Northwest to Pay Some Passenger Facility Charges

PRNewswire-FirstCall ST. PAUL, Minn. Nov. 25 :

Northwest Airlines announced today that effective immediately, it will
selectively reduce the cost of travel by $9 roundtrip for many passengers
by paying some of the passenger facility charges (PFC), rather than adding
the full amount of the fees to passenger tickets.

This action will benefit many customers with travel plans that take them
through the airline`s Minneapolis/St. Paul and the WorldGateway at Detroit
PFCs are fees levied by airports to cover airport maintenance and
improvement. They are not required by law although the federal government
permits airports that wish to impose such fees to charge up to $4.50 per
enplaned passenger flight segment. The airports at Minneapolis/St. Paul
and Detroit apply the full $4.50 charge while some airports that serve as
major airline hubs, including Houston`s George Bush Intercontinental,
Charlotte, N.C.`s Douglas International, and Memphis, Tenn.`s Memphis
International, do not assess any PFCs. Newark, N.J.`s Newark Liberty
International and Pittsburgh International assess PFCs of $3 per enplaned

Prior to this action, a passenger who might be traveling on a connecting
flight from Washington, D.C. to San Diego, through Detroit, would have
paid more than a passenger on a competitor that offers a connection
through Charlotte, N.C. or Pittsburgh, even if the airlines had published
the same fares. Given the highly competitive airline industry environment,
where even small price differences will influence customer purchase
decisions, Northwest decided to pay the PFC to remain competitive with
other airline hubs.
Northwest will continue to collect all of the federally-required segment
fees of $3 per flight segment.

Northwest Airlines is the world`s fourth largest airline with hubs at
Detroit, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Memphis, Tokyo and Amsterdam and more than
1,500 daily departures. With its travel partners, Northwest serves nearly
750 cities in almost 120 countries on six continents. In 2002, consumers
from throughout the world recognized Northwest`s efforts to make travel
easier. A 2002 J.D. Power and Associates study ranked airports at Detroit
and Minneapolis/St. Paul, home to Northwest`s two largest hubs, tied for
second place among large domestic airports in overall customer
satisfaction. Business travelers who subscribe to OAG print and electronic
flight guides rated as the best airline Web site. Readers of TTG
Asia and TTG China named Northwest “Best North American airline.”