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dfwjim1
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Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sat Oct 03, 2020 3:30 pm

When did red eye flights, west to east, start to become a common practice in the United States? Was it after the advent of the jet age or were red eyes a regular occurrence when props were around?

Thanks for any information.
 
MO11
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sat Oct 03, 2020 4:12 pm

It depends on whether you want to qualify this with number of stops. One version of the DC-3 was known as the Douglas Sleeper Transport. In the 1930s American flew from Los Angeles to Newark with either 4 or 6 enroute stops. One flight left at 430pm, arriving Newark at 1142am; another left at 1030pm, arriving Newark at 710pm. And yes, with the DST there were east-to-west redeyes.
 
MIflyer12
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sat Oct 03, 2020 4:31 pm

For the second time in five minutes I'll point somebody to Departed Flights. AA timetables as far back as 1969. Eastern to 1972. DL 1973, Pan Am 1973, TWA 1972, UA 1972.

http://www.departedflights.com/timetables.html
 
MO11
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sat Oct 03, 2020 8:18 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
For the second time in five minutes I'll point somebody to Departed Flights. AA timetables as far back as 1969. Eastern to 1972. DL 1973, Pan Am 1973, TWA 1972, UA 1972.

http://www.departedflights.com/timetables.html


Why didn't you point to http://timetableimages.com/ttimages/complete/complete.htm which goes much farther back?
 
WidebodyPTV
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sat Oct 03, 2020 11:21 pm

Today, the overall popularity of redeyes is largely a derivative of utilization and repositioning. E.g. NK can "create" a CLE-LAX trip out of an airplane that would otherwise sit idle for 10 hours, or AA can move a plane that would otherwise just sit at LAS to DFW, and create a prime revenue opportunity for it in the morning (given that the change in time zones creates an imbalance). The popularity with these flights among passengers lies almost entirely with the cost (yes, there are some exceptions) -- redeye flights are generally the least expensive option. For these reasons, redeye flights were disproportionately cut following the pandemic, just as they were during the Great Recession.
 
PSU.DTW.SCE
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sat Oct 03, 2020 11:45 pm

Early on the red eyes were a way of scheduling flights and frequency.
There was also a mindset when business travel really exploded in the 80s and 90s that it was critical to maximize “face time” and red eyes where the only way to fly back eastbound without loosing productive work time.

In the past 10–15 years its been a function of increasing aircraft utilization. It was primarily what supported some of these thin near trans con routes.

a sample day for a DL 738 might be:
0700 CMH-ATL
0930 ATL-SJU
1300 SJU-ATL
1700 ATL-CMH
1930 CMH-LAX
2230 LAX-CMH
 
dfwjim1
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 2:13 am

MIflyer12 wrote:
For the second time in five minutes I'll point somebody to Departed Flights. AA timetables as far back as 1969. Eastern to 1972. DL 1973, Pan Am 1973, TWA 1972, UA 1972.

http://www.departedflights.com/timetables.html


I was looking for general information only.
 
BUFJACK10
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 1:02 pm

The economics of utilization and repositioning also proved as a benefit for business travelers with the need to make their time more productive. With the introduction of jet aircraft and the relatively short flight time people on the west coast literally could fly east overnight, have a full day of work and fly west all in the same day. It was almost as productive for East coast business people to fly out the first thing in the morning, get to the west coast early or mid morning and have close to a full day of work and fly home in the evening or overnight.
It could be tiring but you learned to get some sleep on the overnight. I have done this dozens of times and know many who have done it as well. It was preferable to taking an additional night, staying in a hotel and being away when you could be home.
With today’s lie flat seats it definitely is much more comfortable than in the early days. It’s a benefit for airlines to get the premium fare and also to the traveler’s expense account. Even after a premium fare it was less expensive all things considered for the business traveler
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reltney
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 2:08 pm

Delta Air Lines was the pioneer of the “all nighter”. It started in the 50s when the planes needed repositioning. Someone figured the planes were empty so they sold the flights super cheap. They were called owly flights. You can find old ads back to the late 50s using the DC-7 referencing Deltas early bird and owly bird flights. The Dc-3 DST flights by others were different as the planes just started in the day and flew thru the night.

