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Thread: Southwest & American Airlines

  1. #901
    Skyscraper Member ksig121's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tamtagon View Post
    The Love Field volume limitations would lead most reasonable people to think a potential fight over international flights from the Dallas airport not that big a deal, but if it ever comes to that, I imagine the media & PR spectacle will be times 100 what it is in Houston.

    If the global alliance contemplates switching its hub from the big airport in Houston to the small one, then maybe there's reason for a fight. Intentionally limiting choice is not the way to go.
    I was just referring to flying long haul flights out of Love Field. Not international. (at least not yet...)

    You bring up an interesting point about Houston, though. The alliances depend on that connectivity. That being said, Southwest did not set up that situation. They should not be restrained from attempting to grow their business because they choose not to participate in it.

  2. #902
    Administrator tamtagon's Avatar
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    Dallas and Houston should revel that they have both kinds of commercial airports: the mammoth connecting airport, hub-port of a global alliance with extremely high volume of passers-through, and the smaller intown airport much better suited for O/D travel. Location is the biggest liability for the Bush Airport in Houston, though....

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    ok. IF Southwest starts flying to Mexico and Caribbean destinations, why fly only those international flights out of a Airport your domestic flights do not go to?

    SO in Houston, if Hobby does not open to international traffic but Southwest opens it's operations to international traffic, as a Southwest customer, you can not fly Southwest from say....Amarillo into Hobby and just jump onto another Southwest jet to take them to Cancun, instead, under Puddings idea, they will have to get off the plain, get their baggage and then catch a bus or Taxi to Houston International to catch a flight with the same carrier. What a pain.

    Is it really such a problem to station a few customs officials at Hobby? 2 guys to stamp passports and 2 to do random searches. Jeez. Amarillo International Airport has Customs Officials and i have only ever seen 1 international flight out of there in my entire life!
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    Quote Originally Posted by PuddinHead View Post
    What is in the salt they use on those peanuts?
    Actually, it's the peanuts them self's. My grandparents own a peanut farm and sell to the company that supplies peanuts for Southwest. The required fertilizer used on Southwest Airlines peanut crops main ingredient is fecal mater from off Southwest jets in the bathrooms. Since Southwest has happy customers and staff, the happiness transfers into the waist, and from the waist into the fertilizer, and from the fertilizer into the peanuts, and then back into the Southwest customers, therefor creating happy customers!

    For those who take things seriously, that was 10% true. But what is the truth and what is the lie?
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  5. #905
    Supertall Skyscraper Member electricron's Avatar
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    SW flys to both Austin and San Antonio. Amarillo customers could fly there instead of Love or Hobby if their final destination is in Mexico. Love customers could too. Hobby customers could fly first to Corpus or McAllen before flying to Mexico. I'm pretty sure SW can find alternate arrangements.
    Let the City of Houston make their decision. Dallas has chosen, more to restrict flights at Love than anything else, to not have International flights at Love. Houston can follow Dallas or not, it is their choice.

  6. #906
    High-Rise Member TexasPlus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by electricron View Post
    I'm pretty sure SW can find alternate arrangements.
    Let the City of Houston make their decision.
    Absolutely correct! In the unlikely event Hobby does not become an International Gateway, there are several other Texas/Gulf Coast cities that would Luv the opportunity to become one.
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  7. #907
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    Quote Originally Posted by TexasPlus View Post
    Absolutely correct! In the unlikely event Hobby does not become an International Gateway, there are several other Texas/Gulf Coast cities that would Luv the opportunity to become one.
    Surely these cities see the benefit to being the international gateway for SW. Maybe they don't, maybe they are so worried about offending the big airports.

  8. #908
    High-Rise Member TexasPlus's Avatar
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    In addtion to the current East coast AirTran Interantional cites these new ones are coming soon. Of course they will transition to SWA over the next couple of years

    Denver - Cancun starting April 16, 2012
    San Antonio - Mexico City starting May 24, 2012*
    San Antonio - Cancun starting May 24, 2012
    Austin - Cancun starting May 25, 2012
    Orange County - Cabo San Lucas starting June 3, 2012
    Orange County - Mexico City starting June 3, 2012*
    *Subject to foreign government approval.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tnekster View Post
    Surely these cities see the benefit to being the international gateway for SW. Maybe they don't, maybe they are so worried about offending the big airports.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TexasPlus View Post
    In addtion to the current East coast AirTran Interantional cites these new ones are coming soon. Of course they will transition to SWA over the next couple of years

    Denver - Cancun starting April 16, 2012
    San Antonio - Mexico City starting May 24, 2012*
    San Antonio - Cancun starting May 24, 2012
    Austin - Cancun starting May 25, 2012
    Orange County - Cabo San Lucas starting June 3, 2012
    Orange County - Mexico City starting June 3, 2012*
    *Subject to foreign government approval.
    I don't count in the carribean or north/central america to be truely "international". International to me means europe, africa, asia, south america and austrailia.

  10. #910
    Supertall Skyscraper Member electricron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ancientshoes View Post
    I don't count in the carribean or north/central america to be truely "international". International to me means europe, africa, asia, south america and austrailia.
    You can have your own definition for what International means, meanwhile allow the rest of us to follow Uncle Sam's definition, which by the way is the only definition that counts!

  11. #911
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    Quote Originally Posted by PuddinHead View Post
    Southwest used to operate at IAH but decided to move all flights to Hobby. Now with the desire to operate internationally that decision has come back to bite them. Unfortunately for all airlines they must operate from airports; airports in our country are owned and controlled by local and federal governmental agencies.

    The governing parties have the final say on whether or not there is international air service from Hobby regardless of how much southwest whines about how unfair life is when you have to live with past decisions.



    Can you give us an example of those other airlines? Who besides than southwest has cried hard and fast for separate facilities whether it is love field or FIS at Hobby?



