My latest trip on US Airways

As some of my friends and followers know, I have a sordid relationship with US Airways. It was my carrier of choice until after a disastrous year of air travel in 2007, where I earned around $1200 in vouchers due to countless incidences of mishandled irregular operations and poor customer service. I went from Chairman’s Preferred to Platinum Preferred to Silver Preferred to non-elite from 2007-2009. I still find it hard to give US Airways my money.

Recently I flew a four-segment, roundtrip award ticket to Providence, RI on US Airways by redeeming Continental OnePass miles. Overall, the travel was just OK. It was very basic transportation. The two longer, mainline segments between Charlotte and Providence were honestly quite boring. There is no in-flight entertainment, no power outlets for one’s own portable electronic devices, no Gogo inflight Internet, and no food at all (free or for sale). There is one pass of the beverage cart.

One incident I found bothersome is that US Airways, like other carriers, sells “Choice” and exit row seats. Before departing Charlotte, a flight attendant invited anyone to come sit in the exit row. There was a lady seated there who had paid an extra $27 for her exit row seat and she was upset that people were invited to sit there for free. In this case, I think the flight attendant was just trying to help people have more room, but what she did was contrary to company policy. The woman who purchased the seat had a right to be angry and she told the flight attendant she would be writing to complain. I don’t blame her. Either sell the seats or don’t sell the seats, but don’t give away paid seats in front of paying customers.

My trip ended with a delayed US Airways Express flight. First we had no aircraft, then no crew, and then we sat on the runway for at least 30 minutes waiting in line to take off. When I arrived at my home airport, my bag didn’t make it, and I had to stop and file a baggage claim. The end result was that I arrived late for an appointment and my bag was delivered five hours later.

My recommendation regarding US Airways is that if you want a no-frills, bare-bones method of air travel, then this is the airline for you. However, if you want more, select another carrier.


2 thoughts on “My latest trip on US Airways

  1. It sounds like US has done exactly what they set out to do a couple of years ago – operate as a Low Cost Carrier. They stripped out all features and amenities, charging customers for the few things that remain. I mean, it’s not like you can take out the exit or bulkhead rows, so why not make some money by “selling” them.

    At least, that’s how they operate the domestic routes. I’ve heard very good things from people who have very recently flown in Envoy Class between PHL and LHR. “Haves” and “Have nothings”.

    They’re not Southwest, who achieve this low cost model quite well. Southwest manages to charge extra for… extras. Like priority boarding. Nor are they Spirit, who do it exceedingly well, charging for anything that’s not nailed down.

    It saddens me, because they used to be a fine carrier..

  2. I agree with you 100%. I commented on some pics on Facebook of the new US Airways’ Envoy suite seating and meal service that there is where all of the airline’ s money is going, into their international service, while domestically, US remains a poor attempt at being Southwest or Spirit.

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