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Delta Nonstop LAX-ORD (or any airport in LA and Chicago)

Delta Nonstop LAX-ORD (or any airport in LA and Chicago)

Old May 17, 18, 8:45 pm
  #1  
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Delta Nonstop LAX-ORD (or any airport in LA and Chicago)

LA is the second largest US city.

Chicago is the third.

Does it seem insane to anyone else that Delta doesn't have a nonstop between them? Not even one per day?

I'm assuming there's some good historical reason for this that I'm not aware of. Can someone enlighten me?
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Old May 17, 18, 8:51 pm
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Spirit promised to be stop flying cheap anywhere else if Delta gave them ORD LAX route.
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Old May 17, 18, 8:57 pm
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Originally Posted by josephstern View Post
LA is the second largest US city.

Chicago is the third.

Does it seem insane to anyone else that Delta doesn't have a nonstop between them? Not even one per day?

I'm assuming there's some good historical reason for this that I'm not aware of. Can someone enlighten me?
Competition...lots of competition on the Chicago to LA routes. Delta can use their planes on other routes to make more money so that is what they do.
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Old May 17, 18, 8:57 pm
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Originally Posted by josephstern View Post
LA is the second largest US city.

Chicago is the third.

Does it seem insane to anyone else that Delta doesn't have a nonstop between them? Not even one per day?

I'm assuming there's some good historical reason for this that I'm not aware of. Can someone enlighten me?
Doesn't seem insane to me. ORD is a hub for both AA and UA, and a focus city for low-cost carrier Spirit; all three of those airlines offer LAX-ORD nonstops. In addition, Southwest is the largest carrier at Midway, and offers LAX-MDW nonstops.

DL probably figures that it would be too difficult to make more of a profit in that market than it could make by deploying its aircraft and crews on other routes.
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Old May 17, 18, 9:28 pm
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OK - I see all of that, but doesn't Delta want corporate contracts to lock in business flyers, and wouldn't this route help them there, even if they have low frequency?

How many companies want this route nonstop, so their travel departments do deals with United or American instead?
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Old May 17, 18, 9:48 pm
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Originally Posted by josephstern View Post
OK - I see all of that, but doesn't Delta want corporate contracts to lock in business flyers, and wouldn't this route help them there, even if they have low frequency?

How many companies want this route nonstop, so their travel departments do deals with United or American instead?
How

How many Chicago based companies have a deal with DL and not with AA or UA? UA is the biggest airline in Chicago and IIRC AA is in LA. So, why would DL fly a plane between two cities where they will get killed by the competition?
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Old May 17, 18, 9:57 pm
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Is there a nonstop to Milwaukee from the LAX area on DL? If not, how about Indianapolis or even Madison, depending on how you define Chicago airport. Except for construction on the interstate between Milwaukee and the Wisconsin-Illinois border, this could actually be faster for the northern suburbs, especially as the airport is located on the south side of Milwaukee.
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Old May 17, 18, 10:01 pm
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
Is there a nonstop to Milwaukee from the LAX area on DL? If not, how about Indianapolis or even Madison, depending on how you define Chicago airport. Except for construction on the interstate between Milwaukee and the Wisconsin-Illinois border, this could actually be faster for the northern suburbs, especially as the airport is located on the south side of Milwaukee.
Delta does have IND, but not MKE.
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Old May 17, 18, 10:04 pm
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Originally Posted by josephstern View Post
Delta does have IND, but not MKE.
IIRC IND is a focus city for DL.
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Old May 18, 18, 5:12 am
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Delta is one of six carriers between DEN and LAX. If enough corporate contracts demand that DL fly LAX-ORD, it will.
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Old May 18, 18, 7:27 am
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It just doesn't make sense. LAX is cramped and why would they waste space on a flight with so much competition?
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Old May 18, 18, 9:21 am
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Originally Posted by jackvogt View Post
It just doesn't make sense. LAX is cramped and why would they waste space on a flight with so much competition?
See my note re: DEN-LAX above. For 4Q2017, the market metro Chicago to Metro LA was about 25% larger than DEN-LAX. Just a few domestic markets are larger. It's not implausible that Delta will start ORD-LAX.
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Old May 18, 18, 9:47 am
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Part of the problem is that to compete effectively in such a market for business travelers, DL would need to operate at least about four nonstops a day. [You see this problem with some of the longer routes AS has introduced. A once-a-day flight is useless if it's at the wrong time of day for one's needs.]
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Old May 18, 18, 10:11 am
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Originally Posted by 3Cforme View Post
See my note re: DEN-LAX above. For 4Q2017, the market metro Chicago to Metro LA was about 25% larger than DEN-LAX. Just a few domestic markets are larger. It's not implausible that Delta will start ORD-LAX.
Except the distance to ORD is double the distance to DEN from LAX. Plus DEN is woefully under served T-PAC so several possible DEN/LAX/TPAC connections are doable. Other than SYD, I don't think DL serves anywhere from LAX that isn't available non-stop from ORD. And in DEN you're only fighting UA and sort of F9. In ORD you're fighting UA and AA and AS plus WN at MDW.

So for DL LAX/ORD would all be O/D. And on the ORD end, they have virtually no FF base, and the LAX end it's so fractured that it would be tough to fill those flights profitably. Especially since I checked on Expedia and you can get a flight from LAX to ORD leaving Monday the 21st and returning the 22 for $206 on AA. There isn't a lot of room to lower fares to get any market share on that route.

I have to believe that DL has given this route strong consideration but just can't make the numbers work. It's not like this is some obscure city pair that would have a ton of demand but no one has thought it up or is brave enough to try.
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Old May 18, 18, 12:32 pm
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Originally Posted by kop84 View Post
And in DEN you're only fighting UA and sort of F9. In ORD you're fighting UA and AA and AS plus WN at MDW.
WN flies DEN-LAX like 8x/day
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