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AA94
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 5:49 pm

Quoting panamair (Reply 27):

Yes, but the memo says that Delta isn't currently looking for a replacement provider, so it's obviously not worth it to them, at least in the short term, to have duty-free onboard.

The discussion about whether duty-free is feasible (as a concept) is entirely different from whether or not it's feasible for DL. I'm sure they know their numbers and know what the program costs are versus the program benefits.

To me, DL doesn't seem terribly concerned, and that's an indication that the resources are probably better spent elsewhere.
 
PacNWjet
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 5:56 pm

Quoting jreuschl (Reply 46):
How are airlines able to tell if a credit card was authorized for the purchase? Without live connectivity, you wouldn't know.

As hard as it may be to believe, in the not-so-distant past credit card purchases were made without any "connectivity" at all. I worked in the retail industry in the 1980s, i.e., before the internet. If a customer presented a credit card the sale associate would place the card on a small manually-operated device and then place on top a sales slip that had carbon paper between two pieces of paper (one for the original and one of the customer copy). The sales agent would then manually slide a roller device over the sale slip to leave an imprint of the card on the slip (the carbon paper provided a copy on the bottom piece of paper). If the total amount of the sale was under a certain dollar amount that was it. The sales associate was only required to call the credit card company or issuing bank to obtain approval if the total sales amount was over a certain dollar amount. At the store where I worked each cash register station had a booklet, issued about once a week, with the numbers of credit cards that had been reported lost or stolen. Sales associates were supposed to consult that book, but as one might suspect, there were lapses in that policy.

Yes, that's truly how things worked before online connectivity.
 
AADC10
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 6:05 pm

Some of the UA FAs on flights to China complain about the amount of time spent selling duty free. I am sure they would be happy to get rid of duty free.
 
mrcomet
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 6:33 pm

Quoting simairlinenet (Reply 22):
I will confirm what people have alluded to in their anecdotes--duty-free is almost never used across the Atlantic but is very popular across the Pacific. It's all cultural. At Northwest we kept duty-free due everywhere to product consistency--that may be the Delta rationale here for removing everywhere.

It's partially cultural but also partly financial. Duty free is only worth it when the products have a significantly lower cost onboard than in the destination country to warrant carrying them. This must be true in Asia. I see no problem in carrying the product on certain routes which are known to be good sellers. Designating them as duty free routes sounds like an efficient means. Also, with long flight times on Pacific legs, I don't care who is selling what as opposed to shorter transatlantic routes where a half hour seems longer. $10k a flight is good money - like squeezing two more first class seats in. $200 a flight, I'd kill it.
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malaysia
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 7:25 pm

A little off topic, does this possibly relate a bit to the practice now in USA where you no longer have to have an international outbound ticket to buy at most duty free places now in the US, well of course they will charge the tax, but it sounds like they are not selling enough product to the duty free customers, so they are welcoming domestic customers to shop as well albeit with the tax added
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KaiGywer
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 7:32 pm

Quoting malaysia (Reply 54):
A little off topic, does this possibly relate a bit to the practice now in USA where you no longer have to have an international outbound ticket to buy at most duty free places now in the US, well of course they will charge the tax, but it sounds like they are not selling enough product to the duty free customers, so they are welcoming domestic customers to shop as well albeit with the tax added

I think alcohol and tobacco is still restricted to international customers if I remember right from walking into one in ATL two weeks ago (and promptly walking back out once I realized my local liqour store is cheaper). Although I will say this, tobacco was cheaper at ATL than onboard DL, in AMS or in TRD.
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cgnnrw
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 8:45 pm

Quoting PacNWJet (Reply 51):
As hard as it may be to believe, in the not-so-distant past credit card purchases were made without any "connectivity" at all. I worked in the retail industry in the 1980s, i.e., before the internet. If a customer presented a credit card the sale associate would place the card on a small manually-operated device and then place on top a sales slip that had carbon paper between two pieces of paper (one for the original and one of the customer copy). The sales agent would then manually slide a roller device over the sale slip to leave an imprint of the card on the slip (the carbon paper provided a copy on the bottom piece of paper). If the total amount of the sale was under a certain dollar amount that was it. The sales associate was only required to call the credit card company or issuing bank to obtain approval if the total sales amount was over a certain dollar amount. At the store where I worked each cash register station had a booklet, issued about once a week, with the numbers of credit cards that had been reported lost or stolen. Sales associates were supposed to consult that book, but as one might suspect, there were lapses in that policy.Yes, that's truly how things worked before online connectivity.

OH MY GOD!!! I remember those days too, I worked retail in the early 1990s and we handled credit card sales the exact way. My female co-workers were a riot to watch as they tried to handle the carbon sheet without getting ink all over their fingers.

I too never really understood the worth of duty free. However, I have a good friend who is a FA with LH and he says on the flights to Scandinavia and Russia alcohol and cigarettes are the big products and jewelry and perfume are popular on the Asian flights. He told me once he was working C class on the LH JFK-FRA flight a day or two before Christmas. One of the pax was a world renown male opera singer. When he came by with the duty free cart the world famous opera singer stopped him and started pointing to various items in the catalogue "one of those, two of those, another one of those, this two, etc" The final tally was several thousands Euros. The pax said at the end he had absolutely no time to do any Christmas Shopping and this was his only Chance to get some "last minute" items.

I flew DL in June and one thing I noticed was the FAs didn't seem too interested in doing Duty Free anyway. The sped down one aisle and quicky moved down the other. Not sure if anyone bought anything it went by so quickly.
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par13del
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 9:12 pm

Quoting traindoc (Reply 44):
The duty free selection on the major, non US, carriers (BA, AF, KL, LH, SQ, etc. is so much better than on AA, DL, or UA.

It would be good to know whether the same supplier is involved, the supplier of the products needs to be knowledgable of the sales markets out-side of the US to tailor products accordingly.
 
GT4EZY
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 9:14 pm

I think that it is a very cultural thing. In Europe there are many routes that sell hardly anything. But by the same token there are many routes, particularly beach routes originating from places like MAN, that take a fortune in inboard sales. In can sometimes take up to 20 minutes to complete the service on a A320 size aircraft.

I personally don't see what the problem people have with it. It's not really intrusive and on long haul legacy routes they really don't put in any effort to sell anything anyway. It's hardly an annoyance.
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DTWPurserBoy
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 10:45 pm

transoceanic flight never did sell much but flight out of NRT to other Asian destinations did a great business--mainly because the f/a's got a commission on the sales. From NRT-MNL it was not unusual to have $3-4,000 in sales. Same on NRT-ICN. The Pacific Division f/a's are going to be VERY upset. They counted on that money to supplement their income.
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AeroWesty
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 11:00 pm

As popular as Louis Vuitton is to buy tax-free overseas, I'd think airlines would be falling all over themselves to offer a full catalog of it for pre-order. There'd be some serious commission dollars in there for not only the airlines but the flight attendants, too.

I understand there'll be an LV shop opening up at Heathrow T-5 soon, and some comments I've read indicate an expectation of it to do upwards of £1 million per week. I've even heard of women offering cash to people outside of the LV shop in Paris to buy goods for them, once they've hit their purchasing limits, just to get more to bring back to China/SE Asia.

Someone's missing a trick in there somewhere if there's such pent-up demand.
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Viscount724
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 11:11 pm

Quoting brilondon (Reply 30):
I would like to know who thought of it and why they thought it was a good idea.

Becasue it generates additional revenue that more than offsets the cost. Airlines wouldn't be doing it if that wasn't the case.

Quoting CrimsonNL (Reply 47):
I really see on board Duty Free as something from the past. When it actually used to be cheaper and not at normal retail prices.

