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Gary Kelly: AirTran absorption to be completed in 2014

Gary Kelly: AirTran absorption to be completed in 2014

 
Old Dec 19, 13, 12:49 am
  #1  
nsx
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Gary Kelly: AirTran absorption to be completed in 2014

Gary Kelly said recently that operations will be 100% Southwest by the end of 2014, and also that Southwest will announce its international plans in January 2014. See http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/south...2-12-13-a.html
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Old Dec 19, 13, 7:29 am
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Wonderful news.

Stir that pot.
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Old Dec 19, 13, 7:40 am
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The End is near!

Reasons to stay with WN regardless of frequent flyer status
1) Airline credit of your ticket if you change your plans or if you flat out just want to take advantage of a lowered fare on the flight you are about to take.
2) Free baggage(irrelevant to those who can get status on other airlines)


Hmm, that's all I got. So I would book on WN for sure if it involves a pricey flight that I want to hope that will go down in price later or am not sure of my plans.

Questions I do have: If you are ATL based passenger on WN, what are the chances of getting an exit row seat as an elite traveler. How do they prioritize the boarding position for frequent flyers? Based on price paid? Check in?

Atlanta travelers, the good days are gone.

I really do not want to go to Delta, but this will force my hand in most cases. The sad thing is with AirTran, I didn't need to choose a US based carrier for my international travel. Now, with AirTran going away, I would need to lump at least one or two of my international trips to Delta to get some decent medallion status.
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Old Dec 19, 13, 7:45 am
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Through the end of November, 14 FL aircraft have been converted to Southwest livery.

They have 33 aircraft left to convert.

Barrons
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Old Dec 19, 13, 9:16 am
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Let me clarify: I'm just reporting the news item in case it helps anyone decide which airline to fly in 2014. If you read the Southwest forum you'll see that the old regulars like me are not thrilled about some of the changes Southwest has made. Topping the list are Even More Seats (adding a row of seats and tellng us that the new configuration is better) and devaluing the points per dollar redemption ratio in a fare-based program which should never require that. We're not happy campers. Come to think of it, that had to be the outcome as Southwest becomes more and more like the other large airlines...
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Old Dec 19, 13, 9:19 am
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Originally Posted by saneman View Post
The End is near!


Atlanta travelers, the good days are gone.
Interesting read...

http://reason.org/blog/show/southwes...cisions-are-pu
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Old Dec 19, 13, 11:38 am
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Based on what I read elsewhere. Airtran will still have 30 something 717s at the end of 2014. A lot of people are betting they will still be flying in 2015. I can't imagine GK wanting to park them and lose the income.

Perhaps Airtran flights might be integrated into Southwests schedule with no independent booking. But I understand there are also union issues.

There will also be something like 1,000 Airtran pilots left to transition, assuming many are not jumping ship to go to Delta or one of the other legacies that have started hiring recently. Apparently while First Offices are getting a pay bump, Airtran Captains are being forced to go back to First Officer and taking a pay cut, although whether the pay cut is real or not is a contested issue. Oddly Southwest has recently started hiring and training a small number of new pilots.
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Old Dec 19, 13, 12:36 pm
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Originally Posted by mke9499 View Post
Interesting read.

I wish he'd quit bringing up Atlantic City...the subsidies ran out on that, and Airtran was killing it anyways. That route killed itself, it wasn't killed by Southwest.

But yeah, losing a 2nd airline hub here and replacing it with a point-to-point airline is not helping our frequency - and not helping price competition...I like Southwest as an airline, but I was better off as an Atlanta flyer with Airtran here.
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Old Dec 19, 13, 1:00 pm
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Originally Posted by saneman View Post
The End is near!

