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Travelers' Aid

Airline mergers and price hikes
June 10, 2000

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With all that's happening with the airlines and air fares recently, getting any sort of travel deal could be going the way of the do-do. A few week's ago we talked about how United Airlines wants to gobble up US Airways. Now more mega-mergers could be in the works. Over in Europe, British Airways is talking with Dutch airline KLM. And here in the U.S., American Airlines and Delta are plotting strategies, including combining their two airlines.

Now, some business analysts look at the bright side of these corporate take-overs . They use words like "streamline" and "synergy" and wax on about how great it all is. But some people are concerned, like the federal government. See, before any of these deals can go through, the Department of Justice has to be assured that there will still be enough competition for travel. They're primarily worried about what they call "consumer harm." According to Steve Lott, the business editor for Aviation Daily magazine, that means that bigger airlines may not necessarily be better. And if anyone knows how this all this merger madness is going to affect consumers, it's Terry Trippler. He's the airfare expert for Onetravel.com, an online travel agency that specializes in low fares. Listen to what these two guys have to say about airlines current merger-mania.

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