It still is cheaper depending on the route and product. For example, within Europe airlines often sell cartons of cigarettes on flights to Switzerland which they don't offer on other routes within the EU since they can't sell it duty-free on EU routes. Since Switzerland isn't an EU member they can sell true duty-free on flights to Switzerland and cigarettes are much cheaper (I don't smoke but it's probably about 50% cheaper) than the heavily-taxed cigarettes sold in Switzerland. And cartons of cigarettes aren't very heavy. Similar arguments apply to alcohol but many airlines no longer sell alcohol due to the weight.

Quoting GT4EZY (Reply 58):
I think that it is a very cultural thing. In Europe there are many routes that sell hardly anything. But by the same token there are many routes, particularly beach routes originating from places like MAN, that take a fortune in inboard sales. In can sometimes take up to 20 minutes to complete the service on a A320 size aircraft.

I personally don't see what the problem people have with it. It's not really intrusive and on long haul legacy routes they really don't put in any effort to sell anything anyway. It's hardly an annoyance.

I agree. I've never been bothered by in-flight duty free sales. And on shorthaul flights they only do it when time permits.

Again, the carriers that do it are almost certainly making a profit from it. If they're not, then drop it.
 
syncmaster
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Fri Aug 08, 2014 11:26 pm

Quoting airafreak (Reply 15):
+ DL Businesselite Seat 9D ICN-DTW: Passenger in 9A kept his window shade 1/4 open on that sunny afternoon without any common courtesy to the remaining passengers which kept all of their window shades closed. After a conversation with a cabin crew member, I later found out he had some claustrophobia issue and needed to keep the window shade partially open.



This is a tough one because while I understand your desire (as well as perhaps others desire) to sleep on flights, not everyone does, myself included. I experience the exact opposite problem if all of the shades are closed.

Quoting airafreak (Reply 15):
+ DL Businesselite Seat 79A Upper Deck NRT-LAX: Cabin lights were on the entire eastbound flight upstairs due to a technical issue. THAT wasn't fun for me either as I don't like to sleep with an eye mask.

Agreed. I was on a domestic red-eye (LAX-DTW) on a 763 with AVOD, somehow the reading light control for my seat was triggered by someone else's PTV. It stayed on the whole flight.

As for the duty free, I can't say I'm surprised. I've purchased duty free once on a KLM flight, and only for KLM gear and only because I'm a geek. It always seemed like a bit of a waste.
 
Eljonno
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sat Aug 09, 2014 12:17 am

Quoting PacNWJet (Reply 51):
Yes, that's truly how things worked before online connectivity.

I brought a set of tyres at Kwik Fit last Saturday and they had to take a manual swipe of my card like this because their internet connection was not working. I was just impressed they still had the old machine!
The poor man who was working the desk was stressing out because he had to phone another branch every time someone wanted a quote for tyres and on top of that: it was the hottest week end of the year, so pretty much the whole population of Surrey wanted their air con recharged that day as well.

I wonder if the world could possibly survive without 100Mb broadband now...   

Quoting willd (Reply 17):

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 16):
Personally I think Air Canada does duty free best. Passengers can order off their web site before the flight and have their purchase delivered in a sealed bag at their seat in-flight. Easy to compare prices, and as an incentive to order on the ground, business class passengers get a discount and large orders earn more frequent flier miles than buying on board.

VS and I think BA also do this as well.

I thought this was a good way of doing it as well, until I was flicking through the BA Duty Free offerings in High Life and realised that I couldn't buy a very rare (and VERY expensive) bottle of scotch because I hand't preordered   
 
ltbewr
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sat Aug 09, 2014 2:00 am

I wonder if DL's 'bean counters' have figured out the possible profits from Duty Free is not as good with the all the costs of paperwork, inventory counts and management, time it takes from customer service, theft issues and so on.
 
cgnnrw
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sat Aug 09, 2014 5:02 pm

Do duty free sales count towards JV revenue? DL discontinues duty free but AF, KL,VA and AZ keep it does that mean DL get a share of those sales as well?
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Prost
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 3:34 am

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 61):
Again, the carriers that do it are almost certainly making a profit from it. If they're not, then drop it.

