Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport
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- Other airports serving Houston
- Houston Ellington Airport
Houston William P. Hobby Airport
- 3658m x 46m
3048m x 46m
3048m x 46m
2866m x 46m
2743m x 46m
- Airlines currently operating to this airport with scheduled services
Air New Zealand
All Nippon Airways
Cargolux Airlines International
Delta Air Lines
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
- Airlines currently operating to this airport via codeshare
- Aer Lingus
Air Tahiti Nui
China Southern Airlines
LOT Polish Airlines
South African Airways
Virgin Atlantic Airways
George Bush International Airport is the principle international gateway to Houston, Texas. The airport hosts domestic and international passenger and cargo services for over 30 airlines and is a major hub for United Airlines.
Location of Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport, United States of America
Ground Handlers and Cargo Handlers servicing Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport
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Fuel & Oil Suppliers servicing Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport
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70 total articles
A likely major focus for the US ULCC Frontier Airlines in 2017 is forging collective bargaining agreements with two of its largest employee groups – pilots and flight attendants. Although the airline’s transition to the ULCC business model is complete, Frontier’s employees weathered several challenges prior to the strategy change, including a bankruptcy during 2008 in which the company was sold. Now employees believe they should share in Frontier’s newfound profitability. When the company reaches new collective bargaining agreements with its pilots and flight attendants Frontier will face the challenge of offsetting the cost inflation generated by those new labour deals with higher revenue generation.
Frontier’s financial turnaround has spurred speculation during 2016 that the airline’s majority owner Indigo Partners was preparing the company for an initial public offering. Nothing has materialised in 2016 but Indigo has expressed interest in investing in other regions, so an IPO could become a more distinct possibility in the not too distant future.
As a privately held company Frontier does not offer forward-looking guidance on capacity growth or network plans, but it appears the airline should post double-digit increases in seat expansion for 2016, and with a steady stream of Airbus deliveries planned for 2017 Frontier’s growth for the year is likely to remain similar to 2016 levels.
For years United Airlines has operated at a competitive disadvantage to its large US network peers. The challenges that United never seemed to overcome were largely self-inflicted, and ranged from widespread employee discontent to consistent revenue shortfalls.
Now United finally appears to be charting a course to level the competitive playing field with its large global US network competitors, to close the long-standing revenue gap it has held with its rivals. The elements of United’s plan to shore up revenues include bolstering connections at its hubs, improved revenue management, and product segmentation that entails a new basic economy fare structure whose restrictions are more stringent than those of its peers.
United’s revenue transformation will not occur overnight, but for the first time since its 2010 merger with Continental the company seems laser-focused on shrinking the competitive challenges that have hindered its performance. It projects billions in improvement – to pre-tax profits by 2020 – as a result of its doubling down on efforts to shore up revenue. Obviously the measure of United’s success lies in its execution and its ability to navigate competitive responses to its revenue-generating strategies.
This is part one of a two part series examining United’s strategies to compete more effectively with its peers on revenue and costs.
Mexico’s largest airline, Aeromexico, plans slightly higher capacity growth in 2016, mostly driven by added frequencies to its long haul markets in Asia and Europe. Its preliminary guidance shows an ASK increase in the low single digits versus 8% growth in 2016. Similarly to 2016, much of Aeromexico’s capacity should be deployed to international markets as the airline sheds three Boeing 777 widebodies and adds five 787-9s to its fleet.
Aeromexico and Delta continue to believe US regulators will approve their immunised cross-border joint venture by YE2016, and are planning to increase their combined daily flights between the two countries by 43% during the next two years. The joint venture is a major pillar of Aeromexico’s transborder strategy going forward as Delta prepares to exert more influence over Aeromexico’s strategy. Some of Aeromexico’s and Delta’s rivals are lobbying for the two airlines to relinquish more slots at Mexico City Juarez, which could become a factor in the government’s final decision.
In the near term Aeromexico’s outlook is relatively stable, despite continuing challenges from the depreciation of Mexico’s currency. The airline’s revenue generation for the 9M ending Sep-2016 was favourable, driven by increases in yields and load factors.
NOTE: This report was prepared before the DoT issued its decision in the Aeromexico-Delta joint venture
The US has been a key market for the Mexican low cost airline Volaris since the company launched transborder service in 2009, reflected in the more than 23 US markets the airline presently serves. For many years Volaris’ transborder push originated in other bases outside Mexico City, given slots constraints at Juarez International airport and previous caps on the number of airlines serving transborder routes from Mexico City.
But in 2017 Volaris is entering more contested markets, taking advantage of a new US-Mexico bilateral that lifts restrictions on the number of airlines operating on some routes between the two countries. It is upping competition with its Mexican rivals Aeromexico and Interjet on services from Mexico City, as well as with the large US global network airlines.
It is not clear if the routes will absorb the additional capacity added by Volaris, but the airline will be the only ULCC operating on those routes, betting it can stimulate traffic with its ultra-low cost model in the already crowded markets.
Frontier Airlines began 2016 making meaningful strides in its on-time performance, besting its closest US ULCC rival Spirit Airlines. But its performance in the busy summer months of Jun-2016 and Jul-2016 slipped, due largely to challenges in ground handling. Now Frontier faces the task of restoring its OTP to consistently higher levels.
Frontier’s network composition is slightly different from those of the two other US ULCCs, Allegiant and Spirit. Its average weekly frequencies fall between those offered by its ULCC counterparts and, in some ways, Frontier’s network changes seem more rapid than those of other ultra-low cost airlines as it works to tailor the ULCC model to its specific strategy.
As a privately held company, Frontier does not discuss its growth prospects as freely as Allegiant and Spirit. But the airline has an ample pipeline of Airbus deliveries that will drive its growth over the medium to long term. During the past year the prospect of an IPO to fund Frontier’s growth has surfaced and quietened down; but at some point in the not-too-distant future the company’s investors will seek rewards for their endeavours.
Airports in the US energy capital of Houston appear to be effectively weathering the downturn in that business sector due, in part, to a diversification scheme undertaken three to four years ago. This scheme was designed to shore up the number of foreign airlines serving the area’s largest airport – Houston Intercontinental. International passenger growth at the airport has helped to alleviate some of the pressure created by fewer domestic connecting passengers from its biggest operator United.
Houston Hobby is also posting solid growth, partially attributable to new transborder services that Southwest started up from a new international terminal at the airport in late 2015. The new service has helped to sustain overall passenger growth of 1.3% in the Houston area for 1H2016. For the first five months of 2016 Hobby recorded 10% passenger growth year-on-year.
With two airports offering commercial service for the metro area Houston has a unique operating profile. Southwest’s dominance at Hobby and Frontier, and Spirit’s operations at Intercontinental, also ensure a solid mix of full service and low cost airlines.