If you're booked through ORD after 11/1 ...

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Aug 18th, 2004, 12:37 PM
  #1
cfc
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If you're booked through ORD after 11/1 ...

...just an alert to anyone who is already ticketed through O'Hare after Nov. 1. AA and UA (and probably others to come) have announced plans to cut back traffic in and out of ORD, and you can already see the difference on aa.com, thought not yet on United's website.

Check your reservations frequently to see if you've been switched to another flight.

(duplcate post on USA board, just to cover the bases, all 2 of them).
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Aug 18th, 2004, 03:33 PM
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I appreciate this information!! I fly ORD all the time on UA. Thank goodness I just retired and will no longer HAVE to fly AFTER working all day.

Flight cutbacks surprise me though, as nearly every flight I've been on in the last couple of years has been packed. What will they do with all those passengers clamoring to get flights out of ORD???

Anyway, I appreciate your post. Thanks.
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Aug 18th, 2004, 05:48 PM
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cfc
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I'm guessing some will be rerouted through Denver (UA) or Dallas (AA) or . . .

Just as glad to "debulk" traffic at ORD but, like you, Simpson, I've noted that planes are all overbooked and many cities underserved. What will be next wrinkle?
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Aug 19th, 2004, 09:11 AM
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This has nothing to do with passenger loads, it has a lot to do with O'Hare congestion. FAA was threating to make the airlines take mandatory cutbacks, so UA and AA have agreed to look at their schedules and take out the flights they think are the least disturbing to their hub operations. This agreement is good from NOV1. till April next year.

Here is the story from http://www.dot.gov/affairs/dot13804.htm

U.S. Department of Transportation and Airlines Agree on Plan to Cut O?Hare Delays by 20 Percent before Thanksgiving

CHICAGO, IL ? Time lost by travelers on flight delays at Chicago?s O?Hare International Airport will be cut by 20 percent before the end of the year under an agreement reached between negotiators for the U.S. Department of Transportation?s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and airlines, Transportation Secretary Norman Y. Mineta announced today.

Domestic airlines serving O?Hare have agreed to a voluntary limit of 88 scheduled arrivals per hour between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. The new limit on scheduled arrivals during peak hours, effective November 1, brings schedules more in line with O?Hare?s current capacity and is expected to cut the amount of time lost due to delays by 20 percent, according to computer modeling developed from six months of actual O?Hare delay information.

The agreement, which is the result of talks directed by Secretary Mineta and chaired by FAA Administrator Marion C. Blakey, also is expected to cut delay times by imposing a limit on new flights that airlines were planning to add in November.

?We?ve worked hard to balance the need to provide vibrant air service and grow the economy with the need to clear the skies over O?Hare,? Mineta said. ?The process worked, yielding substantial reductions that will produce results for the traveling public,? Mineta added.


?We were able to reach a cooperative, voluntary agreement with the carriers,? Blakey said. ?Both groups want the same thing: efficient transportation for the flying public,? she said.


United and American Airlines, which operate 86 percent of flights at O?Hare, have offered the largest reductions. United will reduce 20 arrivals while American will cancel 17 incoming flights scheduled between noon and 8 p.m. Some of these flights may operate during less congested periods of the day. Other airlines with fewer operations have agreed to reduce or change schedules to cut delays.

?We need to steer a course that will keep passengers and the economy moving without stunting the growth of competitive service out of O?Hare,? Mineta said.

The agreement, signed by Blakey today, takes effect November 1, 2004 and expires April 30, 2005. In addition to the schedule reductions, airlines must contact the FAA for approval prior to rescheduling flights to ensure potential scheduling moves do not have a detrimental effect on airport efficiency.

To preserve airport access and competition, the agreement also allows new entrants and those carriers already serving O?Hare with eight or fewer scheduled arrivals to add no more than one arrival from noon to 9 p.m. All additions would be subject to prior approval by the FAA and handled on a first-come, first-served basis. If one scheduled arrival is added, one non-scheduled arrival will be removed to maintain the agreed upon overall hourly arrival rate at the airport.



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Aug 19th, 2004, 03:17 PM
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cfc
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No one said it had to do w/passenger load, just that it is surprising how all flights are now overbooked and therefore problematic where/when all those passengers who would have flown on the canceled flights will now go.

I posted what I did because I noticed that AA had altered its schedule before the FAA announcement was even on the wires.
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Aug 19th, 2004, 04:41 PM
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You guys notice something ironic? The airports with too many flights and most delays are the ones without a dominating carrier. Aren't all the press and politicians are all against fortress hubs and want more competition? Anybody realize that competition also causes the most delays?

O'Hare is a good example. LaGuardia another one.

It's pretty simple. Airlines won't choke themselves to death at their own fortress hubs. They just swtich to bigger planes. But at competitive airports like ORD and LGA, every airline wants to provide the most flights.

It's not surprising that the FAA has to step in. UA/AA doesn't care if they have to cut flights, as long as both have to do it the same time. They just won't do it unilaterally, as that would give up market share at that important market. Both airlines can easily cut some of their least-full flights, and switch to bigger planes on other routes. And AA can even move some of its mid-continent connection back to STL.

