AirframeAS
Posts: 9811
Joined: Thu Feb 05, 2004 3:56 pm

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 7:01 pm

Quoting ModernArt (Reply 43):
However, you do realize that SWA has already purchased two airlines in its history and some would say saved a third from going out of business totally?

That point is moot. It doesn't matter what WN did in the past.

Quoting ModernArt (Reply 43):
Only you have mentioned SWA being acquired.

Dude, look at it from BOTH sides of the equation. It will come to you, trust me.

Quoting Joeljack (Reply 45):
Do Southwest 737-700's uses the same engines as the Airtran -700's?

Yes, CFM-56-7's.

Quoting KcrwFlyer (Reply 47):
I think there are different thrust variants of the same engine.

 checkmark  All the 737NG's use the same engine. The thrust settings vary from airline to airline.
A Safe Flight Begins With Quality Maintenance On The Ground.
 
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STT757
Posts: 13979
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 7:04 pm

Quoting Joeljack (Reply 48):
Thanks...Interesting...so who has the monopoly?

CFM International.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_737
Eastern Air lines flt # 701, EWR-MCO Boeing 757
 
Type-Rated
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 7:07 pm

Quoting Jetdeltamsy (Reply 14):
I think Leonard probably sold his shares (if he, in fact, actauly did) because oil is at $100 a barrel and we're about to see the industry hit the skids big time. Yet another highly unprofitable period is probably in store us. And soon. Oh joy. He's just cashing out like any smart business person would do.

With the Dow losing almost 1,000 points in the past few weeks and a lot of major companies in various sectors reporting losses and write downs, I think the market in general is going to take a nose dive within the next two quarters or so. Maybe he's just cashing in some of his profits for placement in a more stable place, CD's, etc.
Fly North Central Airlines..The route of the Northliners!
 
OB1504
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 7:11 pm

Quoting Srbmod (Reply 3):
If Southwest really wanted to buy out another airline, they would have bought out ATA (At least the scheduled side of the operation) when they had the chance.

Perhaps WN is considering an arrangement with FL similar to the one they currently have with TZ?
 
socalfive
Posts: 474
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2001 5:37 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 7:11 pm

Quoting MKENut (Reply 11):
I think Joe dumped his shares because he knew AAI stock was going to tank in the 4th quarter because of the prospect of 100 dollar per bbl of oil

The smart money now would be exactly THAT, get out and put the worthless dollars into real money Euros, Pounds, or precious metals. The Dollar is dying a fast death and the fuel expense is but one of many signs.

As far as a merger with Airtran, I would be shocked. Keep in mind, these are two companies that aren't "broken" and have very different cultures. Put them together, and they will be broken in the effort. The combined entity would drown in red ink as they put it all together, there would be union issues, employee discontent on epic scales (As there always is, now imagine this on the reality of two companies that are both successful). Ain't a gonna happen, they don't need each other and the final product would be less than what they are now and the internal distraction of the merger gives everyone else prime positioning to steal market share.
 
AirframeAS
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 7:16 pm

Quoting OB1504 (Reply 53):
Perhaps WN is considering an arrangement with FL similar to the one they currently have with TZ?

That is a possibility. I'll buy that. But to merge, no. But what does OPNL think?
A Safe Flight Begins With Quality Maintenance On The Ground.
 
OPNLguy
Posts: 11191
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 7:25 pm

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 55):
That is a possibility. I'll buy that. But to merge, no. But what does OPNL think?

Like I said earlier, it's rumor #37...  Wink BTSOOM....

Quoting Joeljack (Reply 45):
Do Southwest 737-700's uses the same engines as the Airtran -700's?

WN's -700s have 24K engines, and I guessing FL's might be the same. Even if FL's are only 22K, it's a relatively easy upgrade to 24K (like we did via "screwdriver" and certification paperwork changes), and if they have 26K engines, we could always run them de-rated.

All hypothetically speaking, or course...

Now,about rumor #38...  Wink
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
ConcordeBoy
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 7:44 pm

Quoting Joeljack (Reply 45):
Do Southwest 737-700's uses the same engines as the Airtran -700's?

...all 737NGs utilize the same engine, just slight thrust variations.
Faire du ciel le plus bel endroit de la terre c'est impossible sans Concorde!
 
iflyswa
Posts: 98
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 8:44 pm

Quoting Frontierflyer (Reply 44):
Once you try imitating the big boys then you will have the same results, not good!

Not sure what you're getting at? Southwest is one of the biggest out there, in the second quarter 2007 surpassing American as the world's largest airline by passengers carried.

Besides, for the first time in a long time the "big boys" are making money (though mostly at the expense of their Employees and level of service to the Customer). Those airlines are doing well relative to how they were doing, and it's making it harder for Southwest to stay comptitive.

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 27):
WN will never buy another carrier. Why fix something that isn't broken. WN is doing just fine itself.

