Ri does not increase faster at two flights per day vs one.
You're 100% right.
"Image of a certain route can be increased by flying the route regularly over a long period of time and with route marketing."
I got this from the Route image page description. Now I figure out that I have understood it wrong.
However, there is a certain point in my strategy. Let me explain better. The same scenario, no competition:
plane with 50 capacity
route A with 100 demand
route B with 50 demand
route C with 50 demand
You start to fly route A offering 50 seats. Let's say that 6 game months later you've got new planes available. Instead of flying route B or C, you'll be better off completing the demand for A, since by that time your RI should be higher on that route. This, for a starter, means having a few more bucks available in books to reinvest. When you grow big, it doesn't matter anymore.
I know that it's not the wisest decision ever. As a passenger, I certainly would not like to fly 4,5h with a prop aircraft to London from Central Europe. But since I am the only one on this route, well...
But then again, I checked each and every country, every possible destination within reach...and that's still the best I could come up with. The only alternatives would be Vienna or Rome (as two examples), but those routes are already flown by some other airlines. The Rome route is indeed interesting because demand is ~80, but the other airline flies 4x daily with a ~20 seat aircraft. Would I be the better choice (in the view of the passengers) if I offer the same route flying a bigger (and slightly faster) aircraft?
The other airline uses N262 and I'd use F27. The demand is currently over-satisfied. So I am not too sure if I should go into battle about this route. There is also Istanbul where the demand is not fully satisfied...but that's again quite a distance for the F27.
You see...there is (at least in my eyes) no real option here. I have to take what I can get my hands on. Or what would you suggest?
My advice is: do not engage in competition games while your airline is small. Try to grow quietly and you'll be fine. Just as an example, if you've got a revenue of 500k$ / week and your competitor 100m$, chances are that once dividing demand in a certain route it will cause more harm to you than to him, since his revenue structure is strong enough to absorb the hit.
I manage a medium regional airline with 74 DC9s (75 to 105 seats) and my planes fly an average of 17.6h. Margin of 23%. All my bases have 3 airlines operating from. My hint is to fly overnight and keep your planes off the ground. Your base airport may be closed from 22h to 6h, however, your last flight can depart at 21h55 head somewhere where you've got an open airfield and return at an hour so that you can arrive after 6h back home. Overnight flights have a certain hit in demand, though. Try to play with time fuse so that you don't fly at too weird hours.