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@Scott - for about $5k or less, you can get access to the airline reporting corporation (ARC) database which will show every single ticket booked in/out of HDN. Obviously round trips originating here are mostly locals. That would show how many of the seats are NOT tourists but rather locals going elsewhere. And even for the round trips originating elsewhere, this data could give insight into repeat trips that represent workers commuting to Steamboat, like the energy sector.
It would all be cheap and easy to obtain, but instead we rely on some lightweight polling done by the Chambet at the airport on one or two days to tell us how many of the passengers are tourists.
Whenever the real, data driven answer is technically this easy to produce yet politically impossible to obtain, it concerns me. I would pay for it myself except they will only release the data to airport authorities, who in the past have been happy to operate under potentially false assumptions (ignorance = bliss). Hopefully the new manager will be different.
Colby - you and your staff run a great store. I and others intentionally shop there because of it. I hope you and other great retailers will continue to thrive in our community.
Other stores don't even recognize that I'm there, or they do but are completely rude to me. It causes me to quickly pull out my smart phone and load up amazon.com, not because I don't want to shop local (I'm standing in the local store), but because I want to shop, but the local store doesn't want or know how to sell. This is important for local retailers to consider. Hire poor employees and you'll have poor sales. Stock the wrong products and you'll have poor sales. Provide poor service and you'll have poor sales. Yet many do one or all of these, yet try to guilt us into "shopping local."
Case in point, about half of the retailers in our town have taken the Chamber's customer service training. The other half refused. Guess which half I shop at? Guess which half probably won't be around long?
"After the 2012-13 ski season flight program turned in a strong economic performance..."
Strong economic performance could be accomplished by not contracting any flights and saving all the tax dollars.
We were promised seats and more importantly passengers filling those seats. The performance there remains dismal.
So the strategy is:
I'm assuming the eventual report of how successful this has been will include "anecdotal evidence" instead of hard data showing a good return on investment (as has been the case for the past several years).
Of that $250k, $50k was paid to Ski Corp for marketing the flight. So a roughly average fair of $400 required $42.24 in marketing and $168.92 in subsidies.
This "beat expectations?"
Some quick math on the facts:
8 weeks * 4 incoming flights/week * 50 seats/flight * 74% load = 1,184 passengers
Total cost of Houston summer flight program = $250,000
$250,000 / 1,184 = $211.15 taxpayer cost per Houston flight passenger
What was sold by Yes 2 Air campaign: average $29 cost per passenger
Yes this is apples (summer) to oranges (winter), but that's a lot of money per passenger.
It's great news that the summer Houston flight performed "well," but I'm continually dismayed by the lack of data for air service guarantees and the LMD.
The data exists, easily purchasable for only a few thousand dollars from the Airline Reporting Corporation (ARC) database. This data would have answered Chuck's question, showing net new traffic due to the Houston flight versus people simply taking that route instead of Denver. It would also show the billing zip code of those purchasing the tickets to differentiate between local versus out of town travelers.
We pay the airlines millions and Ski Corp tens of thousands of dollars to "administer" the program. In return we only get "anecdotal" evidence. Of course United is going to say it didn't take away from their Denver service - if that happens, they simply scale back their voluntary service in favor of revenue guaranteed service.
First time I have ever seen an evaluation form with lower scores being better.
I suggest reading "The Effortless Experience." Customer's don't need to be delighted. They just want things to be easy and "effortless."
Considering that the blight report is a legal predecessor to the URA, yet the choice was made to move forward despite that being discredited by most city council members, it will be interesting to see if council continues forward with URA despite claiming that the BID passing was also a required predecessor.
(Although I am a member of the Steamboat Springs School Board, these comments are my own personal opinions and may not reflect those of my fellow board members)
Last login: Monday, December 15, 2014
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