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illinoisman
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WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:12 pm

http://www.jsonline.com/business/can...ck-again-b9953137z1-215689861.html

"Airport officials say Mitchell International doesn't get the credit it deserves when it comes to nonstop service.

"We're very aware from talking with our friends and business associates that there's still a lack of awareness about the need to go through southwest.com to book on what is now Milwaukee's largest airline," said Pat Rowe, marketing manager at Mitchell International.

Rowe said airport employees have all encountered someone who mentioned a lack of a nonstop flight to a destination where nonstop service was available."


The article goes on to mention that when it comes to WN and business travelers, "They really want to be stronger. This is a challenge for them." Well, of course persuading business travelers to fly WN will be a "challenge" because business travelers don't want to fly in a cattle car environment with no reserved seats at booking, much less no business class. WN appeals to younger fliers and those who are willing to endure flying with the unwashed masses to save a few bucks. I'm sure ORD's close proximity to MKE also hampers WN's operations there. A lot of my friends/family from Wisconsin almost never fly out of MKE these days because it's nearly always cheaper and faster to drive or take the bus down to one of the Chicago airports and fly out of there, rather than MKE. Once you figure in a layover, you nearly always arrive at your destination sooner (and cheaper) by flying out of Chicago than MKE. Don't even get me started on international flights...
 
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LAXintl
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:23 pm

Quoting illinoisman (Thread starter):
Well, of course persuading business travelers to fly WN will be a "challenge" because business travelers don't want to fly in a cattle car environment with no reserved seats at booking, much less no business class.

Your impression of Southwest is rather dated.

Come out here to California and Southwest is very much the businessmen's airline.

They managed to grow into the largest carrier in the state and you'll see plenty of dressed up business types using carrier up and down the California corridor.

SWA is very active in the corporate travel world, and if you follow their financials earnings reports you'll hear comments about the very strong corporate and business traveler response to their relaunched Rapid Rewards program.
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SPREE34
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:26 pm

They miss the warm cookies.

BTW, where's that airline that used to fly non-stop to so many destinations from MKE. Just saying.
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KELPkid
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:30 pm

What is the draw? WN already has excellent service out of MDW...the only people I could see that would be attracted to MKE over MDW are people who live in the far north 'burbs of Chicagoland or Wisconsin. Even if you live there, MDW is practically a hub for WN operations, so if you brave the Chicago traffic, you get many more nonstops...
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:33 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 1):
Come out here to California and Southwest is very much the businessmen's airline.

   Quite a few self employed and small businesses favor WN...

Quoting SPREE34 (Reply 2):
They miss the warm cookies.

BTW, where's that airline that used to fly non-stop to so many destinations from MKE. Just saying.

That's ok. But accept reality and move forward. If the current airlines are not well supported, there will be no additional service.

Quoting KELPkid (Reply 3):
so if you brave the Chicago traffic, you get many more nonstops...

And far more frequency... which will limit growth at MKE.


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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:24 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 1):
Your impression of Southwest is rather dated.

Come out here to California and Southwest is very much the businessmen's airline.

Absolutely true Southwest gets alot of business people purely on frequency. Or look at a city like Baltimore, Phoenix, Las Vegas, St Louis, there are alot of business people who use Southwest as there go to airline too. Its such old thinking that Southwest cant compete for business travelers in most markets.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:29 pm

Quoting illinoisman (Thread starter):
The article goes on to mention that when it comes to WN and business travelers, "They really want to be stronger. This is a challenge for them." Well, of course persuading business travelers to fly WN will be a "challenge" because business travelers don't want to fly in a cattle car environment with no reserved seats at booking, much less no business class.

Obviously, you don't fly WN nor have you be in an airport that WN serves beside MCO or LAS...
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jreuschl
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:48 pm

OP commented on the thread on JSOnline, too. As usual, when a WN article appears on there, people comment who are used to the old 2 across seating of YX and bash WN. A lady even went so far as to call WN users "unwashed masses."

Another commenter wants the option to buy business or first class. Fine, fly Delta, they have a club in MKE for you.

I guess I need to shower?  
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:59 pm

WN serves MKE just fine, as do all the other carriers there. If there was demand for more flights and the revenues were there airlinea would be flying them. MKE was just over served 2005-2010. Internation flights? What a joke, you have megahub ORD in your backyard, suck it up and brave the traffic or ride the bus etc.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:08 pm

Quoting illinoisman (Thread starter):
Well, of course persuading business travelers to fly WN will be a "challenge" because business travelers don't want to fly in a cattle car environment with no reserved seats at booking, much less no business class.

So you really believe that WN is a high frequency middle load factor airline because mon and pop need multiple flights per day to go visit their grandchildren? One can also consider that WN's walk up fare is the lowest of all the so called business carriers that have business class and reserved seating.
Maybe those "business travellers" who use WN don't mention it because they want to keep it to themselves  
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 10:54 pm

Quoting jreuschl (Reply 7):
As usual, when a WN article appears on there, people comment who are used to the old 2 across seating of YX and bash WN. A lady even went so far as to call WN users "unwashed masses."

