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LO 044 Sep 16, 2022 8:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by whatnext (Post 9733320)
LOL, how to win friends and influence people in your employer's home town.

Thing is, he's not totally wrong. From PWA to today, Calgary has never been a huge market like YYZ or YVR. And he's absolutely right about taking WS back to its roots. Why Gregg Saretsky sought to abandon the proven success model of Southwest in favour of becoming Canadian Airlines V.2 is anybody's guess. But good luck to "returning to a low cost model" particularly in a time of inflation.

I feel like WestJet was never a low cost model. OK maybe at the very beginning when they only flew the YVR-YEG-YYC triangle. They became AC 2.0 or CP 2.0 in terms of pricing but they tried to pretend they were different. They became even less different with pricing for checked bags, seat fess more flights/more issues with delays cancellation.

Southwest does not charge for baggage. It also has 330 million potential customers. WestJet has 38 million potential customers. More Canadians fly international relative to Americans which gives Southwest and advantage over WestJet in terms of national flights. There is nothing about Southwest in WestJet except the 737.

I've read some recent posts about everyone saying WestJet will strengthen their YYC hub but how? Flair and Swoop are entrenched at YEG. Lynx is chomping at the bits at YYC although yes they are very small. I feel like YVR is AC's turf just as much as it is WS's. YYC-FRA/LHR on AC is as competitive as YYC-AMS/LHR on WS. How much more organic growth can you get out of Western Canada to new destinations at a reasonable price? Is there disposable income out west? In Alberta yes, In BC not as much, in Saskatchewan and Manitoba I don't know. How many more Las Vegas, Puerto Vallarta or Cancun flights can you offer? And double the price of Swoop and Flair.

Dominion301 Sep 16, 2022 9:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by whatnext (Post 9732327)
Huge lithium ion batteries on planes, what could go wrong?:runaway:

If compared EVs to ICE vehicles about one tenth as much as the very rare engine fires on Jet-A aircraft. I would step on an electric aircraft in a heartbeat. I hope this sees the light of day. AC has a gap to fill below 50 seats since the DH1's retirement.

Dominion301 Sep 16, 2022 9:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BenYOW (Post 9732833)
WestJet has announced its latest series of route cuts: Halifax to Ottawa, Montreal, and St. John's. With the previous announcement of the termination of Halifax to Sydney, I believe this is the end of all WestJet Encore operations in Halifax.

CBC News

Suspended to me = they're going summer seasonal on 737s only on these routes, although YUL-YHZ I think will only come back if the YHZ-transatlantic stuff stays next summer.

3 DH4s a week this winter on YHZ-YOW made zero sense whatsoever - literally what's the point. Obviously they're sticking it out for the XMAS/New Year's rush before the suspension. Nevertheless flanker brand swoop will still be there as it is to go up against the three other carriers on the route.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Denscity (Post 9732924)
Man Halifax just can't catch a break!

LOL, Ottawa would give anything to catch Halifax's "breaks". Even if YHZ-transatlantic is gone on WS, YHZ still has LHR and not just one but two European carriers to FRA vs ZERO still at YOW. I have a feeling YOW's not getting transatlantic back until AC has 321XLRs on property. AC clearly have plans to eventually bring these back as they have deliberately not used the traditional YOW-LHR and YOW-FRA flight numbers. YHZ even somehow still has AA seasonally to not just PHL, but BOS and DCA too and domestically has Lynx as well.

casper Sep 16, 2022 9:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LO 044 (Post 9733359)
I feel like WestJet was never a low cost model. OK maybe at the very beginning when they only flew the YVR-YEG-YYC triangle. They became AC 2.0 or CP 2.0 in terms of pricing but they tried to pretend they were different. They became even less different with pricing for checked bags, seat fess more flights/more issues with delays cancellation.

Southwest does not charge for baggage. It also has 330 million potential customers. WestJet has 38 million potential customers. More Canadians fly international relative to Americans which gives Southwest and advantage over WestJet in terms of national flights. There is nothing about Southwest in WestJet except the 737.

I've read some recent posts about everyone saying WestJet will strengthen their YYC hub but how? Flair and Swoop are entrenched at YEG. Lynx is chomping at the bits at YYC although yes they are very small. I feel like YVR is AC's turf just as much as it is WS's. YYC-FRA/LHR on AC is as competitive as YYC-AMS/LHR on WS. How much more organic growth can you get out of Western Canada to new destinations at a reasonable price? Is there disposable income out west? In Alberta yes, In BC not as much, in Saskatchewan and Manitoba I don't know. How many more Las Vegas, Puerto Vallarta or Cancun flights can you offer? And double the price of Swoop and Flair.

