Cranky on the Web (August 19 – 23)

By Popular Demand: PlaneBusiness Analysis Of GAO Report on American Airlines-US Airways MergerPlaneBusiness – no subscription required
A lot of you have asked about my review of the GAO study on the American/US Airways merger that I did for PlaneBusiness back in July. Holly has published it on her blog, PlaneBuzz, so anyone can read it now.

JetBlue cuts reduce Long Beach passenger volumeOrange County Register
I was asked to comment for an article about how JetBlue is reducing its schedule in Long Beach on certain days.

In the Trenches: Should We Have a Tipping Policy?Intuit Small Business Blog
Our concierges do great work, and lately, we’ve had a couple clients want to tip them. It’s not necessary, but I’m wondering if we need a formal policy.

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17 Responses to Cranky on the Web (August 19 – 23)

  1. Goober says:

    After reading more and more into this case it’s starting to look like it’s pretty much over for us airways and aa. I think the judge will not give us airways their nov 13th case and in fact I think the case won’t be heard till some time in march. If that is the case then AA will simply walk away from this deal.

    If it does go to trial I don’t think the airlines can hope to defeat the doj case enough for the judge to throw out the suit.

  2. Unlike Goober, I think this will go to trial soon. I read a Dallas Morning news story that mentions the judge has a long trial during the time frame DOJ is requesting.

    If there is a settlement (which I think is likely, although it’s just a guess) one of the simple concessions could be the end of the Wright Amendment restrictions. That would immediately add Southwest as a competitor out of Dallas.

    I find it interesting that Southwest is so absent from DOJ’s complaint.

    Hmm …

    • Goober says:

      she will just delay the trial to march.

    • The Wright Amendment restrictions can’t be ended by the DOJ or a trial court. They’re enshrined in law, and I doubt either the government or US/AA can rationalize that they have standing to challenge that law. Besides, we have just over a year until the Wright Amendment ends on October 16th, 2014 on its own. If US/AA’s merger goes through they’ll still be in the middle of integration at that time.

      • If there’s enough political pressure, Congress can pass legislation rather quickly.

        • Which Congress have you been watching? If they were confined to a wet paper bag, I’m not sure they could pass legislation to remove themselves from it.

          • Nick, I wrote “CAN.” I also wrote “If there’s enough political pressure.”

            Believe it or not, this Congress HAS passed legislation. None of it’s very important, but …

            If all sides come to Congress with this, it CAN act.

  3. Roger says:

    For tipping I’d have an official charity you support and ask for tips to be directed there

  4. So how does JetBlue cut back service and not give up slots? Sounds like they should have to use them or give them up. Are you allowed to not use them for a certain time before having to give them up, or are the yours even if you don’t use them?

    • CF says:

      David – Slot rules in Long Beach require only using your slots for more than half the days of the month. So it gives the airline leeway to cut dates.

  5. Tipping

    Aren’t tips/gifts received considered income like waiters so your workers need to declare them on their income tax forms? If you have a formal policy or filter tips via your website couldn’t the IRS get after you as that being income to the business even if passed on to workers? What if they don’t declare it, can the IRS go after you since the ‘via’ was your business.

    Sounds like a talk with the IRS is needed before you get into this more.

    • CF says:

      David – That’s not an issue for us. The people receiving tips are independent contractors. We’ll just put it on the 1099 at the end of the year because yes, it’s income.

  6. Tipping: I’d set up a private way to formalize tipping. (e.g. a specific Paypal page or Paypal email account for tipping.) I’d also have a formal policy that concierges cannot solicit tips, and soliciting tips is grounds for termination/contract discontinuation.

    • CF says:

      Nick – Good idea on not soliciting tips. I do want to make sure that never happens. There are just some people who are so appreciative of the help they received that they insist on doing it, but we certainly shouldn’t be fishing.

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