Thursday, 25 March 2004
oneworld news and member airline news
US Airways staff warned major changes needed urgently 'or the airline will die'
US Airways Chief Executive David Siegel yesterday delivered a blunt message to the airline's workforce: Make major changes to reduce cost or the company will collapse.
With Southwest launching services from Philadelphia, one of its three main hubs, in less than two months, small fixes or temporary solutions would not enable US Airways to survive, he told them: "Southwest is coming to Philadelphia in May, and they're coming for one reason: they're coming to kill us. They beat us on the West Coast, and they beat us in Baltimore. If they beat us in Philadelphia, they're going to kill us."
In a webcast address, he said the airline needed to reduce unit costs from 10 cents to 6 cents with new labour agreements in place by this summer to be able to compete.
It would have to compete with Southwest on price or lose its customers, with a fare structure akin to a low-cost carrier. In addition, it would need to make changes to its schedules, fleet, shift to a single-class in-flight service with improved entertainment and revamp its website, to increase its proportion of internet sales.