Why no love for Regional Jets?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by vickers, Sep 15, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. vickers

    vickers Gold Member

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    Last night I saw the new Southwest commercial where they advertise only flying 737's. This got me thinking.... Why no love for regional service?

    Personally, I really enjoy the regional jets, and here are my reasons:
    -I dont have elite status with any airline (yet....) so the lack of first class is no biggie for me.
    -I always check a bag, so I just carry my backpack on.
    -I watch movies or TV shows on my iPad, so no wifi or entertainment system does not bother me.
    -And the best thing about regional jets.................A!!!!! I dont have to sit beside anyone.

    Any others out there like me?
    regional jet.png
     
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  2. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    A lot of regional jets have 2-2 seating. With tiny seats. UA's CR2s are the ones I dread the most.

    What I do like about regional jets is that (often) they go to places that I otherwise couldn't get to because no one would fly a 737 there (not enough demand). Unfortunately airlines (particularly United) also use them on routes that are too long for being confined to such a small place. Nothing regional about a 3+ hour flight.
     
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  3. vickers

    vickers Gold Member

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    The configuration above is a United flight that is used between HSV and IAH. The longest I have ever been on a regional jet is a bit over 2 hours. But even then, I admit I get a bit antsy. But being able to fidget without someone right beside me helps.
     
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  4. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    redeye.png

    How's this for a red-eye on a regional jet? ;)
     
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  5. moongoddess

    moongoddess Silver Member

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    Ouch! And I thought Newark to Omaha on a regional jet was bad...
     
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  6. moongoddess

    moongoddess Silver Member

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    Because regional jets are noisy and very cramped, with too-small seats (and no way to buy bigger ones, as most don't have a first class section) and overhead bins too small to accept most standard-sized carryons. The only benefit is that they can fly to small airports that would otherwise not offer commercial airline service.
     
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  7. mattsteg
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    mattsteg Gold Member

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    Often narrow, poorly padded, tight putch seats. Wall can intrude on shoulder room. Less reliable operation and bumpier ride.

    Honestly it sounds like you enjoy sitting on one side of one model of regional jet...

    I like rjs for accessing smaller markets. If the equipment is one of the bigger embraers, or in F, then comfort is good. 3 across embraers are ok, but seat comfort is iffy. Crjs in the back are crap.
     
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  8. vickers

    vickers Gold Member

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    ok..... thats pushing it...... :)
     
  9. vickers

    vickers Gold Member

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    I guess they just run that model out of HSV. I know Delta runs a 2x2 configuration out of Huntsville to Atlanta, but its only a 35 minute flight. American run the 1x2 to Chicago and United runs the 1x2 to Denver and Houston. Im always on the 1 side. ;)
     
  10. YULtide

    YULtide Gold Member

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    According to Flight Diary, I've spent more time on E190s than any other plane the last 5 years. 13% of flights (and 33% this year) have been on these planes. Typically the flight duration is around 4 hours. I have to say they're pretty nice up front, and not generally too bad in the back, either. Had a lovely flight in 1A last Thursday YOW-YEG.
     
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  11. redtailshark

    redtailshark Silver Member

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    It's a long and uncomfortable ride. But that's still on a CR7 which is much a better experience in E+ than a CR2 and it actually has pseudo-F. I don't know if you ever took the most awful redeye of all time but I can tell you, CO's old PHX-IAH dep. 0150 on an E145 takes a great deal of beating. The pax certainly did - take a beating, I mean. This flight was quite possibly the most intolerable scheduled service I've ever encountered in every respect and thankfully it didn't last too long. The excuse offered by the GA's at PHX was to allow biz pax to connect to the early bank of CentAm departures ex-IAH.
     
  12. redtailshark

    redtailshark Silver Member

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    The RJs suck rocks for all those reasons and more, like their ride in turb and fuselages that contort our necks in the window seats. We (frequent flyers) mostly agree on these points. If someone is not elite however that changes things because the comfort level of mainline service doesn't increment so much.

