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Last week, American and US Airways announced reciprocal mileage earning and redemption options as part of the ongoing merger, and today, American announced yet another step where, starting today, flyers can book codeshared flights on the two airlines for travel starting January 23. The move should make it easier to create itineraries that combine flights on both airlines, and thus start linking together the two airlines’ current flight networks more seamlessly for travelers.
The codeshare is being rolled out in phases and this is just the first, which will cover only select American and US Airways flights and includes placing:
- The US Airways code on most American-operated flights between American’s hubs in Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles, Miami and New York (JFK), and US Airways hubs in Charlotte, Philadelphia, Phoenix and Washington, D.C. (DCA).
- The American code on most US Airways-operated flights between US Airways’ hubs in Charlotte, Philadelphia, Phoenix and Washington, D.C.(DCA), and American’s hubs in Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles, Miami and New York (JFK).
- The American code on US Airways’ East Coast Shuttle service, which includes flights between Boston, New York (LGA) and Washington, D.C.(DCA).
- The US Airways code on select American domestic flights from Chicago and Dallas/Fort Worth, providing US Airways customers immediate access to small- and medium-size destinations currently served by American but not US Airways.
- The American and US Airways code on select international flights operated by the other carrier.
The airlines expect to start codesharing all flights in the following weeks. While AA.com is already pulling in tons of codeshared options on various itineraries, USAirways.com is pulling up much more limited codesharing on some of AA’s main routes including this one from LAX-DFW, instead routing flights through the airline’s own hub of Phoenix, so it could be a while before the codeshare is truly up and running.
Still, hopefully this will make the travel experience as well as tracking miles from flights on both airlines a bit easier.
50% Mileage Bonus
Speaking of miles, both American and US Airways are offering 50% bonus miles when you credit your account with either with a flight from the other airline.
So you get a 50% AAdvantage mileage bonus when you travel on any US Airways flight between January 13 and March 2, 2014, or a 50% US Airways bonus when you credit travel on any American Airlines flight during those same dates. You must just register before flying (even if your flights are already purchased, they will count as long as you register before travel) and they don’t have to be the new codeshared flights.
Before you go too crazy crediting your flights to the other program, just remember that the airlines haven’t rolled out comprehensive reciprocal elite status benefits like upgrades just yet, so you might be giving up some perks, and also keep in mind that if you’re a Platinum or Executive Platinum on American, you get a 100% mileage bonus on flights, and if you are US Airways Gold (50%), Platinum (75%) or Chairman’s Preferred (100%), your mileage bonus might be bigger anyway, so this seems to be more targeted toward non-elites.
I also wouldn’t count on using this promo to boost your mileage balance in the hope of being able to combine your AAdvantage and Dividend miles accounts soon since it’s not clear when we will be able to transfer miles between accounts just yet. But if you don’t need the miles soon and are not getting an equivalent or higher bonus thanks to elite status, then this could be worth it to get some extra miles in your account ahead of the final merger. Even after the introduction of the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is still a fantastic choice if you want to avoid the Reserve’s $450 annual fee, earn 2x on all travel & dining and earn a 50,000 point sign up bonus.
Even after the introduction of the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is still a fantastic choice if you want to avoid the Reserve’s $450 annual fee, earn 2x on all travel & dining and earn a 50,000 point sign up bonus.