August 2010

The Department of Justice green-lighted the Continental Airlines-United Airlines merger late last week, and now the corporate celebrity wedding seems like a done deal. The combined airline will be the world’s largest, but how will it do in the customer-service department?

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Let’s treat airlines like profit-making entities instead of like wards of the state. If the last decade was a disaster for major airlines, the next decade is shaping up to be nirvana unless we are faced with an unexpected oil shock and a series of volcanoes.

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AA doubles overhead bin space, ANA calls 787 delay regrettable, Boeing keeps eye on service

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Maybe you’re the squeaky wheel — the guest who keeps writing back over and over, even after you’ve been told “no” in a dozen different ways. Or maybe your grievances fall into the “special circumstances” category — you’re sick, you’re broke, you’re having a bad year.

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Airlines look upon landing and take-off slots as personal property. However, the airlines have not paid for these slots. They were distributed by the FAA back when the airspace was wide-open and air-traffic problems were not even envisioned. They belong to the public, not the airlines.

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Janice Hough just returned from a flight where a lap child was whining for the entire flight. Simply speaking, he was WAY too big to be a lap baby, no matter how old he was. He didn’t have enough room.

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Ned Levi explores the problems US travelers are having using their magnetic stripe technology based US credit cards in Europe, which uses “chip and pin” technology, and what plans, if any, Visa, Mastercard, and American Express have to mitigate their US cardholders’ problems who travel internationally.

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New taxi smart app, new NYC restaurant grading system, Boeing delays delivery of Dreamliner

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The best chance of stopping the merger of giants Continental and United Airlines is gone. The same department that two years ago recommended against allowing these two airlines to for an airline alliance with antitrust immunity, just approved a full merger. Go figure.

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What is travel and what is tourism? For me, tourism is seeing the world from behind glass—in a hotel, a bus, a restaurant. You go to another country, and watch the people from a safe distance, while you check off sites in a guidebook. Travel means, above all, that you interact with people and experience […]

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