My Reference is looking thru old Delta Digest magazines from the 50s plus George Cearly and RG Davis books about Delta. Yup, the first...
I find it amazing as I fly lots of the all nighters and they are FULL. On passenger even remarked to me “why do you have these all night flights”. I replied “ because you keep buying tickets”.
Knives don't kill people. People with knives kill people.
OUTLAW KNIVES.

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lightsaber
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 2:50 pm

While prior airlines used redeyes, JetBlue's launch had it a major part of their business plan. I can recall how much more prevalent redeye flights became due to their efforts (including competing flights). The media attention increased the popularity. I can get just enough sleep on a TCON redeye to want to use them, they give me one more day of vacation.

Lightsaber
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Chuska
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 3:13 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
For the second time in five minutes I'll point somebody to Departed Flights. AA timetables as far back as 1969. Eastern to 1972. DL 1973, Pan Am 1973, TWA 1972, UA 1972.

http://www.departedflights.com/timetables.html


C'mon you guys, let people who lived through this era tell their actual stories of how it was back in the day. Its much better than telling someone to go back and research it for yourself. Furthermore, redeyes go back much further than 1969. I'd say you can trace them all the way back to around 1930 when navaids and runway lighting were becoming more prevalent.
 
SFOThinker
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 3:48 pm

I took a redeye on Western Airlines in 1959, from LAX to MSP, with a connection in Denver. Both flights were DC 6B aircraft in all-first class configuration. The fare charged was coach, which seems to have been a common Form of discounting for redeyes at the time.
 
Chuska
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 3:59 pm

dfwjim1 wrote:
When did red eye flights, west to east, start to become a common practice in the United States? Was it after the advent of the jet age or were red eyes a regular occurrence when props were around?

Thanks for any information.


I know you're asking about west to east redeyes but this one was rather different; In January 1974 TWA flight 15, a 707, flew JFK-ORD-LAX-SFO, departed JFK at 2300, arrived SFO at 0444.
 
reltney
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 4:41 pm

reltney wrote:
Delta Air Lines was the pioneer of the “all nighter”. It started in the 50s when the planes needed repositioning. Someone figured the planes were empty so they sold the flights super cheap. They were called owly flights. You can find old ads back to the late 50s using the DC-7 referencing Deltas early bird and owly bird flights. The Dc-3 DST flights by others were different as the planes just started in the day and flew thru the night.

My Reference is looking thru old Delta Digest magazines from the 50s plus George Cearly and RG Davis books about Delta. Yup, the first...
I find it amazing as I fly lots of the all nighters and they are FULL. On passenger even remarked to me “why do you have these all night flights”. I replied “ because you keep buying tickets”.



In fact it was the was the Chicago Miami 1 Apr 1954 with the DC-7 owl comet flight. Labeled as the “RedEye”. Another first for Delta. Repositioning the aircraft with empty seats turned into the Red Eyes when the airline decided to offer cheap fares ..... seemed to have worked out well.

Cheers
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OUTLAW KNIVES.

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masseybrown
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 4:46 pm

One of my favorite's was TW502/503, a Super Constellation, which operated well into the jet age from IDL/JFK to CLE (with sometimes a stop in MKC) to LAX then SFO. It was a red-eye in both directions and charged nightcoach fares, which, minus the jet surcharge, were a huge bargain if you didn't mind loud, low, and slow. It carried very good loads.
 
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mercure1
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 4:48 pm

I have a 1959 OAG and it shows plenty of overnight West Coast - East Coast flights
mercure f-wtcc
 
Ziyulu
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 5:17 pm

Would there be meal service on such flights?
 
wedgetail737
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 5:24 pm

Was America West the only airline that had "red eyes" from East to West through LAS? I think they were called "Nite Flites." I took one and ended up at OAK at 3:30am.
 
Sancho99504
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 7:25 pm

wedgetail737 wrote:
Was America West the only airline that had "red eyes" from East to West through LAS? I think they were called "Nite Flites." I took one and ended up at OAK at 3:30am.

