U.S. Airways Reinstates Complimentary Beverages

With the recent American focus on economic hardships, U.S. Airways has come up with a new way to help its travelers pinch a much-needed penny or two.

The airline will discontinue its “beverage purchase program,” which charged passengers $1 for coffee and tea and $2 for soda, juice, and bottled water, as of March 1. CEO Douglas Parker stated in a press release that the change is occurring because it puts the company at a disadvantage in comparison to large airlines that offer complimentary beverages.

“While oil prices have dropped, a global recession is having a material negative impact on industry revenues and our industry still needs business model changes as much as ever,” Parker noted.

The revenue loss from the removal of a la carte services will be so insignificant that the airline will not likely need to increase ticket prices. Despite discontinuing this extra fee, the airline still plans to make $400 – $500 million per year by charging for checked baggage, premium seats, blankets, and pillows.