    Really doubtful, Southwest wanted the gate restrictions at Love Field to keep other airlines out. Remember 20 total gates and only 4 are controlled by an airline besides Southwest. They accepted the no international service from Love Field as part of that bargain. Chances are you will see WN at DFW before you will see other airlines offering more than a token amount of service from Love.
    You know the really funny part of this whole Love/Wright discussion,WN could have moved lock stock and barrel to DFW cheaper than what they are spending to renovate Love. And DFW would have parted the waves to get them there too.



    Southwest has painted themselves into the corner with their bags fly free shtick. Granted their planes are full but so are everyone else’s planes and they get the revenue from the checked bags too. Concerning Southwest current situation remember when AA gets out of BK they and the rest of the legacy airlines will have operating costs below Southwest. Southwest will have some hard choices to make in the future and dollars to donuts they will not be that same ole cutesy airline they portray themselves to be now.
    I'll only reply to one part of your reply to me because most of it is just noise.

    When I mentioned other airlines lobbying for legislation and regulation that is favorable to their business, I made no mention of separate facilities. You might garner more credibility if you stop putting words in people's mouth and actually READ what you are responding to.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PuddinHead View Post

    Can you give us an example of those other airlines? Who besides than southwest has cried hard and fast for separate facilities whether it is love field or FIS at Hobby?
    United Airlines leaps to mind. They convinced the Houston Airport System to revise their master plan and add a second, separate, FIS at Bush.

  13. #913
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tucy View Post
    United Airlines leaps to mind. They convinced the Houston Airport System to revise their master plan and add a second, separate, FIS at Bush.
    Oh please....don't confuse pHead with facts.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PuddinHead View Post
    http://blog.chron.com/houstonpolitic...international/

    Lufthansa a “nein” on Hobby going international
    A third party has stepped into the United Airlines vs. Southwest Airlines fracas over whether to allow Southwest to fly abroad from Hobby Airport. Lufthansa sides with United in arguing that making Hobby an international airport would hurt carriers at Bush Intercontinental Airport.

    Houston Airport System director Mario Diaz said in December that the system will spend $30 million to $40 million on runway upgrades at Bush to accommodate Lufthansa’s plan to start flying its A380 — a 526-seat double-deck jet — to Houston this summer.

    But if Houston OKs Hobby as an international airport, Lufthansa states in a letter to Mayor Annise Parker, it could hurt the long-term prospects for the airline’s flagship aircraft at Bush.

    In a Feb. 13 letter that my colleague, Chronicle aviation reporter Kiah Collier, dug up in her recent reporting, Lufthansa board member Katy Kratky wrote:

    …we fear that any dilution of flow traffic through IAH will have a negative impact on our ability to sustain this service over the long term.
    PuddinHead, how does this reflect badly on Southwest? You forgot to add your usual crazy editorial.

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    Skyscraper Member Double Wide's Avatar
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    Southwest's international routs out of Hobby would not effect any of Lufthansa's destinations. I dont think there is a flood of people wanting to fly on Lufthansa from Houston to Mexico City or Houston to Puerto Rico.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Wide View Post
    Southwest's international routs out of Hobby would not effect any of Lufthansa's destinations. I dont think there is a flood of people wanting to fly on Lufthansa from Houston to Mexico City or Houston to Puerto Rico.
    The argument is more if you let Southwest do it, others will too. Which is reasonable, from Lufthansa's point of view.

    What's not quite so reasonable are the threats, mud-slinging, and blackmailing these airlines--on both sides--are using to get their way. "If you don't play by my rules, I'm just doing to take my ball and go home" is, at very least, not a very "sophisticated" rhetorical strategy.

  17. #917
    High-Rise Member TexasPlus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Wide View Post
    Southwest's international routs out of Hobby would not effect any of Lufthansa's destinations. I dont think there is a flood of people wanting to fly on Lufthansa from Houston to Mexico City or Houston to Puerto Rico.
    Puerto Rico is not international from the USA, as it is a US Territory.
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  18. #918
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    Quote Originally Posted by profbarium View Post
    "If you don't play by my rules, I'm just doing to take my ball and go home"
    ??? Not sure what your referring to here, please clarify.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TexasPlus View Post
    ??? Not sure what your referring to here, please clarify.
    Houston Airport System director Mario Diaz said in December that the system will spend $30 million to $40 million on runway upgrades at Bush to accommodate Lufthansa’s plan to start flying its A380 — a 526-seat double-deck jet — to Houston this summer.

    But if Houston OKs Hobby as an international airport, Lufthansa states in a letter to Mayor Annise Parker, it could hurt the long-term prospects for the airline’s flagship aircraft at Bush.
    Lufthana insists that it needs the runway upgrades at Bush; thus, the city cannot spend the money at Hobby (I guess that's the inference) to make it an international airport. Put another way: the city of Houston needs us [Lufthansa et al.] to fly our big planes into Bush, so you'd better give us what we want (or we just might go somewhere else).

    Similarly, Southwest can play Houston and Dallas against each other: whichever of you gives us the international upgrades we want will see a benefit; the other will lose out on the benefits we provide.

    Now, one can reasonably argue that IAH should accomodate the super jumbo Airbuses, and that both Love and Hobby should allow international travel. It seems like a conflict of interest, at best, for Southwest, United, and Lufthansa (i.e. those with the most to gain or lose) to be mounting the fiercest fights over what's best for the cities and taxpayers. But I guess that's how lobbying works. (And, honestly, the results aren't always bad.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by PuddinHead View Post
    It really is a shame that you do not practice what you preach. At the beginning of this discussion I asked a couple of questions that you conveniently ignored. Maybe you could answer them for us now.

    Need versus Want that is issue here. Just because Southwest wants something does that make it a necessity, does that make it needed?

    Are new international service facilities actually needed at HOU?




    Good try but the facts are not quite what you present.

