A bankruptcy judge has scheduled a hearing for March 27 on the matter of the merger of American Airlines and US Airways. The proposed merger also needs to win approval from U.S. antitrust authorities before it becomes final. The carriers announced the merger last week.
Airlines for America said U.S. airlines improved key performance metrics in 2012. Airlines in the U.S. were superior last year in terms of baggage delivery and on-time arrivals "while continuing their stellar record of safety," said Dan Elwell, senior vice president for safety, security and operations at A4A.
US Airways chairman and CEO Doug Parker met with both pilot unions that will represent pilots at the merged US Airways-American Airlines. Additionally, the unions said their leaders met with each other "to affirm our mutual support of the merger between American Airlines and US Airways."
The 10 largest U.S. airlines that have announced 2012 results earned a profit of $152 million, or 21 cents per passenger, for the year after facing high fuel costs. John Heimlich, chief economist for Airlines for America, said U.S. carriers are "setting up a foundation for a structurally more healthy industry."
Airport security hassles have led many experts to call for a renewed Trusted Traveler program that uses "positive profiling" to expedite passengers known to pose no security threat. But Kevin Mitchell, chairman of the Business Travel Coalition, writes that such an effort is bound to fail unless structural changes are made to the program, including background checks and technology controls overseen by the TSA rather than private vendors.