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Most delays & cancellation seem to be on sUA aircraft?

Most delays & cancellation seem to be on sUA aircraft?

Old Jul 24, 15, 6:15 pm
  #1  
txp
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Most delays & cancellation seem to be on sUA aircraft?

Hi everyone,

This post is not meant to debate the operational deficiencies of the two subsidiaries (UA and CO) -- we are way past that point -- but rather to point to the fact that sUA might have more MX issues that sCO, due to the older age of sUA's aircraft fleet.

Having observed both the domestic and international delay/cancellation threads, I have noticed -- though I have to admit did not have time for a detailed statistical analysis -- that a lot of the flight numbers affected are in the 200-999 range. These are flights operated by sUA. From my small, admittedly non-scientific sample, it appears that sUA aircraft are affected by MX issues to a larger extent that sCO aircraft are.

Given the rock-bottom interest rate environment, would in not make sense for UA to replace its aging fleet (both sCO and sUA) with newer aircraft?

This, along with a less aggressive scheduling that allows for more aircraft downtime, should considerably improve reliability. I am very disappointed with the airline's on-time performance this summer. It's a pity, because I have seen improvements in some areas in the past two years. However, the high frequency of flight delays and cancellations are now forcing me to look elsewhere.
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Old Jul 24, 15, 6:33 pm
  #2  
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Just because financing is cheap doesn't mean new planes come free. You still have to pay for them. Also, that flight number range isn't quite as authoritative as it used to be, though it mostly holds.

One set of data I have access to from the May 15 - July 15 timeframe suggests that sCO had more delays and sUA had more cancels. Take that as you wish.

Code:
200-999
 DELAYRATE    CXLRATE
---------- ----------
.442959852 .0185998176

<200 or 1000-1800
 DELAYRATE    CXLRATE
---------- ----------
.490750976 .0143709927
And if they bought new they'd likely want to be more aggressive with scheduling, not less, as the planes don't make money sitting on the ground.

For comparison sake, here are the numbers for AA & DL:

Code:
AA 
DELAYRATE    CXLRATE
---------- ----------
.406521205 .00997474653

DL
 DELAYRATE    CXLRATE
---------- ----------
.344133656 .00338411329
DoT reports have delays lower than all of these numbers so I'll need to figure out the differences, but either way there's a comparison available.
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Old Jul 24, 15, 6:36 pm
  #3  
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This conclusion is based on . . . what? Let's see the evidence, please.

The numbers posted by mduell last month show the sCO widebodies had a materially higher delay and cancel rate during the recent spree.
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Old Jul 24, 15, 6:44 pm
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I think you are wrong.
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Old Jul 24, 15, 6:52 pm
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Are the MX people split like pilots and FAs? Only CO MX people work on sCO aircraft etc
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Old Jul 24, 15, 7:03 pm
  #6  
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Over on the international delay and cancellation thread, I posted this on 7/21.

Excluding the weather related cancellations earlier this month, so far in July UA has cancelled 35 sCO international flights, and 23 sUA international flights. Almost 3 a day.
That was based solely on the reports of cancellations reported in that thread, so its accuracy isn't guaranteed.

At this point it doesn't really matter which subsidiary had more of the 58 cancelled international flights. That many in a 21 day period is horrendous.
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Old Jul 24, 15, 7:24 pm
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It's not so much the age of the aircraft, as is it how aggressively they schedule and their ability to recover.

Recall that PMUA had an older fleet than PMCO, but PMUA also had superior on-time performance.
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Old Jul 24, 15, 7:29 pm
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Almost 4 years into the "merger" this should not even be a discussion. The Unions, management and employees need to work it out and become UNITED!
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Old Jul 24, 15, 7:40 pm
  #9  
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Didn't Jose also say recently that flight numbers are no longer indicative of subsidiary, making this entire thread baseless?
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Old Jul 24, 15, 7:59 pm
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Originally Posted by mahasamatman View Post
Didn't Jose also say recently that flight numbers are no longer indicative of subsidiary, making this entire thread baseless?
We've seen a bit of crossover (sCO 737 operating a 4xx flight, sUA operating 78, etc) but not enough to materially change the numbers.

