the new york times looks at why the major airline carriers are having so much trouble (via jason kottke). while it’s satisfying to bitch about the poor customer service, i think the key information is in this paragraph:

“The low-fare airlines’ operations are simpler and leaner; their labor costs are much lower; they do not have the financial burden of pension obligations to thousands of retired workers, a major expense for the older carriers; and crucially, they have not annoyed their customers nearly as much.”

it is too bad that the article does not throw out any figures about the impact of the labor costs and pension obligations.

here is another article from the perspective of airline employees, particularly former employees of now-defunct airlines.

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