Low-cost carrier Southwest will see its cost per seat mile rise about 2 percent in the third quarter because of a bum router that blew. Ironic that a router led to so much havoc with the carrier's route map and schedules. Delta, which experienced an unrelated meltdown this week, will take a little longer to estimate the financial impact.
Delta replaced its chief information officer in February because the board wasn't satisfied with the airline's technology performance. Undoubtedly, after this week's global grounding, there is a helluva lot of additional soul-searching to be done.
Delta's apparent IT problems came on the heels of a major grounding of Southwest's flights last month. This could screw up schedules for the airline for days.
Lots of consumers start their trip-planning with flights. Expedia will use its customer reviews of flights to spur more flight bookings but the company is also focusing on up-selling and facilitating smooth navigation to hotel and vacation-package options.
This was a corrupt performance on the part of the former Port Authority of New York and New Jersey chairman and United Airlines and some of its former executives don't emerge looking squeaky-clean either.
It seemingly takes Google forever to roll out new features in travel products such as Hotel Ads and Google Flights. But in light of all that A/B testing going on, Google will continue to take its own sweet time. Google is not beholden to anyone else's schedule. After all, it's Google.
After years of relative neglect as big online players focused on hotels, companies such as TripAdvisor, Expedia and Google are investing in and giving new attention to flight products. Kicking and screaming, airlines may end up having to pay more attention to their customers.
Let's see: Delta, American and United simultaneously changed their rules on multi-city tickets to the detriment of price-conscious passengers looking to save some money. Three airlines that have a dominant share of U.S. domestic flights. Is anyone at the Department of Justice taking a look? They should.
Should competitors be concerned that Destinations on Google is a harbinger of Google's global takeover of trip-planning and the travel industry? Don't be paranoid. Plenty of companies can out-compete Google but its dominance of search and ability to make traffic disappear on a dime are ongoing headaches given that the playing field tilts toward Mountain View, California.
U.S. airline math means adding 700 flights per day in the week before Christmas and cutting about 5,000 per day on Christmas Eve and December 25. The great unknown in the equation is whether the weather will cooperate.