Well, YX was great, but since then I've kind of taken a liking to WN. Its reasonably priced and sometimes the deals are great. For example I flew non-stop to/from PHX a couple of times over the past year for like $125 each way. For business travelers I think it similarly comes down to non-stop flights and frequency.
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Tue Jul 16, 2013 11:43 pm

Quoting illinoisman (Thread starter):
Once you figure in a layover, you nearly always arrive at your destination sooner (and cheaper) by flying out of Chicago than MKE. Don't even get me started on international flights...

For a metro area of the size, MKE actually has a pretty good range of non-stop destinations and frequency. A look at the options out of Providence or Norfolk should wipe away the 'unfairly unloved' attitude. The idea of international flights, especially intercontinental flights, with the country's 2nd-largest airport and its 190+ non-stop destinations a 90-minute drive away, is utter fantasy.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 1:24 am

FL operated a scissor hub like flow using MKE between BOS, LGA, DCALAX, SFO, SEA.

As some of these routes have converted to WN metal, does WN still operate connections from the east to west, vice versa, using MKE? When FL operated at MKE, I remember FL via MKE being often the cheapest way to cross the country.

It's also interesting that MKE isn't connected to some of the WN hubs/focuses, whatever WN calls them, like HOU and BNA, even within the same time zone as MKE. I assume just to dampen B6 prospects and B6 from copying FL's former routes that WN will want to continue to fly routes like BOS-MKE unless the yields are poor. By itself, I'm not sure it really cares about the MKE-west coast. The nonstop WN route like MKE-SFO isn't even timed well for business travelers and probably UA could fly MKE-SFO and AS on MKE-SEA which operate hubs from the larger market of the city pair.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 2:19 am

Here are WN loads out of MKE, per the DOT. Of course yields help make or break it.

3/2012 86%
4/2012 79%
5/2012 77%
6/2012 84%
7/2012 87%
8/2012 83%
9/2012 69%
10/2012 78%
11/2012 73%
12/2012 71%
1/2013 69%
2/2013 71%
3/2013 82%

http://www.transtats.bts.gov/Data_Elements.aspx

Quoting Flytravel (Reply 12):
As some of these routes have converted to WN metal, does WN still operate connections from the east to west, vice versa, using MKE? When FL operated at MKE, I remember FL via MKE being often the cheapest way to cross the country

Yes. LGA, BOS, and DCA carry quite a bit of connecting traffic.

Quoting Flytravel (Reply 12):
It's also interesting that MKE isn't connected to some of the WN hubs/focuses, whatever WN calls them, like HOU and BNA

  

Quoting illinoisman (Thread starter):
challenge" because business travelers don't want to fly in a cattle car environment with no reserved seats at booking,

I've flown WN several times over the years, along with DL and UA. My personal opinion is I'd almost rather have open seating. When purchasing a last minute ticket, if you check in online fairly early you can usually get an early enough boarding pass to pick a window or aisle seat. If I book last minute with DL or UA and the flight is fairly full, chances are I'm ending up with a middle seat. If I get on board close to last on WN, I can also usually avoid sitting next to a larger person as I can pick any of the seat(s) that are left.

Quoting illinoisman (Thread starter):
much less no business class.

Understandable. Flying is a totally different experience in Business or First compared to coach.

[Edited 2013-07-16 19:23:58]
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 3:56 am

Quoting jreuschl (Reply 7):
Another commenter wants the option to buy business or first class. Fine, fly Delta, they have a club in MKE for you.

   For those complaining about the deterioration in air travel, just pony up an inflation adjusted amount similar to what one paid for coach under regulation and the experience is far better.

Quoting iowaman (Reply 13):
If I book last minute with DL or UA and the flight is fairly full, chances are I'm ending up with a middle seat.

   Or on AA you have to pay for anything but a middle seat and the employer will not reimburse that fee... How many business flights would you pay for that upgrade out of your own pocket?

But I like assigned seating when a plane boards both at the front and back...

Quoting iowaman (Reply 13):
Flying is a totally different experience in Business or First compared to coach.

Agreed. Bummer my employer won't pay for it.  

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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 4:10 am

Quoting illinoisman (Thread starter):
Well, of course persuading business travelers to fly WN will be a "challenge" because business travelers don't want to fly in a cattle car environment with no reserved seats at booking, much less no business class. WN appeals to younger fliers and those who are willing to endure flying with the unwashed masses to save a few bucks.

Ignorance, meet thy match!

Southwest's very existence was founded on business travelers, and for true "road warrior" business travelers, there can be nothing better than the certainty and reliability of travel that Southwest affords its passengers.