    The original agreement was between the city and CO was never implemented because of the economic downturn. UA did not become part of the deal until after the merger. As part of the plan for CO to renovate and operate terminal B CO relinquished its gates at Terminal D to the city so that the City could renovate the old international terminal to facilitate services for the OTHER international carriers at the airport. IE modernize the facilities for more flights and larger aircraft expected to be operated by Singapore, Lufthansa, Emirates etc. What did CO now UA get out of the deal, they get to pay for the complete renovations at Terminal B and eventually build as part of phase 3 of the plan a FIS facility for terminal B. UA/CO will not be paid back for the money spent on the terminal and must still pay rental fees for the facilities after completion of the project.

    Actually the agreement between UA and CO seems to be more pretty altruistic.
    You went into a of detail that is utterly beside the point; You asked for examples of other airlines who had "cried hard and fast for separate [international] facilities. The simple fact is, one answer to your question is: United . United and the Airport System are building a separate FIS facility at Bush that may draw customs agents away from the primary facility serving Terminals D & E, exactly the thing United is complaining about Southwest proposing at Hobby.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PuddinHead View Post
    http://blog.chron.com/houstonpolitic...international/

    Lufthansa a “nein” on Hobby going international
    A third party has stepped into the United Airlines vs. Southwest Airlines fracas over whether to allow Southwest to fly abroad from Hobby Airport. Lufthansa sides with United in arguing that making Hobby an international airport would hurt carriers at Bush Intercontinental Airport.

    Houston Airport System director Mario Diaz said in December that the system will spend $30 million to $40 million on runway upgrades at Bush to accommodate Lufthansa’s plan to start flying its A380 — a 526-seat double-deck jet — to Houston this summer.

    But if Houston OKs Hobby as an international airport, Lufthansa states in a letter to Mayor Annise Parker, it could hurt the long-term prospects for the airline’s flagship aircraft at Bush.

    In a Feb. 13 letter that my colleague, Chronicle aviation reporter Kiah Collier, dug up in her recent reporting, Lufthansa board member Katy Kratky wrote:

    …we fear that any dilution of flow traffic through IAH will have a negative impact on our ability to sustain this service over the long term.
    Note: Lufthansa is a partner of United in the Star Alliance. Only a "third party" in a very technical sense of the term.

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    Quote Originally Posted by profbarium View Post
    Lufthana insists that it needs the runway upgrades at Bush; thus, the city cannot spend the money at Hobby (I guess that's the inference) to make it an international airport. Put another way: the city of Houston needs us [Lufthansa et al.] to fly our big planes into Bush, so you'd better give us what we want (or we just might go somewhere else).

    Similarly, Southwest can play Houston and Dallas against each other: whichever of you gives us the international upgrades we want will see a benefit; the other will lose out on the benefits we provide.

    Now, one can reasonably argue that IAH should accomodate the super jumbo Airbuses, and that both Love and Hobby should allow international travel. It seems like a conflict of interest, at best, for Southwest, United, and Lufthansa (i.e. those with the most to gain or lose) to be mounting the fiercest fights over what's best for the cities and taxpayers. But I guess that's how lobbying works. (And, honestly, the results aren't always bad.)
    Not saying the airlines are not/will not threatening/threaten to take their flights elsewhere, but you got a few things wrong. (1) There is no money conflict between the widening of runways and taxiways at Bush and the international facilities at Hobby because Southwest has proposed to pay for the facilities Hobby. (2) Southwest cannot play Love Field against Hobby for international flights because international flights are not allowed at Love Field by statute. They can, however, certainly play Austin, San Antonio and others against Hobby.

    The theory behind Lufthansa's complaint is not that Lufthansa will lose paying customers on Houston-Cancun flights, but that if Southwest draws business away from United's Houston-Cancun flights, such that United reduces service, that reduces the number of connecting flights available to feed into Lufthansa's flights to Germany. They may be right. But that is what we call free market capitalism. IMO, the city and airport system have no business picking winners and losers.
    Last edited by Tucy; 01 April 2012 at 06:43 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tucy View Post
    Not saying the airlines are not/will not threatening/threaten to take their flights elsewhere, but you got a few things wrong. (1) There is no money conflict between the widening of runways and taxiways at Bush and the international facilities at Hobby because Southwest has proposed to pay for the facilities Hobby. (2) Southwest cannot play Love Field against Hobby for international flights because international flights are not allowed at Love Field by statute. They can, however, certainly play Austin, San Antonio and others against Hobby.

    The theory behind Lufthansa's complaint is not that Lufthansa will lose paying customers on Houston-Cancun flights, but that if Southwest draws business away from United's Houston-Cancun flights, such that United reduces service, that reduces the number of connecting flights available to feed into Lufthansa's flights to Germany. They may be right. But that is what we call free market capitalism. IMO, the city and airport system have no business picking winners and losers.
    Thanks for clarifying those factual issues. So why is Lufthansa bringing up the issue of money for IAH? If it's not a "best use" of government funds (as they implied/I inferred), that greatly weakens their argument. Maybe if they (i.e. Germany's flag carrier) offered to pay for the runway widenings in exchange for restricted service at Hobby, they'd have a better case.

    And I understand what you're saying about Love generally, that international flights are prohibited by statute. I guess I meant that SWA might use SAT/AUS/HOU as leverage to get the statutory restriction at DAL lifted. (And of course you're correct about playing SAT & AUS against HOU.)

    To your last point, I also tend to agree. Though it also seems reasonable that Southwest should make some kind of concession or consideration in order to get the rules changed in its favor. And yes, paying for the facilities is one good way to do that.

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    Incoherent Rambler grantboston's Avatar
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    ^The FIS (Federal Inspection Services) facilities needed for international gateways are government funded.

