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No Frills: The Truth Behind the Low-cost Revolution in the Skies Paperback – 8 May 2003

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Product details

  • Paperback: 326 pages
  • Publisher: Virgin Books; New edition (8 May 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0753507706
  • ISBN-13: 978-0753507704
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 2.5 x 19 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 746,252 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

'Everything you need to know about slumming it in the skies' -- Evening Standard

'I'm glad Simon Calder was around to record the greatest upheavals in travel since the jet engine' -- Stelios Haji-Ioannou, founder of easyJet

About the Author

Simon Calder is senior travel correspondent of The Independent, a contributing editor of Conde Nast Traveller, a columnist for BA's inflight magazine 'High Life', and a frequent BBC radio and television presenter.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A. Gallamore on 20 Oct. 2003
Format: Hardcover
i've used this book as research for my dissertation, but actually found it a compelling read that would entertain people with only an inkling of interest in the budget airline industry
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By JamesB on 17 Nov. 2004
Format: Paperback
An excellent book, splitting out the various no frills approaches into chapters. Recommended for anyone looking to go into the industry, lots of useful facts for interviews! Or would make excellent reading for a Business case study.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Shazrul on 20 May 2002
Format: Hardcover
Simon Calder has done a marvellous job investigating what no frills flying is really about. He reveals how air mavericks like easyJet, Ryanair and Go fight it with the big boy i.e. BA. Upon finishing this book, the reader will realise that running a no-frills airline is so much more than making passengers pay for that pack of sandwich mid air.
No Frills : The Truth Behind The Low Cost Revolution In The Skies does not delve directly into the operational strategies behind Europe's three (now two with go's acquisition by easyJet) most successful low-cost airlines. Instead, it first sets the background behind the whole idea of no-frills flying. The book explains the origin of the no frills concept, the numerous attempts by various entrepreneur and its fair number of failures.
Having prepared the reader with sufficient background on the industry, Simon Calder goes in depth on each low-cost airline. He keeps the reader entertained by revealing the amusing skirmishes and tussles behind the scenes. The charismatic and eccentricity of industry figureheads such as Branson, O'Leary, Jeans, Webster, Stelios and Cassani have indeed made Calder's job easier. EasyJet's orange and Branson's stunts aside, this book confirms that, shying lassitude rewards the industry.
The book is suitable as both, leisure reading material or as a source of inspiration to the budding entrepreneur.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By "stevenrowe4" on 25 July 2003
Format: Paperback
I think this book is excellent! It is very informative and gives all of the history related to low cost carriers! I couldn't put the book down until I was finished it all!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Robert Morris TOP 500 REVIEWER on 23 Sept. 2005
Format: Paperback
Having lived and worked in Dallas since 1976, I am among those who heavily depend upon Southwest Airlines for both business and personal airline transportation, and, who feel great respect as well as affection for its former CEO, Herb Kelleher. It was thus with special interest, indeed eagerness that I began to read Calder's book in which he carefully examines each of those European airlines which are obviously in great debt (both philosophically and operationally) to "Herb" and his unique airline. It is important to remember, however, that imitation may be the highest form of flattery but there is far more involved in approximating Southwest's success than many may assume. According to Kelleher, "You can get the same airplane. You can get the same ticket counters.  You can get the same computers. But the hardest thing for a competitor to match is your culture and the spirit of your people and their focus on customer service because that isn't something you can do overnight and it isn't something you can do without a great deal of attention every day in a thousand different ways. That is why I say that our employees are our competitive protection."
That is precisely why David Neeleman and his JetBlue associates continue to commit so much of their resources to identifying, interviewing, hiring, and then training new "crewmembers," NOT "employees" nor even "associates." Long before Neeleman went to work for Southwest, he recalls a conversation with Kelleher. According to Neeleman, Kelleher said "I don't care about my shareholders." Neeleman was shocked. What did he mean? Was Kelleher really serious? "Because I just take care of my employees. I know if I take care of my employees, they'll take care of my customers, and my customers will take care of my shareholders.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 1 Feb. 2004
Format: Hardcover
A good introduction to the history and operating environment of low-cost carriers, but without offering many greater insights beyond what's already known to the travelling public. The early chapters, offering potted histories of several low-cost airlines is (to my mind) nothing more than a cobbled together cut-and-paste summary typical of a Sunday newspaper.
That said, this is a lively read, and despite its praise for low-cost carriers which at times borders on the blinkered this is a good start for the amateur enthusiast or an industry worker. Just be aware that the book's publisher is Virgin - so don't expect a complete balance!..
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