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Old 20th Aug 2020, 06:47
  #2481 (permalink)  
 
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Yes- maybe wait until the extension has got planning permission before too much speculation.
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Old 20th Aug 2020, 08:23
  #2482 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Albert Hall View Post
I'm afraid that I think you're completely delusional if you still think there is any prospect of easyJet opening a SOU base in any form of reasonable planning timeframe. It just isn't going to happen.

For different reasons, I also think the prospect of an AF CDG service is very limited. AF/KL have jointly looked at how best to serve regional markets and in all but the larger markets, they will not be served by both KL and AF as the presence of the other makes the viability of the other less assured. There is only so much hub feed to go around. That's why you have not seen a headlong rush by AF into the likes of Cardiff, Exeter and Southampton despite the loss of Flybe connections to CDG from all three. CWL already has KL and EXT might land one or the other, but unlikely to have both. SOU has just seen a great announcement today by KLM increasing from 1 to 2 flights per day to AMS, which is great news for the airport. No matter how much you think they should, AF are not going to piss on KLM's chips (if you'll forgive the crudity of the statement) by adding SOU-CDG.

Blind hope and optimism is lovely to see, but your posting has lashings of both which are way beyond any bounds of credibility.

[PS: ABZ has both KL and AF. AF presence at ABZ is pretty much on the basis of a corporate contract from Total which is AF's largest corporate customer worldwide and has a big operation in ABZ. Pernod Ricard also is a big AF corporate customer with a few major investments accessed through ABZ. There's a reason it's there.]
Perhaps I did not make it clear but I am obviously not talking in the short term, and in the midst of a global pandemic. Even if SOU gets to go ahead first time around, which I am quietly confident about, we are still talking 2-3 years minimum for the works to be completed and be fully operational. I think the industry is clear that they expect a return to normality in 2-3 years time, so SOU could be perfectly placed for airlines that are looking to start afresh.

I did consider the canabolisation of feed in respect of AF/KL, but they both code-shared on BEs CDG and AMS routes so clearly feed exists to both. Off the top of my head isn't KLMs feed mainly from Asia, and AFs from Africa? Either way, whoever picks up the CDG route will merely be a placeholder until EZY open a base.

It is clear from the large investment that a low cost operator is the target for SOUs future, the current regional operators are welcome, but are never going to create an operation that makes a business case for SOU in its current state, let alone once millions of pounds have been poured in. Companies do not sign off on investment without a return clearly being defined from the outset. Yes covid will play a part, but the rich catchment of Hampshire etc is the key. SOU presents a low cost operator the oportunity of operating routes at a more convenient airport without any competition (unlike at LGW which also probably costs more to operate from). Purely my opinions of course, but I suspect the following operators could be possible candidates for the low cost operator (in most likely order): -

1. EZY - their business of targeting business customers as well as the middle classes who enjoy 3-4 holidays a year is a perfect fit for SOU and its catchment.

2. Wizz air - SOU and the surrounding area has a huge eastern european population, which has been established for decades. They have just shown willingness to operate from lesser airports such as DSA, which also including some sun routes like ALC and AGP which SOU has an established market for.

3. Volotea - they of course chose SOU as their first and only UK airport. They are fairly established in Spain and Italy, and currently have a strange focus on tiny airports in France. I think its safe to say that there will be more business case of operating from SOU then there is from the likes of Caen, Brest etc (of course once the works have been done).

4. New airline - the A220 would make a perfect base for a new hybrid low cost operator targeting thinner routes that the bigger players will not touch. Look at what serial aviation entrepreneur David Neeleman is aiming to do in the states with his new airline Breeze. Of course Air Baltic are building a sizable operation around the A220. Who knows, maybe a new operator will appear on the scene.

I have excluded the likes of FR and LS for one reason, and that's because they operate the 737. I cannot see any operator that's fleet is based around the 737 ever opening a base at SOU. It is a terrible aircraft that is basically over 50 years old. Yes it has been updated but it is still a compromised design. The max issues are a clear indication of a design that has been pushed too far. Even with the runway extension it will not be able to operate from SOU without restrictions.

