The Detroit Free Press reports that Northwest’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Douglas Steenland, and Delta’s Chief Executive Officer, Richard Anderson, visited the newspaper’s office to answer questions about the Delta/Northwest merger and this is some of what they had to say:
Regarding the frequent flyer program: The Delta SkyMiles program “in all likelihood” will be the surviving program, although details have not been worked out. Steenland said, “everybody’s miles are good. If you earn miles today, they’re going to be good. Irrespective of what it’s called, it’s basically, everyone gets grandfathered in, everybody preserves what they had, their miles, their elite status, all of those things are just carried forward.”
Regarding the Web site: They would move quickly to a single Web site. The Northwest Web site is well-known to be the better of the two but there will be technical issues to deal with.
The two also talked about schedule: No big schedule changes and they believe the merger will help, not hurt, smaller markets. And airfare was discussed: Oil prices, not merger plans, are driving the cost of flights. They said that if oil prices don’t come down, airfares and fees may continue to rise this year and that airlines might also have to continue to cut capacity for more efficiency.