The Major Airlines face challenges each day. Should we be concerned about this? Should things that affect their costs of operation, matter to us? We argue that they do. Ultimately they will pass those added costs off to us the paying customer.
It’s no secret that the Major Airlines face constant challenges each day in the operations of their businesses. Whatever your feelings are about the airlines, it is clear that in order to run businesses this complex, one is sure to face significant challenges that are to be faced on an ongoing basis. Last week in our Digest ‘Your Flight was Canceled. But… You Got Paid!’We shared the news that “the current administration is looking to propose rules that will force airlines to pay passengers for canceled flights or major delays”. We also stated that:
We should note that a lot of the challenges airlines face today are remnants of the effects of the lockdowns due to the pandemic, labor challenges, high inflation, and other factors. That being said, having the airlines pay for cancellations and delays would mean that the airlines will need to account for this extra cost in their operations. Since airlines sometimes cannot control some of the factors that go into causing them to delay or cancel flights — extreme weather conditions and air traffic control delays. Therefore, we expect that this ruling will increase the price of airline tickets even further, as airlines seek to offset the additional cost.
We would like to state here again that we are not in support of cancellations, but we must be pragmatic about what we can expect from airlines. To follow up on our digest from last week, this week we will share with the reader some stories on the challenges that airlines face each day. Hoping the reader will get an understanding of the added complexity and cost to the airlines that rulings and regulations will cause.
Why is it so important that we understand this? Because, ultimately airlines are profit-making entities. In order to make a profit any cost borne by the airline no matter where they originate, at best will ultimately be shouldered by air travelers, and at worst the taxpayers.
American Airlines refuses to reimburse St. Louis man after allegedly misplacing his $26k prosthetic leg
A disabled St. Louis man is calling on American Airlines to properly reimburse him after the company allegedly lost his $26,000 prosthetic leg during a 2020 flight. According to FOX 2, the incident occurred while Michael Williams was flying back to St. Louis from Indianapolis. “Dealing with a prosthetic leg is not as easy as people think it is,” Williams said. “You can’t do this to somebody that’s disabled. Just say, ‘Hey, we lost something of yours, but we’re not going to pay for it,’” he added.
By Francis Akhalbey | Face2Face Africa
United Airlines Makes a Bold Move to Fix a Huge Problem
The dearth of pilots is particularly acute because any hiring and retention is offset by both the high cost of training and a mandatory retirement age of 65. North American airlines are currently at least 12,000 pilots short while even the U.S. Air Force currently has 1,500 pilots fewer than it would like. But from baggage handlers to airport staff, the labor shortage is also being felt in all sorts of other airport roles. When travel ground to a halt amid the covid-19 outbreak in 2020, U.S.-based airlines collectively furloughed nearly half a million workers.
By Veronika Bondarenko | The Street
Delta Airlines Customers Angry as Familiar Problem Gets Worse
Delta Airlines (DAL) customers are continuing to find themselves frustrated over a familiar annoyance. In April, the problem was more widely reported on social media than now, so hope does persist that it’s getting better. The irritation centers around the carrier’s long hold times as customers take to the phone to report issues or attempt to gather information. “Been waiting on hold for @Delta for over an hour and a half,” tweeted Michael Lane (@1MichaelLane). “I’ve probably been on the phone with them 5–6 hours over 3 calls involving an upcoming trip. This is frustrating!”
By Jeffrey Quiggle | The Street
Southwest Airlines pilots vote to strike. Here’s why your trip probably won’t be affected.
Southwest Airlines pilots voted to authorize a strike, but it’s highly unlikely it will happen. Just a few weeks ago, American Airlines pilots announced they had also authorized a strike in a similar vote. In both cases, the vote is just the first step on a path that rarely if ever ends in an actual work stoppage. In order for a strike to occur, negotiations need to break down between the pilots and airline management, the National Mediation Board needs to get involved, a mandatory 30-day cooling off period must be observed, during which President Joe Biden could appoint a board to oversee further negotiations. If all of that and some other steps fail, only then would the pilots actually be legally allowed to walk off the job.
By Zach Wichter | USA TODAY
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