Delta just did. Delta and DFASS obviously had some sort of contract that DL just dropped unilaterally. I think it's fair to assume that DL felt DFASS wasn't living up to their end of their obligations.
 
PHX787
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 4:23 am

Quoting SonomaFlyer (Reply 1):
Not selling enough stuffs and cuts down on the weight hauled all over the world. Makes sense.

It's like buying candy at a movie theater.... I remember buying a bottle of liquor for my grandpa at NRT and it was about ¥1000 cheaper at the NRT duty free than onboard their 747....only thing i bought from their "duty free" thing was a set of miniature airplane models that you can get pretty much anywhere (and that set was roughly $15 IIRC)
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brilondon
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 3:42 pm

Quoting cgnnrw (Reply 65):
Do duty free sales count towards JV revenue? DL discontinues duty free but AF, KL,VA and AZ keep it does that mean DL get a share of those sales as well?

Could somebody tell me who actually owns the duty free concessions on aircraft in general? Do the airlines buy the products from a centralized marketing company or are they taking on that responsibility themselves as the purchaser? Are the airlines directly benefiting from the sales or do they just get a commission on what they can flog to the couple of hundred potential customers?
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DTWPurserBoy
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 7:47 pm

MNL is one city that had has the best plan. Their duty free shop is just prior to approaching customs AFTER the flight--no worries about security, prices are good.

Duty Free revenue was never all that great.. DL (and NW before them) have long since contracted it out to an outside vendor. They got a piece of the profit. We went through at least three different vendors.

The carts are heavy, take up a lot of space were not that great a deal. For instance Frangrance.net is by far cheaper for high-end perfumes and colognes than duty free and it is shipped directly to your home--no carrying or breakage to worry about. Some of the liquor used to be a good deal--a liter of Grey Goose for twenty bucks was a pretty fair deal.

A lot of it was culturaly driven--Americans rarely purchased anything. When the dollar to yen rate was great the Japanese were great customers--they would think nothing of buying over a thousand dollars apiece. Then we started having problems with stolen/fraudulent credit cards the limit dropped to $500 per card then $500 per customer--we had no way to verify the validity of the card. There was no such thing is wifi then.

Next to go will be that air mall catalogue. I keep looking at all the weird junk they sell and wonder if anyone really does buy that stuff.
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DTWPurserBoy
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 7:55 pm

Quoting brilondon (Reply 68):
Could somebody tell me who actually owns the duty free concessions on aircraft in general? Do the airlines buy the products from a centralized marketing company or are they taking on that responsibility themselves as the purchaser? Are the airlines directly benefiting from the sales or do they just get a commission on what they can flog to the couple of hundred potential customers?

There are several companies that provide the service. Google then and you will see. Very few, if any, airlines actually own the merchandise sold onboard. Too expensive to maintain, inventory and warehouse because it has to be held "in bond."
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mcogator
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 8:23 pm

A single pack of Marlboro's in NYC is $15. A carton(10 packs) on a DL flight is/was ~$35. Even in Florida where a pack is $6, it is still a significant savings.
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RunwayGirl
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 9:34 pm

Quoting qqflyboy (Reply 49):

Fraudulent charges are a problem. Airlines collectively lose hundreds of millions of dollars per year (we know, for example, that Cathay was grappling with a serious fraud problem, and turned to Arinc for a real-time credit card solution). Low estimates peg the industry-wide problem at 2%, but obviously certain airlines and routes are more heavily impacted. I do wonder how domestic compares to intl in this regard.
 
bhill
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 9:41 pm

Quoting mcogator (Reply 71):
A single pack of Marlboro's in NYC is $15. A carton(10 packs) on a DL flight is/was ~$35. Even in Florida where a pack is $6, it is still a significant savings.

