Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Alliance for Aviation Across America Reaches 4,000 Members

As 2009 draws near, we would like to alert our members to our newest milestone; we have eclipsed the 4,000 member mark with the addition of The National Farmers Organization (NFO). In joining the Alliance, NFO has become part of a diverse and dedicated coalition that understands the importance of general aviation and is dedicated to protecting small and rural communities. As we continue to grow, we provide more and more examples of the true benefits of general aviation.

The Alliance for Aviation Across America welcomes the new year, and looks forward to working with you all over the next year to increase awareness about general aviation and protect the small towns and communities that rely on small aircraft.

Friday, December 19, 2008

President-Elect Obama Names Transportation Secretary

President Barack Obama named Representative Ray LaHood to the post of Transportation Secretary in his upcoming Administration, according to CQ Today. Read the article here.

As the news broke, Aero-News received comment from AOPA and NBAA about the appointment. Their comments can be read here.

You can learn more about Rep. LaHood here.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Continuing to Set the Record Straight

As the media continue to report on the CEO’s use of their private plane, Alliance members continue to make their voices heard to their local newspapers. Below is a response submitted to the Southtown Star by another Illinois-based Alliance member.

Dear Editor:

Your article “For many CEO’s private jets the only way to fly,” unfortunately revealed how little most people understand the economic impact of the GA sector in our economy, or the contributions small aircraft make to business efficiency and the business bottom line.

First, the vast majority of businesses which use small planes are not big corporations. Over 85% are small to medium sized companies, some of which are non-profits. Most of these have one airplane, which seats only two to six people and is used to fly to smaller cities and rural communities which lack airline service, and use small community airports. They visit both customers and vendors for enhanced face to face meetings.

Second, small planes are an economic lifeline to small towns. Companies using airplanes for business are often located in small towns and rural areas that have no airline service. Their planes open the door to national and global commerce.

Finally, the General Aviation sector of our economy represents 5.4 percent of our Gross Domestic Product and contributes over $600 billion to the annual economy. Aviation also provides some nine million jobs in the United States today. What we call GA is a national network of businesses, farmers, agricultural groups, local cities and towns, charitable organizations and over 5,000 small and mid-sized airports.

In today’s distressed economy, we should be supporting and encouraging General Aviation as a vital engine of economic growth for a broad spectrum of businesses, all across America.


W. G. Frick

Libertyville, IL

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

More Member Voices

In response to this article in the Arizona Republic, Alliance member Dave Hansen of Kingman, AZ submitted the following response…

Dear Editor:

In spite of ongoing news coverage on the foolish actions of a few auto executives (“For many CEOs, private jets the only way to fly,” 11/20), we shouldn’t lose perspective of the fact that small aircraft are a key driver of businesses and economies across the country.

The fact is that only 3% of all of small aircraft are used by Fortune 500 companies. Instead, the vast majority of these planes – also called general aviation – are used by charitable groups, small to mid-sized businesses, flight schools, farmers and rural organizations, and doctors to reach smaller towns and communities that the commercial airlines don’t serve. These small aircraft, and the airports and communities that depend on them, are an important and often neglected part of our local and national economy, connecting medical care, tools and resources to cities across Arizona such as Cottonwood, Holbrook, and Coolidge.

In fact, for many businesses, a small plane is a tool as necessary as a car or computers – and between the recent economic downturn and wildly fluctuating fuel prices, a small plane is many businesses’ last hope for retaining their business model and staying connected to communities and resources that would be otherwise inaccessible. Whether its transporting patients to life-saving care, bringing recycled materials to plants, or using these planes for law enforcement, general aviation is a necessary tool for these communities.

We shouldn’t let the actions of a few color our view of what is a vital economic engine for much of America.


David Hansen

Kingman, AZ

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Voices of AAAA Members

In the wake of the media coverage of the CEO's of general motors using their private aircraft to fly to Washington and testify to the Senate. What is lost on the conversation are the true benefits private planes provide to our national economy, mainly small towns and communities.

Some our members have submitted letters to their local papers setting the record straight about the use of general aviation. In the next few days, we will be posting a few of these letters on our blog. Below is a letter from Steve Whitney, an Alliance member in Illinois.


Dear Editor:

Your November 21 article, “For many CEO’s private jets the only way to fly,” offered much to think about. While we may decry the excess and abuse of a few big corporate executives, we mustn’t lose sight of the tremendous contribution General Aviation as a whole makes to our national economy.

