British Airways Creates Transatlantic Shuttle Service

Discussion in 'British Airways | Executive Club' started by AmericanGirl, Mar 30, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. AmericanGirl
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    AmericanGirl Silver Member

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    http://www.airlinenewsresource.com/article53537.html

    British Airways, American Airlines and Iberia have announced they will deliver more benefits to customers as schedules are coordinated across the North Atlantic and more destinations are launched in summer 2011.

    From March 27, American Airlines and British Airways will effectively create a transatlantic shuttle service between the top US-UK routes by aligning the timing on their schedules.

    The biggest change is on the Heathrow - New York route. Previously, five of the 11 daily flights to New York left Heathrow at almost exactly the same time, leaving gaps of up to three hours between services.

    Now flights will depart every hour, on the hour between 1pm and 8pm from Heathrow. There will also only be an hour and a half between morning departures at the most.
     
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  2. gleff
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    They've got frequency and they've spaced out the flights. Which is great.

    But to me that's hardly a Shuttle at least as the term has frequently been used in the past. (No doubt they want to use it because it resonates in particular in the NYC market).

    Key concepts of a 'shuttle' operation, I think, are:
    * High frequency
    * No reservations
    * Guaranteed seat

    That's the concept that Eastern pioneered (they had spare Lockheeds being phased out of the mainline fleet that were fully paid-for, and kept extra crews) with the original 'Shuttle' operation in the US. (The Eastern Shuttle became the Trump Shuttle became the US Airways shuttle, which can hardly be called 'shuttle' anymore since it's now integrated into the mainline operation, there's no seat guarantee, and the same change rules apply as with the rest of the airline e.g. no standby unless you can't be confirmed onto an earlier flight / same day confirmed changes $50).
     
  3. Primula
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    Primula Silver Member

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    British airline uses British terminology shocker. You might want to look at the domestic shuttle services, which at various times have comprised different features.
     
  4. gleff
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    The term for an airline began ~ 1959 in South America, actually, with a Rio - Sao Paolo shuttle formed by Varig, among others. ;)

    It was followed the sme year by a Pittsburgh - Philly shuttle on Allegheny.

    The concept as it involved both of those operations included no reservations.

    Now, if BA were running hourly service out of LCY well that would be a shuttle!! :)
     
  5. Primula
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    Primula Silver Member

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    And the domestic shuttle runs - principally LON-EDI and LON-MAN have operated both with reservations and without them in the UK, and the term 'shuttle' now applies more to the frequent domestic runs between cities in the UK.

    The meanings of words change. Gay had an entirely different meaning in 1959! :D
     
  6. Prospero
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    Prospero Silver Member

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    When BA launched the Super Shuttle service between LHR and Belfast, Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Manchester it resembled the concept described by gleff:

    - no inflight service
    - no reservations, just turn up and go and BA would always guarantee a seat for you - even laying on an extra 757 for just 1 passenger. Do you remember the TV ad?

    Better still, BA marked the launch with SSCs no less.

    The SuperShuttle evolved, inflight service was introduced, advanced reservations became mandatory and the Super prefix was dropped. BA eventually dispensed with the formal Shuttle branding but it lives on in the minds of BA customers.
     
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  7. The Saint
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    ... and on ATC, where I believe the callsign for the domestic BA flights is Shuttle rather than Speedbird.
     
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  8. Disco Volante
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    That is correct.
     
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  9. Skye1
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  10. Honey - the Super Shuttle came later - the original Shuttle was as you describe the Super Shuttle (some of us are old enough to have used it!) came as a response to BD launching LHR-GLA - and subsequently EDI and BFS (if that is the right code). I recall the full service drinks and meal that was served. Ticket were no longer sold on board and the service was breakneck on those 757s.

    The idea of a transatlantic "Shuttle" is ridiculous - for a start they all use different terminals at LHR and indeed in JFK. One can hardly just roll up - least of all with this security and other bureaucracy - to say nothing of this pre-clearance costing $14.
     
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  11. TRAVELSIG
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    Well said. Perhaps in times past with the Concorde that was far closer to a shuttle....
     
  12. Prospero
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    I totally agree. More Super-Shuffle than Super-Shuttle ;)

    While I'd happily switch from BA to AA on a daytime flight should the timings offer greater convenience, I don't relish the thought of transferring from T5 to T3 to do this. It's a right kerfuffle at the best of times. Heading back to Blighty, the gulf that exists between the BA and AA hard products (I predominately fly in business class) would need to close significantly to make this a value proposition.
     
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