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Category Archives: Airlines

A rare victory of passengers over an airline

From September 5, 2018 American Airlines will allow passengers traveling on basic economy tickets to bring a carry-on bag into the cabin. Until that date they are only allowed to take a personal item that fits under the seat in front of them. If they want to take another bag they will need to pay a fee. The current policy has nothing to do with cost, for taking a carry-on bag into the cabin does not affect the airline’s cost. But carriers charge numerous fees that are unrelated to their...
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China’s power game with airlines

China has played a power game about how airlines should refer to Taiwan. The island of Taiwan, formerly known as Formosa, was inhabited by aborigines before the 17th century. The Qing dynasty – China’s last dynasty - annexed the island in 1683, but ceded Taiwan to Japan in 1895 following the first Sino-Japanese War. After the fall of the Qing dynasty the Republic of China (RoC) was established on mainland China in 1912. Following World War II the RoC took control of Taiwan in 1945. Consequently, the official name of Taiwan is the RoC,...
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Will China start an airline war?

The Chinese government considers Taiwan an inseparable part of China along with Hong Kong and Macau. Therefore, it demands that foreign carriers on their websites refer to Taiwan as Chinese territory rather than a sovereign state. US airlines sought extensions to a May 25, 2018 deadline for making adjustments to their website. The final deadline is July 25, 2018, but the White House describes the whole thing as “Orwellian nonsense”. China has never given up its claim that Taiwan must be reunited with China and rejects US requests for talks over how US...
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What do passengers value?

Delta Air Lines has embarked on a full-fleet interior renovation of its Boeing 777-200ER aircraft. The first refreshed 777 took flight on July 2, 2018 from Detroit to Beijing. The good news is that the main cabin has 9-abreast seating. This is how Boeing originally designed the aircraft. Meanwhile, however, most carriers have installed 10 seats in each row to maximize profits at the expense of passengers’ comfort. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines is Delta’s European partner. They operate codeshare flights, so that the flights of the 2...
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Why do Southwest and American settle a class-action lawsuit?

Passengers who bought domestic tickets on American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Southwest Airlines and United Airlines from July 2011 may get some money back. Southwest and American have already agreed to pay millions of dollars to customers who may have paid too much for their tickets. But Delta and United did not (yet) agree on a settlement. The 4 carriers are facing a class-action lawsuit in the Washington DC federal district court that started in 2015. Several cases were brought against...
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Airline satisfaction in USA decreasing

Airline passenger satisfaction in North America decreased in 2018 to 73 from 75 on a 100-point scale according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). Only 3 industries score lower: fixed-line telephone service, internet service providers and subscription television service. The low satisfaction level is not surprising because competition is very limited in the US airline industry. Nearly 80% of the market is under the control of just 4 carriers. And as the ACSI observes, they seem more inclined to collaborate than to compete, thereby reducing the risk that customers...
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