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Walsh Wants British Airways Merger with American Airlines

Walsh Wants British Airways Merger with American Airlines

Old Oct 9, 05, 3:27 am
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Exclamation Walsh Wants British Airways Merger with American Airlines

http://observer.guardian.co.uk/busin...587822,00.html

Walsh wants to deepen ties between BA and what he sees as the strongest US player by co-ordinating the airlines' pricing, scheduling and flight patterns. This could be the first step towards reviving the idea of a full merger between the two carriers.

American and BA, both members of the Oneworld airline alliance, have tried twice before to build closer ties but have been thwarted by US regulators on competition grounds.

Being discussed, also on another forum:

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/showt...ferrerid=24296
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Old Oct 9, 05, 12:58 pm
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Originally Posted by apudme
American and BA, both members of the Oneworld airline alliance, have tried twice before to build closer ties but have been thwarted by US regulators on competition grounds.
Excuse my ignorance of all the issues at play, but when was the last attempted tie-up? Has anything drastically changed that would make a new attempt more successful?
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Old Oct 9, 05, 1:15 pm
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Walsh being interviewed on BBC Radio 5 Live at the moment. Doesn't want a merger but is seeking better co-operation and access to connections.
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Old Oct 9, 05, 1:58 pm
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It was thanks to the last major merger attempt that resulted in BAEC not earning miles and TPs on AA on trans-atlantic routes and vice versa.

Mind you, as anyone actually paid close attention to the routes that AA fly in the US. Its OK for flights from JFK to SFO or LAX. However, internally, it does not really have a really good domestic timetable. Really bad for domestic flights along the West Coast and most connections to Cental/Latin America are from Miami not LAX.

Most importantly, AA tend to operate its domestic flights except for trans-continental flight use LGA leaving international flights from JFK. Thats the problem with any BA / AA link.
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Old Oct 9, 05, 2:01 pm
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Originally Posted by KenJohn
Most importantly, AA tend to operate its domestic flights except for trans-continental flight use LGA leaving international flights from JFK. Thats the problem with any BA / AA link.
Just wondering whether BA fly to any US destinations other than JFK? Or why AA has just spent a lot of money building a new T8/9 complex at JFK? Or how AA can bust the perimeter restriction at LGA?
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Old Oct 9, 05, 2:47 pm
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Originally Posted by KenJohn

Mind you, as anyone actually paid close attention to the routes that AA fly in the US. Its OK for flights from JFK to SFO or LAX. However, internally, it does not really have a really good domestic timetable. Really bad for domestic flights along the West Coast and most connections to Cental/Latin America are from Miami not LAX.

Most importantly, AA tend to operate its domestic flights except for trans-continental flight use LGA leaving international flights from JFK. Thats the problem with any BA / AA link.
AA has a great domestic timetable.

BA flies to a lot more cities in NA than LA and NY. The AA connections are pretty good in ORD, DFW, and MIA for example.

Why would you want to fly all the way to LA to make a connection to Latin America? You can get to many of the same cities through DFW if you can't stand MIA. Its not like LAX is a great airport. I guess you just must enjoy the hike outside between terminals.

Why would the standard for a good NA partner for BA be a short hop network up the west coast? As a practical matter only WN would fit that standard and they would be a rotten partner for BA. For example, they would not interline baggage with them. BA already flies to the major cities nonstop. Sure, you can't land in LAX and connect to an AA flight to Fresno, but you can get to Fresno from ORD.

Your arguments are so off base I question your motives.
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Old Oct 9, 05, 3:34 pm
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Originally Posted by millionmiler
AA has a great domestic timetable.

BA flies to a lot more cities in NA than LA and NY. The AA connections are pretty good in ORD, DFW, and MIA for example.

Your arguments are so off base I question your motives.
I totally agree.

I have flown AA quite a lot this year (and will be in the next few weeks coast to coast).

Flying into DFW for me with BA is ideal as DFW is not too far from either West of East, no more than 2-3 hours usually.

Plus, I flew into ORD recently and was surprised how modern AA's terminal was - more modern than DFW in fact. Furthermore, my flights (I did around six) were not in the slightest bit delayed from ORD, which I was dreading. I was very pleasantly surprised.

Any aggreement which would lift the stupid non-earing miles on AA or BA across the pond, I would be in favour of!
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Old Oct 9, 05, 3:48 pm
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Indeed, DFW is frustrating close to most US cities. Well, when I say frustrating it is, of course, in the context of constructing a YUP run
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Old Oct 9, 05, 3:59 pm
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There is no regulatory obstruction to closer timetable harmonisation for connections. One might have been forgiven for thinking that was the purpose of the OneWorld alliance.

They could start by trying to offer a connection to Belize without having to overnight in MIA on the way there.