  25. #925
    High-Rise Member TexasPlus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grantboston View Post
    ^The FIS (Federal Inspection Services) facilities needed for international gateways are government funded.
    As the government does not produce funds, were do you suppose government gets that money to redistribute?
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    Quote Originally Posted by grantboston View Post
    ^The FIS (Federal Inspection Services) facilities needed for international gateways are government funded.
    Southwest is offering to pay for the construction of the facilities necessary for FIS at Hobby, according to the news stories. The staffing is government funded . . . paid for by user fees collected at the airports.

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    Quote Originally Posted by profbarium View Post
    Thanks for clarifying those factual issues. So why is Lufthansa bringing up the issue of money for IAH? If it's not a "best use" of government funds (as they implied/I inferred), that greatly weakens their argument. Maybe if they (i.e. Germany's flag carrier) offered to pay for the runway widenings in exchange for restricted service at Hobby, they'd have a better case.

    And I understand what you're saying about Love generally, that international flights are prohibited by statute. I guess I meant that SWA might use SAT/AUS/HOU as leverage to get the statutory restriction at DAL lifted. (And of course you're correct about playing SAT & AUS against HOU.)

    To your last point, I also tend to agree. Though it also seems reasonable that Southwest should make some kind of concession or consideration in order to get the rules changed in its favor. And yes, paying for the facilities is one good way to do that.
    Would Southwest offering to pay for the facilities be enough of a concession/consideration?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tucy View Post
    Would Southwest offering to pay for the facilities be enough of a concession/consideration?
    Sure; it could be. I don't have all the facts in front me, so I'd hesitate to make a firm opinion. But that seems reasonable.

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    Quote Originally Posted by profbarium View Post
    Sure; it could be. I don't have all the facts in front me, so I'd hesitate to make a firm opinion. But that seems reasonable.
    That's the plan, according to the news stories.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tucy View Post
    Would Southwest offering to pay for the facilities be enough of a concession/consideration?
    Politically, it appears not. The Houston Airport System Director, as quoted in the Houston Chronicle:

    "Just this week we learned that Customs and Border Protection had developed a staffing model for federal inspection service centers. Preliminary information confirms our intuition that Intercontinental is understaffed, which we have been arguing for a very long time to our congressional delegation."

    As a result, requesting more resources for HOU (even if granted) would make whatever issues at IAH harder to solve.

    Apparently two local Congressmen are skeptical that Houston will be allocated any more resources under this staffing model, seemingly regardless of whether or how they are paid for. In the end, DHS controls where resources are allocated.

    Source: http://blog.chron.com/houstonpolitic...decided-in-dc/

  31. #931
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    Quote Originally Posted by profbarium View Post
    the city of Houston needs us to fly our big planes into Bush,
    Innuendo
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    Quote Originally Posted by grantboston View Post
    Politically, it appears not. The Houston Airport System Director, as quoted in the Houston Chronicle:

    "Just this week we learned that Customs and Border Protection had developed a staffing model for federal inspection service centers. Preliminary information confirms our intuition that Intercontinental is understaffed, which we have been arguing for a very long time to our congressional delegation."

    As a result, requesting more resources for HOU (even if granted) would make whatever issues at IAH harder to solve.

    Apparently two local Congressmen are skeptical that Houston will be allocated any more resources under this staffing model, seemingly regardless of whether or how they are paid for. In the end, DHS controls where resources are allocated.

    Source: http://blog.chron.com/houstonpolitic...decided-in-dc/
    Have you ever seen two congressmen voluntarily proclaim their utter ineffectiveness the way these two just did?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Wide View Post
    Innuendo
    Beg your pardon? Care to clarify? Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PuddinHead View Post
    It is understandable why you want to think the details missed the point since the details of the agreement do not fit well within your argument. Tell us how an amicable agreement between the City of Houston and then Continental airlines that facilitates the renovation of two terminals one domestic and one international that requires Continental airlines to vacate its gates at the international terminal and build at their own expense the 3rd FIS area at the SAME airport in any way resembles the plans of southwest to require separate FIS facilities at another airport not currently an international airport?

    Remember those customs agents that will work at that so called separate FIS area in terminal B are at the same airport and can be transported easily between terminals as needed to work all airline international arrivals at IAH, whereas those agents at Hobby will be at Hobby for one airline.
    United reached an amicable agreement by which they agreed to fund the construction of a new, separate FIS facility, and also requires the Airport System to fund hundreds of millions of dollars worth of taxiway and other infrastructure.

    Southwest has proposed an amicable agreement by which Southwest would fund the construction of a new, separate FIS facility. No word as of yet whether there would be ANY cost to the airport system.

    Anyone without an axe to grind can see the similarity. It's a pretty simple fact...United requested and is scheduled to get a separate FIS facility.

    You've added the staffing issue proviso to the discussion in an apparent attempt to muddy the water about whether any other airline had ever requested a separate FIS facility , and are now telling us that because the United facility is only separated from the Terminal D/E facility by a couple hundred yards, it is not really separate. But unless you've made a discovery you haven't shared with the rest of the world, the FIS agents cannot be in two places at the same time. It does not matter if those two places are separated by 30 yards or 30 miles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PuddinHead View Post
    Logic fails you in this argument. Granted the City of Houston and Continental airlines agreed to a third separated by one terminal FIS area at IAH but the underlying fact is that it is at the SAME AIRPORT! Now understand, this is the same airport that the city had designated as the international airport for the city and had planned for an expansion of international service for the City of Houston. They reached an agreement with the largest carrier at the airport to help with this expansion. The city had no plans or reason to start international service at Hobby.

    Now here comes Southwest who made a business decision to leave IAH and now WN wants to start international flights from Houston but finds itself at Hobby which is not an international airport.


    Here is where your argument falls apart.

