FlyerTalk Forums - View Single Post - Any other ORD-based flyers struggling with AA's schedule/lack of frequency
Old Dec 13, 17, 11:46 am
Used to be 'g_leyser'
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Land of Lightfoot
Programs: AS MVP Gold, AA PlatPro, HH Dia, Bonvoy Gold, IHG Gold, Reno Air MEGA Platinum
Posts: 9,710
Any other ORD-based flyers struggling with AA's schedule/lack of frequency

By way of background, I travel predominantly for business, 100% North America, usually midweek. The majority of my trips are to the West Coast (literally every city AA flies nonstop to from ORD), and Southeast (ATL, Florida, Carolinas, DC area), with a few other random trips once per quarter or so (this year it was MSP, YYZ, and LGA x 2). I am only allowed to book economy, but sometimes I will pay out of pocket to upfare to F if it's reasonable (e.g. my ORD-SFO flight this week was only $62 more). I usually book one-ways, and I'm rarely able to book more than 2 weeks in advance. I spend a LOT of time in exit rows . I switched to AA in 2013 after 830K lifetime UA EQMs after I just couldn't take it anymore with UA. Have been PLT or EXP every year since. I am writing this on an LAX-ORD flight, which will qualify me for Plat Pro.

Lately I have really been struggling with making AA work for many of the itineraries I need. My goal in life right now is to spend as few nights away in hotels as possible. I am loyal to AA, but I absolutely will NOT spend an extra night away just to make sure I fly with AA. I have had to book on other airlines quite a few times this year as a result.

Some examples this year and looking into next year:
  • MIA-ORD on a Wednesday afternoon: Meeting went to about 4pm and wanted to get home same night - only UA had a late enough departure - this is hub-to-hub no less!!
  • ATL-ORD on a Tuesday evening - wanted to make a work dinner and get home same night. Last AA flight is ~7pm. At least 3 options on DL to either ORD or MDW
  • MSP-ORD on a Monday evening - same as above - last AA flight is ~7pm. 4 options on DL - ended up booking WN into MDW for ~$50
  • ORD-SJC any day: Usually only 1 flight a day and it leaves ORD around 10am. Which means to make a lunch meeting I have to fly into SFO and drive
  • SJC-ORD and SMF-ORD midweek - only 1 flight a day on Wednesdays and it's ~11am departure meaning the whole day is shot
  • ORD-RSW on a Thursday afternoon in Dec: Last flight of the day is at 12 Noon?
  • ORD-SEA in the winter: Summer schedule is great, but off-season is brutal. Last outbound from ORD is 10:30am!
I understand supply and demand, and there are limited aircraft, but just wondering if anyone else is finding this more challenging lately.
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