DUSdude
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AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 5:34 am

Hi people,

As a relatively frequent traveller on the above route, I am bewildered why UA and AA continue to fly bescially hourly flights, each, with relatively small aircraft (UA: A319/A320/733/735; AA: MD80). It seems to be a recipe for disaster at these particular two airports. It seems, the basic idea was to give the customer a choice of departure times, since both markets have such strong O and D, as well as connecting traffic that they can economically support a lot of volume. But given the slot restrictions at both airports, there simply are too many flights for any of them to leave on time. Only under the best weather conditions does this system work. Throw in a little bit of bad weather and the entire system is delayed with many flights canceled. On my last few trips on this route, only once did my flight leave on time: the 6am United flight out of ORD in perfect weather. Most typically, flights are massively delayed - especially in the evenings, when the ripple effects of an entire day's worth of delays have accumulated - and standby on earlier flights is often futile as the earlier flights are delayed to the point that they depart after my booked flight. Why don't UA and AA replace a couple of the flights with fewer flights on larger equiment? LGA can handle everything up to a 764. Why not replace two MD80s with one 763? Are there just too few parking spaces available for such large aircraft or are the 767/757 fleets of UA and AA too thin to accomodate some of these flights? Do the airlines want to keep cycles low on their larger aircraft? What is it? Surely, under the present system, the delays obviate any former argument in favor of hourly flights.
 
Cubsrule
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 5:45 am

Quoting DUSdude (Thread starter):
Surely, under the present system, the delays obviate any former argument in favor of hourly flights.

And equally surely, business travellers continue to demand them, to the point that UA and AA would rather cut a frequency to MSN or AZO before they put bigger planes on LGA (or MSP or plenty of other airports. Hell, AA has 10 daily flights to LAX, only one of which is on a widebody).
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
DUSdude
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 5:49 am

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 1):
And equally surely, business travellers continue to demand them, to the point that UA and AA would rather cut a frequency to MSN or AZO before they put bigger planes on LGA (or MSP or plenty of other airports. Hell, AA has 10 daily flights to LAX, only one of which is on a widebody

And the customer is king however unrealistic or unreasonable?
 
jetdeltamsy
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 5:55 am

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 1):
UA and AA would rather cut a frequency to MSN or AZO before they put bigger planes on LGA

what???

UA and AA fly regional jets to MSN and AZO.

I don't understand your comment.

It's about competition, pure and simple. NYC-ORD is a huge market, and neither airline wants to give up market share to the other.

The route is probably profitable for both airlines, although nobody in this forum have factual infomation one way or the other.

We've seen many, many routes cut over the last five years that were operated for prestige. I speculate that this route must be profitable for both or they would have rationalized thier schedules years ago.

The part about bigger airplanes on the route is silly. That's not going to happen.
Tired of airline bankruptcies....EA/PA/TW and finally DL.
 
787EWR
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 6:00 am

Quoting DUSdude (Thread starter):
LGA can handle everything up to a 764. Why not replace two MD80s with one 763? Are there just too few parking spaces available for such large aircraft or are the 767/757 fleets of UA and AA too thin to accomodate some of these flights? Do the airlines want to keep cycles low on their larger aircraft? What is it? Surely, under the present system, the delays obviate any former argument in favor of hourly flights.

I think it may have to do with the value of the slots at LGA. Once you give 'em up, you ain't getting them back. I am not sure of the load factors, but I am trying to find it on the FAA's web site. However, according to what I did find, the New York to Chicago route had the most emplaned passengers with 3.6 million from January 2006 to January 2007.

There were 957 flights between American and United between LGA and ORD between March 1 and march 30, 2007.

here are some statistics(follow Left to Right.

Origin Airport: Chicago, IL - O'Hare International (ORD)
Destination Airport: New York, NY - LaGuardia (LGA)
Time Period: March 1, 2007 to March 30, 2007
|
Carriers All Flights
Total Number Average Departure Delay (minutes) Average Taxi-Out Time (minutes) Average Scheduled Departure to Take-off (minutes) Average Arrival Delay (minutes) Average Airborne Time (minutes) Average Taxi-In Time (minutes) Total Number Cancelled Percent Flights Cancelled Total Number Diverted Percent Flights Diverted

All* 957 26.44 23.83 50.27 31.04 101.75 5.98 102 10.66 0 0.00
AA 537 22.30 22.89 45.18 27.21 101.58 6.74 64 11.92 0 0.00
UA 420 31.57 24.99 56.56 35.79 101.96 5.04 38 9.05 0 0.00

* Average of all airlines that have direct flights from the origin airport to the destination airport.

SOURCE: Bureau of Transportation Statistics

Carriers Late Flights
Total Number Average Departure Delay (minutes) Average Taxi-Out Time (minutes) Average Scheduled Departure to Take-off (minutes) Average Arrival Delay (minutes) Average Airborne Time (minutes) Average Taxi-In Time (minutes) Percent Flights Late

All* 425 53.32 30.95 84.27 65.51 102.99 6.63 44.41
AA 225 47.05 30.47 77.52 60.83 103.50 7.78 41.90
UA 200 60.37 31.50 91.86 70.76 102.42 5.32 47.62
 
swiftski
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 6:03 am

I had issues on this route to. Flew UA 835K on a 752; the feeder for the Shanghai (ORD-PVG) flight and there were awful delays at both ends. We sat on the ground at LGA for over an hour, so much so that the next flight then sat behind us as well, also delayed. It was interesting listening on channel 9 though, as I knew what was going on a few minutes before the most of the passengers who I'm assuming weren't listening.

At ORD we were holding for quite a while too; aftermath of a groundstop.
 
Cubsrule
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 6:07 am

Quoting Jetdeltamsy (Reply 3):
I don't understand your comment.

Given that AA and UA are basically limited to a certain number of flights at ORD, they'd rather have fewer flights to places like AZO and MSN than cut frequencies to LGA and use larger equipment (thereby permitting them to increase frequency on other routes).
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
commavia
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 6:21 am

Quoting DUSdude (Thread starter):
But given the slot restrictions at both airports, there simply are too many flights for any of them to leave on time.

"Too many" according to who? For the millions of travelers who fly between O'Hare and LaGuardia each year, many of them business travelers, there obviously aren't "too many flights."

