Reality Check!!!

texflyer

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Feb 26, 2003
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There is much arguing here on how to save AA. I wander if both sides have stand back and checked the big picture. This time period is NOT like it was in the early 80s with the influx of lowfare carriers. The customer at large,even the former Y fare customer has chosen not to spend more than x amount of dollars on a ticket.
Just as the car makers have made the consumer savvy enough to wait for rebates before car buying. The air carriers has a generation of travelers who WILL NOT pay....say.....more than $250 roundtrip from DFW-LAX. They will wait for the fare sales,go to the internet sites,and use up their miles they accumulated through their credit cards. I guess what I am trying to say is that we THINK and SPEND differently now. If I worked for a major airline in management that trend would scare me.
This would explain the rise of the low to mid cost carriers. The new low-mid carriers have been patient(unlike their predecessors that grew too fast),and its paying off for them. I think AA is in a good position,UA,and US bankruptcys have brought a BIG reality check to both sides. It is a shame Crandall is not running AA,he ran it with discipline,and for lack of a better word a tight wad. Carty is not,which is strange since he was a protege of Crandall.
 
Mar 3, 2003
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texflyer, The question is: Why should the Employees of the Airline Industry be expected to subsidze the low fairs of the general public?
 

Winglet

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The primary problem in this industry is one of SUPPLY. Right now, there is a gross amount of over capacity which drives prices LOW. Even if EVERY carrier in this country had LLC costs, we'd STILL be losing money.

Mr. Bush doesn't seem to want to understand basic economics, but judging by his sweatheart tax deal for his rich buds, he does know who his friends are.

Let's see, I've lost 40% of my net worth in the stock market and am about to lose my job, since Republican control of the legislature and executive.

The Democrats are disingenuous cowards and the Republicans are economic incompetents . . . what a choice.
 

FrugalFlyer

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Aug 20, 2002
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[blockquote]
----------------
On 3/15/2003 10:47:25 AM KC tirechanger wrote:
texflyer, The question is: Why should the Employees of the Airline Industry be expected to subsidze the low fairs of the general public?
----------------
[/blockquote]

How about this question: Why should customers be expected to subsidize the high wages of the employees of the airlines?
Or, if the question is too harsh then instead I ask: Why should customers be expected to subsidize the mistakes of airline management?

Its a 2 way street.

Right now airlines / employees are feeling they are being taken advantage of by their customers of all people, yet during the good years no airline employee (group of employees or managers) said anything about the customers being taken advantage of.
 

FrugalFlyer

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Aug 20, 2002
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[blockquote]
----------------
On 3/15/2003 3:47:53 PM RV4 wrote:
There are great sales on import cars right now with low interest rates. You can purchase one plus a tank of gas and be very "frugal" with your traveling.
----------------
[/blockquote]

Been there, done that (Ford, 0%, 48 months).
 

acmech

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Aug 20, 2002
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With this new reality check for both the airlines and employees, I for one am glad that I do not work for the airlines anymore. At first, I was highly angry at the airline that I worked for as an aircraft mechanic for laying me off, in this case, it was TWA/American back in october 2001. Me along with 1000's of other employees were thrown to the street. I finally found a new job that pays just as well as the airlines once did. I am able to use those skills acquired through the work I did as a mechanic for the airline and from A&P school in another industry altogether.

Bottom line: it is a new reality, I have a new career, and it is the airlines' loss that they laid off so many experienced people. By the time the airline industry does pick up again, those people that they laid off will not likly return because they went off somewhere else to start over. Like I said, it is the airlines loss, not mine.
 

RV4

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Aug 20, 2002
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[blockquote]
----------------
On 3/15/2003 3:28:49 PM FrugalFlyer wrote:

How about this question: Why should customers be expected to subsidize the high wages of the employees of the airlines?
----------------
[/blockquote]


There are great sales on import cars right now with low interest rates. You can purchase one plus a tank of gas and be very "frugal" with your traveling.
 

j7915

Senior
Sep 7, 2002
423
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[blockquote]----------------On 3/15/2003 3:28:49 PM FrugalFlyer wrote: [blockquote]
----------------
On 3/15/2003 10:47:25 AM KC tirechanger wrote:
texflyer, The question is: Why should the Employees of the Airline Industry be expected to subsidze the low fairs of the general public?
----------------
[/blockquote]

How about this question: Why should customers be expected to subsidize the high wages of the employees of the airlines?
Or, if the question is too harsh then instead I ask: Why should customers be expected to subsidize the mistakes of airline management?

