Is it safe to fly on American Airlines?

Is it safe to fly on American Airlines?

Note: I’m featuring a video at the top of each post in which I’ll offer advice or commentary related to the story. Please let me know what you think, and sign up for my channel. You’ll get a preview of the next post.

As American Airlines pilots formed picket lines at airports across the country last week and the nation’s third-largest air carrier canceled hundreds of flights, David Ludt made the difficult decision to redeem all of his AAdvantage miles for a flight to Europe next year.
Continue reading…


Southwest Airlines pilot holds plane for murder victim’s family

It’s easy to be an airline industry critic in an era of “no waivers, no favors” and fees on top of fees. It’s easy to paint airlines as heartless corporations that treat us like self-loading cargo.

But every now and then, you hear a story that turns you into an adoring fan. Like Nancy’s story.

Before I continue, I should mention a few things: Nancy is a faithful reader of this site, and I agreed to use only her first name because of the brutal nature of the crime and the age of the victim. Second, I’m not an emotional, John Boehner-type, but I can’t read her story without getting a little teary.

So you’ve been warned: Grab a tissue.
Continue reading…


Pilot who posted security flaw video online is punished by the TSA

An airline pilot who posted a series of videos online that exposed shortcomings in airport security has been punished by the Transportation Security Administration, which included a visit to his home by federal agents and sheriff’s deputies.

Sound familiar? It does to me.

The videos, which have since been deleted, show that thousands of airport employees are allowed to skip security every day at San Francisco International Airport. Here’s the full report from the San Francisco ABC affiliate and the station that broke the story, News 10 in Sacramento.

The pilot, whose name was not given, had his gun confiscated and a deputy sheriff asked him to surrender his state-issued permit to carry a concealed weapon. The pilot’s status as a Federal Flight Deck Officer, a volunteer position, is being reviewed, he was told.
Continue reading…


United’s Denny Flanagan: “Being nice is contagious”

flanaganUnited Airlines Captain Denny Flanagan had his 15 minutes of fame — and then some — when he was “discovered” by several prominent print and broadcast outlets two years ago and profiled for his many random acts of kindness. But long after the TV crews left, Captain Flanagan continues to do good at United. I caught up with him recently.
Continue reading…

Minimum-wage pilots? Here’s one way of looking at flight deck salaries

pilot

The average cockpit wage cost per average passenger fare per hour of flight is just $3.73 — almost half the minimum wage — according to analysis by Robert Herbst of the Web site Airlinefinancials.com.

Pilots at Southwest Airlines and Alaska Airlines fared the best, making $6.09 and $4.14 an hour, respectively, while JetBlue Airways and AirTran Airways ranked the lowest, earning $2.93 an hour and $3.03 an hour, respectively.
Continue reading…