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N649DL
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Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 12:32 am

I found an article looking up MEM terminal photos from when DL still hubbed there last decade: https://www.memphisdailynews.com/news/2 ... d-go/print

Now it's obvious that MEM was geographically close to DL's fortress hub and HQ in ATL. After merging with NW, MEM was quickly rebranded into a full on DL hub and even continued to serve MEM-AMS on a 763ER. Transferring through MEM in 2011 on LAX-MEM-EWR the concourse was absolutely jam packed and buzzing with people and flights prior to the evening bank as well. Flight from LAX-MEM was on a A320 and MEM-EWR was on a E170. There was even a dinner service in F on the MEM-EWR leg as well.

However, I forgot that ultimately what killed the MEM hub for DL were its high costs for DL to maintain. That and oil prices were higher after NW merger for a while between 2010-2013.

I was wondering what were DL's initial intentions at MEM? The hub certainly got rebranded quickly, but should the airport had worked with them to lower costs, do you think the MEM could've hung around for a while? Or was it basically dead in the water from day one (and the quick rebranding of the airport was just a courtesy?) I guess my other question would be if MEM's costs went down, did the hub setup that DL inherited from NW have potential to be profitable at all both from an O&D and/or connecting standpoint? I recall that it seemed like in some ways back then, DL used MEM as a reliever hub for ATL in a similar way STL was a reliever hub for AA at ORD after merging with TWA (and AA's CFO commented in an article last year that leaving STL back in the 2000s was in retrospect a mistake.) Should this had been true in the way that DL used the MEM hub as a reliever wouldn't be terribly surprising. Especially since s*** can easily hit the fan when severe weather hits the ATL hub.

Thoughts? I definitely thought it was a cute little unique hub for DL the only time I went through it.
 
Cubsrule
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 12:38 am

People forget, I think, that MEM is pretty far from ATL even though it’s in an adjacent state. MEM is only 40 miles closer to ATL than CVG, and CVG is a much more vibrant local market. So if DL needed an ATL reliever (it didn’t and doesn’t), CVG made more sense.

Because MEM was a weak local market, there really wasn’t an obvious way to lower the costs of the hub. The heavy banking and consequent huge building footprint for the size of the hub were absolute necessities.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
GSP psgr
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 12:50 am

N649DL wrote:
I found an article looking up MEM terminal photos from when DL still hubbed there last decade: https://www.memphisdailynews.com/news/2 ... d-go/print

Now it's obvious that MEM was geographically close to DL's fortress hub and HQ in ATL. After merging with NW, MEM was quickly rebranded into a full on DL hub and even continued to serve MEM-AMS on a 763ER. Transferring through MEM in 2011 on LAX-MEM-EWR the concourse was absolutely jam packed and buzzing with people and flights prior to the evening bank as well. Flight from LAX-MEM was on a A320 and MEM-EWR was on a E170. There was even a dinner service in F on the MEM-EWR leg as well.

However, I forgot that ultimately what killed the MEM hub for DL were its high costs for DL to maintain. That and oil prices were higher after NW merger for a while between 2010-2013.

I was wondering what were DL's initial intentions at MEM? The hub certainly got rebranded quickly, but should the airport had worked with them to lower costs, do you think the MEM could've hung around for a while? Or was it basically dead in the water from day one (and the quick rebranding of the airport was just a courtesy?) I guess my other question would be if MEM's costs went down, did the hub setup that DL inherited from NW have potential to be profitable at all both from an O&D and/or connecting standpoint? I recall that it seemed like in some ways back then, DL used MEM as a reliever hub for ATL in a similar way STL was a reliever hub for AA at ORD after merging with TWA (and AA's CFO commented in an article last year that leaving STL back in the 2000s was in retrospect a mistake.) Should this had been true in the way that DL used the MEM hub as a reliever wouldn't be terribly surprising. Especially since s*** can easily hit the fan when severe weather hits the ATL hub.

Thoughts? I definitely thought it was a cute little unique hub for DL the only time I went through it.


I don't know how much lower MEM's cost could get-with the exception of the Concourse A RJ expansion, the rest of the terminal was so old it had been paid for several times over, Also, NW didn't pay the bulk of the runway fees at MEM; the FedEx superhub was a far, far bigger flying operation.
 
Iloveboeing
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 12:56 am

Cubsrule wrote:
People forget, I think, that MEM is pretty far from ATL even though it’s in an adjacent state. MEM is only 40 miles closer to ATL than CVG, and CVG is a much more vibrant local market. So if DL needed an ATL reliever (it didn’t and doesn’t), CVG made more sense.

Because MEM was a weak local market, there really wasn’t an obvious way to lower the costs of the hub. The heavy banking and consequent huge building footprint for the size of the hub were absolute necessities.


And yet DL cut CVG as a hub as well. I believe that when DL merged with NW, they had the full intention of gutting MEM and CVG. IIRC, they “promised” to keep all the existing hubs for awhile, but after that, that was the end.
 
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LAX772LR
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 12:57 am

MEM served NW well, as its only gateway in the southeast/southcentral after the closure of the TPA hub/focus operation.

For DL, it was unnecessary, as the local O&D was extremely weak for a global carrier, and the lack of major biz HQs didn't do wonders for the yield.

Those were strikes 1 and 2,... and while the hub survived the fuel insanity of '08 and the ensuing recession of '09, the airlines' further move away from 50seaters (bread & butter of the MEM operation) essentially sealed its fate as a third and final strike, in the upcoming years.
Last edited by LAX772LR on Sun Jan 24, 2021 12:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
I myself, suspect a more prosaic motive... ~Thranduil
 
Lootess
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 12:58 am

MEM did connect to cities like Lubbock. It had that going, the west Texas market and easy connect to the AMS hub.

Some flights at the time of the closure made the move over to ATL easily like FSM and COU.

Retiring more CRJs and the Saabs also played into its closure.
 
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drerx7
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:05 am

Lootess wrote:
MEM did connect to cities like Lubbock. It had that going, the west Texas market and easy connect to the AMS hub.

Some flights at the time of the closure made the move over to ATL easily like FSM and COU.

Retiring more CRJs and the Saabs also played into its closure.

Yea...but those markets were easily and already connected via DFW and IAH. I would bet the Skyteam market was less than 10%. By that time the DFW Delta hub had been gutted.
HOUSTON, TEXAS
 
Weatherwatcher1
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:06 am

Look at the GDP of the Memphis metro area

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of ... eas_by_GDP

It ranks behind Jacksonville, Oklahoma City and New Orleans at the 48th largest economy for a city in the US. The only cities lower than 21 on the list with a connecting hub are SLC and HNL.

