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 3:23 pm

In situations like these, the slot rules should be put on hold.

This is why IATA is asking for global suspension of slot rules due to the Coronavirus.

https://www.iata.org/en/pressroom/pr/2020-03-02-01/

Now that makes sense.
us Air Traffic Controllers have a good record, we haven't left one up there yet !!
 
argentinevol98
Posts: 176
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 3:30 pm

They really ought to allow an exemption on the rule given the current situation-not to mention climate change concerns. Obviously airlines can't really be operating their current LHR schedule at full capacity and it makes no damn sense to force them to burn fuel and contaminate the atmosphere needlessly by flying around empty planes just to preserve a slot. It's not any airlines fault that what is happening is happening so it certainly doesn't seem to be preventing true "slot squatting" right now. I agree with IATA's request. That said, I fully agree with the rule in other circumstances (though I would actually find some way to prohibit ghost flights-I'd want true, not manipulated, 80% utilization-for both fairness and environmental concerns).
"He sospechado alguna vez que la única cosa sin misterio es la felicidad, porque se justifica por sí sola"-Jorge Luis Borges
 
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eta unknown
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 4:56 pm

The EU is willing to grant exceptions provided IATA produce hard data- not just colourful pictures which seems to have become the preferred information sharing method of the younger generation:
https://aviationweek.com/air-transport/ ... cecf783a94
 
Rossiya747
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 5:11 pm

The youtube channel Half as Interesting has a good video about this and his example was when a british airline flew empty flights to cardiff from LHR because they suspended their Tashkent flights
223 319 320 321 332 333 346 388 734 737 738 739 38M 744 752 753 763 764 772 773 77W 788 789 208 CRJ2 E145 E190 UA DL AA WN AC CM 4O AV 2K FI DY D8 SK LH EI FR U2 IB OS LX BA VS BT PS MS SA SW QR EY HY AI 9W TG SQ MH AK D7 QZ BR NH CA QF MI LV/IB VY AL
 
jomur
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 5:41 pm

They couldCould just fly a small plane with a few seats or do they have to fly big jets?
 
alasizon
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 5:46 pm

jomur wrote:
They couldCould just fly a small plane with a few seats or do they have to fly big jets?


The aircraft size isn't determined by the slot but it's not like all routes can just be flown by small planes. Good luck making LHR-AKL on a Dash 8.
Airport (noun) - A construction site which airplanes tend to frequent
 
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Dutchy
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 5:47 pm

This situation seems to be force major territory. The Dutch authorities are making an exception in order not to run empty flights.
Many happy landings, greetings from The Netherlands!
 
minilinde
Posts: 198
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 6:23 pm

Dutchy wrote:
This situation seems to be force major territory. The Dutch authorities are making an exception in order not to run empty flights.


Source? What exceptions are being made?
Types flown: A318, A319, A320, A321, A32N, A333, A343, A359, A380, AT42, AT72, B717, B733, B735, B736, B737, B738, B739, B744, B748, B763, B772, B773, B788, B789, C550, CRJ2, CRJ9, DH4D, F50, ERJ190, MD80s/90, RJ100
 
minilinde
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 6:32 pm

AVFCdownunder wrote:
So with the related thread of Air New Zealand selling its LHR slot for $27m, how does it work with this talk of airlines making "ghost" flights during the coronavirus downturn, just to keep their slots. Surely if airlines are paying that sort of money, they have the discretion to use the slot as much or as little as they like? In other words, if an airline is contracted to arrive at an airport say 7 x per week, but they choose to later operate only 5 inbound flights, then I presume the airport is still receiving it's contracted fees based on 7 flights, so what is the need for a "ghost flight"?


You have misunderstood the concept of slots I think. Airlines do not pay authorities/airports for slots. These are given out to airlines by independent slot coordinators. Slots can however be traded in some countries (LHR is the obvious example). Once an airline has a slot, and have flown at least 80% of the slots given, the airline get what is called "historics" on these slots, meaning that the airline doesn't have to reapply for them next season.

In this COVID-19 downturn, having slots at slots constrained airports is a real negative liability for airlines. Airlines HAVE to fly 80 % of LHR slots to continue to have historics on their slots for next season. The system of slots for highly congested airports works well under normal circumstances, but the COVID-19 hysteria is not normal circumstances at all!
Types flown: A318, A319, A320, A321, A32N, A333, A343, A359, A380, AT42, AT72, B717, B733, B735, B736, B737, B738, B739, B744, B748, B763, B772, B773, B788, B789, C550, CRJ2, CRJ9, DH4D, F50, ERJ190, MD80s/90, RJ100
 
Thenoflyzone
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 6:54 pm

eta unknown wrote:
The EU is willing to grant exceptions provided IATA produce hard data- not just colourful pictures which seems to have become the preferred information sharing method of the younger generation:
https://aviationweek.com/air-transport/ ... cecf783a94


Hard data won’t be hard to produce. Eventually, the EC will most likely comply with IATA’s request.
us Air Traffic Controllers have a good record, we haven't left one up there yet !!
 
flyjay123
Posts: 143
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 7:21 pm

Slots can however be traded in some countries (LHR is the obvious example).

