EDI to Belfast still running?

Old Feb 27, 04, 10:33 am
  #1  
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EDI to Belfast still running?

Was looking to book March 12th on ba.com and only available flights were via MAN.

A few future sample dates also did the same

Have I missed something?
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Old Feb 27, 04, 10:49 am
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I remember reading that the flights are now operated by a non-ba franchise - can't remember who.
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Old Feb 27, 04, 11:04 am
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It's now operated by flybe.
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Old Feb 27, 04, 11:16 am
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Flybe have just started operating EDI - BHD with approx 6 flights per day so it could be that they ahve picked up the ex-BA route. It never fails to amaze me how BA cannot make money out of a route while others can.

Take EDI-SOU for example. BA have operated this for a number of years using mostly Jungle Jets and the occasional Dash 8. The fares are a total rip-off with flexible flights costing 423. The availability of discounted fares was almost non existant, especially for the early morning and late evening flight.

Flybe started on this route in November using BAE146 and the new Dash Q800. Each time I have used the service loads have been excellent. The fares are very competitive with peak flights (Friday @ 17:40, Sunday @ 19:20) costing between 68 and 150 for a round trip.

So successful has the route been that they are adding an extra daily rotation. At the same time rumours are rife that BA will drop the route in the Spring. This is not a surprise. Despite facing tough price competion BA insisted on keeping the fares high. While I was paying 68 (my own money, noyt my companies) on Flybe, BA wanted 423. Who would you fly with? On the occasions that Sheena and I have used BA the loads have been light. On one evening flight earlier this year there were only 8 people on board.

Things have improved recently as BA have finally reacted and made more lower fare buckets available. They are even offering 68 returns, although this is only available Monday to Friday on the 12:15 SOU-EDI and the 14:35 EDI-SOU.

Flybe have proved there is a sizeable demand on this route. BA had a monopoly on the route for a long time but failed to capitalise and it looks as though their response will not be to try to compete but to run away.
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Old Feb 27, 04, 12:14 pm
  #5  
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I am not suprised at all by this... it seems that when BA wants to pull a domestic route they just over-price it until they can say it doesn't pay...

They did exactly the same with PLH/NQY ( )... when Ryanair came onto the NQY route they were at first competitive, I could always get a flight home to Plymouth for the weekend for 79/89/99 (I would never pay the rip-off 320 for 'C')... then they started the same scam we're now seeing on the shuttle routes of emptying the low buckets up to a week before departure, meaning you could never get a decent fare at short-ish notice.

They pulled the route and now Air Southwest (PLH based startup) are operating it with BA's old planes, into BA's old slots, even checkin at LGW is done by BA... very reasonable fares even at short-ish notice, and they are making money. Enough money to expand into 3 new routes this year...

Its crazy.

[This message has been edited by dnw (edited Feb 27, 2004).]
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Old Feb 27, 04, 12:42 pm
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<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by dnw:
then they started the same scam we're now seeing on the shuttle routes of emptying the low buckets up to a week before departure, meaning you could never get a decent fare at short-ish notice.

[This message has been edited by dnw (edited Feb 27, 2004).]
</font>
Is there not a trades discription thing here that is being broken.

I was pricing some tickets using the sabre tool and all the first three flights each day from EDI-LHR for the next two weeks are all J9 BC HC KC.

I went down to LHR a couple of weeks ago on the last flight of the day - only J available - and the A320 had about 40 people on it.

Madness.

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Old Feb 27, 04, 1:16 pm
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<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by Gaza:
Flybe have just started operating EDI - BHD with approx 6 flights per day</font>
Actually from the changeover (this weekend) Flybe will initially operate just 2 flights a day, both in the middle of the day and obviously a holding operation with an otherwise spare aircraft. From March 28 they change to 4 a day at proper business-oriented times. Shame they had to lose the impetus for a month.
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Old Feb 27, 04, 3:33 pm
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BA citiexpress EDI/BHD closes this week -end.The BA GLA/BHD closes at the end of March 04.
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Old Feb 28, 04, 5:06 am
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<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by edi-traveller:
Is there not a trades discription thing here that is being broken.

