Southwest plans to tell Senate it’s confident in its schedule after holiday meltdown

A Southwest Airlines passenger jet lands at Chicago Midway International Airport in Chicago, Illinois, on December 28, 2022. Kamil Krzaczynski | AFP | Getty Images Southwest Airlines plans to apologize before a Senate panel on Thursday over the carrier’s December meltdown that stranded hundreds of thousands of travelers around Christmas. “In hindsight, we did not have enough winter operational resilience,” Chief Operating Officer Andrew Watterson said in written testimony, which was reviewed by CNBC, ahead of Senate Commerce Committee hearing. Southwest canceled more than 16,700 flights between Dec. 21 and…

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Delta raises employee pay 5%, second increase in a year

Nurphoto | Nurphoto | Getty Images Delta Air Lines is raising employee pay 5%, the second time its lifted staff pay in less than a year as a sharp rebound in travel boosts the carrier’s profits and the U.S. labor market remains tight. Delta raised employee pay 4% in May, the first increases since before the pandemic. “Considering the depths of losses we suffered during the pandemic, including a $1 billion first quarter loss just last year, this is truly a remarkable achievement,” CEO Ed Bastian wrote in a staff…

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Amazon scales back cargo flying as demand cools, contractor says

An Amazon-branded Boeing 767 freighter, nicknamed Amazon One, flies over Lake Washington during the Seattle Seafair Air Show on Aug. 5, 2016 in Seattle. Getty Images One of Amazon‘s key air cargo operators said Monday that the e-commerce giant is scaling back on flights this year, citing lower demand and slower economic growth. Air Transport Services Group, which runs a significant portion of Amazon’s air cargo fleet, said it expects to operate Boeing 767 freighters dedicated to servicing Amazon and DHL at reduced schedules and less flight time per aircraft.…

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FAA proposes more than $1 million fine on United Airlines over preflight safety checks

United Airlines Boeing wide body 777-200 aircraft as seen during take off and flying phase, passing in front of the air traffic control tower while the plane is departing from Amsterdam Schiphol Airport AMS towards Houston IAH in the United States of America as flight UA21.  Nicolas Economou | Nurphoto | Getty Images The Federal Aviation Administration said Monday that it is proposing a more than $1.1 million penalty against United Airlines for allegedly failing to perform required fire-system safety checks on its Boeing 777s. United didn’t immediately comment. The…

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Southwest faces Senate hearing next week following holiday meltdown

John and Lori Ingoldsby, who drove to Denver after the first leg of their flight on Southwest Airlines was canceled, wait for a flight to finish their trip at Denver International Airport on December 28, 2022 in Denver, Colorado. Michael Ciaglo | Getty Images Southwest Airlines‘ chief operating officer, Andrew Watterson, will face questions from a Senate panel next Thursday about the carrier’s holiday meltdown that stranded hundreds of thousands of travelers. Southwest said the hearing date overlapped with “a previous commitment” for CEO Bob Jordan. Jordan, who has been…

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Senators push for airline passenger protections after holiday travel meltdown

Passengers walk past a flight status board in Terminal C at Orlando International Airport that shows many delays, Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2023, after the FAA grounded all U.S. flights earlier in the day. Joe Burbank | Tribune News Service | Getty Images Two Senate Democrats on Tuesday reintroduced legislation to strengthen airline passenger protections following a year of travel disruptions that was capped by chaos that stranded thousands of people over the December holidays. Sens. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut and Edward Markey of Massachusetts are trying to get traction on…

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Winter weather disrupts hundreds of flights across Texas

Delayed flights prepare to depart from Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) on January 11, 2023 in Dallas, Texas. John Moore | Getty Images More than 1,000 U.S. flights were canceled Tuesday as winter weather hit Texas. Over 700 flights to and from American Airlines‘ hub Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport were canceled, about 40% of the airport’s schedule, according to FlightAware. Nearly 200 flights at Dallas Love Field, where Southwest Airlines is based, were canceled. The Federal Aviation Administration slowed arrivals into both airports. Airlines lifted fees or fare differences for…

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Boeing plans to add a new 737 Max production line to meet strong demand

An aerial view of the engines and fuselage of an unpainted Boeing 737 MAX airplane parked in storage at King County International Airport-Boeing Field in Seattle, Washington, June 1, 2022. Lindsey Wasson | Reuters Boeing said it plans to add a fourth 737 Max production line in the second half of next year as it targets higher output of its best-selling plane, an executive told staff on Monday. The new line will be housed in Boeing’s massive Everett, Washington, factory, where it has been reworking some of its 787 Dreamliners…

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JetBlue pilots approve contract extension that comes with over 21% in raises

A JetBlue passenger jet (Embraer 190) taxis at LaGuardia Airport in New York, New York. Robert Alexander | Archive Photos | Getty Images JetBlue Airways pilots have approved a contract extension that comes with 21.5% raises over the next 18 months as the industry reverses slow progress in labor deals during a pilot shortage. JetBlue last year reached a deal to acquire budget carrier Spirit Airlines. That airline’s pilots approved a new two-year contract that their union estimated to be worth around $463 million. If the merger isn’t approved by…

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China looks past Covid as tourist bookings surge for the Lunar New Year

BEIJING — People in China are moving past the pandemic and going out to travel, preliminary data for the Lunar New Year holiday show. “Pent-up demand is being released as many people rush to scenic spots, watch firework shows and crowd into restaurants and hotels,” Nomura’s chief China economist Ting Lu said in a report Thursday. China’s Covid “exit wave” is quickly ending as official data show a drop in infections, hospitalizations and deaths, he said. “China has been rapidly reaching its Covid herd immunity, as the government estimates about…

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