HP did a lot of late night flying thru LAS which ended mid 2007 after the merge with US. I took advantage of these flights as I could utilize the full day in Chicago. Leaveve ORD at like 2100, connect in LAS, depart for SEA at 0059 and arrive at like 0300.
They had a huge bank of flights arriving from 2230-2330 and departing for both coasts between 2359 and 0059.
kill 'em all and let God sort 'em out-USMC
 
ltbewr
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 8:18 pm

Freight and mail was likely an added bonus for these 'red eye' flights. Revenues fop the cargo in the hold would have enough to allow for cheap seats on them. I recall in the mid-1980's Eastern had night owl flights, I believe on 757's hub at HOU where checked baggage wasn't allowed or limited as mainly freight flight
 
seat1a
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 8:36 pm

Growing up in Detroit in the 70's Delta (and Eastern) always had NC (Night Coach!) flights to TPA, MIA, MCO, and FLL. Flights left usually between 10pm and 11pm. That considered a red-eye?
 
cedarjet
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 9:01 pm

Good to see Delta get a few shout outs because they did indeed go hard on the red eye, and also the hub and spoke model, even in the years pre-deregulation they snapped up every route licence out of Atlanta they could get their hands on, and sold thru-fares. Some execs of a rival airline famously took a redeye DC-8 from the west coast, into Atlanta at dawn, which was rammed with people and full planes. Light bulb moment.

On a personal note, the really brutal redeyes are only partial transcon but full redeye eg LAX DFW, LAX ORD, only 3h in the air but if you take off late enough eg 2300, you’re landing in daylight eg 0500 but only maybe slept an hour. BRUTAL.
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
 
Max Q
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 9:31 pm

ltbewr wrote:
Freight and mail was likely an added bonus for these 'red eye' flights. Revenues fop the cargo in the hold would have enough to allow for cheap seats on them. I recall in the mid-1980's Eastern had night owl flights, I believe on 757's hub at HOU where checked baggage wasn't allowed or limited as mainly freight flight



They did but used A300’s IIRC into IAH not HOU
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


GGg
 
gsg013
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 9:50 pm

I've always loved Red-Eye flights for a few reasons.

East-West. You can fly late evening 9 PM or so and land in Denver Salt Lake, or the West Coast and be asleep by 12:30 and wake up in your new time-zone fresh and ready to go.

East-West: I can get an entire day and dinner before having to leave for my flight.

West to east: the best part is getting a full day on the west coast eating dinner and then getting on and falling asleep for ~ 5 hours. I would not like to do this and go straight into the office the same day but the good news is your didn't have to pay for another night at a hotel in SF or LA and then lose 8 daylight hours flying back across the country.

To me there is also something really calming about flying in pitch darkness I just always have felt that you are not wasting as much time and crowds are usually quieter more tame in the airport in the late evening.
 
flyfresno
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 10:26 pm

Sancho99504 wrote:
wedgetail737 wrote:
Was America West the only airline that had "red eyes" from East to West through LAS? I think they were called "Nite Flites." I took one and ended up at OAK at 3:30am.

HP did a lot of late night flying thru LAS which ended mid 2007 after the merge with US. I took advantage of these flights as I could utilize the full day in Chicago. Leaveve ORD at like 2100, connect in LAS, depart for SEA at 0059 and arrive at like 0300.
They had a huge bank of flights arriving from 2230-2330 and departing for both coasts between 2359 and 0059.


I think that HP's redeye hub at LAS was actually a great idea. It really accomplished three things for them, and despite the growing competition from LCCs in LAS, I am a bit surprised they didn't keep it longer than they did.

1) As you said, it provided a connecting opportunity East to West later than almost all other carriers from city pairs without non-stops (and even some with them). Getting from JFK to FAT, I could leave JFK almost 3 hours later using HP thought LAS than connecting through LAX on UA.
2) It provided a huge increase in utilization. Many of the airplanes making up the LAS "redeye hub" from central/mountain/pacific cities would have been PHX RONs, sitting in their out stations from 9PM-ish to 6am-ish. Instead, those planes did an overnight LAS turn.
3) The times worked out well for local traffic because, well, Las Vegas. People generally want to travel to LAS in the afternoon and evening, and the late departing flights allowed a full day in Vegas for those people who used those flights as O&D.
 
TW870
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Sun Oct 04, 2020 10:32 pm

I see two themes emerging in this thread. One is about when coast-to-coast red-eye flying began that took advantage of long distances and time zone changes to allow passengers to sleep the night aboard while having a full day at both origin or destination. The other is utilization flying during the night - such as the Delta "owl comets" in the 1950s, or a variety of back-side-of-the-clock flying in the Midwest during the industrial era when they often moved auto parts on widebody, very late/early departures.

