Skybus has just announced that it will stop flying starting tomorrow, Saturday April 5th. “Skybus struggled to overcome the combination of rising jet fuel costs and a slowing economic environment. These two issues proved to be insurmountable for a new carrier…Our financial condition is such that our Board of Directors felt it had no choice but to cease operations,” said the company in the tombstone posted on its website. The dream of ultra-low-budget air travel was too beautiful to let live…
Either that, or
the are-we-in-a-recession and the rise in fuel prices was too difficult an environment for a new airline with a new kind of pricing structure to take off. The way it tried to work was thus: Tickets started at $10 but prices went up as more passengers booked. Carry-on baggage was free but checked baggage incurred additional fees, as did a slew of other basic amenities. To capitalize on in-flight profit potential, outside food or drink was strictly forbidden, stewards sold everything from food to perfume to watches, and advertisements covered every surface, including the outside of the aircraft. Maybe Americans just aren’t ready for a “strap me to a high-velocity rail” approach to air travel. This marks the fourth airline to stop, or announce they will soon stop, flying this week.
(Photo: Derek Rust)