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Everything posted by AvWatcher

  1. The issue for Toronto was that it had very mild weather - with freezing rain and then rain - and then it got cold - which turned any concrete surface into a skating rink - and salt didn't help. So it wasn't just the temperature - it was the weather just before the cold snap.
  2. The Air Canada Unions need to realize that they have to quit winning the battles (if you call it winning) - and losing the war. The public is getting fed up with strikes, potential strikes, strike notices, strike votes, and are walking away from the airline due to the uncertainty. Which in turn means Air Canada's revenue drops, which means that Air Canada's expenses must drop, which means that Air Canada will lay more people off, and ask for concessionary contracts, which means the Unions will take more action. It's a vicious circle which will not end until CCAA - again, and they are forced into taking concessionary contracts - and away they go again. There needs to be far more behind the scenes dialogue between the Unions and Air Canada to discuss mutual issues, and quit squabbling in public - which only helps their competition grow and prosper.
  3. I believe one may have been the 737 in the First Air accident.
  4. You obviously forget that Porter is one of the Star's more prolific advertisers - with almost daily full page ads. Only softball questions were allowed.
  5. Jennifer Beautiful part of the world. We spent 10 days touring the Andalucia region which is SouthWest of where you are staying. If you feeling adventurous - you should see the Alhambra in Granada which is the most popular tourist attraction in Spain. Be sure to buy your tickets online before you go if you do. The Rock of Gibraltar is wonderful to see - and the beaches near it are a kite-surfers dream. If you do make a swing through Andalucia, try to hit Cadiz, Seville and Cordoba in addition to the above. The churches are amazing - many are part Muslim, part Catholic, and in some cases, part Jewish, back in the days when religions actually got along. The history of the area is wonderful as well, as the Moors and Christians taking turns capturing various cities. Enjoy!
  6. If you read the article, United did not take off the passengers who paid the least. They had a weight problem - it happens. Standard airline procedure would be to ask for volunteers first, which they did, then, if there if aren't enough volunteers, you deny boarding to those who checked in last - ie. begin working backwards - which is what they "threatened" - again standard procedure to try and get volunteers. They eventually got enough volunteers. Classic situation where the headline does not reflect the facts.
  7. I'm not sure one operator (the USAF) insourcing one aircraft type (the CF-17) after a contract (which guarantees 90% aircraft availablity - not exactly standard) with Boeing (hardly a model for low cost) without tremendous controversy (since when can the Air Force/government do anything cheaper - than even Boeing) is hardly a wave for the future. It could be, but not necessarily because of this decision.
  8. Let's go back to Porter's financial statements. Their accounting is the classic reason so many airlines run into financial problems. They don't account for maintenance correctly. Every hour you fly an aircraft, is an hour closer to an A, B, C or D check (or whatever checks must be done) and another hour on time/landing limited parts. When you start out as an airline with brand new equipment, if you don't account for those future maintenance expeditures, you fool yourself into thinking you're making (or in Porter's case, losing less) money, when your true situation is much worse. What happens now using their "charged as incurred" philosophy, is that at one point in the future, when a bunch of aircraft all hit "D" checks at the same time, as well as engine overhauls, their financial statements tank, and everyone wonders why. The only airlines that should use "charge as incurred" maintenance accounting are airlines who have a mix of new and old aircraft, and whose maintenance expenses as a result are fairly consistent. It's not only just maintenance materials etc. that go up; salaries, in the form of mechanics, aircraft needed for maintenance spares for repairs, and for planned checks will tank Porter's CASM as well. So having a fleet with an average age of 1 1/2 years is good - but what is coming around the corner needs to be recognized for potential investors. Note that while Porter has entered into a "power by the hour" arrangement for their engines, they are only accounting for the expense when the engine goes in for work, which again is delaying their costs instead of accounting for them when the hours are incurred. It's classic startup airline philosophy, and one reason so many airlines don't make it very far down the runway. And one would think why Porter wants to get its money now, before those costs start showing up on their statements. I'm not saying Porter won't make it, it just would be nice to see what the true financial situation is now, in order to project what it could be in the future.
  9. You must be under the mistaken impression that newspapers exist to tell the truth. The reality is that newspapers exist to sell more newspapers. Never let the facts get in the way of a story that might help do that.
