First of all, a company cannot terminate its pension plan at will. Usually, a company terminates its plan when it liquidates through Chapter 7. It can also terminate a pension plan during a Chapter 11 proceeding, with permission of the court.
In the case of UA
, the Pension Guaranty Board has been fighting UA
's possible termination, because it's short of funds.
, and CO
can't simply terminate their plans to save money. And from what I understand, AA
's unions made sure that the plans would stay 100% funded as part of the wage cuts.
As for the legacies all going out of business, it won't happen for two reasons. First, most LCCs aren't interested in flying internationally. My friend at AA
is a F/O, and he often has WN
pilots in the jump seat. WN
has no interest in flying to Canada and Mexico because: a) getting involved in currency fluctuations, b) red tape involved on both sides of the borders, c) the cost of starting trans-border flying, and d) plenty of new cities available in the U.S.
The LCCs aren't about to rush out and start buying used 767s or new 7E7s to start service to Europe or Asia. And a lot of people wouldn't fly them. My wife can only fly coach for domestic travel, but she gets to fly business for travel overseas.
Second, the LCCs want routes that are profitable. Flying to places like TVC, PWM
, or RST only makes sense when flights connect at a hub with a multitude of destinations. WN
's last expansion was PHL