I’ve been an American Airlines elite frequent flier member for almost 7 years. I started with a Platinum challenge and I was hooked ever since. With the recent US Airways merger with American Airlines, they are both still operating as separate companies. I’ve flown with US Airways since the merger and it’s been disappointing so far. Here are 10 things I hate about US Airways since the recent American Airlines merger:
1. The food on US Airways sucks – It’s a shame US Airways serves inedible food on their flights. I’ve flown four US Airways segments since the merger and here’s some of the recent food I’ve been served:
2. Snack baskets will be replacement meals – US Airways doesn’t want to serve full meals anymore on short flights so they’ve resorted to adding more snack baskets. I recently wrote Snack Baskets Will Be a Common Sight on American Airlines and US Airways.
3. No Same Day Standby or Confirm for a later flight – I can’t believe US Airways doesn’t let their elites (or anyone for that matter) to same day confirm or standby for a later flight. Every major US carrier (Delta Air Lines and United) lets their members have the option to take a later flight. If you want to take a later flight, be prepared to pay a huge change fee and fare difference.
4. You can only Same Day Confirm (MoveUp) for an earlier flight 6 hours before your original scheduled flight – Most major airlines have a 24 hour policy and US Airways only gives you a 6 hour lead time. By the way, US Airways won’t let you MoveUp to a nonstop flight if you have a 1+ connection flight even if space is available. All segments must have available space in order to MoveUp which is a shame.
5. You can’t Same Day Confirm (MoveUp) over the phone – US Airways agents will not let you same day confirm for an earlier flight over the phone. They specifically tell you to physically visit the airline counter at the airport. Well, by the time you get to the airport, the space could very well be gone! Other major carriers like Delta and United will let you do it over the phone and sometimes even on their mobile apps!
6. You can’t MoveUp to an earlier flight on an award ticket – The US Airways website doesn’t specify same day confirm changes for an earlier flight on award tickets and it’s a little ambiguous. A nominal fee ($75 for flights within the United States, Latin America, the Caribbean and Canada. It’s $150 to move up on flights to/from Europe, Israel and/or South America) is charged for non-elites and it’s complimentary for US Airways or American Airlines frequent flyer elite members. It is possible to MoveUp to an earlier flight if you can a nice airport counter agent or US Airways Club agent, but don’t be surprised if they don’t since it’s not official policy. They might be nice and let you Same Day Standby for an earlier flight though.
7. Credit Card hawking in the airport – I’ve noticed today that US Airways employees have been hawking the US Airways World Mastercard over the speakerphone at LAX. This is in conjunction with boarding calls from agent agents. I really dislike the practice of credit card hawking over the loudspeaker. Other airlines have a specific booth within the terminal where potential passengers can apply without using the overhead loudspeaker.
8. Credit Card hawking on the plane – US Airways really pushes the credit card hard on the plane. They promise free round-trip tickets to passengers for the price of the annual fee. “How would you like to take a trip to New York for $89?” US Airways flight attendants do get kickbacks if the customers return the credit card application on the plane or in the mail. Alaska Airlines also does this practice, but I find it less invasive. I haven’t seen United, Delta, or American flight attendants hawk credit card apps while in-flight.
9. You can’t use American Airlines Systemwide Upgrades (eVIPS) on US Airways – This is one reciprocal benefit that I would like to see US Airways offer in the near future. US Airways recently provided American Airlines elites unlimited complimentary upgrades on US Airways operated flights.
10. You can’t change your frequent flier number on a British Airways Avios award ticket operated by US Airways – The BA frequent flier number is hardcoded to your US Airways award ticket and there is absolutely no way to change it over the phone. The Finnair website trick on changing the frequent flier number won’t work either because you’re unable to hit “Edit”. However, I’ve written a workaround tutorial on How to Add Your AAdvantage # to a British Airways Avios Award Ticket on US Airways.