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Delta Air Lines Plans to Halt Atlanta-Dubai Service

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DeltaAir Lines says it will cancel its Atlanta-Dubai flight due to the difficulty of competing with the subsidized Gulf carriers. The flight, operated with a Boeing 777, will end Feb. 11, 2016. After that, Delta’s only non-stop flight to the Middle East will be a New York Kennedy-Tel Aviv flight, and the only U.S. carrier flight to Dubai will be United’s Washington Dulles-Dubai flight. (www.forbes.com) Mehr...

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andyc852
No big surprise. I think it is all about onward connections. EK will start a ATL-DXB shortly I think
Muchits
Muchits 1
EK hasn't announced anything with ATL yet. And it has more to do with the capacity dumping that the Big 3 subsidized Middle East carriers are doing into the US Market.
RRKen
Who is EK?
andyc852
Emirates Airlines
igotthejet
Antonio Cepeda 1
Emirates Airline* - there, I fixed it for ya.
RRKen
Why not just type Emirates then?
pilot62
Scott Campbell 2
Cause those in know don't - BTW FYI :)
bigkahuna400
bigkahuna400 2
How come know one has said anything about why Delta is struggling because their service is complete garbage compared to the Middle East carriers. This is why they cannot compete. The service is very bad. Old planes compared to brand new ones....I took the flight being removed and would never fly it again if I could get an emirate's/Qatar one.
Muchits
Muchits 1
That is the point!! Emirates, Qatar, and Etihad are losing money on these routes because they have MUCH higher costs that aren't economically sustainable from a P & L perspective. Because they don't care about cutting costs, they provide over-the-top service compared to un-subsidized airlines, private.

To your point about "Delta struggling," you ought to check your facts. Delta just reported their highest 3Q earnings in airline history at $2.1 billion in operating profit.
andyc852
Do we KNOW that they have higher costs or is this an assumption because they have a reputation for high class service in all cabins. Compared to most (non LCC) carriers overseas US airline service is below par (maybe except Hawaiian) Try Air New Zealand, or Finnair both of which operate at good profit levels. The mid east carriers also have a substantial advantage in their geographic location.
Muchits
Muchits 3
Take a close look at their financial statements. I just did a dissertation about these carriers and their financials and am very familiar with them. For example in 2014 Etihad claimed a $213 million operating profit. But it was noted that a study by Capital Trade Incorporated Inc. found over $1 billion in subsidies in 2014 and over $17 billion since 2004 for Etihad. Additionally that $213M operating profit was incorrectly reported since they misrepresented the sale of their frequent flyer program to themselves and accounted for a $6.6B loan without a repayment obligation (against GAAP and IFRS reporting principles). Had they followed IFRS standards (which they should operate under) they would have reported a $511M operating loss. This is much the same for Qatar and Emirates. Moreover, if you take away those subsidies for 2014, Etihad would have incurred a loss in the range of billions.
andyc852
Thanks for this. I am neither an accountant, nor an expert on airline management, but we have many on this forum who are long on rhetoric and short on data. I applaud you for being the reciprocal of that.
joelwiley
joel wiley 2
Thanks. It's been a while since GAAP showed up in the conversation.
pilot62
Scott Campbell 2
Their higher cost might have something to do with, uh maybe A380's !!
andyc852
LCC are Low Cost Carriers for Mr Schmidt below who does not do acronyms or airline codes!
RRKen
The neophyte in me thanks you.
andyc852
Most welcome. HAND!
JoshS
Josh Schwartz 2
You can't compare a plane with a shower and 2 bars to a plane with an average business class product. Sure both planes get customers from point A to point B, but is it really the same experience? Can you really say that a business class ticket on Delta is the same as a business class ticket on Emirates, Etihad or Qatar? Since the answer is inevitably no, are the two really competing in the same market?

A proper analogy would be comparing a Mercedes Benz to a Kia. Sure the two get you from one place to another, but are the two really the same? Do the two compete for the same customer? Do you enjoy the same experience from both products? Since the answer is, again, no, you can easily claim that the two products are distinctly different and compete in different markets.

Also, the Gulf carriers fly to a significant number of destinations that US carriers don't/will not fly to. Although the patriot in me would like to fly a US carrier, if I have to get to Perth, Mauritius, New Delhi, Brisbane, Kuala Lumpur, Manilla Jakarta and a number of other places, taking a US carrier would be a nightmare. To further the car analogy, the it is like competition between Ford and Citroen. Ford is sold in the US and Europe, but Citroen is exclusively European. Ford is obviously going to be much more successful because Ford offering their product in an entire market that Citroen isn't.

