The St. Louis Fare Pinch

WingNaPrayer

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Some passengers feel pinch from American fares from St. Louis


ST. LOUIS (AP) —
Charles Montgomery recently priced a last-minute round trip to Chicago. American Airline's fare was $250 from St. Louis; at the Southwest Airlines counter, the walk-up fare was $80.

He said Southwest's seating was tighter for passengers. "But I'll grin and bear it instead of flying American."

Passengers, travel agents and industry watchers said some St. Louis travelers were paying more to fly American Airlines since Nov. 1, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported in a Sunday story.

That's when American, after gradually cutting back in the city over the last two years, began a major reduction in jobs and flights as part of an effort to reduce annual costs by $4 billion.

The airline began flying to 68 destinations instead of 95 from St. Louis. Three-fourths of American flights from Lambert are now AmericanConnections, which will use smaller regional jets. Travelers are seeing more layovers after nonstop service to 27 cities was cut.

Kevin Kelley used to fly American Airlines round trip from Indianapolis to St. Louis with a ticket as low as $99. These days, he says the same walk-up fare on the airline is as high as $650.

Some of American's cheapest fares from St. Louis to New York, Boston and Washington have increased by $200.

"Get used to it," said fares expert Terry Trippler of Cheapseats.com. "The glory days of that huge hub in St. Louis are over. You're going to be changing planes more often, have fewer choices and higher fares."

American Airlines spokeswoman Mary Frances Fagan said the airline has adjusted pricing, but that doesn't necessarily mean a price increase.

American eliminated its lowest fares to nine of the 68 cities where the airline or its regional affiliates have St. Louis connections. The company didn't identify all the cities.

Fort Worth-based AMR Corp., American Airlines' parent company, is working to make St. Louis flights profitable.

But some travelers are feeling the changes. Before Nov. 1, the lowest 14-day advance fare from St. Louis to Boston not requiring a Saturday stay was $260.

Last week, American's lowest comparable fare was $474.

"We didn't raise the fare," Fagan said. "We just took away the lowest fare."

Trippler said airlines can raise prices by changing the number of seats available at cheaper fares. "If you sell shoes, and sell some for $19.99 and some for $29.99, if you run out of $19.99, people are paying more for what's left."

Industry experts said more telling than posted fares are the average fares that people have actually paid. American won't disclose the average fares customers pay on routes, saying it is proprietary.
 
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WingNaPrayer

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Basically, this story is one sided, and somewhat unfair. There is no doubt in my mind that AAs removal of so many flights from STL has provided other carriers with the opportunity to practice a little supply and demand pricing with their fares as well.
 

KCFlyer

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WingNaPrayer said:
Basically, this story is one sided, and somewhat unfair. There is no doubt in my mind that AAs removal of so many flights from STL has provided other carriers with the opportunity to practice a little supply and demand pricing with their fares as well.
Not really - AA pulled the MCI-STL routes, leaving SWA with the monopoly as the only nonstop service between the two cities. Southwest's fully refundable fare is still $170 round trip.
 

LiveInAHotel

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Let's face it...Do you actually think AA/AMR was going to hang onto STL? It's sad to say but, it seems they never had any intentions on keeping the TWA employees, aircraft or STL. This is how AMR operates and everyone knows it. Just look at what happened after AA/AMR took over AirCal and Reno.
 

FWAAA

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LiveInAHotel said:
Let's face it...Do you actually think AA/AMR was going to hang onto STL? It's sad to say but, it seems they never had any intentions on keeping the TWA employees, aircraft or STL. This is how AMR operates and everyone knows it. Just look at what happened after AA/AMR took over AirCal and Reno.
Yep. You're right. Just because it happened is conclusive proof that it was AA's plan all along.

By that logic, AA actually planned all the disasters (financial or otherwise) that happened to AA over the years, right? Does that advance planning also extend to catastrophic airplane losses as well? Or are there any bad things that happened to AA that weren't planned by AA?

Bad weather causes AA to cancel lots of flights. "Management planned it all along."

Plane crashes. "Management's plan all along."

AA loses billions of dollars. "All in keeping with management's plan."

AA purchases an airline to keep up with UAL. Within same year, AA tragically loses three airplanes, two to muslim terror attacks on one single day. UAL also loses two airplanes to the terrorists that same day. Economy tanks. AA loses billions before even asking for employee givebacks. AA forced to downsize in STL. "Management planned it all along."

Good grief.
 
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WingNaPrayer

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FWAAA said:
AA purchases an airline to keep up with UAL. Within same year, AA tragically loses three airplanes, two to muslim terror attacks on one single day. UAL also loses two airplanes to the terrorists that same day. Economy tanks. AA loses billions before even asking for employee givebacks. AA forced to downsize in STL. "Management planned it all along."
I don't doubt it was planned either. It's just that other factors caused it to happen quicker than AA originally planned, or could make up an excuse for. Big whoop! The little guy gets gobbled up all the time.

Survival of the fittest, and TWA was nowhere near fit, they were in bad shape! Had anyone else scooped them up, the same industry-wide losses would have befallen them as well, and TWA would still be gone. I don't think there is any corporate airline out there that would give up itself just to save TWA.

TWA had a good long life, the funeral is over!
 

AAmech

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LiveInAHotel said:
Let's face it...Do you actually think AA/AMR was going to hang onto STL? It's sad to say but, it seems they never had any intentions on keeping the TWA employees, aircraft or STL. This is how AMR operates and everyone knows it. Just look at what happened after AA/AMR took over AirCal and Reno.
Go ahead, stay in Denial! Sometimes life is easier to face that way. Did you ever ask yourself why AA pumped millions of $$$ into STL renovations, computer switchover, signage, stripping and painting aircraft and so on, and on and on....
Why didn't they just shut TWA down from the begining and save themselfs a TON of cash? Give the conspiracy theories a break PLEASE!
 

Garfield1966

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Wing, if you’re going to post this crap, at least get your facts straight. I did a little research and this is what I found.

South West offers a Full Y at $90.00 one way.

ORG-STL DST-CHI TRIP-OUTBOUND CXR-WN 26NOV03 USD
THE FOLLOWING CARRIERS ALSO PUBLISH FARES STL-CHI:
AA AS CO TW UA US
7.5 PERCENT TAXES INCLUDED-USE FT FOR BREAKDOWN-SEE N*/USTAX1
SEGMENT TAXES NOT INCLUDED SEE N*/USTAX2
PSGR FACILITY CHARGES MAY APPLY-ENTER PXCHELP
ALL FEES/SVC CHARGES NOT INCLUDED UNTIL ITINERARY PRICED
SURCHARGE FOR PAPER TICKET MAY BE ADDED WHEN ITINERARY PRICED
QTE F/B BK FARE EFF EXP TKT AP MIN/MAX RTG
1 - YL Y X 90.00 - - - - -/ - 5
2 - Q7NR Q R 152.00 - - - ‡‡ 1/ - 5
3 - H14RNR H R 112.00 - - - ‡‡ 1/ - 5
4 - B7NR B R 166.00 - - - ‡‡ 1/ - 5
5 TRAVEL MUST BE NONSTOP

AA Fares … Gee, we also offer a walk up fare of $90.00 (yes it is in Q). We have no fare to match their $112.00 fare but we do have a 21 day advance fare for .. OH MY $49.00 one way.

FQSTLORD26NOV-AA«
ORG-STL DST-CHI TRIP-OUTBOUND CXR-AA 26NOV03 USD
THE FOLLOWING CARRIERS ALSO PUBLISH FARES STL-CHI:
AS CO TW UA US WN
7.5 PERCENT TAXES INCLUDED-USE FT FOR BREAKDOWN-SEE N*/USTAX1
SEGMENT TAXES NOT INCLUDED SEE N*/USTAX2
PSGR FACILITY CHARGES MAY APPLY-ENTER PXCHELP
ALL FEES/SVC CHARGES NOT INCLUDED UNTIL ITINERARY PRICED
SURCHARGE FOR PAPER TICKET MAY BE ADDED WHEN ITINERARY PRICED
QTE F/B BK FARE EFF EXP TKT AP MIN/MAX RTG

