We Need To Make Changes
No matter how anyone tries to spin this, American's schedule change is bad news for Worcester Airport today. It has been only 6 months and American wants to go from 14 flights to 4 flights per week starting June 6th.
It is true that after one month, the American website goes back to a full schedule but will it? The spin will be that it is only one month, the sky is not falling. Truth is American changed the schedule for one month, because they are not selling enough tickets.
That is the definition of a problem.
If a month from now demand does not increase, do not forget we need to add Delta into the mix starting in August, they will extend this 4 times per week schedule for another month. Instead of pretending all is great and that FlyORH are naysayers, we should look at why American is not selling tickets forcing them to make this drastic change only after 6 months!!!
Here are the problems that need to be addressed.
The number 1 problem is that Worcester Airport has a bad image. Despite the fact we are in fact easy to get to, have CAT III landing equipment, low parking rates (7 per day) and 3 major airlines flying out of ORH, nobody knows about it!!!
* no traffic
* no tolls
* not tunnels
Our marketing consists of the hastag #WhyIFlyORH on Twitter, while our Airport Director says there is no need to market in Central Mass, since everyone knows about the services at Worcester Airport?
People right here in Worcester have no idea about all the options we have!!!! Maybe a couple billboards on Route 290???? How about a marketing plan to change our image?? How about a spokesperson like Worcester native Denis Leary??
In retrospect bringing in an airline, whose pilots were not CAT II certified and planes that could not take advantage of our CAT III landing system leading to many cancellations and diversions, might have been a mistake. Not to mention not having a mechanic on duty for morning flights.
Lets hope that Piedmont can get their pilots CAT II certified ASAP or maybe American can bring in planes that can take advantage of our brand new CAT III Landing system?? Also now that Ross Aviation has taken over Rectrix, maybe they will have a mechanic on duty for morning flights, not required to be there within 45 minutes.
Hub flights Versus Direct Flights
JetBlue is stuggling to their hub at JFK.
American just cut from 14 to 4 flights to their hub in Philly.
Delta sales do not look strong to their hub in Detroit.
On average these flights are less then half full
On the other hand JetBlue direct to Fort Lauderdale (FLL) and Orlando (MCO) have been strong for over 5 years averaging over 80% loads, with bad times. Maybe we should reconsider the hub idea and just focus on direct leisure flights to Florida, Myrtle Beach and Puerto Rico.
Today's schedule change was a warning shot. We need to make some changes here!!
Or we just say "Never Mind" everything is fine.
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commented on 2019-03-11 15:43:59
I checked the Delta schedule for Worcester to Detroit. One flight to Detroit at 6 a.m. Seriously? Who wants to fly out to Detroit at 6 a.m.?
commented on 2019-03-11 16:12:34
How about adding to TPA - Tampa?
commented on 2019-03-11 17:07:59
We want more Florida instead of this useless flight. No one at ORH will ever listen and actually try to build the market instead of stuffing JFK and Detroit down our throat. Speaking of Detroit despite the schedule have you seen the prices?? If I’m a loyal Delta customer I’ll keep paying less for more options and reliability at Providence and Logan all day.
commented on 2019-03-11 18:23:43
I think we're all getting stressed out for no reason. JB. AA and Delta wanted no part of ORH. They made a business decision to suck up lousy load factors here in order to increase their footprint at Logan. They're going to do the bare minimum at ORH to keep Massport off their backs. This explains why they're not spending money for marketing or adjusting schedules to maximum load factors. THEY DON"T CARE. I would be willing to bet 25% of my 401(k) that in two years we're either going to have the same or less flights from these carriers. As far as the direct FL flights, they have all done pretty well from the airlines we had here in the past. I remember flying Carnival and Pan Am when they were here. Massport doesn't seem to be able to close a deal with any airlines they don't have by the balls.
commented on 2019-03-11 20:22:11
True, Common Sense good stuff. Frontier would have been perfect here but they went with the safe bet at Providence (if they even considered ORH at all). Would have given Worcester travelers more options instead of the garbage options we have now. For those who will ask - no, I would not go back to no commercial service. But I'm getting there with this stuff, which I repeat, doesn't happen ANYWHERE else.
commented on 2019-03-11 21:02:45
I just read that Tim Murray was very surprised about AA cutting service at ORH. What a joke since his Chamber does nothing to market the airlines we have (other than attend meetings). Why is this dope making $200,000+ a year?
commented on 2019-03-12 06:40:50
I don’t understand how Massport has not been able to get ORH in a better position for success yet. To me and I’m just a 2-3 flights per year customer but the planes should have been Cat III from the beginning why bring in an airline that is subject to cancellations when we just had this big financial upgrade. Flight times could be better too and you have to wonder why we are the only airport with two business route with such limited service. I know Massport are the experts but every business has to listen to their customers if they want to be successful. ORH should target Frontier, spirit or Allegiant if we can’t make these flights work.
commented on 2019-03-12 11:52:42
Tim MacDonald way too much common sense. great points.