Prognosis for US Air

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Feb 2nd, 2004, 01:47 PM
  #1
Cassandra
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Prognosis for US Air

What do you expert airline industry mavens think is going to happen with US Air, based on recent developments?
 
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Feb 2nd, 2004, 02:14 PM
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I am holding tickets to France on USAIR in Sept. and worried about their survival. What have you heard, Cassandra?
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Feb 3rd, 2004, 04:54 AM
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Am also worried - want to book Thanksgiving tickets for son from Savannah to Boston - not a lot of good options if USAir goes belly-up.
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Feb 3rd, 2004, 06:13 AM
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Looks like the other airlines are looking at how they will carve it up.

Keith
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Feb 3rd, 2004, 07:26 AM
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Watch for its earnings announcement this Friday, but although I have been somewhat out of touch with general news in the last few weeks, I understand that a request for an extension of a loan was denied. They are getting rid of many of the regional jets (frankly, I'd like to see those things disappear altogether on flights longer than 45 min.) they just purchased. I think Keith is right, but waiting to see if AA traveler has any insights. Pittsburgh and Charlotte stand to lose bigtime if they reduce or "decompose" their system coverage.
 
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Feb 3rd, 2004, 08:15 AM
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I wish I had some 'inside' good news, but I don't. It does not look good for USAir. I hope they make it, but as I said before, once any business starts to sell off it's best assets just to pay the rent, how long can the company continue?

There is "warning" article in USA Today:

http://www.usatoday.com/travel/colum...ncatelli_x.htm
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Feb 3rd, 2004, 11:50 AM
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Glad we blew through 250,000 FF miles for first class trip last summer - something tells me we are going to have to eat the miles we have accumulated since then.
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Feb 3rd, 2004, 03:23 PM
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Gail,

I would not worry too much about the miles. Some other airline will pick them up, if history repeats itself. Maybe you will not get the FULL value, but I believe you'll be ok.

The viscious cycle starts with the people that actually buy tickets. If the news is bad, nobody wants to fly them, which in turn makes USAir fly their planes empty, thus making the situation more bleak, QUICKER.
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Feb 3rd, 2004, 03:34 PM
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I don't have a crystal ball, but having been in the travel business for 15 + years, they are not going anywhere. They may make cut backs in number of flights or even cut back on services, but they will keep flying. The government will ensure that. If you buy tickets, it is always safe to have some insurance. This will cover your costs in the event of a cancellation. Insurance is getting more popular again due to airline bankruptcys, etc.
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Feb 3rd, 2004, 04:16 PM
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Just remember that there were some "experts" on this board swearing that United was going to stop flying by February 2003. I guess it was another case of that "faulty intelligence" we hear so much about. So who really knows about USAir?
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Feb 3rd, 2004, 04:27 PM
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My gut feeling is that US Air will be absorbed into United, then United will sell off the excess equipment (Fokker 100s, Airbus 330s), start laying off US Air staff, selling off routes, landing slots, gates, etc., etc., etc. Anyone remember TWA? Eastern? PSA?

I don't think US Air can limp along much longer....
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Feb 3rd, 2004, 04:52 PM
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Don't forget, USAir Express is already for sale. That is a very profitable market. Washington, New York, Philadelphia, Boston. AA is the front runner for that deal at this time, but it could change. I don't wish USAir bad, but it's becoming more clear everyday that they are hurting to the max. The one post above saying that the government will bail them out is totally baseless. There are 5 other majors and 3-4 low fares airlines in existance that will be happy to take over the gates/routes from USAir, especially when they are being sold at very discounted prices. The government will ONLY step in if a portion of a country is denied air transportation. This is not the case here.
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Feb 4th, 2004, 07:43 AM
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MsWitty, remember TWA? PanAm? Eastern? I know only TWA was in operation within the 15 yrs. you've been working in travel, but some similar conditions caused the demise of all of these, and so I wouldn't necessarily say US Air is protected from crumbling. It might persist in name for a small segment of its current route system, but selling their most profitable operation seems to me a desperate move. Entirely plausible that most of it will be absorbed by United or else other regional airlines.

I'm thinking, in a very inexpert way, that the appearance of specialty-route, discount lines like Song and Ted to mimic JetBlue and SouthWest might be the wave of the future: --- we're maybe going to see "parent" airlines turn over some of their high-competition routes to their discount operations, leaving more minor routes to suffer ever higher fares and less frequent flights. Then god help second- and third-tier airport cities, who are already suffering the same fate as the huge number of now railroad-less cities.
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Feb 5th, 2004, 02:25 PM
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I think the idea of a government bailout is unrealistic. Bush Sr let two airlines go out of business on his watch (Pan Am and Eastern) I doubt the neo cons would move on UsAir. Course Papa Bush wasn't re elected either. Still, it is an election year and that's what a company of 20-30,000? If another airline buys the routes perhaps they'd honor tickets. At any rate the movers behind Usair still have a few cards to play. The Alabama group that invested heavily in it has more to gain if it is transformed into a success rather than selling it off piece by piece. I like the airline and fly it, I think that they have the nicest staff, I would not say that about United.
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Feb 7th, 2004, 09:16 AM
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Is it safe to go ahead and book on US Air for a spring trip? Should I book directly with US Air or Travelocity? The difference in fares is $10. I am thinking that if something happens Travelocity would be able to switch us to another airline.
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Feb 7th, 2004, 11:43 AM
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Cassandra
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But the question is, _would_ Travelocity rebook you? I don't think things will happen quite that fast, Buckeyemom, although I don't know -- they tend to keep the wraps on these things lest the lose what little remaining revenue they might be able to get in the last few weeks of operations.

cmcfong, I might worry a bit more about your flight. On the other hand, correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm guessing you are booked on a flight that's a codeshare with United. If so, United will probably still be flying their European routes and you'd be okay.
Suggest you book directly with US Air and perhaps spend the money for an old-fashioned paper ticket.
 
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Feb 7th, 2004, 11:45 AM
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Wow, did that get garbled in the post-edit-review process!

"lest theY lose...."

and the suggestion to get a paper ticket was intended for Buckeyemom, not cmcfong.
 
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Feb 7th, 2004, 04:32 PM
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Thanks, Cassandra. My flight is a USAIR to CDG. I don't know if it is codeshare with United.
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Feb 8th, 2004, 05:55 AM
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You can tell a lot just by looking on the US Air website -- query your own itinerary as if you hadn't already booked. What I found is that there are 2 nonstops to CDG from Phila that are listed as USAir flights, but if you go to the United website, the same two flights come up as operated by USAir, so that at least is a codeshare. Then there are a number of flights that USAir lists from ORD to CDG with a little "u" next to them that means it's a United flight. Don't know where your gateway city is, but you could go back to USAir and check (or even call and ask about your particular flight).

My guess is that any flights shared with United will not be in the first groups of flights to be canceled if US Air starts to decompose.

It's just a guess, though.
 
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Feb 8th, 2004, 08:34 AM
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Thanks, Cassandra. I will check the site as you suggest.
Keep your fingers crossed for us!
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