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The transport of passengers and goods from one destination to the other through the use of airplanes have greatly facilitated easy and fast mode of transportation in the modern world. Moreover, despite the increasing development of airline companies that increased the connection from one destination to the other, the choice of the hub location is influenced by a myriad of factors. Precisely, most airlines in the U.S and any other part of the world have their flight operations being based around a specific hub or hub system. In this connection there are two major categories of air cargo systems in the airline industry, and these categories are not limited to the passenger air transport system and the air cargo transport system (Sales, 2013). This paper pays high attention to the description of each of the air cargo system, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of each system.
The passenger air transport system
The passenger air transport system has been dominant in the airline industry, with numerous hub locations being established in various parts of the world. In the United States, the passenger air transport system deals with domestic and international scheduled service passengers, and the U.S. passenger air transport system carries an all time high of 895.5 million passengers, and this is according to the 2015 report that was released by the U.S. Department of Transportation`s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS). The American airline was leading in terms of the number of passengers that it transported in 2015, both in domestic and international flights (Bureau of Transport Statistics, 2015).
The air cargo transport system
The focus on air cargo transport system was rarely focused on before the start of the 21st century. However, with the development of globalization as well as the increased trend of lessening the trade and tariff barriers, the air cargo system has greatly increased in the recent past. According to the U.S Department of Commerce (1994), the growth of the air cargo industry has been much more rapid compared to the growth of the passenger industry. For example, the number of passengers enplaned during the onset of the 21st century on scheduled airlines increased by 24 percent, compared to 82 percent increase of the air freight and air express ton-miles (Bureau of Transport Statistics, 2016). The growth of the air cargo transport system could have also been contributed by the deregulation which occurred in 1977 (Sales, 2013). Currently, the air cargos are free to lower or raise rates, owe and operate trucks, and serve in any market that they choose. Due to this deregulation, most carriers are now taking advantage of the situation by exploiting the newly won freedoms of offering single carrier using both ground and air modes of transportation.
Advantages of passenger air transport system
There are numerous advantages of passenger air transport system. First, this mode of transport is fast, compared to the use of vehicles and water. Through this system, passengers manage to be transported from one point to the other within few hours, and this helps in ensuing economic growth is achieved. Actually, passenger air transport system is one of the major contributing factors of economic growth. Consecutively, this mode of transportation is free from physical barriers, and this means that the time set for the aircraft to reach the destined destination can be established beforehand (Mehta, 2017). For example, if an airplane is leaving Los Angeles heading to Canada, the amount of time that it can take from the two destinations can be known before the airplane leaves the Los Angeles airport. This helps the passengers to organize themselves in advance in terms of the time and day that they are going to reach their intended destinations. This system is further divided into economy and business class, and this means that passengers can choose the class to travel in, based on their economic status and comfort ability.
The passenger air transport is costly, compared to any other mode of transport. This means that passengers who use this system must dig deeper into their pockets in order to enjoy the service. The operational costs of this system is high, and coupled with the fact that the system is fast contributes to high prices for its services. Moreover, this system has a high number of risks, including hijacking of planes; a small mistake can result to accidents, and in case of an accident, almost all lives on board do perish.
Advantages of air cargo system
There are a myriad of advantages of air cargo system. First, this system is fast, and this means that perishable goods such as fish, meat, vegetables, and fruits can easily be conveyed from one destination to the other within few hours. This is very important especially in enhancing trade between countries. Consecutively, this system has been made easier especially through the deregulation, which took place in 1977 (Gibbons, 1982).
Not all forms of cargo can be transported by this system, especially due to the fact that some forms of cargo such as petrol are risky. Others are too heavy to be transported through this method. In addition, despite the deregulation of the cargo system, there increased uncertainties in this system, such as safety regulations and this hinders most operations in this system (Pushparaj, 2017).
Bureau of Transport Statistics, (2015). 2015 U.S.-Based Airline Traffic Data. Retrieved from, https://www.rita.dot.gov/bts/press_releases/bts018_16
Bureau of Transport Statistics, (2016). Airlines and Airports. Retrieved from, https://www.bts.gov/topics/airlines-and-airports
Gibbons J., (1982). Impact of advanced Air Transport Technology. The air cargo system. Retrieved from, https://www.princeton.edu/~ota/disk3/1982/8231/8231.PDF
Mehta p., (2017). Air Transport: Advantages and Disadvantages. Retrieved from, http://www.economicsdiscussion.net/articles/air-transport-advantages-and-disadvantages/2179
Pushparaj A., (2017). What are the advantages and disadvantages of air transport? Retrieved from, http://www.publishyourarticles.net/knowledge-hub/business-studies/what-are-the-advantages-and-disadvantages-of-air-transport/824/
Sales M., (2013). The Air Logistics Handbook: Air Freight and the Global Supply Chain. Routledge (Taylor and Francis Group), London.