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-   -   STANSTED - 2 (https://www.pprune.org/airlines-airports-routes/245928-stansted-2-a.html)

LGS6753 25th Nov 2012 10:58

If the Malaysians are indeed serious bidders, this is likely to increase the price paid for the airport. Good for BAA but not for STN. An increased price means increased borrowing/investment, which means higher interest payments/dividends, which reduces the amount of money available for further investment, whether in freshening the place up, making improvements, or incentivising new airline customers.

LGS6753 25th Nov 2012 11:11


And also LGS6753, you may want to distinguish the difference between architecture and infrastructure. Two very different things and of which the latter is vital for an airport to "succeed".
Of course architecture and infrastructure are different. But infrastructure is no use if it's in the wrong place.

Well areas like Herfordshire and Cambridgshire, as well as parts of Essex are very affluent areas and with them all having Stansted as their local airport
Many of the most affluent parts of Hertfordshire are very close to, and easily accessible to Luton, rather than STN. Consider Tring, Berkhamsted, Harpenden, St Albans, Hemel Hempsted and Watford, to say nothing of Hatfield, Welwyn, Knebworth, Stevenage, Hitchin and Letchworth.

toledoashley 25th Nov 2012 11:22

Yes, youre quite right that most in the far west of Hertfordshire (Harpenden, Tring, Berkhamsted etc), would consider Luton and Heathrow as the nearest airports.

Fairdealfrank 18th Dec 2012 19:54

Boris is now planning a four runway Stansted.
Ho ho ho, finally Boris hoists the white flag over the sinking Silver Island, the plans clearly do not hold water!

Of course Stansted has most of the problems and disadvantages of Silver Island and as mentioned many times before: it does not address the issue of a lack of HUB capacity.

Look closely at the picture of the four-rwy Stansted (above), there's no activity there, nothing landing or taking off at the Essex airport: "the only way is Mirabel".

FRatSTN 19th Dec 2012 19:40

Travel Service Airlines will now operate up to two weekly charter flights from Stansted next summer. They will serve Gran Canaria on Mondays from May 6th and will also add a Thursday service to Lanzarote from July 25th.

Also there will be a charter flight to Dalaman on Wednesdays starting from July 24th operated by Freebird Airlines. Not much I know, but anything that diversifies Stansted's mix of traffic and is not Ryanair would probably be welcomed by most at Stansted nowadays.

FRatSTN 29th Dec 2012 17:06

I don't want to speak too soon but it looks like their could be a chance of the Stansted passenger declines dying out next year, even with the possibility of some small growth. During the summer holiday period of next year, there is about the same amount of traffic as there was last year and although we've lost another EasyJet aircraft as well as the departure of Atlasjet and Wow air, there seems to be a bit more in the way of Ryanair and that has about cancelled out the loss of around 5 daily departures collectively by EZY, KK and X9. I'm also worried that Germanwings may leave as they go through all the reform by Lufthansa but I really hope they do not. They are now the largest carrier at Stansted excluding FR and EZY. However, as we still have a few more months until the summer 2013 timetables kick in, I dare say Ryanair will add more flights as they usually do early in the new year so there could be a chance, fingers crossed.

STN Ramp Rat 29th Dec 2012 17:24

Maybe German Wings will grow. the LHR slots are quite valuable and better suited to an increased FRA and MUC service rather than a CGN,HAM or BER service

FRatSTN 29th Dec 2012 17:32

But they will open a new base in Hamburg for 2013 and haven't taken the opportunity to add London Stansted although that new base does seem quite small and very targeted for the leisure/holiday market. Maybe it will just be a seasonal base, I don't know.

