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twoNeurons
Jun 13, 2012, 4:51 PM
There's very little to no charter traffic right now between Asia and North America. It seems there is a window for a LCO in this space, especially one that is formed from an existing airline that wants to lower the cost of Union pensions etc.

I wouldn't be surprised if they focused any human expansion on a low-cost operator like this.

ACT7
Jun 13, 2012, 6:30 PM
There's very little to no charter traffic right now between Asia and North America. It seems there is a window for a LCO in this space, especially one that is formed from an existing airline that wants to lower the cost of Union pensions etc.

I wouldn't be surprised if they focused any human expansion on a low-cost operator like this.
Didn't some LCC out of HK try to YVR not too long ago and it failed miserably. I can't remember the name anymore but they had a red and white livery. They've since gone under...

My guess is that whatever AC comes up with, it will have to be some sort of hybrid product. If you've had the misfortune of being stuck on one of AC's older 767's that operate between YYZ and FCO, even their premium economy is shit.

Gordon
Jun 13, 2012, 7:58 PM
I wonder what equipment they intend to use ? the 767s have significant problems with fuel efficiency, so in the long run 767s are not the way to go.

st7860
Jun 13, 2012, 8:02 PM
I wonder what equipment they intend to use ? the 767s have significant problems with fuel efficiency, so in the long run 767s are not the way to go.

Still a lower burn rate than a 747-400 right?

twoNeurons
Jun 13, 2012, 8:30 PM
Didn't some LCC out of HK try to YVR not too long ago and it failed miserably. I can't remember the name anymore but they had a red and white livery. They've since gone under...

My guess is that whatever AC comes up with, it will have to be some sort of hybrid product. If you've had the misfortune of being stuck on one of AC's older 767's that operate between YYZ and FCO, even their premium economy is shit.

Harmony Airways? Oasis? There's been a couple. All startups, though, nothing with a large carrier backing it and able to shuffle passengers to it.

767s aren't as efficient, that's true. However, they're a pretty good size and have a good bang for buck when it comes to range. Most of East Asia is the perfect range for that plane.

If I were to take a guess, I'd think that instead of retiring their 767 fleet when they take delivery of their 787s, they'll "sell" them to the new LCO. Air Canada will be looking to make money on a cheaper work force, fuller planes and my guess, a standardized livery. That's just a shot in the dark, though.

ACT7
Jun 13, 2012, 8:56 PM
Harmony Airways? Oasis? There's been a couple. All startups, though, nothing with a large carrier backing it and able to shuffle passengers to it.

767s aren't as efficient, that's true. However, they're a pretty good size and have a good bang for buck when it comes to range. Most of East Asia is the perfect range for that plane.

If I were to take a guess, I'd think that instead of retiring their 767 fleet when they take delivery of their 787s, they'll "sell" them to the new LCO. Air Canada will be looking to make money on a cheaper work force, fuller planes and my guess, a standardized livery. That's just a shot in the dark, though.
Yup, Hong Kong Oasis, you're right. I could also see the 76's being shuffled over to a new LCC. Maybe throw on some winglets to make them more efficient.

sacrifice333
Jun 13, 2012, 9:04 PM
From a consumer standpoint, AC's pricing for the YVR-HKG route is somewhat bizarre.

They've chosen to basically match CX's pricing, which makes sense on the surface since they're the only two non-stop options on the route.

The price-sensitive travellers are priced-out of AC's offering, and generally will book one-stop options with Air China (PEK), or China Eastern (PVG).

So that leaves AC in direct competition for CX -- and since they aren't competing with CX on price, that pretty much only leaves competing with them on service.

In Economy, it's pretty much a toss-up, although I'd venture to guess that CX has a better brand presence overall. Nonetheless, the two products in cattle class is fairly similar.

However, in Business, AC's product (especially their soft product) is vastly inferior to CX. They are consistently either equal or above Cathay's pricing in Business, and I can't imagine many people opting for AC unless they are Star Alliance diehards.

Long story short, the case for OD passengers to fly AC YVR-HKG is fairly weak. I'm not surprised they are struggling on this route.

Except I would point out, that although CX has a lot of flights... most are not at the starting prices. They've got some sneaky computer engineers working for them that have managed to snake most booking sites into thinking all their flights are at the "entry-level price" when in fact they're actually quite a bit more expensive.

This scenario "got me" when I was trying to book a flight to BKK: $1270 economy flights became $1800+ and forced me into the arms of JAL Bus. Class for only $2500!!! :shrug:

trofirhen
Jun 13, 2012, 9:59 PM
I read in a Parisian morning paper that in China they are currently digging the ground for 60 (sixty) major new airports to be finished by 2015. That will no doubt translate into a boon for YVR, all conditions being "normal."

incognism
Jun 13, 2012, 11:32 PM
Except I would point out, that although CX has a lot of flights... most are not at the starting prices. They've got some sneaky computer engineers working for them that have managed to snake most booking sites into thinking all their flights are at the "entry-level price" when in fact they're actually quite a bit more expensive.

This scenario "got me" when I was trying to book a flight to BKK: $1270 economy flights became $1800+ and forced me into the arms of JAL Bus. Class for only $2500!!! :shrug:

Yeah, those JL discount Biz fares are a steal. YVR-NRT-XXX (virtually any major Asian airport outside Japan).

Definitely not par for the course though.

Canadian74
Jun 14, 2012, 12:16 AM
Jetstar seems to have a business class. If anything, jetstar seems to be doing well, while qantas faces stiff competition and similar rigid restrictions similar to AC. perhaps johnny aussie has more perspective.

I believe Jetstar's "Business Class" is really a Premium Economy product, not full business class.

Also, is AC's YVR-HKG service down to 5 weekly?

Yume-sama
Jun 14, 2012, 1:21 AM
I believe Jetstar's "Business Class" is really a Premium Economy product, not full business class.

Also, is AC's YVR-HKG service down to 5 weekly?

Hmm, it actually is, which is quite surprising to me!

2:45 am → 6:55 am YVR-HKG S M T W T F S Cathay Pacific 889
1:50 pm → 5:55 pm YVR-HKG S - T - T F S Air Canada 7
3:00 pm → 7:00 pm YVR-HKG S M T W T F S Cathay Pacific 837

ACT7
Jun 14, 2012, 1:41 AM
Hmm, it actually is, which is quite surprising to me!

2:45 am → 6:55 am YVR-HKG S M T W T F S Cathay Pacific 889
1:50 pm → 5:55 pm YVR-HKG S - T - T F S Air Canada 7
3:00 pm → 7:00 pm YVR-HKG S M T W T F S Cathay Pacific 837
Then that's consistent with what the article was talking about, that AC is struggling on international routes out of YVR.

Also, regarding the 60 new Chinese airports, I don't know if that automatically translates into explosive growth for YVR. You have to remember that internal travel in China is what's really exploding, even though there is substantial more international travel than there used to be. PEK is now the second busiest airport in the world but the VAST majority is domestic travel. With a 1.3 billion person market, it's no surprise.

Valley_Refugee
Jun 14, 2012, 4:48 AM
China also has a penchant for building absolutely useless infrastructure.

Hourglass
Jun 14, 2012, 5:34 AM
China also has a penchant for building absolutely useless infrastructure.

Care to elaborate?

Not saying you're wrong, but wrt to aviation, without exception, every single domestic flight I've ever been on in China (and there have been many) has been completely full, so the need to build that many new airports isn't exactly a stretch. Remember, even tier 2 cities in China like Changsha still have 7 million people, which is almost 3x Metro Vancouver's population.

ACT7
Jun 14, 2012, 1:36 PM
Care to elaborate?

Not saying you're wrong, but wrt to aviation, without exception, every single domestic flight I've ever been on in China (and there have been many) has been completely full, so the need to build that many new airports isn't exactly a stretch. Remember, even tier 2 cities in China like Changsha still have 7 million people, which is almost 3x Metro Vancouver's population.

I think you're both right. There is probably a need for larger (and more) airports within China but lets not forget about China creating the illusion of wealth and employment by building unnecessary infrastructure. Ghost cities come to mind immediately. Anyway, I know this is not a political thread about China, so moving on...

st7860
Jun 14, 2012, 2:29 PM
Care to elaborate?

Not saying you're wrong, but wrt to aviation, without exception, every single domestic flight I've ever been on in China (and there have been many) has been completely full, so the need to build that many new airports isn't exactly a stretch. Remember, even tier 2 cities in China like Changsha still have 7 million people, which is almost 3x Metro Vancouver's population.

Exactly. China isn't into building infrastructure thatn isn't needed. You could walk around Vancouver and say there are ghost areas too! Furthermore there's a high demand for expat pilots in China.

Gordon
Jun 14, 2012, 3:45 PM
The 767s in a single class configuration could be profitable because passenger capacity is up to 350 depending on the model.

twoNeurons
Jun 14, 2012, 4:29 PM
The 767s in a single class configuration could be profitable because passenger capacity is up to 350 depending on the model.

And given that they will probably restrict passengers to 1 piece of luggage and charge for snacks etc. (flights to Japan currently allow 2 pieces @ 23kg each) they will be able to have a full load with luggage and save some money on fuel that way as well.

