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[Speculation] Possibility of Lie-Flat Seats on Transcon Routes?

[Speculation] Possibility of Lie-Flat Seats on Transcon Routes?

Old Dec 29, 20, 8:51 pm
  #151  
 
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Originally Posted by OhDoctor View Post
that can work, but those extra ~12 hours are a luxury, particularly if your travel window is measured in a few days,
In theory, yes, and sometimes the long red eye in a lie flat seat is a better choice. But Iíve found that in practice, leaving mid-day doesnít usually cost me more useful time than leaving in late afternoon or evening, nor does arriving toward dinner time rather than late morning or early afternoon. YMMV (and mine sometimes does too ó Iím happy to have the AA option back).
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Old Dec 30, 20, 12:20 am
  #152  
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Originally Posted by OhDoctor View Post
that can work, but those extra ~12 hours are a luxury, particularly if your travel window is measured in a few days,
Aside from the "I'm using Hawaii as a mileage run turn" (fairly infamous over on the BA forum) and (limited) business travel, this probably doesn't describe most Hawaii travel from places other than the West Coast of the US (and even there). Also, B6's planes aren't going to make it from their East Coast hubs until they have the European XLRs (and I would wonder how many fuel stops you'd get in SFO/LAX in the winter going westbound).

Also... someone is gonna bring this up, surely:

https://leehamnews.com/2020/12/29/ho...-path-forward/

I'm still going with this though:

AS doesn't want an A321 premium transcon subfleet, even if they could realistically have one by converting the A320neo order to A321neos, because:
  • They can get 737Max planes for a song because Boeing is in deep guacamole.
  • A321neos, not so much, because Airbus didn't just go through having their planes fall out of the sky because the manufacturer screwed up.
  • AS would incur significant expense in converting/equipping them to a Mint-esque configuration.
  • AS would go from flying a plane with a 16F/24 Y+/150 Y (that's 190 pax for you following at home) config to something more like 16 F/24 Y+/119 Y (same seating capacity as a B6 Mint plane, 159- so 41 less pax), and, as has been repeatedly stated... AS's markets don't support premium transcon like B6's do, with the exceptions of SFO/LAX-NYC (which is an extremely important, relevant market for SFO and LAX, but compare and contrast with SEA, SJC or SAN- if you need help noticing the difference between the first two and the next three, it's a city that rhymes with "Blue Pork").
  • They actually seem to like the A321neo for what it is right now, a way to shoehorn more passengers into various airports in a cost efficient way, like DCA or KOA. Much like how B6 actually has a non-Mint A321neo fleet (that plane seats 190 pax, btw- it's almost like B6 knows there are markets where an A321 that doesn't have Mint makes sense).
  • That's probably not enough to get them to buy 30 more though. Not when Boeing is selling MAX planes for cheap, and AS doesn't have THAT many places where the A321neo is a Goldilocks plane.
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Last edited by eponymous_coward; Dec 30, 20 at 12:28 am
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Old Dec 30, 20, 9:40 am
  #153  
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Originally Posted by Repooc17 View Post
This has been the case for UA even during the pandemic. UA has been flying multiple widebodies between EWR and LAX/SFO daily, especially during the holidays. Heck, for much of December and into next month, UA is running two redeye flights from SFO to EWR, both widebodies, with scheduled departures within the hour from each other. From my perspective, UA is the lone carrier running a decent frequency of cross country nonstop flight schedule, right now I think at least 4 daily flights each between EWR/LAX and EWR/SFO. UA has the network to utilize these widebodies onward to international destinations without (many of) them sitting on the ground - e.g. SYD/AKL, ICN/PVG, NRT, GRU, even if mostly just as cargo operations.
Respectfully, that wasn't my point, because you're still talking about a discrete premium market. You could fly UA in a sleeperette seat (not full flat, no one had them yet) SFO to HNL/ORD/JFK/BOS/IAD/MIA on at least one frequency per day, and maybe I'm missing a route or two.