The reason those "big boys" got themselves into the trouble they did, dragging through bankruptcy all those times, forced to cut jobs and cancel Employee benefits, is because they imagined themselves to be invincible to threats posed by all the AirTrans, jetBlues, Southwests, etc. Southwest got to be as big and successful as it has because the "big boys" chose to discount Southwest as a threat to their marketshare. Until the mid-1990s, Southwest was still regarded by most in the industry as a regional carrier! A perfect example of the type of mentality that plagued the industry then is United, an airline that grew so big that management believed size alone ordained United to dominance of the skies over all other carriers for all time.

No airline can remain static in an industry that changes as quickly as ours, and this isn't something that's lost on Southwest. Herbert D. Kelleher has said, regarding this issue, that "resting on your laurels is a sure way to get a thorn in your butt." Anyone that believes Southwest isn't prepared to depart from it's business model if it sees it can be successful in some other way is a fool. Southwest has been making tweaks to its model since 1971, responding (mostly proactively), to changes that were going on in the industry. Southwest hasn't found its success standing by while everyone else went bankrupt and downsized (though it has given Southwest opportunity to grow where it might not have otherwise). Southwest is only successful because it was able to identify threats to its business and make the changes necessary to remain successful before the rest of the industry was busy trying to bail themselves out.

I can't say whether FL would be a good WN merger candidate. As far as I know, Gary Kelly has made no mention of any desire to make a bid at another airline, but far be it for me to say that such a thing will never happen. I wouldn't be shocked if it did, it would really just be par for the course for Southwest.

iflyswa
Opinions expressed by "iflyswa" are not those of Southwest Airlines Officers, Directors, or Employees.
 
swatpamike
Posts: 469
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 10:20 pm

Hello All

I have been hoping that we would buy AirTran for years.

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 1):
Though WN isn't a hub/spoke carrier, WN could dehub ATL and make it a major city instead,

Nope

Southwest would run AirTran as a separate airline, keeping the ATL hub and focus on flights using the 717 on the East Coast.

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 1):
or the 717s could be sold off

See Above

Quoting Isitsafenow (Reply 4):
WN bought Morris because it was cheap way
to pick up a few more planes they desperately needed at that time in their history of growth and competing
with America West.

 checkmark  checkmark 

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 8):
What would be the point when basically all the routes that Southwest wants from Air Tran,

WRONG

ATL
MKE
LGA
EWR
CLT
CHS
MEM
SAV
DCA
and others

Cheers

swatpamike
 
swatpamike
Posts: 469
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 10:32 pm

Hello All

Great post iflyswa, welcome to my RM list.

Quoting Flying_727 (Reply 16):
Why does everyone keep saying this? If they are really desperate for more 737's the wouldn't have deferred/ slowed down deliveries.

Southwest would if they thought that they could pick some up in buying AirTran.

Cheers

swatpamike

[Edited 2007-11-11 14:36:01]
 
7e72004
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 10:42 pm

I don't see what much of ATA is left for WN to buy. Although they do have the Hawaii routes but they are such a small fraction of what they were in, let's say 2003-2004. I would not be surprised that if at some point, WN gets some of their aircraft ETOPS certified and starts the Hawaii service themselves and then ATA just stops the scheduled service altogether.
The next generation of aircraft is just around the corner!
 
vega
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 11:21 pm

Quoting 7E72004 (Reply 61):
I don't see what much of ATA is left for WN to buy.......

Well they have currently 10 757s, 3 active DC10s (+ 5 Stored), and 3 active L1011-500s. All of those aircraft could, when made available from other routes/ferrying, fly Trans-Atlantic and/or Caribbean from the Northeast Coast to support an already advertised intent by WN to start international services - particularly after next March (2008). I'm not saying they'd be the best for the job, but they would do fine for route performance proving runs for a year ot two, maybe code-sharing with Ryanair. I'd speculate that if WN does do Europe (alone or via ATA), it would likely be via secondary markets in the British Isles, Spain and maybe one other country.
We are but a moment in this vast Universe and when gone we will never have existed.
 
frontierflyer
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Sun Nov 11, 2007 11:45 pm

Quoting Iflyswa (Reply 58):
Quoting Frontierflyer (Reply 44):
Once you try imitating the big boys then you will have the same results, not good!

Not sure what you're getting at? Southwest is one of the biggest out there, in the second quarter 2007 surpassing American as the world's largest airline by passengers carried.

Besides, for the first time in a long time the "big boys" are making money (though mostly at the expense of their Employees and level of service to the Customer). Those airlines are doing well relative to how they were doing, and it's making it harder for Southwest to stay comptitive.

Flying to congested, expensive, slot limited, hub airports is what I was getting at. You are absolutely right, WN does need to change now that you have the Jet blues, Virgins, Frontiers, Delta/Song changing the way we fly.
 
