But low fare carriers aren’t a magic bullet for success

Airtran is pulling out of Piedmont Triad International even though they’re running at about 80% load factors. Airtran also pulled their Washington Reagan-National to West Palm Beach flights almost immediately after their introduction (inconveniencing me!).

It’s worth remembering that in spite of the conventional wisdom that the low cost carriers can do no wrong, not every business decision works out for them.

But at least pulling out of a market is a sign that they care about profitability and are willing to make tough and even embarassing decisions in furtherance of their bottom line, a lesson that the major carriers need desperately to learn.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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