Valley_Refugee
Jun 14, 2012, 6:04 PM
Exactly. China isn't into building infrastructure thatn isn't needed.

The capital waste in China on things like roads and stadiums is well-documented. Maybe not for airports...my comment was flippant, I know.

In other more related news, Air Transat's in some trouble:

http://business.financialpost.com/2012/06/14/transat-troubles-deepen-as-loss-exceeds-estimates/

deasine
Jun 14, 2012, 8:13 PM
Hold on, I think it's worth looking into the purpose of Air Canada starting a LCC. As per the article, they've been toying with the idea of a LCC for a while. They've looked at Europe/TATL operations, but are now moving against it because there are some signs of a challenging operation. They've looked at the Caribbean, but again, there are questions of whether a business can be sustainable, and whether or not the North America<->Central America<->South America has enough traffic to warrant another carrier. And now they are looking at the TPAC routes?

AC isn't dumb: they know there are many challenges in operating a LCC. Their Tango project was a failure, and it ended being a booking class fare on legacy AC routes. Cost is a huge issue, and cost for long-haul flights are even more prevalent. Oasis' failure in YVR and LHR markets were due to fuel costs. AirAsia X's failure in the direct CDG and LGW routes from their KUL hub wasn't because there wasn't enough traffic, but it again came down to costs. Looking outside of LCCs, why aren't there any profitable routes between North America and India? Again, costs, not traffic. AA consistently had an 85% load factor between ORD and DEL but still had to cancel their route. There are methods of reducing costs, and reducing the labour costs is one of them, as well as plane innovations, simplification of cabin products, etc. But there is only so much you can do unfortunately.

I don't see this as an introduction of another carrier; I see this more as a method to dismantle the "legacies" of AC to allow a more cost-effective operation. Unfortunately, all legacy carriers are now struggling to operate and compete with newer and more efficient carriers (such as WS for example), all of which don't have the "legacies" of a legacy carrier. The article cites QF and Jetstar, and it's true, QF has been finding ways to dismantle the carrier into smaller ones: starting with Jetstar (which has become really successful, hence its expansion), toying the idea with a "premium carrier" based in SIN or KUL, and most recently, dividing its international and domestic operations into two businesses now. While many complain about AC paying executives top dollar while the unions are struggling to negotiate for a "fair" compensation, their bonuses don't really compare to the costs of business operation. And I think this is accurate with AC especially with the last quarterly results where the carrier still isn't making money despite having a high average load factor on its routes. In the longer term, the options are either the carrier dismantling the "legacies," or it folds.

Canadian74
Jun 15, 2012, 4:36 PM
Hmm, it actually is, which is quite surprising to me!

2:45 am → 6:55 am YVR-HKG S M T W T F S Cathay Pacific 889
1:50 pm → 5:55 pm YVR-HKG S - T - T F S Air Canada 7
3:00 pm → 7:00 pm YVR-HKG S M T W T F S Cathay Pacific 837


It looks like AC has a shortage of pilots/77Ws. Hence the reduction in frequency. It seems it is upto 6x weekly now and will be daily from next week.
There was a similar trend at YYC-LHR which is also a 77W route. It was down to 6x weekly for a week or two but now is back to daily.

craneSpotter
Jun 15, 2012, 5:47 PM
Hello...again...

As Europe’s allure dims, Transat turns eyes east

BRENT JANG - TRANSPORTATION REPORTER
The Globe and Mail
Published Thursday, Jun. 14 2012

Amid uncertainty in the European tourism market, Transat sees potential in its Vancouver operations for launching trips to Asia.

“I just sent a couple of people in Asia a few months ago, and a few weeks ago again, to look at that market and to talk to our colleagues in Asian countries,” Mr. Eustache said. “Yes, it’s something that we should look at.”

It’s something Air Canada chief executive officer Calin Rovinescu is also considering; he recently shifted focus to Asia from Europe for a proposed Vancouver-based discount airline...

...Robert Kokonis, president of airline consulting firm AirTrav Inc., said Transat has secured a temporary freeze on wages from its 1,800 flight attendants and 430 pilots, but boosting revenue is crucial, too. “Transat must diversify its revenue base by looking for non-traditional markets such as the Asia-Pacific,” Mr. Kokonis said. “A Vancouver base for Asia-Pacific operations would provide much more operational flexibility for Transat.”

Article - http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/as-europes-allure-dims-transat-turns-eyes-east/article4258239/

Yume-sama
Jun 15, 2012, 6:29 PM
It looks like AC has a shortage of pilots/77Ws. Hence the reduction in frequency. It seems it is upto 6x weekly now and will be daily from next week.
There was a similar trend at YYC-LHR which is also a 77W route. It was down to 6x weekly for a week or two but now is back to daily.

:( That is somewhat troublesome. I'm supposed to go to HK in October, so hopefully they figure it out by then. I wonder what they do with people who were booked? For October they claim to have daily service.

Canadian74
Jun 15, 2012, 7:26 PM
:( That is somewhat troublesome. I'm supposed to go to HK in October, so hopefully they figure it out by then. I wonder what they do with people who were booked? For October they claim to have daily service.

Air Canada already knew that they couldn't operate the flights beforehand due to a shortage of a/c, thus these flights never showed up in the system so no bookings were made.

Yume-sama
Jun 15, 2012, 7:44 PM
Oh. Nice of them to plan for labor shortages 10 months in advance.

twoNeurons
Jun 15, 2012, 10:31 PM
Hello...again...

As Europe’s allure dims, Transat turns eyes east

BRENT JANG - TRANSPORTATION REPORTER
The Globe and Mail
Published Thursday, Jun. 14 2012



Article - http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/as-europes-allure-dims-transat-turns-eyes-east/article4258239/

Whoa... charter flights to Asia? That's interesting.

I don't see this as an introduction of another carrier; I see this more as a method to dismantle the "legacies" of AC to allow a more cost-effective operation. Unfortunately, all legacy carriers are now struggling to operate and compete with newer and more efficient carriers (such as WS for example), all of which don't have the "legacies" of a legacy carrier.

Completely agree with this point. Air Canada is looking for a way to relieve itself of its cruft. If I were a recent hire at Air Canada I'd be slightly concerned. It's likely that Air Canada is trying to compete with itself before another carrier starts to challenge it with a low-cost alternative. For example, Air Transat's recent announcement about focusing on the east.

It's a good business move, but as the LCC business increases, I wouldn't be surprised if Air Canada started reduced volume and laying off employees.

SpongeG
Jun 23, 2012, 6:02 AM
i finally got to use YVR as a passenger (hadn't done so since 2002) and wow its so nice i can see why now why people rave about it - i had to transfer in edmonton and it looks nice but its so small and the washrooms are so bad compared to YVR, it feels cramped and they don't seem to have any overseas flights at all - the day i was there they only had three US bound flights going out - one to Las vegas, one to denver and one to san francisco - all the rest other than one to vancover and one to toronto were basically within alberta - like ft mcmurray, calgary, grande prarie...

trofirhen
Jun 23, 2012, 8:31 AM
i finally got to use YVR as a passenger (hadn't done so since 2002) and wow its so nice i can see why now why people rave about it - i had to transfer in edmonton and it looks nice but its so small and the washrooms are so bad compared to YVR, it feels cramped and they don't seem to have any overseas flights at all - the day i was there they only had three US bound flights going out - one to Las vegas, one to denver and one to san francisco - all the rest other than one to vancover and one to toronto were basically within alberta - like ft mcmurray, calgary, grande prarie...
:previous:

Out of curiosity, was the new, locally trumpeted (in Edmonton) new extension, the South Terminal, open? Any feedback on that?

I was there years and years ago, and the terminal had a large, rather empty, sad feeling to it, without the bustle and activity one expects in even an airport that size. It seemed overbuilt and underused, all painted in a sicky federal green color.

And if you think that's underserved, Winnipeg has seasonal holiday service to Mexico, California, and so on, sceduled flights to Minneapolis, Denver, and Chigago, but nothing to San Fran or LA, and NOTHING overseas. I surmise size of air market governs all that, naturally, though.

craneSpotter
Jun 23, 2012, 6:19 PM
i finally got to use YVR as a passenger (hadn't done so since 2002) and wow its so nice i can see why now why people rave about it - i had to transfer in edmonton and it looks nice but its so small and the washrooms are so bad compared to YVR, it feels cramped and they don't seem to have any overseas flights at all - the day i was there they only had three US bound flights going out - one to Las vegas, one to denver and one to san francisco - all the rest other than one to vancover and one to toronto were basically within alberta - like ft mcmurray, calgary, grande prarie...

I would consider YVR probably the nicest in NA at the moment.

As far as YEG, I found that when flying with Westjet it doesn't come off that great as the north part of the terminal is dated. However, I have found the newer south terminal area quite nice and modern - flying with AC/United. I haven't seen the newest YEG expansion which I believe functions as the US departures area?? Which I think it opened this year?? I know YEG has service to Chicago, Houston, Seattle, Phoenix and LA, in addition to the ones you mentioned - but of course it is not nearly as busy or International as YVR.

Well, in reality YVR is by a wide margin, the main International airport for Western Canada.

craneSpotter
Jun 23, 2012, 6:23 PM
First Flight from Inland China to North America Lands at YVR

Sichuan Airlines Arrives in Vancouver from Chengdu via Shenyang

RICHMOND, BC, June 22, 2012 /CNW

Vancouver Airport Authority today welcomed the first direct flight linking North America and China's interior province of Sichuan. The inaugural flight of Sichuan Airlines' service between Vancouver International Airport (YVR) and Chengdu, via Shenyang, marks the start of the airline's thrice-weekly service.

The world's second largest economy, China is a key market for British Columbia and Canada. Demand for air travel from China continues to grow and last year, the number of airline seats available between Mainland China and YVR increased by 30 per cent. As of the end of May, more than half a million passengers travelled through YVR from the Asia Pacific region in 2012 (actually the number is almost 1 million)...

..."The new Chengdu - Shenyang - Vancouver service will enable Vancouver International Airport to extend its reach into China's domestic network," said Lan Xinguo, Chairman of Sichuan Airlines. "Furthermore, it will accelerate deep and multi-scope cooperation between Canada and China's western and northeast regions in agriculture, technology, commerce, trade, tourism and education."

Sichuan province, served by Sichuan Airlines' domestic network, is home to 100 million people - approximately three times the population of Canada. An important economic connection for British Columbia, the region is a hub for trade, tourism and commerce.

link (http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/998243/first-flight-from-inland-china-to-north-america-lands-at-yvr)

SpongeG
Jun 23, 2012, 6:29 PM
:previous:

Out of curiosity, was the new, locally trumpeted (in Edmonton) new extension, the South Terminal, open? Any feedback on that?

I was there years and years ago, and the terminal had a large, rather empty, sad feeling to it, without the bustle and activity one expects in even an airport that size. It seemed overbuilt and underused, all painted in a sicky federal green color.

And if you think that's underserved, Winnipeg has seasonal holiday service to Mexico, California, and so on, sceduled flights to Minneapolis, Denver, and Chigago, but nothing to San Fran or LA, and NOTHING overseas. I surmise size of air market governs all that, naturally, though.

its nice but small and crammed with restaurants and bars, and still some work going on, the outside has a lot of work to go, the middle area is nice and airy, it was busy around there, and a couple gates, the us area from what i saw was dead, i didn't get to look too much i had to go back to my gate for my boarding pass

did international flights stop or get dropped? when i was a kid i remember flying out of yeg to london, we also used to pick up-drop off relatives travelling to canada from south africa at the airport via their arrivals from london

Valley_Refugee
Jun 23, 2012, 7:20 PM
Air Canada still flies to London daily.

trofirhen
Jun 23, 2012, 10:03 PM
Air Canada still flies to London daily.
:previous:

From Edmonton, yes. Winnipeg, no.

Klazu
Jun 24, 2012, 12:24 AM
i finally got to use YVR as a passenger (hadn't done so since 2002) and wow its so nice i can see why now why people rave about it - i had to transfer in edmonton and it looks nice but its so small and the washrooms are so bad compared to YVR, it feels cramped and they don't seem to have any overseas flights at all - the day i was there they only had three US bound flights going out - one to Las vegas, one to denver and one to san francisco - all the rest other than one to vancover and one to toronto were basically within alberta - like ft mcmurray, calgary, grande prarie...

I definitely like YVR. I have flown through it only three times so far, but I find it spacious, non-crowded, modern and "livingroom-like". Free wifi is great, services are good and plenty and the transportation options are great.

I think people on this forum are sometimes unnecessary harsh on YVR. Sure, the pricing of parking and some flights is bad compared to airports across the border, but I still think YVR has a very good offering for the price. I don't bother driving across the border unless the difference is several hundred bucks.

giallo
Jun 24, 2012, 5:09 AM
First Flight from Inland China to North America Lands at YVR

Sichuan Airlines Arrives in Vancouver from Chengdu via Shenyang

RICHMOND, BC, June 22, 2012 /CNW



link (http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/998243/first-flight-from-inland-china-to-north-america-lands-at-yvr)

Awesome news, but man, that would be one loud, messy flight. There's a reason I avoid Chinese airlines for international flights. I've to great lengths not to take AirChina of China Eastern to Vancouver. I'll even do a connecting flight adding a few hours on to my overall trip time.

trofirhen
Jun 24, 2012, 12:19 PM
Awesome news, but man, that would be one loud, messy flight. There's a reason I avoid Chinese airlines for international flights. I've to great lengths not to take AirChina of China Eastern to Vancouver. I'll even do a connecting flight adding a few hours on to my overall trip time.
:previous:

Why would that be one loud, messy flight? (or shouldn't I ask .........) :cool:

Hourglass
Jun 24, 2012, 1:49 PM
:previous:

Why would that be one loud, messy flight? (or shouldn't I ask .........) :cool:

Let's just say it's the culture and leave it like that. I hate traveling on Chinese airlines -- doesn't matter if it is domestic or international flights. The experience can be ... chaotic.

If you want to get a taste, hang around a Mainland Chinese tour group (or you can also get a pretty good sense visiting the Dior or LV flagship store in Paris...) :haha:

giallo
Jun 24, 2012, 2:32 PM
:previous:

Why would that be one loud, messy flight? (or shouldn't I ask .........) :cool:

I think Hourglass came up with the best adjective; chaotic.

If you ever get a chance, fly from Taiwan to HK on EVA Air or Cathay Pacific. Switch airlines in HK to China Eastern, Spring Airlines or any of the countless other regional carriers that fly from HK to Shanghai. It's like going from Harvard to kindergarten in a single connection. The difference in behaviour can be shocking/annoying/infuriating.

Hourglass
Jun 24, 2012, 3:16 PM
I think Hourglass came up with the best adjective; chaotic.

If you ever get a chance, fly from Taiwan to HK on EVA Air or Cathay Pacific. Switch airlines in HK to China Eastern, Spring Airlines or any of the countless other regional carriers that fly from HK to Shanghai. It's like going from Harvard to kindergarten in a single connection. The difference in behaviour can be shocking/annoying/infuriating.

Hey giallo, it can be pretty interesting on Hong Kong Express / Hong Kong Airlines as well (caters to a lot of Mainland tour groups). One time I was on Hong Kong Airlines flying from Changsha to HK and sat beside a woman who couldn't figure out how to fasten her seat belt. She solved the problem by tying it into a knot. I ended up showing her how to buckle up. Probably her first time flying... ;)

giallo
Jun 24, 2012, 3:45 PM
^Sounds like we could trade some war stories.

I just flew to HK with Hong Kong Airlines last week. It was my first time flying with them. Besides the 3 1/2 hour delay, it wasn't too bad. My flight to KL from Guangzhou with AirAsia, on the other hand, was a total nightmare.

I'm off to Singapore on Tuesday with Singapore Airlines. It'll be a nice reminder of how good flying can be.

LeftCoaster
Jun 25, 2012, 3:06 PM
Singapore airlines is a real treat. As for chaotic flights, try flying Saigon to Hanoi on Jet airways. I have never been on such an interesting flight, I think at least 25% of the plane had never flown before.

YVR is certinaly the best major airport in North America, I have never been to one that even comes close to the level of service, quality of infrastructure or just general aesthetics. It still lags behind the world leaders but I really didn't think it's too far behind some of the best I've ever been to such as Changi, Schiphol or Hong Kong.

trofirhen
Jun 25, 2012, 4:33 PM
^Sounds like we could trade some war stories.

I just flew to HK with Hong Kong Airlines last week. It was my first time flying with them. Besides the 3 1/2 hour delay, it wasn't too bad. My flight to KL from Guangzhou with AirAsia, on the other hand, was a total nightmare.

I'm off to Singapore on Tuesday with Singapore Airlines. It'll be a nice reminder of how good flying can be.
:previous:

Wouldn't it be great to have Singapore Airlines back in Vancouver?

artvandelay
Jun 25, 2012, 7:14 PM
Singapore airlines is a real treat. As for chaotic flights, try flying Saigon to Hanoi on Jet airways. I have never been on such an interesting flight, I think at least 25% of the plane had never flown before.

Sounds like the flights I've taken in India. I always feel sorry for the flight attendants on those Airlines - it's like they're full time baby sitters. AirAsia is also a gongshow, they consistently have the slowest checkin counters that I've ever experienced.

YVR is certinaly the best major airport in North America, I have never been to one that even comes close to the level of service, quality of infrastructure or just general aesthetics. It still lags behind the world leaders but I really didn't think it's too far behind some of the best I've ever been to such as Changi, Schiphol or Hong Kong.

Yeah, YVR is one of the best in North America for sure. Although I prefer the airy design of T1 at Pearson, YVR is a better overall airport.

Johnny Aussie
Jun 28, 2012, 2:49 AM
An OK month.

Overall up 2.7% (YTD up 4.5%)

Domestic up 2.2% (YTD up 4.3%)

Transborder up 2.6% (YTD up 4.8%) - surprised as capacity was down slightly in May. Capacity increase in June - Sept though.