Dead cat horse or not, AS isn't going to have a subfleet for a few routes. It already has the best "non premium" F cabin pitch. Three of its hubs can't support the product, guaranteed (ANC/SEA/PDX).

When the price is right, I'll fly the competition in the lie flat. But if the price is right for me to do that, it probably isn't a price that is earning the airline much, if any, money.

Ok, at least 8.75 lives gone. Cat horse, RIP soon.
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Old Dec 30, 20, 10:01 am
  #154  
 
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Originally Posted by Eastbay1K View Post
Dead cat horse or not, AS isn't going to have a subfleet for a few routes. It already has the best "non premium" F cabin pitch. Three of its hubs can't support the product, guaranteed (ANC/SEA/PDX).
And both their old and new F recliners are more comfortable than the old UA ones. I haven't flown UA F in a couple years so I don't know if they have any F seat updates.
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Old Dec 30, 20, 10:34 am
  #155  
 
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Originally Posted by Eastbay1K View Post
When he price is right, I'll fly the competition in the lie flat. But if the price is right for me to do that, it probably isn't a price that is earning the airline much, if any, money.
as it turns out, i was prompted to revive the horse by my upcoming SEA-JFK on AS in F being more expensive than B6 in mint. which struck me rather like ordering a sandwich at a deli, then paying a premium for them to step on it first before serving it to me.
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Old Dec 30, 20, 11:36 am
  #156  
 
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So fly B6 on this trip. It's not unusual for a carrier's price on a route to be uncompetitive for one reason or another.
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Old Dec 30, 20, 11:53 am
  #157  
 
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I had the same experience with Delta One for my flight yesterday. A flatbed on a transcon was so nice. Even though the food was nonexistent I would still choose it over Alaska because of how comfortable it was.
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Old Dec 30, 20, 12:10 pm
  #158  
 
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Originally Posted by OhDoctor View Post
as it turns out, i was prompted to revive the horse by my upcoming SEA-JFK on AS in F being more expensive than B6 in mint. which struck me rather like ordering a sandwich at a deli, then paying a premium for them to step on it first before serving it to me.
If AS can charge a premium over the Mint price, why in blazes should they take the capacity hit of installing Mint?

Iím not saying you should pay that premium; fairly obviously, Mint matters to you and you shouldnít. But thatís not a reason for AS to install a Mint competitor, since it seems the market doesnít share your approach.
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Old Dec 30, 20, 1:41 pm
  #159  
 
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One other thing to keep in mind is the use of a premium cabin to drive revenue versus to drive loyalty. Alaska has shared in briefings that F upgrades are managed to encourage loyal travelers to roll the dice on upgrades versus using F to attract high revenue passengers. This of course differs from wide body options where the premium cabins might be all the money an airline is making. For AS the revenue is in Main and we keep booking for work or personal travel hoping for a goodie. The Mint example above being cheaper is probably more AS having decided that seat is worth more for loyalty unless some one really wants to shell out for it.

RIP cat horse.
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Old Dec 31, 20, 2:31 am
  #160  
 
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Comfort&Price vs. Frequency: Jetblue Problem

I recognize that B6 is the airline that has pushed the envelope for lie-flat transcon at an affordable price, however, one huge caveat, is dismal flight frequency of twice weekly in January 2021 from SEA; just Sunday and Thursday only. There are NO flights any other day of the week, in/out of SEA or PDX to JFK. One added frequency in February, and more added in March. Of course B6 continues to have daily flights from California. AS, however, has daily service from SEA, but reduced frequency 4X weekly from SFO in Jan.

Should B6 flight cancellation occur for your January flights to PDX or SEA, you likely need to wait a few days for the next flight. AS on the other hand, will have options of different routing or partner flight.

Jiburi
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Last edited by jiburi; Dec 31, 20 at 4:54 am
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