Archive: December, 2008
Tom BeldenAirlines and Christmas cheer don't always go together but The Inquirer had a story last Sunday that did. I was remiss last weekend in not posting for my blog readers this informative piece by staff writer Linda Loyd on USA 3000, the hometown airline serving mostly leisure travelers, that is facing a tough time in a recession but is sticking to its game plan. Read more here.
As we have mentioned several times before, airlines are hanging on to their fees for checked-baggage and other services that once were included in air fare, despite the steep drop in fuel costs. Happy New Year! The latest version of the story, including words from US Airways CEO Doug Parker, can be found in this AP story.
Tom BeldenThe Department of Tranporation just started collecting data on long tarmac delays from the airlines but has already found a flaw in what was reported for October. A complete story can be found in the trade magazine Travel Weekly., which notes that a consumer group that was formed to push the government into requiring reporting of the data pointed out the problem. A note about the flaw has been added to the stats, available at the Bureau of Transportation Statistics Web site.
Tom BeldenSouthwest has made no secret of its desire to start international service and has an agreement to provide code-share flights with WestJet, a low-cost Canadian carrier. Now Southwest has filed an application with the Department of Transportation to operate flights itself to Canada if that's what it decides to do. Read more here.
Today's Winging It column takes a look back at how PHL's customer-service reputation imrpoved in 2008, and at other important events that affected airline service during the year. Find the column here.
In response to the column, one reader has e-mailed me this morning, citing a US Airways problem at PHL that others have complained about as well. As I said in the column, the number of complaints has gone down, but two or three others have mentioned this in recent months: A flight arrives at Terminal A but inbound checked bags are sent to Terminal B. OK, so far, but US Airways personnel don't always know what's going on or where the find the bags. The overhead information screens that should detail which carousel bags from each flight will arrive don't always display the flight that has docked at Terminal A. We await word from the airline on why this happens and what's they're doing about it.