Never chiseling its pax, the ability to secure a decent seat on short notice, at a fare that can be tolerated, the ability to change flights without forfeiting fare value or paying change fees, sufficient frequencies to accommodate changing business schedules; these and many other realities are why Southwest is the preferred business travel airline for those who absolutely, positively must fly.

"Cattle car" - what a joke. Southwest is the only carrier whose boarding process allows one to remain seated until, literally, seconds prior to time to board. As for "reserved seats at booking," for short-lead business travelers (and business travel quite frequently does not allow the luxury of booking weeks in advance), that means the choice of eight or ten middle seats, the one adjacent to the lav and the seats between the engines on the MD80. At least on WN you have a shot at a decent seat (actually, with timely check in, a decent seat is a certainty).

Or maybe you're gonna tell us about the meal service?
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 5:07 am

It's unusual for me to play Southwest fanboy as the whole evolution of MKE and domestic aviation in general has been very far from my druthers, but your remarks on WN are so ridiculously out of touch with present reality its not even funny.
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m11stephen
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 6:33 am

There is a significant difference between the brand and "atmosphere" of WN compared to AA, DL, UA and even the LCCs.

The boarding process is a joke. I don't care how efficient it is... One can't shake the feeling of being at Wal-Mart the second the doors open on black friday when boarding a Southwest flight. The ground and cabin crews generally dress as if they are working a shift stocking shelves at Wal-Mart... Some of the F/As sure seem to think they are at a child's birthday party with the way they sing, dance and even do games with the pax. Some people like it but the majority find it to be downright annoying. Not being able to select a seat beforehand also adds to the cattle car experience.

Flying Southwest doesn't even feel like flying... It feels like you've boarded a six across Greyhound bus with wings. Keep in mind that business travelers in MKE were accustomed to Midwest. Yes Midwest is long gone and isn't coming back but that is what business travelers in MKE were accustomed to. They prefer an airline like Delta which offers assigned seating and first/business class, not an airline like Southwest. I've met plenty of people who have said that they would, and have, rather connect two times on Delta than fly non-stop on Southwest.

You can try and deny it all you want, Southwest is different from other airlines and not in a good way.
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 8:31 am

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):

Flying Southwest doesn't even feel like flying... It feels like you've boarded a six across Greyhound bus with wings. Keep in mind that business travelers in MKE were accustomed to Midwest. Yes Midwest is long gone and isn't coming back but that is what business travelers in MKE were accustomed to. They prefer an airline like Delta which offers assigned seating and first/business class, not an airline like Southwest. I've met plenty of people who have said that they would, and have, rather connect two times on Delta than fly non-stop on Southwest.

Thank you my friend for explaining what so many others don't understand about the MKE market. It's why Airtran gained market share while Frontier lost market share. It's why DL keeps holding on to their travelers in the MKE area and it's ultimately why WN will shrink in MKE. For better or worse, it exactly this attitude that will dictate what markets are served non-stop out of Milwaukee in the future - not those passengers looking for the cheapest fares to MCO or the retirement belts.

I'm not saying it's going to happen, but if either UA/DL/AA chose to compete with WN on some of their non-stop flights out of MKE WN would likely be the one retreating within a year.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 11:52 am

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
One can't shake the feeling of being at Wal-Mart the second the doors open on black friday when boarding a Southwest flight. The ground and cabin crews generally dress as if they are working a shift stocking shelves at Wal-Mart...

What, exactly, feels like Black Friday about WN boarding? It's certainly not the gate lice, who are far worse on those carriers that offer assigned seats.

If you don't like WN for the singing flight attendants or the lack of IFE or the lack of F or whatever, that's fine. But to pretend that the boarding experience on the legacies is somehow "better" than WN is silly.
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 11:59 am

Quoting usflyguy (Reply 6):
Obviously, you don't fly WN nor have you be in an airport that WN serves beside MCO or LAS...

   I think of all the times I've flown WN, maybe one or two were for leisure, and all the rest I was with the many people flying for business. It's been that way since the early 90s at least. Heck, the airline was founded on that.

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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 12:13 pm

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
You can try and deny it all you want, Southwest is different from other airlines and not in a good way.

Southwest is different. They pay their employees well and don't have to rely on bankruptcy filings to survive.

The real funny thing that totally proves you wrong is actual customer satisfaction surveys always rank WN near the top, while UA/AA/DL are much lower.

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
The boarding process is a joke.

Apparently, you've never seen the boarding process at AA/UA/DL where 50-100 "elite" flyers all line-up well in advance of boarding trying to be the first on the plane. It's hilarious to watch grown business men, push and shove to get into their cattle shute.

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
Yes Midwest is long gone and isn't coming back but that is what business travelers in MKE were accustomed to.

If business travelers preferred an airline like Midwest, then Midwest would still be in business. And they would have paid the premium to keep Midwest in business, but in reality they weren't willing to pay a premium for Midwest.

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
They prefer an airline like Delta which offers assigned seating and first/business class, not an airline like Southwest.

