AA vs SWA

JPB

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Some people are assuming the inevitable demise of AA in north TX if Love opens up to national markets. I believe that when it comes to complex entities such as major airlines the outcome is impossible to calculate. US airways is a prime example of that: I remember the expert giving us the date of termination, sometime in the summer 04.



So to return to the subject AA vs SWA:



1) What do you think the end result would be.

2) How long is that going to take.

3) Do you think that at this critical time in aviation, 2 major airlines should engage in such a fight.

 

Draginass

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Much ado about not much. Lots of bluster and smoke, and when it's over, you'll wonder what all the fuss was about. It's up to the taxpayers and crooked Texas politicians (most them of course). If they want the noise, congestion, and costs of having Love expand slightly, then it's up to them.
 

AA717driver

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No airline is everything to everyone. SWA is a great airline for some people. Others hate them for what they are--effecient, low service and low cost. They can't and don't want to provide the same service as AA or other large airlines. If that were the case, they'd have ERJ's and 777's on order.

AA is a massive, constipated corporation that just happens to have an airline as its core business. It has an infrastructure inextricably bound together with labor unions. Flexibility and adaptibility are nowhere to be found in AMR management's dictionary. But if you want to go from McAllen, TX to Shanghai your choice of carriers is small.

I contend that AA isn't competing with SWA. They are competing with the internet (where the lowest price is king), the handful of full service U.S. airlines and with their own internal demons (infrastructure, intransigent unions and myopic, inbred, arrogant management).

The challenge for both will be to see if SWA can be more like AA. Can they manage a huge airline and still retain their LCC flexibility and effeciency? AA will have to be more like SWA, too. AA needs to run a global airline with the flexibility and openmindedness to adapt to changing times.

My money is on SWA for flourishing over the long haul. Like TWA and PanAm, if AA doesn't survive over the next 20 years, it will be a slow decline. AA is showing a little bit of willingness to change but not enough, fast enough. It will take a wholesale flush of AMR management to rid Centerpork of its 1980's mindset. Adapt or perish.TC
 

PTinbound

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"Low Service", at SWA, just to clarify, means we don't serve meals on our flights or have a first class cabin. However, I think if you ask 9 out of 10 passengers they'd tell you that we have a much HIGHER level of service than most of our competitors - we hire kind, friendly employees who treat our passengers and each other with concern and respect. There are always exceptions of course, but in general our people care and we won't lose your luggage. To me, that's a high level of service.
 

semperfido

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i just can't get past not having an assigned seat. i hate to sit in that middle seat. the cattle car approach leaves a lot to be desired. :)
 

Benhuntn

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Well said PT.....
 

Spooky 1

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PTinbound said:
"Low Service", at SWA, just to clarify, means we don't serve meals on our flights or have a first class cabin. However, I think if you ask 9 out of 10 passengers they'd tell you that we have a much HIGHER level of service than most of our competitors - we hire kind, friendly employees who treat our passengers and each other with concern and respect. There are always exceptions of course, but in general our people care and we won't lose your luggage. To me, that's a high level of service.
Sorry to burst your bubble but SWA has lost my luggage twice. Both times in PHX. To their credit they did find it and bring it to the hotel fairly quickly. SWA is a good airline but to think that they are even close to the perfection they are held to on this board is absurd. One thing that I seem to experience is late flights. I guess when you are making 10+ stops a day and weather gets into the schedule early on in that sequence of flights you are bound to get and stay behind.

I am usually not amused by the jokes that the FA's seem to enjoy spouting. Maybe its just the feeling that I am trapped and have no choice but to listen. Having said that I heard one of the funniest ones yet, from the Capt. no less. The stood at the front of the airplane, by the 1L door and announced to the pax that he had some good news and some bad news. We were already 1+ hour late on departure so everyone listened up closely. First of all the bad news. We were late because of weather earlier in the flight and probably would not not make up much if any time on this leg. Pause for reflection. Now the goods news. He said that he just saved a bunch of money on his car insurance! The place broke up and gotta say it was delivered perfectly. From that point forward the flight was just fine.

If anyone is voting, I can't stand the SWA boarding process.
 

