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LoFare Airlines

Initial conditions Teams take on the role of the executive management for a low-fare airline – either starting a new business from nothing, or taking on a business that has already been running for some years.
  • Starting a new airline, users can choose the competitive intensity of the industry they will be up against, and can also choose for rivals to start some time after they do.
  • Running an existing airline, users can choose from a set of pre-defined challenges, each with a unique set of conditions, both for the business itself and for the market and competitors.
The business is self-contained – not part of a corporate structure with other businesses. The airline is initially competing mostly with full-service airlines, who charge much higher prices, but other low-cost competitors may develop.

The simulation runs for 20 years, with quarterly decisions, but interesting strategies can be run over just a few years, from different parts of the 20-year time-frame.

Objectives can be chosen by instructors or by teams themselves. One such objective can be simple business growth – for example, grow the largest airline possible over 5 years. However, profitable business growth is a more realistic objective. As the market matures, teams will do well simply to stay profitable!

Competition from other low-fare airlines can be disabled, or set at different levels of intensity. This sets the rate at which competitors open new routes, how aggressively they start services on routes that the user’s airline already operate, and how aggressive they are on price. Competition can start immediately, or some time after your business gets going. There is no competition between different team-PCs, so each team’s performances reflects their own expertise.

Feature List
Decisions Decisions come in two levels:
  • the simple level decisions allow choice of leasing more (or fewer) aircraft, offering services on more/fewer routes, average fare per journey and marketing spend
  • the advanced level adds decisions on buying as well as leasing aircraft, changing the frequency of flights offered and hiring call-center staff
In addition, competing low-fare airlines can be activated (as well as competition from full service airlines), and their competitive aggression can be varied. If low-fare competitors are active, decisions for opening routes, marketing and fares are split so players can make different choices on routes they operate alone and others where low-fare competitors are active.

Teams choose when to run forward and the simulation runs forward one month with each step, or can choose to repeat decisions over several months.
"Go Back" option A 'Go back' option allows previous decisions to be revised an alternative strategies explored.
Challenges Four pre-set challenges are included in the game, covering different levels of complexity. Each starts with the business already operating:
  • 'Slow start' offers a small and slow-growing business.
  • 'New competition' features a strongly growing business that has attracted new competitors.
  • 'Chasing a rival' is a newly started business, entering the market 4 years after strong competitors started.
  • 'Complex issues' features a well-developed business in a maturing market, with established competitors.
Save new challenges Teams can save the game at any point, to explore alternative strategies.

Instructors can create new challenges by running the game with their own decisions, then saving and distributing the game to teams
Resource map A ‘Resource Map’ of the business architecture showing key resource relationships is available. In addition, a detailed diagram shows how competition to develop new routes against competitors is changing.
Reports Six numerical management reports show operating and financial data – plus a 'quarterly review' summary.

Three further reports give performance information for financial-year reporting periods.
Graphs 12 standard graphs are included covering customer service, fleet and route operations and financial performance. In addition, any item in the tables or resource-maps can be graphed by double-clicking their titles.
Table data 6 tables show the entire history of data on routes, passenger journeys, aircraft, operating costs, marketing and cash flow. Plus table of user decisions.
Save Comments with games When saving games can add comments: this makes it easy to create new scenarios for students.
Table of User Decisions Makes it easy to keep track of your actions.
Copy to other applications Images of all Reports, Graphs and Tables can be copied into other applications for inclusion in documents and slide presentations produced.

All game data can be copied from the tables into spreadsheets for further analysis.
Custom Graphs Any item appearing in a table can be represented as a graph - simply double click on the table heading.
Teachers materials Site License materials include the user’s guide as well as instructor’s slides and slide notes.
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The LoFare Airlines Microworld has been selected as a complementary simulation to Contemporary Strategy Analysis by Robert Grant.

Registered teachers can request free evaluation licences and access to Inspection teaching material.

If you hold an academic post registration is free - use our contact form to register and request registration as a teacher.

Videos

One minute overview: (no sound),
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LoFare Airline Microworld Tour
(26 minutes)
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Strategy frameworks for LoFare Airlines
(48 minutes)
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