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Airlines eye new slots at Haneda (Tokyo)

jpp42

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Strange, as an outside casual observer, I would have thought VA would concentrate on sorting out the sh.. pile they are currently drowning in before launching into a new route for which have have no experience in, no established on the ground infrastructure, and will probably be loss making for at least 12 months while they buildup marketing, clientele and familiarity with the option being available.
A large part of the Qantas submission seems to be aimed directly at VA with they way they highlight the ability for QF to commence operations right at 20 March 2020, without any of those risks.
 

dajop

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Strange, as an outside casual observer, I would have thought VA would concentrate on sorting out the sh.. pile they are currently drowning in before launching into a new route for which have have no experience in, no established on the ground infrastructure, and will probably be loss making for at least 12 months while they buildup marketing, clientele and familiarity with the option being available.
In practice they do need to, as you say sort out the sh.. pile they are in. However they also still need to play the chess game with Qantas unless they plan on walking away from the table altogether. If they don't put in an application, those slots will effectively be gone forever and ceded to Qantas. If they do, and add ANA to their "bespoke" or "claytons" alliance, then it may work out for them, although they don't have a lot of time up their sleeve, only 6 months. If they are granted the slots and don't take them up, then what happens? I guess QF grab them and they are in no worse situation than if they cede them right now.
 

Himeno

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I've been checking for the applications to appear since the slots were announced. Looks like they dropped in while I was at work.

Does VA even have any aircraft able to get to Tokyo available, or would they have to pull HKG flights?
QF does make a point of mentioning, and highlighting "no risk" many times in their document.

Since IASC wants to get this sorted out ASAP (by end of month), there isn't going to be the normal debate that we sometimes get over controversial or high profile applications (eg, the QF/CX codeshare request).

Though if QF get MEL-HND and move it from NRT, they'll likely need another AU-NRT route, either their own metal, or a codeshare, to meet the requirements.
 

jpp42

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Though if QF get MEL-HND and move it from NRT, they'll likely need another AU-NRT route, either their own metal, or a codeshare, to meet the requirements.
That was a previous requirement about operating into HND, does it still apply with this new release though? They still have BNE-NRT to match the original SYD-HND allocation. Alternatively, can it be fulfilled by JQ flights as "Qantas Group?"
 

jakeseven7

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Do VA have spare 333 to put on the route? Would be good to see them collaborate with NH as you suggest.
Sure if they bin the HKG service which is struggling and exacerbated by the ongoing unrest / or pull the last few A330's off trans con. But that hands trans con J comfort to QF on a platter...

Strange, as an outside casual observer, I would have thought VA would concentrate on sorting out the sh.. pile they are currently drowning in before launching into a new route for which have have no experience in, no established on the ground infrastructure, and will probably be loss making for at least 12 months while they buildup marketing, clientele and familiarity with the option being available.
Yes but sorting their sh.. pile means taking opportunities too... I mean how often do slots to HND come up...? If they bin a basket case route and replace it with a good one then may be worth considering? and Japan - AU is booming. Maybe they should at least try.

A large part of the Qantas submission seems to be aimed directly at VA with they way they highlight the ability for QF to commence operations right at 20 March 2020, without any of those risks.
Yes that is as subtle as a sledgehammer. Recalling the nightmare VA launch to LAX where they missed all their deadlines and had to rebook their pax onto QF for weeks and weeks....
 

Isochronous

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Sure if they bin the HKG service which is struggling and exacerbated by the ongoing unrest / or pull the last few A330's off trans con. But that hands trans con J comfort to QF on a platter...



Yes but sorting their sh.. pile means taking opportunities too... I mean how often do slots to HND come up...? If they bin a basket case route and replace it with a good one then may be worth considering? and Japan - AU is booming. Maybe they should at least try.



Yes that is as subtle as a sledgehammer. Recalling the nightmare VA launch to LAX where they missed all their deadlines and had to rebook their pax onto QF for weeks and weeks....
Would be an odd move given that the VS joint venture just got approved.
 
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Himeno

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That submission mentions that the A380 is now approved to fly to Japan. Would this just be for special charters or contingency situations? I would think that with double daily B787 services on SYD-HND, that the A380 wouldn't be required to replace the B747 here?

Also, it's buried in there but it's worth noting that the MEL-HND will replace MEL-NRT and remain an A330, so there's not any change in number of seats overall from MEL-TYO.
A380s have been going to Japan for years. HND can't accept them due to congestion, aircraft spacing and taxiway spacing. There can only be 1 A380 on the ground at HND at a time, and, in most cases, they can only use the night slot period.

The A380 approval mentioned in the Qantas application is in relation to the time it has taken to get an A380 added to the Japanese register of Qantas operated aircraft for local regulatory requirements in order to operate their charter/points plane to NRT.
Qantas is saying that VA can't fly to Japan as they don't have any presence there, they have no registration in Japan, Japan hasn't approved their AU AOC and their fleet isn't approved in Japan. The time required for VA to complete all that paperwork will take at least 8 months, thus they are not in a position to be able to operate flights to Japan in less then 5 - assuming they even have enough aircraft to do so.

That was a previous requirement about operating into HND, does it still apply with this new release though? They still have BNE-NRT to match the original SYD-HND allocation. Alternatively, can it be fulfilled by JQ flights as "Qantas Group?"
The NRT requirement was added after LH and NH tried to move all their Germany flights from NRT to HND during the first slot allocation. BA also tried to do the same. The HND slot releases are meant to increase capacity, service and competition to Tokyo, not to cannibalize flights to NRT.
LH got around the "must maintain services to NRT" rule by adding a codeshare on the NH flight.