    1. Hobby is not an international airport.
    2. Hobby is the airport of choice for southwest airlines.
    3. IAH is the international Airport in Houston.
    4. There are no other airlines soliciting for international flights at Hobby.
    5. No one including Southwest has demonstrated there is a need for the City of Houston to make Hobby an international airport.
    6. Southwest the only airline who is soliciting for separate facilities. They want FIS at Hobby for themselves.
    7. CO/UA share IAH International facilities with Aero Mexico, Air Canada, Air France, British Airways, Emirates, KLM, Lufthansa, Qatar, Singapore, TACA, Viva Aerobus
    First, no matter how you want to try to spin out of it, the simple fact remains that United asked for and is getting a separate FIS facility. That is undeniable. You asked for that information (suggesting to us that no other airline had ever done so). I gave you the information and you don't much care for it. That does not change the facts. As to your description of where my argument falls apart, none of that is the slightest-bit relevant to whether another airline has ever sought or gotten a separate FIS facility.

    But apart from that, it's pretty comical:

    1. Hobby is not an international airport. Actually, it is. There are currently no international commercial flights, but customs and immigrations services are available and performed there, probably on a daily basis. And, it is noteworthy that Hobby's 2003 Master Plan includes provisions for international gates and FIS facilities.

    2. Hobby is the airport of choice for southwest airlines. and Bush is the airport of choice for United. So what?

    3. IAH is the international Airport in Houston. Wrong again. In fact, Bush, Hobby and Ellington are all three international airports.

    4. There are no other airlines soliciting for international flights at Hobby. Again, so what?

    5. No one including Southwest has demonstrated there is a need for the City of Houston to make Hobby an international airport. You may or may not have noticed, but airlines were deregulated in this country about 34 years ago. Nobody is required to demonstrate a "NEED" for air service to any governmental authority or, for that matter, internet forum posters. If Southwest is paying for it, it is really only Southwest that has any interest in the "need".

    6. Southwest the only airline who is soliciting for separate facilities. They want FIS at Hobby for themselves. The more you post, the more similarities you find.

    7. CO/UA share IAH International facilities with Aero Mexico, Air Canada, Air France, British Airways, Emirates, KLM, Lufthansa, Qatar, Singapore, TACA, Viva Aerobus. I doubt that United will be sharing their new separate Terminal B facilities with anyone else. (And it is entirely possible that any eventual agreement with Southwest might require them to allow other airlines to use the Hobby FIS... who knows?

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    Quote Originally Posted by PuddinHead View Post
    Logic fails you in this argument. Granted the City of Houston and Continental airlines agreed to a third separated by one terminal FIS area at IAH but the underlying fact is that it is at the SAME AIRPORT! Now understand, this is the same airport that the city had designated as the international airport for the city and had planned for an expansion of international service for the City of Houston. They reached an agreement with the largest carrier at the airport to help with this expansion. The city had no plans or reason to start international service at Hobby.

    Now here comes Southwest who made a business decision to leave IAH and now WN wants to start international flights from Houston but finds itself at Hobby which is not an international airport.


    Here is where your argument falls apart.

    1. Hobby is not an international airport.
    2. Hobby is the airport of choice for southwest airlines.
    3. IAH is the international Airport in Houston.
    4. There are no other airlines soliciting for international flights at Hobby.
    5. No one including Southwest has demonstrated there is a need for the City of Houston to make Hobby an international airport.
    6. Southwest the only airline who is soliciting for separate facilities. They want FIS at Hobby for themselves.
    7. CO/UA share IAH International facilities with Aero Mexico, Air Canada, Air France, British Airways, Emirates, KLM, Lufthansa, Qatar, Singapore, TACA, Viva Aerobus
    First, no matter how you want to try to spin out of it, the simple fact remains that United asked for and is getting a separate FIS facility. That is undeniable. Just being on the same airport property does not keep them from being separate facilities. (Does DFW Airport not have several separate terminals? Or is that not possible, since Terminals A, B, C, D and E are all at the SAME AIRPORT!?) You asked for that information (suggesting to us that no other airline had ever done so). I gave you the information and you don't much care for it. That does not change the facts. FWIW, the fact that United almost certainly will not be sharing the Terminal B facility with other non-Star Alliance airlines rather amplifies the "separateness" of the new Terminal B FIS. Thanks for accidentally bringing that to our attention.

    As to your description of where my argument falls apart, none of that is the slightest-bit relevant to whether another airline has ever sought or gotten a separate FIS facility.

    But apart from that, it's pretty comical:

    "1. Hobby is not an international airport." Actually, it is. There are currently no international commercial flights, but customs and immigrations services are available and performed there, probably on a daily basis.

    "2. Hobby is the airport of choice for southwest airlines." and Bush is the airport of choice for United. So what?

    "3. IAH is the international Airport in Houston." Wrong again. In fact, Bush, Hobby and Ellington are all three international airports. And, it is noteworthy that Hobby's 2003 Master Plan includes provisions for international gates and FIS facilities.

    "4. There are no other airlines soliciting for international flights at Hobby." Again, so what?

    "5. No one including Southwest has demonstrated there is a need for the City of Houston to make Hobby an international airport." You may or may not have noticed, but airlines were deregulated in this country about 34 years ago. Nobody is required to demonstrate a "NEED" for air service to any governmental authority or, for that matter, internet forum posters. If Southwest is paying for it, it is really only Southwest that has any interest in the "need".

    "6. Southwest the only airline who is soliciting for separate facilities. They want FIS at Hobby for themselves." The more you post, the more similarities you find.

    "7. CO/UA share IAH International facilities with Aero Mexico, Air Canada, Air France, British Airways, Emirates, KLM, Lufthansa, Qatar, Singapore, TACA, Viva Aerobus." I highly doubt that United will be sharing their new separate Terminal B facilities with anyone else. (And it is entirely possible that any eventual agreement with Southwest might require them to allow other airlines to use the Hobby FIS... who knows?

  38. #938
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    I think it's a positive sign of an emerging world city, Houston, that two airports with international service would be possible.