In addition to corporate aircraft, GA includes small businesses, farmers, agricultural groups, local cities and towns, charitable organizations like “Angel-Flight” and over 5,000 small and mid-sized airports. These grounds provide millions in economic in economic benefits to our economy as well as thousands of jobs to hard-working Americans across the country.

So it’s not just about corporate CEOs. Millions of hard-working families depend on General Aviation to put bread of their tables.

General Aviation is a lifeline to small business, small towns and rural communities all across America. Fully 85% of companies which use airplanes are small to mid-sized businesses. Most companies have one small aircraft, seating four to six people, flying relatively short trips to places which lack airline service, using local community airports.

General Aviation drives economic growth. Just ask municipal economic development officials in most cities, and they’ll tell you how aviation leads business growth. In these days of recession and unemployment, we need every tool we have to grow our local economies and provide high-wage jobs. General Aviation has always done just that.

So, while you may scoff at the “Big Three,” remember what GA really is, and the very real benefits the GA sector produces.


Steve Whitney

Glenview, IL

Monday, July 14, 2008

Remote Area Medical

A recent episode by "60 Minutes" highlighted the charity "Remote Area Medical" (RAM) which brings medical personnel to areas that have limited access. Some patients drove 200 miles to reach this clinic which provides both doctor and dentist service. All in all, "[RAM] treated 17,000 patients" last year.

In their recent event in Knoxville, TN, "RAM saw 920 patients, made 500 pairs of glasses, did 94 mammograms, extracted 1,066 teeth and did 567 fillings."

Watch and read the "60 Minutes" story HERE.

Visit RAM's website and read about their history HERE.

Monday, April 21, 2008

10 Things the Airlines' are Keeping From You

Smart Money magazine put together this report on the top 10 things the airlines' don't want their customers to know. Not only have passengers endured one of the worst years of flying in 2007, but the airlines' are attempting to collect more fees from passengers while cutting back on their services. The airlines' are trying every which way to get into passengers pockets by charging fees for thing like exit row seating, luggage and booking your flight.

In addition, the airlines' are not disclosing how many flights they are actually scheduling during peak hours at high traffic airports. "For example, there's room for 32 to 52 flights to leave New York's JFK airport between 8 and 9 a.m., but 57 are normally scheduled, automatically leading to delays, according to congressional testimony by the National Air Traffic Controllers Association."


Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Airlines' to Raise Fees on Children flying Solo

As if the Airlines' haven't already done enough to make traveling more difficult and harsher on passengers, the Seattle Times reports that some Airlines' are now planning to add fees on tickets for children who are flying alone.

The $50 service fee that flyers like Delta have charged for children flying alone, are now being doubled each direction a child flies! "The airline boosted its unaccompanied-minor fee — the charge to transport a child between the ages of 5-14 flying alone — from $50 to $100 each way on a nonstop flight..."

All of this, plus the Airlines' recent attempt to charge extra fees on passengers, such as a $25 fee for a second luggage and fees for making flight reservations over the phone; increases both the stress and burden on passengers.


Thursday, March 27, 2008

Airline Related Issues Tops Consumer Complaints

The U.S. Tour Operators Association released an "informal" member survey this week that cited airline related issues as the main source of travelers complaints.

"The association -- whose members send 11 million people on vacation yearly -- reported that over 70% of responding tour operators cited airline problems as the most common complaint, followed by money-related issues, reported by 20% of members."

Issues with delays and cancelations topped the list this year, and poor customer service was also cited as issues of customer complaints.

In a distant second were money related issues-such air fare, and added fees for services, which shows that passengers are more concerned with their safety and arriving to their destinations on time, instead of being stranded on the tarmac.

Click Here for Full Story

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The Alliance for Aviation Across America will attend the U.S. Chamber of Commerce 7th Annual Aviation Summit

The Alliance for Aviation Across America is pleased to announce that it will attend the 7th Annual Aviation Summit hosted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Chamber Foundation, and CIT Aerospace. This event will take place on April 3, 2008 at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington D.C.

