Brian Sumers

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Brian Sumers

Aviation Business Editor

Recent Stories from Brian Sumers:

Why American Airlines Is So Obsessed With On-Time Departures

Why American Airlines Is So Obsessed With On-Time Departures

Brian Sumers, Skift

Deep down, American Airlines President Robert Isom is an operations guy. We've rarely seen someone get so excited while talking about what it takes to make sure an airplane departs on time.

1 day ago

United Airlines Avoids Fuel Cost Hit to Earnings With Higher Ticket Prices

United Airlines Avoids Fuel Cost Hit to Earnings With Higher Ticket Prices

Brian Sumers, Skift

We told you United would probably turn things around on finances when it hired revenue whiz Scott Kirby back in August 2016. And look what's happening. Now, it's time for the airline to improve its customer service, too.

3 days ago

Delta Will Deploy Newest Jet to Go Directly at Competitors

Delta Will Deploy Newest Jet to Go Directly at Competitors

Brian Sumers, Skift

All U.S. airlines are performing well. Demand is robust, and while fuel prices are up, they're not that high compared to historical levels. Delta is using that state-of-play to go on the offensive to win more share from its competitors.

7 days ago

Delta Air Lines Sees Premium Profit

Delta Air Lines Sees Premium Profit

Brian Sumers, Skift

Travelers hoping for more free first-class upgrades should probably root for a recession. The economy is too strong for airlines to give away their best seats for free.

1 week ago

Why Air Baltic Staked Its Future on a Next-Generation Jet

Why Air Baltic Staked Its Future on a Next-Generation Jet

Brian Sumers, Skift

It's a shame the airline business is so dependent on scale. If it wasn't, we might have more airlines like Air Baltic. Despite being passenger-friendly and innovative, Air Baltic probably can't survive long-term as an independent entity.

1 week ago

Air Baltic Looks to JetBlue Founder David Neeleman for Guidance

Air Baltic Looks to JetBlue Founder David Neeleman for Guidance

Brian Sumers, Skift

Six years ago, Air Baltic took a chance on an airplane that few carriers wanted. Now, that decision has proven to be the right call. But Air Baltic can't remain independent forever, right?

2 weeks ago

Delta Is Betting on Tablet Technology to Solve In-Flight Entertainment Conundrum

Delta Is Betting on Tablet Technology to Solve In-Flight Entertainment Conundrum

Brian Sumers, Skift

Maybe Delta's new in-flight screens on its Airbus A220s will be better than previous generations. Or maybe they won't be. Either way, Delta deserves credit. Few of its competitors put screens on domestic airplanes anymore. Delta could have easily gone without them.

2 weeks ago

American Makes It Harder for Agents to Rebook Coach Passengers on the Competition

American Makes It Harder for Agents to Rebook Coach Passengers on the Competition

Brian Sumers, Skift

It's reasonable to ask whether airline re-accommodation agreements still make sense in 2018. In how many industries will one company happily hand you over to the competition after a slight service hiccup? But road warriors love these deals. It means they can get home, or to an important meeting, even when their favorite airline screws up.

2 weeks ago

JetBlue Lays Out a Growth Plan by Doubling Down on 3 U.S. Cities

JetBlue Lays Out a Growth Plan by Doubling Down on 3 U.S. Cities

Brian Sumers, Skift

United President Scott Kirby likes to say that if an airline is not first in market share in a market, it's as good as being last. JetBlue executives likely don't agree. They generally argue that JetBlue, America's sixth-largest carrier, is big enough to compete with more established competitors.

2 weeks ago

Why Hermès Makes It Tough to Find Its Products

Why Hermès Makes It Tough to Find Its Products

Brian Sumers, Skift

Is there a brand out there with more cachet in the luxury world than Hermès? There's a reason for it. The company manages expansion and inventory in a prudent way.

3 weeks ago

Yet Another Reminder on Why Airline Competition Is a Beautiful Thing

Yet Another Reminder on Why Airline Competition Is a Beautiful Thing

Brian Sumers, Skift

Frontier is far from the most perfect U.S. airline. It gets more than its share of complaints, and its on-time rate is worse than the U.S. average. But the airline is making some improvements to try to keep passengers from defecting to legacy carriers. That's good for consumers.

3 weeks ago

Discount Airlines Take Frequent Flyer Programs More Seriously After Initial Snub

Discount Airlines Take Frequent Flyer Programs More Seriously After Initial Snub

Brian Sumers, Skift

Not long ago, all discount airlines needed to compete was cheap fares. But times change, and with legacy airlines poaching some of their customers, more ultra-low-cost carriers are taking loyalty seriously.

3 weeks ago