Furthermore, the Cologne and especially the Stuttgart services have seen frequency reductions and now Heathrow has a lot more flights to those places than Stansted with Germanwings. I hope you're right but I still have a horrible feeling that a move out will happen, even if it's a move to Gatwick... or Southend:eek:

vectisman 29th Dec 2012 19:09

Personally I feel that GermanWings may indeed consolidate at Heathrow and/or Gatwick. It will be working closely with Lufthansa to maintain high yield and connectivity. I can see Lufthansa still wanting all the main German cities connected to Heathrow to ensure that it does not give away high yield traffic to BA. Remember from next year only Frankfurt and Munich will have Lufthansa branded services on Short Haul. The rest goes to GermanWings as a 100% owned subsidiary. It will be interesting to see how Air Berlin responds.


FRatSTN 29th Dec 2012 20:11

Well Air Berlin are screwed. They are responsible for the largest declines in traffic over the years now with just up to 3 daily flights with a Dash-8 down from a good amount of A320/B737 sized jets a day. Clearly an airline is not going to be that sustainable with declines at a large European capital city like that and they couldn't make Gatwick work. I doubt they would add much if anything to Stansted if Germanwinhs pulled out.

vectisman 29th Dec 2012 20:36

I believe when Air Berlin have recovered from their financial pressures we may see them expand at Gatwick alongside their OneWorld partner British Airways. Stansted does not figure much in their future plans. I am not sure if 'not making an airport work' is explanation enough. Lack of success at the moment is more to do with the dire economic situation and lack of passengers. Airlines do not want routes to fail or walk away from those that make a profit.
Unfortunately Stansted is going through a sustained, maybe long term decline. The dominance of Ryanair makes other airlines wary and has given Stansted a rather low cost down market image. (I am not saying I agree with that sentiment just pointing it out)
Both Heathrow and Gatwick have higher brand awareness. I can see Easyjet leaving eventually as Southend expands. Quite incredible that Stansted was once one of Easyjet's largest bases and now it has less than 10 based aircraft whilst Gatwick has over 50.
Easyjet has moved on and matured its product. Ryanair has not. Interestingly Ryanair now only has a marginal presence at Gatwick on Irish routes. This is to do with the catchment area being more prepared to pay for a higher quality service than Ryanair's business model allows it to offer.


FRatSTN 30th Dec 2012 11:36

I would have thought it's not so doom and gloom for Stansted considering it has sparked a lot of interest from potential buyers. Why would anybody be interested in it if it has such a dull future and "sustained decline". In fact, I regained some contribution to this forum after a couple of weeks of nothing to raise the point that there doesn't seem to be much decline next year at all as of yet.

Southend is not ever likely to be able to cater for even the reduced amount that EasyJet has at Stansted today so I think a complete pull out by EasyJet is not going to happen. I personally think that after the sale, they will actually consider some growth opportunites or putting back some of what they've taken out, but of course EasyJet is never going to offer the amount they do from Gatwick.

Also your anylsis would suggest that Gatwick is somewhat more restricted than Stansted in a sense as it would suggest it can only cater for something that has higher levels of quality and service. Funny that it's a low cost airline with fairly similar levels of quality and service to Ryanair that accounts for 40% of its traffic then, I would make that close to 15 million passengers a year. EasyJet still achives very good load factors for Stansted flights, but that doesn't mean lots of profit as the landing charges and operating costs are through the roof and that may be something a new owner may do something about.

Ryanair carries only around 12 million passengers annually from Stansted now, down from a peak of 15 million at a time when Stansted offered a good range of EasyJet flights as well as a range of services from a range of other airlines, something that is really a lack nowadays. I think the BAA ownership is solely to blame for the declines and things will start to look up after it's under seperate ownership from Heathrow.

LGS6753 30th Dec 2012 11:59

I think the BAA ownership is solely to blame for the declines and things will start to look up
I'm afraid this is just blind optimism. The fact is, Stansted is in the wrong place. It's "success" in recent years was entirely due to the BAA cross-subsidising it from Heathrow, and its decline has resulted from the ending of those subsidies.

It's current role, and the only one it will have in the foreseeable future is to take the London area traffic that can't be accommodated at other, better-connected and better-situated London airports (Heathrow, Gatwick, Luton, City and even Southend).

