What to Know Now
Last Friday’s plan to announce the new gate owners in Love Field outside of Dallas went sideways, with multiple news agencies reporting that Virgin America won permission and others posting conflicting news. The city finally postponed the decision until early this week to the disgust of all parties involved.
Murky waters are ahead in the battle for transparency in our airline pricing. You’ll recall that several weeks back the House introduced legislation (largely prodded by the airline lobbies) to roll back recent rules written for displaying airline prices. Effectively, that rollback would allow airlines to advertise prices (say on Orbitz or Kayak) without taxes or mandatory fees — much like hotels are displayed.
But the Senate is now trying to enact further legislation to make sure that the House doesn’t get its way. The Real Transparency in Airfares Act, as detailed by Chris Elliott at USA Today, aims to prevent opaque airfare pricing and furthermore increase the fine for infractions.
None of this matters, of course, if you’re smart enough to click through the advertised fares and compare the final costs, but the very fact the the airlines are trying to circumvent the rules leaves a sour taste in my mouth. Let’s hope the Senate gets its way.
social quote of the day
Intro’ing “Real Transparency in Airfares Act” to help get true ticket costs from airlines. Let’s level the playing field for consumers!
How Long Can Singapore Airlines Continue to be a Holdout on Premium Economy? For years, Singapore Airlines (SIA) said “no” to a premium economy class. It did not matter that a growing number of carriers had started offering the service to customers willing to pay a higher price than an economy fare for a more comfortable flight. SIA’s top brass had good reasons to stick to its guns. Read more at Skift
AirTran Loyalty Program Members to Transition to More Complicated and Costly Southwest Program: The AirTran Airways frequent-flier program will end in November and be folded into Southwest’s Rapid Rewards plan. Read more at Skift
5 New Trends That Are Reshaping Luxury Flights: With a number of premium travel companies introducing innovative in-flight experiences, frequent fliers could soon find the journey to their destination as memorable and special as the time they spend there. Read more at Skift
Qantas Edges Closer to Selling Its Frequent Flyer Program: Qantas Airways Ltd., the Australian airline that’s cutting 5,000 jobs in an attempt to reduce costs by A$2 billion ($1.9 billion), is weighing whether to sell a stake in its Frequent Flyer loyalty business. Read more at Skift
How Duty-Free Booze Business Is Helping Make Air Travel Easier: Never let it be said that aviation will not go to great lengths to ensure the safety and security of passengers and their duty-free purchases. Read more at Skift
TSA’s New ‘Randomizer’ Will Put Lucky Travelers in Shorter PreCheck Lines: At your next trip to the airport, look out for the Transportation Security Administration’s new app: the “Randomizer.” Read more at Skift
Construction Stops at Sao Paulo Airport Because of Unsafe Conditions: Work on an airport outside Sao Paulo was partially suspended on Friday because of unsafe working conditions in the rush to prepare for the World Cup, all but guaranteeing the private operator would miss a crucial deadline for a new terminal. Read more at Skift
First Car-Sharing, Now Driveway-Sharing Apps Becoming City Parking Alternative:
SpotOn says it is different from apps that help drivers find spots on the street or in garages because it is trying to increase the supply of parking in the city. Read more at Skift
The Man Seeking $2 Million on Kickstarter to Find Amelia Earhart’s Plane: Dana Timmer believes the famous wreck is 18,000 feet below the Pacific. Read more at The Verge
Satellite Operator to Offer Free Real-Time Airline Tracking: Communications satellite operator Inmarsat Plc will offer free tracking to all commercial passenger jets linked to its network in response to the disappearance of Malaysian Air Flight 370 over the Indian Ocean. Read more at Skift
Fairfield Inn Uses Career Advice to Draw Millennial Guests: Fairfield Inn & Suites is launching a new brand campaign today called Everyday Connect, themed around the value of mentorships for young professionals. Read more at Skift
Hilton Nearly Quadruples Q1 Profit on Strong Business Travel: Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc‘s quarterly profit nearly quadrupled as increased business and leisure travel drove up occupancy and room rates. Read more at Skift
Hilton CEO Reaffirms Commitment to Launch Lifestyle Brand in 2014: Hilton Worldwide sees an opportunity in going where its competitors allegedly fear to tread — namely, the launch of an “accessible lifestyle” brand that would attract guests for stays at lower price points than the likes of Marriott’s Edition Hotels, Hyatt’s Andaz, and Hyatt’s Element and Aloft. Read more at Skift
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Photo credit: An advertisement from Spirit Air, which is fighting to drop requirements that it advertises the actual fare. Spirit Airlines / Spirit Airlines