United to cancel Seattle/Anchorage Route Eff. June 4

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by 787Flyer, Mar 3, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. 787Flyer

    787Flyer New Member

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    United hasn't made an official announcement yet but they are ceding the Seattle to Anchorage market to the other players (AS/DL/B6). The last flight from Seattle to Anchorage will operate on June 4th at 2110L with the last return flight operating June 5th at 0040L. With the end of Seattle/Anchorage service United will operate year around from their Chicago and Denver hubs as well as Houston, Newark, and San Francisco during the Summer.

    Code:
    Seattle/Anchorage Service
    4JUN    UA1603    SEA 2110 2347 ANC
    5JUN    UA1101    ANC 0040 0500 SEA
    

    In case anyone was interested in UA's 2014 Summer Service to/from Anchorage.

    Code:
    Anchorage 2014 Summer Service
    DEN/ANC    DLY    to    DLY    1x Daily    B738
    EWR/ANC    6/7    to    8/30   Sa. Only    B752
    IAH/ANC    6/5    to    8/19   1X Daily    B753
    ORD/ANC    DLY    to    DLY    1X Daily    B738
    ORD/ANC    6/5    to    8/19   1X Daily    B738
    SFO/ANC    6/5    to    9/19   1X Daily    B738
    
     
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  2. ssullivan
    Original Member

    ssullivan Gold Member

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    Well, that sucks. That IAH-SEA-ANC flight has been on the schedule for many years now, and always seemed to carry a lot of traffic all the way to IAH, in addition to the local customers. I guess there's less need for it now with the other options that exist in the network, but still, it was an easier option just because it was a through flight. I flew it several times years ago and crews always allowed passengers not ending their trip at SEA to remain on board, which made it a bit more convenient than a standard connection with change of aircraft.
     
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  3. Anglo Large Clawed Otter
    Original Member

    Anglo Large Clawed Otter Gold Member

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    The timing of the IAH-SEA-ANC flight was also conducive to spending a weekend in ANC, as it left around 5:30pm (so you could work close to a full day). None of the remaining year-round options will allow for this, and for the short period that SFO-ANC operates, the 7pm departure would require departing IAH earlier than 5:30. Looks like I'll be flying AS from now on to ANC.
     
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  4. ssullivan
    Original Member

    ssullivan Gold Member

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    Yep, the last time I was on that flight I didn't leave work until around 3:30 PM.
     
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  5. Flyer1976
    Original Member

    Flyer1976 Gold Member

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    I for one will miss this route in the UA system since I flew on it often and the timing was always convenient leaving ANC at 0040L.

    9x ANC-SEA
    6x SEA-ANC
     
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  6. viguera
    Original Member

    viguera Gold Member

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    They seem to be having problems filling the planes though, but I wonder why they didn't experiment with equipment swaps.

    That 739 seems to always have 30-40 empty seats (today is 60+)
     
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  7. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Not really much of a surprise. There's not much to connect onward to at SEA any more and AS, DL and B6 are all fighting over local traffic. Not much for UA to really get out of that any more. The IAH-SEA-ANC worked with the well timed feed from EWR-SEA as well. As a standalone it doesn't. And there are now way more options to feed ANC from around the network.


