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Author Topic: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline  (Read 1395 times)

Offline Captim

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Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« on: August 18, 2012, 06:19:03 AM »
Just a post to warn all players about the tactics being employed by this airline.

Despite it's dominant position in the Euro region, it is now resorting to flying 737-8's long haul in order to destroy competition on these routes. A loophole on the game we know is being outlawed for future versions of the main game.

In this CEO's view an airline of this size using these tactics is contemptible, and will be remembered when we play the main game.

I would be interested to know what their alliance partners in 'BlueSkies' think about using a known bug in the game to their advantage, when they certainly have the means to play fair if they wanted too.

Yours,

captim

Mr.HP

  • Former member
Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2012, 02:46:21 AM »
I'm new so I'm not sure about the bug you're talking about. Mind sharing please?

And by long haul, does it mean international flights only? Or it is defined by flight time?

Thanks

Sanabas

  • Former member
Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #2 on: August 19, 2012, 11:38:11 AM »
Ingame routes fall into 3 types:

Domestic (pretty obvious)

International (not domestic, too short for LH)

International Longhaul - This is anything to a different continent and above 2400 NM, or to the same continent and above 3400 NM. Domestic flights can't be called longhaul, no matter how far they are (like Honolulu to New York)

So for example, from Dubai, a flight to Munich (2463 NM) is Longhaul, but a flight to Bangkok (2633 NM) is simply international.


There is no loophole being outlawed. There has been a change for MT & future gameworlds, where narrowbodies (757, 738, a320, etc) and small jets/turboprops will not be as attractive to passengers if the flight is too long. A flight like Orly-Montreal is 2982 NM, and has about 200 pax daily demand. In previous worlds (and the current BW), if one airline has a 767, and one has a 738, they'll split the route roughly 50-50. In MT, and in future gameworlds, the airline with the 767 will get more of the passengers, because they'll choose the widebody instead of spending 8+ hours sitting on a 737.

Offline Captim

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Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2012, 12:49:41 PM »
They are running on International longhaul. Mostly transatlantic at present.

I see why the new system was introduced....



Offline BOEING717

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Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2012, 03:34:58 AM »
Sanabas, I know some PAX don't mind flying the narrowbody TATL (757's do well in real life) I really think the main issue is the 2 plus hours extra a tech stop adds to the route to take on fuel as the main turn off to that way of doing business.

One also has to wonder what the profit margin is on an A/C of about 150 seats when you take even a full load on a TATL route when the max one could get out of said route is 1 return trip per day.

Sanabas

  • Former member
Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2012, 04:03:39 AM »
Sanabas, I know some PAX don't mind flying the narrowbody TATL (757's do well in real life) I really think the main issue is the 2 plus hours extra a tech stop adds to the route to take on fuel as the main turn off to that way of doing business.

The routes the OP is talking about are all direct flights, from Paris to the NE of north america, and the middle east.

Tech stops will cost you pax now, because pax don't like them. But doesn't actually make things that much longer for flight time. A 767 turns in 135 minutes. A 737/a320 takes 40 minutes to tech stop and 70 minutes to turn, so that's only 110 minutes. Plus a bit of extra taxi time. The round trip times are actually pretty similar. In fact, let me go check... I'll use FCO-JFK, direct 767 vs a320 using Gander as a tech stop...

767 direct flight: 23:45 until you can depart from HQ again.
a320 with techstop: 23:40, 5 minutes faster.

Quote
One also has to wonder what the profit margin is on an A/C of about 150 seats when you take even a full load on a TATL route when the max one could get out of said route is 1 return trip per day.

Plenty. Especially when you use 7 day schedules to make things more efficient. And even more beneficial when you're getting 100 pax on each of your 5 a320s, and your competitor is also getting just 100 pax on each of his 3 763s, which are significantly more expensive to operate. Your margins might be slim, but his will be slimmer/non-existent. Which is why the system had a very good change made to it. You can still run those 3000 NM, direct 738 flights, and they'll be great on a route with no competition and only 130 daily pax. But put it on a bigger route, where there are widebodies offered, and it'll get smashed.

Offline Captim

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Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2012, 01:01:24 PM »
The real insanity of the current game is that the 738 is actually a better transatlantic longhauler than a 762ER due it it's shorter turnaround time.

It can fly direct, 7 days a week. The 762 can only run 6 days a week.

Anyway, i've asked Sami to check AC are not also stuffing their 738's full of C class seats and running a 'magic carpet' trick on me.

It's just poor that a airline with massive wealth and fleet options chooses to exploit game loopholes to 'win'.

Lesson learned anyway. i'll not touch any main games where this flaw is in place. At least in the 'Jet Age' I presume there are no narrow bodies that can achieve this transatlantic feat, and therefore the point will be moot.

jwriteclub

  • Former member
Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #7 on: August 31, 2012, 01:31:15 AM »
In the real world, this happens on a variety of segments.

For instance, BA has a C+ only service between JFK and London City on A319s. They also ran triad a 757 Y+ and C+ (about a 50-50 space split) from the East Coast of the US to CDG (and possibly Frankfurt as well?). Iceland air flies exclusively 757 on their long haul routes.

Similarly (sort of), Singapore operates a C only service on their ultra long haul EWR and LAX to Singapore routes.

Based on reading the forum, I understand why these have been made impractical in the simulation, but longer flights on relatively small aircraft can make a lot of sense on a sufficiently high demand route.

Offline Captim

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Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #8 on: August 31, 2012, 05:01:57 PM »
I am aware of the RL flights you mention... and in a C only configuration I can see how the travelling pubic will accept a small a/c non stop on long distance routes, under certain circumstances.

The 757 is a far larger a/c than a 737, and i'd take one transatlantic if it were cheap enough.

