US Airways trying bold experiment of breaking the last straw


Just when will fliers rebel against all the cost-cutting at the airlines? Probably never. We will just keep taking the charges in stride. If anything is going to make us stop flying, it is that costs are going up and people just don't have the money to travel as much these days.

Today's news about Northwest adding up to an $80 surcharge on flights is bad news, but has become pretty typical these days. The bigger headline may be what US Airways is trying to do, as reported by the New York Times: charge for coffee and other beverages. The hidden lead here is that the fee was originally announced June 12 and did not cause too much of a fuss, even though it marks the first time a major airline has stooped to these cost-cutting depths. It is only surfacing now because the union that represents flight attendants is complaining about it.

Even the company seems a little skeptical that they'll be able to pull it off. Officials are apparently telling flight attendants that they can be liberal in applying the new charges, meaning that if anyone complains, they can just placate them with a free drink.

I can imagine how those conversations will go: