US Airways, United Airlines Begin Merger Talks

In what is clearly an attempt to make it easier for us to think of stuff to write about for the Worst Company In America contest, the two remaining airlines, United and US Airways, have begun merger talks.

There is some speculation that United is just toying with US Airways in an attempt to make its real love, Continental, jealous.

“United has been standing at the altar waiting for the bride to show up and just got tired of waiting,” Mo Garfinkle, a longtime airline industry consultant, told the New York Times. “Maybe by flirting with another girl, it can get Continental’s attention again.”

A merger between US Airways and United Airlines, besides sucking for the obvious reasons, doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, says the NYT. The combined airlines would have too many hubs, and are not a natural fit.

Analysts would be much happier with a merger between United and Continental. We plan to ask a Continental customer for their thoughts as soon as we can find one who isn’t screaming.

The NYT says:

United and US Airways have come close to merging several times over the last decade. In 2000, they announced a $4.3 billion deal, only to withdraw after antitrust concerns from the Justice Department and fierce opposition from their unions. They tried again in 2008 but ended talks after several months of negotiations, that time in the face of opposition from United’s board as well as the pilots’ union.

We thought about contacting US Airways for comment, but there is probably a fee for that, and we’re cheap and brought our own comment from home to eat later.

United Is in Talks About a Merger With US Airways [NYT]