Alternatively you can use registration to determine sub if your dataset has it.
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Old Jul 24, 15, 8:47 pm
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I am no cheerleader of either sUA nor sCO, but all the mx/cxl I've had in the last year have been sCO -- all domestic -- as intl I fly UA GF or OAL and sCO doesn't offer it!
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Old Jul 24, 15, 8:47 pm
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Who cares if it is sCO or sUA. It is the same company: United Continental Holdings, period.

99% of the PX do not know who is flying the plane, fueled it, loaded the baggage, catered it or where the FA's came from. They do not care. They want to get from A-B on UNITED AIRLINES, on time. Blame, blame, blame. sUA vs sCO needs to end. FIX THE PROBLEM with your airline!
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Old Jul 24, 15, 9:04 pm
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Originally Posted by channa View Post
It's not so much the age of the aircraft, as is it how aggressively they schedule and their ability to recover.

Recall that PMUA had an older fleet than PMCO, but PMUA also had superior on-time performance.
IMHO it all comes down to cross fleeting the planes but not the people. When I book for friends I never book sUA planes in sCO hubs or sCO planes in sUA hubs. That this is still necessary is disappointing.
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Old Jul 24, 15, 10:02 pm
  #14  
txp
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Originally Posted by sbm12 View Post
Just because financing is cheap doesn't mean new planes come free. You still have to pay for them. Also, that flight number range isn't quite as authoritative as it used to be, though it mostly holds.

One set of data I have access to from the May 15 - July 15 timeframe suggests that sCO had more delays and sUA had more cancels. Take that as you wish.

Code:
200-999
 DELAYRATE    CXLRATE
---------- ----------
.442959852 .0185998176

<200 or 1000-1800
 DELAYRATE    CXLRATE
---------- ----------
.490750976 .0143709927
And if they bought new they'd likely want to be more aggressive with scheduling, not less, as the planes don't make money sitting on the ground.

For comparison sake, here are the numbers for AA & DL:

Code:
AA 
DELAYRATE    CXLRATE
---------- ----------
.406521205 .00997474653

DL
 DELAYRATE    CXLRATE
---------- ----------
.344133656 .00338411329
DoT reports have delays lower than all of these numbers so I'll need to figure out the differences, but either way there's a comparison available.

WOW!

Thanks for posting this.

I did not realize how bad UA was compared to AA and DL. You are correct about delays being mostly sCO.

What I meant to say in my original post is that cancellations, especially international wide bodies, seem to be mostly sUA. Your data confirms this but the discrepancy is not as big as I would have thought.

What is really big is the discrepancy between UA and DL -- the cancellation rate on sCO is four times as big as on DL, and the cancellation rate on sUA is six times as big as DL!

My sense is that the difference between sUA and sCO, assuming such difference is statistically significant, is most likely due to the difference in the age of the fleet.

But the difference between, on the one hand, UA-CO combined and, on the other hand, DL, can only be due to management, because DL inherited some older aircraft from NW and somehow they manage to maintain high reliability.

This is terrible news for UA...
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Old Jul 24, 15, 10:10 pm
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Originally Posted by txp View Post
WOW!

Thanks for posting this.

I did not realize how bad UA was compared to AA and DL. You are correct about delays being mostly sCO.

What I meant to say in my original post is that cancellations, especially international wide bodies, seem to be mostly sUA. Your data confirms this but the discrepancy is not as big as I would have thought.

What is really big is the discrepancy between UA and DL -- the cancellation rate on sCO is four times as big as on DL, and the cancellation rate on sUA is six times as big as DL!

My sense is that the difference between sUA and sCO, assuming such difference is statistically significant, is most likely due to the difference in the age of the fleet.

But the difference between, on the one hand, UA-CO combined and, on the other hand, DL, can only be due to management, because DL inherited some older aircraft from NW and somehow they manage to maintain high reliability.

This is terrible news for UA...
The age of the aircraft can influence reliability, but not to the extent of maintenance. Preventative maintenance, or spending more for better overhauls, can improve reliability, as we've seen in the 747 fleet. There are plans to do the same with the 3-class 767 fleet when it's reconfigured.

http://www.runwaygirlnetwork.com/201...rior-overhaul/
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