December 24, 2010

Weekly Airline News Roundup – Not Even a Mouse

Image courtesy of twoshortplanks on Flickr

This was pretty quiet one as far as news weeks go in the airline industry. Usually there are more big news stories than we can possibly highlight in this humble little roundup, but perhaps tantamount to the holiday week, reporters’ eyes were turned to other things and not many a creature was flying, not even a mouse.

Topping the charts this week was most likely the damper the snow put on European air travel, particularly challenging given the hefty flight loads during the holiday week.

Also this week came news that Lufthansa is eyeing a possible purchase of SAS, Air New Zealand is letting fliers cuddle up with its new “cuddle class fleet,” (which basically means you and your significant other can purchase the middle seat and lie down – spooning required), and the FAA is considering slapping Continental and American Eagle with fines for alleged maintenance violations.

As oil prices creep up, airlines, and customers in turn, are feeling the burn. Good old Canadian WestJet is stepping up to the big leagues with bigger planes (well, at least one leased 757) and discussions of longer haul flights. American, meanwhile, may delay the start of its flights to Tokyo, Qantas plans to have five A380s flying, and an Emirates flight had a little kerfuffle when the plane became lodged in some grass that had frozen after landing.

In less exciting news, Delta pulled out of three smaller online travel agencies reportedly in an effort to consolidate its online booking efforts, Airbus sold 50 A320s to South American airline, LAN, and express lanes are making an appearance at airports for international travelers arriving late.

U.S. airlines are using their profits to pare down debt, according to one article this week, the TSA blasted the FAA for not meeting airline inspection deadlines, and a flight attendant (in Canada no less) was sentenced to eight years for smuggling drugs. In yet another airline-related arrest this week, a man was sentenced to prison for his claims to having started an airline that wasn’t actually real.

This week in the JetBlue world we announced our 66th BlueCity, Martha’s Vineyard, the extension of our President and CEO Dave’s employment agreement and enjoyed some fun a cappella caroling Live From T5.

As always, safe travels and a very happy and healthy holidays! Thanks for reading!

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