    Export from Wandering Aramean Travel Tools
    Code:
    Flight Timetable -- ANC-SEA for date: 20140703 at 00:00 on All Airlines
    Carrier|Flight|From |To   |Dep. Time|Arr. Time|Schedule|Equipment|Duration|Exceptions|
    AS     |108   |ANC  |SEA  |00:35    |04:52    |1234567 |EQV      |3:17    |          |
    B6     |998   |ANC  |SEA  |00:36    |05:00    |1234567 |320      |3:24    |          |
    AS     |94    |ANC  |SEA  |01:15    |05:34    |1234567 |EQV      |3:19    |          |
    AS     |146   |ANC  |SEA  |01:55    |06:14    |1234567 |EQV      |3:19    |          |
    DL     |1560  |ANC  |SEA  |01:55    |06:19    |1234567 |739      |3:24    |          |
    AS     |114   |ANC  |SEA  |02:45    |07:00    |1234567 |EQV      |3:15    |          |
    AS     |730   |ANC  |SEA  |05:05    |09:20    |1234567 |EQV      |3:15    |          |
    AS     |112   |ANC  |SEA  |07:00    |11:15    |1234567 |738      |3:15    |          |
    DL     |2578  |ANC  |SEA  |07:00    |11:23    |1234567 |73H      |3:23    |          |
    AS     |96    |ANC  |SEA  |09:20    |13:40    |1234567 |EQV      |3:20    |          |
    AS     |80    |ANC  |SEA  |10:10    |14:35    |1234567 |EQV      |3:25    |          |
    AS     |84    |ANC  |SEA  |11:00    |15:25    |1234567 |734      |3:25    |          |
    AS     |120   |ANC  |SEA  |13:20    |17:39    |1234567 |EQV      |3:19    |          |
    AS     |92    |ANC  |SEA  |14:25    |18:40    |1234567 |EQV      |3:15    |          |
    AS     |90    |ANC  |SEA  |15:10    |19:33    |12345-7 |EQV      |3:23    |          |
    DL     |2436  |ANC  |SEA  |15:45    |20:09    |1234567 |73H      |3:24    |          |
    AS     |136   |ANC  |SEA  |16:00    |20:23    |1234-67 |EQV      |3:23    |          |
    AS     |98    |ANC  |SEA  |16:50    |21:13    |1234567 |EQV      |3:23    |          |
    AS     |82    |ANC  |SEA  |17:50    |22:19    |1-34567 |EQV      |3:29    |          |
    AS     |102   |ANC  |SEA  |18:45    |22:59    |1234567 |EQV      |3:14    |          |
    AS     |104   |ANC  |SEA  |19:55    |00:09+1  |1234-67 |EQV      |3:14    |          |
    AS     |106   |ANC  |SEA  |21:30    |01:58+1  |1234567 |73Q      |3:28    |          |
    
    Powered by The Wandering Aramean Travel Tools. Click for your free account!
     
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  8. downhillcrasher

    downhillcrasher Gold Member

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    The UA flight cancelation aside, can I say what an awesome schedule this is? There is basically a flight every couple hours, even in the middle of the night! I wish most routes had this kind of service (like NYC-SFO, which gets a ton of flights a day, but with a huge gap from 8:30 pm to 6 am)
     
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  9. 8MiHi

    8MiHi Silver Member

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    That was such a beautiful route. I only flew it once but spent the entire flight glued to the window.
     
  10. Seacarl
    Original Member

    Seacarl Gold Member

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    Another blow to UA at SEA. There's not much service left to cut, but how much longer will they even pretend to both with SEA-LAX and SEA-PDX?

    I would have thought that the economics of SEA-ANC as a tag were pretty good because it can make use of an aircraft that will otherwise RON at SEA. There are already plenty of aircraft that RON at SEA, so sending one north around 5pm and another around 9pm seemed to make sense. They can be back in SEA in time to operate morning flights.

    But AS has frequency and elite loyalty, and while UA has a historical frequent flyer base in SEA, UA is becoming less and less useful. B6 has little loyalty at SEA. But DL is making a pretty big push.

    Where I once thought SEA was kind of a focus city, it's clearly simply a spoke for UA now.
     
  11. Bay Pisco Shark
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    Bay Pisco Shark Gold Member

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    It was more like a small hub than a focus city 20 years ago. N was all UA.
     
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  12. dayone
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    dayone Silver Member

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    I wonder how long UA has flown this route. I'm thinking it's decades.
     
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  13. ssullivan
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    ssullivan Gold Member

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    A long time. It was a CO route. Before there was ever a seasonal nonstop IAH-ANC flight during the summer, CO served ANC year-round with IAH-SEA-ANC, timed so that flights to SEA from their other hubs could connect to it.
     
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  14. Bay Pisco Shark
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    Bay Pisco Shark Gold Member

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    UA flew it for (likely) decades. UA pulled out of ANC completely before the "end," but did have seasonal SFO, ORD, and perhaps DEN service before the pre-merger departure.
     
  15. Flyer1976
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    Flyer1976 Gold Member

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    Indeed but the UA of 2014 will be serving ANC from DEN, EWR, IAH, ORD, & SFO this summer. DL will be serving ANC from ATL, LAX, MSP, SEA, & SLC this Summer as well as FAI & JNU out of SEA.
     
  16. Seacarl
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    Seacarl Gold Member

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    For as long as I can remember, since at least the 1980's, pmUA flew SEA-ANC, generally 1/day in the winter and more in the summer. Only after the 9/11 attacks as the airline shrunk did the route end on pmUA. I don't know when pmCO started it, but they had 1-2/day, maybe even generally 2/day because it was good fleet utilization rather than RON in SEA. If ANC is a worthwhile destination, I would have thought some service via SEA would have continued to make sense. But we seem to be in an era of rapid shrinkage. I wonder how much SMI/J's compensation is tied to a gross margin percentage, and so long as he cuts service with below average gross margin, he thinks he'll increase gross margin. The way things are going, DL will soon be the world's leading airline.
     
  17. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Well before the merger. :-:

    LAX will stay, I'd imagine, for the foreseeable future. PDX could go and I doubt many would miss it.

    It costs a lot more to fly a plane than to leave it on the ground. They'd have to be actually making money for it to make sense to fly the route.

    There really aren't any cities in the UA route network with non-hub service. Maybe one or two but the vast majority of flights touch a hub at one end or the other. And that's rather typical of a network carrier's operations.
     
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  18. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Shouldn't that be easy for the world's leading airline, now that they are flyer friendly? ;)
     
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  19. Bay Pisco Shark
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    Bay Pisco Shark Gold Member

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    That is only when the plane is flyering :p
     
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  20. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Exactly. And they have to be losing money on that route, flying planes half empty every day.

    The 1:02 has 60 empty seats, and the 9:12pm flight has almost 100 empty seats. That's a lot of empty seats, consistently flying back and forth day in and day out.
     
  21. Bay Pisco Shark
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    Bay Pisco Shark Gold Member

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    It is also possible that there was a cargo contract that went away. A lot of empty seats doesn't necessarily mean a lot of lost revenue, depending on the market.
     
  22. colpuck
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    colpuck Gold Member

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    It's like watching a train wreck in slow motion.

    Sent from a reasonably priced car.
     
  23. TravelerRob
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    TravelerRob Silver Member

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    And there's still talk of UA partnering with AS. Maybe a reason why UA is ceding the SEA-ANC route. DL is clearly going head-to-head with AS so their partnership will likely end soon.

    -Rob
     
  24. genemk2

    genemk2 Gold Member

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    This is the first I've heard of this rumor -- since UA has ceded most of the NW already (or so it seems), might not be a bad move.
     
  25. Seacarl
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    Seacarl Gold Member

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    It wasn't just a CO route.
    It's being operated with CR2s is high CASM compared to the competition and undesirable by PAX. It's almost, why bother.
    Now that DL will compete with e190 maybe you have a point. And NRT and now ANC gone. It still feeds *A international flights. But I wouldn't count on it staying around either.
    ANC is operated with relatively new 738/739 aircraft, so lease or interest payments are due whether they are flying or sitting on the ground, and operating expenses are low. The economic analysis for the company may generate net contribution even another measure shows below average operating margin. It does make a difference whether the aircraft could be flying other missions or would otherwise sit on the ground.
    Historically SEA was somewhat of a focus city with beyond service to places like YVR ANC HNL NRT and to a lesser extent PDX GEG. There really wasn't another analogous city in the route network because there were some destinations worth serving beyond SEA but not nonstop. Given the oil/gas industry, UA is likely giving up more IAH-ANC traffic than they realize by not continuing the IAH-SEA-ANC route when the IAH-ANC non-stop isn't running. Otherwise that traffic will shift to AS since the DEN or SFO connections aren't well-timed.
     

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