Great news from American Airlines!

Aug 19th, 2003, 10:34 AM
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Great news from American Airlines!

FOR RELEASE: Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2003
PLANS CHANGED? AMERICAN AIRLINES GIVES MORE TIME TO RESCHEDULE

New Flexibility and Savings for Customers When Their Plans Change

FORT WORTH, Texas ? American Airlines understands that even the best-planned trip can hit a snag. So American is giving customers new flexibility to change their flights ? and save money ? when they have to postpone or cancel their trips.

Effective immediately, customers with nonrefundable tickets that allow changes will have a full year from the date their original ticket was issued to reschedule without losing the value of their tickets, provided they cancel their reservations prior to scheduled departure time.

American?s previous policy required customers with nonrefundable tickets to not only cancel, but also rebook a new flight and have their ticket reissued no later than their originally scheduled departure date.

"American's customers have asked for more time to firm up new plans when their old plans fall through, and we?ve listened," said Scott Nason, vice president-Revenue Management. "Our new policy allows customers to rebook on their own timetable without losing the value of their nonrefundable tickets and without facing multiple change fees.

"Our business customers, especially, will appreciate the flexibility, and we know all of our customers will appreciate the savings," Nason said.

Under terms of the new policy, customers with nonrefundable tickets must now cancel their flight reservations before their flight is scheduled to depart. When they do, they will have one year from the date their original ticket was issued to reschedule and apply the value of the unused ticket (less any applicable change fee) to their new trip.

Tickets must be reissued and travel must commence within one year of the date the original ticket was issued.

Here?s how it works: A customer purchases his ticket on Sep. 1, 2003, for travel departing on Oct. 15, 2003. On Oct. 1, 2003, his plans change, and he calls his travel agent or AA Reservations to cancel his itinerary. He will now have until Sep. 1, 2004, (one year after his original ticket issue date) to rebook, have his ticket reissued and commence travel on his new itinerary.

Customers can cancel flights or reschedule by calling their travel agent or AA Reservations at 1-800-433-7300 (Espanol, 1-800-633-3711; TDD for customers with hearing or speech disabilities, 1-800-543-1586).

American Airlines is the world's largest carrier. American, American Eagle and the AmericanConnection regional carriers serve nearly 275 cities in 50 countries and territories with approximately 4,300 daily flights. The combined network fleet numbers more than 1,000 aircraft. American's award-winning Web site, AA.com, provides users with easy access to check and book fares, plus personalized news, information and travel offers. American Airlines is a founding member of the oneworld Alliance.

AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Aug 21st, 2003, 05:32 AM
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Great news! Thanks for sharing AAFrequentFyer.
Statia is offline  
Aug 21st, 2003, 11:34 AM
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"
Effective immediately, customers with nonrefundable tickets that allow changes will have a full year from the date their original ticket was issued to reschedule without losing the value of their tickets, provided they cancel their reservations prior to scheduled departure time."

The only problem is, who buys the very high priced "non-refundable ticktets??"

This will satisfy a very small segement of the market. The rest of us looking for the best price will continue to work around this.

This news is better served on flyertalk.

C

Curious is offline  
Aug 21st, 2003, 12:08 PM
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KT
 
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Curious, I'm curious as to what you mean. Normally, the cheap tickets are the ones that are non-refundable, but many allow changes with a fee. Those are the tickets AA is talking about. The very high priced tickets are refundable. Am I missing something?
KT is offline  
Aug 21st, 2003, 12:22 PM
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KT,