Reasons to stay with WN regardless of frequent flyer status
1) Airline credit of your ticket if you change your plans or if you flat out just want to take advantage of a lowered fare on the flight you are about to take.
2) Free baggage(irrelevant to those who can get status on other airlines)


Hmm, that's all I got.
How about:

Answering the phone. No charge.
Boarding fast, great on time record, and getting the bags out fast.
Acting like they value their customers.
No nickel and dimeing.
And they haven't been bankrupt.
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Old Dec 19, 13, 3:02 pm
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Originally Posted by bobunf View Post
How about:

Answering the phone. No charge.
Boarding fast, great on time record, and getting the bags out fast.
Acting like they value their customers.
No nickel and dimeing.
And they haven't been bankrupt.
Delta doesn't charge for mere phone inquiries.
Fast boarding means nothing to me. What are they? 10% faster?
You got me on the valuing their customers. No idea how WN values. But the legacies sure as hell don't.
Sure no nickel and diming on bags , change fees. But everything else, they are no different. what do you call all those early bird fees and that ridiculous early boarding 40 dollar fee when that same fee or less gets me economy comfort on Delta? What about no standby?
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Old Dec 19, 13, 10:29 pm
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Originally Posted by bobunf View Post

Boarding fast, great on time record.
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/south...dead-last.html

Please don't believe everything you may have heard in the past...remember, that WAS the past!
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Old Dec 20, 13, 12:26 am
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717-200s going to Delta

Originally Posted by rsteinmetz70112 View Post
Based on what I read elsewhere. Airtran will still have 30 something 717s at the end of 2014. A lot of people are betting they will still be flying in 2015.
I believe all the 717-200s are due to transition to Delta Air Lines by the end of 2014.

Delta has already begun taking delivery and they are quite pleased with them.
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Old Dec 20, 13, 5:09 am
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Originally Posted by acvitale View Post
I believe all the 717-200s are due to transition to Delta Air Lines by the end of 2014.

Delta has already begun taking delivery and they are quite pleased with them.
From the article linked below:
The first batch consisting of 16 717s will join Delta’s fleet in 2013, followed by another 36 in 2014 and the final 36 in 2015.
http://www.nycaviation.com/2012/07/d.../#.UrQxWCdqzaQ

I heard there were some minor regulatory problems with the reconfiguration and they may be a little behind schedule.
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Old Dec 20, 13, 9:34 am
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Originally Posted by saneman View Post
The End is near!

Reasons to stay with WN regardless of frequent flyer status
1) Airline credit of your ticket if you change your plans or if you flat out just want to take advantage of a lowered fare on the flight you are about to take.
2) Free baggage(irrelevant to those who can get status on other airlines)

Hmm, that's all I got.
Depending whether you consider the Companion Pass as some variety of "FF status," (it is not in my case) unlimited free flights for a second person for up to 2 years would seem to have some value.

Also, you can use WN points for cheap flights, so you can get a RT for way less than 25K (or more likely 50K on some airlines out of ATL I could name). Keep that $200 and burn ~12K.

Trickier: can buy WN gift cards at OfficeMax/Depot with Ink Bold/Plus CC and get 5 UR points per dollar, worth around 7-8% back. Never seen any other airline card there. Or at the supermarket when they are running some sort of 10-20%-free-groceries-per-$100 gift card deal. And gas points. And 6% cashback with Amex Blue Preferred.

Some WN airports are better than the ones legacies use, depending on your preference. For example, I much prefer MDW to ORD.

Last edited by toomanybooks; Dec 20, 13 at 9:45 am
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Old Dec 20, 13, 1:19 pm
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So I looked at the WN benefits.
Since I fly more than 25 one way flights, but less than 50 one way flights, I would be A - LIST and not A List Preferred.

A $125 one way flight is my typical fare. So I would earn 6 x 125 = 750 points. a 25% bonus gives me a total of nearly 940 points.

Now redemption is based on dollar amounts. 70 points per dollar of the fare.
I usually try to get my money's worth on redemption. So I normally save my points for $200 or greater one way fares. A $200 fare will require 14000 points. That's nearly 15 typical one way segments I take. With AirTran, I use 8 typical one way flight credits (sometimes less, as we used to get bonus credits a lot). So my FF is already devalued big time. Even if I were to redeem it for another $125 fare, that's 8750 points I need which is about 9 one way tickets spent on.
So typically anywhere from 8-15 one way tickets will get me a redemption for 1 one way ticket on WN.

On Delta, I am guessing if it's something short like my trips to PBI, and even if I am lucky to get a 25000 RT redemption(ticket probably being worth 250) , it will take nearly 50 short one way trips or 25+ medium one way trips(say ATL- PHL) to redeem one RT low demand ticket.
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