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Not another low cost airline . . .

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Not another low cost airline . . .

Old 15th Apr 2002, 16:15
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Not another low cost airline . . .

Acording to Flight International this week the CAA have received a business plan for yet another low cost carrier. Briefly it is for 10-12 737-300's to operate European services away from London. Birmingham has been mentioned as a possible base.

The launch date is September and the project conception is by Neil Hansford who founded Euro Direct.

Are we heading for an over capacity problem on the low cost market? Perhaps back to the days of 'Which one goes bust this year?'

Cynicism aside it is good to see new job opportunities and growth.
 
Old 15th Apr 2002, 19:20
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Could struggle to break into the market in the midlands, what with bmibaby and Go at EMA, BE at BHX and BA/BHX starting to advertise very competitive fairs. Definitely sounds like market saturation.
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Old 15th Apr 2002, 20:11
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Hand Solo, I totally agree with you. The market is saturated now and this new airline will find it extremely difficult to compete with the established low fares airlines, but I suspect that so is bmiBaby. What these new start ups don't seem to get is that a low fares airline isn't only about flying 737's and charging for food and drink.

For a start, BHX would be too expensive to operate from and with Go and bmibaby, there are 2 established players (but I have my doubts about bmi in the low fares sector) already in the Midlands market so I don't think this new airline will ever get off the ground.
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Old 15th Apr 2002, 21:36
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The basic rule of a free market economy is that as long as somebody thinks somebody else is screwing the pooch, then there's a chance they can make a few bob, so they get into the game. Good luck to them, and up BA and all their plonker wannabes'! Dan Air ROOLED! I've only had a couple 'onest.
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Old 15th Apr 2002, 22:06
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BHX is ideal for a LCC. Far enough away from EMA to be regarded as a different catchment area.
The routes that a B737 would serve would not conflict with BE too much (and since BE have no problem coming on other airlines routes then a little competition will be good for them).
New routes are normally given very healthy discounts on landing, parking, pax charges so the normal published charges mean little.....for 3-5 years.
Good news for Pilots, Cabin Crew, Engineers etc. This is what we need to hear.
Not to forget Joe Public.
If it is NH then I hope he does a better job than he did of Euro Disney.
Yes please, a freebie window seat in the emerg. exit row!

Last edited by jester42; 15th Apr 2002 at 22:21.
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 07:00
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I don't think it's a case of the market being saturated with LCC's. I recently read an article in Flight that said that all of the current LCC's combined are still only carrying around 10% of European PAX.

Therefore, the potential for market growth in the lost cost sector is still enormous, especially as most of the national airlines still seem to have their head up their a**e about what to do.

A new LCC is more likely to further threaten the big boys, than any of the LCC's.

That's my 10 worth!!

RD
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 08:03
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Thumbs down

Any new jobs have got to be good news. The midlands will be very crowded in the near future though.
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 09:18
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But surely they will have trouble crewing the 737's as in my opinion most of the 737 rated pilots will be in secure jobs by now. So with any luck they will have to start running conversion courses which is not good news for a start up airline.
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 10:03
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If N London and the Midlands are already so well served, why doesn't someone start low-cost operations south west of London? I know that there are now some low-cost ops from LGW but for anyone living to the SW of London, getting to LGW by M25 or rail is a pain and getting to LTN or STN is even worse. Wot about Southampton or Bournemouth - great catchment area and, presently, no competition. Maybe SOU is limited for B733/A320?
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 10:37
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Jester

I agree with you that BHX would be perfect for a low cost airline.

However, somewhere in the back of my mind, I recall that the airport authorities there are dead against allowing this type of set up operating from there.

Can anyone expand/shoot down on this recollection??
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 12:09
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It would be good to see some lo cost ops out of Manchester although I guess the costs are too high from there. More power to attempts to reduce overheads. Hopefully some of that will appear as lower costs rather than simply increased profits.

I think there is a market ready and waiting as John Lennon doesn't appear to satisfy the business users.
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 15:14
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I understand that MAN (the owners of which also own EMA) are happy with the business they have there at the moment.

LGW is far from being a pain for people in Kent, Sussex, and Surrey and S London - esp. compared to LHR and N London. The low cost option there is currently only the AMS, NCE lot of routes, rather than the diverse range offered by Ryanair and others.
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 15:33
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Torquelink,

Ryanair will certainly take care of Bournemouth by the looks of things. Apart from their Dublin flights, this year flights to Frankfurt (Hahn) have been added and I suspect they will link both current and future continental bases to BOH, giving it a wide range of destinations all over Europe.
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 16:28
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How about BHX (south) as a base,i.e Coventry. Went in there last month with a 737-300!
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 19:04
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I think Birmingham is ripe for a 'LCC' (as Flight have christened them). I don't think Brummies associate themselves with east Mids, for example public transport there, especially from birmingham, is appalling, no, non existant. EMA has a fair old catchment area of its own, the cities of Derby, Nottingham, leicester an Sheffield (yes, Sheffield) must house a few million between them.

Conversely public transport to BHX is quite good, and will be improve this summer once the new monorail system is running.

BA appear to be ownsizing at BHX (Embraers and them godawful 146's from A319s), perhaps focusing on 'higher value' or whatever. But their heart isn't in it (think JFK, and 146 for an A319 is an insult), I wouldn't be entirely surprised if BHX in 5 years consisted on XYZ Low fare Airlines, with British European catering for those who want the traditional product.

Furthermore if XYZ Airlines at Birmingham serve 'business' destinations (AMS, FRA, CPH, CDG, MXP, wherever) they are in a different ball game to Baby and Go at EMA.

So there.

WT

(PS no need to turn this into a 146 debate, its about BHX!)
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 21:15
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Apparently christened HEART AIR. I assume it reflects the Heart of England, rather than some egotistical name from the former boss of Toon Airways.

Good luck to 'em.

WT

(PS freightdoggydog can a fully loaded 737-300 get out of Cov OK? Just wondering.....)
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Old 16th Apr 2002, 21:31
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We went in with 15,000kgs of Freight, but went out empty back to STN so the Performance wasn,t that hairy. Seem to remember
Barrat-Jolly operated 707s and 737-200s out of COV a few years back.
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Old 17th Apr 2002, 13:43
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No contact at all for this newby yet ?
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Old 17th Apr 2002, 16:33
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FlyingIrishman

I think it fair to point out that BMIBaby is doing very well at the moment and iff it continues at this rate it will be an established player, however things could change as always.

I personally feel that if the states can only support 2 major low cost players (Southwest & Jetblue) how can we support 5 or 6 on our small island. Don't be surprised to see the Charter boys come out fighting, (They won't stick to 7 & 14 night durations much longer). Lo Cost work by selling Cheap and then increasing revenue the near you get to departure. However The Tour ops work the other way round and believe me they have oceans of availability at the moment for all but August, so the low cost will struggle on PMI, ALC, GRO, AGP & FAO for sure.
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Old 18th Apr 2002, 20:34
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Read a quote from the guy setting this up the other day and he said that Birmingham was the biggest airport outside London with X million passengers.Obviously never read about Manchester Airport.If he cant even get simple facts correct then what chance getting his airline up and running and then making a real go of it against established ones?
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