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American, Delta Renew Interline Agreement for Displaced Passengers

In 2015, American Airlines and Delta Air Lines canceled a long-standing agreement to aid each other’s passengers in the event of irregular operations. Three years later, the two airlines are coming together once again to ensure that all passengers can get home – regardless of what airline they are ticketed on.

American Airlines and Delta Air Lines will once again team up to the aid of passengers, making sure that those flying aboard either carrier can get home, even when normal operations are tied up. Skift reports the two carriers will once again sign an interline agreement, allowing passengers of one airline to travel aboard the other during periods of irregular operations.

The airlines canceled their original agreement in 2015 over performance issues. Delta demanded more money from American, claiming they would receive five American flyers for every one Delta had to accommodate. Since then, Delta has experienced several major computer outages with no partners to fly domestic passengers, including major situations in 2016 and 2017. The Atlanta-based carrier tried to pass the breakdowns off as a holdover from previous budget cuts, but offered no solution on stranded passengers.

According to a statement by American, Delta began pursuing the new agreement in 2017. A Delta spokesperson told Skift the agreement isn’t a true interline agreement in that customers can book tickets freely across each carrier, but is rather an “irregular operations ticketing and baggage re-accommodation agreement.” Because this is an emergency backup plan for both airlines, travel agents and flyers won’t be able to combine itineraries across both carriers. Although the two airlines will handle luggage transfers for displaced flyers, mixed itineraries with both carriers will not offer the same flexibility.

The new agreement, which begins immediately, allows gate agents to rebook “customers onto each other’s flights in the event of unexpected flight disruptions,” an American spokesperson told Skift. Financial details on the deal were not released.

[Photo: Shutterstock]

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laurel94025 January 25, 2018

It's about time! Some passengers are going to be annoyed if not irate, not matter what the airlines do. Better to support the health and comfort of the majority of the passengers who follow the rules, pay the fees etc, than to accommodate those who cheat with the phone ESAs. Couldn't agree more about the those who get the "quick online certification or a letter from a doctor friend"-- why should we all suffer so they can avoid paying the legitimate fees or be without their beloved pet for the duration of a flight. There is risk associated with everything, including being a passenger in a flight full of phone ESAs.

flyerCO January 25, 2018

Guess writer doesn't know difference between an reservation and a ticket. Customers have always been able to book one itinerary with both. However they can't book it on one ticket. One itinerary can have multiple tickets.