The U.S. already had the system that you suggest -- fewer flights, larger planes, etc. Up until the mid-1980s, that is exactly how must major domestic trunk routes operated. Major routes like ORD-LAX, or LGA-MIA, only saw a few daily frequencies by each airline, but with high-density aircraft like DC10s or 747s. Then, the economic realities of the future sunk in: customers were willing to pay more to get the flexibility of more flights and more convenient schedules. (Just ask Southwest.) That is why, today, a business traveler booked on American flight 345 out of LGA at 4:45pm to ORD can now get to the airport an hour early, after rapping up their meeting early, and hop on flight 335 out of LGA at 3:45pm. They can be home in time for an early dinner with the spouse and kids. That is what customers want. As soon as high-yielding business travelers start asking for fewer flights with larger aircraft in order to offset some of the delays, then airlines will be only to happy to provide that. Until then, high frequency and high delays it is.

Quoting DUSdude (Thread starter):
Only under the best weather conditions does this system work. Throw in a little bit of bad weather and the entire system is delayed with many flights canceled.

Well, first off, "the system" is far, far more than just ORD or LGA. The reason ORD has massive delays is because it has a horrible runway layout (that is finally on its way to getting fixed) that is just not designed for all-weather conditions. And the reason that LGA has massive delays is because it is one of the most attractive and convenient airports in the U.S., serving the largest and most important travel market in the U.S., and only has two runways, which intersect with each other. The fact that there are over 30 daily flights from ORD (an airport with well over 1,500 daily departures) to LGA (an airport with well over 1,000 daily departures) is fairly inconsequential to "the system."

Quoting DUSdude (Thread starter):
Why don't UA and AA replace a couple of the flights with fewer flights on larger equiment?

Because that is not what customers want. If customers wanted larger planes, fewer flights, and (theoretically) fewer delays, than that is what airlines would give them.

Quoting DUSdude (Thread starter):
Why not replace two MD80s with one 763?

Because customers would rather have an MD80 ever 60 minutes than a 767 every 90-120.

Quoting DUSdude (Thread starter):
Are there just too few parking spaces available for such large aircraft or are the 767/757 fleets of UA and AA too thin to accomodate some of these flights?

Both UA and AA have gates at LGA that can handle 767s or larger. That isn't the issue.

Quoting DUSdude (Thread starter):
Do the airlines want to keep cycles low on their larger aircraft?

Some yes, some no, although that isn't why widebodies aren't flying between ORD and LGA.

Quoting DUSdude (Thread starter):
Surely, under the present system, the delays obviate any former argument in favor of hourly flights.

Surely not, given that even with the "massive delays" you discuss, there are still millions of travelers each month who choose to fly between O'Hare and LaGuardia. They obviously feel that the flexibility that hourly flights affords them is worth the "acceptable risk" of delays.
 
DUSdude
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 8:29 am

Commavia,

Quoting Commavia (Reply 7):
"Too many" according to who? For the millions of travelers who fly between O'Hare and LaGuardia each year, many of them business travelers, there obviously aren't "too many flights."

You misunderstood my post. I never said reduce the volume of passengers. I said keep the volume by using larger planes less frequently, thereby giving yourself more wiggle room should things go awry, instead of stacking departures in such close succession that none of them leave on time because they get in each other's way. The stats 787EWR quoted are even worse than I thought. The "flexibility" you suggest simply isn't there when in fact that 8pm flight you were planning on taking turns more into an 11pm. If you were to look at actual departure times instead of the advertised departure times, the "choices" don't really look like choices anymore. Often flights meant to leave hours apart leave within 5 minutes of each other due to delays. There must be a happy medium between the dearth of choice during regulation and the current excess.

Quoting Commavia (Reply 7):
Well, first off, "the system" is far, far more than just ORD or LGA. The reason ORD has massive delays is because it has a horrible runway layout (that is finally on its way to getting fixed) that is just not designed for all-weather conditions. And the reason that LGA has massive delays is because it is one of the most attractive and convenient airports in the U.S., serving the largest and most important travel market in the U.S., and only has two runways, which intersect with each other. The fact that there are over 30 daily flights from ORD (an airport with well over 1,500 daily departures) to LGA (an airport with well over 1,000 daily departures) is fairly inconsequential to "the system."

No that's not the problem. The problem are the people who run the airlines and think they can operate hourly flights out of such unsuitable airports.

Quoting Commavia (Reply 7):
Because that is not what customers want. If customers wanted larger planes, fewer flights, and (theoretically) fewer delays, than that is what airlines would give them.

Sorry, but that is naive at best. As if consumers simply walked up to the CEOs and told them point blank what they wanted, and as if customers always knew in advance what they wanted, and as if the companies simply translated consumer demand into real action 1:1. More likely, this is the answer:

Quoting 787EWR (Reply 4):
I think it may have to do with the value of the slots at LGA. Once you give 'em up, you ain't getting them back. I am not sure of the load factors, but I am trying to find it on the FAA's web site. However, according to what I did find, the New York to Chicago route had the most emplaned passengers with 3.6 million from January 2006 to January 2007.

Far more plausible explanation, really. Classic prinsoners' dilemma. It would be in everyone's interest to reduce slots by about 10% (which is the average share of cancelled flights on this sector), use larger aircraft (thereby keeping the same volume) and give everyone a little more breathing room. But nobody wants to give an inch for fear of the other guy getting the better end of the deal. So status quo it is and the customer, whom you glorify, Commavia, doesn't really have any choice. We're stuck with a glorified hourly bus service that never leaves on time. Best bet is to simply walk up to the airport in good weather at approximately the time you'd like to leave with carry-on luggage only and hope for a standby.

Quoting Commavia (Reply 7):
Both UA and AA have gates at LGA that can handle 767s or larger. That isn't the issue.

But how many? Not more than 2-3 each at the tip of each terminal finger, no?

Quoting Commavia (Reply 7):
Surely not, given that even with the "massive delays" you discuss, there are still millions of travelers each month who choose to fly between O'Hare and LaGuardia. They obviously feel that the flexibility that hourly flights affords them is worth the "acceptable risk" of delays.

Ah, yes, that fetishized consumer choice again. Really, what is the choice? I much prefer flying into EWR, but there you have the opposite problem: too few flights. With the new NJ Transit link to the city, it's the better airport to fly into. But what good does that do me if the airlines only offer 2-3 flights a day, again with silly small equipment, so again too few available seats and (often) higher fares. When I was still living in Brooklyn, JFK was my airport of choice, but back then JetBlue's ORD operation was not yet up and running. Really, UA and AA overwhelmingly dominate the Chicago-New York nonstop market. There isn't much choice at all.

Let me rephrase my question. This seems to be almost a peculiar US issue and the LGA-ORD sector is rather emblematic. There seems to be a preference stateside for many flights with small equipment. Elsewhere on the planet you have e.g. BA flying 763 and LH flying A306 on high density short-hauls. Why? Are the airlines in the US really just trying to hog up gates/slots so that the other guy doesn't get them?
 
atlaaron
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 8:37 am

Just a bit of information for the discussion AA has 52% of the traffic from ORD-LGA and UA has 41%.
 
