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Charlotte-Douglas Airport (CLT) Expansion

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Looks like Delta will be starting Portland, Oregon service to Tokyo in the next year.  Any thoughts on how/why Portland can support that service in comparison to CLT?

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20 minutes ago, navigator319 said:

Looks like Delta will be starting Portland, Oregon service to Tokyo in the next year.  Any thoughts on how/why Portland can support that service in comparison to CLT?

Portland’s location definitely helps. One of the reason we don’t TPAC is that any flight to Asia would overfly other AA hubs, which AA can funnel traffic through.

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2 hours ago, navigator319 said:

Looks like Delta will be starting Portland, Oregon service to Tokyo in the next year.  Any thoughts on how/why Portland can support that service in comparison to CLT?

Its 2,000 miles closer? (6,872 miles from Charlotte great circle, 4,822 miles from Portland great circle).

(Delta has operated PDX-Tokyo service on and off for more than 30 years. IIRC it was a ATL-Tokyo flight with a PDX stopover. I frequently found myself on the PDX-ATL leg in the 1990s — they always had Bento boxes for lunch).

Edited by kermit
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1 hour ago, CLT704 said:

Portland’s location definitely helps. One of the reason we don’t TPAC is that any flight to Asia would overfly other AA hubs, which AA can funnel traffic through.

Wouldn't any flight to Asia from CLT head north over Canada and the North Pole then back down avoiding any AA hubs bigger then CLT? 

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DL's service on PDX-NRT was inherited from NW.

DL did operate PDX-NRT with their own metal in the 90s/80s, along with PDX-FUK/ICN/NGO and maybe Osaka or a couple of other Asia cities. They essentially used it as a stopover as their L-1011s couldn't make TPAC work from ATL, so you would have L-1011s fly ATL-PDX and CVG-PDX and then reload pax and fuel and then fly off to Asia. The hub was extremely small and suffered with the Asian Financial Crisis in the late 1990s. Once they got  MD-11s and 777s, there was no need for PDX and they closed up shop.

After DL inherited the route from NW, the Port of Portland provided them with subsidies for a while IIRC. I think the flight is now subsidy free, and is supported by Nike and other PDX area businesses. 

PDX's location helps, and it is in a larger CSA than CLT, but only by about 500,000 people. I doubt that CLT will get a flight to Asia within the next 5 years. There are cities that are larger that still lack Asia service, and Asia flights are extremely volatile when it comes to financial performance. AA couldn't even make ORD-Asia work...they cut ORD-China and ORD-NRT is down to a thrice weekly flight with daily flights operated by their JV partner. AA and DL both exited the NYC-TYO market (the only flights by a US carrier NYC-East Asia are on UA ex EWR), even though TYO is a tough egg to crack and the Japanese are price-sensitive and loyal to JAL and ANA. 

The only hope that CLT has for "Asia" service would  be a flight to DXB on EK.

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1 hour ago, Urban Cowboy said:

I think a surprisingly low number of flights take the polar route. But yes, it would be the most efficient way to reach Asia on a direct flight. 

Flat Earthers need not apply for the journey.

image.png.5830e22b403fa59947c19c18e7bc09ae.png

They route all of that traffic through JFK or Chicago.  Other traffic goes through LAX.  Dallas has it just from volume of flights they have.

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14 hours ago, LKN704 said:

PDX's location helps, and it is in a larger CSA than CLT, but only by about 500,000 people. 

MSA is the standard and Portland's is slightly smaller than Charlotte. I can't see Charlotte having one either. I actually think JAL wants to grow their American partnership, so it COULD be an option. Middle East is still more likely IMO. 

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If this comes to pass, it will be interesting (and good for me): https://www.theledger.com/news/20190520/lakeland-in-talks-with-american-for-commercial-flights

Of note . . .

Quote

“American is adding 10 to 11 gates in Charlotte,” Conrad said. “We want to be one of those.”

. . .

