AAs plans for a low cost unit?

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Aug 21, 2002
With Uniteds tentitive plans to start up another version of shuttle opperation on the west coast, do you think AA will, this time go head to head with UAL, and do the same? If there are adjustments to the AA contracts re: pay and work rules and the flying can be shared with AE, it may be wize to do so, as AA missed out on west coast oppertunities with out a west coast network last time and the company has learned that you can not have a strong premium customer base east to west with out keeping butts in seats on AA up and down the coast. To the unions it would be attractive as it would mean jobs back at AA and the customers would rather fly AA metal of AE Rjs anyday...Before it is to late, and AA resorts to snaching up some new low cost carrier down the road (AirCal-Reno) I hope thhis is something on the minds of HDQ...Maybe the 3rd time will be the charmer...
I agree with the point that the lack of a strong West Coast network is a serious impediment to AA maintaining a premium customer base nationwide... If AA had not made their attempt at an SJC mini-hub, I would have had no reason to throw my loyalty to them (it would have gone to United or someone else instead).

However, all the indications are that AA will not attempt to hold together its own West Coast network on AA/AE metal, but will rather rely on the Alaska airlines partnership (in much the same way as United will rely on US Air codeshares to bolster its East Coast appeal). There is one considerable flaw in this strategy at present, which is that AA does not put its code on Alaska flights (the pilots contract prevents them from doing so, I think). The fact that AA does not put its codes on Alaska flights has the effect of reducing the availability and visibility of combined AA-AS itineraries, which probably hurts AA more than anyone else....since Alaska does put its code on many AA flights at this time.
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