Overall, the Gulf carriers and the US carriers are barely competing with each other. The two are running two completely separate markets and to say that one's actions deeply influences another isn't looking at the entire situation.
nicoarreman
Nico Arreman 1
Josh,
Delta has in their very old, but (for me) beautiful Boeing 747, nice Zodiac chairs placed in the business, with every seat direct access to the aisle, Emirates is still in business class seats with three in a row.

So Delta tries or to continue to Emirates, but yes indeed, the planes are not up to date.
A ford with a seat from a benz.
charlesKimane
Kimane charles 1
Exactly. Love your shower comment. I wouldn't mind paying extra just for the experience on such a long flight. As you said two different markets. The G3 will obviously attract people wanting to spend more or people with wealth. And those on a budget shall go for the Kia experience. The patriot in me would love to support our airlines, but I flew on Emirates twice in economy and its amazing. Even when my aunt travels for business she pays the extra to fly on Emirates or Qatar and domestically only uses Jetblue. You have such a fair analysis of the situation that I took the time to acknowledge that. It's about product quality and experience. If they match it or come close, the patriots shall stick to our own. But it's in our nature to go after the best experience
Maxepay
Max Mueller 1
One who has flown Delta's long flights in steerage class torture would welcome just a little more room in the seating area. The regional jet has more leg room (seat pitch) than the B 767-400ER I was on from London to Atlanta. More money solves everything!
esu589
Joseph Sede 1
Just as long as the American taxpayers DONT end up giving these airlines any money.
andyc852
IF anybody is giving these airlines anything it is not the US government. It maybe their own governments, which I believe is the discussion.
esu589
Joseph Sede 1
I am talking about giving U.S. airlines money.
nicoarreman
Nico Arreman 1
I think Emirates, fly with the Airbus A380 to Atlanta very soon.
And thank Delta for suspending the route too Dubai.
andyc852
They will start with a B773 then move to an A388
nicoarreman
Nico Arreman 0
I think also, it is always the strategie.
igotthejet
Antonio Cepeda 1
Las Vegas will be the next US destination. Qatar is starting Atlanta next month or so. Emirates already flies to 10 US destinations, but Atlanta is only a freighter (Emirates SkyCargo) destination.
joelwiley
joel wiley 1
That may be a problem. 1) The runway can handle it, the taxiways could be problematic, 2) There doesn't seem to be the double level jetways to unload, 3) there is a question about Customs being able to handle the crowds in a reasonable timeframe.

http://www.reviewjournal.com/business/aviation/a380-superjumbo-jet-it-s-big-it-s-formidable-it-s-not-coming-las-vegas
igotthejet
Antonio Cepeda 1
In typical EK fashion, they'll deploy the 777 initially or just keep it on that route for good,as a poster below has mentioned. Seattle (twice daily), Washington-Dulles, Boston (twice daily), Chicago, and Orlando are served exclusively by the Boeing. No need to use the A380...yet. Ir at least until the infrastructure is in place and the loads warrant it.
joelwiley
joel wiley 1
I was just looking at it from the A380 perspective. As the post office says 'if it fits its ships'
canuck44
canuck44 1
My bet is .This is related to Delta and the other US carriers pushing their call for regulation of the subsidy issue. United just pulled out of Doha probably with a little push by Qatar and the writing is on the wall for the other carriers doing business there. In the ME they will find the hosts become passive aggressive making it harder and more expensive to do business there. It is the way they operate.
American carriers will have to counter these changes by bypassing the Gulf States with newer and long range aircraft and making alliances with national regional carriers for ongoing service. To an increasing extent this is happening now with non-stop United service to two destinations in India.
avanha
Andre Vanha 1
I can understand that US carriers don't like it since it limits their international revenue opportunities, but is it really that harmful? If the ME3 were flying within the US, their subsidies would distort our domestic market. Since they're only flying to and through the ME, the scope of distortion is limited.
pilot62
Scott Campbell 1
Subsidized by American gas consumers - sorry you did finally mention that UAL flies IAD -DXB
ah6oy
Jim DeTour 1
Cost is typically the reason. Qatar developed a new jet fuel years back much cheaper than US suppliers sell and their cost outbound isn't anywhere near competitions costs. The fuel is lighter, burns cleaner and more thrust. http://www.qatarairways.com/global/en/csr-fuels.page Qatar and Emirates keep expanding their routes going direct SF Houston and DC. I forget the last non stops the two have added but possibly Charleston SC another approved customs port.
spbking
Why does everyone bitch about subsidised M East carriers - Uncle Sam protects its airlines when they are financially bankrupt
pilot62
Scott Campbell 2
Uh yea and were paying basically paying for M East to buy all those airplanes !
Muchits
Muchits 1
And so would UAE if Emirates was in bankruptcy. But over $4 Billion in subsidies each year is in a whole different league from bankruptcy protection. Remember bankruptcy is debt restructuring rather than substantial subsidies. Also if Uncle Sam subsidies and protects US carriers that are bankrupt where are Eastern, Pan Am, ATA, Aloha, etc?
Muchits
Muchits 1
*subsidizes and protects
SWEATINTHSWAMP
SWEATINTHSWAMP 1
I don't know about subsidy but note United still flies IAD-Dubai. Gotta get all those lobbyists and arabs to D.C. to collect $$$$
igotthejet
Antonio Cepeda 1
Good!