I was pricing some tickets using the sabre tool and all the first three flights each day from EDI-LHR for the next two weeks are all J9 BC HC KC.

I went down to LHR a couple of weeks ago on the last flight of the day - only J available - and the A320 had about 40 people on it.
</font>
Trades descriptions? No, not at all. You can't force BA to sell seats at a given price. Remember, the fare buckets are like chinese walls - they are quite moveable. 9 doesn't mean 9 seats at all. It means 90% chance of the bucket being available should you wish to book it. I've seen inventory disappear before my eyes...

It often makes more sense, and yields the airline far more money, to sell 5 seats at a very high flexible/late/must-travel fare, than to sell 20 seats at high discounts. It also means faster check-in, perhaps fewer cabin staff, less fuel, fewer baggage handlers etc. in variable costs.

In a word - more (or same) money, but lower costs. That's how airlines squeeze the last few pennies out. And that's why there's often less than 1% in the difference between massive losses and massive profits.

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Old Feb 28, 04, 10:54 am
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I don't agree.

If a fare type has a rule that states it has no advanced purchase requirement, yet that fare can NEVER (this being the important word) be purchased withing 1/2/3 days of the flight, irrespective of the true availability, the trade description act should come into play- leaving out relevent information (i.e. this stealth AP rule) is as bad as mis-informing.
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Old Feb 28, 04, 1:30 pm
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I see your point, but it won't wash legally. The fact is that those fares are just not for sale. And they can't be forced to sell a service they offer. Suppose it was the cheapest fare class... you wouldn't dispute it not being available. We've all experienced fare classes opening and closing for no apparent reason (BA's whim )

If they wanted to, they could sell it under the rules, but they chose not to.. and that is that. Buckets bear no relationship to seat numbers, other than the fact that as long as one bucket is open, there is at least one seat available.
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Old Feb 28, 04, 4:01 pm
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<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by GoldCircle:
We've all experienced fare classes opening and closing for no apparent reason (BA's whim )</font>
I totally agree and I understand the behemoth that is inventory management as well as I could hope to, but I still believe that this particular situation is an abuse of the 'subject to capacity' get-out-clause. If, as appears, they have made a conscious policy not to offer x fare classes for sale within a certain period before departure, they should be forced to write it into the public rules.

[This message has been edited by dnw (edited Feb 28, 2004).]
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Old Feb 29, 04, 5:51 am
  #13  
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<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by dnw:
They pulled the route and now Air Southwest (PLH based startup) are operating it with BA's old planes, into BA's old slots, even checkin at LGW is done by BA[This message has been edited by dnw (edited Feb 27, 2004).]</font>
How is the Air Southwest service? Trying it for the first time in a couple of weeks.

Their cooperation/handover is so close that BA placed a station managed on free six month secondment to PLH for Air Southwest, and the crew are the same as before (except those that opted to move to LGW).

My understanding is that the route was dropped as Citiexpress was dropping the Dash 8 and a jet can't land at PLH. ****ed shame though, no more chance of seat 2B for me
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Old Feb 29, 04, 6:38 am
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<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by Lux:
****ed shame though, no more chance of seat 2B for me </font>
I wonder how many times I sat next to you in 2A?... I always go for the window as I love the approach views into PLH- it really is a CITY airport!

The thing I will miss more is the priority boarding straight onto the apron from the Exec Club lounge... it was usually only me and one other in there, that was better than turning left for being made to feel important

I haven't tried WOW yet but my mate next door has and said its almost exactly as before with the exception of paying for food. Sutton Harbour have also totally renovated the terminal (funny how that was never done until they took over the airline) but again I've yet to see it.

The only thing that has noticeably improved is punctuality- they were officially the most punctual airline at LGW in the last figures! PLH/NQY turnarounds were always prompt but BA did have a bad habit of pissing around at LGW waiting for connections / a despatcher to be free / a bus to turn up etc etc...

You're right about the Dash8's, but they could have gone for another 6 months even then and they could have maintained NQY with a CitiExpress jungle jet... loads from there were always higher than PLH... and if BA had marketed properly in the locality as Air Southwest has done, maybe we would have had that runway extension that is now back on the cards again...

[This message has been edited by dnw (edited Feb 29, 2004).]
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