jplatts
Topic Author
Posts: 1864
Joined: Sat Mar 18, 2017 6:42 pm

Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 12:37 am

AA and UA do lose some customers to WN in the Baltimore/Washington, Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami/Fort Lauderdale, Phoenix, and the San Francisco Bay Area markets due to WN not charging change fees to change flights and due to WN not charging for the 1st and 2nd checked bags.

DL is in a similar position at LAX and ATL, both of which are hubs for DL and focus cities for WN, but DL doesn't lose as much business to WN at SEA, SLC, MSP, DTW, CVG, LGA, BOS, and RDU due to SEA, SLC, MSP, DTW, CVG, LGA, BOS, and RDU being much smaller WN stations than LAX and ATL.

I think that demand for AA and UA service out of IAD, DCA, ORD, DFW, DEN, IAH, LAX, PHX, and SFO would likely be greater if it lowered change fees on non-refundable tickets (excluding basic economy tickets) and if AA and UA didn't charge for the 1st checked bag on regular economy tickets. However, I would expect AA and UA to continue to charge fees for the 1st checked bag on basic economy tickets.

Would AA and UA lower change fees and eliminate fees for the 1st checked bag on regular economy fares in order to better compete against WN? While there is enough O&D demand to support AA and/or UA hub operations at IAD, DCA, ORD, DFW, DEN, IAH, LAX, PHX, and SFO with the fees that are charged by AA and UA for itinerary changes and checked baggage, both AA and UA will continue to lose business to WN as long as AA and UA continue to charge $200 change fees and as long as AA and UA charge fees for the 1st checked bag.
 
LAXdude1023
Posts: 5376
Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2006 3:16 pm

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 12:37 am

No. They don't have to. The compete against them fine now.
Next flight: IAH-UIO-IAH on UA in Y
 
jplatts
Topic Author
Posts: 1864
Joined: Sat Mar 18, 2017 6:42 pm

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 1:17 am

LAXdude1023 wrote:
No. They don't have to. The compete against them fine now.


I agree with your point, even though I do like the extra flexibility that is there on WN compared to AA or UA.
 
RJNUT
Posts: 1614
Joined: Thu Dec 30, 1999 1:58 am

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 1:24 am

at once time AA offered to amend our corporate discount contract with unlimited fee waivers on competing routes with WN. but it was kind of a hassle to utilize on an ongoing basis, Workflow disruptive!
 
User avatar
FA9295
Posts: 1323
Joined: Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:44 pm

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 1:33 am

I flew PDX-LAX-MIA-DFW-PDX on AA about two months ago. Unfortunately, I was forced to consider changing my itinerary due to work complications, but noticed the outrageous $250+ change fee, and instead decided to change my work plans in order to accommodate my already-booked flight itinerary.

So I would LOVE to see them completely get rid of, or at least significantly lower the change fee prices to non-refundable flights, but as someone else already pointed out, they really don't need to--and the change fee is a great way for them to snag more money. They may be losing a handful of customers to WN, but I don't think that's really enough for them to consider changing that policy at this time.
No, "FA" in my username does not stand for "flight attendant"...
 
727200
Posts: 590
Joined: Fri Mar 17, 2017 5:31 pm

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 2:04 am

Nope.

2 different markets.

AA just made $450M and UA $900M. No need to go afterthe clientle of an LCC
 
Lufthansa
Posts: 2446
Joined: Thu May 20, 1999 6:04 am

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 2:40 am

High change fee's are the name of the game at most legacies globally. I think you'll find they'll try differentiate on service or the quality of their lounges before they go down that path. As a non- American, when needing to rebook we knew it was usually cheaper to rebook on WN then pay the change fee for west coast flights. The only exception was generally when you had a through fare on international connections, then you're stuffed... the onward leg will be gone. If southwest got a little braver and bought A330s or something and started some long haul routes they might look into that happening but I don't see it happening. It's working well for them all.... one lot offer global connectivity and lounges the other more flexibility on the short haul.
 
Bobloblaw
Posts: 2007
Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2012 1:15 pm

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 2:56 am

They have full flights now. Where would they put the passengers they take from WN?
 
MIflyer12
Posts: 4157
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 11:58 pm

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 3:15 am

Will WN ever do assigned seats, Y+, F cabins, AVOD, or lounges better to compete with AA, DL, and UA?
 
jplatts
Topic Author
Posts: 1864
Joined: Sat Mar 18, 2017 6:42 pm

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 3:45 am

MIflyer12 wrote:
Will WN ever do assigned seats, Y+, F cabins, AVOD, or lounges better to compete with AA, DL, and UA?


While WN doesn't operate any lounges, there are non-airline operated lounges at BWI, CVG, LAS, MCO, PHX, PIT, STL, and SEA that can be used by passengers traveling on WN. Lounges could be built at MDW, DAL, and HOU that would allow WN to better compete against the US3 carriers, but any new lounges at MDW, DAL, and HOU could be operated by an non-airline lounge operator such as The Club or Wingtips.

