Gatwick chief eyes airline alliance move?

Profile picture for user cloud_9

Member for

14 years

Posts: 2,343

I read this rather interesting article from the FT earlier... http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/99a7b9da-21c9-11e3-9b55-00144feab7de.html#axzz2g5QNgLZa This makes a lot of sense in my opinion and if it were to happen, I would suspect that of the two alliances (SkyTeam or Star), it would more than likely be SkyTeam that choose to move over to LGW. Why's that you may be asking yourself...? 1. Star has a far bigger operation out of LHR compared to SkyTeam, so it would make sense for Star to remain at LHR. 2. I can't see Singapore Airlines moving their flights from LHR (x3 of them are operated with A380's!); plus with Thai Airways due to begin operating their A380 into LHR soon, LGW would require a lot of modifications in order to accomodate so many big aircraft at any one time if Star moved. 3. If you look at all the Star carriers that currently serve LGW, there are only European carriers (LH, LX, OU, TK & TP) that fly there, some of which only serve LGW on a seasonal basis. 4. If you look at the SkyTeam carriers, Air Europa already serves Madrid, Vietnam Airlines already serves Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City and Garuda Indonesia, a future member of SkyTeam, is planning to introduce non-stop flights between Jakarta and Gatwick next year. Also, Korean Airlines have experience of operating into LGW as they used to serve LGW in addition to their LHR flights. 5. I heard a rumour from a colleague at work very recently that Alitalia are on the verge of moving their flights over to LGW. 7. The only real downside would be for EasyJet, who would more than likely have to give up or at least slim-down the number of flights to places such as AMS, FCO/MXP because Alitalia and KLM would more than likely operate more flights a day. This could also work to EasyJet's advantage as they could easily make use of their aircraft on other destinations/routes in order to avoid over-supplying these particular routes. 6. A major benefit to LGW if SkyTeam moved is that Delta would move it's flights back to LGW (they also have past experience of flying from LGW!), and it would re-establish links to key US destinations...ATL, BOS, DTW, JFK, MSP and beyond. 7. If #6 happened, could/would Virgin Atlantic follow suit and move all their flights from LHR...? They are 49% owned by Delta now; plus VS are still weighing up whether or not to join an alliance, and of all the alliances SkyTeam would be the most suitable. Moving from LHR to LGW would allow them to join-up their LAS/MCO and other leisure routes with the rest of their network, and again it would be a major benefit to LGW as it would open up new destinations within the US that Delta does not serve directly (IAD, LAX, MIA, SFO) and other destinations around the world such as BOM, CPT, DEL, HKG, JNB, NRT, PVG & SYD (via HKG). 8. If #6 & #7 happend, would BA consider moving all of their LGW operations over to LHR? So all in all, I think this is a good thing and one of the more plausable solutions to help solve the UK's aviation capacity crisis.
Original post