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It’s the end of an era in the airline industry. US Airways announced that its final flight will start in Philadelphia on Friday, October 16 and complete its four-city tour there the next day. Flight 1939, named for the year the airline was founded as All American Aviation, will be operated by an Airbus A321.
The flight will leave from Philadelphia for Charlotte, N.C., at 10:05am, then leave Charlotte at 2:35pm for Phoenix. It will then continue from Phoenix to San Francisco at 5:10pm. The final flight in the airline’s history will be a red-eye, leaving San Francisco at 9:55pm and arriving back in Philadelphia at 6:18am on Saturday morning.
As of this writing, tickets are going for $514 for coach and $613 for first class on the first leg of the trip from Philadelphia (PHL) to Charlotte (CLT). Prices increase to $763 for coach and $933 for first class on the Charlotte (CLT) to Phoenix (PHX) leg. Tickets on the Phoenix (PHX) to San Francisco (SFO) leg are $110 and $337 for coach and first class, respectively, and tickets on the final leg of the trip from San Francisco (SFO) to Philadelphia (PHL) are sold out.
US Airways filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2002, following a decline in travel after the September 11 terror attacks. In 2005, US Airways merged with America West Airlines under the US Airways name. Eight years later, in 2013, US Airways and American Airlines announced plans to merge under the American name, creating the world’s largest airline. This March, the airlines merged their frequent flyer programs. In April, meanwhile, the Federal Aviation Administration granted the combined airline a single operating certificate. Then, plans to merge reservations were announced in July, and the final switch to a single computer system will happen October 17.
After the last flight this Friday, US Airways will join the likes of TWA, Pan Am, Eastern, Braniff, Continental and Northwest, among other airlines that are no longer operating. Although US Airways will be gone as far as the consumer is concerned, the last of the US Airways planes will not be repainted with the American logo until late 2016.
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