DUSdude
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 8:43 am

Quoting ATLAaron (Reply 9):
Just a bit of information for the discussion AA has 52% of the traffic from ORD-LGA and UA has 41%

Would you happen to have stats as to the proportion of UA/AA LGA-ORD flights compared to the entire New York-Chicago market? (i.e. taking into account JetBlue out of JFK, CO and AA out of EWR, etc.)
 
commavia
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 8:50 am

DUSdude,

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
You misunderstood my post. I never said reduce the volume of passengers. I said keep the volume by using larger planes less frequently, thereby giving yourself more wiggle room should things go awry, instead of stacking departures in such close succession that none of them leave on time because they get in each other's way.

Respectfully, I didn't misunderstand your post. I know that you didn't mean reducing passenger volume, just flight frequency. I was always referring to why artificially reducing the frequency of flights -- when that is what customers want -- is not realistic.

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
The "flexibility" you suggest simply isn't there when in fact that 8pm flight you were planning on taking turns more into an 11pm. If you were to look at actual departure times instead of the advertised departure times, the "choices" don't really look like choices anymore.

But once again, people already know this. The business man who flies from O'Hare to LaGuardia on the 6am flight every morning, and back on the 5pm flight to O'Hare every Friday night, no doubt has experience with whether or not his flights are commonly delayed. And yet, for the millions of people who actually do this every year, they are still willing to accept that some flights will be delayed as the cost of getting the benefit of having hourly flights to choose from.

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
No that's not the problem. The problem are the people who run the airlines and think they can operate hourly flights out of such unsuitable airports.

Airlines do what customers want. If customers want larger aircraft, fewer flights, and (again, theoretically) fewer delays, then that is what airlines will give them. But doesn't it strike you as a bit odd that U.S. airlines would have so universally shifted away from the few flights/big planes model over the last 25 years? If customers were so fed up with all the excruciating delays throughout the U.S., and would rather have fewer, but more dependable, flights with larger airplanes, would this seem to you like every single airline in the U.S. was basically turning away from what the market wanted?

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
As if consumers simply walked up to the CEOs and told them point blank what they wanted

Why even bother walking up to the CEO? Just walk up to your computer, log on to Orbitz.com, and tell the CEO exactly what you think with your wallet. That is, I am quite sure, what they are listening to most attentively.

And by and large, consumers have voted with their wallet: millions of people ply the O'Hare-LaGuardia route each year, and these people obviously feel that there is an acceptable level of delay risk and are still willing to book their tickets. If these customers all felt so annoyed with the delays, and demanded larger aircraft to alleviate some of the congestion, then we would see a massive shift away from flights to LaGuardia and towards airports with fewer delays, like White Plains, Newburgh and JFK. But it hasn't happened. Millions of people, even given the "massive delays" that apparently plague the O'Hare-LaGuardia market, are still willing to drop down hundreds or thousands of dollars to fly on this route and enjoy the flexibility of hourly flights. Again, until that changes, these schedules aren't going to change.

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
But how many? Not more than 2-3 each at the tip of each terminal finger, no?

I'm not sure, but again, I can assure you: availability of widebody gates is definitely not what is keep SA)">AA and SA)">UA from offering widebody flights from ORD to LGA.

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
I much prefer flying into EWR, but there you have the opposite problem: too few flights.

So which is it that is more valuable: more flights, or less delays?

Because in an artificially constrained market where nobody is willing to spend money on infrastructure, that is basically now the choice the American traveling public is left with.

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
But what good does that do me if the airlines only offer 2-3 flights a day, again with silly small equipment, so again too few available seats and (often) higher fares.

The airline with the fewest number of flights between Chicago and Newark is American, with 6x daily flights. United has 8x daily service, and Continental 11x daily. That's 25 daily flights to choose from.

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
Really, SA)">UA and SA)">AA overwhelmingly dominate the Chicago-New York nonstop market. There isn't much choice at all.

O'Hare-New York, yes. But if you want a good fare, from a more convenient airport, you can easily fly ATA on one of its six daily Midway-LaGuardia flights, or one of Continental's 11 flights from both Midway and O'Hare to Newark.

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
There seems to be a preference stateside for many flights with small equipment.

Because, once again, that is what the market wants.

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
Elsewhere on the planet you have e.g. BA flying 763 and LH flying A306 on high density short-hauls. Why?

Every market is different. In many European markets, where high-speed trains provide serious competition, there is far less time-sensitive demand for air travel, and many of the customers don't value the high-frequency shuttle-like schedule as much. Although, that being said, I think it would be fairly hard to argue that this type of model doesn't exist in a very real way in other parts of the world: witness LH on FRA-MUC/-TXL, AZ on FCO-LIN, AF on ORY-NCE/-MRS, BA on LHR-GLA/-EDI/-MAN/-AMS/-BRU, JL/NH on HND-ITO, CX on HKG-TPE, QF on SYD-MEL/-BNE, JJ on SDU-CGH, SA on JNB-CPT, JJ on BOM-DEL, etc. In all of the above markets, a fairly high-frequency (at least relative to the size of the respective markets) shuttle-type operation is offered.

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
Are the airlines in the US really just trying to hog up gates/slots so that the other guy doesn't get them?

There may be some of that, but by and large, it has more to do with the market. Maybe you could argue that an airline here, or another airline there, is just flying tons of flights to "hog gates," but that certainly can't explain why trunk routes all over the U.S. have dozens of flights per day.
 
bond007
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 8:57 am

Quoting Commavia (Reply 7):
Because customers would rather have an MD80 ever 60 minutes than a 767 every 90-120.

When the MD80 is always delayed, it makes very little difference ... in fact a huge advantage to less frequency if it means the 767 every 90 mins is more likely to depart on time.

Quoting Commavia (Reply 7):
They obviously feel that the flexibility that hourly flights affords them is worth the "acceptable risk" of delays.

...or they could just want to get from A to B with the least hassle, and the most reliable method.

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 1):
And equally surely, business travellers continue to demand them,

I'd love to know who these business travellers are? I stand around DCA every week, waiting for the late inbounds from LGA and BOS, see 3 shuttles to the same airport leaving within 40 mins of each other, and then a gap of 2 hrs before the next one .... all this time with 2,000 of these 'demanding' business travellers trying to go standby, change flights, etc. etc. etc.