It’s hard to justify a hub without some decent yielding O/D. Memphis doesn’t have a strong enough local economy to keep a hub going. Geography is convenient for connections, which is why FedEx is there. A local hub needs a decently sized local economy.
 
Cubsrule
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:09 am

Iloveboeing wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
People forget, I think, that MEM is pretty far from ATL even though it’s in an adjacent state. MEM is only 40 miles closer to ATL than CVG, and CVG is a much more vibrant local market. So if DL needed an ATL reliever (it didn’t and doesn’t), CVG made more sense.

Because MEM was a weak local market, there really wasn’t an obvious way to lower the costs of the hub. The heavy banking and consequent huge building footprint for the size of the hub were absolute necessities.


And yet DL cut CVG as a hub as well. I believe that when DL merged with NW, they had the full intention of gutting MEM and CVG. IIRC, they “promised” to keep all the existing hubs for awhile, but after that, that was the end.


Well, of course. Without cutting hubs, what was the point of the merger? There was essentially no fleet synergy other than scads of CR2s and a motley crew of 752s.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
ContinentalEWR
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:22 am

MEM and CVG were redundant in the expanded DL once the merger with NW was completed. Geographic proximity to ATL and DTW respectively wasn't really the issue as much as revenue and yield and the premium DL could just as well capture transferring pax through ATL and DTW given their size (and MSP too when looking at CVG specifically). MEM specifically did not have a sufficiently large O&D corporate base to make it viable. All that said though, MEM did serve NW well but NW was a different airline with a different footprint.
 
CMHARJ
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:23 am

When DL/NW proposed to the government to get approval of the merger, they pretty much had to say what the politicians wanted to hear, which was "no hubs will close" and service will "compliment each other and not be downgraded". DL/NW couldn't bluntly say, we're too big and will eventually need to downsize and let nature take its course. Let's look at reality. DL now has DTW, CVG, MEM, and ATL basically sitting on top of each other as hubs. At the beginning of the merger, DL had to follow through on their merger promise, which was no closure of hubs. CVG and MEM didn't really serve any unique markets that DTW and ATL didn't serve. Yes, DL connected AMA and LBB to MEM, but unless you're going eastbound, there's no incentive to take that flight. There were no MSP or SLC flights to head north or west from AMA and LBB. Plus, those markets already had AA and CO/UA loyalists.
DL was not going to reduce service at ATL nor DTW to relocate them to CVG and MEM to balance them out. MEM already had dirt cheap landing fees due to FedEx. There was not a big local market to sustain MEM service. They only had 3 flight banks and usually 2-3 flights a day to any major city that was more than 2 hours away. When the recession was hitting the airlines full throttle, that was the golden excuse to shrink and eventually dehub MEM and CVG.
 
USAirALB
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:58 am

IIRC, initially after the merger, DL announced the launch/resumption of some cities from MEM (DAL/AMA/MFE/LBB/EVV/YYZ) and I think AMA/MFE/LBB were only served via MEM on DL. I also recall some RJ-only routes were up-gauged to mainline...I remember MEM-CLT went to all A319s/CR9s.

Of course none of that was sustainable in the long-run once you started to retire the CRJ en masse, and considering the corporate climate of MEM and the relative poverty of the region, the hub made little sense. It's worth noting that I believe that MEM was more dependent on EAS-routes than any other hub, think MEM-PAH/PIB/TUP/MSL/GLH. There may have been more. It's telling that none of these cities have service to ATL today. I also remember the concourses being small, congested, and in need of refurbishment. It made little financial sense to bring them up to today's modern standards.
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Dominion301
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 2:02 am

N649DL wrote:
I found an article looking up MEM terminal photos from when DL still hubbed there last decade: https://www.memphisdailynews.com/news/2 ... d-go/print

Now it's obvious that MEM was geographically close to DL's fortress hub and HQ in ATL. After merging with NW, MEM was quickly rebranded into a full on DL hub and even continued to serve MEM-AMS on a 763ER. Transferring through MEM in 2011 on LAX-MEM-EWR the concourse was absolutely jam packed and buzzing with people and flights prior to the evening bank as well. Flight from LAX-MEM was on a A320 and MEM-EWR was on a E170. There was even a dinner service in F on the MEM-EWR leg as well.

However, I forgot that ultimately what killed the MEM hub for DL were its high costs for DL to maintain. That and oil prices were higher after NW merger for a while between 2010-2013.

I was wondering what were DL's initial intentions at MEM? The hub certainly got rebranded quickly, but should the airport had worked with them to lower costs, do you think the MEM could've hung around for a while? Or was it basically dead in the water from day one (and the quick rebranding of the airport was just a courtesy?) I guess my other question would be if MEM's costs went down, did the hub setup that DL inherited from NW have potential to be profitable at all both from an O&D and/or connecting standpoint? I recall that it seemed like in some ways back then, DL used MEM as a reliever hub for ATL in a similar way STL was a reliever hub for AA at ORD after merging with TWA (and AA's CFO commented in an article last year that leaving STL back in the 2000s was in retrospect a mistake.) Should this had been true in the way that DL used the MEM hub as a reliever wouldn't be terribly surprising. Especially since s*** can easily hit the fan when severe weather hits the ATL hub.

Thoughts? I definitely thought it was a cute little unique hub for DL the only time I went through it.


The thing is, as far as airport costs go, (even beyond the landing fees noted above) at the time, MEM was incredibly cheap. The high cost was the MEM hub only had 3 banks a day, requiring staff inefficiency. Outside of bank periods that were 90% of pax traffic, the terminal was a ghost town.
 
MIflyer12
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 2:13 am

CMHARJ wrote:
Yes, DL connected AMA and LBB to MEM...


Did it, at the time of the merger announcement?

The day the merger was announced I looked at NW's MEM schedules. IIRC, of the 102 n/s destinations only two were unserved by DL from ATL. MEM was destined to be toast. The absence of O&D just fortified the argument.
 
WidebodyPTV
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 4:45 am

MEM failed as hub because its local market lacked both volume and dollar amount. The advert of the regional jet, which allowed airlines to fly from smaller, southeastern destinations to distant larger hubs, was the so-called 'nail in the coffin.'

- NW looked at replacing MEM with ATL in the early 1990s (after EA's demise; in fact, NW was awarded EA's ex-DCA assets under the assumption it would relocate MEM to ATL) but lacked the finances.
- In the late 1990s, NW studied relocating MEM to BNA, but ultimately concluded such move was cost prohibitive & NW then reached a deal to expand MEM.
- In the mid-2000s, NW and FL considered merging -- which almost unquestionably would've seen MEM folded into ATL -- but (among other reasons), the finances didn't exist.