Which other countries allow this ?
 
jomur
Posts: 353
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 7:35 pm

alasizon wrote:
jomur wrote:
They couldCould just fly a small plane with a few seats or do they have to fly big jets?


The aircraft size isn't determined by the slot but it's not like all routes can just be flown by small planes. Good luck making LHR-AKL on a Dash 8.


I meant more for slot sitting so not using too much fuel to do so more than for paying passengers..
 
minilinde
Posts: 198
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 07, 2020 8:58 pm

flyjay123 wrote:
Slots can however be traded in some countries (LHR is the obvious example).

Which other countries allow this ?


Not sure, as I work within European aviation. Pretty sure that’s slots can’t be traded in the EU.
Types flown: A318, A319, A320, A321, A32N, A333, A343, A359, A380, AT42, AT72, B717, B733, B735, B736, B737, B738, B739, B744, B748, B763, B772, B773, B788, B789, C550, CRJ2, CRJ9, DH4D, F50, ERJ190, MD80s/90, RJ100
 
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AirKevin
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sun Mar 08, 2020 12:03 am

alasizon wrote:
Good luck making LHR-AKL on a Dash 8.

Or any plane, for that matter.
Captain Kevin
 
SpoonNZ
Posts: 31
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sun Mar 08, 2020 7:25 am

alasizon wrote:

The aircraft size isn't determined by the slot but it's not like all routes can just be flown by small planes. Good luck making LHR-AKL on a Dash 8.

The destination isn’t determined by the slot either, right? If SQ canceled some of their A380 flights could they just pay a UK local flight school a few bucks to take a Cessna in each day?
 
alasizon
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sun Mar 08, 2020 8:12 am

SpoonNZ wrote:
alasizon wrote:

The aircraft size isn't determined by the slot but it's not like all routes can just be flown by small planes. Good luck making LHR-AKL on a Dash 8.

The destination isn’t determined by the slot either, right? If SQ canceled some of their A380 flights could they just pay a UK local flight school a few bucks to take a Cessna in each day?


Yes and no, there are rules about leasing the slot out (since it would no longer be SQ operating the flight) and it would have to be an actual ICAO recognized airline carrier operating the flight.

There are some LHR slots that are limited to certain intra-UK routes as part of the BA/BD remedy slots (most of which Flybe had). As I recall they are only limited to Intra-UK if someone other BA is in possession of them, versus BA can use them for wherever. With the Flybe bankruptcy, those slots are up in the air in more way than one so there may be some changes there.

Outside of the EU, there are a few airports that have aircraft size restrictions on specific groups of slots (LGB and SNA for example but they aren't slot coordinated due to airfield limitations, rather it is due to agreements with the locals over how many flights will be allowed at the airport).
Airport (noun) - A construction site which airplanes tend to frequent
 
crjflyboy
Posts: 456
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Tue Mar 10, 2020 3:22 pm

LHR must allow flexibility in this current crisis ... forcing airlines to fly ghosts flights or lose your slots is crazy ...

https://www.9news.com.au/national/empty ... 20b1308a53
 
Bongodog49
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Tue Mar 10, 2020 3:35 pm

crjflyboy wrote:
LHR must allow flexibility in this current crisis ... forcing airlines to fly ghosts flights or lose your slots is crazy ...

https://www.9news.com.au/national/empty ... 20b1308a53


You need to change your opening words to "The EU must allow flexibility" Here in the UK we have agreed to follow all EU rules for the next 12 months whilst our future agreement with the EU is negotiated. As it stands the UK govt has sought permission to waive the 80/20 rule from the EU but has not yet had a reply.

BA have in the past been very good at keeping withing the 80/20 rules by moving flights slightly, its relatively easy to do when you have a large slot holding provided you are still flying at least 80% of your timetable. It would be especially easy at present as the rule is applied over a IATA season, with only 19 days left in the present one, BA (and I'm sure VS) could shut down their entire LHR operation until the new season starts and still be within the rules. The problem comes with the start of the next season if the present situation has not improved.
 
crjflyboy
Posts: 456
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Tue Mar 10, 2020 3:42 pm

LHR should do it regardless ...this is an emergency situation and for the EU dragging their feet is unacceptable
 
seansasLCY
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Tue Mar 10, 2020 4:13 pm

minilinde wrote:
flyjay123 wrote:
Slots can however be traded in some countries (LHR is the obvious example).

Which other countries allow this ?


Not sure, as I work within European aviation. Pretty sure that’s slots can’t be traded in the EU.


