Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Airlines and Mileage Programs > Alaska Airlines | Mileage Plan
Reload this Page >

As competition heats up, Southwest wants San Diego to know it's No. 1 airline

As competition heats up, Southwest wants San Diego to know it's No. 1 airline

Old Jan 29, 18, 8:28 am
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: La Jolla, Ca
Programs: AA 2MM LT PLT; AS MVP Gold; HHonors Diamond; IHG PLT
Posts: 3,076
As competition heats up, Southwest wants San Diego to know it's No. 1 airline

As competition heats up, Southwest wants San Diego to know it's No. 1 airline - The San Diego Union-Tribune

"...While Southwest is known for its frequent use of advertising, this latest marketing initiative comes at a time when one of Southwest's biggest rivals in California — Alaska Airlines — has been making aggressive inroads both statewide and in San Diego.Southwest easily leads Alaska in the number of weekly flights in and out of San Diego — 700 vs. 272, according to the San Diego International Airport. But as of this month, each had 28 nonstop destinations. By this summer, Southwest will lead Alaska with five more destinations..."

"...In California, Southwest no doubt is feeling the pressure from Alaska Airlines’ aggressive expansion, especially since its acquisition of Virgin America, said airline analyst Henry Harteveldt. Southwest still has the advantage of free checked baggage and no change fees, but it has to be wary of its competition, he said.“Alaska poses one of the strongest competitors in San Diego that they’ve had in a long time, offering more nonstop destinations and competing on both price and product in California,” Harteveldt said. “Competitors are coming for its business and Southwest has to defend itself.”..."

Kelly continues to dangle the Hawaii carrot as launch date keeps moving to the right, in an effort to retain interest from loyalists, distract from competition. At SOME point, WN will have to fish or cut bait:
"...One destination Southwest is eager to start competing in is Hawaii. It announced last year its plan to start flying there, hopefully by the end of the year, but has offered no substantive updates since then.Southwest needs approval first from the Federal Aviation Administration to operate longer flights over the ocean, and Kelly said Thursday the airline is on track for that process, having recently submitted its application.He could not make any promises, though, that flights will in fact start by the end of the year, and it’s still unknown which California markets will initially get the nonstop service. What Kelly is more confident of is that Southwest will be selling tickets for Hawaii flights by the end of 2018.“There is a chance we could be flying by the end of the year and that will be our goal,” he said on the earnings call. “If we’re up and flying by the end of the year, I’ll be happy but if we don’t it won’t be the end of the world.”..."
diver858 is offline  
Old Jan 29, 18, 9:38 am
  #2  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend, Moderator, Information Desk, Ambassador, Alaska Airlines
Hilton Contributor BadgeIHG Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: ANC, MRI
Programs: AS MVP Gold75K, AS 1MM, Maika`i Card, AGR, HH Gold, Hertz PC, Marriott LTG, SPG Gold, CO, 7H, BA, 8E
Posts: 41,797
Ahem, time for the SAN Alaska Lounge?
diver858, jsguyrus and SimonT007 like this.
beckoa is offline  
Old Jan 29, 18, 10:28 am
  #3  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Carlsbad, CA
Programs: United Gold (Million Miler), Alaska MVP
Posts: 178
Originally Posted by beckoa View Post
Ahem, time for the SAN Alaska Lounge?
Iím at the packed gate right now. That old United lounge would be a nice place to hide for a few minutes.

A major remodel is planned for Terminal 1. It really needs it. And an Alaska non stop to Las Vegas would be nice.
SimonT007 likes this.
buzglyd is offline  
Old Jan 29, 18, 11:44 am
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: La Jolla, Ca
Programs: AA 2MM LT PLT; AS MVP Gold; HHonors Diamond; IHG PLT
Posts: 3,076
Originally Posted by buzglyd View Post
And an Alaska non stop to Las Vegas would be nice.
^^
Delta (operated by OO) is currently the only real option SAN-LAS (I don't consider NK or WN), would be great for AS to add a couple of flights per day to the mix, up the ante in the battles with DL, WN.
SimonT007 likes this.
diver858 is offline  
Old Jan 29, 18, 11:59 am
  #5  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: SEA, but up and down the coast a lot
Programs: OneSky Alliance Elite+ with Zirconium and oak leaf cluster, Braniff Unobtainium
Posts: 17,921
Originally Posted by buzglyd View Post
I’m at the packed gate right now....And an Alaska non stop to Las Vegas would be nice.