Asia Pacific up 5.8% (YTD up 6.0%)

Europe up 5.5% (YTD up 3.5%) - Virgin Atlantic started last week of May

Misc Int'l down 14.0% (YTD up 1.5%)

Johnny Aussie
Jun 28, 2012, 3:03 AM
Been so busy and away so much have barely even had time to read anything.

From what I have seen over the last few weeks:

AC's reduction of HKG is their normal seasonal reduction - so don't see the alarm? They are back to daily now.

TS and it's possible foray to Asia. If anyone remembers Maple Fun Tours wants to start Japan (specifically KIX and NGO to YVR) and they were looking for a partner to actually fly the routes. Perhaps this will eventuate a tie-up between the two. In the meantime looks like JAL has beat them to the punch with their additional charter services to YVR and ANC in conjunction with tourism Alaska.

As for AC's LCC based out of YVR. Don't know what to make of that. People make a lot of comparisons to QF and JQ in Australia. Without a doubt QF is struggling downunder and have a huge mess between management and unions etc. They are moving a fair amount of flying to JQ. JQ's "business class" is a bit more than premium economy but more like the older style J class. Definitely bigger seats and leg room but forget the lie flats. Just DO NOT take away the SYD-YVR flight from mainline... my preferred flight from Australia to Canada. Only made the trip in Y (one-way) once but would prefer that over a crammed LCC plane. They would lose me as a customer.

I have flown on virtually all the major Asian carriers. Including CA and MU domestically and internationally. Don't quite understand the comments about noisy/messy etc. They certainly aren't the top of my list but don't see it as bad as others make it out to be.

Just did 8 SQ trips 4 long haul and 4 short haul - mix of J and Y. They are definitely NOT the same as they were 5 years ago... sorry. Still my preferred carrier to SE Asia / Asia / Europe from here but if they weren't in Star Alliance would be less loyal I think now. Off to Sydney tomorrow! Breathe.

mezzanine
Jun 28, 2012, 3:59 AM
^thanks for the perspective on LCC and jetstar's experience.


Misc Int'l down 14.0% (YTD up 1.5%)

what are these flights? mexico/charters to the carribean?

Johnny Aussie
Jun 28, 2012, 4:35 AM
^
I would think so re Misc International.

AC and QF are facing tough challenges but then who isn't. However, at least QF's domestic operation is still a huge cash cow.

Qantas is in the news daily right now. The media of course is painting a picture that it is just falling apart at the seams. The reality is far from that. But they are facing so many challenges right now they probably don't even know where to start.

I do NOT want to start a massive Emirates discussion.. but the latest involves the Middle East carriers. It only seems just now that QF is running scared at the prospect of Emirates, Etihad and Qatar just killing the Aussie market. Emirates/Qatar/Etihad have a combined 9 flights a week to Canada.

To Australia, the combined airlines are getting close to 20 DAILY flights (too lazy to look up right now) Into Melbourne alone they have 5 daily flights to the Middle East (not incl flights to NZ). You can just see the Qantas route map shrinking every time they boost one of their routes. And they ain't finished yet. I am all for free enterprise but now Australia is now thinking "uh oh" what's going on here. Like it should be a surprise? Gee... we are losing thousands of passengers on our international routes... oh now I get it.

Perhaps a bit of regulation is a good thing. I'll bet both Canada and Australia are feeling a bit better off having some decent regulations in the banking industry while the rest of the world's seem to be crumbling. Just a thought.

Hourglass
Jun 28, 2012, 6:07 AM
^

This is a philosophical difference that has been debated on this thread before. I think there is a fair bit of difference between open skies and the more restrictive regulatory regime in place in Canada. For instance, I don't think a 7x weekly flight between YVR and DXB is going to destroy the market -- contrary to what AC says. I'd argue QF is in a world of hurt not only because of competition, but a toxic labor environment, incompetent management and questionable fleet composition -- and yes, there are some similarities between QF and AC here.

AC needs to get its costs under control, including the ridiculous bonuses being paid to management. The LCC model may be a chance for a new start (although I remain unconvinced by the long-haul LCC model). They're not going to start in YYZ because they would cannibalize their lucrative business traffic. YYC has Westjet and is a smaller market. That leaves YVR.

Re China, take enough domestic flights and you'll understand... ;) From a woman trying to set off some sort of incendiary device on a flight from Urumqi to Shanghai to another memorable flight from Changsha to Beijing where we sat with doors open in 35c heat for 8 hours while the flight was delayed, then canceled, then uncanceled, then delayed again (resulting in a near riot by irate passengers) -- I could not make this stuff up. And then there is the regular mad rush and jostling to board the plane, etc etc. Air travel in China is much safer than it was a decade ago, but it is far from a pleasant experience.

Johnny Aussie
Jun 28, 2012, 7:28 AM
^

I hear you. And that is why I did say don't want to re-hash the EK debate. But, my point is, it is just only now QF is running to figure out why its int'l operation has just tanked in the last 5 years. The writing was on the wall. They are now allegedly lobbying to now restrict these carriers from further access. Of course we are brainwashed to believe that AC hasn't lobbied the fed gov't against EK (mainly). It is far from open skies here but perhaps the Canadian Gov't forsaw only what we are really witnessing now here. And quite frankly we have a lot to lose here. QF is in serious doo doo. QF and JQ have their fingers in so many pies around the region it is getting hard to figure it out. Yes, you are right many similarities to AC with labour, management etc... Perhaps the Canadian Gov't can give a bit more to EK, but only now is Australia scratching its head and definitely this is a serious cause for concern.

I have been on a few domestic flights in China, but only on 3 airlines. Obviously not as many as you if you live there. Just probably more of the exceptions. I have never even seen anything remotely like that. Those stories sounds just like some I have heard on various other airlines around the world. I am lucky enough to have not had the pleasure!

Hourglass
Jun 28, 2012, 2:01 PM
^
Yeah, I was spending 2-3 weeks of every month in China at one point flying domestically to various cities. Not something to look forward to -- I was always glad when I was on a Dragonair flight back to HKG!

Re Qantas, it really does look like they're flailing around for a viable strategy. I'm hearing SYD-DFW is doing very well for them, but you're right, their international business in general is taking a beating. And starting a Jetstar JV in HKG? Against CX? Not sure how that's going to work out for them. Either way, some lessons for AC here for sure.

deasine
Jun 28, 2012, 10:16 PM
AC needs to get its costs under control, including the ridiculous bonuses being paid to management. The LCC model may be a chance for a new start (although I remain unconvinced by the long-haul LCC model). They're not going to start in YYZ because they would cannibalize their lucrative business traffic. YYC has Westjet and is a smaller market. That leaves YVR.

Honestly, while I don't agree with the bonuses the AC management is receiving, the bonuses aren't contributing to the main root of the financial problems with AC. AC is operating at a loss not because it's not generating traffic (they have relatively high average load factor), not because of bonuses, but because of labour, and most damaging, because of pensions (via CAPA Analysis (http://www.centreforaviation.com/analysis/air-canada-vows-bankruptcy-is-not-an-option-as-its-losses-continue-to-mount-73571)). It's a bit challenging to tackle the issue of pensions unless it starts at a clean slate, but I don't think that is really an option. Labour is really one of the only options AC can potentially figure out. As I said before, I don't think AC is interested in creating a LCC as much as the idea of using a subsidiary arm to reduce its costs and offset its labour while continuing to deliver and expand traffic and capacity.

One has to realize that the lines between LCC and traditional carrier business models are continuing to be blurred as newer carriers without the "legacy luggage" continue to challenge older carriers in the industry. Many traditional carriers are taking note and developing and implementing similar business practices: the idea of charging for luggage (as AC already does for transcontinental flights), the idea of charging for entertainment (US carriers are notorious for this), the idea of charging for food (almost all carriers with the exception of Asian ones), all these came fundamentally from LCCs.

The challenges going on at Qantas is the most interesting I find, but note their problems are quite a bit different than AC. The Australian government is a lot more open to the idea of Gulf Carriers, which resulted in a lot more competition. Historically, QF really only had SQ and CX to deal with. Pretty much overnight, EK, EY, QR sprung from nowhere, carriers in China, with impossibly low CASK costs, began expanding aggressively (note CZ is now the largest carrier in Asia), not to forget, homegrown competition from VA/DJ. And interestingly, VA/DJ partnered with NZ, SQ, and EY to expand internationally, leading to an even stronger competition. This allows VA to expand internationally without essentially added costs and allows it to more focus on domestic Australia. At this time, QF relies on its partner BA for its European traffic, but that just cannot work especially since the LHR hub is not as geographically convenient as its competitors such as SQ, EK, EY, and QR. QF's most recent development with AA flying to DFW, diverting routes from SFO, is a sign that its finally tapping into the power of carrier-to-carrier partnerships to expand its traffic. The dynamics in Australia are really different than what is going on in Canada, but at the same time, like you said, I think there are a lot of learning opportunities carriers around the world can take note of.