I think that investigating closer tie ups over the Atlantic is tilting at windmills. I don't think either regulator will tolerate it, without massive slot release at LHR.
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Old Oct 9, 05, 4:24 pm
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Originally Posted by KenJohn
Mind you, as anyone actually paid close attention to the routes that AA fly in the US. Its OK for flights from JFK to SFO or LAX. However, internally, it does not really have a really good domestic timetable. Really bad for domestic flights along the West Coast and most connections to Cental/Latin America are from Miami not LAX.

Most importantly, AA tend to operate its domestic flights except for trans-continental flight use LGA leaving international flights from JFK. Thats the problem with any BA / AA link.
MIA is much closer than LAX to much of Latin America; if you want to fly from the UK to LAX in order to go south, why not go all the way and fly via Japan?

All airlines use LGA for domestic (except for a few widebody transcon and international-feeder flights at JFK); this is hardly news. AA actually just started flying ORD-JFK on a regional jet. But who cares. In the good old days one changed at JFK to go anywhere in the US; no one does that now. There are many other options. AA's main hubs are ORD and DFW, not JFK and LAX.

Last edited by kalia960; Oct 9, 05 at 4:58 pm
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Old Oct 9, 05, 4:29 pm
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Originally Posted by kalia960
In the good old days one changed at JFK to go anywhere in the US; no one does that now.
Quite - although I think those not familiar with the New York city area don't realise quite how far away JFK is actually located!

LGA much easier!
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Old Oct 9, 05, 4:58 pm
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Originally Posted by The Saint

They could start by trying to offer a connection to Belize without having to overnight in MIA on the way there.
You have a point about poor connections to BZE from London. The problem is that if the round trip was later then the return would arrive in MIA and DFW too late to take any domestic connections forcing everyone to overnight. That would be suicide for the flight loads. The alternative of having the plane spend the night in BZE wouldn't be cost effective,

Last edited by millionmiler; Oct 9, 05 at 5:03 pm
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Old Oct 9, 05, 5:10 pm
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[QUOTE=flyclub]

Plus, I flew into ORD recently and was surprised how modern AA's terminal was - more modern than DFW in fact. Furthermore, my flights (I did around six) were not in the slightest bit delayed from ORD, which I was dreading. I was very pleasantly surprised.

QUOTE]

AA is moving into a new terminal soon at DFW, so it will be nicer than ORD shortly. The new train between terminals has greatly improved the connections there already.

DFW tends to get a lot of rain which can shut down the airport. ORD gets snow of course, but you usually have time to react if ORD is going to close. The statistics say that there are more delays at ORD, but my personal experience is the opposite.

I tend to fly though ORD in the summer and DFW in the winter.
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Old Oct 9, 05, 5:43 pm
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Originally Posted by millionmiler
Your arguments are so off base I question your motives.
My motives are in respect of my own travel arrangements. I am not a long haul business traveller. I am fortunate to be a premium leisure traveller (F or C) who likes to fly direct to the West Coast non-stop and then travel around the West Coast while earning miles and tier points. I travel to West Coast about twice a year (and I do about 2 trips to the East Coast as well).

I miss the regular shuttle between LAX/SFO and LAS which is a favourite destination of mine down from hourly to just 3/4 a day. I am now forced to fly TED or America West (which I now no longer will since their termination of agreement with BA and VS). As such I only have a silver status on BA rather than a Gold. In fact, I have find I have to catch a few United flights around the US because I do not find appropriately timed AA flights. I do so as a last resort.

That is the motive for my comments and I take exception to your insinuation. While the rest of your posting give a balance debate, your final comment makes this an attack on me which I believe is unfair and brings down the whole tone and general friendliness of this board. I have been a regular poster here and like to think I give a balance view (both good and bad) but the view is of course from my own travel persepctive. Kalia960's comment that AA really viewed ORD and DFW as hubs as opposed to JFK makes perfect sense and is how discussion on the board should be conducted.

While I like AA service, I dislike its timetables. While I dislike United service, its timetable and routes are far more comprehensive to cater to my travel plans.

Last edited by KenJohn; Oct 9, 05 at 5:54 pm
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Old Oct 9, 05, 6:18 pm
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Originally Posted by KenJohn
I am fortunate to be a premium leisure traveller (F or C) who likes to fly direct to the West Coast non-stop and then travel around the West Coast while earning miles and tier points.
...
Kalia960's comment that AA really viewed ORD and DFW as hubs as opposed to JFK makes perfect sense and is how discussion on the board should be conducted.

While I like AA service, I dislike its timetables.
With respect, if you didn't know that DFW and ORD are AA's main hubs, you really can't have been reading very much of their timetables or have found out very much about the airline.

Your complaint seems to be that they don't have a great deal of service where you want to be - which happens to be in a part of the country in which they don't have a great deal of service. If it doesn't work for you, fair enough. But you can't reasonably trash the rest of the airline just because it doesn't work for your travel needs in a limited part of the US.
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