It isn't like NW didn't try to make NW work. Among other moves, NW tried to make MEM its Mexican gateway (the only year-round service to MEX & CUN) + serve smaller destinations in the Central/Mountain time zones + it operated hub banks that were time exclusive to MEM (for example, if you wanted to leave LAX at 4PM or MCO at 7PM, MEM was your sole option, as flights to DTW & MSP were dropped).

By the time of the merger, CRJs dominated MEM. Remember, ATL was built with volume -- e.g. operating larger mainline aircraft enabled DL to lower its costs. DL had a huge surplus of 50-seats -- not a big shock that MEM stuck around only until DL resolved it (e.g. it's cheaper to fly the jets than to pay to park them, at least in the short term).

MEM, CVG, STL, CLT, PIT, etc. were small hubs that had largely become obsoleted as the industry consolidated + economics changed. On these forums, the defense & portrayal of these hubs in a positive light is generally done by a.net members upset their hometown/favorite hub went away. E.g. DTW had more than 2x the local traffic and more than 3x the revenue of CVG, yet the CVG fans have long portrayed it as being on equal terms.
 
slcdeltarumd11
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 5:02 am

MEM geographically just wasn't needed enough for delta. Too redundant to be worth a hub and the costs. No one else moved in because it's too low volume and the business travel market is thin. Ulccs will continue to add leisure routes I think and legacy carriers will fly to hubs.
 
JayinKitsap
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 5:12 am

Dominion301 wrote:
Outside of bank periods that were 90% of pax traffic, the terminal was a ghost town.


The real ghost town was after the hub closed. It was 5 active gates, 50 closed.

Remember NW and later DL have MSP too.

It seemed like around 2008 the 737 gained extra range, suddenly AS was doing HNL and Orlando which was too far before, suddenly no point to the hub, just fly from ATL
 
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LAX772LR
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 5:18 am

WidebodyPTV wrote:
MEM, CVG, STL, CLT, PIT, etc. were small hubs that had largely become obsoleted as the industry consolidated + economics changed.

Not really sure how you're throwing CLT into that one.... I'm guessing you meant RDU?
I myself, suspect a more prosaic motive... ~Thranduil
 
WidebodyPTV
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 5:28 am

LAX772LR wrote:
WidebodyPTV wrote:
MEM, CVG, STL, CLT, PIT, etc. were small hubs that had largely become obsoleted as the industry consolidated + economics changed.

Not really sure how you're throwing CLT into that one.... I'm guessing you meant RDU?


Good catch, I meant CLE!
 
TTailedTiger
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 5:52 am

WidebodyPTV wrote:
MEM failed as hub because its local market lacked both volume and dollar amount. The advert of the regional jet, which allowed airlines to fly from smaller, southeastern destinations to distant larger hubs, was the so-called 'nail in the coffin.'

- NW looked at replacing MEM with ATL in the early 1990s (after EA's demise; in fact, NW was awarded EA's ex-DCA assets under the assumption it would relocate MEM to ATL) but lacked the finances.
- In the late 1990s, NW studied relocating MEM to BNA, but ultimately concluded such move was cost prohibitive & NW then reached a deal to expand MEM.
- In the mid-2000s, NW and FL considered merging -- which almost unquestionably would've seen MEM folded into ATL -- but (among other reasons), the finances didn't exist.

It isn't like NW didn't try to make NW work. Among other moves, NW tried to make MEM its Mexican gateway (the only year-round service to MEX & CUN) + serve smaller destinations in the Central/Mountain time zones + it operated hub banks that were time exclusive to MEM (for example, if you wanted to leave LAX at 4PM or MCO at 7PM, MEM was your sole option, as flights to DTW & MSP were dropped).

By the time of the merger, CRJs dominated MEM. Remember, ATL was built with volume -- e.g. operating larger mainline aircraft enabled DL to lower its costs. DL had a huge surplus of 50-seats -- not a big shock that MEM stuck around only until DL resolved it (e.g. it's cheaper to fly the jets than to pay to park them, at least in the short term).

MEM, CVG, STL, CLT, PIT, etc. were small hubs that had largely become obsoleted as the industry consolidated + economics changed. On these forums, the defense & portrayal of these hubs in a positive light is generally done by a.net members upset their hometown/favorite hub went away. E.g. DTW had more than 2x the local traffic and more than 3x the revenue of CVG, yet the CVG fans have long portrayed it as being on equal terms.


You are neglecting the passenger experience. Delta still (or at least before covid) offers CVG and RDU for connections. And those are the two nicest connecting experiences you will find in the US. ATL is always a shoulder to shoulder madhouse and way too much walking is involved at DTW and MSP. I'll never understand why DTW didn't link A and B/C by train. It's an awful experience and doesn't allow for quick connections. A 30 minute connection MCO-RDU-DCA is a breeze.
 
WidebodyPTV
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 6:19 am

TTailedTiger wrote:
WidebodyPTV wrote:
MEM failed as hub because its local market lacked both volume and dollar amount. The advert of the regional jet, which allowed airlines to fly from smaller, southeastern destinations to distant larger hubs, was the so-called 'nail in the coffin.'

- NW looked at replacing MEM with ATL in the early 1990s (after EA's demise; in fact, NW was awarded EA's ex-DCA assets under the assumption it would relocate MEM to ATL) but lacked the finances.
- In the late 1990s, NW studied relocating MEM to BNA, but ultimately concluded such move was cost prohibitive & NW then reached a deal to expand MEM.
- In the mid-2000s, NW and FL considered merging -- which almost unquestionably would've seen MEM folded into ATL -- but (among other reasons), the finances didn't exist.

It isn't like NW didn't try to make NW work. Among other moves, NW tried to make MEM its Mexican gateway (the only year-round service to MEX & CUN) + serve smaller destinations in the Central/Mountain time zones + it operated hub banks that were time exclusive to MEM (for example, if you wanted to leave LAX at 4PM or MCO at 7PM, MEM was your sole option, as flights to DTW & MSP were dropped).

By the time of the merger, CRJs dominated MEM. Remember, ATL was built with volume -- e.g. operating larger mainline aircraft enabled DL to lower its costs. DL had a huge surplus of 50-seats -- not a big shock that MEM stuck around only until DL resolved it (e.g. it's cheaper to fly the jets than to pay to park them, at least in the short term).