Flopgut

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PTinbound said:
"Low Service", at SWA, just to clarify, means we don't serve meals on our flights or have a first class cabin. However, I think if you ask 9 out of 10 passengers they'd tell you that we have a much HIGHER level of service than most of our competitors - we hire kind, friendly employees who treat our passengers and each other with concern and respect. There are always exceptions of course, but in general our people care and we won't lose your luggage. To me, that's a high level of service.
Yeah, that compares to 100+ worldwide destinations, executive lounges, gourmet meals, seats that fold into beds with entertainment systems, widebody cabins, etc.

In my previous employment I traveled a great deal. I got a SWA Visa and joined Rapid Rewards because SWA rewards more quickly and went where I wanted to go at the time. In less than a year I ran enough through it for a roundtrip for my wife and I. We went to San Diego and had a great time. A friend of mine at work had chastized me about getting the SWA card, so I felt pretty cool when I got my trip first. Well, it was only about 6-8 months later when he took vacation and he went business class to Germany! I felt pretty stupid because I realized my mistake. At some point, it becomes less about what you pay, and more about what you get. See, the money was already spent. I mean, the money we ran through the cards was going to be spent as a cost of doing business. The key becomes what do you get for your money. I can tell you from experience, it is worth it to wait and get the superior product/service. And of late, the prices have changed a great deal. You can actually find a lot of legacy fares that are cheaper than SWA. When the non-market, global dynamics settle a bit, a lot of customers will come to the same realization that I did.

I am not confused about premium travel. SWA is not a real consideration in this regard. To say you have a "higher" level of service is to make a mockery of what service is.

Beyond that, I think the plan at SWA is to avoid DFW, expand LUV after repeal of the WA, and then work behind the scenes to encourage cabotage at DFW. The day after the repeal of the WA you will hear an outcry of uncertainty over what to do with a half empty DFW. That is when the SWA spin machine will fire up in a not so covert manner to get every long haul, government sponsored foriegn carrier into DFW. Sounds crazy? You bet! Are they above it? NO!

The key for AA (or any legacy) to survive is to quickly realize that SWA is not some good natured competitor. There is no bottom, no out of bounds or the like for SWA in its pursuit of market share. In fact, they don't want market share, they just want to kill legacy airlines, They certainly don't want to fly to all the places USAir went (or provide that level of service), they just want them dead.

I miss the SWA that Herb ran. I was treated well by SWA as a customer (although I would not do it twice). This new SWA disgusts me.
 

TexaSWA

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.....
 
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TexaSWA

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Flopgut said:
Beyond that, I think the plan at SWA is to avoid DFW, expand LUV after repeal of the WA, and then work behind the scenes to encourage cabotage at DFW. The day after the repeal of the WA you will hear an outcry of uncertainty over what to do with a half empty DFW. That is when the SWA spin machine will fire up in a not so covert manner to get every long haul, government sponsored foriegn carrier into DFW. Sounds crazy? You bet! Are they above it? NO!

The key for AA (or any legacy) to survive is to quickly realize that SWA is not some good natured competitor. There is no bottom, no out of bounds or the like for SWA in its pursuit of market share. In fact, they don't want market share, they just want to kill legacy airlines, They certainly don't want to fly to all the places USAir went (or provide that level of service), they just want them dead.

I miss the SWA that Herb ran. I was treated well by SWA as a customer (although I would not do it twice). This new SWA disgusts me.
And we will destroy AA and DFW with a new "LASER" that is being constructed at Love Field under the guise of a training center expansion.

That is, of course, unless they agree to pay a hefty ransom.
 
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snowman

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Texaswa, the quote at the end of your message, is that Robert Earl Keen, or Townes van zandt? Not sure you have the lyric right...
Swa boarding is a pain in the rear. HOW is the herd method more efficient than handing out seat assignments?
adios
snowman
ain't no good in an evil hearted woman
 

Uncle Leo

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semperfido said:
i just can't get past not having an assigned seat. i hate to sit in that middle seat. the cattle car approach leaves a lot to be desired. :)

As long as you get to the gate when you are suppose to you will not be in a middle seat...that being said if you are running late and all that is left is middles, at least you will be able to pick the 2 fat (or skinny) people you want to sit between.
 