Aviation's New Flight Plan: Innovation, Adaptation, and Consolidation. To view more information, visit the event website at:

Confirmed speakers include:
Dave Barger, Chief Executive Officer, JetBlue
Bob Bergman, Vice President of Corporate Public Affairs, UPS
Monte Belger, Vice President, Transportation Systems Solutions, Lockheed Martin Corporation
Jens Bischof, Vice President for the Americas, Deutsche Lufthansa AG
Alan Epstein, Vice President, Technology and Environment, Pratt & Whitney
Ed Bolen, Chief Executive Officer, National Business Aviation Association, Inc
Michael Lewis, Director, Air Traffic Management, Boeing Commercial Airplanes
Charles Leader, Director, NexGen Joint Planning and Development Office
Greg Principato, President, Airports Council International, North America
Nancy Young, Vice President, Environmental Affairs, Air Transport Association

This year's summit will explore key issues facing the aviation industry including global trends, the economic impacts of consolidation, energy efficiency, environmental concerns, and technological innovations.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Airlines Set Traffic Record Last Year

2007 was the year of the airline delay...and the full plane. Airlines carried 769.4 million domestic and international passengers in 2007, a 3.3% increase from the year prior. This coincided with the 2nd worst year for airline delays.

Planes were nearly 80% full on average over the year.

BusinessWeek breaks down the numbers and discusses the problems with Southwest Airlines in their article HERE.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Organizations sign letter urging reauthorization legislation

Thrity-five different organizations signed a letter on Tuesday urging the Senate to pass a long-term FAA reuthorization bill before the June 30th deadline. The coalition stated: "It is critical for Congress to recognize how important aviation is to our economy and to complete the FAA reauthorization process."

Signers of the letter included the National League of Cities, the National Association of Counties, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, National Conference of State Legislatures, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, American Association of Airport Executives, National Business Aviation Association, Air Line Pilots Association, Airport Consultants Council, Aerospace Industries Association, Air Carrier Association of America, National Association of State Aviation Officials, National Air Traffic Controllers Association, National Air Transport Association, General Aviation Manufacturers Association, and the Cargo Airline Association.

Read the article HERE.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Airline Service, A la carte

As general aviation pilots know, the airlines have working to use the FAA Reauthorization bills to give themselves a tax break. At the same time, they are stranding passengers, delaying flights, and overscheduling airports to the point that operations grind to a halt. Showing more disregard for passengers, select airlines are now charging $25 for a second bag - one that used to be free.

The Arizona Republic looked at the ways many airlines are nickel and dimeing passengers for each little component of their journey.

"United charges for seats with extra leg room. It costs passengers $5 extra to book a flight on US Airways' Web site. Northwest charges $25 for certain passengers to fly standby. Southwest offers priority boarding to its business-select passengers, for a fee."

Read the rest of the article HERE.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Passenger complaints about flights up 75.6% since 2007

It appears that the Airlines' are taking their passengers on more than just a ride as passengers complaints in the first month of this year rose to over 74% compared to this time last year. The study, conducted monthy by the bureau of transportation statistics finds that "overall complaints about flights, customer service and other problems rose 75.6 percent, the government said Tuesday."

The report also stated that at 27.6 percent of the flights in January of 2008 were at least 15 minutes late upon arrival, up 1 percent from January of last year's 26.6 percent.

And while the Airlines' continue to blame weather related issues for thier delays, Tulsa World quotes Scott Shankland, an American pilot and spokesman for the Allied Pilots Association, saying that despite what the carriers' are saying, "the delays are increasingly caused by the unreliability of aircraft because of mechanical problems." And he goes on to say that "mechanical cancellations are running at historically high levels."

And as we head into the busy summer travel season, delays will clearly continue to affect travelers across the nation.


Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Emergency Pilots at Risk Under Airline Proposal

With the extension for FAA reauthorization passed and the new deadline set for June 30th, it's might be easy to become more passive about the issue of the possibility of new fees on general aviation. That's not the attitude Keith Laken of Peoria's LifeLine Pilots is succumbing to. In a guest column in the Peoria Journal-Star, Mr. Laken details the impact any new taxes would have on emergency pilots. Mr. Laken's group fliers terminally ill patients to hospitals and treatment centers where they have access to life-saving procedures and medicines.

Mr. Laken writes: "These pilots, who fund missions out of their own pockets, may not be able to afford Lifeline service.With about two flights taking off every day during the week, an absence of pilots would really harm those who depend on them."

It is essential that we keep shining the spotlight on pilots like Mr. Laken and his volunteers to ensure that their valuable service is kept intact.

Click here to read Mr. Laken's column.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Coming soon: "Cattle cars in the sky"

According to a Cincinnati Enquirer article on Sunday, domestic flights will be more packed than usual given the possible mergers and airlines' attempts to cut costs. The article details a litany of problems that will arise from the airlines attempting to pad their bottomline. From cuts on frequent flier miles to fewer available flights, fliers may face a less friendly traveling atmosphere in the coming months.

The article states, " Even if there aren't mergers, the average U.S. flyer will see the trends of crowded aircraft and rising ticket prices continue if fuel costs remain high."

Long story short, with the airlines looking out for their pocketbooks, passengers are going to take a hit.

Read the entire article HERE.

Friday, February 22, 2008

AAAA Statement on FAA Extension

Below is the Alliance for Aviation Across America's statement regarding the extension for FAA Reauthorization.

Press Release
For Immediate Release
February 22, 2008

Alliance for Aviation Across America Renews Call for Comprehensive FAA Reauthorization Bill

Washington D.C. - In light of Congress’ recent decision to extend FAA funding to June 30th, the Alliance for Aviation Across America (AAAA) today issued the following statement:

“While we are pleased that Congress has ensured that funding for crucial FAA priorities is not jeopardized by passing a short-term extension, we once again urge Congress to pass a comprehensive proposal for FAA reauthorization. This will guarantee funding for important projects at small airports around the country, and also that we can get down to the important issue of modernizing of our air traffic control system once and for all. We continue to support a bill for reauthorization that will provide this necessary funding for FAA reauthorization while protecting small businesses and rural communities across the country that depend on general aviation.”


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

FAA Reauthorization Deadline Extended

Last week, both the House and the Senate voted to extended the deadline for FAA Reauthorization to June 30, 2008. Their goal is to use the extension to finalize a four-year plan for reauthorization and get the funds we need to modernize our air traffic control system.

We understand Congress' need to extend the deadline and applaud them for their hours of work on the issue. We urge Congress to finalize the multi-year plan in this time order to get to the business of modernization.

For more information, read Helicopter Association International's article on the extension HERE.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Representatives Stand Up For HR 2881

In a USA Today guest opinion piece, Representatives Jim Oberstar (D-MN) and Jerry Costello (D-IL) defended the merits of HR 2881. Detailing the flaws in the administration's user fee proposal, the Representatives showed the true benefits behind the current fuel tax structure, stating "The current tax and financing system has accommodated the enormous growth of American aviation over the past 30 years, and it can continue to do so."

Representatives Oberstand and Costello and other involved members have spend hours engaging in debate, testimony, and hearings on the best way to move our air traffic control system into the digital age. In their Op-Ed, they stated: "Five months ago, the House passed a comprehensive, viable FAA reauthorization bill that maintains the current revenue structure and increases the funds for air traffic modernization and airport improvements."

We must continue to move forward with the positive legislation that has been drafted and ensure that we have the funding to move forward with a bill that will keep our nation's aviation industry strong.

Read the Op-Ed HERE.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

"If there is a hint of bad weather anywhere, that will be used as the excuse"

In this article, Christopher Elliot uncovers the truth about weather and flight delays. Passengers who were duped by the airlines' into thinking that weather was the primary cause of their late departure, think again. The truth is that the airlines' consider bad weather occuring anywhere in the system an "act of God." This is because if a flight is delayed by "bad weather," the airlines are not liable for montary compensation to passengers if a flight has been delayed by weather.

Blaming the weather has become "a giant loophole that the airline likes to fly through." Currently, the airlines' do not face any formal audit by the FAA if a flight has been delayed due to weather, its all based on the "honor system." This in turn, gives the airlines a golden ticket to claim mild weather conditions as causes for delays.

Elliot writes "next time an airline says your flight is canceled because of the weather, don't bother looking out your window. Because what you see doesn't really matter."


Wednesday, February 6, 2008

The Pain of Flying

This MSNBC article goes into depth about what passengers can do to protect themselves and their personal belongings while flying in 2008. While passengers are still left with the bad taste in thier mouths from the record flight delays and mishandled luggage of last year, its no wonder why this has caused concern amoung passengers.

Only 73.4 percent of airplanes met their destinations on time, while at least 4.4 million bags where misplaced. That's "equivalent to one bag going astray on every full 737-700 flight during the year." And at least 64,000 passengers were "bumped" involuntarily off their flights last year. This is up over 8 percent from the previous year!