And has DL grown at MKE? No. Added any new destinations from MKE? No.

In fact, despite MKE being so "strong" for DL, DL still doesn't fly from MKE to it's hubs at LAX or SLC. They can't make MKE-JFK work year round either. Plus, with cutbacks on MKE-MEM and MKE-CVG, DL's presence at MKE continues to shrink.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 12:40 pm

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):

"they sing, dance and even do games with the pax. Some people like it but the majority find it to be downright annoying."

Most people like it, otherwise they wouldn't be allowed to do it.


"It feels like you've boarded a six across Greyhound bus with wings."


Oh, you mean any domestic narrowbody airliner in America that isn't a regional jet? Gotcha!  

" They prefer an airline like Delta which offers assigned seating and first/business class, not an airline like Southwest. I've met plenty of people who have said that they would, and have, rather connect two times on Delta than fly non-stop on Southwest"

It is America, they are more than welcome to do so. We can also look at it like this:

They fly through ATL on a one stop, flight gets delayed, they are late in arriving at their destination, resulting in larger consequenses than flying WN and dealing with being able to choose their own seat.

Look, everybody is entitled to their opinion, and are welcome to share them on this site, but make sure they are built on sound factors. I respect yours and I respect those of everybody else. WN is definitely different from the legacies, whether it is better or worse is up to the individual, but they are certainly better than some airlines in America. I'd love to hear what half of these people who are complaining about WN would say if they had to fly NK! ;D

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 21):

"If business travelers preferred an airline like Midwest, then Midwest would still be in business. And they would have paid the premium to keep Midwest in business, but in reality they weren't willing to pay a premium for Midwest."

THANK YOU! Please explain this to those business travelers that complain all the time!

"And has DL grown at MKE? No. Added any new destinations from MKE? No.

In fact, despite MKE being so "strong" for DL, DL still doesn't fly from MKE to it's hubs at LAX or SLC. They can't make MKE-JFK work year round either. Plus, with cutbacks on MKE-MEM and MKE-CVG, DL's presence at MKE continues to shrink."

But, in all fairness, MKE is getting a 753 on an RON turn from MSP soon, right? That must mean they are kicking WN's butt!  
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 1:51 pm

Quoting iowaman (Reply 13):
Yes. LGA, BOS, and DCA carry quite a bit of connecting traffic.

Slightly off topic, WN's DCA-HOU begins August 4th, and UA fares on DCA-IAH have already begun to tumble. I actually got a DCA-IAH fare on August 10th for $142 (G class).

I'm guessing UA is going to send yields down the drain rather than allow WN to steal the store.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 2:25 pm

Quoting illinoisman (Thread starter):
A lot of my friends/family from Wisconsin almost never fly out of MKE these days because it's nearly always cheaper and faster

Cheaper, typically, but not faster...certainly depends on where you live. MKE is far more convenient for nearly everyone, including on down to Racine, Kenosha and even Lake County.

MKE became overrun with low cost traffic--with a level of traffic that was unsustainable for a market of its size. I think WN is seeing that now, since the overheating has cooled off.

Quoting SPREE34 (Reply 2):
They miss the warm cookies.

Ain't that the truth. RIP Midwest.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 2:40 pm

The anti-WN comments amuse me, because they are so off base with reality it's not even funny. The airline has changed in recent years, sure, but it still does the basics better than most airlines out there. The airline runs a reliable and consistent operation. Also, let's be honest...if you fly a legacy carrier, chances are pretty high that on some segment you'll be on a sardine can RJ. At least WN is still all mainline. Or does that not count for something anymore? You get free checked bags, free snacks, no change fees, a great chance at a great seat as long as you know how the system works (and it's not brain surgery), plus a bunch of nonstop flights. How is that a bad thing? Business passengers love Southwest, and they will continue to flock to the airline as long as it's in business.
 
thekennady
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 3:06 pm

Sadly, I don't believe MKE will ever be a Hub again. Its a mid sized market that does not warrant a ton of service. Also MKE is Sandwiched in between MSP ,ORD/MDW, DTW, and more as you go further east and west. The only thing I could see is maybe DL increasing flights and maybe UA returning with mainline to ORD or DEN. WN will hold their own and i could see a few markets added. I myself do not like WN, but ill admit its not a bad as some people think. Its amazing how things Change, 5-6 years Ago WN did not even serve MKE, and now its the dominant carrier.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 3:25 pm

Being a 140K DL business traveler, it is easy to see why WN may be struggling. And it has nothing to do with what the airline offers. Both offer very good service. I chose DL a long time ago like many businesses in MKe including Harley,
GE, Rockwell and othes. The relationships date as far back as Northwest and North Central. I stick with them because at my level, I do sit up front, it is reliable, there is a club at the airport, and the hubs are situated such that I can work myself around most weather delays. Just last Friday I was headed to Tampa through Atlanta. ATL was backed up and running very late because of storms, I was quickly and effortlessly routed through DTW and ended up in TPA 10 minutes early.

The business travlers I know are very loyal and a lot of them are loyal to Delta because year in, and year out, Delta (Northwest/NorthCentral/Republic) has taken care of us.

But, it is not necessarlily an us vs them situation. Southwest is a fine airline too. I fly them when I need to and other than not having FC service find them to be very good at what they do and very dependable in their flight operations.

Quoting par13del (Reply 9):
So you really believe that WN is a high frequency middle load factor airline because mon and pop need multiple flights per day to go visit their grandchildren? One can also consider that WN's walk up fare is the lowest of all the so called business carriers that have business class and reserved seating.
Maybe those "business travellers" who use WN don't mention it because they want to keep it to themselves

The places I go, I have found that Delta most always beats WN on close in fares. On day of fares--which I only have to use rarely--it is a tossup.

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
The boarding process is a joke. I don't care how efficient it is... One can't shake the feeling of being at Wal-Mart the second the doors open on black friday when boarding a Southwest flight.

Hyperbole and untrue. It is very organized and everyone lines up in a specific place. It is a lot more civilized than the Kettles in zones 2 and 3 pushing their way to the front of the quey at Delta just to make sure they can get their oversized rollaboard on the flight. Almost feels like a WWE cage match.

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 19):
What, exactly, feels like Black Friday about WN boarding? It's certainly not the gate lice, who are far worse on those carriers that offer assigned seats.

   Reality is hard for some to understand.

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 21):
In fact, despite MKE being so "strong" for DL, DL still doesn't fly from MKE to it's hubs at LAX or SLC. They can't make MKE-JFK work year round either. Plus, with cutbacks on MKE-MEM and MKE-CVG, DL's presence at MKE continues to shrink.

Delta doesn't fly to those hubs because there is no reason to do so. Most cities people want to fly to from MKE can do so via MSP. Yes, MEM has been downgraded and is actually going away in the fall. But, the number of seats to ATL have increased substantially while unprofitable hubs have contracted. Before the merger there was usually only one mainline flight a day to ATL with the remainder on CRJ and ERJ aircraft. Now their are seven --all mainline--flights per day on MD90 and 88 equipment with an occasional airbus or 737/8 thrown in. Service to MSP and DTW has been relatively stable with the size of the aircraft being adjusted to demand. SLC never worked for DL in MKE, even before the merger.

Delta is not so much shrinking, but adjusting for the merger.

Again, speaking only for myself, Delta is the best businessman airline at Mitchell and that is not a hit against WN. YMMV.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 3:42 pm

Unwashed masses? Who uses that language? It's condescending, snobbery though I do agree that the LAS terminal is a madhouse and could use some serious cleaning.

Honestly, it's so simple, don't like WN (or F9 in the case of the OP), don't fly it. There are other options.

IMO Coach in WN compares favorably with couch on the other airlines.

As for MKE, it's long past time to stop the crying for the "good ole days." MKE couldn't or wouldn't support their hub and their hometown airline. To paraphrase the economist Herbert Stein: "What can't go on forever, won't."

If one wants more, pay more. If one wants more, but won't pay for it, that's being a parasitical.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 3:44 pm

Quoting TVNWZ (Reply 27):
Delta doesn't fly to those hubs because there is no reason to do so.

But then why does DL serve SLC from other cities?

DL flies MSN-SLC (and MSN is much smaller than MKE).
DL flies IND-SLC.

I'm not knocking DL, but their service at MKE is not that impressive. In another year or two, I suspect all DL service at MKE will be just DTW, MSP, ATL and LGA.
 
Cubsrule
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 3:48 pm

Quoting TVNWZ (Reply 27):
The places I go, I have found that Delta most always beats WN on close in fares. On day of fares--which I only have to use rarely--it is a tossup.

To be fair, though, you have to credit WN for that.

I can get a refundable ticket to any destination in the network for less than DL wants for a refundable ticket on BNA-CRW.
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 4:08 pm

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 29):
I'm not knocking DL, but their service at MKE is not that impressive. In another year or two, I suspect all DL service at MKE will be just DTW, MSP, ATL and LGA.

Well, it may not be impressive for you, but it is for others. And you are probably right about the four hubs you mention. But, not because of anything MKE flyers are doing. MEM is gone as a hub and CVG is probably not that far behind. SLC just has never worked. Why fly somewhere few people want to go to or connect at? It's not the airline, its the flyer.

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 30):
To be fair, though, you have to credit WN for that

Yes and no. I credit WN for keeping it that way. In my world Delta has always been competitive. The compeititve dynamics have shifted over the years. and now WN is helping drive lower cost. In my opinion airTran drove the prices lower than Southwest is driving them. But, that is probably why FL ended up in the prediciment it did.
 
crAAzy
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 4:10 pm

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 21):
And has DL grown at MKE? No. Added any new destinations from MKE? No.

