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A330DAT
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Air Transat To Brussels

Thu May 23, 2002 5:47 pm

Starting May 26th, Air Transat will again start services from Montreal to Brussels for the summer. (the first flight arriving in Brussels at 11:40 the morning of the 27th) 757's or L-1011's were flown to BRU in the past, can anyone tell me what type of aircraft will be used this season?

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 Smokin cool
 
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Fri May 24, 2002 12:17 am

Hello A330DAT,

I think that the A330 is too big for the BRU-market. Logic would be that they should use the B757 like they were used to do in the 2000-2001 summer season.

But now the situation has changed!!

Canada 3000 does not exist anymore, and they flew too to Brussels. So maybe they have more pax to fill their plane. Also Sabena went bankrupt, so there is no direct connection anymore from Brussels to Canada.

So maybe, if you look to these arguments, is the A330 more likely?

Another thing about Canada: I heard that AC would start flying to Brussels in November from Montreal. The aircraft they should use is the B767, and more likely the -200 version.

Who knows more?

Regards,
Frederic
 
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yyz717
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Fri May 24, 2002 2:03 am

The YUL-BRU is heavily summer seasonal....primarily leisure. I'd be surprized if AC started this route at all, let alone in Nov. You never know I guess.

I dumped at the gybe mark in strong winds when I looked up at a Porter Q400 on finals. Can't stop spotting.
 
vtual
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Fri May 24, 2002 2:13 am

I know someone who loves Canada and would like to go to Montreal (from Brussels) this summer. Is it possible to book only tickets with Air Transat or is it necessary to buy a complete package ?

--
Vincent
 
sabena_A340
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Fri May 24, 2002 3:02 am

Finally! Airlines are coming back to Brussels, very good news.

Yes, tickets can be booked on http://www.airtransat.com
 
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apuneger
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Fri May 24, 2002 3:04 am

It seams like the airlines are again trying to establish some routes between Belgian and Canada.

Well, the more longhaul operators at BRU, the merrier! Hmmm...can't wait to photograph them with my (new digital SLR?) camera...sweeeeet Big grin

Ivan
Ivan Coninx - Brussels Aviation Photography
 
Sabena 690
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Fri May 24, 2002 4:53 am

I heard that they will operate the A310 to Brussels.

Rgds
Frederic
 
flyyul
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Sat May 25, 2002 10:17 am

YUL-BRU is a very heavy route, as dictated by the 90%+ loads out of SN in Montreal, and yes, not all had BRU for a final destination...... One day, ill bet you'll see YUL-BRU again..

Mark
 
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 4:03 am

Air Transat flies tomorrow for the first time this year from Montreal Mirabel to Brussels, here is the schedule:

Arrival in Brussels:
TS 188 MONTREAL (YMX) 11:40 313 CHARTER FLT

Departure in Brussels:
TS 189 MONTREAL (YMX) 13:30 313 CHARTER FLT

I had personally hoped for the Lockheed Tristar, but it is the A310-300  Sad

Regards,
Frederic
 
pressclub
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 4:21 am

Frederic

The new noice restrictions make it difficult to operate aircraft like L Tristar or DC 10 in Brussels. From july 1 these noise restrictions are even more severe. Especially for Biman situation is not so good anymore. If they have delays, their a/c can no longer land in brussels...

www.airportmediation.be is an interesting site from the new created 'ombudsman' of brussels airport. Have a look and mail me once.



 
Noise
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 4:53 am

How many times wekly will AT fly YUL-BRU?

I never heard of AC planning a november YUL-BRU launch, all I heard is that they were thinking of a YYZ-YUL-BRU while Sabena was here, and they would kick them out. Now that Sabena is gone, I guess they have postponed or dropped the idea of a Canada-Brussels route. If AC did fly to BRU, it would probably be though YYZ.

Does SN fly overseas, or do they plan to in the future? By the looks of it, VG won't be Belgium's overseas carrier for long, so I just wanted to know how SN is doing in terms of international travel, especially to other french speaking countries.