MEM, CVG, STL, CLT, PIT, etc. were small hubs that had largely become obsoleted as the industry consolidated + economics changed. On these forums, the defense & portrayal of these hubs in a positive light is generally done by a.net members upset their hometown/favorite hub went away. E.g. DTW had more than 2x the local traffic and more than 3x the revenue of CVG, yet the CVG fans have long portrayed it as being on equal terms.


You are neglecting the passenger experience. Delta still (or at least before covid) offers CVG and RDU for connections. And those are the two nicest connecting experiences you will find in the US. ATL is always a shoulder to shoulder madhouse and way too much walking is involved at DTW and MSP. I'll never understand why DTW didn't link A and B/C by train. It's an awful experience and doesn't allow for quick connections. A 30 minute connection MCO-RDU-DCA is a breeze.


The passenger experience is irrelevant - for the airlines, it’s about what resources generate the most revenue. For the passengers, it’s about what offers the best schedule and price. If this wasn’t true, PIT would still be a hub, people wouldn’t be packing jets to ATL, DFW, etc.
 
TYWoolman
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 12:31 pm

Memphis Hub:
Was for Northwest: leveraging best it can the only asset of the Republic acquisition.
Was for Delta: leveraging best it can the synergy opportunities of the Northwest acquisition.

For Northwest this meant sustainment and expansion. For Delta this meant downsizing and curtailment.

On a side note: I think Anderson upset many at DOT, DOJ and congress and his departure was in part to save some Delta face. AA/B6 psuedo merger approval is a slap in the face to the widget so red.
 
MIflyer12
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 12:53 pm

TTailedTiger wrote:
You are neglecting the passenger experience. Delta still (or at least before covid) offers CVG and RDU for connections. And those are the two nicest connecting experiences you will find in the US. ATL is always a shoulder to shoulder madhouse and way too much walking is involved at DTW and MSP. I'll never understand why DTW didn't link A and B/C by train. It's an awful experience and doesn't allow for quick connections. A 30 minute connection MCO-RDU-DCA is a breeze.


WidebodyPTV responded to this, but I urge you to go into DL's Investor Presentations (from late 2017?) and see how larger gauge improves CASM. 76-seaters are notably cheaper than 50-seaters; small mainline is better than 2-class RJ; medium mainline (A320/738) is again cheaper; large mainline 757/739/321 is again cheaper. There's a chart that shows the step function.

XXX-RDU-XXX can fill a few available seats at the margin to justify routes and frequencies at RDU (to gain RDU high fare business traffic) but running E75+E75 via RDU against A321+A321 routed via ATL is just idiotic from a cost viewpoint. Smaller airports serve local markets. They can't compete on CASM with the megahubs ATL, DFW, CLT.

Yeah yeah yeah CVG had 600 DL flights a day at its peak (and I spent a lot of time connecting in CVG!). But how many of those were on CRJ/CR2? What fraction was short haul? How did DL at CVG compare in daily ASMs with UA at ORD? viewtopic.php?t=350719
 
ContinentalEWR
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:01 pm

WidebodyPTV wrote:
MEM failed as hub because its local market lacked both volume and dollar amount. The advert of the regional jet, which allowed airlines to fly from smaller, southeastern destinations to distant larger hubs, was the so-called 'nail in the coffin.'

- NW looked at replacing MEM with ATL in the early 1990s (after EA's demise; in fact, NW was awarded EA's ex-DCA assets under the assumption it would relocate MEM to ATL) but lacked the finances.
- In the late 1990s, NW studied relocating MEM to BNA, but ultimately concluded such move was cost prohibitive & NW then reached a deal to expand MEM.
- In the mid-2000s, NW and FL considered merging -- which almost unquestionably would've seen MEM folded into ATL -- but (among other reasons), the finances didn't exist.

It isn't like NW didn't try to make NW work. Among other moves, NW tried to make MEM its Mexican gateway (the only year-round service to MEX & CUN) + serve smaller destinations in the Central/Mountain time zones + it operated hub banks that were time exclusive to MEM (for example, if you wanted to leave LAX at 4PM or MCO at 7PM, MEM was your sole option, as flights to DTW & MSP were dropped).

By the time of the merger, CRJs dominated MEM. Remember, ATL was built with volume -- e.g. operating larger mainline aircraft enabled DL to lower its costs. DL had a huge surplus of 50-seats -- not a big shock that MEM stuck around only until DL resolved it (e.g. it's cheaper to fly the jets than to pay to park them, at least in the short term).

MEM, CVG, STL, CLT, PIT, etc. were small hubs that had largely become obsoleted as the industry consolidated + economics changed. On these forums, the defense & portrayal of these hubs in a positive light is generally done by a.net members upset their hometown/favorite hub went away. E.g. DTW had more than 2x the local traffic and more than 3x the revenue of CVG, yet the CVG fans have long portrayed it as being on equal terms.


CLT? CLT was a major hub for USAir, then USAirways and only continued to grow and expand, some of it at the expense of PIT in terms of planes and assets, and given the city's growth and businesses, I am not sure throwing them on a list of "obsolete" hubs is accurate here.
 
ContinentalEWR
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:04 pm

TTailedTiger wrote:
WidebodyPTV wrote:
MEM failed as hub because its local market lacked both volume and dollar amount. The advert of the regional jet, which allowed airlines to fly from smaller, southeastern destinations to distant larger hubs, was the so-called 'nail in the coffin.'

- NW looked at replacing MEM with ATL in the early 1990s (after EA's demise; in fact, NW was awarded EA's ex-DCA assets under the assumption it would relocate MEM to ATL) but lacked the finances.
- In the late 1990s, NW studied relocating MEM to BNA, but ultimately concluded such move was cost prohibitive & NW then reached a deal to expand MEM.
- In the mid-2000s, NW and FL considered merging -- which almost unquestionably would've seen MEM folded into ATL -- but (among other reasons), the finances didn't exist.

It isn't like NW didn't try to make NW work. Among other moves, NW tried to make MEM its Mexican gateway (the only year-round service to MEX & CUN) + serve smaller destinations in the Central/Mountain time zones + it operated hub banks that were time exclusive to MEM (for example, if you wanted to leave LAX at 4PM or MCO at 7PM, MEM was your sole option, as flights to DTW & MSP were dropped).

By the time of the merger, CRJs dominated MEM. Remember, ATL was built with volume -- e.g. operating larger mainline aircraft enabled DL to lower its costs. DL had a huge surplus of 50-seats -- not a big shock that MEM stuck around only until DL resolved it (e.g. it's cheaper to fly the jets than to pay to park them, at least in the short term).

