DL keeps growing seattle


Corn Field
Dec 5, 2003
The DOT agrees that DL's new SEA flight will provide the best use of one of the 4 US carrier HND flights. DL returned its DTW-HND authority and requested SEA-HND in partnership with AS.

DL retains 2 of the 4 US carrier HND flights.
Good for SEA. I know HA has done quite well on their Haneda flights, the schedules they operate from HNL are more conducive to the HND restrictions. I'm curious if all these other new transpacific flying does well if they will add HKG from SEA since it was pulled from DTW earlier this year.

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you would think HKG and TPE would both be on the "possible" list. The advantage of SEA is that a 763, one of the lowest trip cost and smallest widebodies, can make do many SEA-Asia flights, so it is a good aircraft to develop the market.

DOT data shows that HKG from the east coast and midwest doesn't generate the level of revenues for US carriers (probably do to the strength of CX) that China does so it makes sense to serve HKG in the most efficient manner possible.

China and other markets in SE Asia are growing faster than HKG and DL does have Chinese partners but none in HKG.

Note that the DOT has stated in the decision that DL and AS' relationship even though not an immunized relationship is strong enough to provide the feed necessary to make the route work while also arguing that AA and UA continue to enjoy ATI w/ their Japanese partners. Thus, it appears that any well-developed business relationship between airlines is sufficient to achieve the objectives of providing market mass in the eyes of the DOT.
We could re-title it the shrinking of DTW.

I'm not sure that's completely accurate. Since the NW merger DL has added several new long-haul flights at DTW and substituted larger 737, 757, 767, and even 777s on some domestic routes at DTW. Off the top of my head they have added GRU, ICN, PEK, and PVG. They did have HKG & HND that have been cut but you know full well that all airlines add flights, some do well and stick around while unprofitable flying gets cut. I fly DL to DTW occasionally and they seem to be doing very well there. If we were talking about CVG or MEM you have a point but I think its clear DTW plays a big role in DLs network.

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... as does MSP. DTW has shrunk below average compared to the reduction in capacity in DL's network.

DL has added many longhaul destinations that are possible because of the 777 and 767; 744s and 330s were too big for those routes when NW operated the hub.

CVG and MEM were the expected casualties of consolidation... fewer hubs are needed to still provide nationwide and global coverage.
But it is also the reduction of CVG and MEM that make it possible for DL to add mainline flights in markets as the network is concentrated on fewer hubs.

DL has added capacity to SEA and come up w/ a non-traditional approach to building a very strong west coast gateway to Asia... providing the int'l flights on its a/c and using AS flights as domestic feeders in addition to DL's hub flights.
Even w/ the reduction of HKG - which still could come back from another hub - DL is adding SEA-PVG and upgauging SEA-NRT in addition to the new SEA-HND flight.