CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 3, 2013 |
When teensy-weensy Samoa Airlines debuted its pay-by-the-kilo policy in January, I doubt it expected to set off an international controversy about fat discrimination. But that's what happened when news seeped out this week after the airline's chief executive, Chris Langton, told ABC News radio in Australia that the system is not only fair but destined to catch on. “Doesn't matter whether you're carrying freight or people,” explained Langton. "We've amalgamated the two and worked out a figure per kilo.” Samoa Air, he added, has always weighed the human and non-human cargo it carries.
March 26, 2013 |
If you find an empty seat next to you on your next flight, consider yourself very lucky. The nation's airlines set a new record last year for the percentage of seats filled on commercial flights, with an overall average rate of 82.8%, up from 82% in 2011, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. The rate for filled seats--known as the passenger load factor--has been on the rise for several years as airlines cut seat capacity while demand has risen steadily. PHOTOS: TSA finds weapons in the strangest places For the year, U.S. airlines carried 0.8% more total passengers--736.6 million--than during 2011, according to the federal agency.
March 17, 2013 |
A trade group for the world's airlines is pushing to modernize a decades-old booking system to help speed along the latest airline trend: the sale of customized fare packages. Behind the effort is the International Air Transport Assn., the trade group for about 240 of the world's largest airlines. The group filed an application with the U.S. Department of Transportation last week to upgrade the computer system used by travel agents and online travel sites such as Orbitz and Travelocity.
March 12, 2013 |
Another airline executive is speaking out on a plan by federal regulators to allow passengers to bring small knives into the cabin of commercial planes. Doug Parker, chief executive at US Airways, wrote to the head of the Transportation Security Administration on Monday, asking that the agency reconsider the proposed policy change. The TSA announced last week plans to let passengers carry small folding knives -- with blades no more than 2.36 inches long and 1/2 inch wide -- into the cabin of a commercial plane, starting April 25. It is the biggest relaxation of the list of prohibited items since the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
March 3, 2013 |
Airline fees are among the most annoying aspect of commercial flying, but the biggest gripes among passengers are uncomfortable seats and tight legroom. That was one of the key findings of the latest survey of more than 2,000 people in the U.S. by the travel review site TripAdvisor.com. After uncomfortable seats and hefty passenger fees, the travelers who were surveyed said unpredictable flight delays, long security lines and obnoxious passengers were the biggest annoyances. The most irritating fees, according to the survey, are charges to check bags, carry bags into the cabin, upgrade to a better seat, print a boarding pass and buy in-flight extras.
February 7, 2013 |
In anticipation of a strong winter storm heading toward the Northeast, airlines have canceled more than 2,000 flights for Friday, mostly from New York, Boston and Chicago airports. The 2,004 cancellations for Friday are in addition to 475 flights canceled for Thursday and 454 canceled for Saturday, according to the flight-monitoring site FlightAware . The National Weather Service has issued storm warnings and predicted blizzard conditions when two weather systems meet over the next 24 hours to "produce a major and potentially historic winter storm for the Northeastern U.S. " Because the storm is to cut through in the nation's busiest air space, airline passengers across the country will also feel some of the pain.