With last years horrible on-time performance and customer service by major carriers, all you can do is prepare for the worse "since 2008 is already looking sketchy."

Click Here to Read the Article

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Flight Delays Worst Since 2000

2007 saw the worst flight delays over the course of the year since the year 2000. December's on-time performance of 64.3% brought the yearly on-time average to 73.4%. Citing holiday traffic and poor weather, the airlines brought their performance to the lowest since they endured a 72.6% on-time average in 2000.

Reports of mishandled baggage and customer complaints each rose from 2006, with customer complaints surging by 40%.

Bloomberg stated that "the number of flights that were late at least 70% of the time more than doubled to 921."

It is clear that the airlines have shown no committment to making the situation any better for air travelers and with no signs of stopping from the airline companies, delays will only increase. It is time for the airlines to take responsibility for their roles in aerospace congestion and for them to take active steps to remedy it.

Read the Bloomberg article on 2007 delays HERE.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Protect Small Businesses in Nevada

We wanted to pass on an article from one of our members that appeared in the Reno Gazette last week. Written by Mr. Neil Weaver, this guest opinion column details the importance general aviation has on small towns throughout Nevada.

Mr. Weaver also details the pressing need to move forward with the bill. Because we have two fair bills in both houses of Congress, we must move quickly to begin the task of modernizing our air traffic control system.

Mr. Weaver concludes with the following: "All members of general aviation applaud the House and Senate for their dedication to modernizing our air-traffic control system and preserving a strong general aviation industry. Congress must now finish what they have started before legislative days are exhausted and ensure safe and secure skies for both commercial and general aviation aircraft."

Read the entire column HERE.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Steven Rosenblum Is Dead On!

Steve Resenblum in a letter to the Chicago Daily Herald nails the airlines for their deceptive practices.

The Chicago Daily Herald

Weather an excuse for O'Hare delays

How often do we hear about canceled flights at O'Hare due to weather ("Fog, high winds ground some flights at O'Hare," Daily Herald, Jan. 8.)?

Somehow, this seems like almost a daily excuse being used by airlines at O'Hare who have double or triple booked departure times (how many flights can leave at exactly the same moment from the same airport anyway?).

Last Sunday, as I took my parents to O'Hare, their flight was delayed a couple of hours due to "weather." When I inquired, I was told it was due to fog and low clearance. As I approached O'Hare and peered out my window at the sun breaking through the mid-level clouds, I wondered, "What on earth are they talking about?" I guess "on earth" was what they were talking about, as it was just another excuse for air traffic congestion and poor scheduling across the system.

When I spoke with the person at the airline ticket counter, she explained that "If you really want to depart or arrive in Chicago on time, you should go through Midway."

Why is this? Is it really that far from O'Hare to MidwayThis seems to be an airport problem. So please stop blaming the weather.

Steven Rosenblum


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Study Shows Multiple Carriers are Prone to Flight Delays

It seems like these days you cannot escape a flight delay while flying. But that may not exactly be a coincidence. In this article, the Wall Street Journal reports that flight delays are not caused by a case by case scenario, in fact, government data finds that multiple carriers contribute in one way or another to persistent flight delays nationwide.

Major airline carriers have continuously over-scheduled flights traveling into and out of our nation’s busiest airports, which inhibits flights from departing on time. In 2007 alone, “the number of flights with taxi-out times of more than three hours totaled 1,598 for the first 11 months, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics.”

The Wall Street Journal says that, "what we do know is that of those taxi-out problems for planes waiting to take off, they often are bunched up at a few big hub airports." This causes disomfort to passengers and leaves them stranded on planes, sometimes for hours at a time, before taking off.

To read more CLICK HERE

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Business Travelers Want Airlines To Be Accountable For Delays

According to a survey done by Directravel, travelers want the airlines to 'fess up to their role in delays. In the face of airline press releases and continuous attacks against the general aviation community, passengers aren't buying it. 46% of respondants said that delays over 1 hour by the airlines were unacceptable. The most telling statistic was "more than 80% feel airlines should provide a sliding scale refund if flights are late."

Since airline overscheduling has been commonplace for many airline companies, passengers are now demanding the airlines take responsibility and change to fit their customers rather than catering to their bottom line.

