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Flying the Family Friendly Skies

SS Member Image By drodriguez 09.24.08
Flying the Family Friendly Skies
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The phrases family friendly and the airline industry do not often find their way in the same sentence.  It is difficult enough to travel alone as an adult, especially if you add on flight delays, cancellations, layovers, etc.  But to be confined in a cramped seat for hours with nothing to do but look at a Sky Mall can be downright impossible for a small child. 


With rising fuels costs, the airlines seem to be worrying less about a passenger’s comfort and more about trying to make a profit.  One company, which claims to have a different take on the whole idea of air travel, is Family Airlines.  Earlier this year, Family Airlines submitted an application to fly with the DOT (Department of Transportation). 


The Las Vegas based company is still in the beginning stages and waiting for approval before they can begin sending flights out.  According to their website, Family Airlines would target families as well as travelers on a budget.  Their fares would be drastically lower than most airlines, boasting coast-to-coast one-way tickets for $69 and shorter trips for just $19. 


The airline also plans to open a “family section” designed specifically for passengers traveling with children.  So when your four year old decides he needs to go to the bathroom for the third time in ten minutes, fellow passengers from the “family section” would probably be more sympathetic than most.


Family Airlines founder and CEO Barry Michaels explains how the airline plans to make money while offering such low cost fares, “While the primary source of revenue for most airlines is passenger ticket sales the Family Airlines strategy will depend on the development of alternative profit centers to generate additional sources of revenue.”  This means they will rely heavily on extra purchases like food, drinks, movies, video games, and email access.



What do you think of the idea of a more family friendly airline?


Do you think Family Airlines’ business model will work if it receives approval from the DOT?

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  • armywife98 By armywife98

    I think that this is a wonderful idea. At least then you can spend more on the actual vacation versus the airfare. This is especially helpful for large families.

  • Mamato5 By Mamato5

    Sounds like a great idea!!

  • MS_Cat By MS_Cat

    This sounds GREAT! With lower cost fares and NO scrowling passengers,I would be less afraid of buying drinks for the children(lids would be great) and the more trips to the bathroom that comes along with them. Even if I am going without the kids ( which doesnt happen often,but who knows I just may do it!) I would have no objection to being in a family airplane. This also could mean that we could afford more family trips.

  • michieshell By michieshell

    I absolutely love this idea. I am a frequent flier and I have been finding it much more difficult lately to afford the airfare (not to mention the luggage fees etc) I would definitely take advantage of these reduced fares and don't mind travelling with children :)))

  • grammasue50 By grammasue50

    I also agree this is an interesting concept. I extend best wishes to any airline that tries to introduce "family friendly prices", too.

  • misseltoe By misseltoe

    I like the idea of being able to afford an airplane ticket. We are going home for Thanksgiving and since my daughter will be 2 when the trip takes place we would have to buy a ticket. For all three of us it is going to be $2000. We simply can't afford that so we are having to drive, which will still be expensive since we have to rent a car and of course the gas!

    On the kid front, I flew once with my husband and baby last year, and once with the baby alone. Everyone was super friendly. We were seated in the back, and the plane wasn't completely full, so that may have helped. But my baby didn't fuss very often and when she did the engines were louder. When I flew with her alone she slept the entire flight. The ENTIRE flight. I can't tell you how happy I was as I was pretty nervous. Oh, I also nursed during both flights, and for the one where I was alone with her I was in the front of the plane. Never did anyone say anything. A few months later I read some horrible experiences of other nursing moms and found out that I was maybe lucky that no-one was rude to me.

  • vickles711 By vickles711

    I would really love to see this work. If they offer these deals then I would for sure book through them.

  • jenrik06 By jenrik06

    I love to fly but it's hard to do with the kids. Sounds like this has great potential if marketed and managed properly. I'm actually surprised none of the other airlines have thought of this before. Many businesses are getting revenue from all sorts of places these days instead of the mainstream customer. It would be REALLY great if they fly to a lot of different cities. The airlines with cheaper rates tend to stay with only certain flight patterns. We happen to live a considerable distance from popular routes so it's hard to find a cheap rate. I wonder if they'll have a mini playground in their terminal? lol

  • jen_taylor By jen_taylor

    I would absolutely LOVE that. I am def. the kind of person who doesn't really like children. So when i fly and see parents just letting their children do whatever they want, and don't have control of them it REALLY annoys me. May sound kind of mean... but if all the children would be on a different plane, let alone different airport i would be EXTREMELY happy :)

  • jcwilson517052 By jcwilson517052

    I think it is a great idea. We fly back home every year & it gets harder & harder as the children grow. Three hours on a plane ride is not fun for anyone. Especially when you are surrounded with people who don't have little children.

    We like to fly through atlanta aiport. They have a big slide in terminal B I believe. We always try to allow enough time for them to play & get worn out before we have to get on our connecting flight.

    Plus I love the fares.

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