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Author Topic: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough  (Read 6681 times)

Offline LemonButt

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #40 on: August 28, 2012, 05:35:23 PM »
Is there a reason you spell out the airport names?  i.e. using Cincy instead of CVG etc.  I personally do the same thing as you in notepad, but I use the airport codes so I can input them directly into the browser URL when creating the routes.  I don't group by flight time and just have a general idea of how many miles I can fly in a given day with a given aircraft with a given number of turns.  For example, I know that I can fly 2400nm/day on a BAC 1-11 if I have 3 routes, so if I fly 600nm twice, I can fly a third route 1200nm to fill the schedule.

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #41 on: August 28, 2012, 05:45:37 PM »
Is there a reason you spell out the airport names?  i.e. using Cincy instead of CVG etc.  I personally do the same thing as you in notepad, but I use the airport codes so I can input them directly into the browser URL when creating the routes.  I don't group by flight time

I'm grouping by distance. So I don't input airport codes into the browser url, I open a couple of route planning tabs, and put in the relevant distance. Then open the routes I want in a new tab by middle-clicking from that route planning page. I find that a much quicker way to open multiple routes than repeatedly putting stuff in as a url. And I find airport names on a list quicker by scanning for actual names, rather than scanning for 3 letter codes that are meaningless to me.

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #42 on: August 28, 2012, 07:04:30 PM »
One other thing, caused by flying to so many destinations thanks to so many small routes. In MT, I fly to 233 airports. My marketing budget is 6.3 million/week. That's 3% of my revenue. And enough to have my CI sitting at 90. In NAC, I fly to 125 airports. My marketing budget is 2.4 million, more than 10% of revenue. Which has my CI stuck at 30. I've now scheduled all 48 planes. It cost me 7 million in slot fees for the 6 planes I just scheduled. Updated plan out to 500 NM is attached. As are the AN-140 & Q400 schedules. Won't post any more schedule screenies in this thread, at least until I put 7 days from this world or MT. My schedules usually look like this for shorthaul planes, as any big white gaps are simply times your plane isn't making money.

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #43 on: August 28, 2012, 07:19:59 PM »
And my current financial position.

As you can see, 11 mill in the bank, 5 mill in unsecured loans available, and another 57 mill in secured loans available to me. I've also got 10 more leased AN-140s on order. So I have access to 70 million to expand with, if I want to go to a new base. I'm successful, I'm just seriously slowed down by the big overhead, and the high cost of slots relative to revenue. I'm relatively safe from a big airline dropping in. If they really wanted to, they could flood all my routes, take away a chunk of my profits. But they'd lose significantly more money themselves if they used bigger planes, and if they have 50 spare turboprops there are much better spots for them to go. It'd be pretty tough to actually drive me BK, too. Especially if I responded by going for the a318/319 or 737-6/7 that are still plentiful.

Question is, what do I do with that 70 mill? Order 20+ superjets? Open a 2nd base and fly more turboprops? Both?

Incidentally, if I did max out my loans, and order 23 superjets, that'd leave me with 0 cash (or even negative if I did it just before staff got paid), and a -40 million CV. But I'd still be profitable & healthy. That's how you see airlines having 40 million in debts and still going. As long as you've still got positive cashflow and a bit of cash on hand, your CV will slowly recover.
« Last Edit: August 28, 2012, 07:24:11 PM by Sanabas »

Offline Bored

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #44 on: August 29, 2012, 07:47:11 PM »
Hi,

I promised to give you an update when CVG ATL route fills up. Honestly I haven't had time to follow up on my little experiment and it's good I checked in now before going BK... That route is now totally filled, as you can see if you take a look. I don't know how others are performing but with 100 RI my LF has dropped from 95-97% to around 50%. So, I think it's working as it should with frequency / demand / aircraft type. In the old days my setup would have been a killer but now not so much :)

Offline LemonButt

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #45 on: August 29, 2012, 08:15:28 PM »
My crjs are getting 99% load factors on the cvg-atl route :) Not sure if it because the crjs are bigger, faster, or because it is simply a jet over a prop, but either way I can't complain.  A set of slots costs in just atl is over 1 million.