These are of course just my predictions, and conditional on the extension works being completed and normality returning. Of course when talking about the present state of play reality needs to set in. Being relentlessly negative though is not going to add anything to what I hope will be a healthy debate going forward. Other threads seem to enjoy this privilege.
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Old 20th Aug 2020, 08:37
  #2483 (permalink)  
 
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"Wizz have just shown a willingness to operate from lesser airports such as DSA".... Wizz have operated numerous daily flights to/from DSA for a number of years (as they do from LPL). What is new is the based aircraft at DSA. If Wizz were interested in SOU and there is the market for them that you seem to infer, they would have put 'their toe in the water' with non-based aircraft by now.
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Old 20th Aug 2020, 09:22
  #2484 (permalink)  
 
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Hehe...So the B737 (presumably you only mean the `8 ) is a "terrible aircraft" perhaps you should sit with the number crunchers at RYR & EXS as you mention both & continue that particular theme.

Presumably earlier versions of the venerable B737 are lovely a/c because they could reach TFS unrestricted from your local.

The arguments now being put forward are increasingly scattergun it appears.
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Old 20th Aug 2020, 09:36
  #2485 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Rivet Joint View Post
Even if SOU gets to go ahead first time around, which I am quietly confident about, we are still talking 2-3 years minimum for the works to be completed and be fully operational. I think the industry is clear that they expect a return to normality in 2-3 years time, so SOU could be perfectly placed for airlines that are looking to start afresh.

These are of course just my predictions, and conditional on the extension works being completed and normality returning. Of course when talking about the present state of play reality needs to set in. Being relentlessly negative though is not going to add anything to what I hope will be a healthy debate going forward. Other threads seem to enjoy this privilege.
"A return to normality in 2-3 years time" was expected earlier in the pandemic. Economic forecasts are now considerably longer. Let's have "a healthy debate" by all means. While some are accused of "being relentlessly negative" it is also true that others are optimistically OTT. EZY and WIZZ have given no indication of wishing to establish a base at SOU. With Loganair moving towards ATRs there's always a risk that the runway extension could become a white elephant. The sound advice expressed earlier on this forum is to wait 2-3 years before making such an investment. In even 6 months from now the aviation scene may be very different (in a worse sense) from now.

Last edited by Gurnard; 20th Aug 2020 at 12:40. Reason: Sorry folks for the typo. ATR indeed!
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Old 20th Aug 2020, 10:07
  #2486 (permalink)  
 
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With Loganair moving towards ATPs
God I hope not (yes I know you meant ATR's!)

Talking of ATR's - are Eastern having probs with their 2 (fairly new) ones at SOU? It seems only 1 has been flying recently, and J41's have been doing some MAN and NCL runs that I thought these were picking-up?
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Old 20th Aug 2020, 11:42
  #2487 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Wycombe View Post
God I hope not (yes I know you meant ATR's!)

Talking of ATR's - are Eastern having probs with their 2 (fairly new) ones at SOU? It seems only 1 has been flying recently, and J41's have been doing some MAN and NCL runs that I thought these were picking-up?
Suspect that is more down to load factor and cost of ownership!
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Old 20th Aug 2020, 12:01
  #2488 (permalink)  
 
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One of the ATRs did undergo some engine work recently. It's been parked up since.
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Old 20th Aug 2020, 12:53
  #2489 (permalink)  
 
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Either way, whoever picks up the CDG route will merely be a placeholder until EZY open a base.
Bonkers, just plain bonkers.
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Old 20th Aug 2020, 15:37
  #2490 (permalink)  
 
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One of the ATRs did undergo some engine work recently. It's been parked up since.
Appears to be G-IACZ which FR24 reckons has not flown since 14/08.
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Old 20th Aug 2020, 15:48
  #2491 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Albert Hall View Post
Bonkers, just plain bonkers.
I must admit I really cannot see easyjet opening a SOU base bearing in mind they are leaving SEN, STN & NCL

