I assume the OP are talking about low winds.
Hence bigger kites quite often - most LEIs dont give the same punch when looped, as smaller ones, thus you can start earlier if you get the right downsweep and use the apparent wind to accelerate, instead of the loop.
OR, make rearwards loop so you can use the apparent wind on the forward stroke.
With medium or smaller kites the loop gives you a lot more power than the downsweep, but for bigger kites most will gain most in a downsweep where you use your increasing board speed to gain even more power.
It is a delicate balance
Regarding getting ashore if the wind dies as you write, no matter what kitesize, then you HAVE to loop the kite, the only way to avoid a swim.
Depower the kite somewhat on the trim, so you dont choke it when looped in too little wind to ride.
Then loop twice in one direction holding one bar end, and twice in the other holding the other bar end - back and fourth with one hand only, while you hold your board with the other hand.
This way you and your board can get ashore in ridiculously low winds, even with a dry kite when on land again