An analysis of the competitive effects of the proposed merger of Continental and United Airlines by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) shows that combining the airlines would eliminate one effective competitor (defined as providing at least 5 percent of traffic between airports) in 1,135 city pairs, affecting almost 35 million passengers.
It appears United Airlines' public flirtation with US Airways might have generated the desired effect, as Continental Airlines has finally agreed to merge with UAL two years after Continental spurned United's last proposal to wed. The $3.2 billion merger would result in the biggest airline in the world and leave the U.S. with three major international carriers: the new United, Delta and American Airlines.
Signature Flight Support (Booth No. 7070) has appointed airline and travel veteran Maria Sastre as the company’s chief operating officer for global operations. Sastre previously served as United Airlines’ vice president of worldwide customer satisfaction, where she managed strategy development, airport operations, international call centers and financial management.
The NTSB is investigating a near-midair between a United Airlines Boeing 777 and a Cessna 182 over San Francisco on March 27. United Flight 889 was taking off from San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and climbing per ATC to 3,000 feet. As the aircraft was climbing through 1,100 feet msl, the tower controller reported traffic at the 1 o’clock position, which was followed immediately by a TCAS traffic alert.
The weeks preceding the unforeseen losses caused by Europe's volcanic ash crisis saw improved trading conditions across much of the airline sector and, in its wake, revived momentum for long-anticipated consolidation between carriers on both sides of the Atlantic.
United Airlines has finalized a firm order for 25 Boeing 787-8 jetliners, the Chicago-based carrier announced today. Valued at $4.2 billion at list prices, the deal includes so-called purchase rights for another 50 Dreamliners.
United said it plans to take delivery of the 787s at the same time it begins to retire its Boeing 747s and 767s, between 2016 and 2019.
Atlanta-based Atlantic Southeast Airlines (ASA) last month launched a new code-share partnership with United Airlines covering flights into and out of Chicago O’Hare and Washington Dulles International Airports. ASA began the service with a February 11 flight between O’Hare and Columbus, Ohio. It now flies eight weekday flights from O’Hare and 15 weekday flights from Dulles using eight newly refurbished 50-seat Bombardier CRJ200s.
With the first flight of its mold-breaking 787 Dreamliner finally accomplished, Boeing now will attempt the Herculean task of finishing flight testing and obtaining certification by the end of next year. Only the weather marred the first flight of the first 787 (ZA001) on December 15, forcing test pilots Mike Carriker and Randy Neville to cut the planned four-hour mission to three hours.
The alacrity with which Boeing assumed control of the former Vought plant in South Carolina this past summer, secured the necessary construction approvals for an adjacent factory and reached a decision on the ultimate location of a second 787 Dreamliner assembly line had already led to skepticism about the company’s commitment to negotiating with its workers based around Washington state’s Puget Sound.
Now that his company has joined the ranks of the major airlines with its takeover of Frontier and Midwest Airlines, an admission by Republic Airways CEO Bryan Bedford of a “jaundiced view” of the small regional jet market might not come as a surprise.