I believe Curious is still curious

You got it right!
AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Aug 21st, 2003, 12:57 PM
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Curious......yes,VERY,curious it is..but AA has offered many "business" non refundable fares,abot 50% of the highest fully refundable economy fares.Many business travellers are able to take advantage of low, non refundable fares as well.Prior to this change in rules,if I bought a cheap non refundable ticket, and my plans changed as they often do, then I would have to rebook the ticket by the time I was supposed to leave in the first place.And how would I know when that would be?? If I did not rebook, it was gone.The "use it or lose it " rule.One time I had to change a ticket to Miami using enough $100 change fees to make it a full fare ticket by the time I could use it.This change in rules now allows me to keep the ticket without having to rebook it for a full year as long as I cancel the trip before I was scheduled to go in the first place.The reason AA made the change was that enough of us business travellers bitched about it often enough to get their attention.Bottom line I disagree with you that this affects only a small portion of travellers.The impact of the exodus of the business traveller to low fare carriers without such restrictions has made a huge impact on AA and the other airlines.
BeachBoi is offline  
Aug 21st, 2003, 02:52 PM
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CO and DL have also announced the same. I'm sure the rest of the majors will follow soon. None of them will want to be the only one left with the use it or lose it policy.
Patty is offline  
Aug 21st, 2003, 08:00 PM
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Doncha love the spin AA puts on this? They really make it sound like a new innovative product or feature. Who could guess it's nothing more than the elimination of a procedure that's only a couple of months old, because the public wouldn't accept it.
NoFlyZone is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2003, 04:46 AM
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True.But the "new blood" at AA is at least doing something to head in the direction of a black bottom line.I think it got a lot of airline exec's attentions when it was pointed out that in the last 12 months, Delta has lost 20% of the traffic in and out of Atlanta to AirTran.Pretty sick when you lose your home turf.Thats a huge amount of business.
BeachBoi is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2003, 06:19 AM
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Darn!!!!! It's the first time I have screwed up this year!!!!!

C
Curious is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2003, 06:22 AM
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Northwest has attempted to one-up them by not only adopting the same policy, but NOT requiring passengers to call ahead and cancel.
martytravels is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2003, 07:30 AM
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Note how AA barely mentioned "change fee" - you still have to pay to change your ticket. I'm not sure why we should give them credit for moving from a ridiculously rigid policy to a slightly less ridid policy, which is designed not to serve customers but to increase their revenue via fees.

Meanwhile, airlines that are making a profit like Southwest Airlines do not charge a change fee at all, nor do you have to cancel your flight before departure. Jet Blue charges you only $25 to change a ticket.

Andrew is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2003, 07:47 AM
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Andrew....Standard response from the airlines on that exact questionee....
"We must remain competitive"....I think their definition of "competitive" is far different from mine.The bottom line--They just DONT get it!!
BeachBoi is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2003, 09:38 AM
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So, if you get to a point (before the end of your year) where you rebook something and then your plans change AGAIN, can you go through the same process all over again (extending it out another year) for another $100?
inthechips is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2003, 09:59 AM
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No.....the end of th eyear is the end of the ticket...BUT, it's their airline.They can do as they wish.The rules are theirs..."They" can break their own rules.I don't know of any airline that allows for longer than a 1 year ticket validity, but who am I?
BeachBoi is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2003, 11:07 AM
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Well, then, here's another question (I may end up having to call AA on this one, unless someone has a definitive answer) - is there any possibility of reissuing a nonrefundable ticket in ANOTHER family member's name?
inthechips is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2003, 11:09 AM
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Airline tickets are non transferrable...and with today's security situation, it couldnt be done.You could check with the airline issuing the other persons ticket and see if they would convert it to a travel voucher.Those are usually transferrable some to a degree more than others.
BeachBoi is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2003, 12:54 PM
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Okay, I am this close to calling AA as I've run out of questions, but here's the final attempt - can a nonrefundable ticket be reissued on a partner airline, i.e. can my AA ticket credit be used to purchase a ticket on American's partner, Alaska Airlines?
inthechips is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2003, 01:07 PM
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I would say no, but....I dont think that is part of the "partnership" deals but I havent tried it..,.Good Luck!!
BeachBoi is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2003, 01:14 PM
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Thanks for all your help, Beachboi!
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