MEM, CVG, STL, CLT, PIT, etc. were small hubs that had largely become obsoleted as the industry consolidated + economics changed. On these forums, the defense & portrayal of these hubs in a positive light is generally done by a.net members upset their hometown/favorite hub went away. E.g. DTW had more than 2x the local traffic and more than 3x the revenue of CVG, yet the CVG fans have long portrayed it as being on equal terms.


You are neglecting the passenger experience. Delta still (or at least before covid) offers CVG and RDU for connections. And those are the two nicest connecting experiences you will find in the US. ATL is always a shoulder to shoulder madhouse and way too much walking is involved at DTW and MSP. I'll never understand why DTW didn't link A and B/C by train. It's an awful experience and doesn't allow for quick connections. A 30 minute connection MCO-RDU-DCA is a breeze.


Not really, no. DL's RDU focus city was mostly about O&D to a fast growing market with an equal balance of sales from / to RDU. It wasn't a connecting hub nor was it intended to be. Sure, DL might have flowed some through there and sold connectivity, but that was not the focus of its operation there, and neither was CVG in the last years of its status as a hub.
 
VMCA787
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:07 pm

TYWoolman wrote:
Memphis Hub:
Was for Northwest: leveraging best it can the only asset of the Republic acquisition.
Was for Delta: leveraging best it can the synergy opportunities of the Northwest acquisition.

For Northwest this meant sustainment and expansion. For Delta this meant downsizing and curtailment.


I am curious as to where you think MEM was the "ONLY ASSET"? Certainly, DTW was an asset that had been allowed to stagnate and simply languish due to lack of investment. NW was prepared to spend money to create a fortress hub. In order for a hub to successful, it has to have the ability to at least "break-even" on its own O/D or preferably make a profit. The problem with MEM was it couldn't do that. It came close when NW had increased the banks of flights. However, shortly after that increase, the price of fuel increased and a recession occurred. So, NW tried to shrink the hub to profitability and that didn't work either. NW was competing with DL on routes through MEM vs ATL. In reality, they couldn't compete based on all the service problems NW was encountering systemwide.
 
TYWoolman
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:34 pm

VMCA787 wrote:
TYWoolman wrote:
Memphis Hub:
Was for Northwest: leveraging best it can the only asset of the Republic acquisition.
Was for Delta: leveraging best it can the synergy opportunities of the Northwest acquisition.

For Northwest this meant sustainment and expansion. For Delta this meant downsizing and curtailment.


I am curious as to where you think MEM was the "ONLY ASSET"? Certainly, DTW was an asset that had been allowed to stagnate and simply languish due to lack of investment. NW was prepared to spend money to create a fortress hub. In order for a hub to successful, it has to have the ability to at least "break-even" on its own O/D or preferably make a profit. The problem with MEM was it couldn't do that. It came close when NW had increased the banks of flights. However, shortly after that increase, the price of fuel increased and a recession occurred. So, NW tried to shrink the hub to profitability and that didn't work either. NW was competing with DL on routes through MEM vs ATL. In reality, they couldn't compete based on all the service problems NW was encountering systemwide.

Honestly, I did not realize Republic had substantial operations in Detroit and Minneapolis for that matter as well as Memphis ( I mean, heck, what did the NW route map look like before '86?, did they simply takeover their archrival?). Anyway, my post should read "....the only southeastern asset of the Republic acquisition."
 
bfitzflyer
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:37 pm

I remember going through MEM the year after the merger and it was a large hub at that point with I believe 5 banks a day and over 400 flights a day. By the time of the DL merger MEM was down to less than half of that and as others have said was heavy on regional jets. DL more or less completed what NW had slowly been doing with MEM over the years.
 
TYWoolman
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:53 pm

bfitzflyer wrote:
I remember going through MEM the year after the merger and it was a large hub at that point with I believe 5 banks a day and over 400 flights a day. By the time of the DL merger MEM was down to less than half of that and as others have said was heavy on regional jets. DL more or less completed what NW had slowly been doing with MEM over the years.


Have to say that I don't think Northwest ever had intentions on completely shuttering the Memphis hub as Delta has done (if that's your implication). Rather, NW most likely jumped on the RJ bandwagon to maximize mainline resources elsewhere and, perhaps, any decrease in capacity there portended by management inevitable involvement in industry alliance/consolidation scenarios.
Last edited by TYWoolman on Sun Jan 24, 2021 2:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Polot
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 1:58 pm

TYWoolman wrote:
bfitzflyer wrote:
I remember going through MEM the year after the merger and it was a large hub at that point with I believe 5 banks a day and over 400 flights a day. By the time of the DL merger MEM was down to less than half of that and as others have said was heavy on regional jets. DL more or less completed what NW had slowly been doing with MEM over the years.


Have to say that I don't think Northwest ever had intentions on completely shuttering the Memphis hub as Deta has done (if that's your implication). Rather, NW most likely jumped on the RJ bandwagon to maximize mainline resources elsewhere and, perhaps, any decrease in capacity there portended by management inevitable involvement in industry alliance/consolidation scenarios.

NW was never going to completely shutter the hub but MEM was a complete afterthought to the airline. They were a distant third in the region to DL/ATL and US/CLT and they essentially resigned themselves to that. Focus going forward was MSP/DTW and NRT overflying with the 787.
 
TYWoolman
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 2:09 pm

Polot wrote:
TYWoolman wrote:
bfitzflyer wrote:
I remember going through MEM the year after the merger and it was a large hub at that point with I believe 5 banks a day and over 400 flights a day. By the time of the DL merger MEM was down to less than half of that and as others have said was heavy on regional jets. DL more or less completed what NW had slowly been doing with MEM over the years.


Have to say that I don't think Northwest ever had intentions on completely shuttering the Memphis hub as Deta has done (if that's your implication). Rather, NW most likely jumped on the RJ bandwagon to maximize mainline resources elsewhere and, perhaps, any decrease in capacity there portended by management inevitable involvement in industry alliance/consolidation scenarios.

NW was never going to completely shutter the hub but MEM was a complete afterthought to the airline. They were a distant third in the region to DL/ATL and US/CLT and they essentially resigned themselves to that. Focus going forward was MSP/DTW and NRT overflying with the 787.