In fact, despite MKE being so "strong" for DL, DL still doesn't fly from MKE to it's hubs at LAX or SLC. They can't make MKE-JFK work year round either. Plus, with cutbacks on MKE-MEM and MKE-CVG, DL's presence at MKE continues to shrink.

First, I don't recall anyone saying that MKE was "strong' for DL. He said that in his experience and circles, many business travelers prefer DL in MKE for various reasons. Whether they be based on experience or a deserved/undeserved reputation. Additionally, it's a well know fact that WN is no longer the cheapest game in town for a lot of places. As we know, price drives many people's decisions and if another airline can do it cheaper then that's who the people will fly.

Ummm ... yes, Delta just added NYC (JFK and LGA) last year as part of their NYC domestic expansion plan ... but true they did drop the JFK flight down seasonally because they couldn't sustain 5 daily flights to NYC year round.

Then you can say that for the dozens of other cities that DL cut from MEM and CVG over the last few years. It's called consolidation and it's happening with everyone - including UA/CO and yes FL/WN in MKE and at nearly 100 airports across the country. If you want to know if DL is growing or not at MKE you'd be better served by providing passenger numbers, daily flights numbers, and equipment types over the few years (Information I don't claim to have or really care about). Don't spew out generalized well know information about flights to nominal cities where DL has been dismantling hubs.

Finally, I'll say that I'm no WN hater and I'm actually am very happy they have tried to make a go of it in MKE. However, I'm not a huge fan. People are quick to defend the boarding process as not being a "cattle call" but realistically, if you are a frequent flyer then you know it doesn't matter which airline you choose or how "elite" you are because it is what you make of it. Some days I just want to get on the plane and start to relax while other days I'm happy to just casually walk up to the BP reader and watch everyone else jockey for position - especially those in F since you know they're going to have an overhead bin and I don't think there's much of a chance the plane is going to leave without them when the boarding process just started. I will however say that here's not much you can do to defend the "toilet paper roll game" or other things WN's cabin crew may do as fun or games. Some people like it, some people tolerate it, some people don't. Some people don't always want to pass a roll of toilet paper over their head without breaking the line or be put in a position where dozens of others are disapprovingly watching them politely decline participating in such games as one of my friends pointed out when she was taking a last minute flight to go bury her father.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 4:18 pm

Quoting crAAzy (Reply 32):

Well said and put.
 
Cubsrule
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 4:22 pm

Quoting TVNWZ (Reply 31):
In my world Delta has always been competitive. The compeititve dynamics have shifted over the years. and now WN is helping drive lower cost.

I wonder whether DL has maintained some of NW's price strategy in MKE. NW always tried to compete with YX on price, with marginal results.

Quoting crAAzy (Reply 32):
I will however say that here's not much you can do to defend the "toilet paper roll game" or other things WN's cabin crew may do as fun or games.

I fly WN a ton and have never seen such a thing. Heck, singing flight attendants are pretty rare nowadays. I've actually seen this kind of nonsense more commonly on other carriers than on WN.
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TVNWZ
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 4:37 pm

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 34):
I wonder whether DL has maintained some of NW's price strategy in MKE. NW always tried to compete with YX on price, with marginal results.

Could be. Delta seems to price just around whomever is driving the lowest price. DL can be 5 to 20 dollars higher or lower than WN at any given moment on routes WN is targeting to up loads or to sell at a lower rate. It appears at other times DL is driven by other airline discounts that flow through the hub connections. AA may be running a special ORD-TPA and DL will have a lower MKE-ATL-TPA price because of it. Makes my head hurt trying to figure it all out.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 4:44 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 1):
Your impression of Southwest is rather dated.

   The same can be said of Southwest here in DEN, where a lot of business travelers use the airline.

Quoting jreuschl (Reply 7):
I guess I need to shower?

Haha me too.

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
There is a significant difference between the brand and "atmosphere" of WN compared to AA, DL, UA and even the LCCs.

No there isn't.

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
One can't shake the feeling of being at Wal-Mart the second the doors open on black friday when boarding a Southwest flight.

When was the last time you flew Southwest? The boarding process has always been far more orderly at WN than at any legacy I've flown. People line up, and board when they're number is called. I don't see a mad dash for the door.

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
The ground and cabin crews generally dress as if they are working a shift stocking shelves at Wal-Mart

No they don't. You realize there are uniforms besides the polo shirt/khakis or shorts combo and that many crews where them right? Besides, even when wearing the polo/shorts or polo/khakis, I've never come across a WN employee who looked like a slob. They were all professionally dressed, even if that dress is more casual than at some other airlines.

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
Some of the F/As sure seem to think they are at a child's birthday party with the way they sing, dance and even do games with the pax.

You really don't see this much, if ever, on WN flights anymore.

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
Flying Southwest doesn't even feel like flying... It feels like you've boarded a six across Greyhound bus with wings.

