US Airways Merger Making Converts of Skeptics Impressed With Progress

The company's stock, which started trading in September at $20 a share, closed Friday at $33.26.

"It doesn't appear to make much sense for us," Mr. Parker said.

Mr. Kirby added that the airline believes North Texas residents are simply used to traveling from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, not Love Field.

US Airways' merger is far from complete, and it's seen its share of bumps.

The carrier had to fire 22 ground workers recently after a union fight broke out in Philadelphia over how the two workforces would integrate.

Published reports said chairs were thrown in the fight, and airline labor experts have said more skirmishes might erupt as employees battle for seniority in the new carrier.

The two carriers' technology systems are far from integrated, but should yield $100 million in annual savings.

"Right now I feel like Noah - I've got two of everything," said Joe Beery, chief information officer.

Still, savings from combining the two carriers is greater than expected, approaching $300 million annually instead of the $250 million originally predicted.

Revenue is also exceeding last year's projections, helped by a sharp reduction in capacity by competitors to give remaining carriers much more pricing power.

"We're not here to declare victory yet," Mr. Parker said. "But we've really come a long way in short time."


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