It's a bug that there is no penalty, it's being fixed, and it's currently being exploited.

Life goes on.

Offline BOEING717

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Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2012, 09:24:32 PM »
In real life SunCountry flew from MSP to London UK with a tech stop in Gander. I understand it was not cheap enough to really get the masses on their 737 that they were hoping for. I know they were also flying the route to get more ETOPS time but the flight has not been a raging hit.

Offline EsquireFlyer

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Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2012, 11:28:28 PM »
Anyway, i've asked Sami to check AC are not also stuffing their 738's full of C class seats and running a 'magic carpet' trick on me.
Magic carpet is not cheating. The game has a built-in penalty for oversized F and C cabins unless you have a high RI and CI. If you have a high RI and CI, Sami says that magic carpet should work.

It's just poor that a airline with massive wealth and fleet options chooses to exploit game loopholes to 'win'.
People disagree about this, but personally, I agree that flying small narrowbodies on routes big enough to support widebodies, in order to instantly kill the widebodies, is a dirty tactic that exploits flaws in the game engine. For example, the fact that you have to hire many sets of pilots/crew for "very large" aircraft because the system assumes that the plane is flying long-haul with multiple crew shifts, but you only need a few sets of pilots/crew for "large" and "medium" aircraft because the system assumes the plane is flying short haul, and in effect, the 737 attacker gets to force his/her crew to work unpaid overtime. This flaw is not fixed in the new engine. Other flaws (which, fortunately, are fixed in the new engine) are the fact that AWS pax are too dumb to recognize long flight times and tech stops on miniplanes as being worse than a non-stop flight on a widebody.

A few of the ways this tactic is used in AWS would actually be illegal in real life (for example, flying the early 737 series across oceans--they were not ETOPs certified and would not have been allowed to fly over oceans in real life).

I think the new engine strikes a good balance, allowing narrowbodies on routes that aren't quite big enough to support a widebody, but penalizing widebodies on routes big enough to support widebodies.

Lesson learned anyway. i'll not touch any main games where this flaw is in place. At least in the 'Jet Age' I presume there are no narrow bodies that can achieve this transatlantic feat, and therefore the point will be moot.
Actually, in Jet Age, most transatlantic flights are narrowbodies, because the first-generation long haul jets (707, DC-8, etc.) were all narrowbodies. The widebody concept was not invented until the 747, which comes out in mid-to-late Jet Age (along with DC-10 and L-1011), at which point many airlines already have massive 707/DC8 fleets that they will not bother changing out.

Also, in Jet Age, which still uses the old game engine at the moment, 727s and 737s can be tech-stopped across oceans with no noticeable penalty.

If you want to get away from the players using this tactic, you should play one of the games using the new engine, which is currently just MT7 and NAC (but beware, they are harder than Jet Age due to fuel prices). Or wait for JA7 to come out using the new engine.

Offline EsquireFlyer

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Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #11 on: September 12, 2012, 11:36:19 PM »
In the real world, this happens on a variety of segments.

For instance, BA has a C+ only service between JFK and London City on A319s. They also ran triad a 757 Y+ and C+ (about a 50-50 space split) from the East Coast of the US to CDG (and possibly Frankfurt as well?). Iceland air flies exclusively 757 on their long haul routes.

Similarly (sort of), Singapore operates a C only service on their ultra long haul EWR and LAX to Singapore routes.

Based on reading the forum, I understand why these have been made impractical in the simulation, but longer flights on relatively small aircraft can make a lot of sense on a sufficiently high demand route.
No, it's impractical in real life, too. First, all-business is a different issue from small planes. So the Singapore example does not apply, because it's flown on a widebody (A345) which was always designed for long routes.

The Concorde was a narrowbody that routinely flew TATL, but it had a special benefit (speed) to make up for the bad cabin comfort (considering the fare was higher than F, for a seat that was effectively Y). Similarly, BA's A318 magic carpet from LCY to JFK provides a time savings from not having to go to LHR. And, going West, the time added by the techstop in SNN is made up for by the fact that the passengers pre-clear U.S. Customs in Ireland pursuant to a U.S.-Irish agreement (thus a brilliant choice of techstop by BA, IMO), so the flight lands as a US "domestic" flights and pax do not have to clear customs in JFK at all.

longer flights on relatively small aircraft can make a lot of sense on a sufficiently high demand route.
Actually, I would say the opposite: narrowbodies long haul can make sense on long, lean routes; or, when they offer a special benefit that the normal widebody services do not or cannot offer. But if a route is a busy/heavy route, that weighs in favor of a widebody, not in favor of a narrowbody.

Flying narrowbodies long haul in real life is also tricky because, in real life, airplanes that are pushed to the limits of their range can run out of fuel and have to make emergency diversions, which hurt the airline's CI. As shown in this article about Continental, which is probably the most AWS-like airline in terms of using narrowbodies on long-haul routes.
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203436904577152974098241982.html

Offline Captim

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Re: Air Connection a cheap and dirty airline
« Reply #12 on: September 15, 2012, 08:37:55 PM »
Thanks Esquireflyer,

That's a great synopsis of the game as it stands. As a new player it disappointed me to find the game in a state where the 738 is a more efficient transatlantic flyer than a 762 or even a 752.

I have hope for future versions, although the 707/DC8's are narrow bodies by today's standards, I think at the time they were as spacious as an aircraft could be ( length, not girth lol )...

Perhaps this definition should 'move with the times', anyway... I know the score now... I see my future in the DOTM, when its fixed. Until then, hats off to you all for a fine game and community - a little friction is always good for the soul!

No issues ultimately with AC, but I look forward to competing on even terms...

 

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