True. And the AA dual Nashville and Raleigh hubs probably took a bit of steam from Memphis' long-term hub prospects and NW focus on investment there, though way earlier than their focus on 787 strategy.
 
bfitzflyer
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 2:29 pm

TYWoolman wrote:
bfitzflyer wrote:
I remember going through MEM the year after the merger and it was a large hub at that point with I believe 5 banks a day and over 400 flights a day. By the time of the DL merger MEM was down to less than half of that and as others have said was heavy on regional jets. DL more or less completed what NW had slowly been doing with MEM over the years.


Have to say that I don't think Northwest ever had intentions on completely shuttering the Memphis hub as Delta has done (if that's your implication). Rather, NW most likely jumped on the RJ bandwagon to maximize mainline resources elsewhere and, perhaps, any decrease in capacity there portended by management inevitable involvement in industry alliance/consolidation scenarios.


Not sure of long term intention, but had been in decline for a long time. Given the route structure of NW, probably would not have completely closed.
 
Lootess
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 2:49 pm

drerx7 wrote:
Lootess wrote:
MEM did connect to cities like Lubbock. It had that going, the west Texas market and easy connect to the AMS hub.

Some flights at the time of the closure made the move over to ATL easily like FSM and COU.

Retiring more CRJs and the Saabs also played into its closure.

Yea...but those markets were easily and already connected via DFW and IAH. I would bet the Skyteam market was less than 10%. By that time the DFW Delta hub had been gutted.


Not exactly true, since MEM had the EAS markets that the other two didn't serve, along with many other profitable southern markets like TLH.

Continental packed up and left, and AA wasn't serving at the time, only DL/NW/US
 
rbavfan
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 2:56 pm

Cubsrule wrote:
Iloveboeing wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
People forget, I think, that MEM is pretty far from ATL even though it’s in an adjacent state. MEM is only 40 miles closer to ATL than CVG, and CVG is a much more vibrant local market. So if DL needed an ATL reliever (it didn’t and doesn’t), CVG made more sense.

Because MEM was a weak local market, there really wasn’t an obvious way to lower the costs of the hub. The heavy banking and consequent huge building footprint for the size of the hub were absolute necessities.


And yet DL cut CVG as a hub as well. I believe that when DL merged with NW, they had the full intention of gutting MEM and CVG. IIRC, they “promised” to keep all the existing hubs for awhile, but after that, that was the end.


Well, of course. Without cutting hubs, what was the point of the merger? There was essentially no fleet synergy other than scads of CR2s and a motley crew of 752s.


And the 757-300's that only NW & CO had in the US
.
 
Cubsrule
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:05 pm

rbavfan wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
Iloveboeing wrote:

And yet DL cut CVG as a hub as well. I believe that when DL merged with NW, they had the full intention of gutting MEM and CVG. IIRC, they “promised” to keep all the existing hubs for awhile, but after that, that was the end.


Well, of course. Without cutting hubs, what was the point of the merger? There was essentially no fleet synergy other than scads of CR2s and a motley crew of 752s.


And the 757-300's that only NW & CO had in the US
.


Again, no synergy. DL has made made good use of many NW-specific aircraft, especially the 330 and 753. Of course, MEM hardly saw those aircraft.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
rbavfan
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:08 pm

Iloveboeing wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
People forget, I think, that MEM is pretty far from ATL even though it’s in an adjacent state. MEM is only 40 miles closer to ATL than CVG, and CVG is a much more vibrant local market. So if DL needed an ATL reliever (it didn’t and doesn’t), CVG made more sense.

Because MEM was a weak local market, there really wasn’t an obvious way to lower the costs of the hub. The heavy banking and consequent huge building footprint for the size of the hub were absolute necessities.


And yet DL cut CVG as a hub as well. I believe that when DL merged with NW, they had the full intention of gutting MEM and CVG. IIRC, they “promised” to keep all the existing hubs for awhile, but after that, that was the end.


CVG had been Delta's hub for years. However Northwest had a lot of tie up with the funds to build up Detroits terminals. Delta had to drop 1 of the 2 and dropping Detroit would have required payback on the loans due to early termination of agreements on Employee numbers and other office space in the area. Similar reason they kept MSP abet with less contract restrictions. The lower restrictions had much to do with a lot of MSP international moved to Detroit. Detroit was better positioned for connections than MSP. If MSP had not had those contracts Delta would have picked CVG over Detroit. This was also well coved in Aviation week & other airline publications from Interviews with Delta execs. The wer very happy with CVG before the move.
Last edited by rbavfan on Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
Cubsrule
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:13 pm

rbavfan wrote:
Iloveboeing wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
People forget, I think, that MEM is pretty far from ATL even though it’s in an adjacent state. MEM is only 40 miles closer to ATL than CVG, and CVG is a much more vibrant local market. So if DL needed an ATL reliever (it didn’t and doesn’t), CVG made more sense.

Because MEM was a weak local market, there really wasn’t an obvious way to lower the costs of the hub. The heavy banking and consequent huge building footprint for the size of the hub were absolute necessities.


And yet DL cut CVG as a hub as well. I believe that when DL merged with NW, they had the full intention of gutting MEM and CVG. IIRC, they “promised” to keep all the existing hubs for awhile, but after that, that was the end.


CVG had been Delta's hub for years. However Northwest had a lot of tie up with the funds to build up Detroits terminals. Delta had to drop 1 of the 2 and dropping Detroit would have required payback on the loans due to early termination of agreements on Employee numbers and other office space in the area. Similar reason they kept MSP abet with less contract restrictions. The lower restrictions had much to do with a lot of MSP international moved to Detroit. Detroit was better positioned for connections than MSP. If MSP had not had those contracts Delta would have picked CVG over Detroit..


I’m not sure that’s right. Remember that the merger came right at the time that tar sands were the “next big thing” in oil production, and a tremendous amount of traffic into the Dakotas and Alberta flowed over MSP. MSP has a ton of corporate traffic too.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
rbavfan
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:19 pm

Cubsrule wrote:
rbavfan wrote:
Iloveboeing wrote:

And yet DL cut CVG as a hub as well. I believe that when DL merged with NW, they had the full intention of gutting MEM and CVG. IIRC, they “promised” to keep all the existing hubs for awhile, but after that, that was the end.


CVG had been Delta's hub for years. However Northwest had a lot of tie up with the funds to build up Detroits terminals. Delta had to drop 1 of the 2 and dropping Detroit would have required payback on the loans due to early termination of agreements on Employee numbers and other office space in the area. Similar reason they kept MSP abet with less contract restrictions. The lower restrictions had much to do with a lot of MSP international moved to Detroit. Detroit was better positioned for connections than MSP. If MSP had not had those contracts Delta would have picked CVG over Detroit..