The BAA wants to raise as much as possible from its sale, and has attracted expressions of interest from enough bidders to stimulate a competition. Hubris and ambition (both key attributes of senior directors) are likely to mean that the successful bidder over-pays. The more they pay, the less will be available to invest in and run STN. I would not be surprised to see it change hands again in about 5 years' time - especially if traffic does not increase, and especially if the buyer pays a "full price".

pwalhx 30th Dec 2012 12:08

Gatwick attracts passengers from a much wider catchment area and is far easier to get to from further afield in the country and of course offers a wider range of services, in particular long haul. As a northerner I would much rather find a routing I can leave from my local airport but if I had to transit via the south (excl. LHR) I would choose Gatwick over Stansted any day as I find it quite a depressing place.

I am sorry but I cannot agree that Ryanair and Easyjet have comparable services, Easy by far offer a more pleasant passenger experience. I am not knocking Ryanair for that, you get what it says on the tin.

FRatSTN 30th Dec 2012 12:38


It's current role, and the only one it will have in the foreseeable future is to take the London area traffic that can't be accommodated at other, better-connected and better-situated London airports (Heathrow, Gatwick, Luton, City and even Southend).
Wow, blimey you need to do some more research mate. Perhaps you should look at a map and road networks for a start. How on earth can you come to such a general, uneducated and basically grim conclusion. What makes you think that Stansted is so appalingly situated and connected when compared to the other London airports?? Gatwick and Luton are about the same distance and similar travel times from Central London by road. Stansted is actually best by some margin (apart from City and Heathrow which are very different airports and not comparible to Stansted anyway) for many parts of north and east London. The rail services are slower than from Gatwick and Luton, but atleast you don't need to wait for a 5-10 minutes shuttle bus ride to get you to the airport to the station like you do at Luton, or cram into a monorail from Gatwick North Terminal to get to the station.

As for Southend, there is no motorway connection, it takes well over an hour to get into central London and has a less regular and slower rail service than from Stansted. Plus there is only 180 degress radius of cathment area at Southend as it's by the sea, Stansted has 360.

Since the last major infrastructural investments at Stansted (terminal expansion and the new Ryanair maintainance hanger) were around 2008/9 time whilst Heathrow is in the process of rebuilding terminal 2 and airport charges have doubled at Stansted, is it not clear that BAA are actually just using Stansted as an extra source of cash to invest further in Heathrow? Why else would they spend 3 years trying to fight for an airport that is in decline? Although in decline, Stansted still makes a profit and they only wanted it so that it would reduce competition and most importantly raise a little more finance in order to invest more at Heathrow!

FRatSTN 30th Dec 2012 12:50

I am sorry but I cannot agree that Ryanair and Easyjet have comparable
They are in the sense that they adpot very similar business models in that they are both low cost airlines who offer a basic service in return for a cheaper flights but have extra charges for bags, reserved seating, insurance etc. Yes it might be argued that EasyJet offers better customer service, but the general concept of each is very comparable.

The only major difference really is that Ryanair prefers the smaller secondary airports whilst EasyJet serves the large primary ones and with Ryanair now big at Barcelona, Budapest, Manchester... and EasyJet in Southend, even that gap seems to be closing in slightly. But the fact that EasyJet is Ryanair's largest competitor and vice versa shows that they are pretty comparable in any way shape or form.

DublinPole 30th Dec 2012 13:13

Easyjet and Ryanair are comparable in a number of ways, yes they are not exactly the same but for sure many people will compare each of them to the other when looking for flights where possible, of course there are a decent sized percentage who also would not do that, but to many they are comparable. I quite like both airlines to be honest, although being in Dublin I rarely use Easyjet as they are simply not here.

Without doubt Ryanair are cheaper in my experience when it comes to raw price, but it is true that Easyjet offer better airports when it comes to business flights as they go to primary airports. However going to secondary airports isn't always that bad a thing as not everyone lives in the UK's biggest cities.