Still too cheap.....yup...I'm an ex-smoker..Ohhh Doc.........
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airportugal310
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 9:46 pm

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 69):

I too often wonder about SkyMall...and even Hammacher Schlemmer for that matter..

Some things seen viable, but in all fairness they do label themselves as unique items so I suppose it's no surprise
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DTWPurserBoy
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 9:49 pm

Quoting RunwayGirl (Reply 72):

Fraudulent charges are a problem. Airlines collectively lose hundreds of millions of dollars per year (we know, for example, that Cathay was grappling with a serious fraud problem, and turned to Arinc for a real-time credit card solution). Low estimates peg the industry-wide problem at 2%, but obviously certain airlines and routes are more heavily impacted. I do wonder how domestic compares to intl in this regard.

Not to pick on any one nation but for a while we got a list of people not to accept cards from and they all appeared to be of Chinese origin.

The Japanese were exceptionally good customers--they seriously like high-end merchandise like Hermes, Chanel, etc. We would sell out of $1,000 scarves and $200 men's ties. Then a few of our rather dishonest employees started switching out the real Hermes scarves for the $5 Seoul knockoffs. Several got caught and terminated. One I know for a fact used to return them to various department stores claiming they were "gifts from a boyfriend" and get credit. She was prosecuted as well as terminated.

One morning I got a call from inflight asking me how many Duty Free carts had been on my airplane from FRA to DTW the day before. I told them two--as usual. I also told them that the duty free representative had boarded the flight to check the seals after the passengers deplanes. I did not hear anything else for a few months until I got ANOTHER call--from the legal department (VERY serious stuff) asking me how many carts had been on the flight. Again, I told them two. They said only one cart was returned to the warehouse. I told them I seriously doubted that a flight attendant had humped a 300 lb. cart off the airplane on his or her back, passed through customs, immigration and security and to check with the guys that do the catering and loading. It seems they had found the cart empty on the outskirts of the airport somewhere.

At least they laughed. Who knew lawyers had a sense of humor?
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DTWPurserBoy
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 10:03 pm

Quoting mcogator (Reply 71):
A single pack of Marlboro's in NYC is $15.

That explains why so many cartons of cheap Virginia cigarettes wind up being peddled on the streets of New York. The State Police say they catch hundreds of vehicles plying up and down I-95.
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yellowtail
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 10:13 pm

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 69):
MNL is one city that had has the best plan. Their duty free shop is just prior to approaching customs AFTER the flight--no worries about security, prices are good.

Inbound duty free. Not uncommon.

There is one in BZE that does enormous business with locals returning home and tourists alike. They even let crews through immigration to go do their shopping before getting back on their flight
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Qatara340
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 10:37 pm

I wonder why no airline does route-specific duty free??? For example, flights to the Maldives or Seychelles will offer beach equipment, snorkeling gear, sun cream, or other items. People going to Toronto during winter can purchase sweaters or shals? Perhaps sim cards, cell phones, chargers, ect... Duty Free is pretty much the same every airline, except of course the brand of perfumes, pens, ect... I don't think a lot of people will be interested in buying a MontBlanc wallet for $1400 on a plane?!
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flyinggoat
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 11:01 pm

With so many of DL's aircraft having AVOD, why don't they just go all digital instead of the heavy catalogs? AFAIK, all their screens are touch sensitive, and browsing products should be pretty easy on them. There are also built in card readers for payments. The airline would still have to carry the weight of the products, so maybe that is more of the issue here.

Quoting TreeHillRavens (Reply 8):
Try to fly Asiana Airlines or EVA Air.

   I flew on OZ last year, and I was amazed at how many duty free purchased there were.

Quoting PacNWJet (Reply 51):

Yes, that's truly how things worked before online connectivity.

I still run across this every now and then.
 
N1120A
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 11:04 pm

I'd say what keeps duty free alcohol sales in the US alive - particularly in states like California that have low taxes and wide availability - are liquid restrictions and checked bag fees.