As you may have heard me say time and time again ..... when I can leave my office and get on plane 30 minutes later, that departs on time most weeks, then I'd like more frequent flights .... when I have to leave at least 2hrs before my flight departs, and it takes me 6hrs door-to-door to fly 500 miles, then I couldn't care whether the flight was at 7:00pm or 8:00pm.

The airlines haven't been too successful at giving any passenger what they really want ...


Jimbo
I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
 
SkyyMaster
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:00 am

IIRC, both AA and UA have pretty much been offering hourly services between these two airports since the 70's. It was not uncommon for each to have multiple DC10 and/or 767 equipment on the flights in the 70's and early 80's. The DC10 was pretty much a result of AA wanting a larger a/c for this very route. Since the wides are mainly used for trans-con and international, there's not much left in the way of aircraft options. 757's maybe, but they too are becoming a more precious commodity elsewhere. Other posts nail it. Most pax want frequency. It's not likely we'll see much bigger planes on these routes again.
 
atlaaron
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:03 am

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 10):
Would you happen to have stats as to the proportion of UA/AA LGA-ORD flights compared to the entire New York-Chicago market?

Well to JFK UA has 1% whereas AA has 17%. (Delta has 37%)

To EWR UA has 30% and AA has 31%.

So according to MY numbers AA dominates in all three NYC airports.

Hope that is what you wanted, if not ask away . . .
 
commavia
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:05 am

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 12):
When the MD80 is always delayed, it makes very little difference ... in fact a huge advantage to less frequency if it means the 767 every 90 mins is more likely to depart on time.

Once again, though, you fail to explain: if customers are so fed up with all the delays, why do they continue to book tickets on these ORD-LGA flights? There must be a reason why travelers are willing to fork over money to fly on planes that are apparently so chronically delayed.

There is a balance between frequency and delays. One, as you rightly put it, is definitely linked to the other. However, as I've said already several times, for millions of people each year, the current balance is acceptable: sure, some flights are delayed, but that is okay because they like the flexibility of having flights constantly so they can get home early if their meeting raps up ahead of schedule, or stay later if the dinner meeting with the clients goes long.
 
bond007
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:13 am

Quoting Commavia (Reply 15):
Once again, though, you fail to explain: if customers are so fed up with all the delays, why do they continue to book tickets on these ORD-LGA flights?

Are you missing something?? They need to get from ORD to LGA that's why!

Quoting Commavia (Reply 15):
for millions of people each year, the current balance is acceptable

...and we know this because???

Ask all those pax what they would prefer: A flight every 2 hrs with a 20% probability of being delayed (and possibly cheaper), or an hourly flight that has a 60% probability.

Do you really think I care, as a weekly business traveller, whether my flight is at 7pm or 8pm, when I need to leave the office at 4pm and won't get home till 11pm (at best), regardless??

Jimbo
I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
 
DUSdude
Topic Author
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:16 am

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 12):
When the MD80 is always delayed, it makes very little difference ... in fact a huge advantage to less frequency if it means the 767 every 90 mins is more likely to depart on time.

Bingo!

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 12):
I'd love to know who these business travellers are? I stand around DCA every week, waiting for the late inbounds from LGA and BOS, see 3 shuttles to the same airport leaving within 40 mins of each other, and then a gap of 2 hrs before the next one .... all this time with 2,000 of these 'demanding' business travellers trying to go standby, change flights, etc. etc. etc.

Well, I am one of them. But apparently Commavia has decided that "the market" or "the customers" know better what they "want" than I, or any of the frustrated passengers I spoke to. He seems to not realize that tehre are many ways of satisfying customer demand, the current status quo being but one of them. Evidenly, other markets have found different solutions to similar problems.

Quoting Commavia (Reply 11):
Every market is different. In many European markets, where high-speed trains provide serious competition, there is far less time-sensitive demand for air travel, and many of the customers don't value the high-frequency shuttle-like schedule as much.

That is plain nonsense.

Quoting Commavia (Reply 11):
Although, that being said, I think it would be fairly hard to argue that this type of model doesn't exist in a very real way in other parts of the world: witness LH on FRA-MUC/-TXL, AZ on FCO-LIN, AF on ORY-NCE/-MRS, BA on LHR-GLA/-EDI/-MAN/-AMS/-BRU, JL/NH on HND-ITO, CX on HKG-TPE, QF on SYD-MEL/-BNE, JJ on SDU-CGH, SA on JNB-CPT, JJ on BOM-DEL, etc. In all of the above markets, a fairly high-frequency (at least relative to the size of the respective markets) shuttle-type operation is offered.

You are undermining your own argument there. Those examples you list are exactly the types of high volume shuttles I was speaking of where LH and BA operate much larger aircraft. E.g. LH FRA-TXL and FRA-MUC with A306. BA LHR-AMS and LHR-FRA with 763. So why not 763s on LGA-ORD? Must have better CASM, no?
 
commavia
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:17 am

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 16):
Are you missing something?? They need to get from ORD to LGA that's why!

Why not fly to Newark, then? Or White Plains? Or get a great fare on JetBlue and fly to JFK? Or fly out of Midway?

Why do you suppose it is, that given these attrocious delays that everyone seems to have experienced on this particular route, there are still so many people who choose to fly it?

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 16):
...and we know this because?

They still keep buying tickets.

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 16):
Ask all those pax what they would prefer: A flight every 2 hrs with a 20% probability of being delayed (and possibly cheaper), or an hourly flight that has a 60% probability.

The market has already asked them, and they have already answered with their wallets. They keep booking tickets, so they must find the present offering at least somewhat acceptable.

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 16):
Do you really think I care, as a weekly business traveller, whether my flight is at 7pm or 8pm, when I need to leave the office at 4pm and won't get home till 11pm (at best), regardless?

Well, no, I don't know what you care about -- that's between you and Orbitz. But I do know that many people do care about an extra hour of time: that is an extra hour they could be sitting down to lunch with their new clients, or sitting at the dinner table with their kids. For many people, that does mean a great deal.
 
DUSdude
Topic Author
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:19 am

Quoting ATLAaron (Reply 14):
Well to JFK UA has 1% whereas AA has 17%. (Delta has 37%)

To EWR UA has 30% and AA has 31%.

So according to MY numbers AA dominates in all three NYC airports.

Hope that is what you wanted, if not ask away . . .

Thanks, but the per-airport stats don't show the proportion of LGA to the entire New York-Chicago market. What's your source (just curious)?
 
DUSdude
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:23 am

Quoting Commavia (Reply 18):
Why not fly to Newark, then? Or White Plains? Or get a great fare on JetBlue and fly to JFK? Or fly out of Midway?