I'm actually somewhat surprised that it took 17 replies for someone to bring up Greyhound. How is WN's 6 abreast economy on it's 737's any different from the economy class on any other domestic U.S. carrier operating narrowbodies?

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
I've met plenty of people who have said that they would, and have, rather connect two times on Delta than fly non-stop on Southwest.

Those people are fools, but at least they make Southwest's flights a bit less crowded.

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 17):
You can try and deny it all you want, Southwest is different from other airlines and not in a good way

No it's not, and you've provided no evidence that it is.

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 21):
Apparently, you've never seen the boarding process at AA/UA/DL where 50-100 "elite" flyers all line-up well in advance of boarding trying to be the first on the plane. It's hilarious to watch grown business men, push and shove to get into their cattle shute.

  

Quoting MSYtristar (Reply 25):
The anti-WN comments amuse me, because they are so off base with reality it's not even funny.

Indeed. I dare say that the people making them either do not fly WN, or have not flown the airline in a very long time.

Quoting MSYtristar (Reply 25):
At least WN is still all mainline.

  

Quoting MSYtristar (Reply 25):
You get free checked bags, free snacks, no change fees, a great chance at a great seat as long as you know how the system works (and it's not brain surgery), plus a bunch of nonstop flights.

The lack of change fees is huge for me, as is the free checked bags. Whenever I know I'll have to check a bag and fares are equal, WN wins hands down.

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 19):
to pretend that the boarding experience on the legacies is somehow "better" than WN is silly.

  

Quoting planeadmirer (Reply 28):
Unwashed masses? Who uses that language? It's condescending, snobbery

Indeed it is. The notion that those of us flying WN are "dirty" or "poor white trash" is offensive.

Quoting planeadmirer (Reply 28):
IMO Coach in WN compares favorably with couch on the other airlines.

It does, and until the introduction of the new evolve interior, pitch on WN was actually better than on most other domestic carriers.

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 34):
I fly WN a ton and have never seen such a thing. Heck, singing flight attendants are pretty rare nowadays. I've actually seen this kind of nonsense more commonly on other carriers than on WN.

Yeah me either. The days of the joking WN flight attendant seem to be a thing of the past.
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 4:55 pm

Quoting TVNWZ (Reply 27):
SLC never worked for DL in MKE, even before the merger.

Delta did fly this route but it was horribly timed between hub banks. To connect to most unique SLC cities there was very long connections. Only the common cities had normal connection times and they can be routed thru MSP.

Delta has a limited number of mainline/large RJ gates and it tried a few cities timed in these off times and they proved not worth it. Its too long for a CRJ-200 which Delta has tons of gates. When the new terminals are built this is one route i expect to come back. MKE does seem like a city that should have a SLC flight though if Delta wants to be a player in that market.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 5:01 pm

Quoting crAAzy (Reply 32):
Additionally, it's a well know fact that WN is no longer the cheapest game in town for a lot of places.

It's kind of funny you complain about generalizations, but then make this generalization and call it a "well known fact."

Quoting crAAzy (Reply 32):
Then you can say that for the dozens of other cities that DL cut from MEM and CVG over the last few years. It's called consolidation and it's happening with everyone - including UA/CO and yes FL/WN in MKE and at nearly 100 airports across the country.

But as many cities have lost connections to CVG/MEM, they've gained connections elsewhere. DL has embarked on a large expansion from LAX and added many connections to secondary markets, but strangely not MKE. For some reason, DL can support MSN-SLC, but not MKE-SLC which is odd too.

I'm not saying DL's service at MKE is bad, it's just surprisingly weak relative to many other markets and the large number of FF's DL inherited from NW.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 5:10 pm

Quoting OA412 (Reply 36):
Yeah me either. The days of the joking WN flight attendant seem to be a thing of the past.

Out of probably my last 10 flights or so...I have had maybe 2 that did some sort of jokes. They are definitely more tame than they use to be.

I think that is a good thing. It adds more "charm" if you will and you get a little chuckle when something is said that is a different than the normal line. The last singing FA I had was coming into OKC 3 years ago on a DAL flight. To me, it also depends on where the FA's are based and how long they have been with WN.
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 5:21 pm

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 38):
DL has embarked on a large expansion from LAX and added many connections to secondary markets, but strangely not MKE. For some reason, DL can support MSN-SLC, but not MKE-SLC which is odd too.

Do you know the list of (non-hub) cities east of the Mississippi that have DL service to both SLC and LAX? BNA is one, and DL's competitive position here is much worse than at MKE.
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 5:33 pm

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 38):
I'm not saying DL's service at MKE is bad, it's just surprisingly weak relative to many other markets and the large number of FF's DL inherited from NW.