As far as transcontinental redeyes go, and as others have noted, all coast-to-coast flying was "red-eye" during the DC-3 era (and before) because airplanes weren't fast enough to complete a daylight flight in either direction, and had to do at least some night flying to complete the multi-leg trip. Eastbound (and obviously westbound) daylight flying became possible with the larger postwar landplanes, and by 1950 east and westbound daylights were very common. See this 1950 TWA schedule that has a 749 Connie doing LAX-MDW-IDL with an 8am departure and 8:55pm arrival:

http://www.timetableimages.com/ttimages ... w50-01.jpg

Westbound redeyes were very common throughout the piston era due to slow cruise speeds. In this 1959 TWA schedule, you see that the IDL-LAX schedule is 2 daylights and one red-eye.

http://www.timetableimages.com/ttimages ... w59-01.jpg

Given all this, I think the better historical question is how red-eye flying gradually became less significant to transcontinental flying.

Excellent thread!
 
TW870
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Mon Oct 05, 2020 12:28 am

As I look at this schedule, one other thing to note is that in the piston era, slow cruise speeds meant that airlines schedule red-eye flying over shorter distances, both on connecting flights and non-stops. In the schedule above, for example, that TWA flew LGA-MDW-MKC in both directions with a roughly midnight departure and 6am arrival (and thus a middle-of-the-night MDW connection). It is interesting to note that while there was far, far less air travel in the 1950s than there was once jets came in, airports had domestic departures all night long, which is quite different than legacy hubs today that tend to have no departures between roughly midnight and 5am.

I am curious about how those all-night trips appealed to. Did the CAB let them discount those flights? I am wondering if "night coach" type products were cheaper than regular daylight service.
 
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aemoreira1981
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Mon Oct 05, 2020 2:21 am

Airlineroute yesterday published a flashback to 1959 on that. Look at what AA, NW, TW, and UA flew on the NS59 schedule: https://www.routesonline.com/news/38/ai ... -schedule/

NW flew a red-eye on ANC-IDL and SEA-IDL on the DC7.
AA. UA, and TW all flew red-eyes on LAX-IDL, using both DC7 and 707 equipment.
UA and TW flew red-eyes on SFO-IDL on the DC7.

(American and TWA actually charged a premium to fly the 707; no one flew a red-eye BOS flight.)
 
ORDPlanesTrains
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Mon Oct 05, 2020 3:00 am

cedarjet wrote:
On a personal note, the really brutal redeyes are only partial transcon but full redeye eg LAX DFW, LAX ORD, only 3h in the air but if you take off late enough eg 2300, you’re landing in daylight eg 0500 but only maybe slept an hour. BRUTAL.


Completely agree that the mid-con redeye is brutal! Even though I live in Chicago, I fly Delta. Since my biggest client is in SoCal, I would end up taking the red-eye to MSP, DTW or ATL, then take the connecting flight to ORD/MDW. That takes it to another level on the Brutal scale. I honestly do not miss those.
 
NZ801
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Mon Oct 05, 2020 4:44 am

masseybrown wrote:
One of my favorite's was TW502/503, a Super Constellation, which operated well into the jet age from IDL/JFK to CLE (with sometimes a stop in MKC) to LAX then SFO. It was a red-eye in both directions and charged nightcoach fares, which, minus the jet surcharge, were a huge bargain if you didn't mind loud, low, and slow. It carried very good loads.


“Loud, low and slow” is a great slogan!

It has its appeal in these fast paced times.
 
PSAatSAN4Ever
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Mon Oct 05, 2020 3:42 pm

In the early days of flying, airlines flew routes more akin to railroad lines, with most everything being a "milk-run" type route. This meant, just like a train, there was a LOT of flying at night, and a lot of stops along the way. This was simply the limitation of the technology, with traveling the vast distances across the United States requiring lots of refueling.

The jet age, of course, changed that completely, but "Airline Regulation" told airlines what routes they could fly, when they could fly them, and what they had to charge. Bigger airlines got preferential treatment and prized routes, but at the end of the day, the airlines were highly restricted on their routes and times.

And then came deregulation, when all restrictions were off. Airlines dropped cities like Bakersfield (BFL) so fast there were papers still flying in the air from how fast United pulled out in late 1978. Airlines were free to respond to market forces, and many discovered "red-eyes" were a great way to utilize an airplane that otherwise would have just been sitting around, allowing to operate to a hub airport for the morning bank of departures.