Why do you suppose it is, that given these attrocious delays that everyone seems to have experienced on this particular route, there are still so many people who choose to fly it?

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 16):
...and we know this because?

They still keep buying tickets.

You don't get it! It's not a choice! That's the only thing available! There is no high speed train and the few flights to EWR are usually full and priced higher, accordingly. There are just too few alternative seats available. Have you ever even flown that route or are you just posting for the heck of it? Do you know how much easier it is to find a seat to LGA than to EWR? Contrary to your belief, EWR is very popular, especially since the rail connection was inaugurated. The airlines just haven't responded to the demand yet.
 
commavia
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:24 am

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 17):
But apparently Commavia has decided that "the market" or "the customers" know better what they "want" than I

Indeed I have, because, after all, you DUSdude, are not "the market." There are millions of other people out there who obviously feel differently that you and Bond.

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 17):
BA LHR-AMS and LHR-FRA with 763. So why not 763s on LGA-ORD?

AA has 19 daily MD80s between ORD and LGA.
UA has 15 daily flights between ORD and LGA, with a mix of A319s, A320s, 737s, and 757s.

BA has 9 daily flights from LHR to AMS, with a mix of A319s and A320s, and sometimes a 757 or 767 thrown in.
BA has 8 daily flights from LHR to FRA, with a mix of mostly A319s and A320s, a few 757s, and a single 767 a few days per week.
LH has 14 daily flights from FRA to MUC, with mostly A319s/A320s/A321s and five A300s.

This is hardly an endorsement of your fewer flights/larger planes suggestion. This is reflective of far smaller markets with less demand for air travel, and -- alas -- relatively small planes, as well! BA flies mostly A319s from LHR to both cities, just as AA and UA fly "smaller" MD80s and 737s/A319s/A320s/MD80s between ORD and LGA.

Like I said, every market is completely different from every other market.
 
commavia
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:26 am

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 20):
Have you ever even flown that route or are you just posting for the heck of it?

Numerous times.

And, I might add, I've never once had a delay of more than 20 minutes. Anecdotal, I know, and I fully recognize that delays on the route persist, but thought I'd state for the record.

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 20):
Do you know how much easier it is to find a seat to LGA than to EWR? Contrary to your belief, EWR is very popular, especially since the rail connection was inaugurated.

I'm well aware, and know the New York area quite well. Indeed, EWR is my preferred airport in the region, too.
 
bond007
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:29 am

Quoting Commavia (Reply 18):
They still keep buying tickets.



Quoting Commavia (Reply 18):
They keep booking tickets, so they must find the present offering at least somewhat acceptable.

A very false assumption in any business. I'm a prime example of one of these 'business people' who disagree completely with always late, supposedly frequent flights, but I have little choice. I could show you hundreds of others at DCA every week.

Quoting Commavia (Reply 18):
But I do know that many people do care about an extra hour of time:

You are still missing the whole point of the thread. Very few of those hourly flights EVER depart on time at peak times ... we never get that extra hour.

Don't give the average business passenger too much credit for wanting this extra hour in meetings and/or with family. He's spending 6hrs or more on his trip, and it'll be 6hrs one week, 5hrs another, and 11hrs another .... 7 or 8pm is irrelevant.

Jimbo
I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
 
commavia
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:36 am

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 23):
You are still missing the whole point of the thread.

I guess what I would say is the same thing I said in a thread months back about why U.S. carriers continue to operate redeyes in both directions between the U.S. and South America, even though they could get much better utilization if they returned the plane back to the U.S. in the mornings.

If customers were sufficiently pissed off about delayed flights, and flights were truly late so often that it was no longer worth it for customers to have that extra flexibility inherent in frequent schedules, then things would change. The airline industry is intensely competitive, and thus intensely responsive to customer demand: airlines seem to feel that customers value a high frequency of flights and the convenience it affords. Several here on A.net obviously do not feel that way, but these airlines have obviously made the determination -- after analysis of the troves of data that none of us have access to -- that there are more people who would rather have frequent flights that sometimes get delayed, than less frequent flights with larger planes.

Perhaps they (the airlines) are wrong, and perhaps the market will change. But, again, there is obviously some reason why AA and UA are scheduling flights the way they do. And, as I said way back months ago in that U.S.-South America scheduling threat, it comes down to a simple thought experiment: if AA and UA thought that scheduling fewer flights with larger airplanes would be more popular with customers, and lead to more revenue, don't you think they would have done it already? As you rightly point it, it would definitely cut down on congestion, free up gate space and infrastructure, and free up aircraft capacity for other markets. But they still haven't done it. They have chosen to go with the costlier, less efficient, and more facility-intensive alternative. All I am saying is that there must be a reason why.
 
apodino
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:37 am

A farfetched idea that will never happen, but would address the issues.

Since AA and UA are both big in ORD, and passengers want hourly service, why not create a system where o and d passengers (We tend to forget that many passengers on these flights are connecting as well as O and D), can pay one fare, and it would be good on either airline. Miles can be earned in either program. Then you have AA run flights on the Odd hours, and UA run the even number flights, preferably with either 757's or 762's that don't have the international range. Would alleviate some of the demand in LGA, and would give everyone what they want.

Of course this idea is a pipe dream, but it has worked for Greyhound/Peter Ban bus lines on the BOS/NYC run for years.


This all comes back to the old problem. Airlines are overscheduling into these airports, and these airports cannot handle the demand, especially in IFR weather. In my opinion, if ORD can only land 80 an hour in IFR, then despite the fact they can land 96 in good weather, they should only be scheduling 80 arrivals an hour. The same is true in PHL, and all three NY airports. The airlines have created their own mess.
 
bond007
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 9:50 am

Quoting Commavia (Reply 24):
and flights were truly late so often that it was no longer worth it for customers to have that extra flexibility inherent in frequent schedules, then things would change.



Quoting Commavia (Reply 24):
and thus intensely responsive to customer demand:

We'll have to agree to disagree. The US airline industry is one of most out-of-touch, loss making, poorly managed industries out there.

Quoting Commavia (Reply 24):
Several here on A.net obviously do not feel that way, but these airlines have obviously made the determination -- after analysis of the troves of data that none of us have access to -- that there are more people who would rather have frequent flights that sometimes get delayed, than less frequent flights with larger planes.

Please let's not try and pretend that most of these a.netters fly every week, or even every 12 weeks.

I can tell you right now what they asked: "would you like a flight from DCA to BOS every hour, or one every 2 hours?" .... and what do you think the answer is from 100% of respondents??

Not quite the full question is it?

Quoting Commavia (Reply 24):
All I am saying is that there must be a reason why.

I wonder how many times we've said that about the US airline industry and it turned out to be a very poor reason why.

