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why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

Washington DC...
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why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

One reason, anyway...airlines are cutting back on capacity. See NYT piece on 11/21

nytimes.com/2012/…

Bangkok
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1. Re: why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

Hi,

Interesting article... and one that attempts to "open the door" to the repealing, or at least modification of the Merchant Marine Act of 1920 aka the Jones Act.

I say interesting because IF you do this, you then open the door to this non-national carriage of wholly domestic traffic in and via other modes of transport--

Marine traffic such as cargo volume from San Pedro (LA) to Oakland (SF) and up the west cost to Portland and Seattle.. or traffic from Miami up the eastern seaboard..

You've also got to then consider this can also be applied to cruising.. in that now foreign-flagged vessels would now be able to start and move onward to another US point without the need to have a 2nd international port call between domestic ports.

... and on the tricking side, we'd have to consider the notion that Mexican or even Canadian trucking firms (LTL and/or FCL) would now be able to originate AND discharge wholly domestic volumes without the need to move it trans-border.

A good thought process, but one that, IMHO, is laden with not only political landmines, but also opens the door to A LOT of other applications of this wavier or modification of Jones that I think would then open up a lot of other concerns.

Travel Safe,

Edited: 21 November 2012, 15:12
London, United...
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2. Re: why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

Maybe another answer would be what VS are now advertising:

virgin-atlantic.com/gb/…

Not so full cabins but they still sell every seat !

Maybe a future business model for VX ?

Elk Rapids, Michigan
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3. Re: why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

"But this, of course, leaves Aunt Sally in Sarasota, Fla., with fewer options to visit family during the holidays"

Yeah and? Like the rest of us she needs to pay what it costs to fly. Profit is not a dirty word. The airlines went though years of losses.

If the airline went out of business she would have even fewer options.

Fortaleza, CE
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4. Re: why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

A bit simplistic, I think. Foreign countries don't necessarily want to allow the same level of competition from U.S. airlines on their domestic routes. And one can't assume a foreign carrier is going to have the same legl of service on domestic routes, competing with low cost carriers here. Service on international routes is typically above that on short haul routes, even overseas. Singapore isn't going to pick up lock stock and barrel and start operating in the U.S.. Letting them extend international routs to any and all domestic routes? No limits on number of carriers? You really think you'd get hot towels between Florida and Ohio, for example? All in all, air fares have not risen much on domestic routes. Fuel costs are going to continue playin g a big role. And I don't think loweirng wages as much as possible is a conceern to just unions.

Detroit, MI
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5. Re: why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

The author seems to have little knowledge or economics or the airline industry. It would not help pricing. First of all, airline pricing is so tranparent that Airline A can match Airline B 30 seconds after a price change. It would not matter if Air France is allowed to sell a ticket from New York to LA. If the going rate on Delta, AA and JetBlue is $500, Air France is going to sell it for $500. As long as the FTC does not allow a monopoly (which is getting somewhat close with all the mergers) there is enough competition in the US to keep prices fair. Lets not forget, adjusted for inflation - fares today are still way lower than they were in the days of regulation.

Air France is also going to have major startup costs that the entrenched US based airlines already have. Are they going to go out and hire their own gate agents, mechanics, and US based flight crews? Lease gates, hangers, sales offices, etc?

It is all irrelevant as Air France already has a revenue sharing agreement with Delta. They take care of Delta's passengers in Europe while Delta takes care of AF passengers in the US. It is a great way to maxize resources. There are very few, if any, airlines with substantial capacity capable of crossing the worlds oceans that are not already part of an airline allilance.

Airlines have simply finally found out what manufacturing has known for years - minimize idle resources to maximize profit.

If the US really wanted to increase demand for travel (to create jobs), they would stop treating passengers (citizens and visitors alike) as criminals. I find it disgusting that visitors to the US get fingerprinted and have to have a mug shot taken when they go through immigration. How does this do anything to protect us? All it has done is push vacations, business meetings and conferences to other countries where visitors don't get the treatment the paranoid US gives them.

Latina, Italy
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6. Re: why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

<<I find it disgusting that visitors to the US get fingerprinted and have to have a mug shot taken when they go through immigration. How does this do anything to protect us? All it has done is push vacations, business meetings and conferences to other countries where visitors don't get the treatment the paranoid US gives them>>.

I wasn't aware of that. Couldn't they just scan the passport? And there's a chip in it with all the info. What more do they want?

I gave up planning holidays to the U.S. when I read the complicated passport/visa requirements for EU citizens. Now you tell me this !

NYC/Israel
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7. Re: why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

Sazza--Tower Air, a company that flew mainly between the US and Israel had that model back in their day. They liquidated in 2000--but if I remember correctly it was $75 each way over regular economy.

appia--Fingerprints and pictures protect because fingerprints are the one thing that an individual can not change. Even passports with chips can be forged. The US want so protect the US. Tourism is doing very well here. So, your statement of people going elsewhere is not true. BTW it is not paranoid treatment, since it is not unreasonable to want to know who is coming to the US. Sorry you do not like it. --enjoy your vacations elsewhere.

Edmonton
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8. Re: why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

AS Canadians we dont' have to be fingerprinted or have a mug shot taken. I'm assuming it's because of our different regulations that govern travel between Canada and the US.

Norddeutschland
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9. Re: why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

Fingerprints can easily be forged so taking fingerprint helps... exactly nothing against determined intruders.

But I think post 5 hit it on the spot.

Garden Bay, Canada
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10. Re: why US prices are high, planes crowded, service awful

Air France *does* sell tickets from NYC to LA... they are seats on Delta.