I spent the past week in Philadelphia, getting there on Amtrak’s Acela, and staying at the Crowne Plaza Downtown. Attended a successful conference by day, and explored downtown Philadelphia by night. There’s quite a bit to do in Philadelphia, and I’m ashamed to admit, I had no idea! I’ll post separate reviews of Acela and the Crowne Plaza, but suffice it to say that as much as I love to fly, I have a hard time imagining myself not using Acela to travel from DC to as far as New York…ever. The Crowne Plaza was acceptable, nothing outlandish, but in a good location to explore Philadelphia.
Airlines began reporting their July traffic numbers this week, and the numbers look a little better. Yes, traffic is still falling, but the slide in demand appears to be easing. Granted, this is probably due to some of the lowest fares in recent memory which negatively impacts revenue. Southwest managed to eek out real traffic gains. Could it be the bottom? We’ve still got some work to do to get to the level of supply-demand equilibrium that will equate to profits for this crazy business that continues to intrigue me. But I think we may be close to finally getting this baby off the runway and into a long slow climb towards a more desirable business environment.
On-time performance numbers for June were reported this week as well. The numbers were the worst of the year, but still better than last year. The summer months are rarely good for airline operational performance with summer storms and such. Hawaiian was in its usual top spot for the best performance, while Comair was worst-performing during the month of June.
In other news, NTSB issued its final report on the Go! Airlines sleeping pilot incident which took place in Hawaii in February 2008. I don’t comment on flight safety issues, but take the time to read the report if you’re interested.
That about covers it for this “A Word on…” post.