With the price of gas climbing every day, it’s not surprising that airplanes, one of the most expensive and fuel-guzzling forms of transportation, would become evermore expensive for the corporations that run them and the customers that ride the planes.
Most major airlines have decided to deal with their nearly doubled annual costs by cutting down on the weight of their planes. Fuel is now the #1 expense in maintaining airplanes, with labor close behind. So, to cut down on weight, airlines are replacing things like the glassware in first class seating to lighter plastic cups, and US Airways is now using meal carts that are 12 pounds lighter than the old ones.
American Airlines, well known for their cost-chopping attempts, has removed nearly every conceivable ounce of extra weight, however, they are also removing comfort and convenience features as well. They have removed in-seat phones and removed power converters from the lavatories. Airlines are also removing things such as magazine racks, trash compactors, and ovens. However, with all these lighter planes, the experience on board becomes worst and worst for the passengers, so airlines are constantly trying to find a compromise.