11 - QE7D1N Q R 166.00 - - - ‡‡ 1/ - 1
12 - Q26D Q X 90.00 - - - - -/ - 1
27 - LA21AA3N L X 49.00 - 02AP* - ‡‡ -/ - 501
28 - LA21AA4N L X 49.00 - 02AP* - ‡‡ -/ - 501


(the FQ was shortened, we have over 28 fares and I saw no point on posting them all)


As for the loads, I went through a few flights from yesterday and a few today and they seemed to go out with between 60-70 people plus or minus a few. Given the fact that all the remaining flights today have /Q/ available and the flights coming back tomorrow and the next day do also, I would say that the article is STL NEWPAPER BS!!!!!!

Fares as high as $650.00. Yes Kevin, if the flight is sold out and you really want to get there, that’s what it will cost you. I would be very surprised if it happens often, if at all.

As for the STL-BOS, not sure what was last week (don’t remember the format for a past date FQ) but I looked for the 14 Dec and found a $278.00 rt fare.


Don’t you just hate it when facts get in the way?
 
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WingNaPrayer

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Garfield1966 said:
Wing, if you’re going to post this crap, at least get your facts straight.
They're not my facts buddy! That posting is an AP newswire story.

Don’t you just hate it when facts get in the way?

I don't. Why don't you try emailing your diatribe to the reporter who actually wrote the story and see if he cares about your false accusations either?

If you're looking for someone to snipe at because they are writing stories about your favorite employer, why not snipe AT your employer. I mean, after all, they are the ones creating all the fodder that seems to keep getting them in hot water in the press!
 

FibberMcGee

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Wing,


What's your real motive for bringing this topic up? In a previous topic you asked why everything has to degrade into a TWA/AA debate. What is your real beef with us former TWA people anyway? We're mostly gone so your just thowing salt in the wound. It doesn't show much in the way of character on your part.
Just wondering. Fibber
 

Garfield1966

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The reason is simple. You posted it as a way to snipe at AA, (as you always do). You did not verify the veracity of the article. Your history seems to indicate that you just post for the sake of posting and stirring trouble. And the fact that I enjoy pulling the curtains open for all to see the little man pulling the strings was a pleasant little benefit as well.

Since when is AA my favorite employer? They are my only employer and therefore I have an interest in seeing that they survive. I will do what ever I feel is necessary to protect my interests. My salary and benefits have been cut dramatically and due to the fact that we have no representation, we will be the last to see any type of increase till all the other work groups have taken their cut. So, no they are definitely not my favorite, but in this economic environment, I see few other options.
 
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WingNaPrayer

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Garfield1966 said:
You posted it as a way to snipe at AA
AA had it coming

You did not verify the veracity of the article.

It's an Associated Press article. That's not for me to do, nor is it up to you to don your cape in search of glory in front of all and shoot the messenger. Aren't you the self-imposed hero! You're perfect at AA because just like corporate, when things don't go right, they blame labor and take concessions. When things do go right, labor never figures into the picture and they give themselves raises and fatten their golden parachutes.

If you have a beef with this article, take it up with the AP. In typical AA fashion, you've been trained to blame someone else . . . never go to the source and fix it.
 

FibberMcGee

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WingNaPrayer said:
AA had it coming



It's an Associated Press article. That's not for me to do, nor is it up to you to don your cape in search of glory in front of all and shoot the messenger. Aren't you the self-imposed hero! You're perfect at AA because just like corporate, when things don't go right, they blame labor and take concessions. When things do go right, labor never figures into the picture and they give themselves raises and fatten their golden parachutes.

If you have a beef with this article, take it up with the AP. In typical AA fashion, you've been trained to blame someone else . . . never go to the source and fix it.
I noticed you didn't repond to my entry...
 

JFK777

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TWA didn't make a profit because it didn't charge enough, flying MD-80's every place it could. AA makes aprofit. Twa was operated like a public utility with civil servants, AA is a profit making enterprise. AA has the money for investments in 777 and other capital improvements.