They won't be able to claim "maintaining service to NRT" by using JQ11, but they could likely get away with claiming service via QF251 (JQ11) and QF249 (JQ25).
 

The-Aviator

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This is exciting news! Makes me wonder if that tie up with NH is gaining any traction. Could be a new option for flights to Europe/North America
 

jakeseven7

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Would be an odd move given that the VS joint venture just got approved.
I'm just not sure that VS is going to save them on that route.... that is the question I suppose

Perhaps if they cut either MEL or SYD, maintain one HKG service and see if they can snare 1 Tokyo slot.

But to @Himeno 's point and post above, could they do it in time?
 

Pleb Status

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VA first announced their intention to fly Australia-HKG on 17 February 2017.


VA received interim approval from the ACCC on 20 March 2017.


VA announced that they would launch MEL-HKG flights on 21 March 2017.


VA operated their first MEL-HKG service on 05 July 2017.


VA were able to launch an international service to a city they did not serve previously in less than five months (from intention to serve to operating). It could be argued that it was actually less than four months in reality (from interim approval to operating).

If an Australia-HND slot is awarded to VA on 31 October 2019 as currently scheduled, there would be just less than five months to launch the new service in late March 2020 (any Japanese regulatory requirements excluded).

VA have been able to launch a brand new service to a city they have not served previously within the timeframe provided (see the timeline and links above), so they should be able to do it again (once again, any Japanese regulatory requirements excluded).

If Japanese regulatory requirements require a small delay to the commencement of the new route, do you entrench an effective monopoly/oligopoly for years to come for the sake of a month or two of operation of an expansion route...
 
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p--and--t

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In practice they do need to, as you say sort out the sh.. pile they are in. However they also still need to play the chess game with Qantas unless they plan on walking away from the table altogether. If they don't put in an application, those slots will effectively be gone forever and ceded to Qantas. If they do, and add ANA to their "bespoke" or "claytons" alliance, then it may work out for them, although they don't have a lot of time up their sleeve, only 6 months. If they are granted the slots and don't take them up, then what happens? I guess QF grab them and they are in no worse situation than if they cede them right now.
I wish them well. If they win one or two slots and get the service up and make it profitable - wins all round - especially for consumers, the more competition the better.

One query I would make though, excuse me if I have misread some of the other posts, if Japan is so lucrative/attractive, haven't VA had the open opportunity to fly there for years under the open skies agreement - e.g. to KIX or NRT
 

dajop

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One query I would make though, excuse me if I have misread some of the other posts, if Japan is so lucrative/attractive, haven't VA had the open opportunity to fly there for years under the open skies agreement - e.g. to KIX or NRT
Well the VA code goes there already. Maybe they're seeing an upswing in the VA coded traffic on SQ, and/or moving closer to NH (who have recently pushed back into AU market, after years of absence, at one point NH worked closely with AN). That might make venture more worthwhile. Probably a better, more financially stable partner than HX, not that they had much choice with HX. Conversely SQ might not be so happy with VA operated Japan service .....
 
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jpp42

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Why would anyone actually use a VA-coded SQ flight when there are so many nonstop options from the major east coast cities? Singapore adds many hours flight time and the added hassle of a change, despite it being a great airport it just seems unnecessary. I can't imagine there are that many FF'ers that loyal to VA to do this. If you're ex-PER or ex-ADL then maybe ...
 

pauly7

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I wish them well. If they win one or two slots and get the service up and make it profitable - wins all round - especially for consumers, the more competition the better.

One query I would make though, excuse me if I have misread some of the other posts, if Japan is so lucrative/attractive, haven't VA had the open opportunity to fly there for years under the open skies agreement - e.g. to KIX or NRT
Partly because their part owners leaned on them to fly to Abu Dhabi, Hong Kong etc...

I think VA might as well have a stab at Japan... why not, the alternative A330 international destination is not working!
 

jase05

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Do VA have spare 333 to put on the route? Would be good to see them collaborate with NH as you suggest.
Could VA drop their frequency to HKG?
Say SYD-HKG 4 times per week and MEL-HKG 3 times per week, that would free up an aircraft.
Only throwing ideas out there and don’t know if it’s feasable or not but then with the 1 free aircraft would it be possible to split it between cities ie SYD-HND 4 times per week, MEL-HND the other 3 days. A partnership with NH would be good also IMO
 

pauly7

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Could VA drop their frequency to HKG?
Say SYD-HKG 4 times per week and MEL-HKG 3 times per week, that would free up an aircraft.
Only throwing ideas out there and don’t know if it’s feasable or not but then with the 1 free aircraft would it be possible to split it between cities ie SYD-HND 4 times per week, MEL-HND the other 3 days. A partnership with NH would be good also IMO
Anything is possible I guess but premium corporate pax demand frequency.

My feeling would be that they try and maintain daily on one HKG route, drop the other completely and give Japan a real go with as close to daily as they can manage.
 

dajop

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Why would anyone actually use a VA-coded SQ flight when there are so many nonstop options from the major east coast cities? Singapore adds many hours flight time and the added hassle of a change, despite it being a great airport it just seems unnecessary. I can't imagine there are that many FF'ers that loyal to VA to do this. If you're ex-PER or ex-ADL then maybe ...
Usually the same three reasons people take longer connecting routes anywhere:
1. Price
2. Price
3. Price
 

jpp42

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Usually the same three reasons people take longer connecting routes anywhere:
1. Price
2. Price
3. Price
I haven't found SQ to be price competitive to Japan (from SYD) when I've looked. Obviously there are exceptions , but in general it seems SQ has pretty high loads into Australia as it is - they don't need to heavily discount.
 

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