A Guy Called Tyketto
2010-09-28 07:18:56 UTC
It's all over the media: FlightGlobal, FlightAware, NPR, NY
Times, etc. So SWA picks up TRS at a good price. However, it brings a
lot of pros and cons (yes, this is going to be long):
Generally SWA wouldn't do something like this unless it smelled blood
somewhere, but I'm not entirely sure which 'blood' they smelled. But
there are a number of things I can see that come into play.
Atlanta. With SWA's model of avoiding the major hubs of other (legacy)
airlines, I'm wondering if they would go straight into KATL. Is there
another airport capable of handling a B737, B717, or DC9? If so, could
they move shop to there, similar to how KDAL is to KDFW?
This creates a HUGE advantage to SWA over FFT/MEP/RPA at KMKE. That is
MEP's hub, and SWA started up service there, because they smelled blood
from MEP being bought by RPA. MKE is also TRS' hub, so with SWA landing
this deal, they are going to have a huge presence there. Could this be
the battleground between Republic and Co. and SWA from the fallout of
SWA being the loser in the bidding for FFT?
New York. SWA obviously gets more service to LGA from this, but how
would this adversely affect their EWR service that they will be
starting? we know that SWA got a huge deal on the EWR gates (basically
handed on a silver platter) as UAL/COA had to give them up for that
deal to go through, but would more service from either one positively
or negatively affect the other? Remains to be seen.
Aircraft. Sorry, ladies and gents, but expect the B717s to go. SWA is
still receiving B737-700s they ordered, and still have some on the
books to receive. I can see those replacing the B717s they have, since
they will be gaining 50something B737-700s from TRS. I believe SWA has
enough B737s on order still to offset the B712s they'll be getting. But
over time, those will go, and go for another reason outright (see
Destinations. We already know that the -700 has the range for it, but
this gives SWA the access to Mexico and the Caribbean that they've
wanted. MKJP, MMUN, TJSJ, MYNN, etc. Perhaps TNCM could be started?
Either way, like with WJA, expect their deal with VOI to fall through.
SWA and DAL/NWA: AirTran has been a thorn in DL's ATL/MCO hubs
for years now... LCC with 2 class service, pre-assigned seating, etc,
etc... a real viable DL alternative for the biz customer. Also, SWA has
said they will eliminate the dual cabin and eliminate the
the pre-assigned seating... so the biz customers in ATL that have been
using AirTran can wave bye bye to their free upgrades.
SWA and AAL: AirTran services DFW (rather small) but services
DFW with flights to MKE, BWI, ATL, and MCO, offering again, legacy
style services at cheaper fares, which drives yields down. SWA and AAL
were 2 members signing the "Five Party Agreement" concerning the
Wright Amendment, which had provisions stating that SWA nor any of
their subsidiaries may operate at DFW. So TRS' DFW service will be
gone. The 5 Party Agreement also stipulates SWA is restricted to 16
gates at KDAL and NO intl. service to any airport including KDAL within 80
miles of Love Field except DFW, which they can't fly from without giving
up some of the 16 gates at KDAL. So KDFW (and AAL) get a huge boost out
of this. The only way SWA could get around it would be interlining with
VOI, which like I mentioned above, will probably fall through.
Like I said.. I don't know whose blood they smelled: TRS being in
trouble (which nothing really indicated that they were), DAL/NWA having
issues (once again, nothing indicated), response to UAL/COA (once
again, nothing, since that merger was just approved), out of spite with
RPA for losing FFT, or simply "just because".. Either way, this helps
SWA out a lot, especially with winter vacation season coming up, and
even more so if this gets DOT/DOJ approval.
To this, I'll add that I'd see some routes going away completely, let
alone some destinations:
ROC is about an hour's drive from BUF.
ACY is 45 minutes from PHL.
PNS? Maybe an hour from PFN, which SWA is starting service to.
CRW? nothing really out there at all.
BMI? Maybe, just to keep an eye on how AAY does in Peoria, but even
that is chartered. MLI? I don't think they could fill enough seats on
either of those routes to stay profitable. Though I think it would be
nice if they tried; it would provide a go-between for MDW/STL or
MDW-OMA, so pax wouldn't have to drive as far.
DSM? See BMI.
BBG? Maybe 2 hours to LIT, 3 to TUL. If the tourist trap doesn't dry up..
UTA? gone. SWA will use MEM instead.
GPT? hour from MSY.
AVL? see CRW.
FNT? Hour and a half to DTW.
Expect SWA to close up shop at KDCA. They already have a huge base at
KBWI, and with them taking in TRS (who is also hubbed there), plus
having service to KIAD, KDCA doesn't look profitable.
Tough call on those routes. The one that would be really interesting
though, would be EYW. IIRC, TRS uses their B712s on that route from
ATL. Seeing that that runway is less than a mile long (somewhere around
4800ft), a B737 would need to be rather light to take off there. I
could see it being of use though, as it is the closest US port of call
to MMUN (and Havana). Anyone know what the minimum TODA a -700 needs?
- From what I can tell, the shortest runway SWA uses is at KSNA, which is
5701ft, so I would think it would be around 1 mile.
SWA just mentioned that they plan to keep the B712s instead of
sell them off (HAL would have been a potential buyer), so I could see
them being used of ferry flights to smaller destinations.
Brad Littlejohn | Email: ***@sbcglobal.net
Unix Systems Administrator, | ***@ozemail.com.au
Web + NewsMaster, BOFH.. Smeghead! :) | http://www.wizard.com/~tyketto
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