Jimbo
I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
 
RDUDDJI
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 11:00 am

For the record, I'm with Commavia. People get what they want. You'd be surprised how low of a load factor you need to make money when you're selling a high percentage of Y or walkup fares.

It's not AA or UA's fault those airports are frequently delayed...AA and UA don't operate this country's ATC system. Fix the real problem: Our nations pitiful ATC system. How did it get this bad you ask...Consumer Demand and poorly managed ATC resources.

Quoting ATLAaron (Reply 9):
Just a bit of information for the discussion AA has 52% of the traffic from ORD-LGA and UA has 41%.

Actually that's quite surprising considering how much UA has pulled back on NYC service.

Quoting ATLAaron (Reply 14):
So according to MY numbers AA dominates in all three NYC airports.

Not surprising considering they are the largest airline in the World and this is one of the top routes in the World.
Sometimes we don't realize the good times when we're in them
 
Flighty
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 11:04 am

AA and UA are the world's 2 biggest airlines.

NYC and Chicago are the 2 largest cities in the USA east of the Mississippi.

And they both have hubs at ORD. So, what's the big deal?
 
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N62NA
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 11:22 am

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
I much prefer flying into EWR, but there you have the opposite problem: too few flights

But still plenty of delays. I hate flying into EWR in the afternoons/evenings.

Quoting SkyyMaster (Reply 13):
AA and UA have pretty much been offering hourly services between these two airports since the 70's. It was not uncommon for each to have multiple DC10 and/or 767 equipment on the flights in the 70's and early 80's.

And, during that time TWA also offered hourly service on LGA-ORD.
 
JDAirCEO
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 11:31 am

As everyone has already said, business travlers appreciate the frequency of service. Being an AA person who only talks with AA's most profitable passengers, think above Executive Platinum, I talk with these people who spend top dollar on this route and are willing to pay thousands for the frequent service.

Yes there are delays and cutting a couple flights then placing a larger aircraft in there place would make sense, but from an operational and company stand point, it makes sense to maintian the status quo.
An MD-80 is great... in first class
 
bond007
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 11:57 am

Quoting JDAirCEO (Reply 30):
I talk with these people who spend top dollar on this route and are willing to pay thousands for the frequent service.

Oh, do you? Do they tell you what else they are willing to pay more thousands for, or didn't you ask the right question again ... like less delays ..perhaps price even??

Ask those 'above elite' people again, but this time tell them how much each of those 'hourly' flights were delayed (not AA data I know, but representative, trust me):

Tonight's UA ORD-LGA:

Schd Arr Delay

4:12pm 1hr
5:23pm 46mins
6:20pm 29mins
7:24pm 2hrs 1min
8:20pm 50mins
9:21pm 56mins

I make that 60mins on average .... bang goes that 'extra hour'. Oh, I see the 7:24pm flight arrived AFTER the 9:21pm flight would have done (if THAT was on time).... oh, that extra frequency is just great.

Jimbo
I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
 
UAL4ever
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 12:07 pm

I live in Chicago. As a frequent business traveler who has meetings in NYC on a steady basis those hourly flights are wonderful. I know that on UA what I do is fly ORD-LGA in the morning and book my return on the last flight that evening from LGA to ORD. That way whenever my meetings are over I can go to LGA and get on whichever flight is leaving at that time. Also, if my meetings run late I just catch the 8PM flight back. Those hourly flights are invaluable as I have never not gotten on an earlier flight as a standby. IF UA for example, began flying larger planes with less frequency and AA kept the hourly flights I would definitely fly AA for my New York trips.
 
wjcandee
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 12:18 pm

HELLO? The overall volume of flights out of and into LGA isn't going to be reduced, no matter what volume of flights and what size aircraft AA and UA use on the ORD route. Those slots would just be used for other service to other places. Of the slots available to them, UA and AA have decided that they wish to allocate a certain number to ORD service. And that's that. And there's nothing wrong with that.

If anyone wanted to cut volume at LGA, then they'd completely eliminate the RJ exemption for flights to Bumpkinville which Congress so brilliantly enacted through legislation to provide an economic benefit to Bumkinville by permitting planes that are far smaller than would normally be economical to plug into a "slot" to provide nonstop service to LGA. While that has been reduced somewhat, it's still asinine. Focus on that, and not on what AA and UA choose to do with what are indisputably mainline aircraft filling mainline aircraft slots.
 
ckfred
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 12:52 pm

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 1):
Hell, AA has 10 daily flights to LAX, only one of which is on a widebody).

It wasn't that many years ago that AA used to fly 8 or 9 daily departures, all with DC-10s and 767s. Then, it went to 16 departures with mostly MD-80s, a few 757s, and 1 or 2 767s.

As for ORD-LGA, people may understand that the route is subject to delays on both ends, but they always think that things will work out on the day they fly.

But that is primarily a business route, so people want choices, particularly if a meeting runs long or short.

I just flew AA on ORD-TPA-ORD, and the flight times stunk. Going down, the choices were 7:15am, 1:15pm and around 7pm. I would have preferred a departure between 9am and 11am. On the return, the choice was 8:30am, 11:30am, and 5:30pm. I would have liked a flight departing around 2pm. But that route is a leisure route, so the assumption is that people can work their schedules around AA's.

On a business route, people are going to fly when their schedule permits, and if AA doesn't have a flight, then they will go to UA.
 
Cubsrule
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 12:53 pm

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 8):
No that's not the problem. The problem are the people who run the airlines and think they can operate hourly flights out of such unsuitable airports.

Those CEOs. They have the NERVE to give people what they want. Shame.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
AADC10
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 2:45 pm

AA and UA's LGA-ORD flights are not the problem. They operate mainline jets that seat at least 104 passengers with the average being over 120 seats. Some of UA flights are 757s with 192 seats. The real killers are the 50 seat RJs.

While it is possible to operate fewer, larger planes, business passengers demand frequency. In the west during the WN vs. UA and AA wars, WN advertised frequency as often as low fares. Legacy carrier surveys continually show schedule as a higher priority for flights than fares for the all important business passengers. Besides, the 757 is about the largest aircraft that airlines have available for domestic flights to non-hubs and UA is already using it on that route.

There is no way that airlines will cut frequency and use planes larger than the 757 unless it is hub to hub, overwater or international. If really tight slot restrictions were imposed it is possible but even LGA is still far from it.
 
DiscoverCSG
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 10:21 pm

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 2):
And the customer is king however unrealistic or unreasonable?

Basically, yes. Our free-market economy rewards those who take the unrealistic and make it happen.