Susannah Wesley, a spokeswoman for American, said she could not confirm any discussions about new flights to cities.

But she did say the airline recently announced that flights to Charlotte Douglas International Airport will increase to more than 700 by the end of the year from 664 in February.

Although, we were third choice.

Quote

Initially, the top three targets for the city were Delta Air Lines with flights to Atlanta, and American and United Airlines each offering a flight to Washington, D.C. Delta is out, Conrad said, describing airline officials there as not wishing to expand their regional footprint in Florida.

 

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26 minutes ago, InSouthPark said:

^^ That would be a lot of options within an hour-ish drive of each other!   Orlando, St Pete, Tampa, Sanford, and Lakeland.   

Even the drive notwithstanding, if I never had to fly into or out of Orlando ever again, it wouldn't be too soon.

Charlotte is mostly well run, easy in and out. Orlando, not so much. Too many tourists.

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22 hours ago, davidclt said:

If this comes to pass, it will be interesting (and good for me): https://www.theledger.com/news/20190520/lakeland-in-talks-with-american-for-commercial-flights

Of note . . .

Although, we were third choice.

 

“Braswell, who flew for Delta, said it would be great for the county.

“Once you get to Charlotte, you can get to anywhere,” Braswell said during the segment. “It opens Lakeland up to the rest of the world.””

 

LOVE THIS COMMENT

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13 minutes ago, LKN704 said:

As somewhat expected, AA is closing CLT-GDL.  

 

Is the other Mexican based airline still flying that route?  isn't Volaris still flying that route?

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Just checked....Volaris is still bookable 2x weekly through at least November.

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On 5/26/2019 at 9:20 AM, LKN704 said:

As somewhat expected, AA is closing CLT-GDL.  

 

So it seems as if the David in this story may have stood up to Goliath and won.  Although I am an AA fan and I hate when CLT loses any air service, I am glad that it’s AA bowing out on this one rather than Volaris.  

AA has been engaged in what I consider to be a turf war in Charlotte and seems to be targeting carriers that I imagine it feels it will easily chase out of market such as Volaris by simply introducing a competing product on those routes. The same applies to their recent upstart Munich route and their increased frequencies to the same markets as those served by the future Spirit routes.  I think they are trying to chase Lufthansa away and do not want Spirit to gain a toehold so they are just simply engaging in overtly anticompetitive business tactics.  My guess is that if they would have been successful in chasing Volaris out they would have likely dropped the CLT-GDL route altogether and if they are successful in chasing Spirit out they will reduce flying to the markets served by Spirit back to frequencies in line with those prior to the Spirit announcement and I find this type of behavior to be monopolistic and annoying.  

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What's interesting is that they initially announced that CLT-LAX would increase to 8 daily flights-the most I see in this summer's schedule is 7. So they may have already conceded some part of their expansion designed to keep NK away. They said that ORD would increase to 10 daily flights, which is posted in the schedule. JFK/EWR are supposed to have 16 daily flights together-the most I see is 15. These aren't major deviations, but it is still interesting to see the frequencies didn't go up to what they initially said they were. 

I noticed that both PDX and SMF both lost a summer frequency. Usually both had two daily flights-one in the AM and one in the PM. The AM flight is gone. Likewise, they have suspended SJC. While they announced that the route wasn't returning a while back, I find the suspension interesting given that the route was originally a 319 that operated for just July and August, and then quickly became a 321 that ran from May-October, so I find the suspension interesting. I also think SJC is the only destination that is served from RDU nonstop (on WN) but not from CLT. 

I do wonder how CLT-MUC is performing. I understand that gate space is constrained, but the timing of the flight is horrible. While the LH is also a bit early for me (I prefer Europe-bound TATL flights that depart after 10pm as it is much easier and natural to fall asleep), the 3:30pm CLT departure is really early and I can imagine it keeps some business travelers away. 

