Airline Earnings

Airlines were out with their earnings announcements this week (and late last week).  The results:  the discounters shined a bit, and the legacies didn’t.  However, most everyone surprised just a tiny bit to the upside, especially United.  Consensus seems to be that things have stopped getting worse, and the airlines are experimenting with some fare increases.

On the surface, American’s numbers were noticeably worse than its peers.  I wonder why?

I wonder if the airlines that  charge for the first checked bag are losing business to those that don’t?  Something tells me that they may be.  I continue to believe that JetBlue’s policy of one bag for free and charging for the second is the right move, and I bet you money that Southwest matches that policy within 18 to 24 months, if not before.

Hilton HHonors Changes

I posted my first reaction to Hilton’s upcoming devaluation of HHonors.  But we really need to wait and see what happens in January.  You see, Hilton issued it’s new point chart, but won’t announce category changes for its hotels until January.  Hilton has been ok to me this year aside from lounge access.  I’m keeping an open mind, but have moved 2 stays to Marriott and Starwood.  The Starwood Preferred Guest Card from American Express remains the best of the affinity cards in my opinion.

Continental Joins Star This Week

Continental makes the move to Star Alliance on October 27th.  I’m still considering where to stash my Star miles, and Continental becomes a lot more viable with it’s entry into Star and associated OnePass enhancements.  My US Airways Dividend Miles account should be the logical place.  It’s predecessor, the Piedmont Frequent Flyer Bonus Program was the first miles scheme I ever joined (at age 17), but the recent history of US Airways’ actions in the mileage arena make me a tiny bit leery.