Well it’s been a good few hours since BMI has announced its latest method of death spiral.
Lets take a closer look to see how this is going to happen – step by step (I’ve excluded the end of Manchester Long Haul for this exercise).
- Wet-Lease to Lufthansa Italia/Lufthansa Mainline – A sign on the beginning when an A319 were shifted away from BMI Mainline duties to help Lufthansa kick off it’s LH Italia service. And then the quick borrowing of anohter A319’s to assist the Berlin route take hold properly deprived the BMI A319 fleet of more rapid deployments.
- The cutback of KPB – This is a classic “What were BMI management on at the time” thinking – risk one aircraft, see if we get any traffic, pull it back if we don’t. Once again – no dedication to the route.
- The cutback of TLV – From an A320 to an A330 to… nothing. Once again, poor leasing costs killed this route before it started. With reports of yields being awful too, this isn’t surprising – if regrettable.
- And CAI too – CAI also was upgraded to A330 service. However, this service has survived and has been switched back to an A321
- The cutbacks of AMS, BRU – Perhaps the first real sign of trouble when these were announced. This is down not only to the recession, but can be mostly be put at BMI’s own doorstep with it’s crazy inventory management – it’s classic way of killing off routes.
- The return of leased aircraft – with A330’s returning to lessor soon, and some A320’s/A321’s, it will be a much younger fleet that is left – however this reduces capacity and possible expansion space
- The Cutbacks of DUB – Or “How really to spite your customers”. Discussed in this very blog, and with revenues management hand playing, it’s spited customers in Ireland, who now consider Aer Lingus as the first method of getting to London now, with a useless service to get to London first thing, and getting back to Dublin last thing.
- The abolition of Short-Haul Business Class – BMI call it cost saving for APD. I call shenanigans, with all the changes coming up
- Spiting Golds, Silver and BluePlus by charging for food on Short-Haul – That’s right BMI – take away the last differentiator between you and BA for your elites. Shows how much you really value your elites, making short-haul users of the Electronic Upgrades practically useless
- The abolition of BluePlus – Set up as a method of making sure people who fly over 3000 miles a year so they don’t pay for food, this goes out of the window too. Shows once again, BMI don’t care about their elites for the price of £5 of food.
- And finally a wet-lease agreement announced today with Austrian Airlines from London to Vienna – Yet another A319 reassigned to other duties, which will retain business class.
Diamond Club members are however voting with their feet already, with elites burning miles, and switching business to other carriers – with BA and Aer Lingus being the direct beneficiaries of the actions of BMI.
Even British Airways is on the full poach, dragging customers from Amsterdam, Tel Aviv and Brussels for a very rare status match.
… and you know what – this Diamond Club member is thinking along the same lines. It could be time to dump BMI …