How ironic, I'm a regular on airliners.net also and I believe there was a time when I was discussing train service there and someone asked me if it was better for railroad.net, now here I am talking about airplanes!
deathtopumpkins wrote:One thing this discussion is missing is the fact that Norwegian's flights out of Providence aren't targeted at the Boston market - because Norwegian already flies out of Logan! They're trying to make a go of serving Providence as its own market (plus pulling in people from CT and MA where TF Green is closer/easier/cheaper than alternatives).
deathtopumpkins wrote:Norwegian also flies to Bradley in Connecticut and Stewart in New York, which further supports the idea that they're targeting mid-size cities on their own, rather than just choosing a cheaper alternative to the main airports (otherwise they wouldn't be flying to Logan, JFK, Newark, etc. as well - they're treating them as distinct markets). They're not choosing to serve secondary airports instead of primary, and TF Green is not an attempt at serving Boston without going to Logan (because they already go to Logan).
Okay, I erred slightly in lumping Norwegian with Frontier and Allegiant. Those
carriers are serving T. F. Green as a means of serving Boston without going to Logan. However, that Norwegian is targeting smaller markets is not true. On their website, Providence and Newburgh are listed as "Boston/Providence- T. F. Green" and "New York/Newburgh- Stewart" respectively. The destination guides don't even mention either Providence or Newburgh. And don't be fooled by Hartford: the CSA's population is just shy of 1.5 million, comparable to New Orleans.
So why do they serve both Logan and T. F. Green? From Logan they fly to London Gatwick, Paris, Oslo, and Copenhagen. From T. F. Green they fly to the small airports in Ireland, Scotland, Bergen, and the French Caribbean. Logan is getting the business markets, the people who don't have time to bother with Providence. Aside from Dublin and to a lesser extent Edinburgh and Belfast, T. F. Green is getting the leisure markets. With the exception of the JFK-French Caribbean flights, it's the same thing in New York City with regard to Newark and JFK vs. Stewart.
deathtopumpkins wrote:I also highly doubt the commuter rail factored into Norwegian's decision to serve TF Green at all. That few trains per day on weekdays only is not a legitimate way to reach the airport for 99% of travelers. I'd like to see a source for them even considering Pease vs Green, seeing as Pease has a tiny building for a terminal (with a whopping 1 gate), and over the past couple decades has only seen sporadic commercial airline service at all. Only 4 of the past 10 years have had any service at all, and that's just Allegiant running a few flights to Florida. In contrast, TF Green is a decent-sized full airport, with something like 18 gates serving flights from 15 different carriers. The comparison between them is apples-to-oranges.
Here is a link: https://www.boston.com/news/local.../no ... with-pease
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The facilities there may suck, but if Pease was cheap enough, they could find a way to make do with the one gate. It's only three flights a day and they can do a remote stand.
eubnesby wrote:From suburban Sharon, there are even more problems. I think you failed to account for the essential problem of 'getting to the train station'. Would someone drive to Sharon and leave their car there for days? Having done so, how will they plan their schedule around the horrible service that exists, and will likely continue to exist, even if it were to run on weekends? Why wouldn't they drive straight to airport? Of course, the average person in suburban Sharon, they'll have a car. They'll have enough money to pay for parking at the airport. And more than likely, they'll feel more secure leaving their car at the airport in a secure parking garage than in the open lot at Sharon station. Not to mention, parking at the Sharon station requires an expensive quarterly pass, and there is quite a bit of competition in getting one. Sure, one could factor in getting a taxi/Uber, etc., to the station, or maybe even driving to Route 128, but by the time one has thought about this, one realises that it simply isn't worth going through all this hassle to take this train service.
They couldn't park in Sharon if they wanted to, as there is no overnight parking there. They'd keep their cars at home and if it's too far to walk, they'd get a ride from a friend, family member, taxi, or Uber-like service. And I feel that this happens more often than you think. My parents used to take the Bonanza Bus out of Foxborough despite the ~15-minute backtracking when they would go to Logan. They'd get a ride or drive and get their car picked up. There are some things I don't know, such as how often the bus ran or why they didn't get a ride directly to Logan, but they had the car and money to drive and park at Logan. Similarly, though this may be apples-and-oranges, I also had a co-worker who would get a ride to Mansfield and catch a train to Providence and change to an AMTRAK train. The connection may not always be bad, but she could've driven or got a ride to Providence or Route 128.
eubnesby wrote:The service, as it stands is, might as well be nothing for no-one.
eubnesby wrote:There is no way that Norwegian decided to serve Providence because of the 'rail link', as others have said. That's a pure nonsense.
Well, why did they build the Interlink? Why didn't they just build a station in Apponaug with a shuttle bus to the airport? That's just as convenient to I-95 and it has a much larger population in its walkshed. I don't think that the rail link was the
reason why Norwegian (or Frontier or Allegiant, for that matter) decided to serve Providence, but I'm sure it was a
reason. All we can do here is speculate, but if RIDOT decides that having the one-seat ride to Boston is worthwhile, then they'll pay for the MBTA to go all the way to the airport. And as I said before, if all
trains to Providence were extended to the airport, it would become more or less hourly service and that will get the ridership.