Hourglass
Jun 28, 2012, 11:32 PM
Of course management bonuses aren't in and of themselves going to sink Air Canada -- but it is symptomatic of some pretty fundamental issues. Faced with AC's current financial problems and sinking share price (or should I say rock-bottom share price?), do you really think Rovinescu should have been paid (or more to the point, accepted) a $5 million retention bonus in March? No wonder there is labor discontent...

trofirhen
Jun 29, 2012, 3:51 AM
^

This is a philosophical difference that has been debated on this thread before. I think there is a fair bit of difference between open skies and the more restrictive regulatory regime in place in Canada. For instance, I don't think a 7x weekly flight between YVR and DXB is going to destroy the market -- contrary to what AC says.
:previous:
Yes, but that would snuff the upcoming Air Canada 787s to India, over the pole.... and what about what's "good for "Canada." (read Toronto) ..... and what about our children? :cool:

twoNeurons
Jun 29, 2012, 4:15 AM
Of course management bonuses aren't in and of themselves going to sink Air Canada -- but it is symptomatic of some pretty fundamental issues. Faced with AC's current financial problems and sinking share price (or should I say rock-bottom share price?), do you really think Rovinescu should have been paid (or more to the point, accepted) a $5 million retention bonus in March? No wonder there is labor discontent...

Very True. Leadership should start at the top... and no average employee is going to take a wage freeze/cut lying down if leadership (or lack of) isn't setting the example. It's a disgusting example, in my opinion, of a lack of dedication to the company. These executives are just as replaceable, so you have to question what they bring to the table if they fail at leadership.

Take JAL's recent rebuild... it seems to be going really well. I haven't looked into it, but knowing Japanese culture and general management style, it wouldn't surprise me if the organizational pay scale in general is more linear than exponential. Also, I bet management set the example and took one for the team with pay cuts or bonuses.

While it's true that Japan has a different culture, in the end they're still the same race (human) and we all have a pretty strong sense of justice and fairness built into us, no matter where we were born. I think those are the lessons we want to learn from... not the lessons of what not to do.

SpongeG
Jun 29, 2012, 4:49 AM
YVR named most efficient airport in Canada

Calgary and Edmonton come in second and third

Richard Dettman/Denise Wong Jun 28, 2012 11:41:52 AM

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) - A study of the world's airports finds that Vancouver's is the most efficient in Canada.

The study involved aviation academics in several countries and was led by the UBC's Tae Oum at the Sauder School of Business.

...

The World's Most Efficient International Airports

North America - More than 15 million annual passengers

1. Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport
2. Charlotte Douglas International Airport
3. Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport

North America - Less than 15 million annual passengers

1. Raleigh-Durham International Airport
2. Richmond International Airports
3. Will Rogers World Airport

Canada overall

1. Vancouver International Airport
2. Calgary International Airport
3. Edmonton International Airport

Europe - More than 15 million annual passengers

1. Copenhagen Kastrup International Airport
2. Oslo Airport Gardermoen
3. Zurich Airport

Europe - Less than 15 million annual passengers

1. Genève Aéroport
2. Nice Côte d'Azur Airport
3. Edinburgh Airport

Asia Overall

1. Seoul-Gimpo International Airport
2. Incheon International Airport
3. Hong Kong International Airport

Oceania Overall

1. Sydney Airport
2. Queenstown Airport
3. Dunedin International Airport

...

http://www.news1130.com/news/local/article/377959--yvr-named-most-efficient-airport-in-canada

SpongeG
Jun 29, 2012, 4:50 AM
Bellingham booming from Canadian border rush

Last month, the Vancouver-based Browns Restaurant Group expanded its U.S. operation when it opened a Scotty Browns franchise outlet just past the security gates at the Washington State airport. The opening, the second outlet for the company in the border city, comes after a March report by the Canadian Airports Council that noted Vancouver International Airport was losing 950,000 passengers annually to Seattle and Bellingham airports.

The study determined Canadians accounted for 62% of passengers passing through Bellingham – a figure in line with the patronage at the Scotty Browns airport location, according to corporate spokesman Mark Majewski.

“I get (Vancouverites) texting me and emailing people all the time saying, ‘Oh, wow. You’re in Bellingham at the airport. That’s so cool.’”

The restaurant opening is just one part of the airport’s ongoing expansion.

Daniel Zenk, the facility’s aviation director, notes the airport has experienced 25-30% year-over-year growth in each of the last six years.

“Honestly, without … Canadians using the airport, Bellingham wouldn’t be as viable and wouldn’t be growing as fast as we are.”

...

http://vancouver.24hrs.ca/News/local/2012/06/21/19906391.html

Bellingham airport undergoes huge expansion to accommodate Canadian flyers


BY ZOE MCKNIGHT, VANCOUVER SUN JUNE 28, 2012 9:10 PM

Bellingham International Airport will soon be three times the size it was three years ago, thanks to a boom in Canadian travellers.

A $17-million, 60,000-square-foot addition to the main terminal, ticketing and baggage claim area began in April, and a 20,000-square-foot renovation of the passenger gates was completed last year.

By the time the newest renovations are finished in 2013, the airport will have tripled in size.

In 2001, about 125,000 people flew out of Bellingham airport. This year, the airport could see as many as 625,000.

Aviation director Daniel Zenk estimated there’s been 25-per-cent growth per year for the last six years.

That rapid growth is thanks to travellers from the Lower Mainland who are willing to drive the 80 kilometres to save hundreds of dollars on plane tickets.

“There’s been this massive increase in traffic, and the vast majority of it has come from the Lower Mainland,” said Ken Oplinger, president of the Bellingham Chamber of Commerce. “When I meet with my colleagues up there and they talk about Abbotsford being the second airport for the Lower Mainland, I don’t even laugh. I just say they’re wrong, it’s Bellingham.”

“The expansion we’re going through is in very large part because there is so much Canadian traffic that has found this airport and the fact that it’s so much less expensive to fly out of here to destinations in the U.S.,” Oplinger said. He added that passengers from the American northwest frequently use YVR, Canada’s second-largest airport serving 17 million passengers per year, for flights to Asia and Europe.

...

http://www.vancouversun.com/travel/Bellingham+airport+undergoes+huge+expansion+accommodate+Canadian+flyers/6858093/story.html

SpongeG
Jun 29, 2012, 4:59 AM
Millions of Canadians flying out of U.S. airports to save money

950,000 Canadian passengers use Bellingham and Seattle airports instead of YVR each year

By TRACY SHERLOCK, Vancouver Sun June 18, 2012

...

Canadian airports are losing 4.5 million Canadian passengers to airports just across the line, which has the senate committee report calling for the establishment of a National Air Travel Strategy, and an end to the practice of charging airports ground rent.

Senator Dennis Dawson is chair of the senate committee that wrote the report, and he says Canada is losing $1 billion a year in air travel alone from Canadians who choose to travel out of U.S. airports.

He says it’s quite natural for people to look for the best deal, and that a family of four could save as much as $1,000 by flying out of the United States because the Americans subsidize their airports while the Canadians charge them rent and expect users to cover costs like security and air traffic control.

“The Government of Canada should stop treating airports as a source of public revenue,” Dawson said.

People flying out of Canadian airports often pay 60 and 75 per cent above the airline’s base fare to cover taxes and charges, compared to between 10 and 18 per cent in the U.S., the senate report found.

...

Read more: http://www.vancouversun.com/business/2035/Millions+Canadians+flying+airports+save+money/6797282/story.html#ixzz1z9iJoEYB

st7860
Jun 29, 2012, 6:18 PM
http://www.vancouversun.com/travel/Canadian+flyers+boost+Bellingham+airport+million+expansion/6858093/story.html
mac1978
11:04 AM on 6/29/2012
Get the unions out of airports and airlines if you want to see competitive rates. Labour is always the latgest expense to any business and when youre paying a guy $29/hr to chuck bags its actually surprising they companies arent already bankrupt

Sealy57
9:54 AM on 6/29/2012
Tony Gugliotta of YVR is quoted as saying, "We try to keep fares as low as possible, but there are certain costs we can't compete on." Really? What about the constantly-increasing Airport Improvement Fee, or the 27% Parking Tax Levy? Or how about the hourly parking fees? I recently picked up some people flying into YVR and the parking fee for 70 minutes was $12.50.

Gordon
Jul 3, 2012, 3:09 PM
The AIF had not been increased for 3 or 4 years .

Weekly and monthly parking are fairly reasonably priced $44.95+tax & $99.00+ TAX CUPON ON YVR.CA

sacrifice333
Jul 3, 2012, 7:50 PM
The AIF had not been increased for 3 or 4 years .

Weekly and monthly parking are fairly reasonably priced $44.95+tax & $99.00+ TAX CUPON ON YVR.CA

Significant savings with that coupon!!! :tup:

deasine
Jul 3, 2012, 11:40 PM
Very True. Leadership should start at the top... and no average employee is going to take a wage freeze/cut lying down if leadership (or lack of) isn't setting the example. It's a disgusting example, in my opinion, of a lack of dedication to the company. These executives are just as replaceable, so you have to question what they bring to the table if they fail at leadership.

