That's the interesting thing. DOT's order shows U.S.-Ireland traffic as 56% non-stop O&D and just 15% with a connection in Europe (+2 points more with connections both U.S. and Ireland). DUB hasn't (thus far) worked as a powerhouse for European connections.
So what happens to the other 21%?
30% sounds about right, from what has been mentioned on the Irish threads. I guess the unaccounted for traffic might be to the UK? Canadian and FR self-transfers would be counted as O&D.
If it's 56% O&D then thats 44% connecting to Uk or EU? That makes the DUB hub a great success ....
Does that 56% include or exclude connections on the US side from UA and B6?
The document from Ishrion's first-post link, the one I cited, shows 27% as connecting in the U.S.
People doing self-connects are chasing the absolute lowest fare with little regard for the value of their time. You can't build a full-service airline around people who chase garbage fares. Norwegian couldn't even build a TATL ULCC around that.
Spend some time with the U.S. DOT doc - or other well-researched sources of public data, and see if you still want to argue the DUB connecting hub is a great success for TATL travel. Perhaps look at fractions of connecting traffic at LHR/CDG/AMS/ATL/DFW/CLT for context. (IMHO, unless [email protected]
is passenger-limited, instead of slot-limited, they could just upgauge the LHR-Continental flights instead of trying to make DUB a big connecting hub.)
DUB is actually a much better place to serve as a connecting center than LHR and the reason is almost solely based on costs than anything else. Just as the DL/AF/KL alliance use AMS and ATL as the principle transmit hubs you will likely see PHL and DUB be the principle transit hubs for the AA-IAG alliance. Sure LHR has a lot of demand and connection opportunities but its also a much more expensive place to operate from.
If there is anything AA mgmt is really good it, its at making money on connecting itineraries. This was Kirby and Parker's stock and trade at USAirways. What does a connecting itinerary require: A competitive schedule (compared to other connecting routings) and a competitive price for the class of service. This isn't about selling rock bottom fares (that's what Icelandair is about). This is about selling BOS-HAM or MSP-BER that gets you in at about the same time as DL/KL or UA/LH does for around the same price.
Remember, the customer (be it either for personal or corporate reasons) is comparing those two variables and they are looking at departure time and arrival time and final price. The soft things come in later...and I will discuss below. So based on the time/price factor...what does DUB offer:
1. Lower operating costs (EI's operating costs give the JV more room to price competitively)
2. Lower airport costs/Taxes (DUB's operation is much lower and this is much bigger than you might think....remember the final price has to be roughly the same, so having a lower airport fee and lower tax means the JV gets to raise the fare. This is why AA loves to push you through CLT and DL through ATL...they keep more of the ticket price) This is super true with J class where the LHR luxury class tax is stupid-crazy.
3. DUB's location makes routings more competitive, especially to UK.
Now there are some soft things that come into play:
1. Real F class. If you want to fly First, then yes...you essentially need to route yourself through LHR, CDG, ZRH or FRA.
2. Onboard service. Are there folks who will pay more for BA's better service than EI? Yes...but more will probably be okay with regular AA/EI.
3. Lounges. No question...LHR has better airport services and if this is your bag, then you probably would rather connect. I will admit that I double connected once from the South of France just so that I could hit up the Virgin Clubhouse. Was it worth the extra £100? On the surface,no but I got to meet Annette Bening and that was cool.
4. Frequent Flyer Benefits. If EI offers the same OneWorld benefits, then this becomes a tie with LHR.