BA, CO and AA discussions.Back to Forum
Anonymous1 May 2008
” Airline discussions
British Airways is exploring opportunities for co-operation with American Airlines and Continental Airlines. Further details will be announced when appropriate.”
CO has a wide US and International network with hubs in New York and Houston. It will be interesting to see if anything develops as a result.1 May 2008
Yes, like some customer service.
I dont mean to be pessimistic, but all these alliances aren’t anything to do with the customer, they are just ways of trying to reduce costs in the face of oil at $120 a barrel. Its like code-sharing: a lot of smoke and mirrors dressed up as an enhanced offering.1 May 2008
Surely reducing costs is directly aligned to the interests of customers?
We passengers and our businesses pay the bills, ultimately. The more efficient airlines can be, the lower fares everyone can enjoy.
Lower costs also means more margin is available for investment in products and services, in terms of modern fuel conscious aircraft, better on the ground facilities and in the air improvements such as new seats, state of the art AVOD and yummier champers.
But this proposed alliance would not reduce the price of oil – in fact it is likely to head even higher into uncharted territory. So while oil may be a factor, it is more more likely a response against the surge towards consolidation elsewhere in the industry.
And alliances do directly benefit customers; think about shared lounge access, reciprocal use of mileage on other partner airlines and the ease of booking round the world tickets, to name but a few.
An alliance would be counterproductive were it to become overly dominant and create a monopoly situation; and that is what guarded against a BA/AA tie up in the past. But with Open Skies and many other niche carriers now in existence the dominance of the legacies, though considerable still, is not what it once was.
BA continues to invest in improved facilities and services for passengers both on board and on the ground, while remaining profitable.
It is in good shape compared to AA which despite benefitting from explicit and implicit government subsidy is currently losing $3m a day. Let us hope any tie up can reign in the high cost base at AA – only partially caused by a high oil price – and use the British Airways model to deliver a quality carrier of which the US can be proud.1 May 2008
AMR Corp.’s American Airlines and British Airways Plc may expand their marketing alliance and include Continental Airlines Inc. as the carriers seek to boost sales without a merger….
Link: url=http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601085&sid=awVNWlo2Ycek&refer=europe6 May 2008