Archive | August, 2005

Cutting GDS costs

After months of wrangling, SAS has finally presuaded Amadeus to lower its distribution costs in exchange for full access to all SAS fares. The Scandinavian carrier has been a vehement critic of the Global Distribution System (GDS) model whereby travel agents receive several dollars per ticket in kickbacks to book with a particular GDS. The […]

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How can they tell?

Northwest Airlines went through the second week of a mechanics strike with flying colours, or colours flying. The airline is fulfiling more than 98% of its schedule and operating at about industry average punctuality. The union, AMFA or Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association, half-heartedly disputes the airline’s on-time performance data but says the real effects of […]

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One-way tickets to ride

SAS has become the latest European carrier to go for one-way fares on its short-haul route network, following in the footsteps of Aer Lingus and the UK’s bmi. The Irish flag carrier became the first network major to follow the example of low-cost players and offer cheaper one-way fares, and do away with the much-hated saturday night […]

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Galley chatter

Crew chatter from the galley can tell you a lot – if you have no shame about eavesdropping or more properly bulkhead-dropping. On a recent America West long-haul flight, the cabin crew were like excited kids talking about the merger with US Airways this fall. The new aircraft livery was topic A. When airline people […]

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A thinned out Team

Delta and Northwest Airlines will have to work the corridors of power through the dog days if they are to get what they want in Washington. In addition to the usual laundry list – pension reform, tax relief, help on security mandates – they have a new task. These two of the three US players […]

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North by Northwest

It would have seemed a hollow boast when an airline seemed proud about getting “most” of its flights off the runway, much less on time. But Northwest Airlines is making the boast and people are listening as the airline enters the first full week of a strike by a union representing most of its plane-fixers […]

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Renaissance for Boeing’s 747 and 767

The upbeat prediction of Boeing chief salesman Scott Carson at the Paris Air Show in mid-June of a healthy number of orders for its 747 and 767 lines is coming to pass. The announcement of an order from UPS for eight 747-400 freighters follows on from a six -400 freighter order from Guggenheim Aviation Partners […]

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Management moves at easyJet

The retirement of Ed Winter, easyJet’s chief operating officer (COO), makes this an opportune time to discuss the make-up of the management team at Europe’s second largest low-cost carrier as it continues its search for a new chief executive to replace Ray Webster. Webster announced he was stepping down in May. In early August the […]

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A bid for easyJet: Could it happen?

It is not often that an airline stock sets the market alight, but that is exactly what the surge in easyJet’s share price since the third quarter of last year has done. Back then, it was trading at just above the 120p mark. It is now changing hands at around 300p. The reason for this […]

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BA’s perfect storm

Everybody is surprised at how this tiny dispute in Gate Gourmet was able to leap from one little-known company to a major flag-carrier in a few hours and then bring the giant to its knees within minutes – rather like a computer virus. But it doesn’t take much. Behind the mystery is the chronically deficient […]

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