  39. #939
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    I think it's a positive sign of an emerging world city, Houston, that two airports with international service would be possible.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PuddinHead View Post
    Tucy if Hobby was an International airport we would not be having this conversation!
    For the love of God, please stop wasting our time. You clearly don't know what you are talking about. As I said above, Hobby does not currently have international scheduled commercial flights. But that does not mean that it is not an international airport. Hobby offers customs and immigration services. This is an incontrovertible fact.

    I suspect that what you meant to say (but clearly did not say) was that Hobby does not currently have international scheduled commercial service, a fact I have already stated. But given that fact, so what? Are you proposing that no additional airports ever be allowed to provide international scheduled commercial service?

  41. #941
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    International Airport?

    FAA INFORMATION EFFECTIVE 05 APRIL 2012
    Location
    FAA Identifier: HOU
    Lat/Long: 29-38-43.5070N / 095-16-44.0000W
    29-38.725117N / 095-16.733333W
    29.6454186 / -95.2788889
    (estimated)
    Elevation: 46 ft. / 14.0 m (surveyed)
    Variation: 05E (2000)
    From city: 8 miles SE of HOUSTON, TX
    Time zone: UTC -5 (UTC -6 during Standard Time)
    Zip code: 77061

    Airport Operations
    Airport use: Open to the public
    Activation date: 01/1939
    Sectional chart: HOUSTON
    Control tower: yes
    ARTCC: HOUSTON CENTER
    FSS: MONTGOMERY COUNTY FLIGHT SERVICE STATION
    NOTAMs facility: HOU (NOTAM-D service available)
    Attendance: CONTINUOUS
    Wind indicator: yes
    Segmented circle: no
    Lights: SS-SR
    Beacon: white-green (lighted land airport)
    Operates sunset to sunrise.
    Fire and rescue: ARFF index C
    International operations: customs landing rights airport

    http://www.airnav.com/airport/KHOU
    FAA INFORMATION EFFECTIVE 05 APRIL 2012
    Location

    FAA Identifier: IAH
    Lat/Long: 29-59-03.9610N / 095-20-29.1920W
    29-59.066017N / 095-20.486533W
    29.9844336 / -95.3414422
    (estimated)
    Elevation: 97 ft. / 29.6 m (surveyed)
    Variation: 05E (2000)
    From city: 15 miles N of HOUSTON, TX
    Time zone: UTC -5 (UTC -6 during Standard Time)
    Zip code: 77396

    Airport Operations
    Airport use: Open to the public
    Activation date: 01/1963
    Sectional chart: HOUSTON
    Control tower: yes
    ARTCC: HOUSTON CENTER
    FSS: MONTGOMERY COUNTY FLIGHT SERVICE STATION
    NOTAMs facility: IAH (NOTAM-D service available)
    Attendance: CONTINUOUS
    Wind indicator: lighted
    Segmented circle: no
    Lights: SS-SR
    Beacon: white-green (lighted land airport)
    Operates sunset to sunrise.
    Fire and rescue: ARFF index E
    International operations: customs landing rights airport

    http://www.airnav.com/airport/KIAH
    It would seem some are confused about what airports are Quote "International".
    The proper terminology is "International operations: customs landing rights airport".

    The quotes above from www.airnav.com should be helpful.
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  42. #942
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    Quote Originally Posted by TexasPlus View Post
    It would seem some are confused about what airports are Quote "International".
    The proper terminology is "International operations: customs landing rights airport".

    The quotes above from www.airnav.com should be helpful.
    Thanks for posting that TexasPlus. Yes, some are confused. Interesting that the site lists Bush Intercontinental with the exact same terminology. Nevertheless, in the industry parlance, it is entirely proper to refer to both as "international airports". It would be a little ungainly to constantly refer to an airport as having "International operations: customs landing rights airport", rather than simply referring to them as an "international airport" as is the common practice.
    Last edited by Tucy; 08 April 2012 at 08:31 PM.

  43. #943
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tucy View Post
    Thanks for posting that TexasPlus. Yes, some are confused. Interesting that the site lists Bush Intercontinental with the exact same terminology. Nevertheless, in the industry parlance, it is entirely proper to refer to both as "international airports". It would be a little ungainly to constantly refer to an airport as having "International operations: customs landing rights airport", rather than simply referring to them as an "international airport" as is the common practice.
    Aviation like most industries uses slang and acronyms extensively, however slang is often misused or tends to lump different things as if they were the same.
    Case in point, seems there is more than one type of "International Airport" as is seen with DFW.

    FAA INFORMATION EFFECTIVE 05 APRIL 2012
    Location
    FAA Identifier: DFW
    Lat/Long: 32-53-48.5810N / 097-02-16.7850W
    32-53.809683N / 097-02.279750W
    32.8968281 / -97.0379958
    (estimated)
    Elevation: 607 ft. / 185.0 m (surveyed)
    Variation: 06E (2000)
    From city: 12 miles NW of DALLAS-FORT WORTH, TX
    Time zone: UTC -5 (UTC -6 during Standard Time)
    Zip code: 75261
    Airport Operations
    Airport use: Open to the public
    Activation date: 01/1974
    Sectional chart: DALLAS-FT WORTH
    Control tower: yes
    ARTCC: FORT WORTH CENTER
    FSS: FORT WORTH FLIGHT SERVICE STATION [817-541-3474]
    NOTAMs facility: DFW (NOTAM-D service available)
    Attendance: CONTINUOUS
    Wind indicator: lighted
    Segmented circle: no
    Lights: SS-SR
    Beacon: white-green (lighted land airport)
    Operates sunset to sunrise.
    Landing fee: yes
    Fire and rescue: ARFF index E
    International operations: international airport of entry
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  44. #944
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    New International Flights Approved

    Southwest Airlines Co. : AirTran Airways Awarded Route Approval for Flights Between Chicago Midway and Cancun
    04/05/2012 | 10:10pm

    Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) today announced that its wholly owned subsidiary AirTran Airways received route authority from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to operate new international flights between Chicago Midway International Airport and Cancun International Airport. AirTran will offer one daily nonstop flight between the two cities beginning on June 3, 2012, subject to Mexican government approval. The flights can be booked today at www.airtran.com.