Adding more flights before a SAN remodel isn't going to help a packed Circle of Death.

Originally Posted by diver858 View Post
^^
Delta (operated by OO) is currently the only real option SAN-LAS (I don't consider NK or WN), would be great for AS to add a couple of flights per day to the mix, up the ante in the battles with DL, WN.
You might not consider it, but the WN/NK capacity does affect the market. 17 daily departures split among WN/NK/DL means it's not an uncrowded market yearning for extra capacity (plus I imagine WN/NK will try and nuke the yields with $29 fares if AS shows up). I imagine at some point AS will throw an RJ or two at it once they've sorted out the issues with QX, especially if T1 becomes a bit more hospitable to an AS expansion. DL has a few of those oddballs in CA (SJC/SAN-LAS) that I imagine AS would like to pick off for their own purposes of expansion at SJC/SAN (and it would make a nice tit-for-tat for DL expansion at SEA).

Last edited by eponymous_coward; Jan 29, 18 at 12:08 pm
eponymous_coward is online now  
Old Jan 29, 18, 12:43 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: NorCal
Posts: 655
Originally Posted by diver858 View Post
^^
Delta (operated by OO) is currently the only real option SAN-LAS (I don't consider NK or WN), would be great for AS to add a couple of flights per day to the mix, up the ante in the battles with DL, WN.
Just curious, why don't you consider Southwest on a relatively short flight to Vegas?
codex57 is offline  
Old Jan 29, 18, 1:33 pm
  #7  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: CHA, MAN;
Programs: Delta DM 1 MM; HH Diam,Hz PC,
Posts: 11,081
Originally Posted by beckoa View Post
Ahem, time for the SAN Alaska Lounge?
Indeed. I only found out last week that SAN has a Skyclub .
GRALISTAIR is offline  
Old Jan 29, 18, 1:38 pm
  #8  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: West Coast, Best Coast
Programs: Flying whoever is most convenient
Posts: 15,865
the only thing worse than the AS terminal at SAN is the WN terminal at SAN
PV_Premier is offline  
Old Jan 29, 18, 5:10 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Programs: Watergate
Posts: 91
It's shameful when a newspaper (even the blog section) can't proof its articles for grammatical correctness.

