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US/AA merger- MASTER DISCUSSION THREAD/incl 'when will US leave STAR'

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US/AA merger- MASTER DISCUSSION THREAD/incl 'when will US leave STAR'

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Old Dec 8, 13, 9:45 am   -   Wikipost
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There is an existing thread in the AA forum that may be useful to US and AA Flyertalkers:
US-AA Merger: Just the Facts thread

As facts become posted, that should be the place to look.

Merger discussion, speculation, and other questions can be directed here, or the similar thread in the AA forum:
MERGER: US and AA 9 Dec 2013 and implications for AA flyers (new)

AA - US Merger Agreement / Announcement / DOJ Action Discussion (consolidated, and now closed to new posts)
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Old May 27, 13, 9:01 am
  #661  
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: PHL
Programs: US -Plat, UA-Plat, AA-Plat, Marriott - Platinum,
Posts: 235
To Book or To wait for Award Travel

So this question may be a bit premature, but since I am an uber-planner I will ask.

I am going to need to book award travel for Aug '14 for a med-cruise out of Barcelona. I have some flexibility with respects to EU entry as I intend to make at least one side trip in conjunction with the cruise (ideally, I am considering Paris). I live in Philly so either Philadelphia or Newark are ideal departure options, and JFK an option. We will be travel as a family of four and most likely will try for a Business / Envoy class flight outbound.

So the question is should I book when the window opens hoping for either a US or a *A Partner award in the low/ med award fare, or wait until One World options open up for us?

I assume any booked travel on Star Alliance would be good regardless of the US status with the alliance at time of travel (i.e. after US switches over to One World). Though I do worry about irrops on *A once US is no longer a member.

Any thoughts would be appreciated.
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Old May 27, 13, 10:23 am
  #662  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: SFO
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Well, directs to BCN are from EWR or JFK. PHL doesn't have any. EWR is on United, JFK is Delta and AA. All have some alliance codeshares, but those are the actual operators.

If all you have are US miles and there is award inventory now, I'd say just book a partner award and fly United.

Do you have any extra time? Remember the US award chart allows for north asia in J for fewer miles than europe. Can you do your cruise as a stopover en route to asia, even for a couple of nights?
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Old May 27, 13, 10:44 am
  #663  
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Originally Posted by PWMTrav View Post
Well, directs to BCN are from EWR or JFK. PHL doesn't have any. EWR is on United, JFK is Delta and AA. All have some alliance codeshares, but those are the actual operators.

If all you have are US miles and there is award inventory now, I'd say just book a partner award and fly United.

Do you have any extra time? Remember the US award chart allows for north asia in J for fewer miles than europe. Can you do your cruise as a stopover en route to asia, even for a couple of nights?
That's exactly what I would do but keep in mind that your destination must have a MPM fare published via the Atlantic.
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Old May 27, 13, 11:12 am
  #664  
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
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The New American is Arriving (US and AA announce merger - MASTER DISCUSSION THREAD)

US flies PHL-BCN...
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Old May 27, 13, 4:57 pm
  #665  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
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Originally Posted by la2clt View Post
US flies PHL-BCN...
I didn't see that route when I checked Openflight. Is it seasonal?
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Old May 27, 13, 8:47 pm
  #666  
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Originally Posted by PWMTrav View Post
I didn't see that route when I checked Openflight. Is it seasonal?
Yes. And it was running for a long season in the past. It usually mirrored the daylight standard time season. I'm not sure about this year though. But since this is August travel, it should be daily. Perhaps the inventory is already sold out for the exact dates.
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Old May 27, 13, 10:49 pm
  #667  
 
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Originally Posted by Fanjet View Post
Yes. And it was running for a long season in the past. It usually mirrored the daylight standard time season. I'm not sure about this year though. But since this is August travel, it should be daily. Perhaps the inventory is already sold out for the exact dates.
I thought it is set up 330 days ahead? considering this is August 2014 that OP is asking I think it is TOOOOOOOO SOOOOOON
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Old May 27, 13, 11:43 pm
  #668  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
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New American is arriving and I'm departing

As a frequent flyer to Seoul, the decision was easy. I was US CP in 2012, and PP this year, but the day after the merger was announced I started accumulating miles on UA. The *A has far better service to Seoul, and better in general to Asia. To have to go through DFW or Tokyo to get to ICN from PHX was the last straw. What is unfortunate is that I accumulated 15k miles on US before the announcement that they were going with oneworld, or I'd be *G already on UA. It also is crappy that *A rules prevent any kind of status match from UA to US DM members, even though they know US is leaving. So I wasn't able to board early for a few months and had to fight for lounge access several times. They constantly want to put my US DM number on the ticket to let me into the lounge which is not required by the *A rules. I loved AWA but the service has slowly been deteriorating over the years since the HP/US merger, and now - I'm out.

I've actually been treated better as UA *A Silver by UA and OZ in the last few weeks than I was as US CP in 2012. I think if you live in the northeast or east of DFW, this merger might be OK for you, but if you live west of DFW and particularly if you fly to Asia, the decision seems clear to me - stick with *A. I imagine after US leaves, UA will offer some kind of status match, but I didn't want to take the chance.

