Full Flights Everywhere!

Old Jul 8, 05, 10:34 am
  #1  
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Exclamation Full Flights Everywhere!

Every flight I've been on in the past two months has been booked 100% full. I've had to resort to other airlines if I have to book within 14 days of the flight (most of mine are short notice) And I'm flexible on time of day, so it isn't just the 7:00am and 6:00pm flights.

An example yesterday was PHX/BOS return on July 18/July 20 - a couple of center seats and that's it!

I'm 6'4" with broad shoulders, so center and window seats are out for me. I had to take a window seat a couple of months ago due to a "must attend" meeting and had two guys next to me that each weighed no less than 250 lbs. I was crushed up against the wall (no window in that seat) so I ended up having a panic attack - sweat pouring out every pore, pounding heart. I never had one before, it was miserable! I've decided that I will never again fly unless I can get an aisle seat or FC.

For my BOS meeting I ended up booking FC on all four legs with AA via DFW at a price $10 more than HP Coach direct to BOS. My employer has approved FC if it is within $100 of coach on one of our approved carriers

The good news is that HP's business is up, I just would love to see their profits rise so they can add some capacity. Of course, if the US Air merger goes the way some pundits are predicting, all of those flights may be much more open......
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Old Jul 8, 05, 2:16 pm
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It has been the same on my PHL-PHX trips for the last year. We're talking almost every single week, full flights. However, this week I flew on 7/5 to PHL and returned last night. If either plane was even close to half full I was seeing a mirage. Heck, even 3 first class seats went unclaimed on the 7/5 flight and at least one of the others was taken by a FA so it was completely non-rev. It had been so long since I had seen that I was just shocked.

Luckily I should be done with my PHL client and other than a trip to BOS (connecting to SNN for some well earned R&R) I won't be flying again for a couple of months. That always makes me happy.

Last edited by stewabr; Jul 8, 05 at 2:55 pm
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Old Jul 8, 05, 2:42 pm
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Must have been the holiday that caused the lack of passengers. My wife flies HP to PHL two or three times per quarter and though she can plan out 21 days in advance, end up with rotten seats more times than not. She's tall so has to be careful where she ends up on those long flights.

All three of us are flying HP to SNA for vacation and we booked 2 months ago, still ended up with seats way in the back.

It's tough to sympathize with the airlines when they are packing the planes with low fare passengers. Heck we prefer to fly F for personal travel and gladly pay for it, but most of the time it is sold out before we get a shot at it on HP.

Not griping, but question why they can't raise fares $50/round trip to help their bottom line. Are people really that cheap?
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Old Jul 8, 05, 6:39 pm
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Originally Posted by KevAZ
Not griping, but question why they can't raise fares $50/round trip to help their bottom line. Are people really that cheap?
Well, fare levels are definitely up for the summer period (late May to mid-August). Airplanes are most definitely full. The only empty seats I've seen are on 7/4 in the evening from SEA to PHX. Unfortunately, fuel costs are skyrocketing. However, if airlines can't come close to break even with these higher fares, then the industry is in serious trouble.

People are extremely resistant to large fare increases. However, I say raise the fares $50-$75, provide me with a halfway decent light snack on longer flights, and I would be a very happy customer.
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Old Jul 8, 05, 7:43 pm
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I've been doing some expedia-ing lately and HP seems to be the highest in prices. AS is the lowest, but then again these are mainly W/NW/SW North American flights.. who knows.
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Old Jul 10, 05, 6:11 am
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Originally Posted by Insiderdude
I've been doing some expedia-ing lately and HP seems to be the highest in prices. AS is the lowest, but then again these are mainly W/NW/SW North American flights.. who knows.
For some reason Expedia always seems to price higher. I usually use the website to book HP or go through Dream Maps first when booking another airline.
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Old Jul 13, 05, 8:17 pm
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As an example, we're in SoCal for vacation and the cost for three of us to fly to SNA and rent a car for a week isn't much more than driving over from PHX. It appears that HP is chasing the WN low fare crowd by keeping their prices so low.

The pricing seems to be set for the lowest possible taker rather than raising the bar somewhat and flying a little lighter but higher revenue.