    But I don't accept the premise of machine selection that management pretends to offer, which is RJ or nothing. RJs are quite inefficient on a CASM basis. A Q400 is much more economical on a CASM basis than any RJ and every airport currently served by an RJ could be more effectively and economically served by these machines. It's also bigger and roomier than a CR2 or E145. There is considerable inertia in contracting for regional service, and quid pro quos abound so that individual stations may very well not see the optimal service delivery, even computed using RJs.
     
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  13. Pizzaman
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    Pizzaman Co-founder

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    As an aside to above comments, prior to the AirTran acquisition, Southwest did something pretty smart, IMO, by only running one plane type. It reduced things like training for maintenance and other type-related items like pilots. Also makes it easier to carry spare parts.
     
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  14. mattsteg
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    mattsteg Gold Member

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    Single-type operation, as long as it lets you run the routes you want to with reasonable load factors, is certainly a big benefit, although the more you grow the less of a big deal it becomes and the more discipline is required to maintain it. I admire Southwest for having that discipline...but it also might be part of the reason I don't see them as a viable option for the bulk of my travel. I think the biggest deal is to have large enough fleets of each type you're running - the smaller you are, the more critical fleet uniformity.
     
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  15. Pizzaman
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    Agree on all points. Likely they won't deviate too far from the current fleet plan, especially since they're running out of US cities big enough that they're worth invading. I'm a little surprised they haven't considered a few cities North of the border.
     
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  16. moongoddess

    moongoddess Silver Member

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    Given that they're expanding south of the border, perhaps north of the border will follow eventually?
     
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  17. blackjack-21

    blackjack-21 Gold Member

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    Very high landing fees at several large Canadian airports (YYZ-Toronto's Pearson International being among the highest in the world) may deter WN arriving in Canada too soon, as they may not be able to offer discounted fares without adding on the higher fees associated with using some airports up here. Alternative smaller alrports such as YHM-Hamilton airport may be possible, as that's only about 30 miles west of Toronto, but still not a great alternative to YYZ, as Westjet found out after some years, and now uses YYZ for most of it's flights.

    After sitting on a CO E145 flight from YYZ-IAH for three hours and thirty eight minutes a few years ago, where the seats gradually hardened into concrete half way there, my wife and I refuse to use them for anything over two hours flight time, although they're okay for YYZ-EWR connections with flights at just over an hour and a half. Using the Dash8-400's on that flight adds ten minutes to the flight times, but the Dashes are more comfortable and usually arrive at T-C in EWR, while the E145's arrive at T-A, necessitating a bus tranfser to C which adds to connection times.
     
  18. violist
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    violist Gold Member

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    Why no love? The earlier ones were really terribly set up and gave
    you the impression of extreme crampedness even if there was
    enough room - I had a rare claustrophobia attack the first time I
    rode in one - a Delta CR2, an hour flight, crew of 3 and only 4 to 6
    passengers. And yet I felt that the sky was falling.

    The jungle jets, much derided when they came out, provide a
    better consumer experience, and I am told they are more
    reliable as well.
     
  19. daninstl

    daninstl Gold Member

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    I love regional jets so much I would like to own one. They are like a cheap blind date. Not always the right fit but you can put up with anything for a short period of time. I only "really" like regional jets for less than 2 hours at a time.
     
  20. Pizzaman
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    Maybe, but WN isn't the cheapest airline now. I think they could manage it in their current price structure.
     
