Independence Air Shutting Down

Fans of the low-fare
airline Independence Air will have to find a new carrier of choice. January 5, 2006
will be the last day of operation for the airlines and the last day of work for some 2,700 employees. According to this ABC News piece the carrier is in the process of
contacting passengers with round-trip tickets to see if they can return before the 7PM shutdown on Thursday. For those
who can’t, Independence Air will have to ask a bankruptcy court to give the refunds.

If you just purchased
an unbelievably low-cost ticket with the airlines and find your travel spirits starting to sink low, worry not. There
are still other options. Not the greatest options, but some options are better than no options and the other option is
to fly with an alternative U.S. airline operating on the same routes as Independence Air. Apparently there’s a nifty
federal law that came about after the September 11 terrorist attacks to protect airline passengers. These other
airlines are required to offer standby seats for $50 each way to passengers holding unrefunded tickets flying on the
same route. Better than nothing, but way to throw a wrench in the travel plans.