Major airlines start cutting back on flights


In an effort to deal with losses caused by higher fuel costs, US airlines have begun cutting, and will continue to cut, flights especially in the final months of this year. And as airlines cut flights, the natural progression will be the laying off of employees.

According to aviation consultant Boyd Group, “It’ll find its level by the end of 2009. That level will probably be 15 to 18 percent less capacity and about 15 to 20 percent higher average fares.”

American Airlines Inc. already reduced flights this week to San Juan, Puerto Rico with less flights being offered between various cities to come. They will end flights to Oakland, California; Barranquilla, Colombia and London Stansted.American Eagle will stop flights to Albany, NY; Harrisburg, PA; Providence, RI; San Luis Obispo, CA and the Dominican Republic.

Mr. Boyd said, “Man, when oil hit 115 bucks on the way up, we were doing obituaries on carriers. Now it’s dropped to $115, and you’d think it was cheap oil again.”

Fares between domestic US cities are up approximately 16 percent this year, coupled with new charges for items once considered standard for travel but now being referred to as “amenities.”