Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
September 21, 2014

Posts in "Travel"

September 19, 2014

A Look Back: Foreign Air Carrier Competition, Drones & Defective Cars

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We heard from both Reps. Bill Shuster, R-Pa., (left) and Sam Graves, R-Mo., this week on aviation policy. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

This week on The Container, we spent lot of time reporting on aviation but with some focus on highways and the vehicles that travel on them.

We told you that U.S. airlines, while making good profits recently, still haven’t gotten back to pre-recession passenger levels.

Full story

Analyst Decries ‘A Sense of Entitlement’ in Air Travelers

Hunter Keay Analyst Decries ‘A Sense of Entitlement’ in Air Travelers

Hunter Keay (Photo: Wolfe Research)

The most amusing analysis this week of how the airline business works or ought to work came from Wolfe Research investment analyst Hunter Keay who explained that travelers must be re-educated out of expecting something for nothing.

“Airlines have really struggled with managing down a sense of entitlement from the consumer, which is still a problem and that’s really going to take decades to go away,” Keay told an aviation conference in Washington.

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Mark Sanford Spars With TSA Official Over Those Lists

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Rep. Mark Sanford, R-S.C. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Mark Sanford, R-S.C., spoke for those Americans Thursday who are exasperated with all those lists that the Transportation Security Administration and other federal agencies keep to check up on airline passengers.

Sanford tussled with TSA Assistant Administrator Stephen Sadler at a hearing of the House Homeland Security Committee’s Transportation Security Subcommittee.

Full story

September 18, 2014

Allies Home to Fast-Growing Rivals for U.S. Air Carriers

AmericanAvEmir2 Allies Home to Fast Growing Rivals for U.S. Air CarriersSome United States allies in its struggle against the Islamic State are home to fast-growing airlines such as Etihad and Emirates competing with U.S. carriers. And that worries U.S. airlines.

A 1999 Open Skies agreement between the United States and the United Arab Emirates gives Etihad and Emirates access to U.S. airports.

Full story

House Unanimously Votes To Cut TSA Security Fees

Richard Hudson 3 020812 222x335 House Unanimously Votes To Cut TSA Security Fees

Rep. Richard Hudson, R-N.C., sponsored the fee rollback legislation (Photo By Douglas Graham/Roll Call)

Travel industry leaders are applauding a unanimous House vote Wednesday to roll back Transportation Security Administration fees.

The 2013 budget accord had increased the security-related fees to $5.60 per one-way trip. Previously, the fee had been $2.50 per enplanement (boarding a flight) with a cap of $10.

Full story

By Tom Curry Posted at 10:12 a.m.
Aviation, Budget, Travel

September 15, 2014

U.S. Airlines Still Not Quite Recovered To Their Pre-Recession Passenger Levels

emplanechart 445x322 U.S. Airlines Still Not Quite Recovered To Their Pre Recession Passenger Levels

Even with a recovering U.S. economy, domestic air travel has still not quite gotten back to its pre-recession levels.

The Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (Twitter: @TransportStatsreported Monday that U.S. airlines carried 59.2 million passengers on domestic flights. That compares to nearly 61.5 million domestic passengers in June of 2007. Full story

A Cautionary Tale About The Difficulty of Bringing Anti-Texting Technology To Market

In case you missed it, the New York Times on Sunday had a detailed account by Matt Richtel (Twitter: @mrichtel) of an entrepreneur and engineer named Scott Tibbitts who has spent five years devising a technology called Groove to prevent texting while driving — and thus save the lives of pedestrians and others killed by texting drivers.

Tibbitts and his company, Katasi, worked with Sprint and with American Family Insurance to make his technology available.

The story is a cautionary tale about the difficulty of bringing new technology to market. One impediment that has kept Katasi’s potentially life-saving device off the market: the companies’ potential legal liability if the technology weren’t 100 percent effective in blocking every single text.

September 12, 2014

Big Issues on the Horizon for Small Plane Manufacturers

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The new Cessna Longitude is scheduled for first delivery in 2017. (Image courtesy of Cessna)

Next year Congress must pass a bill to reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration. One industry with a lot at stake is general aviation, the companies that manufacture aircraft other than those flown by the military and scheduled commercial airlines.

Full story

September 11, 2014

Transportation Policy Guru Poole Voices Skepticism About Vehicle-To-Vehicle Technology

Robert Poole, co-founder of the Reason Foundation, has worked on transportation policy for more than three decades and is an influential voice on tolling, congestion pricing and infrastructure finance.

Vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) technology may some day allow cars to communicate with each other and with traffic infrastructure to avoid collisions.

Poole’s skepticism about this technology, which he explains in his monthly newsletter published this week, is worth reading.

Full story

How Global Business Travelers Are Coping In An Increasingly Perilous World

455040786 445x295 How Global Business Travelers Are Coping In An Increasingly Perilous World

Part of the wreckage of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 which was shot down over Ukraine on July 17. (Alexander KHUDOTEPLY/AFP/Getty Images)

We recently asked Global Business Travel Association (Twitter: @GlobalBTA ) executive director Michael W. McCormick for his views on how the last several month’s world events have affected business travelers.

Here’s the first part of that interview…. Full story

September 9, 2014

DOT Makes $950M Loan To Help Expand I-4 in Florida

4913387651 445x308 DOT Makes $950M Loan To Help Expand I 4 in Florida

Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx at a press conference last May (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said Tuesday that the Obama administration is making a $950 million loan to help rebuild and widen 21 miles of Interstate 4 in the Orlando, Fla., area.

My CQ Roll Call colleague John Boyd has the details here.

Full story

September 8, 2014

The Case Against Tolling Interstate Lanes

4701597351 445x297 The Case Against Tolling Interstate Lanes

Traffic moves along Interstate 80 in California (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The Alliance for Toll-Free Interstates is a coalition of state trucking associations and companies including FedEx and UPS that is trying to stop tolls from being imposed on currently toll-free parts of the interstate highway system.

Alliance spokesman Julian Walker gave us the group’s views.

Full story

With Transportation Investment Summit Set to Meet, Here’s the Case for Tolling

152366339 445x303 With Transportation Investment Summit Set to Meet, Here’s the Case for Tolling

Toll lane cameras at the Golden Gate Bridge toll plaza. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

On Tuesday, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx convene an infrastructure investment summit with private-sector investors.

One topic of discussion is likely to be the use of tolls to help pay for bond issues and as part of private equity deals to build bridges, highways, and tunnels.

Here’s a case for tolling, from our interview with Patrick D. Jones, executive director and CEO of the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association. Later today, we’ll run an opposing view. Full story

September 3, 2014

Near-Complete Aviation Cutoff Making It Even Harder to Control Ebola Outbreak

World Health Organization officials said Wednesday that Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone, the three countries hit hardest by the Ebola virus outbreak, are almost entirely cut off from international aviation and their near-isolation is making it difficult for outside agencies to help contain the outbreak.

“These three countries – they feel totally isolated,” Dr. Margaret Chan, the Director-General of World Health Organization, told reporters at a briefing Wednesday.

Full story

Foxx Rejects Norwegian Air International’s Interim Request for Low-Cost Transatlantic Service

Handing at least a temporary victory to organized labor, Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx on Tuesday rejected Norwegian Air International’s request for short-term permission to fly low-cost flights between European and U.S. airports.

Full story

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