B757capt
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Mon Nov 12, 2007 12:54 am

Quoting Vega (Reply 62):
Well they have currently 10 757s, 3 active DC10s (+ 5 Stored), and 3 active L1011-500s.

Are those numbers correct? Thats unreal considering what they did have.

Anyone know the status of the 737-300's/737-800's.


Also, How many of these aircraft are on leases? Does ATA own anything?
The views written by this user are in no manner the views of my employer and should not be thought as such.
 
cjpark
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Mon Nov 12, 2007 3:36 pm

Quoting Iflyswa (Reply 58):
Besides, for the first time in a long time the "big boys" are making money (though mostly at the expense of their Employees and level of service to the Customer). Those airlines are doing well relative to how they were doing, and it's making it harder for Southwest to stay comptitive

The legacies had to dumb down service to Southwest levels to be competitive with fares. Isn't it funny how Southwest offers squat for service other than drink service and a bag a peanuts and people fall all over themselves to say how great that service is but when any other airline offers the same level of service that airlines customer service is poor? Double standard or inbred prejudice?

It would be a terrible shame if Southwest were to buy Airtran since that would certainly Southwestisize (ruin) a really good airline.
"Any airline that wants to serve the [region] can go to DFW today and fly anywhere they want," WN spokesman Ed Stewart
 
reality
Posts: 435
Joined: Fri Apr 06, 2007 1:01 pm

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Mon Nov 12, 2007 3:57 pm

Quoting Cjpark (Reply 65):
Isn't it funny how Southwest offers squat for service other than drink service and a bag a peanuts and people fall all over themselves to say how great that service is but when any other airline offers the same level of service that airlines customer service is poor? Double standard or inbred prejudice?

But that's the brilliance of WN. They set the expectations very low, and then they are able to meet those expectations and the customers are happy because they got what they expected. And WN delivers "squat for service" with a smile.

Many other airlines promise more in their advertising, and then can't deliver--and often with no smile.
 
OB1504
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Mon Nov 12, 2007 4:06 pm

Quoting Reality (Reply 66):
But that's the brilliance of WN. They set the expectations very low, and then they are able to meet those expectations and the customers are happy because they got what they expected. And WN delivers "squat for service" with a smile.

Many other airlines promise more in their advertising, and then can't deliver--and often with no smile.

 checkmark  Amen!

Anyone would expect more flying MIA-JFK/LGA/EWR on a major international carrier like AA, DL, or CO, than they would flying FLL-ISP on WN.
 
MKENut
Posts: 157
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Mon Nov 12, 2007 9:40 pm

Quoting Cjpark (Reply 65):
It would be a terrible shame if Southwest were to buy Airtran since that would certainly Southwestisize (ruin) a really good airline.

Funny, that is how I felt when AirTran wanted to merge with Midwest.
 
atrude777
Posts: 4352
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RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Mon Nov 12, 2007 9:44 pm

Quoting Cjpark (Reply 65):
Isn't it funny how Southwest offers squat for service other than drink service and a bag a peanuts and people fall all over themselves to say how great that service is but when any other airline offers the same level of service that airlines customer service is poor? Double standard or inbred prejudice?

Offering free complimentary drinks on every single flight leg, pillows, blankets, leather seats, one of the nations largests seat pitch, very frequent flights, and usually (note i said USUALLY) low fares is squat for service?

Versus AA who does not offer food of some sort on some legs (ie MCO-MIA i got nothing on board) nor pillows or blankets on most flights if any?

WN didn't force the legacies to do anything, they chose to take the path they did.

Alex
Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
 
luvfa
Posts: 342
Joined: Wed May 25, 2005 10:05 pm

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Mon Nov 12, 2007 11:53 pm

Quoting OB1504 (Reply 67):
Anyone would expect more flying MIA-JFK/LGA/EWR on a major international carrier like AA, DL, or CO, than they would flying FLL-ISP on WN.

I don't know! Ever work a FLL-ISP flight? LOL
 
rdwelch
Posts: 449
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:52 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 12:23 am

Quoting Jetdeltamsy (Reply 14):
Southwest puts on a "folksy" front to customers. On the business side, theirs is an image of ruthlessly competitve behavior and no nonsense, stockholder friendly business decisions.

It's already been addressed, but I have to say it again. It's called running a business. Well.

Quoting Cjpark (Reply 65):
The legacies had to dumb down service to Southwest levels to be competitive with fares. Isn't it funny how Southwest offers squat for service other than drink service and a bag a peanuts and people fall all over themselves to say how great that service is but when any other airline offers the same level of service that airlines customer service is poor? Double standard or inbred prejudice?

And that is answered by this....

Quoting Reality (Reply 66):
But that's the brilliance of WN. They set the expectations very low, and then they are able to meet those expectations and the customers are happy because they got what they expected. And WN delivers "squat for service" with a smile.

Many other airlines promise more in their advertising, and then can't deliver--and often with no smile.



