At this hour, US Airways’ last flight is underway. By tomorrow, the carrier becomes fully integrated into Fort Worth’s American Airlines. Managers hope to complete the merger without online reservation problems that others dealt with.
Both American and US Airways have swallowed other carriers before. They’ve also watched other airlines join forces, so they’ve presumably learned how to avoid a bumpy merger flight. American Airlines spokesperson Josh Freed said a lot of work was done months in advance to avoid US Air booking problems.
“Starting in July, if you were booking a trip for travel on Saturday, that booking took place in the American system from the start,” Freed explained. “We didn’t have to move that reservation. That reservation has existed in the American system all along, since the day you made it.”
Freed said the integrated carriers are using American’s reservation system, because American is bigger. That cut down on the number of workers who needed re-training - a lesson learned the hard way by other airlines. Freed also said communication’s been important to guide US Airways customers through the merger.
“We sent targeted emails to anybody who’s flying this weekend on what used to be the US Airways system,” Freed said, “so that they understand your ticket’s still there, your flight’s still there, everything is happening the same, but what you’ll see is the American name.”
By Saturday, US Airways will exist in memory only. The merger makes the new American Airlines the world’s largest carrier again.