Read the rest of the survey HERE.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Meterologist says Airlines' are Playing the Weather Card when it comes to Delays

The heap of evidence just keeps on mounting up against the Airlines' and their excuses about flight delays. A forensic meteorologist, Howie Altschule, is an "expert witness" when it comes to tracking down bad weather. He claims that, "I do believe that bad weather is sometimes being used as an excuse for delays or cancellations when it really was not." If fact, Altschule says that the Airlines' are indifferent and "don't mind flying" near or around bad weather storms.

The problem with flying these days is that the airlines' are not being held accountable for delayed flights that they say occur due to "bad weather." Currently there is no system in place that verifies whether or not bad weather is the real cause for delayed flights and as you would expect, the airlines are using this to their advantage by leaving passengers stranded on tarmacs and putting the bill on the backs of its passengers!

Click HERE.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Encouraging Remarks

As the aviation community waits to hear the next step in the FAA reauthorization, is it encouraging to read comments like the following from Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL): "User fees are dead."

With the progress Congress has made in the past few months, we here at the Alliance would like to extend our thanks to all of the Senators and Representatives for their time and attention.

But like Phil Boyer of AOPA, we don't want to let our guard down until the last bill without user fees has been signed. We know that the airlines are investing a great deal of time and energy to keep user fees on the backs of general aviation. With positive voices like Senator Nelson's, we know that we are moving in the right direction. The Alliance will continue to closely monitor the workings of the Senate to make sure our members are well informed about the nest steps in this process.

Read Phil Boyer's comments HERE.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

The Numbers Don't Lie

According to an "Access America" poll, about 55% of respondants cited airline or airport service as a source of travel-related frustration. About 41% of respondents are frustrated with security and safety issues. The Angry Traveler blog on the Los Angeles Times details out their vision for 2008 and they have joined the choir of people worried about airline on-time performance.

Read this entire article HERE.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

2008: Beware Business Travelers

Check out Daniel Grossman's post in USA Today's Business Traveler Blog about what 2008 holds in store for the business traveler

After experiencing the second worst travel year on record, with over 25 percent of flights being delayed and countless numbers of flights being canceled in 2007, Grossman predicts that travelers can expect much of the same from airlines’ in 2008.

Passengers in 2008 can not only expect to experience more time waiting for their flights in airport terminals, but will also face higher airfares in business class to rise. The reason he says, along with higher oil prices, airlines are going to begin cutting capacity between destinations.

Passengers can also expect less reservation space and elbow room in flight while traveling with the airlines’ because of their plan to increase the amount of passengers in domestic flights and limiting the amount of per day flights they fly.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Standing up for the little airport...

Representatives James Oberstar (D-MN) and Jerry Costello (D-IL) wrote an excellent guest column in today's edition of USA Today on the importance of small airports to rural communities.

While a great deal of attention is paid to large hub airports, small airports rarely get the credit they deserve. The truth is: without these airports, many small and rural communities wouldn't be able to get the goods and services they have come to depend on.

Many small businesses use small airports to access customers in areas that could take many hours or even days to access otherwise. Representative Oberstar and Costello said it best in their column when they stated: "Adding a four-hour round-trip drive to a business trip is simply unacceptable in today's fast-moving, global economy. Otherwise attractive rural communities will lose out to already-congested cities..."

As our readers know, we here at the Alliance feel it is important to highlight the efforts of the volunteer pilots in organizations such as Angel Flight. But without these small airports, these pilots wouldn't be able to access the patients that need their help. If they can no longer get access, what will the patients do? Spend $500 on a round-trip airfare on a plane that may be delayed, cancelled, or standed on the tarmac for hours on end?

Some patients need to go to a specific hospital, hundreds of miles away. Many cannot make the drive as many times as the treatment is needed because their medical expenses are draining their funds.

These airports are an essential lifeline to these small communities. They need to be kept intact so residents can continue to live their lives.

Read the USA Today article HERE.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Good Riddance 2007

Well for air travelers, 2007 was a year to forget; between the delays and lost baggage the airlines did more to to turn air travel from the most convenient mode of transportation to something to be avoided at all costs. Today's Washington Post does a good job of recapping the airlines' awful display of customer service and protection this past year.

We just want to let our readers know that all of us at the Alliance for Aviation Across America and the entire GA community will keep the pressure on the airlines to improve their service and to begin to treat their customers with respect.