I’m not sure that’s right. Remember that the merger came right at the time that tar sands were the “next big thing” in oil production, and a tremendous amount of traffic into the Dakotas and Alberta flowed over MSP. MSP has a ton of corporate traffic too.



Yes but as I stated it was well documented that Detroit was piced over CVG because the cancellation of the agreement would be to expensive and 1 had to close. Family were stockholders in Delta as long as I can remember. There wer comments in some of those about CVG vs DTW. Cost won out as CVG had a larger portion of the US population within a 2 hour flight time vs DTW operations at the time.
 
rbavfan
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:24 pm

WidebodyPTV wrote:
TTailedTiger wrote:
WidebodyPTV wrote:
MEM failed as hub because its local market lacked both volume and dollar amount. The advert of the regional jet, which allowed airlines to fly from smaller, southeastern destinations to distant larger hubs, was the so-called 'nail in the coffin.'

- NW looked at replacing MEM with ATL in the early 1990s (after EA's demise; in fact, NW was awarded EA's ex-DCA assets under the assumption it would relocate MEM to ATL) but lacked the finances.
- In the late 1990s, NW studied relocating MEM to BNA, but ultimately concluded such move was cost prohibitive & NW then reached a deal to expand MEM.
- In the mid-2000s, NW and FL considered merging -- which almost unquestionably would've seen MEM folded into ATL -- but (among other reasons), the finances didn't exist.

It isn't like NW didn't try to make NW work. Among other moves, NW tried to make MEM its Mexican gateway (the only year-round service to MEX & CUN) + serve smaller destinations in the Central/Mountain time zones + it operated hub banks that were time exclusive to MEM (for example, if you wanted to leave LAX at 4PM or MCO at 7PM, MEM was your sole option, as flights to DTW & MSP were dropped).

By the time of the merger, CRJs dominated MEM. Remember, ATL was built with volume -- e.g. operating larger mainline aircraft enabled DL to lower its costs. DL had a huge surplus of 50-seats -- not a big shock that MEM stuck around only until DL resolved it (e.g. it's cheaper to fly the jets than to pay to park them, at least in the short term).

MEM, CVG, STL, CLT, PIT, etc. were small hubs that had largely become obsoleted as the industry consolidated + economics changed. On these forums, the defense & portrayal of these hubs in a positive light is generally done by a.net members upset their hometown/favorite hub went away. E.g. DTW had more than 2x the local traffic and more than 3x the revenue of CVG, yet the CVG fans have long portrayed it as being on equal terms.


You are neglecting the passenger experience. Delta still (or at least before covid) offers CVG and RDU for connections. And those are the two nicest connecting experiences you will find in the US. ATL is always a shoulder to shoulder madhouse and way too much walking is involved at DTW and MSP. I'll never understand why DTW didn't link A and B/C by train. It's an awful experience and doesn't allow for quick connections. A 30 minute connection MCO-RDU-DCA is a breeze.


The passenger experience is irrelevant - for the airlines, it’s about what resources generate the most revenue. For the passengers, it’s about what offers the best schedule and price. If this wasn’t true, PIT would still be a hub, people wouldn’t be packing jets to ATL, DFW, etc.


Be honest here. The reason ATL & DFW hubs thoughput of traffic is so high is because AA controls DFW & DL controls ATL (& DTW) without others being able to compete there they can charge higher prices for O & D than compeditors & get away with it. 90% control over cost on those 2. United likewise has that at Newark & wish they had that at Denver as well.
 
Cubsrule
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:29 pm

rbavfan wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
rbavfan wrote:

CVG had been Delta's hub for years. However Northwest had a lot of tie up with the funds to build up Detroits terminals. Delta had to drop 1 of the 2 and dropping Detroit would have required payback on the loans due to early termination of agreements on Employee numbers and other office space in the area. Similar reason they kept MSP abet with less contract restrictions. The lower restrictions had much to do with a lot of MSP international moved to Detroit. Detroit was better positioned for connections than MSP. If MSP had not had those contracts Delta would have picked CVG over Detroit..


I’m not sure that’s right. Remember that the merger came right at the time that tar sands were the “next big thing” in oil production, and a tremendous amount of traffic into the Dakotas and Alberta flowed over MSP. MSP has a ton of corporate traffic too.



Yes but as I stated it was well documented that Detroit was piced over CVG because the cancellation of the agreement would be to expensive and 1 had to close. Family were stockholders in Delta as long as I can remember. There wer comments in some of those about CVG vs DTW. Cost won out as CVG had a larger portion of the US population within a 2 hour flight time vs DTW operations at the time.


Why would any rational airline pick CVG (closer to ATL, smaller local market) over DTW regardless of any obligations to DTW?
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
rbavfan
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:37 pm

VMCA787 wrote:
TYWoolman wrote:
Memphis Hub:
Was for Northwest: leveraging best it can the only asset of the Republic acquisition.
Was for Delta: leveraging best it can the synergy opportunities of the Northwest acquisition.

For Northwest this meant sustainment and expansion. For Delta this meant downsizing and curtailment.


I am curious as to where you think MEM was the "ONLY ASSET"? Certainly, DTW was an asset that had been allowed to stagnate and simply languish due to lack of investment. NW was prepared to spend money to create a fortress hub. In order for a hub to successful, it has to have the ability to at least "break-even" on its own O/D or preferably make a profit. The problem with MEM was it couldn't do that. It came close when NW had increased the banks of flights. However, shortly after that increase, the price of fuel increased and a recession occurred. So, NW tried to shrink the hub to profitability and that didn't work either. NW was competing with DL on routes through MEM vs ATL. In reality, they couldn't compete based on all the service problems NW was encountering systemwide.


Agree with this
 
CRJ200flyer
Posts: 188
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:45 pm

rbavfan wrote:
Iloveboeing wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
People forget, I think, that MEM is pretty far from ATL even though it’s in an adjacent state. MEM is only 40 miles closer to ATL than CVG, and CVG is a much more vibrant local market. So if DL needed an ATL reliever (it didn’t and doesn’t), CVG made more sense.

Because MEM was a weak local market, there really wasn’t an obvious way to lower the costs of the hub. The heavy banking and consequent huge building footprint for the size of the hub were absolute necessities.


And yet DL cut CVG as a hub as well. I believe that when DL merged with NW, they had the full intention of gutting MEM and CVG. IIRC, they “promised” to keep all the existing hubs for awhile, but after that, that was the end.


