Change Fees Up...
and Start ‘Wining’
$200: The amount United
Airlines will now charge to
change a ticket on a U.S.
domestic flights. US Air ways
quickly matched United’s move.
But... US Air ways also said it
will start serving complimentary
wine on flights to Europe and
South America. Drink up.
Lawmakers scramble to pass a bill that would end furloughs and ease flight delays at U.S. airports
FAA: ‘Staffing Challenges’ Causing Delays
occurred throughout the U.S.
The measure would “provide the Secretary of Transportation with the flexibility
to transfer certain funds to prevent reduced
operations and staffing of the Federal Aviation Administration.” The House is expected to vote on the bill shortly.
And the consequences are dire—the
U.S. Travel Association estimates that
flight delays resulting from FAA furloughs of air traffic controllers could cost
the U.S. more than $9 billion in lost economic output for the fiscal year.
In case you haven’t noticed, non- weather related delays at U.S. airports are on the rise. (And I know you’ve
noticed that weather-related delays are
definitely on the rise.)
Are furloughs and budget sequestration to blame? Although the Federal Aviation Administration cautioned that it was
still a little too soon to tell what overall
impact budget cuts would have on the nation’s air travelers, it’s safe to say it will
have some effect. So, is it time to blame
the Federal Government?
United Airlines CEO Jeff Smisek
thinks so and spoke out last last month
when he criticized the FAA furloughs of
air traffic controllers during a conference
call about United's first-quarter results.
The FAA said it is instituting "traffic-
management initiatives" at U.S. airports be-
cause it has to furlough air traffic
controllers due to sequestration. The FAA
said it is experiencing what it calls"staffing
challenges" in Miami, Los Angeles, Tampa
and Chicago O’Hare. It also said travelers
can expect delays in Las Vegas.
Meanwhile, on the global front…
The International Air Transport Association reported that worldwide airline passenger demand in February grew 3. 7
percent year over year, though demand
from the U.S. point of sale was weaker.
For North American carriers, international traffic in February increased 0.3
percent year over year, while domestic
U.S. traffic fell about 0.6 percent.
"As with international traffic, the year-on-year growth rate is masking a recent
uptick in the growth trend" in North
America, according to IATA. "The U.S.
market has been growing at an annualized
rate of 9 percent since the fourth quarter
IATA director general and CEO Tony
Tyler said the February figures were
positive overall, he did say "much of the
growth is concentrated on emerging
markets." Tyler pointed out that even
though domestic traffic did dip, capacity
fell even further—by some 2. 5 percent
year over year.
May 2013 Consulting