Quoting Atrude777 (Reply 69):
Offering free complimentary drinks on every single flight leg, pillows, blankets, leather seats, one of the nations largests seat pitch, very frequent flights, and usually (note i said USUALLY) low fares is squat for service?

Again, I agree with most of this, except for the "nation's largest seat pitch" (fair use, and edited). F9, even after the extra row is added will have more seat pitch. (Not by much though).

Gus.
They say I have ADD, but they don't understand..Oh look! A chicken!
 
atrude777
Posts: 4352
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2003 11:23 pm

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 12:26 am

Quoting Rdwelch (Reply 71):
Again, I agree with most of this, except for the "nation's largest seat pitch" (fair use, and edited). F9, even after the extra row is added will have more seat pitch. (Not by much though).

You left out a key word of my sentence, i claimed ONE of....

F9 is still at 33 inches of pitch, as is WN. B6 is the only one larger with the 34 inches in the front and 36 in the back I believe?

Alex
Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
 
SkyyMaster
Posts: 1082
Joined: Sun Feb 11, 2007 7:34 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 12:28 am

Quoting Cjpark (Reply 65):
The legacies had to dumb down service to Southwest levels to be competitive with fares. Isn't it funny how Southwest offers squat for service other than drink service and a bag a peanuts and people fall all over themselves to say how great that service is but when any other airline offers the same level of service that airlines customer service is poor? Double standard or inbred prejudice?

Right, and not to mention they fly more domestic pax than any other airline; they generally have the nicest employees with the best attitudes; the fewest complaints; rank at or near the top in customer satisfaction surveys. Seems to me like the legacies had to wise up to WN's level, not the other way around as you refer to it. Ask the CEO of every LCC startup on the planet who their role model is/was. Hmmm...Southwest. Yeah, the true mark of a crappy airline.
 
rdwelch
Posts: 449
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:52 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 12:33 am

Quoting Atrude777 (Reply 72):
You left out a key word of my sentence, i claimed ONE of....

F9 is still at 33 inches of pitch, as is WN. B6 is the only one larger with the 34 inches in the front and 36 in the back I believe?

Alex

You're correct, I did omit the entire phrase and I apologize for the error.

Everytime I'm on a WN flight, it does seem tighter to me than an F9 flight.

Gus
They say I have ADD, but they don't understand..Oh look! A chicken!
 
HeavyMX1
Posts: 241
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:09 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 3:49 am

I doubt Joe Leonard would have just sold all his stock at the current price its at if there was any chance of a take over. He would have kept it because any offer right now would more than likely be above the current stock prices and he would make a hell of alot more money.....
I am better than you because I live on an Island
 
quickmover
Posts: 2198
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2004 4:28 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 3:57 am



Quoting HeavyMx1 (Reply 75):
I doubt Joe Leonard would have just sold all his stock at the current price its at if there was any chance of a take over. He would have kept it because any offer right now would more than likely be above the current stock prices and he would make a hell of alot more money.....

That makes more sense than anything I've read on this thread. Maybe he will do something along the lines of Lewis Jordan eventually and start another carrier like Aleigent.
 
GARUDAROD
Posts: 1150
Joined: Wed Apr 19, 2000 4:39 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 4:32 am

The whole premise that WN does not change their standard format, has gone out the window.
No long hauls, only short hops. Gone-Look at their route system.
No major hubs or delay prone airports. Wrong, see DEN, SFO, PHL etc
No provisions for Business Class. Wrong again, look at the recent upgrades to their fare structure and
Frequent flyer program.
No change to the boarding process. Wrong yet again, revised to be more effective and reflect current times.
WN did not get where they are without excepting change. If the possibillity arose to pick up FL at a
reasonable price, they would jump at that chance. More aircraft, built in access with numerous gates
at one of the most travelled airports in the country, slots to traffic restrained airports, sell off the
non-similiar fleet to recoup their costs. We might be asking why would they NOT look at FL, rather
than they will never do it.
Cargo doesn't whine, moan, or complain
 
iflyswa
Posts: 98
Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2006 3:09 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 8:30 am



Quoting Cjpark (Reply 65):
The legacies had to dumb down service to Southwest levels to be competitive with fares. Isn't it funny how Southwest offers squat for service other than drink service and a bag a peanuts and people fall all over themselves to say how great that service is but when any other airline offers the same level of service that airlines customer service is poor? Double standard or inbred prejudice?

You're right, Southwest's inflight service isn't anything extraordinary, but that's never been Southwest's goal. The mission was, and still is, "dedication to the highest quality of Customer Service delivered with a sense of warmth, friendliness, individual pride, and Company Spirit." High quality doesn't necessarily equate to a five course meal and complimentary hot towel service; it can come along with peanuts, pretzels, and a Coke, too. What Southwest does better than the legacies, in my own observation, is consistency in their approach to level of service. Customers have grown to expect consistent service throughout the system, and far more often than not, those expectations are met or even exceeded.

