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Old 06-05-2008, 06:54 AM
 
1,740 posts, read 5,184,554 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firstclassflyer View Post
I doubt it. The current economy doesn't support another hub being created by any airline @ SAT. As we speak,airlines are contracting not expanding. Also, we have 2 major hubs that are only a 45 minute flight away. (IAH and DFW). As a frequent flyer , I am at SAT at least 2-4 times per week and have witnessed the slooooowwww progress. It's really an eyesore. I've had a plethora of friends, relatives, staff and colleagues fly into SAT for various reasons and am growing weary of the "what's up with your airport " comments that I inevitably receive.
Actually there are three hubs in Texas...

Love Field - Southwest Airlines
DFW - American
IAH - Contiental

I really doubt that we will be a hug because as you say - the industry is contracting. Plus - because we are a big tourist destination we really want to attract all major airlines.
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Old 06-05-2008, 07:05 AM
 
Location: SoCal-So Proud!
4,263 posts, read 9,690,898 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by banker View Post
Actually there are three hubs in Texas...

Love Field - Southwest Airlines
DFW - American
IAH - Contiental

I really doubt that we will be a hug because as you say - the industry is contracting. Plus - because we are a big tourist destination we really want to attract all major airlines.

Southwest isn't a legacy carrier and doesn't really operate with the "hub and spoke" type system (it's mostly point to point) that the others use. That's why Love Field shouldn't be considered a hub ( I know that some folks do though). Dallas, for SWA, is better defined as a "focus city" and it's headquarters.

I wouldn't mind being a "HUG" city though.
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Old 06-05-2008, 08:38 AM
 
4,268 posts, read 8,355,101 times
Reputation: 1785
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_dimwit View Post
I understand the desire to be close to the airport, but if there is going to be any real growth (larger terminals, more runways, etc.) I'm just not sure if the land area would support said expansion. (I'm not an expert, and haven't done a whole lot of research--just based on what I see when departing/returning the airport.)

I guess I was spoiled living less than 15 minutes from Dulles...tons of routes at all times of the day, major hub, etc. Then again, I love the fact that I never wait more than 15 minutes in line trying to get through security!

--Dim
In my very uneducated opinion, I think the close proximity of the airport to downtown is important in that this is a tourist city. SA isn't a hub and isn't likely to be, which would be the -I think - the reason for doing this. For a hub airport, it doesn't really matter where it's located, because most of the people are transiting through. For a destination airport, close proximity to one's actual destination (city center for most tourists) makes more sense.

All that said, I don't know how many tourists actually fly into San Antonio. I suspect more drive.
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Old 06-05-2008, 08:54 AM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX
1,512 posts, read 2,607,212 times
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Good point, but I would submit that a lot of tourists arriving by air to DC come through Dulles. It's a good ways out (30-45 minutes with minimal traffic) from DC, but has grown exponentially over the years. Of course, the DC metro is a lot bigger than SA, especially when combined with Baltimore (another major airport).

Either way, I think SA has a nice airport, but it just needs some updating in order to bring it to a more modern feel. Right now, even Jackson, MS has a better-looking terminal (IMO).

--Dim
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Old 06-05-2008, 08:59 AM
 
4,268 posts, read 8,355,101 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_dimwit View Post
Good point, but I would submit that a lot of tourists arriving by air to DC come through Dulles. It's a good ways out (30-45 minutes with minimal traffic) from DC, but has grown exponentially over the years. Of course, the DC metro is a lot bigger than SA, especially when combined with Baltimore (another major airport).

Either way, I think SA has a nice airport, but it just needs some updating in order to bring it to a more modern feel. Right now, even Jackson, MS has a better-looking terminal (IMO).

--Dim
I always choose the one closest to the city in DC

I do know that most of the larger cities have airports that are outlying. I don't happen to like it. It's annoying to have to spend 1+ hours after you arrive travelling to a city. But that's just me.

