Brian Sumers

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Brian Sumers

Senior Aviation Business Editor

Recent Stories from Brian Sumers:

Time for Airlines to Get Tough (Real Tough) on Boeing

Time for Airlines to Get Tough (Real Tough) on Boeing

Brian Sumers, Skift

The text messages between Boeing test pilots that came out recently may not be a smoking gun, but they don't look good. How will airlines respond? Let's hope with some backbone.

3 hours ago

Delta Air Lines Sells a New Subscription That Indirectly Includes Overhead Bin Access

Delta Air Lines Sells a New Subscription That Indirectly Includes Overhead Bin Access

Brian Sumers, Skift

This priority boarding craze is getting out of hand. Almost no one wants to get on an airplane 45 minutes before it departs. People go nuts over boarding early because they have overhead bin anxiety. Can we just start charging for bin space? It's a precious resource for which demand outstrips supply.

5 days ago

United’s Plan to Use Larger Jets to Control Rising Costs

United’s Plan to Use Larger Jets to Control Rising Costs

Brian Sumers, Skift

Fun fact: What airlines refer to as costs is not an absolute measure of how much a carrier spends. A massive global airline like United can spend a lot more money from quarter to quarter and still keep its costs in check so long as it grows capacity during the quarter.

6 days ago

American Airlines Targets January 16 for Boeing 737 Max’s Return to Service

American Airlines Targets January 16 for Boeing 737 Max’s Return to Service

Brian Sumers, Skift

Is this finally it? Is the Boeing 737 Max returning to service? American Airlines is more confident than ever that the airplane will be ready by January 16, but that remains to be seen.

2 weeks ago

LAX Leads Airport Stand Against Uber and Lyft Congestion

LAX Leads Airport Stand Against Uber and Lyft Congestion

Brian Sumers, Skift

This is a bad development for frequent flyers. Many Uber and Lyft riders value their time, and they don't want to have to hop on a shuttle bus to get to a rideshare pickup area. Here's a better idea: Let people arrange for rideshare pickups at the terminals — but only if they pay extra money for the privilege.

3 weeks ago

Allegiant Air Is Counting On New NFL Stadium in Vegas to Boost Recognition

Allegiant Air Is Counting On New NFL Stadium in Vegas to Boost Recognition

Brian Sumers, Skift

Allegiant Air wants more customers to know what it is, so it's putting its name on a new NFL stadium. It's an out-of-character move for America's most frugal airline.

3 weeks ago

What’s Gone Wrong at American Airlines?

What’s Gone Wrong at American Airlines?

Brian Sumers, Skift

American Airlines has made a lot of excuses for its performance this year. It blames so many of its problems on a labor dispute and the grounding of the Boeing 737 Max. But perhaps there's something more here?

4 weeks ago

United Airlines Simplifies Seat Upgrades With Points Incentives

United Airlines Simplifies Seat Upgrades With Points Incentives

Brian Sumers, Skift

The majority of U.S. travelers don't have to worry about how they'll upgrade on United Airlines. But United's most loyal customers, who contribute more than their share of revenue, care deeply about the process. United can't make things too difficult for them, or they will defect.

4 weeks ago

This Startup Wants U.S. Airlines to Use Buses to Replace Smaller Regional Jets

This Startup Wants U.S. Airlines to Use Buses to Replace Smaller Regional Jets

Brian Sumers, Skift

It's hard to think of the bus as a disruptive form of mass transportation. But who knows? Maybe this company, Landline, will revolutionize how Americans buy airline tickets.

4 weeks ago

Technology, Not Economics, Is Keeping Delta Air Lines From Offering Free Wi-Fi

Technology, Not Economics, Is Keeping Delta Air Lines From Offering Free Wi-Fi

Brian Sumers, Skift

JetBlue somehow makes free Wi-Fi work. But Delta hasn't figured it out yet. It has so many customers on so many flights, and it's worried free Wi-Fi might overwhelm Gogo's systems and degrade the system for everyone.

1 month ago

Virgin Atlantic Unveils Massive Growth Plans With a (Major) Catch

Virgin Atlantic Unveils Massive Growth Plans With a (Major) Catch

Brian Sumers, Skift

On a branding and product level, Virgin Atlantic has long punched above its weight. But overall, Virgin Atlantic is just another undersize airline trying to squeeze out a profit amid intense competition. Perhaps Heathrow's expansion will change that. But don't bet on it.

1 month ago

United Airlines Plays Up Its Denver Advantage as Global Routes Suffer

United Airlines Plays Up Its Denver Advantage as Global Routes Suffer

Brian Sumers, Skift

No doubt United President Scott Kirby has a high opinion of his talents. But he said United's Denver gamble would pay off. And by all accounts, it has.

1 month ago