Tuesday marked customer day one for US Airways and American Airlines — essentially the first day that passengers might notice the two carriers are operated by the same company.
You have to credit the folks at American Airlines. They have sure received a lot of free publicity regarding a simple question: How the airline paints its airplanes.
American announced today it would keep the paint job it introduced in January 2013, and I featured it earlier today on the blog. But now we have American CEO Doug Parker’s note to employees.
The most interesting part about Parker’s note is how long it takes to paint planes.
- Widebody 13-17 days
- Narrowbody 8-11 days
- Express 7-9 days
Want to see his entire letter? Keep reading this post.
The employees of American and US Airways have spoken. The new American Airlines Group, which began operations on Dec. 9, will eventually carry the paint job American introduced in early 2013 with the flashy red, white and blue tail. All US Airways and US Airways Express planes will eventually carry the livery.
Employees of both airlines were given the opportunity to vote on how they wanted planes to be painted. There were two choices. They could vote for the new livery introduced in January. Or they could vote to have American revert the tail to what it was for decades — two interlocking As. But even if the tail changed to the old version, the rest of the paint job would have remained the same as the January 2013 version.
According to American, 60 percent of the employees at US Airways and American voted. There were 31,355 votes cast in favor of the flag tail, and 29,063 votes cast in favor of the AA tail.
According to Jack Nicas of the Wall Street Journal, it takes up to 17 days to fully repaint a widebody airplane.
American Airlines is not pulling out of Santa Barbara Airport, as a Barrons.com blog post published Wednesday suggested, airport spokeswoman Lynn Houston told me.
Cramped 50-seat regional jets could be a thing of the past, at least at American Airlines.
American Airlines Group announced Thursday that it will buy 90 new 76-seat jets from two manufacturers — Embrarer, which makes the E-175 and Bombardier, which makes the CRJ900. American Airlines Group is buying 60 of the E-175s and 30 of the CR9s.
The deal is a little convoluted, which makes sense considering this is the first week American and US Airways have operated as one. The CR9s will be assigned to PSA Airlines, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of US Airways. But the CR9s, when delivered, will carry the American Eagle brand. There will be no more US Airways Express.
American has not decided which of its regional subsidiaries will take ownership of the new E-175s. But regardless of which regional carrier technically owns the planes, the aircraft will also be branded as American Eagle.
The new CR9s will start arriving in the second quarter of 2014, according to American. The new E-175s will begin arriving in the first quarter of 2015.