  10. It's actually quite simple - Thomas Cook has selected Jazz to fly their aircraft. They will then select ground handlers at each station they will fly to - but the fact that Jazz is flying the aircraft will have little bearing - other than a little goodwill - on whom Thomas Cook selects. And if I'm correct, they only fly into major Canadian cities - meaning the Jazz handling there is done by Air Canada. Historically, they have selected Servisair, but that is historically.
  11. I would look at the Air Canada and WestJet websites, and look for corporate presentations - usually Power Point - and in many of them they will indicate how much of their sales are coming via the internet.
  12. If we focus on local traffic, and not on long haul connections as originally proposed, there is one issue. That is the traffic is uni-directional. Friday nights, it's all north bound, Sundays or Mondays it's all southbound. So the absolute best the airline could do would be a 50% PLF. Airlines normally need to find routes that make money Tuesdays at noon, or at least contribute to overhead. There are lots of routes that would do well on Friday's at 5:00pm, and Sundays at 7:00pm, but what do you do with the infrastructure in between? The one option, is for the city/town/municipality to guarantee a certain revenue stream, but the chances of Muskoka doing that are probably pretty low.
  13. Issue for this route is the alternative ie. car. Unless you can have almost hourly departures, with only a 2 hour drive - you'll lose most of your traffic to the rental car kiosks. Local traffic might be interested going up Friday nights, and coming down Sunday nights, but that would be it. As far as AC goes, would it create incremental traffic on its current route system to subsidize the route? - doubtful, as I doubt many people are turned off by having to drive 2 hours after they arrive in Pearson if they were headed to Muskoka. All these negatives, even before you talk about no security, therefore unsecured operations, and no on-line connections etc. Just having air service without a ton of promotion (especially difficult in these "par" dollar days) will not draw in the passengers to any great extent.
  14. Steve's memorial service will be today, Friday Feb. 12th, 11:00am, at Trinity United Church, 100 Main St. West, Grimsby, Ont. http://www.lifenews.ca/thespec/profile/76162--babb-stephen-sinclair-august-4-1963
  15. Stan Deluce started the careers of many of us in the Aviation industry, and his legend will live on. A truly great man. http://v1.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/Deaths.20100129.93221407/BDAStory/BDA/deaths
  16. This is a very, very sad and awful death for a wonderful man. My heart goes out to his family, as well to the Vogl family. Steve was a good guy, and a great pilot. I will always remember him and his smile. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/british-columbia/two-skiers-die-at-revelstoke-resort/article1449683/ Sarah Boesveld From Saturday's Globe and Mail Published on Friday, Jan. 29, 2010 4:22PM EST Last updated on Friday, Jan. 29, 2010 10:44PM EST .The decent snow conditions and the heady buzz of anticipation should have been a good omen for the Grimsby, Ont., group when it hit the slopes of Revelstoke Mountain Resort. Steve Babb, 46, his son Colin, 16, and family friend Sam Vogl, 17, visited the B.C. mountain town as an exam week getaway and had limited time to enjoy the freedom of whizzing down the hills. Around 1 p.m. on Thursday the midget hockey coach and the teens, both talented minor hockey players, glided off the Ripper Chair ski lift and into the powder of the mountain's north bowl, a moderately difficult run. For reasons unexplained, they decided to go out of bounds – off the run and into a steep, wooded area with a hard-packed surface, said Sergeant Art Kleinsmith from the Revelstoke RCMP detachment. They took off their skis and tried to ascend the icy chute, an inclined trough on the mountainside. But they slid down 100 metres on the rough ground and then over a cliff. Mr. Babb and Mr. Vogl died at the bottom, their bodies broken by the fall. Colin Babb survived to make a frantic 911 call from his cellphone, Sgt. Kleinsmith said. An ambulance arrived at 3 p.m. and took the young man to Vernon, B.C., with a badly sprained ankle and bruises. “This boy was hysterical, he was injured, he was in a place he didn't want to be and it was getting dark,” Sgt. Kleinsmith said. The bodies were left on the hill overnight, according to the Revelstoke Times Review. The RCMP has not released the skiers' names, but friends in the close-knit community near St. Catharines, Ont., are devastated by the loss of these upstanding members of the Grimsby Minor Hockey scene. “They're friends of ours, they have friends everywhere,” Ken Watson, president of Grimsby Minor Hockey, said Friday night. “This is going to go right through our community.” Mr. Babb was a pilot for Air Canada and played with Mr. Watson in Grimsby's old-timer league.
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