What to Know Now
Today’s Skift Business Traveler comes from a delayed United flight bound for Houston, the sad result of a brief computer outage on Wednesday morning. Though operations at United were back to normal by late morning, delays trickled down through the system like a virus, resulting in hundreds of delays system wide.
With or without computer glitches, operations in the airline industry are always a headache — and yet each of the major legacies still has hurdles ahead. Via Johnny Jet, American and US Airways are starting to integrate their reservation systems this month, a process so tumultuous that United is still licking its wounds from the Continental merger. Delta, for its part, can’t be more proud of its barely competitive phone system and United, well, had yesterday.
Suffice it to say that for all of our technical improvements in the industry there are still days where I wish for an analog way of life.
Social Quote of the Day
[email protected] did you guys try turning your planes off and on again?
Two New Lawsuits Against U.S. Airlines Echo Collusion Complaint: The four biggest U.S. airlines were sued by travelers claiming the carriers are conspiring to keep ticket prices high in the face of falling fuel prices. Read more at Skift
United Strikes Deal With Cowshed Spa for Better Airborne Amenities: United has introduced its latest amenity kit this year, featuring all-natural Cowshed beauty products. To celebrate, the airline is offering its MileagePlus members a chance to bid on a rejuvenating getaway. Read more at Skift
Could Airbus’ Bizarre New Double Decker Be the Plane of the Future? A new patent filed by Airbus has us wondering: Is this new plane a bird, a whale, or a mammoth? Read more at Skift
5 Things That the TSA Can Improve With New Leadership: The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has officially installed Vice Admiral Peter Neffenger as its chief, following a half-year of missteps and middling leadership. Read more at Skift
Europe Is Leading the Slow Process Towards Greener Airports: U.S. airports have a lot of ground to make up if they want to compete with the 92 European airports certified for working towards or already having reduced their carbon emissions. Read more at Skift
Heads Up: Denver International Airport Launches Its Own TV Channel: A new distraction has arrived at Denver International Airport, so if you find yourself waiting for a flight with a dead smartphone battery, cheer up: Here’s something that will occupy your interest while you’re in a social media blackout. (Shudder.) Read more at Jaunted
All United Flights in the U.S. Grounded Due to Computer Malfunction: United said Wednesday that it is working to resolve the problems, which are related to “network connectivity.” Read more at Skift
Virgin America’s Pick for In-Flight Wi-Fi Signals a Change for Passenger Experience: There’s little going on in the skies quite as entertaining as the battle to bring you better, faster, stronger Wi-Fi. Read more at Skift
Future of Local Discovery is in the Car’s Dashboard: Cars in the next few years will be able to find the fastest route for the morning commute as well as order coffee, pay for it and guide the driver to pick it up. Read more at Skift
Google Expands Its Waze Maps to Carpooling Tool in Tel Aviv: Google Inc. wants to simplify the process of carpooling with a new application for its Waze traffic service. Read more at Skift
More Content, More Games, and More Advertising Coming to In-Flight Entertainment: Following a growing trend to improve the variety of in-flight entertainment offerings available in-flight, Global Eagle Entertainment (GEE) is expanding its portfolio of services adding content, games, and opportunities for creative advertising platforms. Read more at Skift
Why Big Hotel Brands Need to Act More Like Airbnb: The big hotel brands can do a lot more to elevate the whole “local” trend by recommending apps and web-based platforms that guide guests to local neighborhoods, just like Airbnb hosts do. Read more at Skift
Stronger Dollar Gives U.S. Business Travelers More Foreign Travel Opportunities: As U.S. domestic business travel continues its ascent towards pre-recession levels, the forecast for international outbound business travel reflects even stronger growth. Read more at Skift
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Can be sent to gm[at]skift[dot]com or to @grantkmartin