Just slightly more shameful than to fly SW.
RichardNixon is offline  
Old Jan 30, 18, 5:16 am
  #10  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Carlsbad, CA
Programs: United Gold (Million Miler), Alaska MVP
Posts: 178
Originally Posted by diver858 View Post
^^
Delta (operated by OO) is currently the only real option SAN-LAS (I don't consider NK or WN), would be great for AS to add a couple of flights per day to the mix, up the ante in the battles with DL, WN.
As long a as Cal Jet is surviving I will fly out of Carlsbad to Las Vegas. I hope they make it!
buzglyd is offline  
Old Feb 3, 18, 8:54 am
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: La Jolla, Ca
Programs: AA 2MM LT PLT; AS MVP Gold; HHonors Diamond; IHG PLT
Posts: 3,076
Originally Posted by codex57 View Post
Just curious, why don't you consider Southwest on a relatively short flight to Vegas?
Since you asked:
1. Inability to reserve a premium seat, even at a premium price - I am 6'2" tall.
2. Inability to standby for an earlier flight on the same day - requires purchase of a new ticket for non-elites (latter was not the case for the many years I was an A-lister)
3. Boarding process - feels like a kindergartner going to the rest room
From my perspective, WN started the race to the bottom, by convincing budget-minded travelers (most of the US, world) to compromise on comfort and convenience "for relatively short flights", in exchange for a low fare. The rest is history...
DrAlex and SimonT007 like this.
diver858 is offline  
Old Feb 3, 18, 9:47 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 953
WN has 32 inch pitch. That's better than AS and all the legacies. I don't see how you can say they started the race to the bottom. And they still have the 2 free bag policies.
tphuang is offline  
Old Feb 3, 18, 11:51 am
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: La Jolla, Ca
Programs: AA 2MM LT PLT; AS MVP Gold; HHonors Diamond; IHG PLT
Posts: 3,076
Originally Posted by tphuang View Post
WN has 32 inch pitch. That's better than AS and all the legacies. I don't see how you can say they started the race to the bottom. And they still have the 2 free bag policies.
I was asked for my opinion, gave 3 specific factors I consider important; had NOTHING to do with standard seat pitch or check baggage policies, unsure of the incessant need to promote WN, other carriers in the AS forum. I value the ability to reserve an exit row or premium economy seat at booking, chance at a first class upgrade - one of the primary reasons I choose to remain loyal to AA and AS (will leave the subject of IROPS interlining benefits for another day).
I was in Northern California on business this past week, did some wine tasting in the Lodi area on the way to Sacramento (highly recommended, BTW). There was little time to pack the 4 bottles of wine purchased along the way, only had a 12-bottle cardboard wine case from my last stop. Upon arrival at the AS counter in SMF, the gate agents were super friendly, reminded me of the AS policy to check one case of wine for free (not an issue, as I am already MVPG, hold the AS credit card), took the time to add packing materials to secure the bottles on the box, tape it carefully, cover it in more than 1 dozen "fragile", "special handling " labels - all done while I was walking to the gate - for an upgraded first class seat. Upon arrival in San DIego, the box was carefully placed in the oversized baggage area, not dropped on the carousel with other checked baggage. One can make the argument that I was an MVPG, sitting in first, but the ticket counter agents truly went above and beyond - something I would not have even ATTEMPTED with WN.
pbelmore and Snowdevil like this.
diver858 is offline  
Old Feb 3, 18, 12:15 pm
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: La Jolla, Ca
Programs: AA 2MM LT PLT; AS MVP Gold; HHonors Diamond; IHG PLT
Posts: 3,076
Originally Posted by tphuang View Post
WN has 32 inch pitch. That's better than AS and all the legacies. I don't see how you can say they started the race to the bottom. And they still have the 2 free bag policies.
Regarding my "race to the bottom" comment: You may be a bit too young to remember when a charismatic Herb Kelleher started WN. At the time, US airlines offered true service; not only was it routine to reserve a seat, my travel agent would be able to block the seat next to me, typically remained unoccupied in the unlikely event my first class upgrade did not clear. We whined about the quality of the food, but there would always be a tray with a warm meal.
Herb was the first to do away with all of that, in the interest of a low fare. Along with the low fares, WN was very generous with drink coupons, easy award travel, ability to make free same day changes. Over time, his successor - bean counter Gary Kelly - continues to whittle away at the benefits and raised fares, while running exceptional marketing campaigns to retain the perception of Herb's culture in the minds of customers. Airlines around the world eventually accepted the reality that while consumers would like service and amenities, Herb (and Kelly) demonstrated that most people care primarily about price, economic survival left no choice but to go along.
Snowdevil likes this.
diver858 is offline  
Old Feb 3, 18, 1:48 pm
  #15  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 1,466
Individual route differences in frequency/product aside, being an elite flyer on AS is going to be a vastly superior experience to WN. For non-elites though, WN offers a pretty compelling product, in addition to a much larger network in CA. AS, despite the #mostwestcoast attempt at bragging, has a long way to go to get in the same ballpark.
pbelmore likes this.
ucdtim17 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search Engine: