Airline CEOs take action

Alex Morss
Alex Morss
Peter Kaina
Peter Kaina

By Walter Makaula - bio | email

(KHNL) -- Cutbacks, layoffs, and added fees are definitely signs of turbulent times for the airline industry.

With soaring fuel costs taking a major toll on airlines, the heads of some of the largest carriers are turning to their own customers to help them find a way to stay in business.

CEO's from twelve of the largest airlines sent out an email message to their frequent travellers, asking them to urge congress to step in and help.

The company leaders want law makers to restore and enforce limits on unchecked oil , market speculation, and manipulation. Among those top CEO's is Mark Dunkerly of Hawaiian Airlines

In a statement today he said, "Speculation in oil has become a major factor in artificially driving up prices , and we support the effort to curtail this practice that allows speculators to profit at the expense of consumers."

Passengers flying on Hawaiian couldn't agree more.

"The fares have gone up substantially and the airlines are sort of increasing other things on the side so they don't have to raise prices," said Alex Morss of Boston, Massachusetts. "You have to pay more for your baggage and you have to pay more for your food."

"I don't think that's fair because we're already paying high price for it.

I think they should feed us if we're going to California, " said Peter Kaina of Makawao. "If it's inter island then that's fine, It's already expensive just to fly from Maui to Oahu."

Airlines arcoss the country are taking dramatic steps to lighten their loads.

US Airways just announced it's removing its in-flight entertainment systems on its domestic flights to drop 500 pounds. This year, seven airlines have gone out of business, and two more are in bankuptcy protection. The airlines want congress to step in and help control its biggest expense -- fuel!

But many say congressional intervention is highly unlikely.

Several bills are already floating around congress calling for market reforms, but so far there's been very little action.