Quoting airafreak (Reply 15):

+ DL Businesselite Seat 9D ICN-DTW: Passenger in 9A kept his window shade 1/4 open on that sunny afternoon without any common courtesy to the remaining passengers which kept all of their window shades closed.

If you don't like the shade up, book the window. I leave it up.

Quoting bennett123 (Reply 24):

Seriously reduction of Alcohol sales is doubtless a good thing.

Why?

Quoting homer787 (Reply 32):
The only things that might be cheaper is the Tobacco and Alcohol, but declaring them to US Customs is a hassle

You don't have to declare if within your limits.

Quoting homer787 (Reply 32):
I've never understood the point of duty free. Pay a 25% premium in order to save 7-10% on tax.

You are looking at that as an American only.

Quoting airbazar (Reply 34):
The U.S. has such low taxes that, with very few exceptions, you can find the same products at any retail store for less than what it costs you at a Duty Free location.

Some of the residents of states with government controlled liquor sales are probably going to disagree with you.

Quoting airbazar (Reply 34):

Duty Free on flights originating to/from the U.S. is completely pointless. Likewise for Duty Free stores at U.S. airports.

Except, of course, if you don't want to check a bag. Also, I'd bet that duty free sales to/from SLC do well. Same with PHL and for people who use BOS from surrounding states.

Quoting CrimsonNL (Reply 47):

My big question is, will they keep the SkyMall catalogs on board? There's nothing like shopping for a couch with a built-in beer fridge or an automatic breakfast cereal dispenser while cruising at 37.000ft!!

Up until a few years ago, SkyMall was incredibly profitable. Since, the hegemony of Amazon has grown and they have taken a beating.

Quoting malaysia (Reply 54):
A little off topic, does this possibly relate a bit to the practice now in USA where you no longer have to have an international outbound ticket to buy at most duty free places now in the US, well of course they will charge the tax, but it sounds like they are not selling enough product to the duty free customers, so they are welcoming domestic customers to shop as well albeit with the tax added

That doesn't apply to alcohol and tobacco, which are their bread and butter. Also, it seems like it might be a smart move in the era of liquid bans to sell things like perfume. Charging $10 more for a perfume might be cheaper than a $25 fee for a checked bag.

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 69):
MNL is one city that had has the best plan. Their duty free shop is just prior to approaching customs AFTER the flight--no worries about security, prices are good.

That happens in a lot of places. Its a big business in Australia, where there are massive savings on spirits.
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trintocan
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Sun Aug 10, 2014 11:59 pm

Quoting yellowtail (Reply 77):
Inbound duty free. Not uncommon.There is one in BZE that does enormous business with locals returning home and tourists alike. They even let crews through immigration to go do their shopping before getting back on their flight

BGI and POS both have duty-free on arrival which is very popular. I often find it very convenient when arriving into POS to buy a bottle or two of spirit or bubbly there before clearing Customs - no hassle of lugging that weight all the way on my journey.

On the topic of duty-free, here's an arrangement which made BGI (in particular) and ANU lots of money in the past. In the days before heightened aviation security forced passengers in transit on flights to remain on-board - and many flights in the Caribbean were multi-stop (eg POS - BGI - ANU - KIN, POS - BGI - ANU - LGW and so on) - passengers were often free to disembark at one of the stops and visit the terminal. BGI's many duty-free shops thus gained lots of business from passengers flying to and from POS at a time when Trinidad's duty-free offerings were decidedly inferior. Many passengers flying between other islands with flights calling at BGI similarly benefitted. That largely made up for the lack of on-board duty free on BW and LI at that time - in any case back then they did not explore that concept and they would have had strong competition from the stopover points! Gone are those days - I recall fondly in 1999 being able to disembark in both BGI and ANU on my way from POS to KIN, the only time I have set foot in four countries in one day!

