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Brian Sumers

Aviation Business Editor

Recent Stories from Brian Sumers:

Let’s Not Get Carried Away With New Airport Security Procedures

Let’s Not Get Carried Away With New Airport Security Procedures

Brian Sumers, Skift

Last week's stolen plane tragedy in Seattle made for great television. It also scared some travelers. But let's call it what it was: a fluke.

3 days ago

U.S. Airlines Report Sky-High Profit From Frequent Flyer Programs

U.S. Airlines Report Sky-High Profit From Frequent Flyer Programs

Brian Sumers, Skift

This analyst has a point. Perhaps Wall Street is undervaluing airlines because investors don't know the full value of airline frequent flyer programs. But it's not clear anything will change.

6 days ago

Copa Airlines’ Rebound May Depend on a Latin American Turnaround

Copa Airlines’ Rebound May Depend on a Latin American Turnaround

Brian Sumers, Skift

Someday Latin American economies will boom again, and the region's airlines will be big investor favorites. But until then, investors may remain wary of companies like Panama's Copa Airlines.

6 days ago

Don’t Expect Greater Airport Security After Alaska Air Crash

Don’t Expect Greater Airport Security After Alaska Air Crash

Brian Sumers, Skift

Security is all about tolerances. Yes, there's probably a way to ensure that no airline employee ever steals an airplane again. But it's probably not worth instituting such procedures. This was more likely a tragic fluke than anything.

7 days ago

Video: Why Travelers Don’t Trust Airlines on Personalization

Video: Why Travelers Don’t Trust Airlines on Personalization

Brian Sumers, Skift

Some sophisticated travelers like it when airlines embrace sophisticated personalization strategies, particularly when it means an airline will make a reasonably priced offer for something the customer values, such as an upgrade or a change to an earlier flight. But more casual travelers might find it intrusive. Regardless, personalization likely is here to stay.

1 week ago

Why Did Qantas Hire a Jet Lag Expert?

Why Did Qantas Hire a Jet Lag Expert?

Brian Sumers, Skift

Few airlines take marketing and public relations as seriously as Qantas. The airline should be commended for its efforts to persuade passengers they want to spend 17 hours on a plane, when they have other options.

1 week ago

Aimia Refuses to Sell Aeroplan Frequent Flyer Program Back to Air Canada

Aimia Refuses to Sell Aeroplan Frequent Flyer Program Back to Air Canada

Brian Sumers, Skift

It always seemed unlikely Aimia would accept this offer for the Aeroplan program. But this is bad news for Air Canada frequent flyers who have spent decades building their frequent flyer accounts. If nothing changes, they won't be able to use their miles as they expected in less than two years.

2 weeks ago

Norwegian Air to Rent a Superjumbo as It Sorts Out Rolls-Royce Engine Issues

Norwegian Air to Rent a Superjumbo as It Sorts Out Rolls-Royce Engine Issues

Brian Sumers, Skift

Norwegian is likely paying a lot more to a rent a gently-used Airbus A380 than it did for Wamos Air Boeing 747. But passengers hated the antiquated 747, and Norwegian took some criticism for flying it from New York to London. This is probably a better approach.

2 weeks ago

Qantas Hired This Professor to Help Flyers Beat Jet Lag

Qantas Hired This Professor to Help Flyers Beat Jet Lag

Brian Sumers, Skift

Travelers can leverage effective strategies to limit jet lag. There's only one problem. Most people lack the willpower to follow advice from the scientific community. That hasn't stopped Qantas, which hired a specialist to help.

2 weeks ago

Are the Good Times Ending for Cheap Flights?

Are the Good Times Ending for Cheap Flights?

Brian Sumers, Skift

Airline passengers never know how good they have it until it's too late. Airfares are going up, and passengers are going to remember 2016-17 as the glory years for fare bargains. Of course, at the time, they didn't think so.

2 weeks ago

U.S. Airlines Hope to Charge Passengers More as Fuel Prices Climb

U.S. Airlines Hope to Charge Passengers More as Fuel Prices Climb

Brian Sumers, Skift

U.S. airlines got a little fat and happy when fuel prices were at historically low levels. Passengers loved it too, because prices on competitive routes came down. But that's ending now, and travelers should get used to the new normal.

3 weeks ago

Southwest CEO Says Assigned Seats Still Don’t Make Sense

Southwest CEO Says Assigned Seats Still Don’t Make Sense

Brian Sumers, Skift

You have to give Southwest Airlines CEO Gary Kelly credit. Analysts are constantly prodding him to embrace tried-and-true approaches for generating ancillary revenue. For the most part, he resists. He doesn't want to mess with the airline's secret sauce.

3 weeks ago