News and notes from around the interweb:
- An example of gaming the IHG Accelerate promotion.
- How to never spill your coffee, according to science. Especially useful in turbulence. Maybe Cathay Pacific would start serving hot beverages when the seat belt sign is on (can I tell you how annoying this rule is when the last hour into Hong Kong experiences some light chop?).
- Did missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 loiter for a while near an India military airport on the Car Nicobar island before turning south towards McMurdo Sound in Antarctica?
- This can’t be good. When a company tells consumers ‘change is coming’ but don’t tell them what the change is, you know it isn’t going to be good. And when the word ‘enhance’ shows up…
[W]e continue to add new ways for customers to use miles… our focus will be on simplifying SkyMiles and making it easier to interact with it through enhanced functionality.
Don’t say I didn’t warn you many times over the years. As the last President of SkyMiles explained, “The frequent flyer model of over-awarding is not sustainable and must be changed. It’s either going to be redemption or accrual or both.”
- I’m reminded that rewarding revenue rather than frequency has been a long time in coming. I didn’t like it in 2003, and I don’t like it now.
- One reason American is retiring all those MD80s. Sure they’re gas guzzlers but fuel prices are low. And they’re given to maintenance delays. But I hadn’t remembered this:
Back in October 2012, The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), issued an Airworthiness Directive (AD) pertaining to MD-80 fuel pumps. Every aircraft has to incorporate the required upgrades by fall of 2017
On the other hand, the FAA suggests an estimated cost of $21 million to retrofit 809 planes in the US. Even if off by an order of magnitude, this gives us reason to b skeptical of the claim that an airworthiness directive is a driver behind the timing of retirements.