I've just added you to my respected user list. Very good points re: comparing Dell to the airline industry. BTW, I've a friend that *used* to work for Dell, and he still bitches about Dell managements' handling of staff reductions, even two years later.
One thing that many people blindly post in these forums is how "labor costs" need to go down. Well, with most airline employees in the field making $10-$25 per hour, does it seem that those salaries will bust the airlines? Probably not. I recall seeing an article on the Fortune Magazine website just after US went into bankruptcy the first time and just before UA
entered. The article stated that the labor costs of the six U.S. legacy carriers on 9/11, 65%-70% of those costs were at the airlines' HQ
campuses. Now, I know that there are plenty of admin, clerical, entry-level mgmt, etc working at HQ
whose salaries aren't high, but how much of that 65-70% goes to upper-management? I'm sure that it is a large percentage. And working for AA
, I still wonder to this day how the AMR Board of Directors allows AA
to employ three (3) VP
's for each department. Yes, a VP
, a Senior VP
, and an Executive VP
. I'm sure each of the folks in those positions make more than a dozen rampers, gate agents, mechanics, or F/A's combined.
Also, folks need to remember that the legacy carriers have pension plans that they pay huge $$ into every year, while LCC's don't have the burden of pensions to pay into.
Yes, the airlines, especially upper-mgmt heavy legacies, must make changes. But they cannot continue to ask their lowest paid front-line field workers to give up more than they already have.
Agreeing with your post, PBIflyer, the traveling public does need to pay more to fly. I'm not talking obscene amounts more. Perhaps 7-15% more, depending on the trip length. Regardless of which side of the "financial fence" anyone in here is on, all must agree that airfares should come up a bit, especially when airfares in some U.S. markets are cheaper than riding Amtrak or Greyhound!
There are many factors at work which are making it difficult for the legacy carriers - some the airlines can control, others they cannot. But, in the U.S. at least, the traveling public needs to be willing to cover the airlines' costs associated with flying.
"Keep thy airspeed up, less the earth come from below and smite thee." - William Kershner