Monday, August 04, 2008

It’s a Race to the Bottom: Run, Don’t Walk, Toward International Airlines

Flying to Europe or Asia for your next vacation? Are you a leisure traveler and not a business traveler stuck with a corporate account with a particular U.S. airline? If so, get yourself a domestic ticket on Alaska, Frontier, Virgin America, or JetBlue to an international gateway city (Los Angeles, New York, etc.) and fly a real airline (an international carrier) overseas.

The Upgrade: Travel Better blog talks about United’s possible new scheme to charge for all food on international flights. United is apparently doing the market research for that scenario now. As Upgrade says, we think your best choice increasingly becomes to fly international carriers and not U.S. ones. All the U.S. majors have international alliance partners, so even when you have to fly a U.S. carrier in the states, you can credit your frequent flyer miles to an international airline which flies most conveniently to your preferred destinations. As Upgrade says, it’s a race to the bottom, and the only winners will be international airlines and maybe a few domestic carriers such as Alaska, Southwest, or JetBlue.

Star Alliance
SeatGuru’s premium economy comparison chart