Chris
 
A330DAT
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 4:55 am

Thanks for the info Frederic. The first landing in Brussels will be tomorrow morning (Monday May 27th).

 Smokin cool Big grin
 
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yyz717
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 6:42 am

SN load factors provide no indication of profitability. SN was the world's most unprofitable airline...only 2 annual profits since 1958. With SN's extremely powerful unions and generally incompetent mgmt, it's possible that not a single SN route was profitable upon SN's demise.

I dumped at the gybe mark in strong winds when I looked up at a Porter Q400 on finals. Can't stop spotting.
 
flyyul
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 10:13 am

One thing is for sure, SN has/had the best load factor to North America in Montreal... so that's an interesting proposition for another airline to pick up the slack.. and several have....

mark
 
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yyz717
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 11:32 am

You can't say that FLYYUL. You do not track (indeed, are not privy to) all load factors by all airlines across the Atlantic.

Based on the relatively poor economies of both YUL and BRU, and based on them both being French-speaking cities, the market is likely low-yielding tourist traffic. AC's disinterest in this market (despite being based in YUL) and their willingness to try many new Euro markets elsewhere from YYZ, suggests that the YUL-BRU is small, or unprofitable, or low yielding (or all 3).

I dumped at the gybe mark in strong winds when I looked up at a Porter Q400 on finals. Can't stop spotting.
 
crank
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 12:41 pm

one thing, AT are operating their charter flights out of YMX and not YUL. There are speculations saying that they will move to YUL by 2004.
 
yhu
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 12:42 pm

I doubt YUL-BRU was unproffitably, as I would imagine sabena would have pulled the route. However, I also see nothing indicating that it was their best route in North America. Some people who may or may not be privy have siad it was the best in NA. Others on this board over the past year have also said it wasn't. But I would find it hard to believe that YUL-BRU would have higher yeild than say NYC-BRU.

It would be in AC's best interest to start YYZ-BRU. They would not only get the YYZ-BRU traffic, but also the YUL-BRU traffic with people connecting in YYZ. Why pay more to add a stop at YUL when you'll get a good half of those YUL passengers by just having them connect in Toronto.

Dave
 
LH423
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 3:06 pm

For once I have to agree with Yyz717 regarding Montréal. While it may be possible that BRU-YUL may have had the highest load factors, I believe it has been stated here and elsewhere that Boston and New York (and even then, only one of the two daily JFK flights) were actually profitable for Sabena. SN flew daily into BOS with usually and A330-300 or A340-300, and usually had decent loads, which is indicated by VG clamouring to serve BOS and JFK. However, their decision to serve LAX over YUL is puzzling, because at least Montréal is a tried and true route, whereas I don't know when or if Sabena ever served LAX and if they did how long ago and why they dropped out. In terms of route viability, you can't always judge a route's success by it's load factors.

LH423
« On ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux » Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
 
LGW
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 5:20 pm

I have seen TS L-1011's at BRU B4

LGW
 
A330DAT
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Mon May 27, 2002 6:33 pm

This is part of a thread which I have written about before:

When Sabena started flying to Montreal in MD-11 (after a 6 year absence), the flights were losing money. The route did not have enough business class travellers however (a problem all airlines out of Montreal face). In the last year before Sabena went bankrupt, Montreal did become profitable. Business class travel had gone up (although it was still below the North American average) Actually, overall, the flight had the highest load factors in North America. Sabena had never done so well on the route and things were actually looking quite good. (even with Swissair snooping away high yield Sabena passengers) Let's face it, Montreal is more of a touristic destination, but why not exploit that?

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To sum it up: Montreal was not the biggest money maker in North America for Sabena but it was the destination with the highest load factors.

As for LAX. The only reason LAX would be served would be through the (coming???) deal with Armenian Airlines. No deal, no LAX! Other alternatives would be sought. Montreal's one of them.

 Smokin cool
 
flyyul
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Tue May 28, 2002 10:24 am

Hey Guys,

Let me apologize on the behalf on my beloved friend Neil (a.k.a YYZ717) who is the connaiseur of all aviation, and the ultimate "know it all".