BGI still offer an in-bond system of duty-free shopping. If one goes to downtown Bridgetown and buys duty-free alcohol and tobacco at the shops there, they will retain them and deliver them to your flight or ship, provided there is enough time between purchase and departure. This arrangement, implemented because the products are for export if bought duty-free, allows passengers to benefit from the larger ranges downtown compared to the airport.

Overall I would imagine that the profitability of duty-free on board depends on the route. As alluded to by others I would surmise that flights to Asia are very profitable from this standpoint, given that AC for instance offers a far greater range of product on trans-Pacific flights than on flights elsewhere. Over here in the UK I have noticed that holiday flights to the Canary Islands (which are in the EU but, as a duty free zone, are outside the Customs zone) do more duty free business than do flights to destinations within the Customs zone - and cigarettes are the major sales drivers (intra-EU Customs zone flights cannot sell duty-free alcohol or tobacco). Personally I only tend to buy model aircraft from on-board duty free shops.

Trintocan.
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Mon Aug 11, 2014 12:39 am

Quoting airbazar (Reply 34):
The U.S. has such low taxes that, with very few exceptions, you can find the same products at any retail store for less than what it costs you at a Duty Free location

I agree. In certain states (NC and HI immediately spring to mind) it is cheaper to buy locally than at duty free. If it wasn't for 3-3-3 I would buy liquor before going to the airport. Unfortunately I can no longer carry it through security, and I won't check it in my baggage for both a fear of breakage and the fact I am normally hitting up on weight limits without adding 3 bottles of gin or whiskey.

Quoting airbazar (Reply 34):
Duty Free on flights originating to/from the U.S. is completely pointless. Likewise for Duty Free stores at U.S. airports.

See above, because I can't buy it before security I buy at duty free. It is still a MASSIVE saving on Australian prices.

Quoting N1120A (Reply 80):
uoting homer787 (Reply 32):
I've never understood the point of duty free. Pay a 25% premium in order to save 7-10% on tax.

You are looking at that as an American only.

  

In many other countries the local excise on liquor makes it MUCH cheaper to buy duty free. I save approximately 50% by buying at duty free in LAX compared to Australian liquor stores.

Quoting N1120A (Reply 80):
Its a big business in Australia, where there are massive savings on spirits.

Inbound duty free is HUGE here, bigger than outbound, and precisely because of Australians returning home who buy up to their limit rather than pay extortionate domestic prices.
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brilondon
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Mon Aug 11, 2014 1:03 pm

Quoting airafreak (Reply 15):
+ DL Businesselite Seat 9D ICN-DTW: Passenger in 9A kept his window shade 1/4 open on that sunny afternoon without any common courtesy to the remaining passengers which kept all of their window shades closed. After a conversation with a cabin crew member, I later found out he had some claustrophobia issue and needed to keep the window shade partially open.

Really? On a sunny after noon somebody wants to keep their shade open? Oh no what is this world coming to...
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klm672
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RE: Delta To Discontinue Inflight Sales Of Duty Free

Mon Aug 11, 2014 1:23 pm

Quoting brilondon (Reply 83):
Quoting airafreak (Reply 15):+ DL Businesselite Seat 9D ICN-DTW: Passenger in 9A kept his window shade 1/4 open on that sunny afternoon without any common courtesy to the remaining passengers which kept all of their window shades closed. After a conversation with a cabin crew member, I later found out he had some claustrophobia issue and needed to keep the window shade partially open.
Really? On a sunny after noon somebody wants to keep their shade open? Oh no what is this world coming to...

Yup, it happened to me as well. AMS-DTW on DL A330, first time flying in years and I knew it would be the last time in a while (obviously not a frequent flyer). I bought a window seat and left my shade open on that flight until I got a "yo bro, can you close that shade???" Ugh. I did, but felt like saying "if you wanted the window shade closed the whole flight, why don't you get a window seat".

I know, I know, people use flying as getting from point A to point B and don't care about what's going on outside like us.

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