The World’s Busiest Airports and John Oliver Takes On Credit Scores

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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, 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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  1. Gary, I wholeheartedly agree with you that the US legacy carriers should stop bitching about the ME3. That being said, when you refer to American as “the most profitable airline in the world” are you doing so on the basis of their gross profit? Or their ROE? Because if the former I think that’s a little misleading (I could start an airline with $100 billion of cash, invest in corporate bonds and one plane and be the most profitable airline by gross profit). I think profit margin is a more apt figure for making that argument than gross profit.

  2. Note that Kirby’s speech also dealt with low cost carriers like Spirit and Frontier. While these airlines are troublesome for AA — since the majority of travelers buy their tickets on price alone — Kirby ACCEPTS the fair competition from them because they are actual for-profit businesses that operate without gov’t subsidy. No matter what nonsense you spout, it cannot be plausibly argued that the Middle East airlines operate without massive, unprecedented subsidy. No for-profit company can compete with such enterprises. The US airlines are largely shielded from this problem by geography — the Middle East is an entirely illogical connecting point for most int’l flights headed to the USA — which is a luxury panel-participant Lufthansa doesn’t have. BTW, I assume even you might reluctantly acknowledge that the Middle East airlines don’t have 85% of Middle East to Europe traffic simply because they offer a better product, right? I think any sentient human being might understand that the tens of billions in subsidies might also have something to do with this.

  3. Once again, John Oliver is full of shit. His arguments are almost always based entirely on logical fallacies. It’s amazing that anyone takes him seriously.

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