Brand dilution? The WJ product is one, if not the best in "low cost" world. If nothing else, it will put pressure on SWA to step things up.
Growing another airline? WestJet growth plans have been in place long before the partnership was put in place. None of it was predicated on a hook up w/ Southwest, so need need to believe you're growing another airlines operations...you're not.
What this will do is open up each others networks to more customers/guests with almost no risk or additional cost. Very simple and smart.
What about the growth prospects for SWA when your customers can fly from YYC-YYZ and SWA can collect revenue from the seat? Good luck flying that route...it can't happen!
All this growing others rhetoric is nothing but contract posturing and is very transparent.
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Regarding safety, consider that WN would have to come up with a whole new set of ramp procedures to turn a flight in Canada. 95% of the processes currently used would be considered to be unsafe labour practices in the employee friendly country of Canada. The right to refuse unsafe work would be invoked by the time the first flight had the nose gear chocked.
Also (and this is more of a joke), there would need to be a new WN Canadian uniform as no Canadian would frequent an airline (or any other business for that matter) that styles itself with khaki shorts and white runners as a uniform. White runners don't exist in Canada...for good reason!!
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The mentality of the majority of the comments here is frightening and typical fear mongering.
The fact is that WN would be lucky to survive on their own doing flights into Canada.
Canadians have no history with WN and furthermore have had the luxury of 2 fierce competitors that have competed on price and product. The end result is very affordable air travel with service and amenities that WN could not compete with.
With price being equal, few Canadians would choose WN (with the cattle call) when they can travel on WestJet or Air Canada for the same price and get LiveTV/AVOD, pre seat assignment, etc...
As for north bound US originating traffic, WN would only have the benefit of O/D traffic. Anyone looking to connect in Canada would be still be much better suited traveling on Star Alliance carriers to connect inter-Canada with Air Canada.
All WN would accomplish by competing as a stand alone into Canada would be a reduction of fares that the others would obviously match as they always do. End result would be low loads at reduced yield.
The code share with WestJet is the best possible options. Canadians love WestJet and will drive revenue to WN with none of the downside of operating as a stand alone. The benefit is huge as the only other full option from the US to a network of Canadian cities is a monopoly via the Star Alliance. Now there is a second robust option with a WN/WS code share. This would not exist if WN were to do point to point to a select group of Canadian cities.
Furthermore, Canadians just don't have that connection with WN. For many, they see WN as the same as all the other US legacy airlines that Canadians love to hate. Ask them about WN and the first thing they'll do is groan about the cattle call!
To be honest, I'm sure WS is slightly concerned about how their Guests will adjust to the transfer from a WS flight to a WN flight. Canadians connecting to WN will be appalled that they'll have to stand at the gate for a few hours to get a decent seat with their friend. Where's my TV is what others will gripe!
As a previous posted noted, WS started with a WN business plan and had to evolve to stay successful in the Canadian market place. If they still mirrored the WN service model, they would be dead in the water. instead, they have kept the WN style focus on costs and have evolved their product into a solid product, allowing them to have some of the best operating margins in the airline industry while rating alongside some of the most respected organizations in the world for their product and service.
Check your ego's at the door and recognize the WN/WS deal for what it is...mutually beneficial for all.
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