Thursday, June 26, 2008

Will the airlines leave you stranded?

I keep reading more and more about airlines grounding planes and cutting staff. That has almost become old news.

Now, along with these cutbacks, comes elimination of flights. And not just cutting daily flights to/from a city from 10 to 6. Some cities are losing total service from an airline.

For instance, American Airlines just announced that it is cutting out, totally, service to six cities. My city is not one of them but I'm afraid, down the road it will be. All we have now from American is American Eagle service to Chicago or Dallas.

United is pulling out of Ft. Lauderdale and West Palm Beach. Plus it is also dropping some international legs, as is American.

What is particularly disturbing is reading how flights are being eliminated at hubs. If the airlines can't bring traffic into their hubs, then that is really bad news.

I have to make some flight arrangements for a trip a couple of months down the road. What airline do I choose? An airline that might be downsizing from my city? An airline that might disappear as it merges with another? There have been times I felt comfortable making flight arrangements 10 months into the future. Not any more.

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