I think it comes down to the network. Being based in YYJ and before that YXE these low cost point-to-point airlines (Flair, Swoop, Lynx etc.) are mostly useless. They only work if the stars are aligned and they have a direct flight on the day and time your looking to travel. I don't think they are going to build out the infrastructure to do connections any time soon. Swoop and Flair are more useful if your based out of Vancouver or Calgary than the smaller cities.

In smaller centers for business travel the two options are Air Canada or WestJet. Delta use to fly into many of these smaller cities in Western Canada. They have pulled out for the most part, forcing you to connect on WestJet instead.

I would rather they expand under the WestJet brand, however I think we are more likely to see the new aircraft going into the other two brands.

thenoflyzone Sep 16, 2022 9:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dominion301 (Post 9733390)
If compared EVs to ICE vehicles about one tenth as much as the very rare engine fires on Jet-A aircraft. I would step on an electric aircraft in a heartbeat. I hope this sees the light of day. AC has a gap to fill below 50 seats since the DH1's retirement.

Dont forget these are hybrid aircraft. They will have engines and batteries. The range on batteries is still pretty low (200-400km), but better than nothing.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dominion301 (Post 9733397)
if the YHZ-transatlantic stuff stays next summer.

I doubt that very much. So far, nothing in the schedules for next summer.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dominion301 (Post 9733397)
LOL, Ottawa would give anything to catch Halifax's "breaks"

I was just about to write this. If there is one Canadian airport that got shafted on the international front due to COVID, it's YOW. YYT is a distant second.

whatnext Sep 16, 2022 9:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LO 044 (Post 9733359)
I feel like WestJet was never a low cost model. OK maybe at the very beginning when they only flew the YVR-YEG-YYC triangle. They became AC 2.0 or CP 2.0 in terms of pricing but they tried to pretend they were different. They became even less different with pricing for checked bags, seat fess more flights/more issues with delays cancellation.

Southwest does not charge for baggage. It also has 330 million potential customers. WestJet has 38 million potential customers. More Canadians fly international relative to Americans which gives Southwest and advantage over WestJet in terms of national flights. There is nothing about Southwest in WestJet except the 737...

The WS should have continued following the one aircraft type model and been content with being 1/10 the size of Southwest.

Base Sep 16, 2022 9:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by thenoflyzone (Post 9733401)
I was just about to write this. If there is one Canadian airport that got shafted on the international front due to COVID, it's YOW. YYT is a distant second.

Hey, YEG should at least get an honorable mention.

I am quite dismayed by this Westjet situation, it's not that I have a dislike for AC but at least having two decent network carriers in Canada domestically was nice.

I am failing at seeing how this western retrenchment ends up being positive. Perhaps the only way is if the likes of Lynx, Flair, & Jetlines all close up shop which is highly unlikely and even if they did likely someone would take their place.

I am a westerner but I understand the balance of population is in central Canada. Now hearing talks about more and more things being Swooped and Sunwinged doesn't give me much hope. I wish them well but I would like the strategy explained to me better so I can find some positives.

LO 044 Sep 16, 2022 10:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by casper (Post 9733398)
I think it comes down to the network. Being based in YYJ and before that YXE these low cost point-to-point airlines (Flair, Swoop, Lynx etc.) are mostly useless. They only work if the stars are aligned and they have a direct flight on the day and time your looking to travel. I don't think they are going to build out the infrastructure to do connections any time soon. Swoop and Flair are more useful if your based out of Vancouver or Calgary than the smaller cities.

In smaller centers for business travel the two options are Air Canada or WestJet. Delta use to fly into many of these smaller cities in Western Canada. They have pulled out for the most part, forcing you to connect on WestJet instead.

I would rather they expand under the WestJet brand, however I think we are more likely to see the new aircraft going into the other two brands.

Sure but you are talking about Canadian business travelers only. And how many of those are left after the pandemic, remote work and every David Suzuki and Leonardo DiCaprio wannabe telling you not to fly to save the world. On top of that, I would be curious if anyone on here actually believes that WestJet's business product is superior to AC's. WestJet's frequent flyer program has less lounges and redemption opportunities and less flight options especially towards eastern Canada.

So now we move to VFR, leisure and sun destinations. The prices i'm seeing are unbelievable for WS and AC for that matter but AC's primary focus is not Alberta but Ontario. I can fly to Mexico for $5,000 on AC or WS or $2,500 on Flair and Swoop with a family of 5. Which one do you think i'll pick? Well I as a financially conscious traveler will pick Flair or Swoop or AC vie Aeroplan because i've been easily been able to amass points on their program.