WN can compete against US3 carriers without assigned seats, Y+, or F cabins since WN's customers are willing to fly on WN without assigned seats, Y+, or F cabins. WN also already has the ability to stream videos and live TV to laptops, tablets, and smartphones over Wi-Fi.
 
jetblueguy22
Posts: 2997
Joined: Thu Nov 29, 2007 12:26 am

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 4:46 am

I’ve been a DL guy for years, but change fees may very well push me over to WN.

I fly domestically exclusively, so I don’t care about flights to Europe/Asia. I’m never going to get to a high medallion status, so FF benefits aren’t a massive concern or really benefit. And segments are shorter so I don’t care about PTVs or meal service.

For someone like me, WN makes sense. I often find myself finishing meetings or workshops much earlier than planned or even the night before. Being able to switch my flights and get home earlier on a Friday is a massive benefit to me. I get why airlines have change fees, but I’m loyal to airlines who don’t only give me a good experience onboard, but through the whole journey. WN has delivered on all the trips I’ve taken on them this year. Meanwhile UA/AA/DL have each left me without a shirt at some point this year, and charged me an arm and a leg to fix it
Look at sweatpants guy. This is a 90 million dollar aircraft, not a Tallahassee strip club
 
UALFAson
Posts: 914
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2004 2:41 pm

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 6:54 pm

jplatts wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
Will WN ever do assigned seats, Y+, F cabins, AVOD, or lounges better to compete with AA, DL, and UA?


While WN doesn't operate any lounges, there are non-airline operated lounges at BWI, CVG, LAS, MCO, PHX, PIT, STL, and SEA that can be used by passengers traveling on WN. Lounges could be built at MDW, DAL, and HOU that would allow WN to better compete against the US3 carriers, but any new lounges at MDW, DAL, and HOU could be operated by an non-airline lounge operator such as The Club or Wingtips.

WN can compete against US3 carriers without assigned seats, Y+, or F cabins since WN's customers are willing to fly on WN without assigned seats, Y+, or F cabins. WN also already has the ability to stream videos and live TV to laptops, tablets, and smartphones over Wi-Fi.


I think you're missing the point of MIflyer12's post. He/she is pointing out that you're questioning why don't other airlines act like WN to get their passengers when one could just as easily ask why doesn't WN act more like other airlines to get their passengers?

I am not willing to fly without assigned seats, Y+, or F cabins, so WN rarely meets my needs. I also rarely need to change my flights, so AA (my current carrier of choice) changing charge fees doesn't really affect me that much. My point is different strokes for different folks.
"We hope you've enjoyed flying with us as much as we've enjoyed taking you for a ride."
 
PSAatSAN4Ever
Posts: 184
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2018 5:38 pm

Re: Will AA or UA ever lower change fees on non-refundable domestic tickets in order to better compete against WN?

Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:07 pm

I find incomprehensibly large change fees to be almost immoral, but I also find lots of things wrong with many businesses today. That's just me, and that's an entirely different line of thought.

What I don't understand is the concept of being able to take an earlier flight if space is available. Twenty years ago in the U.S., the motto was, "if they can go out earlier, get 'em out earlier!". This would free up later seats and allow IRROPs passengers to take the empty seats if needed. This way, everyone could get to their destination, fewer people were bumped, fewer hotels needed to be booked, and at the end of the day, IRROPs passengers could be accommodated on seats now available from people flying out earlier.

Then something happened and this policy went out the window. "WHAT? You want to go early? What kind of monster are you wanting to screw up our computer systems? That'll be $250 plus the cost of the last-minute ticket difference!" Yeah, I know, I'm exaggerating, but not by much.

So what are the airlines left with? "Well, I offered to go early, and you said no, and that seat flew empty. Now you've got five extra passengers that can't fit, and you have to accommodate them on another airline, another flight, or with a hotel". The decision to say to your customers, "even if it helps us, we won't do it, because following our rules is the MOST important thing!". Okay, well, then, go ahead and pay for that hotel room and $500+ voucher for me because your plane is overbooked. Explain THAT as a good business decision to your shareholders.

I know we all play arm-chair CEO, and we all know airlines have fee after fee after fee. But if someone has already paid their fare, and there is a chance to get them out early, I would allow that change if I knew that the early seat would otherwise fly empty. Yeah, they'd have to show up to the airport and wait and hope, but on the same day of the flight, if they really wanted to do that, I'd be fine letting them on an earlier flight. If the last flight out of the day goes out half empty because passengers have flown earlier, well, then that plane gets dispatched quicker and everyone gets home sooner. The alternative is finding hotels and other accommodations late at night - and if I could avoid that, I would.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 28 guests

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos