News and notes from around the interweb:
- The ‘Big Mac Index’ has been a useful albeit imperfect way of computing purchasing power parity. People may earn less in one country compared to another, but cost of a bundle of goods there may be lower too so the income comparison alone doesn’t tell the whole story of relative wealth.
There’s another take, comparing the cost of Starbucks lattes around the world but I don’t think the metric would be as useful. Starbucks hasn’t spread as broadly as McDonald’s, and in a meaningful sense Starbucks is selling more of an overall experience than McDonald’s. In some places it’s a status good, in other markets with more highly developed coffee cultures it doesn’t carry the same connotations. So you’re not necessarily comparing the same ‘product’ from country to country.
- Airlines appear to be having the same problem getting money out of Egypt that carriers had with Venezuela.
- Interview with the Pan Am co-pilot who survived the Tenerife disaster. (HT: Cranky Flier)
- ‘Upgrading’ to extra legroom seating in Delta economy caused Flying Blue to cancel a US domestic award ticket.
- Which airlines take the longest to pick up the phone and to answer email?
- Behind the scenes of the air traffic control tower at New York JFK: