|Quoting RyanairGuru (Reply 148):|
The market from Australia to SFO really is tiny in comparison to LAX. It's always left me baffled why this, but off the top of my head the market ex-LAX is something like five times larger than SFO. That's why anyone who isn't United struggles on the route, and also why UA went for LAX-MEL against established competition rather than SFO-MEL.
I don't disagree with you, but I am puzzled as to what Virgin does with international.
SYD-LAX was a fairly obvious route (and inherited by Borghettii), but I'm not sure where else would be better, or if anywhere would.
We've been through all this with Air NZ - the next US city - and it's not a long list. Delta might shower Virgin with kisses if Virgin started SYD-SEA, but kisses don't pay the rent. There's nowhere else on the west coast (other than maybe SFO) that I think would be a money printer, and going inland raises issues of either range or market. I can't see Borghetti embracing SYD-LAS, for example, and PHX would have the same problems with Delta feed, as would DEN - which I like but which is a long way.
If "the route on the way to Europe" is a problem, what happens? Would it be better to make Singapore the partner, as Air NZ has done, for the route(s) to Europe, leaving Virgin just to serve Singapore, but (a) would Etihad chuck a mental, and (b) does it have to be one or the other? Could they leave AUS/AUH to Etihad and simply code share?
Despite Borghetti's coyness about it, I assume TigerAir will take over DPS at least - but I don't think Tiger's A320 (Ceo) could make HKT from anywhere other than maybe DRW. Does Tiger have the right fleet to be the nearer Asia player?
Almost every suggestion I've heard is a fake of Qantas (or Jetstar), and I'd like to hope there's more to it than that. Crikey's Ben Sandilands has a provocative headline:
"Virgin Australia flags major international initiatives"
That wasn't my take-away from what Borghetti said, unless making international profitable counts as a major initiative, in which case - fair enough, and I'd be interested to know how, because I can't see many answers, only a fair ol' swag of questions.