How do I know that SN had the best load factor in Montreal? Well, a few travel agents on the Montreal board met with Patrick Malacord (the SN representative for North America,) and he had indicated that the Montreal route was a complete success. In fact, he as a manager, did such a good job, that not only did Austrian come to pick up sonme of the slack, but hired him as the Canadian Manager for OS, basedin Montreal (im sorry Neil, they could have chosen Toronto has the hq ... will you start getting defensive and criticizing our economy, french people, or is it a hidden prejudice against Toronto?)

I dont know of many instances with any carrier, where high load factors may equal unprofitable flights. Granted that SN was a heavily discounting many of its routes, and consequently went bankrupt. But for the most part, and its a rule of thumb, MOST flights with high load factors over the trans-atlatic usually means $$$$$ . (note: I said MOST)

I didnt matter what the season was, but SN filled the planes into Montreal 6 times weekly in the winter, daily in the summer, with loadf factors of consistent 90% averages. Now if im VG and can try to formulate the same kind of connecting scheme with Virgin Express (I hope they have a solid structure to France where many french Montrealers vacation), VG would have success in Montreal.

But Neil will convince you thatMontrealandBrussels are too weak of economies to support eachother, despite thw fact that last summer, SN/2T and TS were operating BRU flights. And the year before, SN/QN/2T and TS... Oh and dont forget that Montreal is leading the Canadian economy in terms of absolute jobsproduced so far for this year (but I never seem to get any kind of response on that, it must be that our economy is weak (perhaps they are all working in McDonald or related type jobs)  Big thumbs up

Sincerely,  Smile
Mark

 
Planeawesome
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Tue May 28, 2002 11:39 am

I was told by a very well respected corporate travel agent that SN through Brussels was the best deal when flying from Montreal to Europe last summer (in terms of a cost/benefit ratio-service,price,low crowds etc.).

Obviously, their costs were so high or their prices so low (both ?) that even 90% full planes couldn't succeed. Pity.

Business is brutal. It really is survival of the fittest in most countries.

 
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yyz717
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Tue May 28, 2002 12:40 pm

SN is dead. YUL-BRU remains unserved.

The marketplace has spoken.

I dumped at the gybe mark in strong winds when I looked up at a Porter Q400 on finals. Can't stop spotting.
 
pressclub
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Wed May 29, 2002 4:46 am

Guys,

I have some info about this: the Sabena internal route figures (from the finance department), studies from boston consulting and from mc Kinsey...

I give you for what it is: but according to these studies Montreal was not at all profitable due to a lack of good C class revenues. And Y Class was filled with cheap tickets from pax that were feeded from all over Europe. Only Boston, CVG and some months of the year NY were profitable for Sabena.

Other problem was, according to these studies, that Sabena did not have a feeder in Canada.

FLYYUL, occupancy says nothing in aviation. What counts is yield. On the johannesburg route Sabena had an occup rate of more than 90 pct, same for Tokyo. Both routes were closed due to the common route policy Sabena/Swissair but also coz of the losses. I am not telling this. The Belgian mamangement members who appear for the parliamentary investigation commission these days tell this.

This friday i see Mr John Lindekens, former EVP Sabena for the Americas. He is a honnest, intelligent man. I will ask him about the profitability of the Montreal operation. I will put the answer on the net as soon as possible.

Pressclub





 
A330DAT
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Air Transat To Brussels

Thu May 30, 2002 7:48 am

Pressclub - I know about the Mc Kinsey reports but they did forget to calculate certain important details. One example:

The yields on the Montreal flights were indeed quite low (as mentioned before, they were mainly economy class passengers rather than business), however one of the main advantages or should I say assets of Montreal was an unnegligeable amount of "through" traffic to the African continent, where the real high yields are! Without this connecting traffic, well...we see the result with SN Brussels Airlines today... they're having trouble filling their flights because of a lack of connecting traffic!

