Thursday, June 12, 2008

And You Thought We Were Done for the Day....

And another one bites and another one bites and another one bites the dust…

US Airways says “Hey!!! Me too! Me too!” and announces their new $15 per bag fee (up to two bags).

Additionally, they announced other fantastic (clearly dripping with sarcasm here) news like:

--They will be significantly cutting capacity.

--They will be cutting 1,700 jobs.

--They will be charging for in-flight beverages.

--They will be increasing buddy pass fees.

Then, following all of these announcements, there’s a big “pep talk” by CEO Doug Parker. As employees and passengers alike partake in a collective eye rolling, he states:

“All of the actions we’re announcing today, when combined with the capacity other airlines have already announced, will have a materially positive effect on the financial performance of US Airways going forward. Our team has been here before and we won’t sit by and wait for external circumstances to dictate our future. A lot of “experts” are counting us out – but like all of you, I can’t wait to prove them wrong again. As part of my commitment to achieve this goal, as well as reaffirming my belief in our company, I’ve made the decision to invest an amount equal to my 2008 salary into US Airways by buying stock in the open market at the next trading opportunity for insiders.”

Soooooo....ya. Delta says they will not be charging the fee, but I'm not so sure. Continental indicates that they will probably be charging it sooner, rather than later, and NWA has remained quiet (presumably due to the pending merger?), so I'm having a hard time believing that, if all of the other majors adopt the fee, Delta will not.

However, lets assume that they don't. Will this present a competitive advantage for Delta? Let's have a quick roundtable. Will the fee(s) affect where you buy your tickets?

Personally, I'm in the market for an international flight at the moment, and have been looking around at options, many of which require me to fly NWA part of the way, and then move carriers. American was one of these options, and I refused to fly them, choosing instead to look elsewhere, even if it meant paying more.

If Delta remains first-bag-fee free, will you forgo flying the other carriers in favor of Delta?
It Depends (please comment below) free polls

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