Flair has 20 737's and has 10 more due in 2023. Swoop has 13 737's and 3 more on order. I believe Swoop has already stated they will fly some of the WestJet/Sunwing's vacation schedules so I would be more prone to believe that Flair will have more slack in their fleet relative to Swoop. Saying that these two are not Lynx Air or Jetlines.

So WS may win out in smaller centres like you say but I believe they will have trouble "growing out" YVR, YEG and YYC.

thenoflyzone Sep 16, 2022 10:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Base (Post 9733430)
Hey, YEG should at least get an honorable mention.

YEG was able to hang onto KL to AMS. And next year will get Condor. FI might yet resume KEF as well for next year. It's totally in the realm of the possible. So all things considered, on the international non-US front, YEG is doing fine, especially compared to YOW and YYT.

What is YOW getting next year? Nada. AC has no intentions of resuming LHR or FRA anytime soon. They were also going to get LH to FRA pre-pandemic. That all seems like ancient history now.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Base (Post 9733430)

I am failing at seeing how this western retrenchment ends up being positive.

It's only positive in terms of a financial aspect. Keeping costs low, by basing most of their fleet out west. In terms of network reach, it's all negative.

casper Sep 16, 2022 10:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LO 044 (Post 9733445)
Sure but you are talking about Canadian business travelers only. And how many of those are left after the pandemic, remote work and every David Suzuki and Leonardo DiCaprio wannabe telling you not to fly to save the world. On top of that, I would be curious if anyone on here actually believes that WestJet's business product is superior to AC's. WestJet's frequent flyer program has less lounges and redemption opportunities and less flight options especially towards eastern Canada.

So now we move to VFR, leisure and sun destinations. The prices i'm seeing are unbelievable for WS and AC for that matter but AC's primary focus is not Alberta but Ontario. I can fly to Mexico for $5,000 on AC or WS or $2,500 on Flair and Swoop with a family of 5. Which one do you think i'll pick? Well I as a financially conscious traveler will pick Flair or Swoop or AC vie Aeroplan because i've been easily been able to amass points on their program.

Flair has 20 737's and has 10 more due in 2023. Swoop has 13 737's and 3 more on order. I believe Swoop has already stated they will fly some of the WestJet/Sunwing's vacation schedules so I would be more prone to believe that Flair will have more slack in their fleet relative to Swoop. Saying that these two are not Lynx Air or Jetlines.

So WS may win out in smaller centres like you say but I believe they will have trouble "growing out" YVR, YEG and YYC.

Business travel is morphing. There is less of it happening but it is still there. Being in Western Canada, the product is similar. The only cities in Western Canada where AC has a lounge and WestJet does not have a similar arrangement is Saskatchewan (Regina and Saskatoon). Aeroplan is still better than the WestJet offering. Hate to say it, given how bad Aeroplan has become. The inflight product is comparable.

Out of YYJ the only direct Mexico flights are WestJet or Swoop. Everything else is a connection on WestJet or Air Canada. Las Vegas is a connection on Air Canada, WestJet or Alaska.

Even domestically out of YYJ, last month I was in Winnipeg on Air Canada, this month it is Montreal, Toronto and Ottawa with WestJet. The Flair and Swoop options were not available on the days I wanted to travel.

I do agree with you that out of YVR, YEG and YYC the growth is going to be ULCC. For the other cities in Western Canada, a 737-800 is just the wrong aircraft do be doing point to point service. They need something smaller or to start doing connections at a hub.

hehehe Sep 17, 2022 12:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LO 044 (Post 9733359)
I feel like WestJet was never a low cost model. OK maybe at the very beginning when they only flew the YVR-YEG-YYC triangle. They became AC 2.0 or CP 2.0 in terms of pricing but they tried to pretend they were different. They became even less different with pricing for checked bags, seat fess more flights/more issues with delays cancellation.

Southwest does not charge for baggage. It also has 330 million potential customers. WestJet has 38 million potential customers. More Canadians fly international relative to Americans which gives Southwest and advantage over WestJet in terms of national flights. There is nothing about Southwest in WestJet except the 737.

I've read some recent posts about everyone saying WestJet will strengthen their YYC hub but how? Flair and Swoop are entrenched at YEG. Lynx is chomping at the bits at YYC although yes they are very small. I feel like YVR is AC's turf just as much as it is WS's. YYC-FRA/LHR on AC is as competitive as YYC-AMS/LHR on WS. How much more organic growth can you get out of Western Canada to new destinations at a reasonable price? Is there disposable income out west? In Alberta yes, In BC not as much, in Saskatchewan and Manitoba I don't know. How many more Las Vegas, Puerto Vallarta or Cancun flights can you offer? And double the price of Swoop and Flair.

