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b727fan
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Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2004 8:54 am

Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 3:48 pm

First of all I'd like to wish a.net crew for running a fantastic site everyone here a very Happy Holiday season. I'll be off to a new assignment and probably wont be able to view this site until sometime after the new years!

Now, as it turns out, I travel via IAH quite a bit and Houston has become a second home! This city is truly diverse and multi-cultural city with robust economy. Weather sucks (for me) but everything else is great! I notice that IAH is way undeserved. Are there plans to serve more EU destinations (either UA or other EU carriers) and doesn't it make sense to have more ASIA connection from IAH? Houston is home to a substantial Asian population (middle-east to far-east) But the direct flights seem very limited and non-existence to the sub-incontinent realm of Asia which is benefiting EK & QR as well as TK who serve IAH frequently.

Which other cities in US share the same characteristic? Dallas comes to mind, but I think DFW is more diversified as AA's operation is much larger in comparison to UA's @ IAH (routes/network). Both Houston and Dallas metro areas have grown significantly in population since the 80s. Sure, a lot of corporate, but with that come relocated jobs and families.....

Thanks for your input and ideas.
 
GalaxyFlyer
Posts: 1726
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 4:44 am

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:03 pm

They’d not “underserved”; the carriers, who constantly search for profitable routes, haven’t found a route OUT of IAH that’s more profitable than what’s on offer. The sub-continent is heavil6 served thru EK and TK. IAH is a hub for UA. Service levels are based on demand that can served at an acceptable fare to recover costs, not because someone wants a non-stop.

I fly out of BDL, it’s nearly impossible to find non-stops to RSW—its not underserved, it’s the reality of cost/revenue.

GF
 
Karlsands
Posts: 28
Joined: Sat Sep 16, 2017 2:53 pm

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:06 pm

Kcos could be one, huge land space, long runways yet always a ghost town. Of course DEN isn’t far north, however as population and road traffic grows I could see it as a proper alternative
 
Chuska
Posts: 143
Joined: Mon May 24, 2010 4:59 pm

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:16 pm

I think DFW and IAH are served very well. The cities that are underserved in my opinion are the ones that were major hubs at one time like Cincinnati, Cleveland, Memphis, St. Louis, and Pittsburgh. Also those that are close to a major hub like Colorado Springs and Toledo. As Denver grows, more and more people from COS drive to DEN for cheaper tickets and nonstop flights. Not much can be done about that.
 
rbavfan
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Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2015 5:53 am

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:23 pm

Karlsands wrote:
Kcos could be one, huge land space, long runways yet always a ghost town. Of course DEN isn’t far north, however as population and road traffic grows I could see it as a proper alternative


Colorado Springs has tried several times to be a reliever airport. It's failed as such every time.
 
pmanni1
Posts: 18
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2018 10:17 am

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:30 pm

Chuska wrote:
I think DFW and IAH are served very well. The cities that are underserved in my opinion are the ones that were major hubs at one time like Cincinnati, Cleveland, Memphis, St. Louis, and Pittsburgh. Also those that are close to a major hub like Colorado Springs and Toledo. As Denver grows, more and more people from COS drive to DEN for cheaper tickets and nonstop flights. Not much can be done about that.

STL has fared better than most. WN is up to 50 destinations.
 
PSAatSAN4Ever
Posts: 274
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2018 5:38 pm

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:34 pm

In doing a ratio of the size of the major American cities to their level of air service, I cannot think of any city that surpasses Bakersfield (BFL) in terms of underserved relative to its size. It is the 62nd largest metropolitan area in the U.S., between Albany, NY, and Greenville, SC. The population of California's poorest large city is approaching 900,000, and it has the third longest commercial runway in the state, but it barely holds on to 1x SFO, 2x DEN, and 3x PHX, all on RJ's. It took a grant of some sort just to re-start BFL-DFW which ran for many years.

There are a multitude of reasons why, the proximity to LAX being the primary cause, but the lack of premium demand makes this an eternal hard-luck case. On the other hand, Fresno (or as we called it when I was growing up in Bakersfield called it, "Bakersfield Farther North") is booming. Fresno is just under one million people (#55 on the list), but it is orders of magnitude better connected to the rest of the U.S.!