LHR slots were traded while the UK was in the EU and the continue to be now (Air NZ) even though EU law still applies for us. According to articles I found Alitalia also sold slots at MXP so it is evidently possible in the EU. https://centreforaviation.com/analysis/ ... ister-2330
 
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jetblastdubai
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Tue Mar 10, 2020 11:17 pm

jomur wrote:
They couldCould just fly a small plane with a few seats or do they have to fly big jets?


The USA might be different but back when ORD had slots, LGB-based JetAmerica acquired a couple and they didn't have enough planes to use them so they hired a local pilot to fly a Baron (BE58) from MKE down to ORD and back using the "JetAmerica" callsign just to keep the slots. A total waste of resources. When the weather was down and we were running severe delays into ORD, we (ATC) would simply refuse the plane and send it back to MKE and tell the pilot we would mark him down as using the slot.
 
dtremit
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Tue Mar 10, 2020 11:30 pm

Looks like the EU has decided to suspend the rules: https://www.theguardian.com/business/20 ... pty-planes
 
Thenoflyzone
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Thu Mar 12, 2020 9:53 pm

^ good.
us Air Traffic Controllers have a good record, we haven't left one up there yet !!
 
minilinde
Posts: 198
Joined: Sat Dec 31, 2005 1:16 am

Re: Use it or lose it?

Thu Mar 12, 2020 10:25 pm

dtremit wrote:
Looks like the EU has decided to suspend the rules: https://www.theguardian.com/business/20 ... pty-planes


Not actual what has happened, or what the article says. The fact is we do still not have any slot waivers in Europe, incl LHR. The only slot we are not cancelling beyond the 80-20 role in my company is LHR , and we fly all major eu hubs. So the is still ghost flights in the european schedules...
Types flown: A318, A319, A320, A321, A32N, A333, A343, A359, A380, AT42, AT72, B717, B733, B735, B736, B737, B738, B739, B744, B748, B763, B772, B773, B788, B789, C550, CRJ2, CRJ9, DH4D, F50, ERJ190, MD80s/90, RJ100
 
Iluvtofly
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Thu Mar 12, 2020 10:56 pm

Under the circumstances facing aviation today .... this is ridiculous.
Flown - B707 727 737 747 757 767 777 787 A300 310 319 320 321 330 340 Concorde BAC111 TU154 VC10 F27 F28 F100 DC3 DC8 DC9 DC10 L1011 L188 DHC6 DHC7 DHC8 E135 E145 HS748 MD11 ST27 CV580 S340 ATR42 J31
 
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SuseJ772
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Thu Mar 12, 2020 11:22 pm

I am hardly an environmentalist, but not suspending this rule right now is nuts. It looks like they came to their senses.
Currently at PIE, requesting FWA >> >>
 
Skyguy
Posts: 507
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Thu Mar 12, 2020 11:50 pm

There is an another element to this as well. There is a large ecosystem of literal shopping malls in airports now of cafe's, restaurants, bars, duty-free shops, high-end retail boutiques etc., and all of them depend on foot traffic to justify the high rent and costs of operating in an airport. As a result, the airports are under pressure to make sure they bring airlines and aircraft in with passengers and airlines don't just squat on slot pairs. But in situations like this where even the plans themselves are mostly empty, it makes little sense to fly the flights.
"Those who talk, do not know, and those who know, do not talk."
 
32andBelow
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Fri Mar 13, 2020 4:17 am

Skyguy wrote:
There is an another element to this as well. There is a large ecosystem of literal shopping malls in airports now of cafe's, restaurants, bars, duty-free shops, high-end retail boutiques etc., and all of them depend on foot traffic to justify the high rent and costs of operating in an airport. As a result, the airports are under pressure to make sure they bring airlines and aircraft in with passengers and airlines don't just squat on slot pairs. But in situations like this where even the plans themselves are mostly empty, it makes little sense to fly the flights.

All those shops are scams anyways. Good riddance.
 
minilinde
Posts: 198
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 14, 2020 5:03 am

Yesterday late afternoon EC published a slot waiver for Europe. The period is 01 March to 30. June 2020.
Types flown: A318, A319, A320, A321, A32N, A333, A343, A359, A380, AT42, AT72, B717, B733, B735, B736, B737, B738, B739, B744, B748, B763, B772, B773, B788, B789, C550, CRJ2, CRJ9, DH4D, F50, ERJ190, MD80s/90, RJ100
 
rbavfan
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Re: Use it or lose it?

Sat Mar 14, 2020 6:08 am

AVFCdownunder wrote:
So with the related thread of Air New Zealand selling its LHR slot for $27m, how does it work with this talk of airlines making "ghost" flights during the coronavirus downturn, just to keep their slots. Surely if airlines are paying that sort of money, they have the discretion to use the slot as much or as little as they like? In other words, if an airline is contracted to arrive at an airport say 7 x per week, but they choose to later operate only 5 inbound flights, then I presume the airport is still receiving it's contracted fees based on 7 flights, so what is the need for a "ghost flight"?


They are not receiving landing & T-O fees. They also are not getting fees for sales from passengers in terminal, fuel & other services.

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