In general, I'm not one of those arguing in favour of San Antonio trying to become the next Chicago. I like that it's a smallish city, and a smallish airport is one of the things that comes with that.

To be sure, I hate having to do multiple transfers when flying to Europe, but I do like the easy access. I wish Houston was just a wee bit closer with easy transportation. When I lived in CT and IN, both ~2 hours from JFK and ORD, both regions had specific bus service for airport to town (direct or almost direct) which was wonderful!
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Old 06-05-2008, 09:32 AM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX
1,512 posts, read 2,607,212 times
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I understand what you mean, Chaka, when you talk proximity and ease-of-use. As I stated before, I love the fact that I'm only 15 minutes away from the airport and can be at my gate within 10-15 minutes after checking baggage. Like you, I get annoyed with the lack of routes (wish everything didn't go through DFW or HOU), but I can get past that.

--Dim
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Old 06-05-2008, 10:15 AM
 
656 posts, read 1,682,145 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chaka View Post
I always choose the one closest to the city in DC

To be sure, I hate having to do multiple transfers when flying to Europe, but I do like the easy access. I wish Houston was just a wee bit closer with easy transportation. When I lived in CT and IN, both ~2 hours from JFK and ORD, both regions had specific bus service for airport to town (direct or almost direct) which was wonderful!
What is the real difference if you spend two hours on a bus, or spend two hours (arrive early + 1 hour flight) to connect in Houston? Plus you get the bonus of arriving behind security in Houston. And generally the fares are similar as going Direct from a hub city, so you save the money you would have had to spend on the two hour bus ride.

Continental used to fly from Ellington Field(East side of Houston) to Intercontinental. A lot of people who lived there chose to take that very short flight and connect instead of driving across town to go Direct. Budget cuts got that service though, they were charging the same amount as flying from Intercontinental.
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Old 06-05-2008, 10:34 AM
 
4,268 posts, read 8,355,101 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty12 View Post
What is the real difference if you spend two hours on a bus, or spend two hours (arrive early + 1 hour flight) to connect in Houston? Plus you get the bonus of arriving behind security in Houston. And generally the fares are similar as going Direct from a hub city, so you save the money you would have had to spend on the two hour bus ride.

Continental used to fly from Ellington Field(East side of Houston) to Intercontinental. A lot of people who lived there chose to take that very short flight and connect instead of driving across town to go Direct. Budget cuts got that service though, they were charging the same amount as flying from Intercontinental.
Well, when flying from New Haven, CT vs. JFK directly, I had a lot more options flying out of JFK. Many of the non-European carriers flew out of JFK but had no partners into New Haven's tiny airport.

Same with ORD and South Bend.

SAT has a few more options than those very small airports, but it still has less than Houston. If I were closer to Houston I'd have a much broader choice of airlines to use than CO or AA to fly to Europe, and more direct options.

Every single time you have to change planes, you run the risk of significant delay or not making your connection and screwing up your whole itinerary. That can make a 12 hour trip into a 20 hr trip (this has happened to us more than once!).

I think Houston's too far from SA to really be practical with the type of service I described for those other communities. And SAT is large enough to not really require it. We did one time drive to Houston to fly to Europe as that was the only way to use our UA FF miles (because UA did not have a flight, but their European partner did), and the long drive back really stank! It would have been nice to let someone else do the driving...

Despite all that, I'm ok with the smaller airport in SA. I'll deal with the flight changes. I can't help wishing there were more direct options, but if that meant the airport was an hour outside the city vs. 10-12 minutes away from home, I'd deal with the flight changes.
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Old 06-06-2008, 09:48 AM
 
Location: San Antonio
1,314 posts, read 2,771,295 times
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On cue, today's story in the E-N about the airport expansion:

MySA.com: Metro | State (http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/metro/stories/MYSA.060608.METROCouncil.EN.37bcd38.html - broken link)
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