Other airlines (legacies in particular) might offer the same service, but consistency is a problem, Employee morale is a bigger problem, and cash flow has really been the underlying problem for quite some time, especially after the post-9/11 industry downturn. It should go without saying that airlines no longer compete in the same environment they did before 9/11, the game has changed permanently and irreversibly. Cost is king, not Customer comfort or convenience. Comparatively speaking in this new, über-competitive market, Customer service today--in fact, the entire airline travel experience--bears little resemblance to what it was even a decade ago because superfluous costs had to be cut from the budget simply to guarantee survival--costs like inflight meals, pillows, blankets, and Employee job security. It just happened that Southwest was in a much better position at the time to adapt to the onslaught of changes without sacrificing many of the things that Customers expect because low(er) unit costs have always been the primary driver behind their success.

This is not a double standard: Southwest is better overall at delivering a complete Customer experience, as told by the mission statement and evidenced by their loyal Customer base. While the bits about warmth, friendliness, pride and Company Spirit are hokey, they are undeniably important to the People of Southwest Airlines, and Employees take them very seriously. Service goes far beyond the peanuts and soda, and if that was all Southwest Customers got onboard the aircraft, then Southwest might be giving abysmal service to rival some of the others'.

iflyswa
Opinions expressed by "iflyswa" are not those of Southwest Airlines Officers, Directors, or Employees.
 
dispatchguy
Posts: 627
Joined: Sun Jan 29, 2006 6:08 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 9:09 am

Iflyswa, truer words were never spoken...  Wink
Nobody screws you better than an airline job!
 
cjpark
Posts: 1225
Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2005 1:46 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 10:39 am

Southwest Airlines lowered the service expectations of an entire industry and people who are most likely Southwest employees flood an airline forum gushing about how great it is. Wonder why that is?

Face it folks Southwest has the same problems as any other airline except that it has more cheerleaders than any other airline to obfuscate the situation. Your customers experience it daily.

Hopefully Southwest will not be able to buy any other carriers. We need competition not consolidation.
"Any airline that wants to serve the [region] can go to DFW today and fly anywhere they want," WN spokesman Ed Stewart
 
AirframeAS
Posts: 9811
Joined: Thu Feb 05, 2004 3:56 pm

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 1:23 pm



Quoting GARUDAROD (Reply 77):
No major hubs or delay prone airports. Wrong, see DEN, SFO, PHL etc

WN doesn't have hubs. Read Herb's book.
A Safe Flight Begins With Quality Maintenance On The Ground.
 
PHLBOS
Posts: 6520
Joined: Thu Apr 01, 2004 6:38 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 1:32 pm

Quoting GARUDAROD (Reply 77):
No long hauls, only short hops. Gone-Look at their route system.

Actually, WN has recently reduced or eliminated some their longhaul routes: examples: PHL-LAX & PHL-OAK non-stops are no longer offered.

Quoting GARUDAROD (Reply 77):
No major hubs or delay prone airports. Wrong, see AND CURRENT: Denver - International (DEN / KDEN), USA - Colorado">DEN, SFO, PHL etc

IIRC, wasn't WN planning on eliminating SFO not too long ago; especially since they do serve nearby OAK?
Not sure about the reasoning behind picking DEN over COS other than to frustrate F9; but PHL was chosen (and I've said this over a dozen times in the past) because US (pre-HP merger) was heading towards liquidation AND FL was starting to grow PHL. WN was NOT let PHL (which would have become a ghost-town had US died) become another hub for FL or let B6 come in.

Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 7):
People that is why it is called a rumor, not an once of truth to it.

While there certainly has been a lot of rumors regarding airlines on this board; however, WN's actions over the last few years could cause one to either suspect or even consider the possiblity. Let me outline the timeline of events (I mentioned these a couple times before):

1. Late 2003: 2-months from the day an article in the Philadelphia Inquirer mentioning that FL experienced the highest percentage growth out of any carrier at PHL; WN announces that it will be starting service in PHL nearly 6 months later. At present, FL has eliminated all non-ATL, non-FLA routes out of PHL.

2. 2004-2005: FL attempts to expand service over at DFW; WN intially ponders starting service at DFW but instead breaks their 25-year silence and legally challenges the Wright Ammendment and even gets a provision that reduces the amount of available gates for other carriers. This move prevents other carriers from either moving to DAL (FL) or starting Dallas service out of DAL (B6) once the last remnants of the Ammendment is repealed 7 years from now. Since then, FL has eliminated all but ATL, BWI & MCO routes.

3. 2004-2005: TZ files for Chapter 11. HP considers buying TZ outright but later declines thereby giving FL what many thought would be smooth sailing in its bid for many of TZ's assets and MDW gates. Out of nowhere, WN comes in and outbids FL; the WN-TZ codeshare is born and regional carrier, C8, dies.

Looking at the above-3 events; almost everyone can agree that WN's latest moves have definitely frustrated FL. Suspecting an aquisition rumor (true or false), in this particular case, would not necessarily be too far out.

[Edited 2007-11-13 05:33:36]
"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981
 
bobnwa
Posts: 4514
Joined: Fri Dec 22, 2000 12:10 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 1:33 pm



Quoting Quickmover (Reply 76):
That makes more sense than anything I've read on this thread. Maybe he will do something along the lines of Lewis Jordan eventually and start another carrier like Aleigent.

Do all of you still realize that Joe Leonard is still the Chairman of the board of AirTran? He is still the ultimate boss.
 
floorrunner
Posts: 187
Joined: Thu Jan 08, 2004 7:11 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 1:47 pm

[quote=Cjpark,reply=80]Southwest Airlines lowered the service expectations of an entire industry and people who are most likely Southwest employees flood an airline forum gushing about how great it is. Wonder why that is?

Service is not just what you get in the cabin, although that is a big part of it. It is also on time performance, your bags arriving with you, frequency of schedules. You just don't have a good argument about bad service with Southwest.
 
iflyswa
Posts: 98
Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2006 3:09 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 2:25 pm



Quoting Cjpark (Reply 80):
Southwest employees flood an airline forum gushing about how great it is. Wonder why that is?

Actually, I'm not an Employee.

Quoting Floorrunner (Reply 84):
Service is not just what you get in the cabin, although that is a big part of it. It is also on time performance, your bags arriving with you, frequency of schedules. You just don't have a good argument about bad service with Southwest.

DING!  checkmark 

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 82):
IIRC, wasn't WN planning on eliminating SFO not too long ago; especially since they do serve nearby OAK?

Hardly. Southwest just returned to SFO in August after being absent from the market since 2001. Despite congestion issues, SFO offered to Southwest a much more attractive user fee structure than the agreement in place before 2001. Southwest has made no plans to cut out or dramatically reduce OAK service.

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 82):
Not sure about the reasoning behind picking DEN over COS other than to frustrate F9

How about it having to do with Denver's center of population being closer to DEN than COS? With Gasoline being as high as it now is, fewer people are willing to drive 80+ miles out of the way to save a few bucks everytime they catch a flight. The vast majority of Southwest's Denver Customer base resides closer to DEN than to COS, on average, so offering a low-cost service from DEN provides the Customer with both price- and convenience utility.
Opinions expressed by "iflyswa" are not those of Southwest Airlines Officers, Directors, or Employees.
 
SkyyMaster
Posts: 1082
Joined: Sun Feb 11, 2007 7:34 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 3:11 pm



Quoting Floorrunner (Reply 84):
Service is not just what you get in the cabin, although that is a big part of it. It is also on time performance, your bags arriving with you, frequency of schedules. You just don't have a good argument about bad service with Southwest.

Double DING. This person obviously has a beef with Southwest and it shows. As I stated earlier, they didn't get to be #1 in pax by being a crappy airline. Sounds like some people are just jealous of their success.
 
MKENut
Posts: 157
Joined: Tue Jul 24, 2007 7:34 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 3:16 pm

Their is no question that WN has the way and means to merge with FL. IMHO, it can't be a hostile takeover if it is to work out at all. Today, most companies are built up to the point that makes them attractive for a buyout from a larger company. This lines the pockets of investors and CEO's with millions of dollars. It is free enterprise. It doesn't matter what the consumer wants.
 
PHLBOS
Posts: 6520
Joined: Thu Apr 01, 2004 6:38 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 4:30 pm



Quoting Iflyswa (Reply 85):
Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 82):
Not sure about the reasoning behind picking DEN over COS other than to frustrate F9

How about it having to do with Denver's center of population being closer to DEN than COS? With Gasoline being as high as it now is, fewer people are willing to drive 80+ miles out of the way to save a few bucks everytime they catch a flight. The vast majority of Southwest's Denver Customer base resides closer to DEN than to COS, on average, so offering a low-cost service from DEN provides the Customer with both price- and convenience utility.

You forgot to mention the additional travel times that would still exist even if gasoline prices weren't the issue.  wink 

As far as saving a few bucks is concerned; it depends on the cost differential in fares.

REAL WORLD EXAMPLE HERE:
While recently pricing fares to fly from the PHL to the Greater Boston area to attend a Parkinson's Conference/Luncheon in Newton, MA (which is about 10 to 11 miles west of BOS) this Dec. 15; I nearly fell over when the listed r/t, same-day-return PHL-BOS fares was AT LEAST $900!!! (courtesy of US now has more pricing power since FL recently dropped the route).

When I priced PHL-MHT and PHL-PVD (where WN competes w/US on both routes); the r/t, same-day-return fare was a more reasonable $120. BTW, Newton, MA is about 60 miles from MHT and about 53 miles from PVD. I was able to reserve a rental car for about $40. If one adds an additional $30 for gas for the rental car, the total cost of $190 is STILL WAY LOWER than a closer US PHL-BOS r/t flight itinerary.

