US Airways and American Merger Progress and Updates

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There is lots of news and updates today as the US Airways and American Airlines merger makes progress. I’m going to share the parts that jump out at me as most interesting from the perspective of someone who doesn’t have elite status in either program, but has miles that I care about in both programs.

US Airways merger

  • This isn’t a surprising, but it is confirmed that US Airways Dividend Miles accounts will go into the AAdvantage program in 2015. That means that award mileage balances will combine some point in 2015.  Until then you will continue to have two separate buckets of miles – one in American and one in US Airways.
  • Beginning August 1, US Airways is raising redemption levels for round-trip travel on medium and high awards between the continental U.S. and Canada and the price of First Class awards on three-class service within and between the continental U.S. and Canada on oneworld and partner flights.  This puts those prices in line with American mileage prices and they are increases that don’t impact very many of the awards that are commonly booked by those in this community.  Though that JFK-Vancouver route on Cathay Pacific in First always looked mighty appealing to me (though massively impractical living here in Texas!).  If you book by August 1 you can do it for 50,000 US Airways miles round trip.  After that date it will be 65,000 US Airways miles round trip.  I’m glad that no other prices are changing right now and that we have advance notice!
  • Reciprocal elite upgrades will be possible beginning Wednesday for US Airways and American Airlines elites.  For those without elite status in either program this doesn’t matter, but of course it is very important for those who do have elite status and travel frequently on these airlines.  I recommend heading to View From the Wing for the full breakdown on how this will work.  For those who care about having their elite qualifying miles combined to earn status for 2015 there was no reassurance that it will work out that way, so those questions are still up in the air.

You can get more official updates on this progress here and here.

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