In a bid to curry favor with the financial community, United today unveiled a plan to cut costs by $2 billion annually, and increase ancillary revenue by $700 million.
The plan may bring smiles to the faces of United's stockholders and others with a stake in the airline's profitability. But United's customers should be worried.
Although the plan makes only vague references to actual tactics—"reducing fuel consumption, increasing productivity, reducing sourcing costs, improving maintenance processes and inventory procedures, and optimizing distribution methods"—it's hard to imagine making such significant cuts in costs without cutting back on services to its customers. ... read more»
Want an upgrade to first class? Of course you do!
How badly do you want it? More to the point, how much are you willing to pay for it?
Effective immediately, would-be upgraders can reality-test their aspirations by bidding for upgrades on American flights. For now, the bidding is offered only in "a limited set of markets," but it's likely to be expanded systemwide once the system and procedures have proven themselves. (The Plusgrade upgrade-bidding software American has adopted is already in use by a number of other airlines, including Air New Zealand, Austrian Airlines, and Virgin Atlantic.)
Upgrades are available for bids six days prior to a flight's departure. For eligible flights, passengers enter their bids and payment information on the airline's dedicated bidding webpage. Successful bidders will be notified by email at least 24 hours before the flight. ... read more»
If it's a good deal (or a notably bad one) from an airline, hotel, or car-rental loyalty program, you can read all about it here, and plan your travel accordingly. ... read more»
Just in time for the Thanksgiving travel crush, Southwest this week snagged bragging rights as the first U.S. carrier to offer its passengers gate-to-gate WiFi access.
Effective immediately, Southwest flyers can use their personal electronic devices in airplane mode from gate to gate on all Southwest flights. There's no charge to connect to the airline's Inflight Entertainment Portal for access to Dish television programming, a flight tracker, shopping, and games. Movies are offered for $5 per movie, per device. And Internet access is available for $8 per day, per device. Some high-bandwidth applications like Netflix and VoIP are blocked. ... read more»
JetBlue this week became the ninth airline to participate in the TSA's PreCheck program, joining Alaska, American, Delta, Hawaiian, Southwest, United, US Airways, and Virgin America.
PreCheck passengers are entitled to use a special security-clearance lane, with less intrusive screening: Shoes, belts, and light outerwear may be left on, and laptops and 3-1-1 compliant liquids may be left in carry-on bags. The service is currently offered at around 100 U.S. airports. ... read more»
The unholy teaming of Cyber Monday and Black Friday has been dubbed "Cyber Week" by many media outlets. No matter what you want to call it, know that this period of time—Friday, November 29 through Monday, December 2—is a cornucopia of all kinds of cut-rate offers. And the travel industry is no exception. We scoured the Earth (actually, we just looked on the Internet) to bring you the best travel deals available. Here are some of the most mouthwatering hotel, resort, and rail bargains available during the upcoming post-Turkey Day period of shopping insanity. ... read more»