Karlsands wrote:
Kcos could be one, huge land space, long runways yet always a ghost town. Of course DEN isn’t far north, however as population and road traffic grows I could see it as a proper alternative


I maintain that locating the new DEN to the northeast instead of in the south was an act of mercy to Colorado Springs (COS). Had it been placed somewhere on the way to Colorado Springs, it might have killed that airport off completely,
 
flyfresno
Posts: 668
Joined: Tue May 02, 2006 6:18 am

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:35 pm

PSAatSAN4Ever wrote:
In doing a ratio of the size of the major American cities to their level of air service, I cannot think of any city that surpasses Bakersfield (BFL) in terms of underserved relative to its size. It is the 62nd largest metropolitan area in the U.S., between Albany, NY, and Greenville, SC. The population of California's poorest large city is approaching 900,000, and it has the third longest commercial runway in the state, but it barely holds on to 1x SFO, 2x DEN, and 3x PHX, all on RJ's. It took a grant of some sort just to re-start BFL-DFW which ran for many years.

There are a multitude of reasons why, the proximity to LAX being the primary cause, but the lack of premium demand makes this an eternal hard-luck case. On the other hand, Fresno (or as we called it when I was growing up in Bakersfield called it, "Bakersfield Farther North") is booming. Fresno is just under one million people (#55 on the list), but it is orders of magnitude better connected to the rest of the U.S.!

Karlsands wrote:
Kcos could be one, huge land space, long runways yet always a ghost town. Of course DEN isn’t far north, however as population and road traffic grows I could see it as a proper alternative


I maintain that locating the new DEN to the northeast instead of in the south was an act of mercy to Colorado Springs (COS). Had it been placed somewhere on the way to Colorado Springs, it might have killed that airport off completely,


I was gonna say BFL. Crazy how much leakage there is from the region...
 
joeblow10
Posts: 130
Joined: Mon Jun 04, 2018 11:58 pm

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:38 pm

rbavfan wrote:
Karlsands wrote:
Kcos could be one, huge land space, long runways yet always a ghost town. Of course DEN isn’t far north, however as population and road traffic grows I could see it as a proper alternative


Colorado Springs has tried several times to be a reliever airport. It's failed as such every time.


sort of going to disagree.

COS could maintain service to a lot of places... the problem is F9 seems to be the only guy willing to try it without cannibalizing the DEN base, and they go less than daily in virtually all of them outside of LAS/PHX. But the fact that they’re able to run SAT/ATL/MSP/IAD next summer again shows there’s at least a decent base of flyers to work with.

I agree it won’t be substantially increasing service anytime soon - but I also think they haven’t really gotten to “try” being a true reliever yet
 
rajincajun01
Posts: 502
Joined: Thu Oct 14, 2010 2:16 am

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:52 pm

I would say PIE is underserved. It has grown significantly in the past decade and could support service to some major areas like NYC.

I would also say SHV. There is a lot of bleeding to DFW due to high prices, but recent additions and upgauges have seemed successful.
 
PSAatSAN4Ever
Posts: 274
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2018 5:38 pm

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:59 pm

The only premium demand that BFL ever drives is when oil is expensive. Other than that, nothing.

Growing up in Bakersfield, I was Kassandra, the character in Greek mythology who was given the gift of prophecy by the Gods but was simultaneously cursed to never be believed. Looking at a freeway map, the incoming Highway 58 from the east came in but ended at highway 99. I asked, "why isn't this being extended to I-5?", and the replies sounded like pre-programmed robot replies: "oh, it's too expensive", "people can just take other roads!", and my personal favorite, "hey, we're not L.A.! We don't have that kind of traffic!"

Yes, you do. You always have. There is not a single high speed connector road from I-5 to Highway 99 or to eastbound 58, so all this traffic ends up on city streets. And now, as I told you more than 40 years ago, you're going to have to build a freeway to connect 58 to I-5, and it's going to take out a lot of houses! And they are. And it is costing a LOT more than predicted.

I just can't understand how this place has tried to hide from the world, and instead of developing its own identity, it has tried to hide from the world, and resultingly, instead of the city controlling the traffic, the traffic controls Bakersfield. The loss of all its potential will always break my heart.
 
flyfresno
Posts: 668
Joined: Tue May 02, 2006 6:18 am

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 5:02 pm

If someone had a bunch of extra time on their hands, they could compare MSA to average seats per week of smaller airports. I’m guessing most of the contenders fall around the #150-#250 range for passenger traffic in the US.
 
flyfresno
Posts: 668
Joined: Tue May 02, 2006 6:18 am

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 5:11 pm

PSAatSAN4Ever wrote:
The only premium demand that BFL ever drives is when oil is expensive. Other than that, nothing.