Quoting Commavia (Reply 18):
Why not fly to Newark, then? Or White Plains? Or get a great fare on JetBlue and fly to JFK? Or fly out of Midway?

Why do you suppose it is, that given these attrocious delays that everyone seems to have experienced on this particular route, there are still so many people who choose to fly it?

I used to live in Scarsdale, New York, a municipality that actually borders the city of White Plains. I was not a frequent traveler for work, but I was for other reasons. Guess what airport I preferred? LGA!!! Guess what airport my neighbors preferred? LGA!!! Guess what airport nobody ever mentioned using? HPN!!! Guess what airports people would laugh at you if you used for domestic flights? JFK!!! EWR!!! LGA is simply the closest airport with service to most destinations.

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 26):
I can tell you right now what they asked: "would you like a flight from DCA to BOS every hour, or one every 2 hours?" .... and what do you think the answer is from 100% of respondents??

Not quite the full question is it?

Yes, it basically is the full question. Slots at LGA and DCA are a scarce item, and there will never be enough to satisfy demand. Thus, if a cuople dozen slots went unused to ORD or some other market, another airline would apply for them and operate to other destinations - or maybe even back to ORD!!

From my metro NYC experience, travelers in that metro area (and also in BOS, DCA, ORD, and other congested metro areas), are simply used to delays in traveling by car, by train, by taxi, or by bus, and it's no big deal to have a delay on a plane.

Quoting Wjcandee (Reply 33):
HELLO? The overall volume of flights out of and into LGA isn't going to be reduced, no matter what volume of flights and what size aircraft AA and UA use on the ORD route. Those slots would just be used for other service to other places. Of the slots available to them, UA and AA have decided that they wish to allocate a certain number to ORD service. And that's that. And there's nothing wrong with that.

Put another way: Suppose the feds came in and announced a 10% (or whatever) reduction in slot capacity to LGA. What would airlines cut? Probably DL would move CHS service to JFK and AA might reduce service to Florida. ORD, DCA, and BOS shuttles are a fixture of the East Coast travel market because they meet demand. They aren't going anywhere anytime soon.
 
milesrich
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Tue May 08, 2007 10:44 pm

Hourly service between Chicago and New York is nothing new. In the mid to late 60's, American, TWA, and United all had hourly 727 service between ORD and LGA. (American had hourly service in 1950's with DC-6's.) And UA and AA have had continued an hourly type service since. AA introduced the DC-10 on the ORD-LGA route in 1971. United soon followed. It's all the RJ's that help clog up the system too. Unfortunately, only the Federal Government through the use of slot restrictions can really solve this problem. It makes a lot more sense to fly a wide body 400p, 500p, and 600 pm than it does to have MD-80's every half hour during these peak times. But one airline can't solve the problem on their own, and they can't get together and schedule either because of anti trust laws. And be assured of one more thing, as long as the GOP controls the White House, the government will take no action to restrict business, unless there is a real emergency event, ala 9/11. In the meantime, our air traffic control system, which could still work relatively well, becomes a real mess, every time a line of T-storms approaches ORD.
 
commavia
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Wed May 09, 2007 12:08 am

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 38):
And be assured of one more thing, as long as the GOP controls the White House, the government will take no action to restrict business, unless there is a real emergency event, ala 9/11. In the meantime, our air traffic control system, which could still work relatively well, becomes a real mess, every time a line of T-storms approaches ORD.

Plans to "restrict business" or not are hardly monopolized by a single party. Every politician has their favorite industries -- some have airlines, others auto manufacturers, others trial lawyers. Nobody restricts those who pay their campaign bills, and that goes for both parties.

And as for the pothetic state of the U.S. ATC system, that is certainly something that every president, from every party, deserves blame for. Congress and every Presidents for decades have been tapping into the ATC funds to pay for pet projects, and using it as a slush fund to finance other priorities. Meanwhile, government bureaucracy continues to get in the way of the FAA actually improving anything.

Rather than talking about artificially restricting demand and augmenting the market, as many political types often like to contemplate, why not actually fix the root problem -- the sad disrepair of our ailing national ATC system -- so that air travel capacity can continue to keep up with demand?
 
ChicagoFlyer
Posts: 210
Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2006 9:00 am

RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Wed May 09, 2007 3:46 am

Quoting Apodino (Reply 25):
A farfetched idea that will never happen, but would address the issues.

Since AA and UA are both big in ORD, and passengers want hourly service, why not create a system where o and d passengers (We tend to forget that many passengers on these flights are connecting as well as O and D), can pay one fare, and it would be good on either airline. Miles can be earned in either program. Then you have AA run flights on the Odd hours, and UA run the even number flights, preferably with either 757's or 762's that don't have the international range. Would alleviate some of the demand in LGA, and would give everyone what they want.

Of course this idea is a pipe dream, but it has worked for Greyhound/Peter Ban bus lines on the BOS/NYC run for years.

Well, this airline choice idea is already here if you happened to have paid the top fare for the daily roundtrip. If for some reason AA is delayed you walk over to UA and lose nothing by abandoning your original flight. (No they have not linked the FF programs yet, but again--if you are a high-yielding top elite customer, you will be able to switch and keep your status). If you are a leisure traveler, your options are a lot more limited of course...

P.S. Commavia, DUS, Jimbo -- peace!
 
nycfuturepilot
Posts: 773
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Wed May 09, 2007 4:18 am

Quoting DUSdude (Reply 2):
And the customer is king however unrealistic or unreasonable?

yes.
Father, Son, HOYA spirit
 
bond007
Posts: 4428
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Wed May 09, 2007 4:34 am

Quoting Nycfuturepilot (Reply 41):
Quoting DUSdude (Reply 2):
And the customer is king however unrealistic or unreasonable?

yes.

Most probably explains why airlines have been such a loss making industry. The customer wants cheap flights, so give it to them, at whatever cost (literally).

Of course, in reality the customer is rarely king. Even those that disagree with me on this thread, can easily come up with a list of reasonable expectations for airlines, that will never be realized .... wider seats, bigger seat pitch, less delays, a higher level of customer service, no change fees ... etc. etc. etc.

I have a hard time thinking that most of the legacies have anything but little respect for the customer, based upon their generally appalling levels of customer service (WN and a few others excepted). I tend to believe it's no coincidence that those successful airlines, are also those that have the better levels of customer service ...call WN and get a cheerful person in the USA in 2 or 3 rings.


Jimbo
I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
 
SkyyMaster
Posts: 1082
Joined: Sun Feb 11, 2007 7:34 am

RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Wed May 09, 2007 4:39 am

Quoting N62NA (Reply 29):
And, during that time TWA also offered hourly service on LGA-ORD.