Don't get me wrong you have some good points. But Lynx is hardly chomping at the bits at YYC. They're already dropping YWG from YYC and temporarily suspending YLW.

I don't know if I'd say WS will only focus on ULCC expansion so soon. We'll have to wait and see and they're still expanding out of YYC.

thewave46 Sep 17, 2022 12:38 AM

The solid second airline of Canada with good North American coverage is not a bad business proposition. Beats trying to be Canadian Airlines 2.0 and eating huge losses there by being AC’s sloppy second competitor. Or trying to undercut dodgy ULCC upstarts.

Running a solid, reliable, decent network operation was Westjet’s previous strategy. It’s not sexy, but people will pay somewhat a premium for it.

Wait until airline upstart mania peters out and then pick up that demand, but do it at a profit instead of setting investor cash on fire.

nname Sep 17, 2022 3:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LO 044 (Post 9733445)
I would be more prone to believe that Flair will have more slack in their fleet relative to Swoop. Saying that these two are not Lynx Air or Jetlines.

Checked the Dec 2022 schedule, and Flair would need 19 planes to run their schedule. All flights are run by 7M8 other than YKF.

YYZ - 5
YVR - 5 (shared with TUS)
YEG - 3
YOW - 2
YKF - 2 (738)
YXX - 2

YEG and YXX schedule have some slack, but not a lot of slacks for the other bases.

LO 044 Sep 17, 2022 5:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hehehe (Post 9733530)
But Lynx is hardly chomping at the bits at YYC. They're already dropping YWG from YYC and temporarily suspending YLW.

Fair point. Perhaps Lynx will be the first not to succeed. In one sense, Lynx is so small that WestJet probably couldn't care less what they do. But if their fleet grows, WestJet will have to take them seriously and match prices and then we'll see what happens. In theory, Flair could be the one attacking WS at YYC in 2023 when they get the rest of their frames but perhaps that is exactly why they aren't "attacking" WS at YYC. They'll build up their network and only when they are confident in a price war will they go after YYC. Should be an interesting couple of years.

With the prices of flights to US destination skyrocketing out of Alberta and the Loonie falling, it will be interesting how this winter goes on mainline carriers. I know we're looking more for a staycation based on what I see. I feel like in the east, you have so many options and US airlines flying to YUL and YYZ adds competition, the prices can't get out of hand too badly. In the west, the only competition are the low-cost carriers.

Calfan12 Sep 17, 2022 6:01 AM

Looks like WestJet Edmonton YEG - Nanaimo YCD flights from December 4 2022,for rest of this upcoming Winter season will operating 2x weekly mostly.

Its 3x weekly from October 30-December 2.

Calfan12 Sep 17, 2022 6:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hehehe (Post 9733530)
Don't get me wrong you have some good points. But Lynx is hardly chomping at the bits at YYC. They're already dropping YWG from YYC and temporarily suspending YLW.

I don't know if I'd say WS will only focus on ULCC expansion so soon. We'll have to wait and see and they're still expanding out of YYC.

Yes I think WestJet will continue to expand flight out options at Calgary YYC & their busiest WS Hub in Canada. But they will do it in a "cautious" way & play it safe.

A few months ago a Calgary based aviation analyst said WestJet's western Canada retreat is good news for YYC Airport. It still holds true, as WestJet about a week ago announced resuming YYC - Amsterdam AMS, Europe route 3x weekly on the Boeing 787 from mid November 2022

https://www.westjet.com/en-ca/news/2...s-to-amsterdam
____________________________________________________________________________________________

Rick Erickson, a Calgary-based aviation analyst, called the plan “pragmatic” and will refocus the airline on its strengths of affordability.

“I see, too, that they’re really building sort of a fortress west,” he said. “I surmise (the east) is a challenging environment for them to make progress in when there’s other low-hanging fruit across the country. And I see them being cautious like we know WestJet is and has been in the past.”

He said this strategy is great news for Calgary, specifically, and building it up further for international transborder and sunspot destination flights.

