Cranky on the Web (March 14 – 18)

Fuel ‘surcharge’ a fare increase with a fancy nameCNN.com Out of the Office
This week, it’s time to talk about fuel prices. They’re going higher and so are fares, but the two aren’t completely related.

In the Trenches: The Good and the Bad of PaypalIntuit Small Business Blog
I’ve been using Paypal since the beginning for Cranky Concierge, but there is some good and some bad in that.

Approaching Gloom: Airlines Slow Growth, Fill Fewer Seats in FebruaryBNET Headwinds
Things started to slow down in February and some airlines couldn’t even fill the seats they offered.

O’Hare, Airlines Both Win as Feds Waste Money on an Expensive Expansion ProjectBNET Headwinds
O’Hare’s expansion is moving ahead thanks to another infusion of federal funds.

9 Responses to Cranky on the Web (March 14 – 18)

  1. Scott says:

    How about a whole article on ‘fuel surcharges’. A lot of airlines publish their fuel cost /Seat Mile; so you can calculate how much of a gouge it really is.

    Example Air Canada to Europe; where the “fuel surcharge” can exceeds the fuel cost/seat-mile on some routes (like YHZ-LHR); or can represent 4x of the airlines portion of the fuel cost.

    • CF says:

      Well I’ve got a CNN piece coming out this week on fuel hedging, but I’m not sure if I’ll end up doing something on the surcharge.

      • scott says:

        Well, I spoke too soon, Air Canada raised their fuel surcharge this week so that virtually any ticket from North America to Europe includes a fuel surcharge that exceeds the actual fuel cost (per seat). Not to mention a ‘NAVCANADA Surcharge’ (ATC fees) that exceed the actual NavCanada charge (thank you Navcanada for putting a calculator on your web page).

        Sure, this is a cranky-jackass award in the making

  2. travelnate says:

    cf ~ interesting article on paypal.

    merchant accounts are becoming more and more difficult to obtain from the banks, especially if you are an airline. I know we had to jump thru hoops at Mokulele to get ours upgraded so we could have an online booking tool; and two other airlines I was doing consulting for, we went thru almost every single processor on the planet before we found one willing to work with us. It would be nice if they’d even CONSIDER a holdback, most of them flatly said “NO” from the get go.

  3. I love how any article you right on CNN 90% of the comments are negative and attack the article. The commenter on that site are seem to hate anything with your name on it.

    • CF says:

      Yep – but that’s fine. I’m more than happy to see constructive discussion but most of the time people are strangely angry. That’s why I love it here – the discussion can get passionate but it’s usually great back and forth.

  4. aliquot says:

    Cranky,
    In your article “approaching gloom” you claim that all the “legacy” carriers saw there load factor drop. Legacy carriers are usually defined as major pre-deregulation interstate carriers. People often forget that AS, who saw their load factor increase fits this definition.

    • Sanjeev M says:

      I guess he means the Big 6 (which is now the Big 3 + US Airways).

      AS is more focused on the west and Alaska, so can’t be considered a “nationwide” carrier. I don’t even consider Frontier a “nationwide” carrier even though they serve coast to coast.

      Either way, for non-airline dorks such as those who read BNET, I guess it works.

      A for Airline Dorks = A.NET
      B for Business ppl = BNET

    • CF says:

      Yeah, I know that Alaska fits into that category, but I never really lump them in with the big guys because they run such a different kind of a business. But you’re right, if you’re going by the definition of major pre-dereg interstate carriers then they would fall into it.

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