BHX have been trying for ages to get a base and have made some inroads with BFS, GLA, EDI, GVA & NAP with away based aircraft.
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Old 20th Aug 2020, 17:24
  #2492 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by BHX5DME View Post
I must admit I really cannot see easyjet opening a SOU base bearing in mind they are leaving SEN, STN & NCL

BHX have been trying for ages to get a base and have made some inroads with BFS, GLA, EDI, GVA & NAP with away based aircraft.
You are so right!I'm afraid Rivet Joint lives in a pre covid world,its all changed now,and we all have to accept this.SOU can jog along without the extension,which frankly will not matter over the next few years, the airport needs to attract training traffic,and possibly more liight traffic to keep afloat.Time will tell,but the days of Med destinations and indeed European routes are In afraid gone for the foreseeable future.
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Old 21st Aug 2020, 07:24
  #2493 (permalink)  
 
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Appears to be a lack of attention to detail on here. Again it appears my post has been misconstrued.

FFHKW: Wizzair cannot operate from SOU currently as the runway is too short. As I stated, my predictions that they possibly could be one of the operators to operate in the future would be conditional on the works were completed. I understand a lot of the eastern european community use Wizzair from Luton, and constantly request that they operate from SOU. Off the top of my head SOU is 1/8th polish, its a big market.

Southside Booby: It is a terrible aircraft by 2020 standards, and nearly bankrupted its manufacturer. You can only push a design so far, and Boeing shot themselves in the foot not going with a new design. Apart from the 787, their planes are ancient designs. I think there are a number of parts that have changed very little since its original iteration from the 60s. I believe the breaks for a start are very poor so no chance of it being a success at SOU. Is it a surprise that an unsophisticated aircraft works for the unsophisticated business that FR/LS target? They want cheap workhorses rather than versatile modern aircraft.

Gurnard: Yes nothing is set in stone, but I think it will not be as bad as everyone thinks. Most people have returned to normality by now, and by this time next year I bet few would think twice about going abroad for their holiday. The extension certainly would not be a white elephant, in fact it is key to securing SOUs future. Both the ATR and q400 are planned to be stretched in the future as the industry is moving away from regional aircraft. Even Embrear are considering a new turboprop but only in a larger size than currently exists. The pool of aircraft in the sub 80 seat market will diminish leaving SOU out in the cold. There is also the fact that aircraft like the 50 seat ERJ already cannot operate fully from SOU as things stand.

BHX5DME: I agree that there is no chance currently. In a few years time who knows. BHX also already has sizable bases from FR, LS and BY lets not forget. Its a complete different opportunity at SOU with no competition and potentially a more wealthy catchment.
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Old 21st Aug 2020, 07:52
  #2494 (permalink)  
 
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Rivet Joint...

BE POLITE...Because you lose or are exposed by the arguments & discussions try not be childish with user names please.
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Old 21st Aug 2020, 08:44
  #2495 (permalink)  
 
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Rivet Joint
This has to be your best yet!
Gurnard: Yes nothing is set in stone, but I think it will not be as bad as everyone thinks. Most people have returned to normality by now, and by this time next year I bet few would think twice about going abroad for their holiday.
How can anybody take your posts seriously when you give statements like above!
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Old 21st Aug 2020, 08:45
  #2496 (permalink)  
 
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[QUOTE=Rivet Joint;10866520] Most people have returned to normality by now, and by this time next year I bet few would think twice about going abroad for their holiday.

With all respect I think you are a little deluded. Going around towns and shops, entering airports, flying..... None of these environments indicate that we "have returned to normality by now" - especially if we take notice of a few face-masks being worn here and there. I also have to disagree with your prediction about "by this time next year". Listening to opinions being expressed would suggest to me that a lot of people have lost confidence and won't be going abroad for a holiday for some time. If your supposition is correct, why are economists predicting that it will take years for "normality" (i.e. pre-Covid) to return? Are they all liars or simply deluded??
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Old 21st Aug 2020, 09:51
  #2497 (permalink)  
 
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Rivet I have to agree with the others, I think you are deluded if you think easyjet will open a base, it's one thing to to positive and champion your local airport but you're starting to sound a little bit obsessed. I fly for them and I can say there's zero chance of it happening. I'm more than happy to hold my hand up if proven wrong but I'll even go as far as to say I'll eat my phone if it happens within 10 years.
Whilst the South is affluent I think you are over edging the possible demand. For easyjet to even entertain a base they'd have to have 6+ aircraft in situ to even consider it, I don't think you can fill 6+ A319/320s all day, every day to make it viable. Flybe were there for years and even the sunshine routes weren't rammed. I monitored the loads, if you can't completely fill an E195 to Malaga every 3 days you're not going to fill a 320 to Malaga once or even twice a day. All the other routes that the Q400 flew have zero chance of supporting an A320; why? Because if it did airlines would already be in SOU in abundance and the airlines would be pushing for a runway extension but they're not. BHX is a casing point, the extension to R33 was Emirates driven, the extension to SOU's runways is SOU airport driven.
You keep saying pax will come, but will they? Even if they do where are they coming from? Let's have a look, so basically the country has to travel, this could be for work, pleasure, business or whatever. Every year the number of people traveling either by bike, road, rail, boat or air is a fixed number once that year is up, so to make the maths easy let's say there were 1 billion journeys made last year.
Each airline, bus, rail, boat company, car etc will have their percentage of that pie, basically people will need a reason to travel, it could be a holiday, a business meeting, visit family, etc etc, what I'm getting at is you can't force people to travel so to grow your business you generally need to steal a piece of someone else's pie, so how is easyjet going to do that at SOU? Can they steal road or rail pax? Possibly, but very limited, can they steal boat pax? Probably not, can they steal other airline's pax? Of course they can, but where from? The only real viable place is LGW. Who's the biggest operator at LGW? Easyjet are, there is absolutely no viable reason why they'd want to steal passengers from themselves at LGW by significantly increasing their cost base by opening a multi aircraft base at SOU. You need to get over this notion that SOU is a massive golden nugget because believe it or not, airlines commercial departments will have done vastly more in-depth studies into the commercial viability of SOU than you can ever dream of, they would've done it already and they will continue to do it most likely for every "under served" regional airport as part of a growth strategy.. The sooner you wake up to the fact that you don't know best I think the calmer your life will be regarding SOU. It could tick along very nicely but it'll never be a major player.
Don't even get me started about your 737 analogy.

Last edited by Reversethrustset; 21st Aug 2020 at 11:41. Reason: Spelling
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Old 21st Aug 2020, 10:18
  #2498 (permalink)  
 
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Reversethrustset....well composed post and a good answer
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Old 21st Aug 2020, 10:28
  #2499 (permalink)  
 
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Most people have returned to normality by now
You have several hundred thousand people still on furlough
Major businesses with offices closed until at least the New Year if not permanently
Most companies involved in employee consultations and cuts
Unemployment rising by the day

all of which have direct impacts on demand for air travel. Rivet Joint, you must be living on a different planet to most of us. If there's room for more, let me know because it sounds a hell of a lot better than the planet the rest of us have right now.
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Old 21st Aug 2020, 11:44
  #2500 (permalink)  
 
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.....meanwhile the Bank of England reckons that "the UK economy will grow by 9% in 2021, 3.5% in 2022, with the economy forecast to get back to pre-Covid size at the end of 2021".

A lot of travel is of course discretionary and whether the travel/tourism/airline industries will recover at that rate is certainly debateable, but realistic positivity - rather than blind optimism, or the complete opposite - will make it more likely in my view.

Although I'm a SOU supporter (and until earlier this year a fairly regular user) I think talk of an EZY base reflect the former of the two ends of the spectrum mentioned above.
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