Edited by LKN704

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1 hour ago, LKN704 said:

What's interesting is that they initially announced that CLT-LAX would increase to 8 daily flights-the most I see in this summer's schedule is 7. So they may have already conceded some part of their expansion designed to keep NK away. They said that ORD would increase to 10 daily flights, which is posted in the schedule. JFK/EWR are supposed to have 16 daily flights together-the most I see is 15. These aren't major deviations, but it is still interesting to see the frequencies didn't go up to what they initially said they were. 

I noticed that both PDX and SMF both lost a summer frequency. Usually both had two daily flights-one in the AM and one in the PM. The AM flight is gone. Likewise, they have suspended SJC. While they announced that the route wasn't returning a while back, I find the suspension interesting given that the route was originally a 319 that operated for just July and August, and then quickly became a 321 that ran from May-October, so I find the suspension interesting. I also think SJC is the only destination that is served from RDU nonstop (on WN) but not from CLT. 

Those frequency reductions are probably due to the MAX grounding and the resulting reshuffling of the schedule.  Especially the transcon frequencies. That's a long flight and the airplane is probably better used on 2 shorter segments to reduce the number of flights that need to be cancelled. And flying the evening outbound and redeye return is a much more efficient utilization than a morning outbound and midday return. The aircraft wouldn't be flying shorter trips along the east coast or to the midwest overnight, but does make those trips during the day.

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On 5/17/2019 at 10:45 AM, allthingsplanes said:

They route all of that traffic through JFK or Chicago.  Other traffic goes through LAX.  Dallas has it just from volume of flights they have.

To be frank I'm not sure that we can really expect anything else, unless a non-alliance Asian airline wanted to open an east coast route and found Charlotte cost effective. I can't even imagine who that would be, though. ANA, Air China, and Singapore Airlines are in Star with AA, Cathay and JAL are in oneworld, and China Airlines is in SkyTeam... come on VietJet, I guess?

Edited by asthasr
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2 hours ago, asthasr said:

To be frank I'm not sure that we can really expect anything else, unless a non-alliance Asian airline wanted to open an east coast route and found Charlotte cost effective. I can't even imagine who that would be, though. ANA, Air China, and Singapore Airlines are in Star with AA, Cathay and JAL are in oneworld, and China Airlines is in SkyTeam... come on VietJet, I guess?

I would think that selling a direct Asia to..... Charlotte....???? route would be pretty tough in Asia. The number of UK residents who have even heard of Charlotte is low, I am sure that number is much lower in the East.

 

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56 minutes ago, kermit said:

I would think that selling a direct Asia to..... Charlotte....???? route would be pretty tough in Asia. The number of UK residents who have even heard of Charlotte is low, I am sure that number is much lower in the East.

 

AA or an AA partner (namely JAL) would probably be the only realistic possibility for a passenger flight to East Asia because of the opportunity to connect to destinations beyond CLT. But not only is there very low demand to and from Charlotte itself to Asia, there just aren't  very many unique connecting destinations that would generate enough demand. Nearly any southeastern cities that could generate significant demand from Asia already have flights to DFW and ORD on AA (or ATL, IAD, DTW, EWR, etc on DL and UA) which have ample service to Asia. The handful of people needing to get from Asia to Florence or New Bern or Huntington can double connect. AA has barely been able to make Chicago-Asia work so I just can't see CLT-Asia anytime soon. As some others have mentioned, CLT-Middle East on Emirates or Qatar are maybe more likely, but the environment for those carriers isn't as good as it was in the past and the local demand issues work against them too so that's probably a long shot in the near term as well. 

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1 hour ago, TCLT said:

AA or an AA partner (namely JAL) would probably be the only realistic possibility for a passenger flight to East Asia because of the opportunity to connect to destinations beyond CLT.

JAL already has a nearby flight, IAD-NRT. I'll actually be on that Wednesday. That's why I said non-alliance would be the only chance; those top tier, partnered Asian airlines all already have name brand cities (IAD, JFK, ORD) as destinations.

All in all it was a roundabout way to say that I don't think it will happen.

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