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Old Aug 24, 05, 1:33 pm   #1
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No More Pets in the Hold

Very quietly, the "new" USAirways has announced it will no longer fly pets, post merger. Traveling in the cabin, for small ones, is still OK, and they will honor any reservations already made, but no more checked. In my case, since we have flown our dogs for years, without incident, that is the final nail in the pine box for us at this carrier. They claim they are conforming to America West, but it should be noted that AWA's 2 hubs are located in desert infernos (I lived in PHX for 4 years, so I know of where I speak). This action could mean a lot of things. Anything from a dumb, parochial decision, to a precursor of things to come, such as a disproportionate shift of hub traffic West, to plans to fire all the ramp workers, and not wanting the fallout from mishandling, now that such stats are required to be disclosed monthly. At a time when many larger carriers are actually chasing this business, to the extent they are even offering the animals FF miles, you have to wonder if the Kool Aid has been sent on ahead to Tempe.
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Old Aug 24, 05, 1:39 pm   #2
 
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Discussed quite a bit here . It's actually a decision influenced by HP, not the other way around...
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Old Aug 24, 05, 2:08 pm   #3
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Not too many years ago, HP got some bad press for more than one bad pet incident. I believe some peoples' pets died in transit.

So, that along with those scorching temperatures on the ground, led them to abandon the pet rule.
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Old Aug 24, 05, 3:20 pm   #4
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I must have missed the thread. I only noticed the policy change this morning, while catching up on some Wall Street Journals from last week, after being out of the country. When I called the CP line, they were unsure, and had little information. I wasn't suggesting US pushed it.....only that by osmosis, the Phoenix crowd seemed to making some dumb decisions, which surprised me. Thousands of pets travel safely by air every year. For a carrier the size of US, especially in the populous East, removing this option will create some hardships. They have done everything in their power to raise money, and lower costs, and now walk away from a money making service with sizable growth opportunity. Operating conditions in the desert southwest are very different from the east coast. Failure to understand that is the kind of thing that wrecked the old USAirways.
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Old Aug 25, 05, 7:21 am   #5
 
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flying fido

I know that pets can't fly in the hold during summer or winter due to temperature, there are only a limited few months for the availability.

Could it be that the no fly season has started and that is the reason for the ban (vs the forever just because)
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Old Aug 25, 05, 8:29 am   #6
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suzieq
I know that pets can't fly in the hold during summer or winter due to temperature, there are only a limited few months for the availability.

Could it be that the no fly season has started and that is the reason for the ban (vs the forever just because)
No, it's a change in policy. US never had a "no fly" season...everything was based on temperature, breed of dog, etc. They ran a smart, safe operation but have decided for whatever reason that they are no longer offering this service. That's a shame, as now I'll have to find a new carrier for the couple of times a year my dog will accompany me. And who knows...if I find that I'm treated well on those trips, why not send more of my business to that other carrier?

Bad decision US...
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Old Aug 25, 05, 9:31 am   #7
 
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US Granting An Exemption To National German Shepherd Dog Show

Clearly US isn't rethinking the policy - but here they seemed to realize that the cutoff was a potential problem.

From today's Observer (free registration required - http://www.charlotte.com/mld/charlot...s/12469106.htm ):

Airline relaxes rule for Concord dog show

ADAM BELL
Staff Writer

US Airways is officially out of the doghouse with several hundred German shepherd owners coming to a November dog show in Cabarrus County.

. . . .

But since the event ends after Nov. 1, owners of up to 300 dogs were looking at getting into town with their pets but scrambling for ways to get them out.

So dog show officials and the Cabarrus County Convention and Visitors Bureau talked to US Airways. On Wednesday, the airline said it was waiving its policy to accommodate the dog group.

. . . .
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Old Aug 25, 05, 10:14 am   #8
 
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Then why don't we all write as customers and say something. This is not a "seasonal" thing as I have seen people fly their pets from Europe to the USA all year round. I don't get it. The new US is already cutting their throats on this one as it made them some money on transatlantics.
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Old Aug 25, 05, 7:42 pm   #9
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I had my dog booked on November 3, and they said no dice, even though we were only 2 days past the cutoff. I asked for, and received a refund for two tickets (wife and I), called Continental, bought new ones, and booked the dog. As we were ending the conversation, the agent mentioned that I got an extra 200 FF miles for the dog. Seems Continental, which makes money, unlike USAir, which loses money, sees this as a segment it wants to develop. If you look at all the dumb things this airline has done, starting with the attempt to cut FF benefits, they have continually had to backtrack, while suffering permanent damage, and in almost every case, the common thread has been a total failure to understand how many people would be affected. Simply stated, they have never understood who their customer is.
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Old Aug 25, 05, 7:48 pm   #10
 
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I've seen your little puppy dogs in their cages waiting to be loaded into the cargo hold. The rampies always treat pets very well, but it still isn't something I'd do to my mutt.
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Old Aug 25, 05, 8:13 pm   #11
 
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It is no coincidence that this policy change coincides with the growth of a cottage industry in the legal profession of "Animal Lawyers"

Vet malpractice and suits for wrongful pet deaths are popping up all around the country. The airline's general counsel are just staying ahead of the curve.

Sorry fluffy
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Old Aug 25, 05, 9:55 pm   #12
 
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It's who they're "competing" against

The fact is that neither one of the so-called LCCs -jetBlue, Southwest, AirTran, Frontier, and HP- accepts pets as checked baggage. That's what this airline is trying to model/align itself with now....

Last edited by Arrzee; Aug 26, 05 at 4:57 am.
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Old Aug 26, 05, 5:32 am   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deelmakur
I had my dog booked on November 3, and they said no dice, even though we were only 2 days past the cutoff. I asked for, and received a refund for two tickets (wife and I), called Continental, bought new ones, and booked the dog. As we were ending the conversation, the agent mentioned that I got an extra 200 FF miles for the dog. Seems Continental, which makes money, unlike USAir, which loses money, sees this as a segment it wants to develop. If you look at all the dumb things this airline has done, starting with the attempt to cut FF benefits, they have continually had to backtrack, while suffering permanent damage, and in almost every case, the common thread has been a total failure to understand how many people would be affected. Simply stated, they have never understood who their customer is.
US had to maake this decsion to align itself with HP. HP does not allow pets in the cargo hold, period. With our hubs in PHX and LAS, the heat is unbearable (106 yesterday and estimated 109 today in PHX, yippeee) so Fido or Fluffy would be dead by the time we taxied.
US just couldn't have some flights allow pets and others not. I know this is a hardship on some people but, like you said, CO allows pets so you booked with them. The new US is a LCC--you will notice that other LCC's (B6, WN, etc.) also do not allow pets in cargo.
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Old Aug 26, 05, 7:57 am   #14
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snokums925
...
US just couldn't have some flights allow pets and others not. ...
Ummmm.... why?

"A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds" - Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Old Aug 26, 05, 9:02 am   #15
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If heat is the issue, then embargo them from May to September/October. If becoming a successful LCC was all about copying another practitioner, everybody would do it, and they'd all be successful. Not that easy. Just ask Independence Air. I'd like to be a fly on the wall, when those guys in Tempe actually figure out what they bought. By the way, many of the carriers you mentioned have a whole different outlook on checked baggage. Most don't even interline. I believe AWA does.
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