I'm not defending the management by any means, and I guess this is entirely subjective, but whether or not they get bonuses I don't think it will improve service on AC... just saying.

The entire airline really needs to be flipped inside out.

Take JAL's recent rebuild... it seems to be going really well. I haven't looked into it, but knowing Japanese culture and general management style, it wouldn't surprise me if the organizational pay scale in general is more linear than exponential. Also, I bet management set the example and took one for the team with pay cuts or bonuses.

While it's true that Japan has a different culture, in the end they're still the same race (human) and we all have a pretty strong sense of justice and fairness built into us, no matter where we were born. I think those are the lessons we want to learn from... not the lessons of what not to do.

JAL's restructure is probably one of the most amazing in the business. From numbers in the red to high profitability, even reaching the highest operating margins in the industry. Still, despite their profits, their traffic numbers is still nose diving down. And they are in for a lot more challenges: their venture with Jetstar forming Jetstar Japan will undoubtedly affect Japan Airlines Domestic and potentially affect the International traffic. Don't forget competition from other LCCs, AirAsia Japan and Peach.

mezzanine
Jul 4, 2012, 3:54 PM
Very True. Leadership should start at the top... and no average employee is going to take a wage freeze/cut lying down if leadership (or lack of) isn't setting the example. It's a disgusting example, in my opinion, of a lack of dedication to the company. These executives are just as replaceable, so you have to question what they bring to the table if they fail at leadership.


I'm no fan of excessive executive pay, but I would also agree that it's a minor issues in AC's problems.

Unfortunately, IMO the issue is similar to GM prior to its restructuring - defined-benefit pension liabilities. Something will give, or AC will declare bankrupcy (again).


The company’s pension solvency deficit ballooned in the past year to $4.4-billion, from $2.2-billion – a bad situation made worse by today’s low interest rate environment. If the Montreal-based airline’s defined pension plans were wound up today, Air Canada would be billions short of meeting its obligations to current and future pensioners.

And, unfortunately, it’s not at all clear when, or if, the airline will meet its commitment to workers. The airline hasn’t turned a profit since 2007, and with more retirees than employees (29,000 versus 26,000), the deficit is a millstone that grows heavier every year.


http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/air-canadas-retirement-fund-is-in-for-a-bumpy-ride/article4384503/

SFUVancouver
Jul 4, 2012, 4:30 PM
I have what is possibly a naive question. How do pension plans come to be underfunded?

Is it a case of the plans' return on investment failing to match projections?
Is it a case of the business failing to contribute at a rate that will match requirements?
Is it a case of the business deliberately deferring contributions in order to make a quarterly/annual balance sheet look better? If so, why isn't this factored into GAAP reporting?

sacrifice333
Jul 4, 2012, 4:43 PM
I have what is possibly a naive question. How do pension plans come to be underfunded?

Is it a case of the plans' return on investment failing to match projections?
Is it a case of the business failing to contribute at a rate that will match requirements?
Is it a case of the business deliberately deferring contributions in order to make a quarterly/annual balance sheet look better? If so, why isn't this factored into GAAP reporting?

Can be a lot of reasons...

Underfunding
Underperforming {vs. projections}
People Outliving Projections
Smaller Workforce Funding Pot {vs. Numbers of Past Workers Eligible for Pensions}

mezzanine
Jul 4, 2012, 7:32 PM
^i'd add on to that:

-AC's move from a highly regulated environment to one with less regulation.
-the effects of the baby boom.
-recent stock upheavals (late 1990s, 2008) and ongoing low interest rates x ~ 10 yrs
- a probable policy on all sides to get smooth labour relations now for a defined-benefit pension to be paid later. To be fair, it seems this was common among other companies and the public sector in the 1960, 70s.

also remember that these are "defined benefit" pensions where the amount retriees gets paid is predetermined by agreements made long ago, regardless of the current economc condiion or the return of the pension's investments. Compare this to say, an RRSP, a defined contruibution plan (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Defined_contribution_plan).

Vanzunator
Jul 6, 2012, 6:34 PM
It seems for about 6 weeks in W12 Lufthansa will reduce its daily Frankfurt-Vancouver service to 5 weekly (08JAN13 – 13FEB13). In recent years, we only had a capacity reduction from A340-600 to A340-300 for winter months and this is a bit surprising considering the already limited capacity between YVR and Europe.

It seems Toronto and Montreal are also getting similar or even bigger reductions:
http://airlineroute.net/2012/07/02/lh-w12update3/

st7860
Jul 6, 2012, 8:06 PM
It makes sense if there's less people flying to Europe from Canada.

DarkVenegance
Jul 6, 2012, 8:07 PM
It seems Toronto and Montreal are also getting similar or even bigger reductions:
http://airlineroute.net/2012/07/02/lh-w12update3/
Pure speculation, but seeing the amount of flight reductions in the same timeframe, LH might use this slower travel period to refit the fleet to the new business class seats.

SpongeG
Jul 7, 2012, 5:23 AM
Lufthansa has cut flights to many cities because of a flight curfew in the city of frankfurt as well as reducing operating costs - cape town lost its frankfurt flights because of this

Frankfurt - A ban on night flights at Frankfurt has caused Lufthansa to withdraw its service to Cape Town this winter, the German national airline said on Wednesday.

Imposed eight months ago, a strict ban on flights after 23:00 leaves no leeway when it comes to weather or medical delays and has resulted in over 10 000 passengers being stranded overnight in Frankfurt since the ban took effect, Lufthansa manager Kay Kratky said.

The night flight ban is an extra headache for Lufthansa, which is currently cutting costs to battle low-cost competition and rising fuel prices.

"Cape Town will no longer be served from Frankfurt this winter because we can't leave our passengers stranded," said Kratky, in charge of flight operations at Lufthansa's passenger airlines division.

He cited the example of a plane due to fly to Johannesburg being forced to turn round on the Franfurt tarmac last Thursday night after a problem loading a container.

Instead, the Cape Town flight will be shifted to Munich, which itself has been dealt a blow to expansion plans after a proposed third runway was voted down by residents.

http://www.news24.com/Travel/Flights/Lufthansa-cancels-Cape-Town-flight-20120704-2

Bigtime
Jul 7, 2012, 1:11 PM
Does the Frankfurt curfew affect the YVR flight? Without looking I would guess no, assuming the arrival and departure times out of FRA would be very similar to the former YYC service.

deasine
Jul 8, 2012, 7:22 AM
Does the Frankfurt curfew affect the YVR flight? Without looking I would guess no, assuming the arrival and departure times out of FRA would be very similar to the former YYC service.

Not necessarily, but Lufthansa is in the midst of changing their strategy. Lufthansa's planned reduction comes eat a time where the company is flipping themselves inside out to better compete with other carriers.

Frankfurt's curfew (which is incredibly restrictive) is really bothering Lufthansa and I wouldn't be surprised if they start moving many of their flights over to Munich and Berlin (when Tegal closes). They've already been starting, and for good reason really.

whatnext
Jul 8, 2012, 2:51 PM
The AIF had not been increased for 3 or 4 years .

So? It's till too high and a knock on YVR's competitiveness. I also question how its spent. Do visitors remember all the pretty trees and flowers on Grant McConachie Way, or do they remember the bone-rattling condition of its pavement?

st7860
Jul 8, 2012, 2:59 PM
The WIFI in the non-secure area of the arrival hall is really really bad.

casper
Jul 8, 2012, 9:38 PM
So? It's till too high and a knock on YVR's competitiveness. I also question how its spent. Do visitors remember all the pretty trees and flowers on Grant McConachie Way, or do they remember the bone-rattling condition of its pavement?

In comparison to most other Canadian Airports it is average.

Link to Airport fees from Airports Air Canada uses: http://www.aircanada.com/shared/en/common/flights/pop_surcharge.html

That said the entire concept of an Airport Improvement Fee is silly. The airport is charging the airline rent and fees for using the building, if the airport needs more money it should rase those; if the airport is getting to greedy the airline has the leverage to negotiate.

Having an AIF fee is smoke and mirrors to make it look like a government imposed tax. The Airline can blame someone else for its cost and does not have to pressure its sub-supplier (the airport) to be competitive.

Gordon
Jul 9, 2012, 4:17 AM
YVRAA has frozen the fees it charges the airlines for the use of the facilities at 2010 till 2015 levels. The rough pavement on Grant MacLonachie way is their responsibleity the should fix it. The legislation the regulates the airpot authorities could be changed to allow the sled of Bonds like the u.S airports
do when they need to expand.

Hourglass
Jul 9, 2012, 5:23 AM
So? It's till too high and a knock on YVR's competitiveness.

Hardly. In the context of the way commercial aviation works in Canada, other factors other than the AIF act as a drag on YVR's competitiveness. YVR pays the equivalent of 12% of its gross revenues to the federal government as ground rent. Then let's talk about the various fuel, security and other taxes and surcharges and taxes added onto the cost of a plane ticket. No wonder people go down to BLI to fly. No ground rents there. Fuel is cheaper. Airport infrastructure development is subsidized. Not what I'd call a level playing field.