The problem with Mc Kinsey was that they only calculated the value of each stretch (YUL-BRU/...BRU/Africa...) as individual flights but "THEY FORGOT TO SEE THE WHOLE PICTURE" Without this Montreal flight, Sabena would not of sold the ongoing ticket to it's final destination (in this case Africa)

The result is that thins get complexe and you end up with people having different ways of calculating profit margins. You can say it's a way (or excuse) for suppressing a destination, while the other person argues the contrary. In this case I would also say (and this is my gut feeling, not "yields" talking) "If the flights are full, then the situation must not be THAT bad!" Montreal flights were "FULL".

 Smokin cool
 
pothiabs
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Thu May 30, 2002 8:20 am

hub-and-spoke operations are the biggest cost-factor in airline operations :
* lower aircraft hours per day (scheduling the planes to come and go in banks)
* crew scheduling less efficient (layovers, max Flight duties, ..)
* very close follow up needed on the bookings (SIC), costs money
* extremely low revenues per transfer pax (barely enough to pay the fuel and food)
* more operational irregularities and delays
* Smooth pax transfer system : $, $ , $ (again)
* Airport structure not adapted to this kind of ops. (e.g. Zürich, MXP)
(When looking at low-cost carriers you won't find the above-mentioned items !)

Only the really big ones can operate hub-and-spoke because they have a big number of O&D pax (the guaranteed revenue from the home-market) : AF, LH and BA (although LHR is not a real hub). KLM will have a hard time the next couple of years :
* just like SN, their tranfser traffic is growing beyond acceptable proportion
* they are also under pressure from EasyJet on the AMS-market
(Still can't understand why they ordered B777s, and not B767s)

SN also had the problem that it was forced to lower its prices too much on connecting flights to fill up its planes. A 98% load factor says nothing about profitability.

And SN-Brussels announces in November that it wants to "reconnect" Brussels and operate hub-and-spoke out of Brussels, and in addition compete with Air France ??? Wishful thinking or unrealistic behaviour ? A transfer passenger is a "virtual passenger", and who can tell where the 6 million ex-SN xfer passengers have gone ? Surely not DAT, and with the lack of credibility they now have, it doesn't look as if the ex-"qualifliers" will want to book a DAT-flight.

I had hoped they would have excercised a bit more modesty and thorough brainstorming over at the network-"Follet"-department.....too bad. Same player won't shoot again this time.



 
LH423
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Thu May 30, 2002 8:41 am

Sorry to change the subject again, but could someone tell me why Sabena always enjoyed high loads and profitability in Boston? As far as I know there aren't a lot of Belgians living in Boston, and I don't know where they'd get much of the connecting traffic.

Thanks.

LH423

P.S. FLYYUL, the correct spelling in connoisseur (or connaisseur en français) Big grin
« On ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux » Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
 
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yyz717
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Thu May 30, 2002 10:26 am

Measuring profitability on 'spoke' flights into hubs is very difficult, as mentioned above. You have to consider the connecting traffic, not just the local traffic. This greatly increases the complexity of the profit picture for the hub & for the individual spokes.

In theory, when you add one new spoke flight (whether to an existing city or a new city) into any hub, you increase the feed into every other spoke, hence increasing the profitability of those other spokes. So, does it make sense to have some loss-making spokes into a profitable hub? Probably, but how many? That is the big issue with hub economics.

Ironically, the most profitable routes into any hub are often those with the highest O&D (and hence the lowest hubbing or connecting traffic) since yields on one-leg tickets are usually higher than on each leg of a multi-leg ticket thru a hub.

I dumped at the gybe mark in strong winds when I looked up at a Porter Q400 on finals. Can't stop spotting.
 
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yyz717
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RE: Air Transat To Brussels

Thu May 30, 2002 10:49 am

I agree that YYZ-DUB/AMS/MAD are tourist oriented & are marginally profitable at best. Perhaps they are just the best use of those assets for the summer.

I would still argue though that AC chose those routes over YUL-BRU for a reason. Perhaps, if nothing else, that the 763 fleet is YYZ-based (largely) and adding a YUL-BRU route would really have meant adding a YYZ-YUL-BRU route.

I dumped at the gybe mark in strong winds when I looked up at a Porter Q400 on finals. Can't stop spotting.

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