|Quoting KarlB737 (Thread starter):|
I am pleased that they want to capture this service on top of acquiring their own oil refinery. Some individuals are doing some creative thinking to keep the airline strong. I hope both of these efforts works out well for them.
|Quoting RDH3E (Reply 1):|
Interesting that they decreased this practice. It's probably not super-profitable, but it's reliable at least. UA has been the biggest mail carrier of late, I wonder if this is another competitive "take advantage" type move or if DL genuinely sees a decent profit in it.
|Quoting catiii (Reply 4):|
Given the looming insolvency of the USPS and the lost market share to email, I'm not sure there's really going to be any long term viability to it, but for a quick buck it sure works.
|Quoting mayor (Reply 5):|
I could never quite figure why the USPS was a money losing operation. They got the most favorable rates possible (much better than air freight or express), priority loading, money back if it doesn't get loaded, etc.
|Quoting wjcandee (Reply 7):|
As to why Delta left the mail biz -- simple. They screwed up massively one Christmas, and the Postal Service lowered the boom on all the carriers. Their contract with FedEx opened their eyes to the level of accountability that FedEx imposes on itself, and which FedEx could offer the Service. The Service realized that with accountability comes better performance, and demanded in the new contract that the airlines scan mail bags and containers at all sorts of intermediate points. Many airlines felt it wasn't worth it or "just said no" in the hopes of having the standards relaxed; others decided to step up and comply. Now it's widely-accepted that if you want to carry mail, you have to meet performance metrics, like FedEx and UPS make themselves do every day. The Postal Service's service has greatly improved as a result, and it's actually a much-more-efficient operation than it was a decade ago. Hey, it's still the Postal Service, but, all in all, it does a pretty good job.
And it makes money.
|Quoting mayor (Reply 8):|
FedEx picked up that contract right after 9/11, because of security concerns of both the gov't. and the airlines. Both were worried about carrying mail that could have been a security risk, on pax flights, so FedEx was the logical choice. As far as the requirement of scanning at intermediate points goes, that was a cluster f**k from the beginning. Also, the USPS was allowed to fine the airlines if they put the mail on an earlier flight than what it was assigned to. Then they tried to fine the airlines if they didn't move first class mail (which was space available in the first place) on assigned flights. The only reason that first class was assigned was that's how the computer system was set up......the ramp guys saw a cart of orange mail bags, a cart of first class and one or two carts of air freight and because two of them were mail, that's what they loaded before the air freight, whether it was supposed to go or not.
|Quoting mayor (Reply 2):|
One of the reasons that they originally "decreased" the practice was that the terms of the contract they were trying to negotiate with the USPS were not favorable to DL. I believe that AA chose to drop carrying mail at the same time. There is nice profit to it and it seems as though it's an automatic way to add millions to the bottom line, however, it tends to put your air freight customers further down the priority list. With air freight, worldwide, being down right now, this is probably a good move. I just wonder what happens when air freight picks up, again.
|Quoting FlyASAGuy2005 (Reply 10):|
Actually, right now mail falls behind freight as far as loading. If you have mail and freight to load and you only have time or weight to do one, the freight rides.