I'll bite. Which comparable markets would they be? It appears they hit each bank with mostly mainline and large RJ to the three major hubs, larger regional jets to NYC and smaller craft to CVG and MEM. Only things missing are SLC and LAX. And those can be handled out of MSP or DTW. Who has more service in a correspondingly size market?
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:00 pm

Source: USDOT T100

WN/FL Combined MKE Load Factors

MKE 2012 Q1 2013 Q1 YOY Chg (Pts)
SFO 77.78 86.52 8.7
RSW 85.81 85.89 0.1
LAX 71.18 85.88 14.7
PHX 82.91 85.84 2.9
MCO 82.38 85.33 3.0
TPA 75.54 83.44 7.9
LAS 81.72 82.98 1.3
SEA 76.71 74.92 (1.8)
FLL 72.66 72.49 (0.2)
DEN 59.58 72.20 12.6
ATL 64.63 69.60 5.0
MCI 54.74 66.56 11.8
STL 52.64 65.41 12.8
MSY 77.77 63.08 (14.7)
BWI 51.64 62.73 11.1
BOS 62.50 47.95 (14.6)
LGA 66.23 44.35 (21.9)
DCA 59.39 39.60 (19.8)
MSP 83.03 36.37 (46.7)
TTL 73.39 72.75 (0.6)

603 WN+FL Routes Ranked 1Q13
WN+FL
Network
Rank OD LF
109 MKESFO 86.52
118 MKERSW 85.89
119 LAXMKE 85.88
121 MKEPHX 85.84
132 MCOMKE 85.33
164 MKETPA 83.44
172 LASMKE 82.98
WN Average 77.32
311 MKESEA 74.92
348 FLLMKE 72.49
351 DENMKE 72.20
406 ATLMKE 69.60
466 MCIMKE 66.56
485 MKESTL 65.41
517 MKEMSY 63.08
527 BWIMKE 62.73
591 BOSMKE 47.95
597 LGAMKE 44.35
600 DCAMKE 39.60
602 MKEMSP 36.37
 
Cubsrule
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:14 pm

Quoting TVNWZ (Reply 41):
I'll bite. Which comparable markets would they be?

BNA is probably a comparable market--somewhat larger but without DL's historic strength.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:26 pm

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 43):

At a quick glance you have a couple of flights to NYC, LAX and SLC. Now take into account the music industry and I would assume that would be the case. A couple more flights to ATL and maybe DTW. Smaller planes to MSP. Not counting MEM and CVG. Good example, but I am thinking music is driving it. No?
 
Cubsrule
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:34 pm

Quoting TVNWZ (Reply 44):
Good example, but I am thinking music is driving it. No?

Maybe an aspiration for that business, but it surprises me how many celebrities I see on WN on BNA-LAX (probably the most common route ex-BNA to have "sightings," at least in my experience), and AA has the premium side of the market pretty well sown up.

I don't know what drives SLC as much, but it's generally full in back and always full up front. It's a miserably long time to be on a CR9.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
cmhwn57
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:40 pm

I agree that the original posters comments are very off target. Judging by the loads in & out of MKE for today, a Weds.., a typically very slow travel day, the load factor just on WN alone are in the neighborhood of 85%-90%. Personally I'd kinda like to know where the justification is that WN has an identity crisis in MKE. The load factor sure doesn't reflect an identity crisis. FL on the other hand, loads are very soft for today in particular and that is more than likely cause and effect for the FL brand being absorbed into WN. The loads on WN out of MKE have seemed to be quite strong for the most part with possible exception on the morning originators, but the actual facts that I can see from the flights actually leaving MKE are very strong and I don't see where ORD and MDW are "denting" or skewing the numbers at all. Also WN flies to 15 nonstop destinations from MKE: to New England, Florida, California, Pacific Northwest, and points in between. While it may not be a MDW or ORD, there is still quite a good representation of nonstop destinations served out of MKE.

[Edited 2013-07-17 12:43:47]
 
FlyPNS1
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:52 pm

Quoting TVNWZ (Reply 41):
Which comparable markets would they be?

I would offer IND, RDU, BDL, CMH, MSY or BNA as comparable markets. Most have more nonstop DL service to more markets than MKE, but are similar size. Most also have a decent amount of WN service to compete against.

[Edited 2013-07-17 12:58:13]
 
DTWPurserBoy
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 8:03 pm

NW tried, on several occasions, to make MKE a "focus" city. IIRC, we had numerous flights to such places as DCA, MCO and I think even TPA. Loads were always pretty good but I heard that it was the yield that killed it. When Midway was still around they gave us fits because of their superior inflight service. MKE was always VERY loyal to the hometown kid and rightfully so. Midway was a great airline. Their 2-2 seating on the 717 and Mad Dogs was very smart.
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TVNWZ
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RE: WN Struggling To Gain Recognition At MKE

Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:21 pm

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 47):

I would offer IND, RDU, BDL, CMH, MSY or BNA

Good examples. RDU, IND, CMH are all state capitals. MSY is a tourist destination.

And there is no doubt that MKE does have traffic bleed to ORD and MDW .

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