US Airways and American Airlines Change Frequent Flyer Awards Program

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Following Delta’s recent changes to its frequent flyer awards program, both American Airlines and US Airways are making changes to their rewards programs.

US Airways and American merged in 2014, and the changes allow flyers to redeem miles for flights on both carriers. Like Delta, the new rewards programs require more miles to earn awards tickets, and both carriers offer a more complicated explanation of how miles are earned. US Airway’s web site showcases a detailed chart with miles earned by cabin, starting point and destination, while American offers different redemption levels based on various routes, ticket “levels” and dates. American frequent flight members will now be able to redeem miles for unrestricted awards at 20,000, 30,000 or 50,000 miles, rather than the former flat-rate award, with more miles earned on busier travel days.

More passengers will lose the opportunity for free checked luggage, as well. On American flights, passengers who take an earned mileage flight or who chose economy seats will have to pay to check bags. US Airways gold and platinum holders will now receive only two free checked bags, however, silver members will now receive one free checked bag. American platinum members will receive two free checked bags, but gold members will now only receive one.

The changes are effective immediately and will apply to all flights starting on June 1, 2014.

–Lissa Poirot

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