The Canadian government needs to let the aviation sector compete -- instead of regarding it as a cash cow. In fact, the Senate recently published a report on aviation. The title says it all: The Future of Air Travel in Canada: Toll Booth or Spark Plug: http://www.parl.gc.ca/Content/SEN/Committee/411/TRCM/DPK-Air/home-e.htm

Gordon
Jul 9, 2012, 2:21 PM
The largest single tax item on a trans-boarder ticket is $60 charge from the U.S. Custom & Boarder Services

ground rents.

I can see there being a nominal rent but 12% of gross revenues is excessive considering that YVR is in control of all infrastructure on Sea Island.

If the airport was still under federal control we would have an inferior airport.

bils
Jul 19, 2012, 5:23 PM
this story starting to pop up in local richmond newspapers too:

http://www.theprovince.com/life/fashion-beauty/Richmond+council+concerned+about+airport+mega+mall+impact+traffic/6954518/story.html

phesto
Jul 19, 2012, 5:38 PM
this story starting to pop up in local richmond newspapers too:

http://www.theprovince.com/life/fashion-beauty/Richmond+council+concerned+about+airport+mega+mall+impact+traffic/6954518/story.html

That councilor is claiming ignorance regarding the YVR outlet mall which has been known publicly for almost two years? I'm embarrassed for him.

Johnny Aussie
Jul 25, 2012, 9:51 AM
According to a travel publication in Australia, AC increasing YVR-SYD to 10 weekly for the peak winter season. I am a bit surprised actually but good to see it appears to be doing very well. I'll be on it again next week!

Now, too bad those extra flights aren't to Melbourne!

http://www.travelweekly.com.au/travel-today/news/air-canada-ramps-up-ski-services

Edit: flight sched details on airlineroute.net new flights AC35/AC36

http://airlineroute.net/2012/07/25/ac-w12update4

mezzanine
Jul 25, 2012, 4:52 PM
^ good to hear, but it would be nice to see a qantas tail fin at YVR...

Gordon
Jul 25, 2012, 8:07 PM
When did China Eastern increase flights to yvr

trofirhen
Jul 26, 2012, 1:50 AM
^ good to hear, but it would be nice to see a qantas tail fin at YVR...
:previous:

There used to be, for many years, going back to the 1960s. At one point, for a short time, Qantas even had a YVR-Tahiti scheduled nonstop ... hard to believe, but true.

Valley_Refugee
Jul 26, 2012, 7:23 AM
Qantas is highly unlikely. They are in deep trouble and cutting long-haul routes. AC and Air New Zealand (with a change in Auckland) probably have the market well-covered. Plus, Qantas has leveraged American and WestJet codeshares/interlines from LAX for Vancouver service.

trofirhen
Jul 26, 2012, 11:58 AM
Qantas is highly unlikely. They are in deep trouble and cutting long-haul routes. AC and Air New Zealand (with a change in Auckland) probably have the market well-covered. Plus, Qantas has leveraged American and WestJet codeshares/interlines from LAX for Vancouver service.
:previous:

Yes, I know Qantas is in deep touble, and won't be coming back to YVR. Interestingly, I read (I forget where) that now even Australia is feeling the "siphoning-off" of customers by Emirates, and to a lesser exent, Qatar Airways, both of which have acccess to Australia's major cities.

I used to think it would be great to have Emirates into YVR (they got SEA-TAC, anyway), but know I realize how parasitic EK is, like a giant squid, sucking passsenger traffic from North American, European, and Oceanic countries.

Lets hope those 787s for service to India arrive ASAP, and as for an "Eastern" transit point, Istanbul would be ideal for Vancouver (into the Middle East, Africa ....)... although that's a LONG way off, if ever.

s211
Jul 30, 2012, 8:34 PM
Qantas is highly unlikely. They are in deep trouble and cutting long-haul routes. AC and Air New Zealand (with a change in Auckland) probably have the market well-covered. Plus, Qantas has leveraged American and WestJet codeshares/interlines from LAX for Vancouver service.

Had a friend do the YVR-LAX run, and was told that 2/3 of the seats were connecting to Qantas flights.

deasine
Jul 31, 2012, 12:06 AM
I used to think it would be great to have Emirates into YVR (they got SEA-TAC, anyway), but know I realize how parasitic EK is, like a giant squid, sucking passsenger traffic from North American, European, and Oceanic countries.


What's wrong with this? Transit passengers is the core of their business strategy.

mezzanine
Jul 31, 2012, 2:45 AM
Hmmm...

Air Canada discount line set for takeoff
BRENT JANG - TRANSPORTATION REPORTER
The Globe and Mail
Published Monday, Jul. 30 2012, 6:21 PM EDT


An arbitrator has selected Air Canada’s final offer to forge a new contract for pilots, clearing the way for management’s proposal to launch an international discount airline.
...
The discount leisure carrier is to be based in Vancouver. Air Canada is planning an ownership structure that would keep its stake at less than 50 per cent, while giving minority stakes to a foreign airline and a financial player yet to be confirmed.


http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/air-canada-discount-line-set-for-takeoff/article4450393/

YVR Bruce
Jul 31, 2012, 4:17 AM
What's wrong with this? Transit passengers is the core of their business strategy.

Canada's strategy toward Gulf carriers seems to me to be an unusually enlightened one. It confounds me why anyone, much less this site moderator, if that is the case - would be so keen to outsource such a major national service (CDN global air travel).

Take a look at the impact on BA and Qantas. They have been hit v badly by EK with national employment impacts. BA and QF people no doubt look on with envy to Canada's policy re EK.

I operate a company within the full reach of asian competition. Perhaps Deasine might volunteer his/her livelihood. With the stated attitude, it would be comforting to learn that those in favour of EK at YVR have full exposure to such one-sided trade.

deasine
Jul 31, 2012, 5:17 AM
Canada's strategy toward Gulf carriers seems to me to be an unusually enlightened one. It confounds me why anyone, much less this site moderator, if that is the case - would be so keen to outsource such a major national service (CDN global air travel).

Take a look at the impact on BA and Qantas. They have been hit v badly by EK with national employment impacts. BA and QF people no doubt look on with envy to Canada's policy re EK.

I operate a company within the full reach of asian competition. Perhaps Deasine might volunteer his/her livelihood. With the stated attitude, it would be comforting to learn that those in favour of EK at YVR have full exposure to such one-sided trade.

I just commented that their business strategy is based on transit passengers. Secondly, my positions do not affect my ability to moderate. Moderators are clearly allowed to discuss in affairs but only need to step into a dispute when needed. This is the position that all moderators at SSP:Vancouver have been using.

The impact the gulf state carriers will make to Canadian carriers cannot be compared to the impact they have made to European carriers, not unless they gain fifth freedom access at European airports. For Europe, I don't really need to explain, you can't even book a ticket to Europe from the airlines website.

For routes to the pacific, transpacific routes or routes over the North Pole are shorter from every point in the country:


2 segment path: 10990 mi
YVR (49°11'38"N 123°11'04"W) DXB (25°15'10"N 55°21'52"E) 1.4° (N) 7306 mi
DXB (25°15'10"N 55°21'52"E) HKG (22°18'32"N 113°54'53"E) 80.1° (E) 3684 mi

Direct path:
YVR (49°11'38"N 123°11'04"W) HKG (22°18'32"N 113°54'53"E) 309.1° (NW) 6392 mi



2 segment path: 10583 mi
YYZ (43°40'38"N 79°37'50"W) DXB (25°15'10"N 55°21'52"E) 40.4° (NE) 6899 mi
DXB (25°15'10"N 55°21'52"E) HKG (22°18'32"N 113°54'53"E) 80.1° (E) 3684 mi

Direct Path:
YYZ (43°40'38"N 79°37'50"W) HKG (22°18'32"N 113°54'53"E) 346.4° (N) 7810 mi


The only markets Gulf State carriers can potentially affect are routes around the gulf and routes to India. Even then, it really doesn't greatly affect Canadian carriers, because most of the business on these routes are on European carriers and Asian carriers. From the west, all connection points are pretty equal. From the East, Europe still retains the advantage of geography, and if Finnair were a bit more aggressive in its routes, it would have the best position.


2 segment path: 8723 mi
YVR (49°11'38"N 123°11'04"W) HKG (22°18'32"N 113°54'53"E) 309.1° (NW) 6392 mi
HKG (22°18'32"N 113°54'53"E) DEL (28°34'07"N 77°06'44"E) 288.4° (W) 2331 mi
2 segment path: 8914 mi
YVR (49°11'38"N 123°11'04"W) LHR (51°28'39"N 0°27'41"W) 34.4° (NE) 4723 mi
LHR (51°28'39"N 0°27'41"W) DEL (28°34'07"N 77°06'44"E) 80.0° (E) 4191 mi
2 segment path: 8665 mi
YVR (49°11'38"N 123°11'04"W) DXB (25°15'10"N 55°21'52"E) 1.4° (N) 7306 mi
DXB (25°15'10"N 55°21'52"E) DEL (28°34'07"N 77°06'44"E) 75.5° (E) 1360 mi


2 segment path: 7747 mi
YYZ (43°40'38"N 79°37'50"W) LHR (51°28'39"N 0°27'41"W) 51.6° (NE) 3556 mi
LHR (51°28'39"N 0°27'41"W) DEL (28°34'07"N 77°06'44"E) 80.0° (E) 4191 mi
2 segment path: 8259 mi
YYZ (43°40'38"N 79°37'50"W) DXB (25°15'10"N 55°21'52"E) 40.4° (NE) 6899 mi
DXB (25°15'10"N 55°21'52"E) DEL (28°34'07"N 77°06'44"E) 75.5° (E) 1360 mi

I can't see how EK would have a major impact on business at YVR.