Ah yes, thanks for the reminder. My brother was even an TW flight engineer on a CV880 back then, can't imagine how I forgot that they also flew this hourly.
 
sllevin
Posts: 3314
Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2002 1:57 pm

RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Wed May 09, 2007 4:43 am

Quoting Bond007 (Reply 16):
Do you really think I care, as a weekly business traveller, whether my flight is at 7pm or 8pm, when I need to leave the office at 4pm and won't get home till 11pm (at best), regardless??

According to the numbers posted by 787EWR for March 2007 the average delay was just 30 minutes.

Thus, hourly flights DO make sense on the average. Oh, there are days when things go bad, sure, but on average, hourly departures work -- and people prefer them.

I can't speak to the ORD-LGA route, but I CAN speak to the SJC-LAX route, which I fly all the time -- and I fly Southwest (even though I am EXP on AA) because they have far more flights, and if I get done earlier, I can get home earlier. Or if I need to leave late, I can do that too!

Steve
 
787EWR
Posts: 162
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RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Wed May 09, 2007 4:57 am

Quoting Apodino (Reply 25):
Since AA and UA are both big in ORD, and passengers want hourly service, why not create a system where o and d passengers (We tend to forget that many passengers on these flights are connecting as well as O and D), can pay one fare, and it would be good on either airline. Miles can be earned in either program. Then you have AA run flights on the Odd hours, and UA run the even number flights, preferably with either 757's or 762's that don't have the international range. Would alleviate some of the demand in LGA, and would give everyone what they want.

Great idea, but reality says that the customers won't be happy. Customer A's company has free miles on United. He wants to get to Chicago by 11am, but in order to do that, he would have to leave his house at 6am instead of 7am. People will complain about anything.

I noticed a few things after looking at both websites.

American never flies anything but an MD-80, while United uses B-757, A320, A-319 and 737 aircraft.

United leaves on the hour, while Amierican sometimes has a flight at *:10 am and *:25.

If you consider that LGA has the LGA-ORD, as well as the LGA-DCA and LGA-BOS and vise versa, you can understand the amount of traffic.
 
Jaws707
Posts: 667
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2001 10:45 am

RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Wed May 09, 2007 5:03 am

I agree that there are probably too many frequencies on this route. I flew the route in March, the night before I left ORD it was hit by a bunch of thunderstorms, when I got to the airport in the morning I went through "hell." 5 hrs of waiting around, then they finally decide to cancel the flight and I got rerouted through DCA. It took me over 12 hrs to get to LGA. The basic point many of you are missing is quite simple, replace a FEW (not all) of the small aircraft with larger ones. So for example if AA has 17 roundtrip flights on MD80's, replace that with 10 MD-80 roundtrips and 3 757 roundtrips. Now you have 13 daily roundtrips, which is more then enough, and you have some slack built into the system so the flights are not all right on top of each other in case delays occur.
Think about how less flights would work for a second. (Assume # seats stays the same)
Less cost for airlines because less take offs and landings and less crews to pay for
Less cost for taxpayers because airports wouldn't have to constantly be expanded to accomodate additional flights
Less cost for the environment, less planes flying equals less pollution.
The only people who lose are the ones who want maximum flexibiliy. I think its a pretty good trade off
 
bond007
Posts: 4428
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2005 2:07 am

RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Wed May 09, 2007 5:14 am

Quoting Sllevin (Reply 44):
the average delay was just 30 minutes.

Thus, hourly flights DO make sense on the average.

Well, my personal opinions aside ....but just from a technical standpoint ... so a flight at 7:45 (delayed 7:00), followed by another at 8:00pm, and then 2 flights at 10:00pm (one scheduled, one 9:00pm delayed), works ??

..and that's only an average delay of less than 30 minutes!

Any delay of 30mins or more, when operating hourly flights, make the benefits of higher frequency almost non-existent.

Jimbo
I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
 
Cubsrule
Posts: 14270
Joined: Sat May 15, 2004 12:13 pm

RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Wed May 09, 2007 6:15 am

Quoting Jaws707 (Reply 46):
So for example if AA has 17 roundtrip flights on MD80's, replace that with 10 MD-80 roundtrips and 3 757 roundtrips. Now you have 13 daily roundtrips, which is more then enough, and you have some slack built into the system so the flights are not all right on top of each other in case delays occur.

UA could run 20 735 flights. They choose not to. AA could run 50 ERJ flights. They choose not to. Aren't the carriers in the best position to balance frequency and capacity?
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
DUSdude
Topic Author
Posts: 109
Joined: Tue May 08, 2007 4:20 am

RE: AA/UA LGA-ORD Too Small/too Frequent

Wed May 09, 2007 6:39 am

I have to say, I am surprised at the vehemence with which some people defend the status quo as if it were some glorified ideal state and not merely transient, waiting for a better idea to come along. I do appreciate the few substantive posts here with some helpful information that explains why we are were we are in teh US airline business.

Just to clear a few things up:

Quoting Commavia (Reply 21):
AA has 19 daily MD80s between ORD and LGA.
UA has 15 daily flights between ORD and LGA, with a mix of A319s, A320s, 737s, and 757s.

BA has 9 daily flights from LHR to AMS, with a mix of A319s and A320s, and sometimes a 757 or 767 thrown in.
BA has 8 daily flights from LHR to FRA, with a mix of mostly A319s and A320s, a few 757s, and a single 767 a few days per week.
LH has 14 daily flights from FRA to MUC, with mostly A319s/A320s/A321s and five A300s.

This is hardly an endorsement of your fewer flights/larger planes suggestion. This is reflective of far smaller markets with less demand for air travel, and -- alas -- relatively small planes, as well! BA flies mostly A319s from LHR to both cities, just as AA and UA fly "smaller" MD80s and 737s/A319s/A320s/MD80s between ORD and LGA.

Like I said, every market is completely different from every other market.

I hope you realize this is nonsense and that you are once again undermining your own argument. You are comparing the entire LGA-ORD market to only bits of other markets. If you look at LHR-FRA on BA, you have to add the same sector on LH as well (a number of different aircraft types, including A300). If you look at FRA-TXL on LH, you also have to look at the same sector on GEXX/Air Berlin and the hourly high-speed ICE trains. These are very comparable markets in volumes and frequencies. And the fact that the airlines I mentioned (BA and UA) use a variety of equipment on these routes, shows that some airlines are just more flexible than UA and AA. Having flown on those sectors very frequently as well (and without delays!) I can attest that there is absolutely no lack of choice in flight times. I might add LH is a lot more profitable these days than UA and AA.

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