Thursday, July 01, 2010

Summer's Here and Airlines Are Packing 'Em In

Not to pick on Continental, the subject of the previous post on how airlines are lousing up elite status benefits. Continental is actually one of my favorite airlines, all things considered.

(Which is sort of like saying the flu is one of my favorite diseases ... all things considered.)

Anyway, Continental, which is always the first airline to report monthly operating statistics, says today that its mainline domestic load factor for June was 88.2 percent, a record. Load factor is the average of available seats occupied.

At over 80 percent, the general rule of thumb is most flights are operating full.

Let's see how the rest of the domestic airlines come in for June. For well over a year now, domestic airlines have been running at load factors well in excess of 80 percent.


1 comment:

ChefNick said...

I wish memory had a functional MRI component. In other words, that I could somehow upload my memory for this post. No matter, I'll just try to make words pass for images.

And I won't bring out the tired violin, bewailing how in times past, things were so much better, but I remember a time when it was a reasonable expectation, EVEN IN THE DAYS of (I dunno, what do they call it? Seat pitch, in millimeters?) it was reasonable to assume your elbow would not be even more restrained than at the matinée at your local XXX house.

The days when every seat was First Class.

I can't see how this is going to play out, Joe. As George Harrison said, All Things Must Pass and maybe Freddie Laker and RyanAir deserve(d) to pass, but sooner or later, this too, shall pass.

In a world where a chosen few take cruises to the Antarctic just because they can and others crash into Zairois markets at the end of the too-short runway, steered by Soviet pilots who never saw a Stoly they could ignore for long, there is no doubt in my mind that in my lifetime, this shall all, with all the accompanying din and accoutrements, come crashing down.

Oh, I guess that means your lifetime too. Good luck with that, that ninth life, that is.