Southwest Airlines passengers are using wheelchairs to get priority boarding and don’t even seat in them, instead using the wheelchair as a luggage cart to push their carry on bags.
Alaska Airlines has announced a deal to buy Hawaiian Airlines for $1 billion cash and assumption of $900 million in Hawaiian Airlines debt. They will keep the two separate brands, though combine their loyalty programs. The deal is expected to close in 12-18 months, subject to approval of Hawaiian’s shareholders and making it through anti-trust review.
For Mileage Plan and oneworld frequent flyers this is great. For Hawaiian customers this should be fine-to-positive. It’s Alaska shareholders that may not benefit from the merger integration costs in order to swallow an unprofitable airline. Although perhaps the biggest beneficiaries will be the transaction and anti-trust lawyers whose billable hours will be immeasurable.
Here’s the full detail, from an internal memo, on how pilot priority for first class upgrades works now at American Airlines.
The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express now has an initial bonus offer. Most of the time it hasn’t. Frankly, the card is too good, and extra points should get you to pay attention.
American Airlines is refusing to fill empty seats with nonrev passengers through end of year in order to comply with the airport’s passenger caps.
Passengers were escorted through a restricted part of the airport, typically off-limits to passengers, by Delta employees and TSA staff. After passing through Customs and checking their luggage, the passengers encountered the first issue.
The group was mistakenly taken to the wrong airplane three separate times, being transported by bus to different planes. When they eventually boarded the correct plane, they encountered another problem.
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United announced today that spend on their co-brand credit cards will contribute more towards elite status next year. Coinciding with that announcement, there are new improved initial bonus offers for several of their cards.
American Airlines and United Airlines want Chicago O’Hare’s expansion that they signed off on in 2018 slowed down – or stopped – as the project runs $1.5 billion over budget. Somehow the carriers are surprised that a massive public infrastructure project, in Chicago no less, is spending far more than originally projected?
And in fact it’s only just the ‘next phase’ where a 24% projected cost overrun totals $1.5 billion more than expected. That’s before construction on the new terminal even starts! The project’s total cost has grown from $8.7 billion to a projected $12.1 billion. So the terminal’s overrun is only one piece of an overall $3.4 billion price increase.
Airlines charge banks more for loyalty points than the average consumer realizes, often differentiating between initial bonus miles and ongoing spend, and also accounting differently for miles earned through flying versus credit card spending. During the pandemic, financial disclosures revealed significant margins in airline frequent flyer programs, with American, Delta, and United showing varied margins due to different internal accounting and pricing strategies.