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United says ADIOS to Cleveland hub by end of June

johnsonrod

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Not sure if this has already been reported - and not a huge surprise. I would expect more legacy hub closures (flight reductions) in the next year or two. Bottom line: UAL will now end nonstop service to 39 cities from Cleveland by the end of June. See the article link at the bottom.


United Airlines will cut its hub at Cleveland Hopkins International airport from April, ending nonstop service to 39 cities by the end of June.
?The demand for hub-level connecting flying through Cleveland simply isn't there," says Jeff Smisek, chairman, president and chief executive of the Chicago-based Star Alliance carrier, in a letter to employees on 1 February. "Ultimately, we can't create demand, but we do have a responsibility to react to it. We must make the right business decisions, even when those decisions are painful, so we can continue to compete effectively and invest appropriately in our business."

United has lost money in Cleveland during the past decade and new US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) pilot rest and training regulations hve accelerated the need to make the cuts, he adds.

The airline will decrease service to 72 peak day departures from Cleveland in three waves during April, May and June, according to the letter. It operates 199 peak day departures currently. The move represents a 64% reduction in departures and a 36% reduction in available seat miles (ASMs).

United Express operations will bear the brunt of the cuts. Regional departures will decrease by about 70%, according to the airline.
United will continue to fly from Cleveland to its hubs at Chicago O?Hare, Denver, Houston Intercontinental, Los Angeles, Newark, San Francisco and Washington Dulles. It will also maintain service to Albany, Baltimore, Boston, Dallas/Fort Worth, Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Las Vegas, Milwaukee, New York LaGuardia, Orlando, St. Louis, Tampa and Washington National.

?Even with the reductions, we will offer more than 20% more departures from Cleveland than we do from our next-largest city that isn't designated a hub, and we will maintain the majority of our mainline service,? says Smisek.

United will likely have to boost capacity at its other hubs in order to maintain its guidance of a 1% to 2% increase in ASMs in 2014. Nearby hubs that could serve similar connecting flows include Chicago O?Hare, Newark Liberty and Washington Dulles.

The carrier plans to keep its pilot and flight attendant bases at Cleveland but anticipates cutting about 430 operations jobs at the airport.
United inherited the Cleveland hub from Continental Airlines when the two carriers merged in 2010.

http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/united-to-cut-cleveland-hub-by-june-395460/
 

airksk

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Not closing the hub yet, drastic reduction in rj flying but mainline basically flat.
 

densoo

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He specifically says crews are not leaving but I'd think that has a lot to do with the costs of displacements and their ripple effect in training cycles, paid moves, and one year of positive space commuter travel.

"We expect to be able to keep our pilot and flight attendant bases in Cleveland, because we anticipate being able to keep substantially all of our mainline departures from Cleveland. We also expect to be able to keep all of our current technical operations in Cleveland, because we anticipate having the opportunity to work on the mainline aircraft."
 

scoreboardII

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I love the part about blaming low cost RJ pilots as a cause for not being able to find enough low cost RJ pilots, priceless.
 

list2002

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I'd buy that densoo. Heard our training dept is so backed up due to 737 upgrades from other aircraft (needing full training cycle) we can't even hire for the near future. Went from a goal of 100/mo to grinding halt until further notice. Nonetheless throw a potential whole (albiet small) hub worth of pilots possibly back in the mix if they change aircraft as well.
 

densoo

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I'd buy that densoo. Heard our training dept is so backed up due to 737 upgrades from other aircraft (needing full training cycle) we can't even hire for the near future. Went from a goal of 100/mo to grinding halt until further notice. Nonetheless throw a potential whole (albiet small) hub worth of pilots possibly back in the mix if they change aircraft as well.
They're very crafty. Notice the offer of "TDYs" (again) in March and the BATs to move pilots between the 756 bases. They're working hard to avoid displacements. They're not replacing retirees or pilots moving out of Cleveland so it's shrinking bit by bit. I expect when it gets below 50-75 pilots in each seat--the number used to open 737s in DEN, ORD, LAX, SFO--they'll shut it down.
 

BuzzSaw

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All the regionals are scrambling to fill classes and can't. Pay is pathetic and upgrade is long, long far away. Pilot Shortage, yes! Especially at all the regionals. There are lots of 3-7 year regional FOs stuck in the right seat and no opportunities for upgrade.

ExpressJet pilots voted 83% NO on pay cuts. American Eagle should vote soon, pay cuts or NO PAY CUTS?

Get your popcorn!
 

EWR_FO

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All the regionals are scrambling to fill classes and can't. Pay is pathetic and upgrade is long, long far away. Pilot Shortage, yes! Especially at all the regionals. There are lots of 3-7 year regional FOs stuck in the right seat and no opportunities for upgrade.

ExpressJet pilots voted 83% NO on pay cuts. American Eagle should vote soon, pay cuts or NO PAY CUTS?

Get your popcorn!

At $95 a barrel, if they were flown for free, fifty seat RJ's are a money losing proposition. No amount of hand wringing or moaning can change that fact. The sooner the MBA wiz kids face that fact, the better off they will be. Ma and Pa Kettle are not going to have five flights a day anymore from East Bum**** to every major business center, it sucks but it's reality.
 

igneousy2

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Agree. Airlines did this whole possible pilot shortage thing to themselves.

There is no pilot shortage...just a shortage of pilots willing to work for crap wages and no-benefits. The major airline carrot used to be big and fat. Not anymore so the pay is going to have to be something a little higher than the historic virtual zero that regionals have plugged into their business models.
 
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