“If I’m the Calgary Airport Authority, you gotta give this plan a great big Yahoo!” said Erickson. “This is exactly what Calgary airport needs.”

https://calgaryherald.com/business/w...06f0022b0/amp/

zahav Sep 17, 2022 12:04 PM

I think WS starting Encore and Link was a smart move, it just didn't seem to work out east. But in Western Canada, they are deployed on lots of BC and Alberta routes, and are definitely holding their own. Whereas lots of routes to major centres like YUL and YYZ got chopped, they are steady or growing in smaller Western markets like Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Penticton, Comox, Cranbrook, Nanaimo, and Terrace. I think their strategy of using smaller (more appropriate aircraft) on western regional routes has been successful, and is growing their hub operations out of YVR and YYC. I know from WS staff at YVR that there is a lot of connections from those smaller centres to WS's vast transborder network at YVR, and dometic too. YYC I'd imagine even more so. I think they thought they could do it at YYZ as well, but doesn't seem to have worked. I think WS retrenching in Western Canada is just to let them regroup in a safe space, to figure out any future plans. Their strong routes in the west will let them take a breather to determine next steps without getting slaughtered on low demand routes. I mentioned in a post a few weeks ago, WS will be operating more flights from YVR than YYZ this winter, first time since 2003. YYZ at it's peak was probably close to double the flights from YVR. Just goes to show the cumiulative result of these cuts. YUL has never been a mjaor playing for WS, so they are unbothered I'm sure. The deep cuts to YHZ hurt though; for a smaller/mid-size airport to gain all of that regional and (more importantly) international frequency from Westjet, just to have it erased a couple of years later, isn't easy. I remember pre-pandemic, ASL Airlines France was going to start flights to Paris. Maybe with WS pulled out, they will try it again. I could also see Icelandair taking a shot, it seems like a pretty natural move: closer to Iceland than their other Canadian ops, a decent inbound and outbound European market that's lost it's main carrier, an airline that specializes in smaller North American destinations. Plus (if Wikipedia is accurate), they already operate cargo ops to YHZ. If I were with YHZ airport authority, I'd be courting them more than anymore.

Dominion301 Sep 17, 2022 1:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by thenoflyzone (Post 9733460)
YEG was able to hang onto KL to AMS. And next year will get Condor. FI might yet resume KEF as well for next year. It's totally in the realm of the possible. So all things considered, on the international non-US front, YEG is doing fine, especially compared to YOW and YYT.

What is YOW getting next year? Nada. AC has no intentions of resuming LHR or FRA anytime soon. They were also going to get LH to FRA pre-pandemic. That all seems like ancient history now.



It's only positive in terms of a financial aspect. Keeping costs low, by basing most of their fleet out west. In terms of network reach, it's all negative.

Yeah with KL and now having just landed DE, plus being the premier ULCC mecca YEG is doing damn fine.

YQB on the international front is now pretty damn amazing too with AF. Think about this, Quebec City has more service to London than Ottawa does. How does that make any logical sense. Even Whitehorse has infinitely more transatlantic service at present than Ottawa does. The only airport past or present that has historically had luck as bad as Ottawa does in this country is Hamilton.

I said previously I don’t think AC restarts YOW-transatlantic until the XLRs arrive. So you’re talking summer 2024 at the earliest.

vincenz0 Sep 17, 2022 4:27 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dominion301 (Post 9733782)
Yeah with KL and now having just landed DE, plus being the premier ULCC mecca YEG is doing damn fine.

YQB on the international front is now pretty damn amazing too with AF. Think about this, Quebec City has more service to London than Ottawa does. How does that make any logical sense. Even Whitehorse has infinitely more transatlantic service at present than Ottawa does. The only airport past or present that has historically had luck as bad as Ottawa does in this country is Hamilton.

I said previously I don’t think AC restarts YOW-transatlantic until the XLRs arrive. So you’re talking summer 2024 at the earliest.

Ottawa too close to Montreal; Hamilton too close to Toronto

JakeLRS Sep 17, 2022 4:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LO 044 (Post 9733659)
In theory, Flair could be the one attacking WS at YYC in 2023 when they get the rest of their frames but perhaps that is exactly why they aren't "attacking" WS at YYC. They'll build up their network and only when they are confident in a price war will they go after YYC. Should be an interesting couple of years.

Flair's brand has become increasingly known to Canadians over the past year or so, especially after the publicity they got from WS/AC attacking them for not being Canadian. They're essentially the nation's 3rd largest passenger airline connecting airports coast to coast in the country.

They plan on operating a YYC base in spring 2023 (they currently don't base any aircraft there). This will open up new potential routes to cities flair doesn't typically fly to, perhaps to more Southern Ontario airports like Windsor, London, and at a long shot, Hamilton.

Lynx is going through a phase that flair was once in, constantly email blasting "new" sales that seem to never end. "Its fall, take 50% off" "Its still summer, save 54%" etc etc. I'm not PAX expert, but as we go into the shoulder season of travel, I expect lynx will have a bit of a hard time putting bums in seats given their low brand recogniztion.


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