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  21. blackjack-21

    blackjack-21 Gold Member

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    WN's price structure doesn't include many of the extra fees, surcharges, etc., that come into play for flights from Canada to the U.S. I had a look at Air Canada's fares and fees for a short notice flight between YYZ-BWI, which is one of WN's hubs. Besides the base RT fare of over $1,200 CAD, there's the following add-ons and surchages:

    Canada Airport Improvement Fee SQ 25.00
    U.S.A Transportation Tax US 39.66
    U.S Agriculture Fee XA 5.67
    Canada Goods and Services Tax (GST/HST #10009-2287 RT0001) XG 61.16
    U.S Passenger Facility Charge XF 5.10
    Canada Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST #10009-2287 RT0001) RC 3.25
    U.S.A Immigration User Fee XY 7.93
    Air Travellers Security Charge (ATSC) CA 12.10
    September 11 Security Fee AY 6.35
    U.S. Federal Customs Fee YC 6.23

    Add an additional $15.00 for NAVCAN and ATC charges, plus the U.S. segment fees if you're
    traveling beyond BWI on a connection and you've got much more then if your trip starts in the U.S.

    While I'm sure WN would be welcomed up here by much of the public as a way to possibly stop the increasingly high airfares because of their competiton, still they'll be met with some resisitance from the current players, AC, WS, and Porter, plus the other U.S. majors flying here already, and even with their slightly lower fares, if they can do it, the add-ons that everyone pays may make the difference negligible. While I don't know the actual landing fee costs per flight from up here, other then they're quite high, and if WN has six or eight flights a day out of YYZ, part of these too would have to be passed on to their pax.

    That's why many travelers from the Toronto area choose to cross the border to catch flghts from BUF if they have the time and means to get there, as the lower costs of taxes, fees, and other extras more then make up for the costs and time to do so, as inconvenient as it may seem, especially for a large family travelling at the same time.
     
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  22. DanielCosta

    DanielCosta Member

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    Believe it or not, I've never actually been on a proper regional jet so I can't properly judge, however, a few friends said their trip was horrendous.
     
  23. blackjack-21

    blackjack-21 Gold Member

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    Depends on the aircraft type, seating layout and length of flight. Shorter flights on the execjets are bearable for the most part, but most of the smaller ones (E135/145, CRJ100/200 or similar) for anything longer then about two hours will bring about lots of moans and groans about aches and pains on arrival, at least from this traveler.
     
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  24. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    I hate CRJ100/200s because I always seem to get a full back seated in the window seat next to me and I am squeezed even further into the aisle on those 2x2 BarbieJets. At least the new generation CR7/9s have a slightly wider fuselage and thus more shoulder space in the window seats...though must admit also with their F cabins, seldom see me in the back (AA's great to its ExecPlats with comp upgrades). However, much prefer the E145s if I must fly an RJ because I can get the exit row on the 1 side, which is almost like an F seat on a small jet. And when flying AAEagle/Envoy I also get comp drinks/BoB on these planes with no F. While UA still flies older RJs into YYZ (and Q400s), AA has pretty much upgraded regional flights to CR7s and E175s with only one or two E145s a day. Seldom find myself on an AC Regional RJ, though have been on a few CR7s mainly in front, but also in the back where it's not as bad as on the CRJ100/200s.

    But I can accept the egalitarian notion that accompanies many regional flights.
     
  25. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    Well, six of those fees you list are levied by the US government, two are Canadian sales taxes applied to all items we purchase up here. Only two are Canadian user-pay service charges (airport improvement and security fees) and you allude to a third, NAVCAN. So it is US-imposed fees -- which should be differentiated from taxes -- that add more to your ticket than Canadian-imposed ones. But recognize that the Conservative Mulroney government quite correctly decided that those who fly should cover the cost of the services that support the infrastructure of commercial aviation, and not taxpayers at large. Thus unlike the US where taxpayers still bear the brunt of these "hidden" costs, we see them directly on our tickets, for better or worse. And because the US refuses to join the rest of the western world by assessing some form of national sales tax, HST/GST gets tacked onto shorthual (under 500 miles) transborder tickets (and which is ultimately rebated for business travelers).

    The base fare is determined by market demand on a given route, and of course competing carriers. WN may enter the Canadian market but we've seen others come in and eventually drop out (i.e. VirginAmerica).

    That said, not sure what this has to do with BarbieJets?
     
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