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More award availability restricted by married segments / connections

Old Jan 3, 2018, 5:05 pm
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Last edit by: Prospero
AA has increased award availability at the SAAver / MileSAAver level, apparently at the cost of reducing the availability of nonstop and direct routing and increasing availability requiring connections using married segment logic.

This means those originating travel at one hub may well find themselves forced to connect through another hub - whose residents will also be required to connect through another hub. This is suspected to be a way of accommodating SAAver awards without competing with those purchasing more convenient nonstop routing. See post #17 by ashill.

Gary Leff: Cranky Flier got American to confirm last week that much of the space theyve opened up is on connecting flights. Theyre offering married segment availability award space thats highly restrictive...

See American Significantly Increases Coach Award Space On Connecting Flights, By Cranky Flier on Dec 21, 2017

How to Game Americans New Connecting Flight Award Availability to Get the Ticket You Want, by Gary Leff on December 26, 2017 but see post #75 by Psyclone*Jack; this loophole may now be closed.
Married Segment Logic and Effects on Awards

"When selling seats for through flights and the desired inventory is not available, you cannot opt to sell the flight point-to-point. If sold point-to-point, the error response MULTIPLE SEGMENTS FOR SAME FLIGHT - SELL AS ONE SEGMENT will be received, indicating this booking is not allowed. Overriding the error check by ending the PNR twice is not acceptable." Link to FT thread; see wikipost info by JonNYC and hillrider.

"Sometimes when youre searching for award space... youll find that some seats will show as available when you search for them from origin to destination, but when you call to book the flights segment-by-segment, those flights show as unavailable."

"Married segment logic is a tool used by airlines that restricts availability based on origin and destination, rather than by segments."(DCTA, on Boarding Area)

Married segment logic controls routings based on origin and destination, rather than segment-by-segment availability. Boarding Area
Link to Boarding Area: Sunday Reader Question: What are married segments?

From Amadeus: Married Segment Control Link

Amadeus Married Segment Control is a revenue maximisation tool that ensures that airline revenue management decisions, made at availability time, are applied throughout the booking process. It prevents agents bypassing availability controls, based on origin and destination (O&D) information. It also improves both load factors and revenue forecasting accuracy.

Key benefits
  • Ensures more effective forecasting by preventing O&D misuse and matching revenue forecasts with final revenues.
  • Improves consistency of sales processes by controlling travel agent selling behaviour.
  • Fully customisable and flexible solution that meets airline unique system requirements.
Link to Worldspan page with extensive information on MSL and coding.

Older posts have been archived off to https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/amer...nnections.html
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More award availability restricted by married segments / connections

Old May 4, 2018, 1:15 am
  #151  
 
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Originally Posted by asf-07
an AAA-BBB-CCC itinerary ... looking to go BBB-CCC ... AAA-BBB
Originally Posted by mcdullhk88
creating DDD-BBB-CCC ... DDD-BBB could easily be dropped ... DDD-BBB was on a partner
What's with all the hypotheticals? Can we use real airport codes? Are fake codes considered "safer" or "cooler"? I suppose there's always a risk that if I find out your travel plans, I might book the seat directly in front of you and take a double-helping of mixed nuts and then you won't get any. But surely that's a tiny risk. If we all get to vote, I vote that we use real airport codes.
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Old May 17, 2018, 10:57 am
  #152  
 
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Originally Posted by CloudCoder
What's with all the hypotheticals? Can we use real airport codes?
But they are real airport codes. There clearly are a lot of FTers flying AA's new nonstop flights from Minnesota. To Cuba, the Maldives, the French Polynesian Islands. Looks like they're making a serious move to replace the ORD hub.
salut0 and MarkOK like this.
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Old May 18, 2018, 11:42 am
  #153  
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Originally Posted by CloudCoder
What's with all the hypotheticals? Can we use real airport codes? Are fake codes considered "safer" or "cooler"? I suppose there's always a risk that if I find out your travel plans, I might book the seat directly in front of you and take a double-helping of mixed nuts and then you won't get any. But surely that's a tiny risk. If we all get to vote, I vote that we use real airport codes.
I just laugh at people when they type XXX-DFW-LHR, not too sure why all the secrecy is all about, it would help if people let us know the departing city is.
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Old May 20, 2018, 7:33 pm
  #154  
 
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Looking at some crazy routings bringing out my mom from California while I go on vacation this summer. Am seeing a lot of flights e.g., SAN-DFW and DFW-DCA where the first segment is an evening segment (say 5:00 pm departure) and the second segment is 6:00 am the next morning. Odd how AA sees these as valid pairs when they are effectively stop overs.
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Old May 20, 2018, 7:39 pm
  #155  
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Originally Posted by IADCAflyer
Looking at some crazy routings bringing out my mom from California while I go on vacation this summer. Am seeing a lot of flights e.g., SAN-DFW and DFW-DCA where the first segment is an evening segment (say 5:00 pm departure) and the second segment is 6:00 am the next morning. Odd how AA sees these as valid pairs when they are effectively stop overs.
You're ignoring the last-flight-in, first-flight-out exemption to the 4-hr domestic connection rule. (I don't think of the routings as desirable but they are 'legal'.)
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Old May 20, 2018, 7:59 pm
  #156  
 
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Originally Posted by 3Cforme
You're ignoring the last-flight-in, first-flight-out exemption to the 4-hr domestic connection rule. (I don't think of the routings as desirable but they are 'legal'.)
How about this gem:

SAN-JFK (arrives JFK at 7:00 am), connects to JFK-DCA which departs at 4:00 pm Nothing like a -9- hour layover.
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Old May 21, 2018, 4:56 am
  #157  
 
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Originally Posted by IADCAflyer
How about this gem:

SAN-JFK (arrives JFK at 7:00 am), connects to JFK-DCA which departs at 4:00 pm Nothing like a -9- hour layover.
Now we know how they improved so much in a recent ranking


Nothing like a nine hour layover after a redeye
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Old May 21, 2018, 7:27 am
  #158  
 
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Originally Posted by beachfan

Now we know how they improved so much in a recent ranking


Nothing like a nine hour layover after a redeye
I was going to turn lemons into lemonade. I'm flying out to Europe that day. I figured my mother could join me in the Flagship lounge during her layover and we could have a nice late lunch/early dinner before her flight and my flight.