I was surprised to read a few posts back that a CP member got 100% upgrades on US hub to hub. I got "0%" hub to hub upgrades as CP in 2012. Another rant is that the worthwhile DM special rewards for reaching halfway to the next level (40k, 60k, 80k or whatever) are almost impossible to redeem. The most useful is the free spouse USAClub membership. But if your expiration date falls almost anywhere other than a few weeks after you reach that milestone, it's impossible to redeem. So bye bye US/AA. UA sucks but not as bad as US at this point.
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Old May 28, 13, 12:33 am
  #669  
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Originally Posted by awadryheat View Post
I've actually been treated better as UA *A Silver by UA and OZ in the last few weeks than I was as US CP in 2012. I think if you live in the northeast or east of DFW, this merger might be OK for you, but if you live west of DFW and particularly if you fly to Asia, the decision seems clear to me - stick with *A. I imagine after US leaves, UA will offer some kind of status match, but I didn't want to take the chance.
.
AA flies to LAX from PHX. From LAX, AA flies to NRT and PVG on their own metal. And some believe that ICN will be added within the next couple of years if DFW-ICN does well. With OW partners, CX flies to HKG. JL flies to NRT. MH flies to KUL (I'm not sure which Asian city that flight stops in on the way. I thought it was TPE). Plus, the general consensus is that AA will be increasing Asian service from LAX. They are going to be utilizing 4 gates at the TBIT terminal when it is finished
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Old May 28, 13, 3:55 am
  #670  
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
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Originally Posted by awadryheat View Post
It also is crappy that *A rules prevent any kind of status match from UA to US DM members, even though they know US is leaving.
Not true. While this is a de facto policy, exceptions are made. I once received a status match from US to UA by providing evidence of my recent and forthcoming travel schedule. I was flying mostly transcons at the time, so I'm sure a regular TPAC flyer would pique their interest.

Last edited by thewayofthefuture; May 28, 13 at 4:01 am
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Old May 28, 13, 9:27 am
  #671  
 
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Originally Posted by iztok View Post
I thought it is set up 330 days ahead? considering this is August 2014 that OP is asking I think it is TOOOOOOOO SOOOOOON
Thanks for the replies.

Yes I know right now is too soon since I am looking at Aug 14 travel. US does fly direct to BCN however, if this year is an indication of next year, Business / Envoy are much higher point thresholds on US versus *A.

So my main question if in my shoes, would you book *A at 330 days or wait and see if OW/ AA Award booking opens up in the near future? And if I book *A now what are the risks next year once US moves to OW and I am flying *A?
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Old May 28, 13, 10:32 am
  #672  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
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Originally Posted by PA Pilot View Post
Thanks for the replies.

Yes I know right now is too soon since I am looking at Aug 14 travel. US does fly direct to BCN however, if this year is an indication of next year, Business / Envoy are much higher point thresholds on US versus *A.

So my main question if in my shoes, would you book *A at 330 days or wait and see if OW/ AA Award booking opens up in the near future? And if I book *A now what are the risks next year once US moves to OW and I am flying *A?
Are you planning to use your US miles, or whatever they become once the merger completes? If so, I'd be tempted to book ASAP - there's no guarantee that by the time the AA space is available and gone on JFK-BCN that the programs will have merged. It sounds like your dates aren't too flexible, though, so for summer award travel you sort of have to take what you can get. That's just what I'd do, though. Others' opinions may differ.

Do you have any BA Avios available - either directly or through Amex, Chase rewards? If that's a possibility, you may want to keep checking for BA partner space (AA) on that route. It looks like JFK-BCN is 80k RT in J, which is a nice deal. Since it'd be on AA metal, you don't pay BA's ridiculous fuel surcharges.

As far as the risks, I'm really not sure. I have no experience in this scenario.
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Old May 28, 13, 10:53 am
  #673  
 
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Originally Posted by PWMTrav View Post
Are you planning to use your US miles, or whatever they become once the merger completes? If so, I'd be tempted to book ASAP - there's no guarantee that by the time the AA space is available and gone on JFK-BCN that the programs will have merged. It sounds like your dates aren't too flexible, though, so for summer award travel you sort of have to take what you can get. That's just what I'd do, though. Others' opinions may differ.

Do you have any BA Avios available - either directly or through Amex, Chase rewards? If that's a possibility, you may want to keep checking for BA partner space (AA) on that route. It looks like JFK-BCN is 80k RT in J, which is a nice deal. Since it'd be on AA metal, you don't pay BA's ridiculous fuel surcharges.

As far as the risks, I'm really not sure. I have no experience in this scenario.
Unfortunately all I have are US miles.....so my options are book as soon as possible with US or *A or wait until AA/OW booking opens up.
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Old May 28, 13, 11:08 am
  #674  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
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Originally Posted by PA Pilot View Post
Unfortunately all I have are US miles.....so my options are book as soon as possible with US or *A or wait until AA/OW booking opens up.
My two cents are to book it when you see it available. There are too many moving parts to do it on AA - they'd need to combine programs or partner for bookings and do that in time for the inventory on AA to be available for you (if at all). It's kind of a gamble either way.

Your best bet if you're looking to minimize uncertainty is to book the route on US metal if/when available, rather than a *A partner (if still available). I'd probably personally be willing to gamble on the partner award on United if I saw it open up, figuring the odds are good things work smoothly, but that's just me.
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Old May 28, 13, 11:27 am
  #675  
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Originally Posted by PA Pilot View Post
Unfortunately all I have are US miles.....so my options are book as soon as possible with US or *A or wait until AA/OW booking opens up.
This heavily depends on your destination and the expected date. A few destinations such as LHR are better served by OW. However, for most destinations, *A will be a better choice because of superior route network. Also, keep in mind that BA, which you have to take to get anywhere east of London on OW, imposes very high YQ on awards. So, if you see suitable flights on *A, book them.

Originally Posted by PWMTrav View Post
. . .Your best bet if you're looking to minimize uncertainty is to book the route on US metal if/when available, rather than a *A partner (if still available). . .
US will honor previously booked tickets. The uncertainty here is that if one of the partner flights is cancelled after US leaves *A, the itinerary will be refunded, as US would no longer be able to rebook on *A. So, if you absolutely have to travel, you should take PWNTrav's advice and try to book on US metal.

Last edited by burlax; May 28, 13 at 11:34 am
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