Long story short; if the price differential is large enough (and the extra travel time is not an issue), a traveler may still opt for the remote airport.
"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981
 
RL757PVD
Posts: 3142
Joined: Fri Dec 03, 1999 2:47 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 4:47 pm



Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 88):
fares was AT LEAST $900!!!



Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 88):
Long story short; if the price differential is large enough (and the extra travel time is not an issue), a traveler may still opt for the remote airport.

And some markets like ATL-PVD/BOS are the complete opposite. form ATL ive bought ONE ticket into PVD in the last 3 years because of the absolutely rediculous difference that DL charges $150-300 for BOS vs $600-$1,000 for PVD. This is a route a flew a good 6-10 times per year when back in college in florida. but ATL has a totally different pricing structure.

I think even the most seasoned travelers know now that the days of the ultra cheap fares are gone for the most part, but the $500+ differential for airports within an hour of eachother? come on....

My guess is they probably loose more than they keep. Based on personal business travel experience, we have often used other airports to save thousands over the past few years. LIT and CHS (pre airtran) were always $1000 for business type itineraries. We probably saved over $10,000 by using MEM and SAV, or by sending less people as a result, when had they fare been something more reasonable say in the $400-600 range (mind you its a 1 hour flight!) they would have actually made more revenue.
Experience is what you get when what you thought would work out didn't!
 
PHLBOS
Posts: 6520
Joined: Thu Apr 01, 2004 6:38 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 5:02 pm



Quoting RL757PVD (Reply 89):
And some markets like ATL-PVD/BOS are the complete opposite.

A similar scenario existed when OH offered its short-lived ILG-ATL service; the PHL-ATL & BWI-ATL fares (courtesy of FL's presence at both airports) were significantly lower.

Quoting RL757PVD (Reply 89):
I think even the most seasoned travelers know now that the days of the ultra cheap fares are gone for the most part, but the $500+ differential for airports within an hour of eachother? come on....

HEAR, HEAR! Spot on.  checkmark 
"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981
 
atrude777
Posts: 4352
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2003 11:23 pm

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 7:15 pm



Quoting Cjpark (Reply 80):
Southwest Airlines lowered the service expectations of an entire industry and people who are most likely Southwest employees flood an airline forum gushing about how great it is. Wonder why that is?

When I did work for them, it was because we felt good about it, the airline supported us in everything, did not take paycuts and was rewarded with so many things, plus we also speak the truth, is that so hard to accept that an airline actually DOES treat their people right?

Quoting Cjpark (Reply 80):
Face it folks Southwest has the same problems as any other airline except that it has more cheerleaders than any other airline to obfuscate the situation. Your customers experience it daily.

Problems as high fuel rise, and such, yes correct and we don't deny that. Kelly is very outspoken about that. But what problems are you insisting the customers experience every day?

Quoting Cjpark (Reply 80):
Hopefully Southwest will not be able to buy any other carriers. We need competition not consolidation.

So then I understand you were against the AWA/US merger and would be against a UA/DL merger or DL/NW merger too then correct? After all "we need competition, not consolidation" which I DO agree with, and believe it or not, southwest DOES SUPPORT competition. Its healthy for all airlines to have it, and the customer always wins.

Alex
Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
 
iflyswa
Posts: 98
Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2006 3:09 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 9:35 pm



Quoting Atrude777 (Reply 91):
After all "we need competition, not consolidation" which I DO agree with, and believe it or not, southwest DOES SUPPORT competition. Its healthy for all airlines to have it, and the customer always wins.

The best example of this I can come up with being when Herb lobbied congress in the late 1970's in support of industry deregulation. Everyone thought he was crazy (which is probably true), because nobody imagined an intrastate carrier as tiny as Southwest was at the time could survive amid competition in the deregulated market.

When he was criticized, by airlines and congress alike--having been told that it was almost certain that deregulation would kill Southwest Airlines--Herb said "give Southwest the chance to compete freely, and we'll prove you wrong." Herb's always been a smoker and a drinker, I guess he's just a gambler, too...and at least this was one bet that's paid off for Southwest.

Like Atrude777 says: In the end, Customers really are the winners in this high-stakes game (even the ones that don't fly Southwest). Though price competition spurred on by deregulation has lowered fares significantly in markets where regulation had once maintained very high average fares, the "Southwest effect" has had a noticeable effect in pushing average fares downward when one looks at comparatively similar markets in which one is served by Southwest and the other is not.

iflyswa
Opinions expressed by "iflyswa" are not those of Southwest Airlines Officers, Directors, or Employees.
 
sllevin
Posts: 3314
Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2002 1:57 pm

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Tue Nov 13, 2007 11:29 pm

FWIW, I believe Leonard's trade was a 10b-5 automatic program trade that occurred due to a pre-established formula. My guess is that it's related to the 60 day moving average, but that's entirely a guess.