As long as they don't have to lose out to UA. And vice versa.
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Aug 20th, 2004, 09:03 AM
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ORD does not have a dominating carrier it has 2. Ohare is the worlds only DUAL hub airport, and it is also the current worlds busiest (in terms of arrivals and depts - which will change because of he flight cuts probably will go to altlanta or LHR )

AA and UAL squash other airlines at Ohare more than each other (Contental,Delta,etc) The reason the airport has such bad delays has more to do with the way these airlines do busines and not the compitetion. ORD has a tons of domistic flights to cities all over the US. The airlines figure when ever anyone wants to go somewhere they can just send them to ohare and catch the flight to where they want to go. instead of having more direct routes. Small cities especially get routed though ohare.

There are Threereal solutions to this problem: Stop using the HUB system (that will happen when planes use solid waste for fuel)

Add other hub to the midwest (good look getting that one together)

Expand and re-align ohare.(which is currenly stuck in FAA review)

NExt time you are stuck at ohare you should think about wrting you congressman to get ohare fixed, the only way that is going to happen quickly is with national pressure


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Aug 20th, 2004, 09:41 AM
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Just some silly triva history in case anyone cares:

Ohare Airport is named after Butch Ohare - A figher pilot in the pacific during WWII - also son of Al Compones Lawyer
here is a link to his story
http://www.ipsn.org/ohare.html

When Ohare airport became a commerical airline center it was immediatly the worlds busiest - Guess was airport was the busiest before it ??

Midway Chicago!!! if you have ever been there you can laugh because it is actually a quite a small airport. The largest aiplane it can take is a 757

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Aug 20th, 2004, 10:09 AM
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The hub system is going to stay for the most part because it's very efficient. How else are people going to get from Madison, WI to Savannah, GA, for example?

And you just can't tell an airline to add another midwest hub. AA did that by buying TWA and gaining STL, but it makes little economical sense to shift flights from ORD to STL because AA would lose its competitiveness at ORD. I am no fan of government controlling private enterprises, but a slot system like the one they use at LHR is the best solution. If an airline is doing well and want more slots, then let them PAY for it.
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Aug 21st, 2004, 05:37 AM
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The hub system is drastically inefficient if you only have one or two major hubs -- which is what we're seeing with the overload on O'Hare. It's also inefficient if you have more than one or two lines serving ALL the cities with roughly equal flow among cities, as with packages and FedEx/UPS. Even FedEx/UPS have multiple smaller hubs and are seeking more.

But frankly, another problem is something neither government nor the airlines can do anything about: the midsection of our country is prone to extremes in weather. O'Hare gets both the blizzards in the winter and the severe thunderstorms (or worse) in the summer, which might well make it the least likely site for a hub if it hadn't been for the population density and the availability of land for a huge airport.
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Aug 21st, 2004, 05:43 AM
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It is well documented that our air traffic control system needs a massive overhaul. "Free flights", using GPS on each plane, have been proposed for many years and is being used in Alaska, but down here, everything is still being mainly controlled manually by human ATCs giving out spoken instructions and planes fly fixed routes. It's so antiquidated that's it's not even funny.

That's what's holding back aircraft traffic the most, and resulting in a small regional thunderstorm disrupting traffic in the whole country. We need leadership in the FAA to get the new system implemented.
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Aug 21st, 2004, 07:24 AM
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soccr,

Ohare airport have few weather delays compared to the traffic problems. Planes land in all kind of conditions here in chicago. Weather has nothing to do with the problem at ohare. I have been flying from ohare for 20 years and only once was I canceled for weather, and I can only remeber one delay.
All the problems are traffic releated. Chicago has extreme weather but it does not affect airplanes that often(but if it does the country gets *#*$ed).

The real problem is ohare's WWII cross runway configuration and FAA's antiquated traffic control (see above)
as well as ohare's lack of capacity
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Aug 21st, 2004, 07:53 AM
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I don't disagree at all that antiquated FAA resources and the cross-runway configuration are a big problem. No argument at all about that one, although the FAA problems pervade the whole system.

But you have to have been extraordinarily lucky, dgruzew, and we should all schedule our flights when you fly.

I lived in Chicago for almost a decade, with close friends working at UA, and the weather was a constant problem -- delays were quite frequent. I remember one summer when I was delayed by weather departing 3 times out of 3 and arriving 2 times out of three -- including circling between Chicago and Janesville WI for 90 minutes dodging tornadoes and thunderheads. Then there was the great flood. Then there were those blizzards. I'm sure if you took a poll here, you would find very few who have dealt with ORD who haven't had similar experiences. And remember that flights between anywhere in the midsection of the US are susceptible to the same weather, compounding the problems at the ORD hub.

Anyway, the original intent of cfc's post was to alert people with existing reservations, and that was a worthy impulse. Thanks.
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Aug 21st, 2004, 01:06 PM
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Thanks cfc for the heads up. We've got a return flight through ORD in November, so we'll have to keep an eye on it. So far, no change.

I'd love it if they moved some hub activity back to STL. It's where we start from and I miss the volume of directs to the coasts and the non-stop London routes. I wouldn't miss connecting in ORD at all.

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