Since when was Emirates ever competing with DL on the ATL-DXB route? Never! All these years the US3 have neglected an exponentially growing market - the Indian sub-continent. The demographics on a typical ME3 flight are from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, etc. Where was DL, UA, and AA all these years where they could have easily tapped into this market??? Nowhere! Now you have QR, EK, and EY take full advantage of this fact and its prime location, and all of sudden the US3 cry bloody murder!!!

When did UA or AA fly to DXB?? Never! The UAE government nor US government hadn't necessarily prohibited them - these companies just didn't see it in their interest. All of a sudden someone taps into this cash cow, and the US3 are shouting, "those terrible, passenger-stealing Gulf carriers!" The US carriers should lobby for a better national policy instead of using this overplayed out campaign against the ME3. The fact is the US3 didn't give diddly squat certain markets and now that the ME3 are turning a profit, the American carriers have their panties up in bunch.

Here's an example: I want to fly GIG to NRT as Brazilian or Japanese national. I have the option to fly via UA, or AA through the US of A or EK through Dubai. Flying though the USA, I will be subjected to a painful experience to say the least. Flying through IAH or DFW, I'll have to have the required US visa to just see foot on American soil even though I will not be leaving the sterile areas oe past the airport gates. Then, subjected to an interrogation session by customs agents. No gripe here, I understand this is their job. BUT, as transient passenger who plans to catch a flight to the other side of the world and officially set foot in American soil, why should I have to go through this painful process? Fly through DXB - I get off the jet from GIG walk over to the gate where my flight to NRT is flying out of in just twenty minutes! How is it that this can be done in HKG, DOH, AUH, etc., but in our good ole USofA?!?! We've always been at the forefront of innovation, particularly in the aviation sector.

And don't get me started on the horrible inflight service. I've seen it myself - the rude and boorish flight attendants that make you feel like they're doing you a favor for flying on a US carrier. Oh, please!!!

If you're wondering why I used the Brazilian national as an example is because many generations of Japanese live in Brazil. Emirates' marketing department knew this and took advantage of it. The demographics found on these long sectors from/to Brazil are mostly Japanese.

But leave it to the likes of ALPA and APA who instead of facing the real issues affecting their organization, spread fear amongst its members (pilots) claiming the ME3 are taking their jobs!!! Again, when were these American carriers ever opening routes to the middle east besides UA and DL to DXB via IAD and ATL respectively?

Rant over.
n9341c
n9341c 2
Settle down, Captain Happy!
joelwiley
joel wiley 1
Sounds a bit like the ground based big 3 when the likes of Toyota, Datsun (aka Nissan) and Honda entered the market with cars people wanted.
MattHauke
Matt Hauke 1
You miss the point. The other airlines are able to offer what you call better service because they are subsidized by their governments. That is an unfair advantage in a capitalistic market and why the US need to do something to limit access to the US of these airlines.
pilot62
Scott Campbell 1
Uh - fact check ,... UAL flies daily to DXB from Dulles - love when some people just state
their truth as absolute - Sounded good though :)
pilot62
Scott Campbell 0
BOYCOTT DUBAI PERIOD ! Slave labor continues to build it - and no one gives a Sh --
Time to wake up world
cedarstone
Chris Ellis 0
DL should stop whining. They can't complete on service or have the newer equipment to compete, so they falsely claim the Gulf carries get subsidies. It's the consumer who would loose out.
Muchits
Muchits 2
Did you check their financial statements and reconcile prior to making an arbitrary claim that the subsidy claim is false? I highly suggest you start researching prior to making such claims. Additionally, what does it matter if Delta has a 2 year old aircraft or 10 year old aircraft when the interiors were both re-done less than 2 years ago (why would the customer care if the interiors look identical?)?

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