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Author Topic: Too Much of a Challenge  (Read 830 times)

Offline Karl

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Too Much of a Challenge
« on: June 08, 2013, 02:51:46 PM »
While it is true that every so often a really big, established carrier goes bankrupt, it seems to me that almost every day (game time) at least 3 or 4 start ups with fewer than 10 aircraft (usually fewer than 3 or 4) go bankrupt.  Most players take advantage of the opportunity to begin again.  Most seem to be bound for yet another failure.

It seems that in this game environment, with the huge number of players and with the very expensive fuel, it is almost impossible for a new airline (even a restart by an experienced player) to last more than a year or two.  It seems that in this environment, those airlines that were able to get huge from the beginning will be the only ones left by the end.  They just have to count on the fact that they got big enough fast enough at the beginning to outlast the ever more expensive fuel price.  Unfortunately, even some of these do not have a big enough cash pile to outlast the game.  Even those that became aircraft brokers will soon realize that there will be fewer and fewer airlines left to take their aircraft on lease or for sale.  Their investments will become a money drain, and then....
 

Offline Andre

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2013, 04:27:44 PM »
While it is true that every so often a really big, established carrier goes bankrupt, it seems to me that almost every day (game time) at least 3 or 4 start ups with fewer than 10 aircraft (usually fewer than 3 or 4) go bankrupt.  Most players take advantage of the opportunity to begin again.  Most seem to be bound for yet another failure.

It seems that in this game environment, with the huge number of players and with the very expensive fuel, it is almost impossible for a new airline (even a restart by an experienced player) to last more than a year or two.  It seems that in this environment, those airlines that were able to get huge from the beginning will be the only ones left by the end.  They just have to count on the fact that they got big enough fast enough at the beginning to outlast the ever more expensive fuel price.  Unfortunately, even some of these do not have a big enough cash pile to outlast the game.  Even those that became aircraft brokers will soon realize that there will be fewer and fewer airlines left to take their aircraft on lease or for sale.  Their investments will become a money drain, and then....
 

I like that we have one game world that is very challenging. Several experienced players have bankrupted (some multiple times). But I like the challenge. In the real world, there are thousands of airlines... every single airline doesn't have to be a major carrier, some just fly small planes. If the simulation could be fixed so that it would be easier to operate small aircraft, that would help.

Offline Infinity

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2013, 04:37:48 PM »
The idea that being huge protects from high fuel prices is a big misconception.

Offline Andre

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2013, 04:44:33 PM »
The idea that being huge protects from high fuel prices is a big misconception.

Yes it just makes it even more of a challenge to restructure.

Offline schro

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2013, 07:09:02 PM »
I have started from scratch in a couple of different MT worlds around 2003-2006 and have had no problem getting a foothold and making it to the end of the game with a top ranking airline...

Offline Karl

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2013, 07:16:56 PM »
I have started from scratch in a couple of different MT worlds around 2003-2006 and have had no problem getting a foothold and making it to the end of the game with a top ranking airline...

Would you mind sharing a bit of your wisdom?

I am especially interested in when and how your are able to get loans and use them to your advantage.

Offline Colsie123

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2013, 11:24:16 PM »
I have managed to start a reasonably successful airline based out of MPTO by focusing on leasing aircraft which have reasonable fuel efficiency,investing in marketing and most importantly choosing correct routes.

When I started here I had a well established competitor and very little route choice I was however, able to find as I feel is the case 80% of the time routes which had been underdeveloped. I focused on serving as large a variety of routes with two aircraft (B736/7) and then stock piling as much as possible to pay of my start up loan within my first year as is my standard strategy as I feel this allows me more room to play with in my finances. I always keep a cash reserve to allow me time to restructure. Currently I keep between 3m-4m as my reserve.

This reserve I feel gives me the chance to react to the changing market and when a new competitor opens up to attempt to compete or as I have had to do look at new strategies such as long haul operations. This has the major disadvantage of bringing in an extra fleet type which really runs up my costs.