I find it pretty interesting that you brought up the BA and QF case. I've done a piece on this, and without a doubt the Kangaroo-route has been greatly affected by competition from gulf states. But it really isn't as simple as that; there are many other factors:

Every carrier is affected by fuel prices and fuel prices do put tremendous stress on the viability of a long-haul route. BA and QF are not making any profits on their long-haul routes between Australia and Europe. BA's premium cabin ticket prices to Australia are sometimes comparable to some of their routes to Asia and the United States: but notice it takes a lot less fuel to fly to those destinations.
Geographic positioning of QF's "Kangaroo Route" partner BA is not strategically placed and has no advantage to its competitors. For passengers connecting to BA to other destinations in Europe other than LHR, they would essentially be overflying to reach their final destination (keep in mind all routes to Europe connect at SIN, or BKK/HKG, so that makes a total of 2 connections). Not counting Gulf-state carriers, QF and BAs partnership have also been challenged by other carriers such as SQ and CX. Moving forward, this is only going to get worse with more Chinese carriers stepping into the picture. In fact, CZ cleverly brands their Europe to Australia route via Guangzhou as the "Canton Route." CAPA has done an analysis and finds carriers such as CZ are pushing airfare prices so low that European carriers can't possibly match or else they would be loosing profit on each sale. They've even got some of the traffic between Australia and the United States because of their low prices, even though it's a much longer route.
Australia has really opened the door to gulf-state carriers, not only by granting them more slots and allowing them to increase capacity, but also allowing Australian airports as connection cities to New Zealand. Essentially, this increases competition not only for routes between Europe and Australia, but within their backyards. EK has fifth freedom routes at MEL, SYD, and BNE.

At the end of the day, there's a fixed pie businesses need to understand. There's most likely not going to be a larger pie anytime soon. The more carriers come in, the more share of the pie they are going to get, and the less of a pie you can have. If you can't compete with other carriers, you get a smaller share. Plain and simple.

mezzanine
Jul 31, 2012, 6:24 AM
Canada's strategy toward Gulf carriers seems to me to be an unusually enlightened one. It confounds me why anyone, much less this site moderator, if that is the case - would be so keen to outsource such a major national service (CDN global air travel).


I disagree. the feds blocking gulf carriers from more access to YVR limits choices for people who fly internationally.

YYCguys
Jul 31, 2012, 3:06 PM
I recently used YVR after not been through there is almost a year! What is going on in the A/B wing? Lots of construction. I seem to remember hearing that there was an expansion going to happen, but earlier this month, my take on it is that this looks like just renovation to the interior and not a footprint change.

I guess I'm too lazy to look back into this thread too far to find out. Maybe someone who frequents this thread can direct me to the appropriate pages or website links with details, timelines, and/or renderings?

trofirhen
Jul 31, 2012, 4:19 PM
I recently used YVR after not been through there is almost a year! What is going on in the A/B wing? Lots of construction. I seem to remember hearing that there was an expansion going to happen, but earlier this month, my take on it is that this looks like just renovation to the interior and not a footprint change.

I guess I'm too lazy to look back into this thread too far to find out. Maybe someone who frequents this thread can direct me to the appropriate pages or website links with details, timelines, and/or renderings?
:previous:
having spoken with someone in YVR Sales, it seems that Pier B (and A) are being revamped and modernized, with West Jet as the main tenant. (apparently, this has been in the planning stages for several years already)

Johnny Aussie
Jul 31, 2012, 8:29 PM
:previous:
having spoken with someone in YVR Sales, it seems that Pier B (and A) are being revamped and modernized, with West Jet as the main tenant. (apparently, this has been in the planning stages for several years already)

Greetings from the Fairmont Hotel. I just flew in from SYD this morning and from what I can see definitely a lot going on on the A/B piers. Looks like they are building out of pier B closest the the terminal so a definite footprint change. But the info on the website is quite vague as to what is actually happening.
Looks like it will be a decent improvement !

YYCguys
Jul 31, 2012, 9:39 PM
Post 3950 has a pic of part of what is to come with the Pier A/B expansion, and in speaking with an airline employee working in that area of the airport, that particular rendering is in line with what he told me. He told me that there will be swing gates in the A/B area, enabling Westjet, which will be the primary tenant of the both the A and B piers, to have seamless transfers domestically and internationally. Whether this is actually executed as planned remains to be seen, of course.

trofirhen
Aug 1, 2012, 12:52 AM
I disagree. the feds blocking gulf carriers from more access to YVR limits choices for people who fly internationally.
:previous:
Given the storm that Emirates seems to churn up, I'd very much like to see Qatar Airways, or even Turkish Airlines into YVR. We need something more than what we have regarding overseas connection points.

casper
Aug 2, 2012, 1:58 AM
I disagree. the feds blocking gulf carriers from more access to YVR limits choices for people who fly internationally.

We have the experiment going on south of the boarder. A year or two after the Emirates enters the market, we will see if it has an impact on the European carriers. Seattle has already lost SAS.

YVR Bruce
Aug 2, 2012, 2:58 AM
I can't see how EK would have a major impact on business at YVR. ..... Plain and simple.[/QUOTE]


That analysis does not square with that of EK, who clearly want into the YYZ and YVR markets. Indeed, the Dubai goverment's analysis too; the latter seemed happy to play hardball with Canada at the national and NATO / military level trying to force their way in.

Greater China is now heading toward 10 heavies a day from YVR, and it would seem that EK and perhaps SQ were calculating that India may be worth the equiv. of say 5/day in 10 yrs time. 25% of that would be a big hub-feeder. For what local and national commercial benefit?

deasine
Aug 2, 2012, 9:44 AM
That analysis does not square with that of EK, who clearly want into the YYZ and YVR markets. Indeed, the Dubai goverment's analysis too; the latter seemed happy to play hardball with Canada at the national and NATO / military level trying to force their way in.

Greater China is now heading toward 10 heavies a day from YVR, and it would seem that EK and perhaps SQ were calculating that India may be worth the equiv. of say 5/day in 10 yrs time. 25% of that would be a big hub-feeder. For what local and national commercial benefit?

EK may, on the surface, want YVR but I can tell you YYZ is where the money is. And flying an A380 is a clear indication their YYZ-DXB is profiting. While I don't have concrete evidence, I don't think the SEA-DXB route is their most popular route right now, where some note an average of perhaps 5 J-Class revenue passengers. Aside from transporting passengers in the aviation business, transporting cargo is also an important factor but this is something I'm not in the position to analyze about.

Sure there might be no real local/national commercial benefit for passengers bound for the Indian market from Canada/North America. What will benefit is the added jobs that will result as these airlines hire for a YVR base, or sign on business with a contracting operator that will need to hire more people to service these airlines. But this perhaps doesn't amount to anything substantial in a national sense. However, the Canadian share of the Indian market has been low to begin with, let me explain:

Air Canada does not have any flights to India and relies on codeshares from Lufthansa via Frankfurt, or Jet Airways via Brussels.
In the West (YVR), there are no direct routes operated by AC to any of Air Canada's partners related to the Indian travel market. All of this market is taken over by Asian Carriers (Cathay Pacific with many flights to India from HKG, and China Airlines, also with many daily connections via TPE base), or by European Carriers (British Airways via LHR, or Lufthansa via FRA). Where AC will benefit is if passengers book an AC codeshare operated by Lufthansa because of Lufthansa-ACs sharing profits scheme.
In the East, it's again back to Lufthansa and Jet Airways. Jet Airways has fifth-freedom rights at its Brussels "hub" and thus operates to YYZ. This codeshare relationship with Jet Airways is really limited and has not expanded to flights to Asia. If AC can do this, and capture part of the North America-Indian travel market via an Asian city, where AC operates one leg, and Jet Ariways operates the other, this is when they can begin increasing their presence. But until then, there is ot much real revenue benefit for AC. Again, it goes back to the Lufthansa relationship.

Bigtime
Aug 2, 2012, 12:48 PM
EK may, on the surface, want YVR but I can tell you YYZ is where the money is. And flying an A380 is a clear indication their YYZ-DXB is profiting.

Well, yes and no to the bolded part. EK wants daily into YYZ, that is their ultimate goal, all this other talk of serving YVR and YYC is just to get daily rights into YYZ. When the government has called this bluff (and offered rights to fly into both airports with no additional YYZ they have rejected it).

They operate the A388 on the route because with only 3x weekly service they have to make the most of it, and that is why they deploy their largest aircraft there. To get the most seats (first, biz, and economy) into YYZ every week.