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Airlines and Route Planning

            Flight routes are the gateway to the world, whether long haul, short haul, direct or connecting flight every route in today's benchmark airlines have been carefully analysed and evaluated to determine its cost/benefit ratio to ensure it adds value to the airlines services. When planning to add a new route to its existing network an airline must ensure all factors are taken into account. Ranging from bilateral agreements and legalities through to profit cannibalism and market share each factor needs carefully and accurately calculated in order to forecast the routes cost/benefit ratio.
             Route planning is a process that works alongside the fleet planning and scheduling. When the airline has decided on the routes it wants to service it can then proceed to buy the aircraft that matches the specific requirements of that route, alternatively this can be done in the opposite order having purchased aircraft the airline can then work on finding appropriate routes for that aircrafts capabilities. These points are usually closely linked to the airlines strategic plan and will mirror its intended market needs accordingly. .
             The planning process follows these steps which at any point can be looped back to a previous step to make changes or corrective measures in order to successfully find an appropriate route and its services to ensure maximum effective profitability.
             1. Ensure the airline can legally fly from point A to point B.
             2. Research the economic and demographic trends of the aerodromes expected catchment area.
             3. Market stimulation forecast.
             4. Examine airports capabilities.
             5. Current route competition and market demand.
             6. Propose new service to accommodate the larger market share.
             7. Analyse proposed route.
             8. Evaluate the expected profit margin, and associated cost/ benefits of opening the route.
             When an airline gets presented with an opportunity to open up a new route whether its due to a new bilateral agreement, upgraded airport facilities, withdrawal from a competing airline or an event is being held in that country/city and the airline wishes to capitalise it always begins with evaluating the market demand.

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