All said my experience is it is possible to join the game mid way through if you select carefully enough for the airport and aircraft. I am not saying my strategy is great as in the long haul fo he game I am stuck into very expensive leases across an ever fuel hungry fleet.

Offline Karl

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #7 on: June 09, 2013, 12:09:12 AM »
I have managed to start a reasonably successful airline based out of MPTO by focusing on leasing aircraft which have reasonable fuel efficiency,investing in marketing and most importantly choosing correct routes.

Thanks.  When did you start tour airline?  Recently?

I also have leased used aircraft.  They are old with reasonable monthly leases.  I have 3 aircraft running at almost 95% full.  Yet, I am losing money daily.  There is no way I will make it past upcoming C checks.

Offline Colsie123

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #8 on: June 09, 2013, 12:29:56 AM »
I started my airline around 2 years ago in game time and when I started a pretty big competitor who quit the game not long after I joined. However they did squeeze me out of some routes and so I had to focus on trunk routes. Looking at his times and going for better timed flights ie if his flight left at 7 I would leave at 6 or 8. Not immediately after as he would get the most traffic.

I also invested on route marketing so get my RI up and also general campaign for my CI. I feel these are key to improving and going upwards with my airline.

Offline Kadachiman

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #9 on: June 09, 2013, 01:25:12 AM »
Hi Karl,

I am your competitor in MT.
While it is easy to blame the game mechanics for going B/K in many cases it is actually the game play of the airline CEO.
In my case I went B/K at the same airport I am at now, because I added a different fleet type (jets) too early and once I started heading into red on the balance sheet I could not reverse it.

In my opinion you have made 4 mistakes with your current airline that will see you go B/K (your choice if you want to accept or reject my observations)
1. wrong choice of your 1st fleet type as 30 seats (anything under 40 seats really) will struggle to make a profit - some can make it work but they are experts at this type of game play
2. expanding to 2 fleet types too early -you have a total of 3 airframes - your overheads are likely to be unsustainable
3. spending too much on marketing - you are a very small regional airline with a CI of 28 already....I have 9 regional airframes and a CI of only 12
4. paying yourself too much - you have paid yourself 1.8mill, money that could have been better used.

Regards Kadachiman
« Last Edit: June 09, 2013, 01:33:52 AM by Kadachiman »

Offline schro

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2013, 02:19:09 AM »
Would you mind sharing a bit of your wisdom?

I am especially interested in when and how your are able to get loans and use them to your advantage.

In general, you'll want to pick a HQ that has been recently vacated by a larger airline due to bankruptcy or one that has a couple of weaker incumbents that have left a significant number of slots and unmet demand out of the base. From there, you basically run a tight ship chasing unmet demand and reinvesting your profits until you can start turning up the heat on the others in the base. Basically, don't pick a base with a well run airline in it and you'll do just fine.

As for the loans, it usually takes 3-6 game months before anything worthwhile appears unsecured. While I don't like loans much due to how they complicate taxes, they can be quite handy to seize opportunities like a few good aircraft on the used market, to pay for slots for a few aircraft too many, etc.

Offline Karl

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2013, 04:39:44 AM »
Hi Karl,

I am your competitor in MT.
While it is easy to blame the game mechanics for going B/K in many cases it is actually the game play of the airline CEO.
In my case I went B/K at the same airport I am at now, because I added a different fleet type (jets) too early and once I started heading into red on the balance sheet I could not reverse it.

Regards Kadachiman

Thank you for your input.

This is my fifth and final attempt at an airline in MT. 

I have done pretty much what you suggested in previous attempts (one type, older leased aircraft, low advertising, etc.) - to no avail.  That is why this time I started in AUS running a commuter affair.

Live and learn.

Offline TerryMcKenna

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Re: Too Much of a Challenge
« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2013, 07:33:03 AM »
Hi Karl, I have found the key to any success is establishing one or two good solid routes which become the backbone of your airline.
Having a quick glance at your options I would say that you have several good ones to develope. I would suggest you concentrate on NY La Guardia and NY Newark.
Good Luck :)

 

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