    "We are excited to offer all AirTran Airways Customers this new opportunity to travel to Mexico," said Bob Jordan, Southwest Airlines' Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer and AirTran Airways President. "The additional international service to Cancun is a great example of how Customers are already realizing the benefits of Southwest's acquisition of AirTran."

    With a current average of 246 daily departures at Chicago Midway, the combined AirTran/Southwest is the second largest carrier in the Chicago region. AirTran and Southwest currently operate nonstop service between Chicago Midway and a total of 58 cities.

    Southwest and AirTran express their sincere gratitude to the DOT for awarding this authority to AirTran, and to the City of Chicago for its enthusiastic support of the new service.

    ABOUT SOUTHWEST
    Southwest Airlines continues to differentiate itself from other low-fare carriers - offering a reliable product with exemplary Customer Service. Southwest Airlines is the nation's largest carrier in terms of originating domestic passengers boarded and has acquired AirTran Airways, now a wholly owned subsidiary of Southwest Airlines Co. Southwest serves 73 cities in 38 states and remains one of the most honored airlines in the world known for its commitment to the triple bottom line of Performance, People, and Planet. To read more about how Southwest is doing its part to be a good citizen, visit southwest.com/cares to read the Southwest Airlines One Report™. Based in Dallas, Southwest currently operates more than 3,200 flights a day and has more than 37,000 Employees.

    ABOUT AIRTRAN
    Southwest's acquisition of AirTran, which closed on May 2, 2011, significantly expanded Southwest's low-fare service to more Customers in more domestic markets, creating hundreds of additional low-fare itineraries for the traveling public. AirTran Airways, a wholly owned subsidiary of Southwest Airlines Co., has been ranked the top airline in the Airline Quality Rating study three times in the past five years.

    http://www.4-traders.com/SOUTHWEST-A...ay-a-14260751/
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  45. #945
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    Let international competition take flight at Hobby

    By Loren Steffy Updated 11:32 p.m., Sunday, April 8, 2012

    More than three decades after competition came to the airline industry, some of the biggest carriers still struggle to grasp the concept.

    United Airlines, for example, wants the city of Houston to block Dallas-based Southwest Airlines' plans to begin flying internationally from Houston in 2015.

    The move would require adding customs facilities at Hobby Airport, a $100 million project for which Southwest would bear the cost.

    "It's our business risk, and it brings competition," Southwest Chief Executive Gary Kelly told the Chronicle's editorial board in one of two meetings between officials for both carriers and this newspaper last week. "We're basically applying for a building permit."

    Of course, it's much more than that. As a result of Southwest's request, Houston has been thrust to the forefront of the next big airline showdown over market share.

    Southwest, having frustrated the so-called legacy carriers in the most lucrative domestic markets, now has its sights on international routes, the only remaining cash cow for carriers like United.

    United is responding the way the legacy airlines - those rooted in the business decades before deregulation - typically do: by clinging to the past.

    Former Continental Chairman and Chief Executive Gordon Bethune argued that Bush Intercontinental Airport's very name implies international travel. The plan when it was built, he said, was that it would be Houston's hub for international flights.

    The airport began operations in 1969, almost a decade before deregulation changed the industry. Whatever may have been planned, the purpose of deregulation was to turn that function over to the market.

    It's a concept that the legacy carriers have struggled with ever since. In more than an hour of discussion, United's team questioned Southwest's growth assumptions in Houston, argued that the local traffic here doesn't justify the air service we already have and talked about the intricacies of its hub-and-spoke system.

    Southwest on the hook

    Southwest's economic numbers may indeed be the stuff of economic development puffery. Projections of jobs and passenger traffic rarely pan out as companies predict.

    But if it's wrong, Southwest will pay for its mistake. It isn't the responsibility of the city or local passengers to make United's hub structure viable.

    United argues that if Southwest succeeds, Houston will have too many flights concentrated on too few routes, forcing United and its global partners to pull down nonstop flights to faraway destinations.

    "We firmly believe that we will have to shrink the airport," said Greg Hart, United's senior vice president for network operations.

    But more carriers flying more flights means the routes most people want to fly will be better served and priced more competitively. Those that don't attract many passengers will either become more expensive or be scrapped, at least as nonstops.

    In most industries, that's called market efficiency. In Airlineland, it prompts a cry for help, a plea to local governments to protect the country's biggest airline from market forces, even if it means passengers must pay higher fares on the most heavily traveled routes.

    The story in Dallas

    The last time one city tried to develop two airports, it was in Dallas, and Southwest was at the center of that battle, too. Then the battle was over domestic flights, and at the request of the big airlines, the federal government intervened to limit Southwest's flights out of Love Field. The larger carriers hoped to strangle the upstart in its crib.

    Instead, Southwest flourished. It took the fight to its bigger rivals around the country. Those that are still flying have all, at some point, filed bankruptcy at least once since then.

    Continental, and now United, built Houston's big airport into a fortress hub, one in which it controls most of the traffic to key markets such as Latin America, and as a result it can raise fares accordingly.

    In its response to Southwest's latest challenge, United demonstrates the legacy of legacy carriers by trotting out the same tired arguments used for 35 years to cling to the vestiges of a monopolistic past.

    The city should grant Southwest its "building permit" and let the market - in this case, passengers - decide the winner.

