American’s Irregular Operations Policies Just Keep Getting Worse

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American just can’t seem to figure out if it wants to compete with Delta and United or with Spirit and Frontier.

While Delta and United are making improvements to the product, American has no plans on restoring seatback entertainment or adding back to the stingy legroom on their 737s.

One of the big advantages of a major carrier is that they will rebook you on another airline, but several years ago American stopped booking non-top tier elites onto other airlines, even when the delay was their fault.

Despite being an American top-tier elite, I’ve still had horrendous experiences flying American. In January 2020 we encountered multiple baggage fiascos on American to Nassau that were only narrowly avoided thanks to my status.

In February 2021 after a flight to Maui was cancelled due to maintenance, American told me to book a hotel and they would reimburse me. They later refused as they said it was a weather related cancellation, but relented when I shared the video clip of their agent saying it was due to maintenance and that they would pay for hotels. However they refused to pay for related expenses, though Chase covered those thanks to booking on my Sapphire Card.

A week after accepting $5.8 billion from taxpayers, American went and increased their baggage fees.

And now American has made their contract of carriage worse than ever.

  • American now says its only obligation when there is a delayed cancelled flight is to refund what you pay, they no longer have to actually get you to where you’re going.
  • American reiterates that it won’t rebook you on other airline flights when you miss a connection due to American’s fault.
  • American will only pay for a hotel stay when you get a voucher from American for the hotel or other expenses.


But hey, at least we bailed the airlines out with no strings attached. 🙄

In the meantime, American goes even further down my list of preferred airlines.

HT: yelped, via DDF

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39 Comments On "American’s Irregular Operations Policies Just Keep Getting Worse"

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Spirit 2.0


With only 3 major airlines and limited capacity, it’s not like a consumer product where you can switch to another brand.


That’s a brilliant opening line. But could you quote Delta and United policy on rebooking to other carriers, just so we have it available if needed?


Time to call it what it is… American Airlines is a organized criminal operation that just happens to also fly planes. Delta is the only airlines that even remotely resembles a legit airline anymore… sad.


Is that for new tickets or retroactively for tickets previously purchased?


How that work on award ticket? Please don’t say they are going to credit me 12,500 miles and leave me stranded last minute with no ticket.

Tilech Hasnah Bkleiossaha


Can AA claim a weather delay on a specific flight, when the weather issue was not on the route that was on the passenger’s itinerary, but rather where the plane was originating? I am asking specifically in regards to reimbursing a hotel, since AA is claiming they are not required since there was weather issue where the plane was originating from, but that they still consider this a weather delay.


Good to know and will try to avoid AA.

I called them to change a flight this May, the est wait time to call back was 4 hours. I had to call them again in July for my return flight due to a visa thing, the turnaround time was 17 hours(seriously?!

I thought oh well, they must be getting a lot of bookings lately, or they are understaffed. After talking to my friend who had worked there and just quit, it turns out to be the latter case.


I recently had an awful experience with them flying CLT-CLE. Brake sensor needed replaced, so we had to deplane. A “20 minute fix” took 3 hours,and then they decided to tell us that there was a gate change and new plane. Both planes were filthy. Garbage in seatbacks, white chalky substance over some of the seats.


We need another major airline to start a hub in Charlotte 🙁 AA is all i really have on non-stop routes

Stephanie Woods

Unfortunately, at some of the smaller regional airports, there aren’t much choices. For me, Hartford is 30 minutes away. Boston is 90 minutes with no easy way to get there (the local town has blocked train service to Boston), and NYC is 3 hours by train. So AA is it for many, many routes-mostly domestic or local international-Caribbean or Mexico. Those policies are horrific, so I book my ticket with my AMEX Platinum to hopefully cover most travel delay issues.


I am curious you said luckily chase reimbursed you for other things, what did chase reimburse you for?


when flying American can i use my British airways mileage program to receive the miles for the flight? what has better opportunities for miles redemption- American airlines or British airways? meaning when I fly domestically should I give American airlines my American mileage number or my British airways mileage number? also are they equally valuable?


It’s about time for US airline consumer protection laws.

The unilateral “contracts of carriage” are horrendous and obligate the airlines to almost nothing!


Unfortunately when searching for award saver space beggars can’t be choosers.

Jack out of the Box

So basically they’re making themselves very unattractive at a time when air travel is far from its peak. What’s the business sense in that?