Steve
 
cjpark
Posts: 1225
Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2005 1:46 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Thu Nov 15, 2007 11:45 am



Quoting Floorrunner (Reply 84):
Service is not just what you get in the cabin, although that is a big part of it. It is also on time performance, your bags arriving with you, frequency of schedules. You just don't have a good argument about bad service with Southwest.



Quoting Atrude777 (Reply 91):
Problems as high fuel rise, and such, yes correct and we don't deny that. Kelly is very outspoken about that. But what problems are you insisting the customers experience every day?

Southwest has the same problems as any other airline with; disgruntled employees. delayed or canceled flights, lost baggage, lied to customers etc. etc. etc.

If you have not experienced any of the above with Southwest you are not telling the truth or you have only flown the airline once or twice. Yes there are many of us who fly the airline regularly who are not your greatest fans. Of course from the prattle on A-net you would never know it.

Point is that any airline is only as good as its competition based on the immediate contact with the customer at any given moment. You can’t always joke or sing your way out of telling the customer the truth.

And Alex Southwests history at Love Field proves they avoid competition.
"Any airline that wants to serve the [region] can go to DFW today and fly anywhere they want," WN spokesman Ed Stewart
 
jetdeltamsy
Posts: 2688
Joined: Tue Nov 14, 2000 11:51 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Thu Nov 22, 2007 11:24 pm



Quoting Rdwelch (Reply 71):
Quoting Jetdeltamsy (Reply 14):
Southwest puts on a "folksy" front to customers. On the business side, theirs is an image of ruthlessly competitve behavior and no nonsense, stockholder friendly business decisions.

It's already been addressed, but I have to say it again. It's called running a business. Well.

I agree completely.

It's interesting how they project such a "folksy" image while in reality they are ruthlessly competitive.

But you're right, it's the only way for an airline or any company to survive and thrive.
Tired of airline bankruptcies....EA/PA/TW and finally DL.
 
LV
Posts: 1546
Joined: Mon Jun 04, 2001 6:02 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Fri Nov 23, 2007 12:15 am



Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 8):
I highly doubt Southwest wants to make highly delayed ATL a focus city the way Southwest hypes their quick turnarounds.

They didn't seem to have a problem with going into highly delayed PHL
 
atrude777
Posts: 4352
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2003 11:23 pm

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Fri Nov 23, 2007 12:57 am



Quoting Cjpark (Reply 94):
Southwest has the same problems as any other airline with; disgruntled employees. delayed or canceled flights, lost baggage, lied to customers etc. etc. etc.

Yes, of course. Never made the claim WN was perfect, nor did I...

Quoting Cjpark (Reply 94):
If you have not experienced any of the above with Southwest you are not telling the truth or you have only flown the airline once or twice. Yes there are many of us who fly the airline regularly who are not your greatest fans. Of course from the prattle on A-net you would never know it.

Well, I worked for SWA for 5 months, so i WAS the employee sometimes, they didn't like.

But I flew on them and still do, passenger wise, for nearly 6 years. It was VERY rare for me to run across a disgruntled employee. I HAVE seen cancelled flights on WN and have had cancelled flights on WN, as well as delayed. Yes WN also has lost luggage like other airlines to.

But the point I was trying to make and most seem to, while yes, WN is not imperfect, WN does it the least, they have the least amount of delayed flights, as well as the least amount of canceled flights, and disgruntled employees also.

Quoting Cjpark (Reply 94):
Point is that any airline is only as good as its competition based on the immediate contact with the customer at any given moment. You can't always joke or sing your way out of telling the customer the truth.

When I was CSA, I never, sang or joked my way out of the truth, i just TOLD the truth as it was. I don't like being lied to so I never lied to the passenger either.

Quoting Cjpark (Reply 94):
And Alex Southwests history at Love Field proves they avoid competition.

I am not going to get into the wright amendment debate here, we already have done this time and time again.

I will echo the same thoughts, and you will echo your's its not going to change.

Alex
Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
 
SkyexRamper
Posts: 1952
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 12:17 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Fri Nov 23, 2007 1:34 am



Quoting SCCutler (Reply 99):
For those of us who actually are business travelers, Southwest's frequency, service, unmatched standards, fares and unmatched customer service are all sound reasons for flying with them.

Southwest is only doing what is was created to do from day 1. I really wish more airline CEOs would have learned a few things.
Good Luck to all Skyway Pilots! It's been great working with you!
 
SkyexRamper
Posts: 1952
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 12:17 am

RE: Rumor: Southwest To Buy Airtran?

Fri Nov 23, 2007 3:56 am

Everyone might as well be screaming that Southwest and Ryanair are merging to create the world's largest LCC. Southwest doesn't have a need to buy another airline that operates on a normal hub-spoke system, not to mention all those 717s.
Good Luck to all Skyway Pilots! It's been great working with you!

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