Flopgut

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TexaSWA said:
And we will destroy AA and DFW with a new "LASER" that is being constructed at Love Field under the guise of a training center expansion.

That is, of course, unless they agree to pay a hefty ransom.
Frickin sharks with frickin laserbeams on thier head in Lake Grapevine!

Or perhaps seabass? Are they ill-tempered?

I hear its called the alan parsons project.

No really, I'm mostly serious about that cabotage stuff. I think that is why SWA changed position on the WA!
 

semperfido

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Uncle Leo said:
As long as you get to the gate when you are suppose to you will not be in a middle seat...that being said if you are running late and all that is left is middles, at least you will be able to pick the 2 fat (or skinny) people you want to sit between.
...there you go trying to turn a negative into a positive:D any group other than A is cause for great concern. Sun chips or Doritos?
 

TexaSWA

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snowman said:
Texaswa, the quote at the end of your message, is that Robert Earl Keen, or Townes van zandt? Not sure you have the lyric right...
Swa boarding is a pain in the rear. HOW is the herd method more efficient than handing out seat assignments?
adios
snowman
ain't no good in an evil hearted woman
Its actually Terry Allen. I was alittle off, the lyric is, "that im as big a Texan"
Bob Keen plays it, Towns VanZandt may have something to do with writing it, i dont know.

You are right in saying that there "aint no good in an evil hearted woman"

also worth a mention:

1. I aint cutout to be no Jessie James
2. You dont go writin' hot checks down in Mississippi
3. There aint no good chain gang
 

TexaSWA

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Back to the original topic:

JPB said:
Some people are assuming the inevitable demise of AA...
I havent heard anyone assuming this
 

snowman

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Oh yeah, Im as big a Texan as you are.... Great lyrics. thanks for the info.
adios
A trunk full of shiner bock and lone star....
snowman
 

CA1900

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snowman said:
Swa boarding is a pain in the rear. HOW is the herd method more efficient than handing out seat assignments?
I used to believe that until I watched it in action. SWA's method takes advantage of some simple psychological facts:

1. Everybody wants a good seat.
2. They want to get on first to get that seat.

These simple facts are why they're able to turn an airplane in a quarter-hour when the others are just thinking about starting boarding. You consider it a "herd method," but it's really no different from what I see on other major carriers -- they just "assign" the seats at a different time in the process.

The difference is that, with seat pre-assignments, when they announce "Now boarding rows 15 and higher, everybody crowds around the doorway, slowing down the boarding immensely. "Please stay seated until we call your row." Yeah, right.

The alternative, since everybody's going to be standing up around the doorway anyway, is to board them as they come, group by group. And so that's what SWA does. They're almost all lined up and waiting for the airplane, which means everybody gets on and off that much faster.

I ask you, which is worse: Being assigned a middle seat ahead of time, or getting one when you board? I'd say neither is any better. Nobody likes a middle seat except a kid traveling between his parents. That's why I like their method of rewarding those who check in early by getting in the first boarding group. And unlike days past where making a connection means you'll get one of the last boarding cards when you get to the connecting city, when you're making a connection, you get a boarding pass for that leg, too, so you'll almost always be in that "A" group there.

I never liked the IDEA of the SWA-style boarding. But having experienced it both ways, I really like it. The only part I can't figure out is why people in group "A" line up way ahead of the flight. They're going to get a good seat, no matter where they are in that line! Item #2 above, I guess.
 

Chest Rockwell

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There is no bottom, no out of bounds or the like for SWA in its pursuit of market share. In fact, they don't want market share, they just want to kill legacy airlines, They certainly don't want to fly to all the places USAir went (or provide that level of service), they just want them dead
.

Flopgut,

On what basis of fact do you know that this is the SWA business plan. You are correct in the market share statement. Let go of your hatred of SWA. Market share means nothing if your costs still exceed expenses. Profitability is what matters. AA has made a good deal of progress towards lowering its costs. I am sure that if oil was back down to $35-40/barrel AA and several others would be seeing significant profits.
 

cipolini

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Or, you can do like I do - try to find the married couple. One of them moves to the middle seat and I have the aisle ;)
 
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