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Old May 21, 2018, 8:27 am
  #159  
 
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Originally Posted by IADCAflyer
How about this gem:

SAN-JFK (arrives JFK at 7:00 am), connects to JFK-DCA which departs at 4:00 pm Nothing like a -9- hour layover.
Funny how when you look for a paid bookings, those long layovers do not show up, but when you look for award booking, its a different story. I had the same thing for a trip I'm booking for my wife.
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Old May 21, 2018, 9:14 am
  #160  
 
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Originally Posted by CloudCoder
What's with all the hypotheticals? Can we use real airport codes? Are fake codes considered "safer" or "cooler"? I suppose there's always a risk that if I find out your travel plans, I might book the seat directly in front of you and take a double-helping of mixed nuts and then you won't get any. But surely that's a tiny risk. If we all get to vote, I vote that we use real airport codes.
Discussing AAA-BBB-CCC-DDD is cleaner and easier to read, and avoids confusing the post with extraneous information. Our brains can understand "BBB-CCC wasn't available but AAA-BBB-CCC was available so I called 7 times to drop AAA-BBB." One poster's airport codes are irrelevant to the next poster trying to deal with this "married segment" garbage for his/her own route.

Originally Posted by beachfan

Now we know how they improved so much in a recent ranking


Nothing like a nine hour layover after a redeye
Would love to hear AA apologists explain....
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Old May 21, 2018, 11:58 am
  #161  
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Originally Posted by LAX_Esq
Discussing AAA-BBB-CCC-DDD is cleaner and easier to read, and avoids confusing the post with extraneous information. Our brains can understand "BBB-CCC wasn't available but AAA-BBB-CCC was available so I called 7 times to drop AAA-BBB." One poster's airport codes are irrelevant to the next poster trying to deal with this "married segment" garbage for his/her own route.
However, if someone wants to fly from FAR-LHR and they can't find J award, we could help them understand why that isnt going to happen. But if someone write, XXX-LHR we have no idea what city they flying out of.
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Old May 21, 2018, 2:53 pm
  #162  
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Originally Posted by LAX_Esq
Discussing AAA-BBB-CCC-DDD is cleaner and easier to read, and avoids confusing the post with extraneous information. Our brains can understand "BBB-CCC wasn't available but AAA-BBB-CCC was available so I called 7 times to drop AAA-BBB." One poster's airport codes are irrelevant to the next poster trying to deal with this "married segment" garbage for his/her own route.
Where airport are unimportant, I agree that there is no point using them, but inthat case, why use 3 letters ; A-B-C-D is even easier to read I think
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Old May 31, 2018, 5:26 pm
  #163  
 
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I'm trying to go CLT-PHL for 7,500 miles. Nothing available direct but if I tack on a connecting segment to BOS I have my pick of the litter for the CLT-PHL segments.

Based on what I've read it sounds like the only way to accomplish this is to put the CLT-PHL-BOS itinerary on hold and then play the HUCA game to try and find an agent that can/will drop the 2nd segment?

Anything else I should do to increase my odds of success?
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Old May 31, 2018, 5:44 pm
  #164  
 
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Originally Posted by HoKo
I'm trying to go CLT-PHL for 7,500 miles. Nothing available direct but if I tack on a connecting segment to BOS I have my pick of the litter for the CLT-PHL segments.

Based on what I've read it sounds like the only way to accomplish this is to put the CLT-PHL-BOS itinerary on hold and then play the HUCA game to try and find an agent that can/will drop the 2nd segment?

Anything else I should do to increase my odds of success?
You are correct, based on my limited experience and reading this thread. How to increase your odds? Play dumb and don't let the agents know what you're up to??
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Old Jun 1, 2018, 7:37 am
  #165  
 
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Interesting thread.

I snagged a sAAver award for my family of three for a flight plan this coming September.

Originally, the flight plan was SWO-DFW-PHX-RNO on the way out, and RNO-SNA-DFW-SWO on the way back (with RNO-SNA flight on Alaskan). I snagged the ticket sometime in November 2017. Sticker price-wise at the time, if I paid cash, this was a more expensive flight plan that the much simpler SWO-DFW-RNO // RNO-DFW-SWO flight plan, but the only one with Saaver availability. This far out, all flights on any flight plan were pretty much empty. Oh well, I went for the saaver award since it is the only way that miles mean anything of good enough value and there was no rush getting there and back (week long trip for fun to chill at Lake Tahoe).

Change 1 occurred in December 2017, when the return flight got adjusted to RNO-PDX-SNA-DFW-SWO, with RNO-PDX-SNA all on alaskan, and where the arrival in SNA was 4 hours AFTER the departure to DFW on AA. I let that sit for a few weeks, wondering if it would fix itself, and it wasn't, so I called and the agent switched me to a much simpler RNO-DFW-SWO on the return flight, all on AA metal.

Change 2 occurred in April 2018, when time adjustments on the SWO-DFW flight bumped the DFW-PHX flight later, and that made the PHX layover from an original 2 hours down to 20 minutes. So I called and the agent got the outbound to a much simpler SWO-DFW-RNO flight.

Seems like I got caught in a required extra connection to do a sAAver award, but wiggled out of it!
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