American lost a whole lot less than it would have otherwise, and Continental, Delta, and Northwest all reported quarterly profits that would have been losses without one-time events including government handouts. None of these airlines made money off of their airline operations. Delta and Northwest had help for their bottom-lines from the sale of the Worldspan Computer Reservation System.And as Northwest disentangles from Worldspan, they have struck a deal to give Sabre (a competing reservation system) access to its web fares that are currently only available on its own website and on Orbitz in exchange for lower booking fees.Remind me again why the government thinks we need to regulate these distribution vehicles?
It’s a refrain we’ve heard many times before, but Richard Branson says he wants to start a low-fare carrier in the U.S. Silly U.S. laws limit foreign ownership of U.S. carriers to 49% and voting control to 25%. The much-maligned (by me) Transportation Secretary Norm Mineta wants to increase voting control to 49%. That would encourage Branson in his quest.But there’s still no reason that ownership should be limited at all.
Amazon is offering a $300 internet and camera enabled phone for free with activation. They also have a $250 phone for $50 with activation.
Joe Brancatelli is defending the TSA. He explains away profligate spending as complaints from Hypocritical sleazeballs from the Republican Congressional delegation Meanwhile, the Department of Homeland Security’s own Inspector General is investigating extensive use of resorts by the TSA. The inquiry was prompted by a letter from Democratic Sens. Byron Dorgan of North Dakota and Ron Wyden of Oregon, who questioned a seven-week stay by 20 Pearson recruiters at the Wyndham Peaks Resort and Golden Door Spa in Telluride, Colo. The resort boasts an 18-hole golf course, spectacular views, an indoor pool and fluffy robes. Democratic Senators Wyden and Dorgan. Not what I’d call “from the Republican Congressional delegation.”Brancatelli doesn’t specifically address the major concerns about the TSA in any case…
Midwest Airlines has avoided a bankruptcy filing. At least for now. While their costs will be reduced with the new agreements they’ve reached, it’s unclear (at least to me) that their lower service business model will attract the revenue they need to prosper over the long term.
Enter to win two Virgin Atlantic “Upper Class” tickets and two nights hotel. You actually have to answer three questions in the “make your bed and lie in it” game, but the answers are obvious and the “incorrect” answers are funny.
Reader William writes: My father has been banking American Express miles for the last 15 years. To date he has accumulated 1.3 Million AMEX miles. By the time he retires, in about two years, he thinks he will have nearly 2 Million miles. He uses his card for major purchases at his firm. His plan is to use the miles to fly and vacation with after he retires. I am worried that keeping your miles in one place – especially that many – might mean he could also lose them all at once. For example if AMEX drops a FF partner he would like to fly or a hotel chain he wants to stay at – he would then be out of luck. Should he start moving them into certain programs or just leave them…
Two recent Flyertalk threads discuss how to get elite status on KLM and on Continental without jumping through any special hoops (you know, like actually flying).
Last month I complained about hotels tacking undisclosed fees onto their published rates.Word now follows that both Marriott and Starwood are providing total room pricing to the Worldspan system and plan to do the same with other distribution networks soon.View from the Wing gets results: post hoc ergo proctor hoc!
Following on last month’s Denver Post autopsy of United, the Chicago Tribune has its own series. Part one and part two are available. Parts three and four will be published on Tuesday and Wednesday. Now we just need to wait for the San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco hub), Washington Post (Washington Dulles hub), and Los Angeles Times (LA hub) to have their say.