According to a new travel survey released today by Zagat, Virgin America is the carrier of choice for frequent flyers. The airline was named the poll’s top overall carrier for it’s coach and premium classes on both domestic and international routes. More than 8,000 frequent flyers were asked how well airlines delivered on comfort, service and food.
Other winners in the annual poll included:
- Continental Airlines – which ranked first among “big” U.S. airlines for coach and premium classes on domestic and international flights. Continental is merging with United Airlines.
- Southwest Airlines – which was recognized for the best website of all U.S. and foreign airlines. On domestic routes, Southwest also was cited for the best value, the best luggage policy, the best check-in experience and the best on-time flight estimates for consumers.
- Singapore Airlines – which was named number one for coach and premium classes on international flights.
- JetBlue & Virgin Atlantic – which ranked number one for in-flight entertainment for their respective domestic and international flights.
Here’s some more travel news you can use:
- Earlier today, JetBlue unveiled its “Top Secret Sale” where you can book up to nine different vacation packages starting at $99 per person, including airfare and a 3-day hotel stay. Travel between Dec. 5-14, 2010. You pick the destination and the flight, JetBlue picks the hotel. Even though you can’t pick your hotel, the airline guarantees it is a three-to-five star hotel. Taxes and airline fees are extra.
- Passengers on a Delta flight from Chicago to New York got an eye-full over the Thanksgiving weekend after an “emotionally disturbed” woman stripped naked and created a ruckus. As flight attendants tried to calm her down and cover her with blankets, she allegedly shouted, “No! No! No!” She was eventually taken into custody, but not charged.
- Airlines are adding seats and flights, cautiously betting that the optimistic travel outlook the industry has had for much of the year will continue. Most carriers are adding seats by increasing the number of flights, or by moving to bigger planes. JetBlue has added the most with a 7.6% increase; and Delta has added 5%. With increased supply, there’s hope that cheaper airfares are on the horizon. If you’re planning to fly in 2011, this is a good year to track for airfare decreases with Yapta.
After Southwest Airlines kicked a cranky 2-year old and his mother off a flight last week, there seems to be growing support for adult-only flights. As a parent of two kids under the age of five, I’ve learned to tolerate the ruckus that kids can make on planes and sympathize with the parents doing all they can to calm their little bundles of joy. However, according to a recent survey conducted by MSNBC, I may be in the vast minority. A full 76% of those polled support Southwest’s decision to give mom and child the boot. The survey was also flush with interesting comments – including talk of adult-only flights.
I suppose if pets can have their own exclusive flights, it only makes sense that there should be adult-only flights as well, right? Perhaps that would better serve those passengers less tolerant of kids – and prevent parents from suffering the embarrassment of a rowdy child.
Would you pay a little extra for a flight with no kids? Got an opinion? Post it here.
Here’s some more travel news you can use:
- Northwest Airlines Flight 195 out of Minneapolis was apparently “attacked” by Pigeons Saturday afternoon while taking off for Las Vegas. The pilot announced the bird strike about 15 minutes into the flight and decided to return to MSP because of suspected engine damage. The plane landed safely and there were no injuries in the incident. The passengers experienced a two-hour delay due to the attack.
- As of last week, both Continental Airlines and Air China have agreed to share frequent flier points so that travelers may earn miles easier. Now, Air China PhoenixMiles members will earn Status Mileage on all scheduled flights run by Continental. They can also redeem Award Travel for any round-trip flights and Award Upgrades involving Continental. Continental OnePass members can also accrue EQM and EQP on flights, and redeem Award Travel and Upgrades for round-trips with Air China.
- Virgin Atlantic today introduced a new iPhone app that’s designed to help travelers overcome their fear of flying. The “Flying Without Fear” app contains a personal introduction by Sir Richard Branson, a video-based in-flight explanation from start to finish of a flight, relaxation exercises and fear therapy, a fear attack button for emergencies with breathing exercises and quick tips – among other features. As a bonus, users of the app are offered 2,000 points when joining Virgin Atlantic’s Flying Club. The app is available for $4.99.
- JetBlue, the largest domestic carrier serving Boston, has become the official airline of Boston College Athletics. According to a press release, JetBlue’s sponsorship of the Eagles (financial terms not disclosed) includes fixed and electronic signage in Boston College athletic facilities including Alumni Stadium, home of Boston College football and Conte Forum, home of Boston College basketball and hockey. Additional sponsorship elements include on-field, on-court and on-ice promotions; a comprehensive online marketing program featuring rotating web banners and fixed advertising positions on bceagles.com; a branded email promotional campaign; and print advertisements in Boston College Athletic publications and in-game program guides.