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #46 on: August 29, 2012, 08:25:34 PM »
Hi,

I promised to give you an update when CVG ATL route fills up. Honestly I haven't had time to follow up on my little experiment and it's good I checked in now before going BK... That route is now totally filled, as you can see if you take a look. I don't know how others are performing but with 100 RI my LF has dropped from 95-97% to around 50%. So, I think it's working as it should with frequency / demand / aircraft type. In the old days my setup would have been a killer but now not so much :)

I'm still getting close to 100% loads on my big routes, but I'm not flying anywhere more than 7 times daily, and none of them are hugely oversupplied yet either. Why are you BKing? Just can't overcome the overhead? I just had a good week, no C-checks, and I've sliced my marketing to 1.5 mill, since I can't get CI to move beyond 30 even at 15% of revenue. I made just 1.3 mill on 23 mill revenue. The profit margins are awful.

Attached screenie is from NAC & MT. Top is NAC. Non fuel expenses are double the fuel expenses. And that's with fuel around $1000. Revenue is 2-2.3 times the expenses, and 3-3.5 times the non-fuel stuff.

Bottom is MT. Non fuel expenses are roughly the equal of fuel, with fuel at just $370. Revenue is at least triple total expenses, and at least 6 times the non-fuel stuff.

Was an announcement that the Sukhoi will cease production in a few months if no new orders. So I've got until the end of this gameyear to decide whether to add them, or stick to An-140 + Q400 only.

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #47 on: August 29, 2012, 08:28:59 PM »
My crjs are getting 99% load factors on the cvg-atl route :) Not sure if it because the crjs are bigger, faster, or because it is simply a jet over a prop, but either way I can't complain.  A set of slots costs in just atl is over 1 million.

I think it's more because you have 7 daily flights, whereas Iksu has 16. If 16 flights is overkill, and only gives you about the same number of pax as you'd get with 8-10 or so, then you should have slightly less pax overall, but roughly double the LF.

Offline alexgv1

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #48 on: August 29, 2012, 08:30:28 PM »
Those profit margins are still better than real airlines get, and you are running a regional turboprop airline. So I think what I've seen here is that the game is heading in the right direction. As the huge profit margins were always a problem and the related problems that come with them. Keep up the info please! :)
CEO of South Where Airlines (SWA|WH)

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #49 on: August 29, 2012, 08:45:53 PM »
Those profit margins are without staff, plane leases, maintenance, marketing. I'm at about 5% profit without extra miantenance, and if you factor in that I need a 400k C-check once per week, and 200k/week for monthly B-checks, that profit margin drops to under 3%. If the 5 planes I own were leased too, it'd drop by another 200k/week, down to 4-500k, around 2% of revenue. Might be very realistic to only make 2% of revenue as profit as an airline, but it's not a business model that inspires any sort of confidence. Especially as this is a best case, my planes are flying nearly full, all day, every day.

Offline alexgv1

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #50 on: August 29, 2012, 09:12:36 PM »
I made just 1.3 mill on 23 mill revenue. The profit margins are awful.

Just so you are sure, those are the figures I was talking about not the graphs. Better for the sim there than at 25% on so many levels.
CEO of South Where Airlines (SWA|WH)

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #51 on: August 29, 2012, 09:15:40 PM »
Just so you are sure, those are the figures I was talking about not the graphs. Better for the sim there than at 25% on so many levels.

Fair enough. I agree it's currently really really easy to build a big airline. But if a well-run airline can expect to only make 1.3 mill on 23 mill revenue (and only 500k when you factor in heavy maintenance & not owning any planes), there aren't going to be many successful airlines.

Offline alexgv1

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #52 on: August 29, 2012, 09:20:12 PM »
True there has to be a balance. The way I see it is that lower profit margins will:

Improve player retention in games as it takes decades to make an airline with 100s of planes
The production lines for popular aircraft remain more accessible
Takes longer to lock down a base in terms of slots and routes
Late starts will be easier for these reasons

Although I'm sure there are counter arguments too. I still think the marketing and staff costs effect airlines running smaller planes more harshly, thus a careful approach to business must be adapted. But mid size jet airlines should get the good compromise of margins for the less experience player, but should we encourage this...?
CEO of South Where Airlines (SWA|WH)

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #53 on: August 29, 2012, 09:36:26 PM »
Don't know if it would improve player retention. It might take longer to grow really huge, but it might also get boring quicker.

I think the problem is that if you make it hard enough, have profit margins low enough, that growing huge takes much much longer, even with a good start and not much comp, then you've also made it so hard that minor mistakes become fatal, especially if there is comp. If you make it easy enough that minor mistakes can be overcome relatively easily, and it takes obvious, major mistakes to BK you, then people who make less mistakes and are very efficient will be growing huge at a relatively fast rate.

To me, and especially after trying to run this airline, the problem is more in the relative difference in profitability between 737/a320/MD90, LH, 50-60 seat turboprops, and <30 seaters. 2-3 years in, and the most viable airline in terms of plane availability in MT is to use turboprops. MD80s are just starting to become available now. But turboprops, even if you use them reasonably well, are likely to bite you with overhead & maintenance, it's much harder to build an all-turboprop airline than an all-150 seater airline, given similar plane availability.

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #54 on: August 29, 2012, 10:16:58 PM »
B-check week was a 700k loss. I could go through all my routes trying to play with prices and generate more money, but that's far too tedious. I've just reset all of them to a uniform 10% above default, as I have a lot of planes flying full. Now will put anything with a sub 80% LF back down to default. *edit* nope, that's too tedious too. I've left everything at +10%, we'll see what happens. I'm only a small airline, but I've got 5 pages of routes. There isn't a practical way to play with prices, and have those changes persist as default prices change.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2012, 10:24:36 PM by Sanabas »

Offline Bored

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #55 on: August 30, 2012, 08:01:22 AM »
Thanks for posting all this. Sadly I wasn't paying attention to my experiment and no amount of TLC will turn this ship around. I was planning to test what effect I would get by reducing frequency to ATL by half but no can do... I strongly believe that current model is actually better for a regional carrier than before. One just needs to proceed slowly due to RI effecting loads in the start coupled with slots costs.

Have fun and please keep posting, it's fun to read.

Brgds, Iksu

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #56 on: August 30, 2012, 11:55:27 AM »
I've ordered some more planes in order to avoid tax. Have decided to stick to all-turboprop, since that was the plan at the start. If I end up headed for BK, so be it. I'm now pretty much out of routes for the Antonovs, still have some more space for Q400s. Once the year ticks over, I'll be looking for a new airport to base in. See just how much the costs increase, and if a 2nd base of 30-40 turboprops is actually profitable. Overall LFs haven't changed much with the ticket increase. First page of routes has LFs of 92.6% or more, and some are near 100. I'm probably costing myself some money with the overpriced tickets on the less full routes. But as I said, it's too tedious to try and micromanage those. Profits have picked up a bit, up to 2-2.5 mill/week now if there isn't a B-check or heavy maintenance.

Attached screenie shows why you really should fly at night.

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #57 on: August 30, 2012, 12:03:10 PM »
It just ticked over to Mon Jan 4, meaning the year is now over. I ordered one plane too many on the last day, finished with a ~1 million loss on the year. Still have ~10 mill in the bank, and almost 14 million in tax refund due in 11 days. I'll use that for the new base, once I decide where it is going.

Offline LemonButt

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #58 on: August 30, 2012, 12:37:37 PM »
Dallas Love seems like an appropriate base.  Your marketing campaign could be Dallas Loves Bettis...the Cowboy fans would eat that up.

Offline Sanabas

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Re: AirBettis - An AWS walkthrough
« Reply #59 on: August 30, 2012, 04:25:17 PM »
Dallos Love is small, has a profitable airline housed there already, and most importantly, is somewhat isolated. I count under 100 daily An-140 flights available inside 500 NM, maybe 110 if I want to fly empty 30-40 pax routes. From Pittsburgh, there's close to 200. I don't mind if there's an airline already there, but I'd rather one that doesn't look very healthy, has overexpanded, has big planes, or all 3. And I'd prefer something with more options. I don't see anywhere empty, I see a few options that have 1 or 2 airlines already, and could be good.

 

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