If someone has family south of London obviously Gatwick or Heathrow may be better, but a friend of mine has family in Essex and Stansted has always been by far the best option for them. I'd rather FR and other carriers fly to regional airports than us to just have 5 or so large airports in the UK. It always makes me laugh that such people who are against regional airports typically live in a large city and expect people to commute 2-3 hours plus to such airports and the moan at carriers for flying to regional airports which are far more quicker to access. Not everyone wants to travel to Glasgow, Edinburgh, Manchester, London or Birmingham.

Also what is often overlooked by many people who say that FR cram people in is that actually Easyjet has a lower seat pitch but that is rarely brought up which makes me laugh.

FRatSTN 30th Dec 2012 13:25

I totally agree. I think all that's happening here is that Ryanair's poor reputation which the media has generated and influenced people's view of the airline is leading to the same impression on Stansted purely because it's the dominant airline. For example, remember that Panorama programme "Why Hate Ryanair" a few years ago? Although EasyJet are very similar in many ways, you would never get a "Why Hate EasyJet" would you? That is a classic example of the media trying to get people to dislike Ryanair and fly with the more expnesive airlines.

That fact is, Stansted is not disadvantaged by its location, size, accessibilty a great deal. Yes rail improvements would be beneficial but the airport has managed to attract 24 million people a year in its current form. What Stansted is effected by is people who still have a snobbish attitude and favouritism of the airlines with more service and the airports that they go from.

DublinPole 30th Dec 2012 13:45

Of course, there are numerous examples in which Ryanair is sometimes heavily criticised for but the same, and in some cases, higher prices or charges exists on other airlines but they are never targeted, and the press give the impression that Ryanair are by far the worst. I happen to agree that some fees by Ryanair are over the top, but other airlines are not innocent in this regard but get far less attention from the media.

The Seat Pitch example is one area, where Ryanair is often accused of cramming people in like sardines but many others offer 30' seat pitch with no complaints, whilst other operators offer even smaller. Again no criticism for such carriers and I've even seen Easyjet passengers mock Ryanair passengers about being crammed in like sardines, despite the fact such passengers had in fact more room!

Card surcharges on Easyjet are another good example, I booked a one way flight to Belfast on one occasion and was charged 9 admin fee and another 2.5% on top. True it works out more expensive because it's a one way flight, but still paying over 10 euro in card surcharges for a 50 euro flight is too much. True, when booking for more than one person and a return flight it works out better value, but for a single flight it's very poor value.

Aer Lingus baggage is one where I've seen people get caught out before the website text was clarified last year. Your short haul baggage allowance is 15kg (UK) or 20kg (Europe) and you can add extra bags for I think it was 12 euro. The thing was that whilst you can add up to 8 extra bags, the total baggage allowance was the original limit shared between all the bags. At least with FR you have the chance of adding an extra bag that comes with it's own weight. I saw many passengers not able to believe that paying for extra bags does not entitle them to extra weight.

I am not saying that Aer Lingus, Easyjet or Ryanair, Jet2 or Wizz are any worse than each other when it comes to optional extra charges, but the fact is that the media often portray FR as fleecing everyone left right and center, when many of the tactics they use are employed by most other low cost airlines and even some flag carriers to some degree or other, but it's not widely reported in the media.

There are pros and cons to each airlines terms and conditions and the way they operate and they all suit people to varying degrees. There is not the huge gulf in difference between Ryanair and the rest of the field that some people claim in the media who seem to view FR as bottom of the league.

FRatSTN 30th Dec 2012 14:41

I suppose it's mainly down to the... how should I put it... Unique? CEO. He likes to get his own way and get himself heard, and whether people like him or not, look what he has done for himself and what he has created. If only all people in business were like him. Stansted plays a big part in that success and Ryanair would not be the way it is today if it wasn't for Stansted.

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