    Loren Steffy

    http://www.chron.com/business/steffy...ht-3465456.php
    I wonder if next we see the same type of PR campaign, led by the same type of ethically challenged liars that were the opposition voice here a few years back?
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  46. #946
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    Hobby expansion adds 10,000 jobs

    Chris Moran Source: Houston Chronicle April 04--

    Opening Hobby Airport to commercial international flights will create 10,000 jobs, bring 1.6 million more air travelers through Houston annually and inject an additional $1.6 billion a year into the local economy, according to a Southwest Airlines executive who has seen city-commissioned studies on the matter.

    "We're asking for an opportunity to invest $100 million in a new building in your city to provide more passengers, 1.6 million a year, a huge economic gain for the city," Ron Ricks, executive vice president and chief legal and regulatory officer for Southwest Airlines, told the Houston Chronicle editorial board Tuesday.

    City Council is scheduled next month to consider granting Southwest permission to build a customs facility at Hobby so the low-cost carrier can fly to Cancun, Mexico, the Caribbean and other Latin American destinations as far away as Caracas, Venezuela.

    United Airlines, which flies out of Bush Intercontinental Airport, opposes the plan, arguing that it could siphon off international travelers, reducing the mass of connecting traffic on which Bush-based carriers depend to sustain and expand routes from Houston. United also argues that a second international airport will divert Customs officers, creating longer wait times at Bush.

    "Southwest is trying to justify the city abandoning the single-international-airport policy that made IAH one of the world's premier gateways. The purported economic benefits are taken directly from the city's draft economic impact study, which we have advised the city is fundamentally flawed," said United spokeswoman Mary Clark in a statement. "Our own conclusions based on realistic assumptions and data show that dividing the city's international air service market will cause dramatic, measurable harm to IAH and Houston's economy."

    Customs delays

    Houston Airport System Director Mario Diaz is expected to recommend whether Hobby should go global in a report to Mayor Annise Parker on Monday. The recommendation and the city-commissioned studies on the economic impact of the expansion will be made public that same day, the mayor announced in a memo on Tuesday.

    Southwest CEO Gary Kelly said repeatedly at the editorial board meeting that Southwest is not asking for any city investment in the terminal expansion and Customs facility addition to Hobby. The $100 million cost of the project is to be covered by debt backed by Southwest and paid off through ticket surcharges.

    Clark said Customs waits at IAH are among the worst in the nation. "If Houston can secure additional agents, they should be deployed to address the chronic understaffing IAH experiences every day," Clark said.

    But Ricks asked, "Is Houston going to let 20 Customs agents stand in the way of a $1.6 billion-a-year economic impact? If we can't solve finding 20 Customs agents in this economy, then Houston, we do have a problem." Ricks said staffing is covered by a $17.50-per-international passenger fee.

    Reduced fares

    Kelly said he believes Southwest's entry into the Houston market will drive down prices and increase passengers at both airports.

    "If you make the air fares affordable, the people will fly -- a gigantic increase. We're arguing to you the pie is going to increase," Kelly said.

    Kelly stopped short of saying how much fares would come down. The volatility of fuel prices makes it difficult to forecast what Southwest's fares would be, he said, but added Southwest has enjoyed 39 straight years of profitability in part through offering cheaper fares than its competitors.

    "We're talking about bringing you more flights, more competition, low fares. It'll create more jobs, over 10,000 jobs is what is predicted," Kelly said. "What you'll see will be a significant reduction in fares" if Southwest flies those routes from Houston, Kelly said.
    I wonder what the two "United backing" politicians have to say about the Houston commissioned studies on job creation and economic impact to the area? Or will they just ignore it?
    "Liberalism: Moochers Electing Looters to Steal from Producers."

  47. #947
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    Hobby poll

    Should Houston allow Southwest Airlines international flights from Hobby Airport?

    See Poll At:
    http://blog.chron.com/lorensteffy/
    or
    http://blog.chron.com/lorensteffy/20...-from-houston/
    Last edited by TexasPlus; 09 April 2012 at 01:35 PM.
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  48. #948
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    Quote Originally Posted by PuddinHead View Post
    Yes there is considerable confusion concerning airport designations. Since this conversation deals with Customs, Border Patrol operations the proper agency to classify airports as international would be the Department of Homeland Security not the FAA.
    Nice try. But wherever you want to check... the undeniable fact is that US government has officers and operations at Hobby Airport performing customs and immigration services, making it an international airport.

    The following is from the website of the United States Citizenship & Immigration Services:

    "(b) Ports-of-Entry for aliens arriving by aircraft . In addition to the following international airports which are hereby designated as Ports-of-Entry for aliens arriving by aircraft, other places where permission for certain aircraft to land officially has been given and places where emergency or forced landings are made under part 239 of this chapter shall be regarded as designated for the entry of aliens arriving by such aircraft: (Re-designated as paragraph (b), previously paragraph (c)(3) effective 7/6/09; 74 FR 26933 )

    * * *

    District No. 38--Houston, Texas

    Galveston, TX, Galveston Airport
    Houston, TX, Ellington Field
    Houston, TX, Hobby Airport
    Houston, TX, Houston Intercontinental Airport "

  49. #949
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    Quote Originally Posted by TexasPlus View Post
    Should Houston allow Southwest Airlines international flights from Hobby Airport?

    See Poll At:
    http://blog.chron.com/lorensteffy/
    or
    http://blog.chron.com/lorensteffy/20...-from-houston/
    It's starting to look like United might be fighting a losing battle, and making themselves even less highly-regarded. There was a poll on the Business Journal website with very similar results.

  50. #950
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    Precise semantics are wonderful. *sigh*

    So, the "discussion" is really whether or not the technically already-an-international-airport Houston Hobby is given approval from whatever local, state and federal agencies & entities to allow Southwest Airlines to build and operate from a new $100 million International terminal.

    I certainly understand all the existing international passenger service providers at Bush Airport doing what they can to protect the monopoly, but I do not agree with it at all.

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