CVG had been Delta's hub for years. However Northwest had a lot of tie up with the funds to build up Detroits terminals. Delta had to drop 1 of the 2 and dropping Detroit would have required payback on the loans due to early termination of agreements on Employee numbers and other office space in the area. Similar reason they kept MSP abet with less contract restrictions. The lower restrictions had much to do with a lot of MSP international moved to Detroit. Detroit was better positioned for connections than MSP. If MSP had not had those contracts Delta would have picked CVG over Detroit. This was also well coved in Aviation week & other airline publications from Interviews with Delta execs. The wer very happy with CVG before the move.


Why in the world does this idea keep coming up that Delta would’ve picked CVG over DTW. That makes zero sense. In the book “Glory Lost and Found,” the authors talk about how CVG was struggling throughout the 2000s, losing Delta money, and prior to the merger was already being trimmed down over and over trying to right-size it.

Separately, metro Detroit population is 4.3 million. Cincinnati is 2.1 million. DTW had a decade old beautiful facility at the time of the merger while CVG had a mixture of older facilities. Why do we keep rehashing this!?
 
rbavfan
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:47 pm

Cubsrule wrote:
rbavfan wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:

I’m not sure that’s right. Remember that the merger came right at the time that tar sands were the “next big thing” in oil production, and a tremendous amount of traffic into the Dakotas and Alberta flowed over MSP. MSP has a ton of corporate traffic too.



Yes but as I stated it was well documented that Detroit was piced over CVG because the cancellation of the agreement would be to expensive and 1 had to close. Family were stockholders in Delta as long as I can remember. There wer comments in some of those about CVG vs DTW. Cost won out as CVG had a larger portion of the US population within a 2 hour flight time vs DTW operations at the time.


Why would any rational airline pick CVG (closer to ATL, smaller local market) over DTW regardless of any obligations to DTW?


Back then CVG was a much bigger O& D than it is now. They also had full Customs/FIS that had lots of unused capacity making for much faster connections than DTW.
 
PANAMsterdam
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:54 pm

Image
The good ol' days of Memphis.
Every country has an airline. The world has Pan Am.
 
RDUDDJI
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 3:57 pm

CRJ200flyer wrote:

Separately, metro Detroit population is 4.3 million. Cincinnati is 2.1 million. DTW had a decade old beautiful facility at the time of the merger while CVG had a mixture of older facilities. Why do we keep rehashing this!?


Actually Detroit's CSA is 5.34 mil (Cincy: 2.2).

Source: censusreporter.org (2019 info)
Sometimes we don't realize the good times when we're in them
 
CRJ200flyer
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 4:02 pm

RDUDDJI wrote:
CRJ200flyer wrote:

Separately, metro Detroit population is 4.3 million. Cincinnati is 2.1 million. DTW had a decade old beautiful facility at the time of the merger while CVG had a mixture of older facilities. Why do we keep rehashing this!?


Actually Detroit's CSA is 5.34 mil (Cincy: 2.2).

Source: censusreporter.org (2019 info)


I was stating the MSA figures from good old Wikipedia, not CSA, but regardless, significantly larger than Cincy!
 
dstblj52
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 4:11 pm

rbavfan wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
rbavfan wrote:


Yes but as I stated it was well documented that Detroit was piced over CVG because the cancellation of the agreement would be to expensive and 1 had to close. Family were stockholders in Delta as long as I can remember. There wer comments in some of those about CVG vs DTW. Cost won out as CVG had a larger portion of the US population within a 2 hour flight time vs DTW operations at the time.


Why would any rational airline pick CVG (closer to ATL, smaller local market) over DTW regardless of any obligations to DTW?


Back then CVG was a much bigger O& D than it is now. They also had full Customs/FIS that had lots of unused capacity making for much faster connections than DTW.

It was the smaller O/D market closer to the megahub bleed money, and was mostly 50 seaters when delta was trying to reduce them. It was obvious from the day of the merger who was going to lose out
 
Antarius
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 4:13 pm

rbavfan wrote:
WidebodyPTV wrote:
TTailedTiger wrote:

You are neglecting the passenger experience. Delta still (or at least before covid) offers CVG and RDU for connections. And those are the two nicest connecting experiences you will find in the US. ATL is always a shoulder to shoulder madhouse and way too much walking is involved at DTW and MSP. I'll never understand why DTW didn't link A and B/C by train. It's an awful experience and doesn't allow for quick connections. A 30 minute connection MCO-RDU-DCA is a breeze.


The passenger experience is irrelevant - for the airlines, it’s about what resources generate the most revenue. For the passengers, it’s about what offers the best schedule and price. If this wasn’t true, PIT would still be a hub, people wouldn’t be packing jets to ATL, DFW, etc.


Be honest here. The reason ATL & DFW hubs thoughput of traffic is so high is because AA controls DFW & DL controls ATL (& DTW) without others being able to compete there they can charge higher prices for O & D than compeditors & get away with it. 90% control over cost on those 2. United likewise has that at Newark & wish they had that at Denver as well.


You're mixing correlation with causation. Yes, those airports have high throughput because of being major hubs, but no to the rest.

The key point is that ATL and DFW have O&D, which make them capable of being big hugs for connections.
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Cubsrule
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 4:25 pm

rbavfan wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
rbavfan wrote:


Yes but as I stated it was well documented that Detroit was piced over CVG because the cancellation of the agreement would be to expensive and 1 had to close. Family were stockholders in Delta as long as I can remember. There wer comments in some of those about CVG vs DTW. Cost won out as CVG had a larger portion of the US population within a 2 hour flight time vs DTW operations at the time.


Why would any rational airline pick CVG (closer to ATL, smaller local market) over DTW regardless of any obligations to DTW?


Back then CVG was a much bigger O& D than it is now. They also had full Customs/FIS that had lots of unused capacity making for much faster connections than DTW.


Exactly what connections were faster than DTW? While I liked C and it was crazy efficient for OH-OH connections, connecting to or from mainline was a slog and even A to B (or vice versa) connections weren’t that much fun.
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TVNWZ
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Re: Question About DL's MEM Hub Closure

Sun Jan 24, 2021 5:33 pm

Cubsrule wrote:
rbavfan wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:

Why would any rational airline pick CVG (closer to ATL, smaller local market) over DTW regardless of any obligations to DTW?


Back then CVG was a much bigger O& D than it is now. They also had full Customs/FIS that had lots of unused capacity making for much faster connections than DTW.


Exactly what connections were faster than DTW? While I liked C and it was crazy efficient for OH-OH connections, connecting to or from mainline was a slog and even A to B (or vice versa) connections weren’t that much fun.


It doesn’t get much faster than DTW. Loving connecting there

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