Growing up in Bakersfield, I was Kassandra, the character in Greek mythology who was given the gift of prophecy by the Gods but was simultaneously cursed to never be believed. Looking at a freeway map, the incoming Highway 58 from the east came in but ended at highway 99. I asked, "why isn't this being extended to I-5?", and the replies sounded like pre-programmed robot replies: "oh, it's too expensive", "people can just take other roads!", and my personal favorite, "hey, we're not L.A.! We don't have that kind of traffic!"

Yes, you do. You always have. There is not a single high speed connector road from I-5 to Highway 99 or to eastbound 58, so all this traffic ends up on city streets. And now, as I told you more than 40 years ago, you're going to have to build a freeway to connect 58 to I-5, and it's going to take out a lot of houses! And they are. And it is costing a LOT more than predicted.

I just can't understand how this place has tried to hide from the world, and instead of developing its own identity, it has tried to hide from the world, and resultingly, instead of the city controlling the traffic, the traffic controls Bakersfield. The loss of all its potential will always break my heart.


Super off topic, but Fresno has had similar freeway issues. The city could have blocked off land for a an E/W freeway in the north of the city as few as 15 years ago, but now Herndon Avenue (the likely candidate route) is almost completely “fenced in” by homes and businesses, and buying up all that developed land for a freeway would be cost prohibitive. I see places like SLC blocking off land while building highway 85 so it can be developed as a feeeway in the future and wonder, why can’t cities like Fresno and Bakersfield think ahead like that...
 
CairnterriAIR
Posts: 599
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2008 1:52 am

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 5:25 pm

New Haven!!! Runway and other operational issues have kept service there at minimum....one carrier. But no doubt the market could sustain more service. Same goes for Groton/New London. Perhaps when the A220’s make inroads there will be more flights.
 
geologyrocks
Posts: 130
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2011 12:05 am

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 6:46 pm

Personally I don't think there is such a thing as an airport that is underserved. Airlines are in the business to make money and if it's profitable then it's profitable. The hubs that used to be hubs are in cities that have their own set of problems. Memphis is a disaster. I remember when Delta started pulling out how so many different people kept saying good riddance and that Delta was holding the city back. Somehow, if they could only free up gate space then Memphis would thrive. Well, now they're tearing down a concourse because surprise - no one actually wants to go there.

Nobody wanted to fly to central Florida until Walt built his park. It's not up to airlines to generate demand to a city. That responsibility 100% falls on the city itself.
 
thomasphoto60
Posts: 3885
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2000 1:04 pm

Re: Underserved US airports

Sun Dec 02, 2018 9:25 pm

Chuska wrote:
I think DFW and IAH are served very well.
Agreed, all things being equal, Texas is very well served internationally, IAH with some 20+Int'l Long and Short-haul carriers (not including UA or NK). DFW with a respectable portfolio of foreign flag carriers, not to leave out AUS with BA and LH. As an IAH 'fanboy' I naturally want to see increased ops (int'l and domestic), but frankly, I just do not expect to see any new carriers in the coming year (pray that I am wrong), especially on the long haul int'l front. ET and MU have dropped hints but so far nothing. We shall see.....
"Show me the Braniffs"
 
dfwjim1
Posts: 1972
Joined: Fri Sep 09, 2011 8:46 pm

Re: Underserved US airports

Mon Dec 03, 2018 12:24 am

Of course as others have said, airlines will locate flights at cities where they can make a profit. Living in South Florida I am in a constant state of hoping that a European carrier or two would start service to PBI since MIA and FLL have become so crowded. Probably just a pipe dream though...LOL.
 
adamanbermuda
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:19 am

Re: Underserved US airports

Mon Dec 03, 2018 3:16 am

CLT is certainly not underserved, but the AA domination kills any chance at other airlines coming in. I'm pretty sure AA has 90% of the market share at CLT which is the highest of any major US airport. INC had plenty of their own problems, but AA introduced CLT-CUR just long enough for INC to drop it before then reducing frequency as soon as INC cancelled it. AA has recently announced CLT-MUC so we'll see how that affects the existing LH service. CLT is probably the hardest market to break into at this point.

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