Its a 2 way street.

Right now airlines / employees are feeling they are being taken advantage of by their customers of all people, yet during the good years no airline employee (group of employees or managers) said anything about the customers being taken advantage of.
----------------[/blockquote]

The customer does not have to subsidize the "high" wages, (high compared to what? A plumber on a weekend?), of airline employees. They should also not be surprised when the world's travel will be carried by foreign carriers. SWA does not even go to Puerto Rico, which one would think would be a lucrative market for a mass transit system of the air.

A comprehensive travel system will like the telephone and the postal system, and the highway system carry with it the build-in costs of cross subsidizing of routes.

If you don't want a comprehensive transportation system, then by all means start thinking about that cheap important and miles and miles of roads.

The fact is that the airlines have not for many years charged for the value of time, which is supposed to be so precious to the road warriors.
 

Bob Owens

Veteran
Sep 9, 2002
14,274
6,112
[blockquote]
----------------
On 3/15/2003 3:28:49 PM FrugalFlyer wrote:

[blockquote]
----------------
On 3/15/2003 10:47:25 AM KC tirechanger wrote:
texflyer, The question is: Why should the Employees of the Airline Industry be expected to subsidze the low fairs of the general public?
----------------
[/blockquote]

How about this question: Why should customers be expected to subsidize the high wages of the employees of the airlines?
Or, if the question is too harsh then instead I ask: Why should customers be expected to subsidize the mistakes of airline management?

Its a 2 way street.

Right now airlines / employees are feeling they are being taken advantage of by their customers of all people, yet during the good years no airline employee (group of employees or managers) said anything about the customers being taken advantage of.

----------------
[/blockquote]

What do you consider "High Wages"?
How much should a pilot who has a limited career (age 60 mandatory retirement, strict physicals) and a long progression after a high investment in training make?

How much should an aircraft mechanic who also has made a substantial investment,possese highly marketable skills, carrys immense responsibilties, works in extreme conditions, odd hours including holidays, weekends and round the clock shifts earn?

What do you do and what do you earn for it? What special qualifications are needed, liabilities attached, and personal sacrifices go with the job?
 

RV4

Veteran
Aug 20, 2002
1,885
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[blockquote]
----------------
On 3/15/2003 4:24:20 PM FrugalFlyer wrote:

Been there, done that (Ford, 0%, 48 months).

----------------
[/blockquote]

Take that Ford in for some mechanic and work and tell me aircraft mechanics are over paid!
 

Bob Owens

Veteran
Sep 9, 2002
14,274
6,112
[blockquote]
----------------
On 3/15/2003 3:28:49 PM FrugalFlyer wrote:

[blockquote]
----------------
On 3/15/2003 10:47:25 AM KC tirechanger wrote:
texflyer, The question is: Why should the Employees of the Airline Industry be expected to subsidze the low fairs of the general public?
----------------
[/blockquote]

How about this question: Why should customers be expected to subsidize the high wages of the employees of the airlines?
Or, if the question is too harsh then instead I ask: Why should customers be expected to subsidize the mistakes of airline management?

Its a 2 way street.

Right now airlines / employees are feeling they are being taken advantage of by their customers of all people, yet during the good years no airline employee (group of employees or managers) said anything about the customers being taken advantage of.

----------------
[/blockquote]
The question is what is a fair price to charge to transport people hundreds or thousands of miles? Time is money and if flying saves you, depending upon where you are going,hours, days, or even weeks, shouldnt that be taken into consideration? If you factor in the gas, tolls and time for your Ford and compare it to flying, I think that you have to admit that flying is a good deal, especially to Hawaii or Europe!
As far as customers being taken advantage of, usually it was last minute flyers that were taken advantage of in that they in effect were subsidizing those who paid low fares.
 

FrugalFlyer

Senior
Aug 20, 2002
254
0
[blockquote]
----------------
On 3/15/2003 6:21:50 PM RV4 wrote:
Take that Ford in for some mechanic and work and tell me aircraft mechanics are over paid!
----------------
[/blockquote]

I'm actually hoping that "At Ford, QUALITY is job #1" is more that an advertising slogan/jingle.
 