Again, no gripes if they would create more F seating and let me buy them! ALL of the carriers in the West seem to cater to the low income crowd and their bottom lines reflect it. WN is the exception because they have always been the low price carrier and have designed their infrastructure to support that strategy.
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Old Jul 15, 05, 11:01 am
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Hello ...as a Flight attndt for HP, trust me the FULL flights with Low paying passengers are sometimes a nightmare to work...most of these low paying pax act is if they have never been outside in the public...carrying on those plastic garbage bags for luggage, and expecting FC service and then complain that they paid $39 rtp and they didnt receive a snack! I say be responsible and pack something to eat. I wish the airlines would just charge a fuel surcharge to help get this industry back on its feet.
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Old Jul 15, 05, 4:45 pm
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Originally Posted by Jetsetter2Ord
Hello ...as a Flight attndt for HP, trust me the FULL flights with Low paying passengers are sometimes a nightmare to work...most of these low paying pax act is if they have never been outside in the public...carrying on those plastic garbage bags for luggage, and expecting FC service and then complain that they paid $39 rtp and they didnt receive a snack! I say be responsible and pack something to eat. I wish the airlines would just charge a fuel surcharge to help get this industry back on its feet.
No offense, but isnt the SW model what HP is? A couple of years ago I flew into Pdx-Phx with HP and when I got on they hurled a bag of peanuts at me (at the door!) and that was the end of the interaction until we reached Phoenix. I just figured that America West was a LLC no frills carrier. I have not flown them since due to that flight. Has something changed? Other than the assigned seat (I think it was assigned.) the flight was awful.
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Old Jul 15, 05, 6:17 pm
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Originally Posted by Derrico
No offense, but isnt the SW model what HP is? A couple of years ago I flew into Pdx-Phx with HP and when I got on they hurled a bag of peanuts at me (at the door!) and that was the end of the interaction until we reached Phoenix. I just figured that America West was a LLC no frills carrier. I have not flown them since due to that flight. Has something changed? Other than the assigned seat (I think it was assigned.) the flight was awful.
No, it's not really the SW model. HP is going for more business-friendly every day fares in what I would call a quasi-low-cost-carrier model. (They call themselves the country's largest "full service, low-cost carrier.) There are no Saturday night stay requirements, you can buy one-way tickets for roughly half the cost of a round-trip, they assign seats, have first class, which you can buy at a substantial reduction compared to the majors, and they offer food on board longer flights (free in first class and they sell fairly decent, relatively inexpesive food in the back). HP has broader partnerships for frequent flyer earning and redemption, primarily internationally. You don't find these "frills" and FF partner benefits on SW.

I'm on HP planes every week and I can honestly say I've never had anyone hurl peanuts at me as I boarded (well, at least not a HP employee!). On the PDX-PHX route you'd typically get a free non-alcoholic beverage and that bag of peanuts thrown in your lap as you sit in your seat -- but (almost, apprently) never at the door.
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Old Jul 16, 05, 10:29 am
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Derrico,

You must have been on a SW flight thinking u were on HP, WE WOULD NEVER throw or hurl a bag of peanuts at the door while you boarded. No offense to you, but no matter how much one pays for their seat, what kind of service is provided, we can never please everyone...some people will gripe no matter what and some try to even gripe to get something for free even after they have been out of line and rude to the crew or a fellow passenger. Your ticket is a mode of transportation to get you SAFELY from point A to point B, you get what you pay for...even if its less than a greyhound bus seat (as most SW fares are).
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Old Jul 16, 05, 10:53 pm
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Originally Posted by Jetsetter2Ord
Derrico,
You must have been on a SW flight thinking u were on HP, WE WOULD NEVER throw or hurl a bag of peanuts at the door while you boarded.
Perhaps I was being over dramatic. I think the peanut/snack bag was on a card table near the entrance to the plane. People were picking them up prior to getting on the plane, and I think some were tossed from the FA/GAs. HP has never done this? Maybe it was something HP tried for a few months? I know SW and I will not fly SW period, so I know it was not WN, and I was flying to Phoenix. I am pretty sure it was HP.

In any case I am glad to hear that does not happen these days. Perhaps I will give them a try again.

you get what you pay for...even if its less than a greyhound bus seat (as most SW fares are).
Yep which is why I will always pay more (or sometimes less) to avoid Southwest. I will rent a car and drive five hours rather than live though the return to the "school bus feeling" one gets with a "C" SW boarding pass.
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Old Jul 17, 05, 8:46 am
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Originally Posted by Derrico
I will rent a car and drive five hours rather than live though the return to the "school bus feeling" one gets with a "C" SW boarding pass.
My school bus rides were never that bad!

I call them the Heifer Hauler because you are treated like cattle being led to the slaughterhouse. Also the average weight of a WN flier is 80 lbs more than any other airline passenger. MOOOOO!
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Old Jul 17, 05, 12:40 pm
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Originally Posted by KevAZ
My school bus rides were never that bad!

I call them the Heifer Hauler because you are treated like cattle being led to the slaughterhouse. Also the average weight of a WN flier is 80 lbs more than any other airline passenger. MOOOOO!
I agree with both!!!

And to mention, both times I was placed on WN involuntarily (HP delayed thus I would take WN rather than miss a connection) and they were last minute "C" passes ... both had the SSSS on it.
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