If I remember correctly, there was an attempt at a "red-eye" hub by Eastern (?) at Houston (?), where between the hours of 2 AM and 4 AM, a whole bank of flights arrived and then departed, to both the east and west coast. It was supposed to be a People-Express No-Frills Ultra-Cheap time to fly, and it existed for a short while, but it didn't last long. Can someone comment on this further?

Ironically enough, all the talk we have about SAN's 11:30 PM curfew, it really only affects three American Midwest/Central Time Zone hubs: MSP, DFW, and IAH. There's really no demand for intra-California or intra-Pacific Time Zone flights leaving after the curfew time, and the same is true for Mountain Time Zone airports like DEN and PHX (neither have a middle-of-the-night hub system). Eastern Time Zone airports all have their red-eye flights depart the west coast in the 9:00 - 11:00 PM time, and our Europe flights all are gone by early evening. That leaves only those three hub cities for which a 1:00 AM departure isn't possible.

But it could be done if the demand was there, because SAN-ORD has been done as a red-eye by both United and American over the years (I know, because I have flown both!), and both filled planes that departed at 11 PM and arrived at ORD around 4:30 AM.

The fascinating thing about taking a red-eye from San Diego is that quite often, you are literally the first arrival of the day!. I have been the first arrival at ORD on both UA and AA, as well as at ATL, EWR, DTW, and BOS. Utterly fascinating to watch the airport come alive!!
 
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OzarkD9S
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Mon Oct 05, 2020 4:15 pm

PSAatSAN4Ever wrote:

If I remember correctly, there was an attempt at a "red-eye" hub by Eastern (?) at Houston (?), where between the hours of 2 AM and 4 AM, a whole bank of flights arrived and then departed, to both the east and west coast. It was supposed to be a People-Express No-Frills Ultra-Cheap time to fly, and it existed for a short while, but it didn't last long. Can someone comment on this further?[


I ran across this old advert for that operation:

http://www.departedflights.com/EAmiracleofflight85.html
"My soul is in the sky". -Pyramus- A Midsummer's Night Dream
 
EWRandMDW
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Mon Oct 05, 2020 5:09 pm

In the mid 1980s the original PeoplExpress operated late night flights between Newark and Florida cities. Flights would depart Newark shortly before midnight and arrive sometime between 2:00 and 3:00 am, depending on the destination. Those planes would then return to Newark arriving before 7:00 am. Not traditional red-eyes, but I bet plenty of passengers had red eyes when they deplaned!
 
OB1504
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Mon Oct 05, 2020 7:44 pm

WidebodyPTV wrote:
Today, the overall popularity of redeyes is largely a derivative of utilization and repositioning. E.g. NK can "create" a CLE-LAX trip out of an airplane that would otherwise sit idle for 10 hours, or AA can move a plane that would otherwise just sit at LAS to DFW, and create a prime revenue opportunity for it in the morning (given that the change in time zones creates an imbalance). The popularity with these flights among passengers lies almost entirely with the cost (yes, there are some exceptions) -- redeye flights are generally the least expensive option. For these reasons, redeye flights were disproportionately cut following the pandemic, just as they were during the Great Recession.


Travel between North and South America is a notable exception to this, with many airlines leaving aircraft on the ground all day because the red eye itineraries can command a greater revenue premium and the airline can make more money by having the airplane wait until nightfall to make its return flight.
 
Max Q
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Mon Oct 05, 2020 8:55 pm

Red eyes are very useful, as a passenger if you can get some sleep on board you’ve saved a day of travel and may be able to arrive rested enough to go to work and / or have a useful day.


As a pilot and long time night owl I’ve found certain red eyes to be more pleasant than day flights, there’s less traffic and radio chatter, usually less convective activity, and direct routing is commonly granted. In short, very peaceful as we like it


Transcons, Hawaii- west coast are good examples of the above, notably theres not too much of a time change on these


Next are north- south- north South America flights, they’re more tiring due to the stage length but importantly there’s not much time change


The most exhausting for me was the red eye department HNL in the afternoon non stop to EWR, a long night flight departing very late on your body time and with lots of morning sun rising in your face as you get closer


That’s always tiring, the glare is a big adjustment after many hours of darkness, always easier to land while it’s still dark


To Europe from NY wasn’t too bad if you left at a reasonable hour it just felt like a late night, later departures were more tiring but most fatiguing for me was the daylight return where you start your day around 0100 body time


Biggest factor in how you feel is time change and if you can stay fairly close to your normal home schedule, whatever that is
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


GGg
 
jfrworld
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Tue Oct 06, 2020 2:11 am

MIflyer12 wrote:
For the second time in five minutes I'll point somebody to Departed Flights. AA timetables as far back as 1969. Eastern to 1972. DL 1973, Pan Am 1973, TWA 1972, UA 1972.

http://www.departedflights.com/timetables.html


If you find his question tedious, then don't answer it. You aren't obligated. Relax and let him ask his question.
 
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Francoflier
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Tue Oct 06, 2020 3:49 am

I'd say redeyes became quite a lot more prevalent since the nation started legalizing marijuana.
I'll do my own airline. With Blackjack. And hookers. In fact, forget the airline.
 
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RWA380
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Tue Oct 06, 2020 3:57 am

wedgetail737 wrote:
Was America West the only airline that had "red eyes" from East to West through LAS? I think they were called "Nite Flites." I took one and ended up at OAK at 3:30am.


I think HP was not the first one, EA had the moonlight flights thru IAH on the A-300's, with no checked bags as they carried the belly full of cargo. But I too landed in PDX at 3:30am a lot of times, as I could leave LAX at 11pm. If I went to PDX, the connect was quick, but also did JFK-LAS-PDX & MIA-LAS-PDX. Maybe close in time, the later part of the 80's? I also like flying to the East coast with a 6am arrival for the morning flights to Europe & land in the evening & go to bed right away.
707 717 720 727-1/2 737-1/2/3/4/5/6/7/8/9 747-1/2/3/4 757-2/3 767-2/3/4 777-2/3 DC8 DC9 MD80/2/7/8 D10-1/3/4 M11 L10-1/2/5 A300/310/320
AA AC AQ AS BA BD BN CO CS DL EA EZ HA HG HP KL KN MP MW NK NW OZ PA PS QX RC RH RW SA TG TW UA US VS WA WC WN WP YS 8M
 
dfwjim1
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Tue Oct 06, 2020 5:55 pm

wedgetail737 wrote:
Was America West the only airline that had "red eyes" from East to West through LAS? I think they were called "Nite Flites." I took one and ended up at OAK at 3:30am.


When worked at FEDEX in Oakland I used to see this flight land and wonder who would be flying at that time of the morning.
Last edited by dfwjim1 on Tue Oct 06, 2020 6:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
dfwjim1
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Tue Oct 06, 2020 5:59 pm

wedgetail737 wrote:
Was America West the only airline that had "red eyes" from East to West through LAS? I think they were called "Nite Flites." I took one and ended up at OAK at 3:30am.


When I worked at FEDEX in Oakland I used to see this flight land and wonder who would be flying at that time of the morning.
 
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tjwgrr
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Tue Oct 06, 2020 8:36 pm

seat1a wrote:
Growing up in Detroit in the 70's Delta (and Eastern) always had NC (Night Coach!) flights to TPA, MIA, MCO, and FLL. Flights left usually between 10pm and 11pm. That considered a red-eye?


You bring back fond memories. As a young buck I flew with family on a trip to Disney World back in 1972 or 1973. Flew DTW-ATL-MCO. Departed DTW (DC-8-61) around 10:00 pm, arrived ATL 11:30 pm or so, then departed ATL (brand new 727-200) around 12:30 am arriving MCO about 2:00 am.
Direct KNOBS, maintain 2700' until established on the localizer, cleared ILS runway 26 left approach.
 
seat1a
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Tue Oct 06, 2020 11:53 pm

tjwgrr wrote:
seat1a wrote:
Growing up in Detroit in the 70's Delta (and Eastern) always had NC (Night Coach!) flights to TPA, MIA, MCO, and FLL. Flights left usually between 10pm and 11pm. That considered a red-eye?


You bring back fond memories. As a young buck I flew with family on a trip to Disney World back in 1972 or 1973. Flew DTW-ATL-MCO. Departed DTW (DC-8-61) around 10:00 pm, arrived ATL 11:30 pm or so, then departed ATL (brand new 727-200) around 12:30 am arriving MCO about 2:00 am.


Yes! And one other thing ... Were all those Eastern flights (around 1977/78/79) between TPA and MCO in the 10pm-1am time frame NC flights, too!? I think I counted 12 flights at one point.
 
Italianflyer
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Tue Oct 06, 2020 11:59 pm

The EA Moonlighting Special venture was pretty brilliant. CF Air Freight bought the belly space and covered operating costs....so revenue from the cabin was gravy. CO was an operational mess at the time so retaliation wasn't a concern. The EA Alum I have flown with said it was a circus; weirdness galore.

IIRC they expanded the program to include 727s adding cities like MSP, STL, CLT etc. A second CF Freight hub was established at ORD for a while.
 
dstblj52
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Wed Oct 07, 2020 12:39 am

dfwjim1 wrote:
wedgetail737 wrote:
Was America West the only airline that had "red eyes" from East to West through LAS? I think they were called "Nite Flites." I took one and ended up at OAK at 3:30am.


When I worked at FEDEX in Oakland I used to see this flight land and wonder who would be flying at that time of the morning.

People who searched by price and bought whatever was cheapest
 
TW870
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Wed Oct 07, 2020 1:04 am

aemoreira1981 wrote:
Airlineroute yesterday published a flashback to 1959 on that. Look at what AA, NW, TW, and UA flew on the NS59 schedule: https://www.routesonline.com/news/38/ai ... -schedule/

NW flew a red-eye on ANC-IDL and SEA-IDL on the DC7.
AA. UA, and TW all flew red-eyes on LAX-IDL, using both DC7 and 707 equipment.
UA and TW flew red-eyes on SFO-IDL on the DC7.

(American and TWA actually charged a premium to fly the 707; no one flew a red-eye BOS flight.)


Thanks for posting that link! Yep, the NW flight looks like it was once a week on a DC-7C 11h2m non-stop. Must have been the one day of the week that the Asia flight went direct on the polar routing instead of picking up additional passengers further west in the US. Note that Northwest didn't take delivery of the first DC-8s until 1960, so everything to Asia was still on the DC-7C.

It is also interesting that the "reverse redeye" east-west all-nighers were some of the last piston transcons. United offered a DC-7 reverse redeye on IDL-SFO and American a DC-7 on IDL-LAX. Note that in July, 1959, everyone was scrambling to get jets onto the transcon markets. It looks like the DC-8 wasn't quite ready for United yet since their whole transcon schedule is on DC-7s. TW must have just gotten those 707s, as in the link I posted above for February 1959, all transcons were on the Super-G and the Starliner.
 
2travel2know2
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Wed Oct 07, 2020 1:57 am

Probably by now, it'll be time to see westbound red eyes from NYC and Florida to LAS/SFO/LAX/SEA, from ORD/MSP to MIA/FLL/MCO/TPA and between NYC/BOS and MIA/FLL.
At least for Thanksgiving plus a couple of weekends before Xmas and after New Year.
With an attractive airfare, surely there'd be passengers willing to depart after 0100 from NYC/BOS in order to arrive California and Florida before 0500.
I'm not on CM's payroll.
 
dfwjim1
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Wed Oct 07, 2020 8:33 pm

A bit off topic but I visit Brazil once a year and I have noticed that airlines in that country have many domestic flights that leave after 12 AM and arrive before 5 am.
 
winGl3t
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Wed Oct 07, 2020 9:27 pm

dfwjim1 wrote:
A bit off topic but I visit Brazil once a year and I have noticed that airlines in that country have many domestic flights that leave after 12 AM and arrive before 5 am.


Exactly. We have a large amount of red-eyes from our southern hubs in GRU, VCP, GIG, BSB to North and Northeast (cities such as SSA, MCZ, AJU, REC, JPA, NAT, JDO, VDC, FOR, THE, SLZ, BEL, MAO).

While many do not cross time zones it is an extremely popular product of Brazilian airlines to improve aircraft utilization, offer lower fares and improve cargo revenue. The schedule pattern allows departing the hubs at 10-11pm, arriving at destination around 2-4am and landing on the first banks at the hubs at 6-7am.
 
flyingqueen
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Re: Red eyes in the United States - when did they become common?

Thu Oct 08, 2020 3:02 am

Is there any way of seeing red-eye vs. non red-eye profitability in the U.S.?

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