FrugalFlyer

Senior
Aug 20, 2002
254
0
[blockquote]
----------------
On 3/15/2003 6:45:19 PM Bob Owens wrote:
What do you consider "High Wages"?
How much should a pilot who has a limited career (age 60 mandatory retirement, strict physicals) and a long progression after a high investment in training make?

How much should an aircraft mechanic who also has made a substantial investment,possese highly marketable skills, carrys immense responsibilties, works in extreme conditions, odd hours including holidays, weekends and round the clock shifts earn?

What do you do and what do you earn for it? What special qualifications are needed, liabilities attached, and personal sacrifices go with the job?

----------------
[/blockquote]

Hi Bob,

Originally, kc tirechanger stated (asked) - "Why should the Employees of the Airline Industry be expected to subsidze the low fairs of the general public?" - to which I replied that I don't think (I disagree) that airline employees are subsidizing the low fares of the general public.

My point was that for every arguement that people make about airline workers subsidizing the fares, one can make the arguement that the folks that fly subsidize the wages of airline employees.

Granted right now, airines and airline employees are suffering financially (perhaps some employees even emotionally). But, go back a few years, say 1995-2000, the situation was quite different - I don't recall airline employees saying 'woe is me' like I do now. In fact, I'll venture to say that the customers were subsidizing the airlines AND their employees quite nicely.

Do I think $99 fares are fair? No, but I will certainly take advantage of them if they are offerred (as my name suggests ) I'm no economist, but I'm sure airlines won't cover costs at prices like that. However, the crying 'woe is me' by airline employees gets annoying - at least to me and probably to quite a number of other people as well. Heck, at least they have a job. I know it's easier to say than to do, but if one thinks their job stinks then quit or do something to improve your situation, take control of your life!

What are high wages? I guess if you have clothing, shelter and can place food on the table you are sufficiently paid. But by that logic there are way too many people that have high wages (overpaid). But I digress.

Airline employees have my utmost respect, all the way from the baggage handlers to the pilots and everyone in between. The USA air transportation system is the best in the world no question about it. But please don't cry "woe is me, I'm subsidizing your cheap airfare", because it's a 2 way street - that is my airfare is subsidizing your wages. Geez, customers, even frugal ones like me are not your enemies.

As to who I am / what I do: I'm working on my PhD. Career goal is to have a job in medical research. I already have a BSc as well as a MSc and could get a decent job in research, but not as a primary investigator. Liabilities / sacrifices are that I'm still in school whereas friends from high school and undergrad have well paying jobs by now. Advantages: I enjoy what I am doing, I want to do what I am doing and I know that it in a few years it will lead to a great and exciting career.
 
Mar 3, 2003
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0
Futgalflyer, Did you happen to read acmech's post? Two years ago, American Airlines, and all the Airlines were offering bonus's to anyone how would recruit a licenced A&Ps! In the next five years, the majority of these same mechanics working on your aircraft today will be retiring, or following acmech into other feilds! Do you have any idea what it takes to become an Aicraft Mechanic? I'm sure you don't! And frankly you probably don't care! So with an economic environment we have today, where do you think they'll get people to replace them, and fix, or fly your Aircraft???? I know, I know!!! China!!!! God help us!!!!!
 
OP
T

texflyer

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Feb 26, 2003
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My point was as a customer,I am used to paying low fares,fares that were the same when Crandall debut the "SuperSaver" slogan. Everything else has gone up in price in conjunction with inflation,except airfares.

I am not sure taking seats out of the market will help. As soon as one major does,you can bet a low cost carrier or another major will fill in the slack. I do not believe the airlines will see the yields of the past. SWA has achieved a critical mass that has effected every major,there is no place to "hide"(ie. northeast) anymore.

If UA does shrink considerably,expect the capacity to be replaced. I would expect that capacity to be replaced by a low cost carrier,and that will make the matter only worst.

I hope you employees out there keep your wages. I do not think you are overpaid. I beleive though we are seeing a shift in airline economics as big as deregulation,and that is a two tier airline system in this country. Half of the seats will be full fare airlines,and the other half low fare airlines,with the wages to match.
 

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