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Like a Vacuum Cleaner or a Child with a Lollipop…

…apparently, with regard to airlines:

…and, just in case there was any doubt about United Airlines…

One FlyerTalk member asks:

…to which the response is, apparently definitively…

Sometimes, once is not enough, as in the case with the Continental Airlines OnePass frequent flier loyalty program:

The Internet web sites of airlines are apparently not immune either:

Once can suppose the grass is really greener on the other side…
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Mystery: The Case of the Disappearing Beverage Carts

Some FlyerTalk members are boarding US Airways flights as passengers and finding out that, other than such beverages as water and coffee, drinks are allegedly not being served on-board those flights due to the conspicuous absence of beverage carts.

What is the reasoning behind having a Drink Cart Removed…? Could it be a fiendish plot by US Airways to save money by cutting back on serving free drinks on-board their aircraft, as some FlyerTalk members have speculated, or could there be a different yet more plausible reason?

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Hit the "Sack" on US Airways…for US$7.00

You may not want to be caught sleeping through the offer that US announces the Power-Nap Sack: Pillow & a blanket for $7. After all, this is a deal where these kits normally cost US$20.00, and those who purchase these kits on-board US Airways flights for US$7.00 can take them home.

Here is some additional information pertaining to this deal:

Each US Airways Power-Nap Sack includes a cozy 34 x 60-inch fleece blanket, a soft-to-the-touch inflatable neck pillow, eye shades and foam ear plugs neatly packaged inside a reusable, navy blue fleece drawstring bag embroidered with the US Airways logo.

As an added value, each US Airways Power-Nap Sack includes a coupon for $10 off the future purchase of any SkyMall item.

As usual, FlyerTalk members discuss when pillows and blankets offered on-board US Airways aircraft during flights used to be complimentary in the economy class cabin — although one could not take them home — and whether or not those passengers in the premium class cabin still can have complimentary use of pillow and blankets…

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Bonus Miles Return to US Airways Dividend Miles Members

Back on 13 June 2008, The Gate reported that US Airways Eliminates Earning Bonus Miles for Elite Members.

However, FlyerTalk member DMInsider, who is the Director of Marketing Programs at US Airways, announces that “US Airways is announcing the reinstatement of Preferred bonus miles and the 500 mile segment minimums for all Preferred members. We’ll be awarding retroactive Preferred bonus miles for flight activity from August 6 through November 19, 2008. We’ll also be retroactively posting segment minimums for flight activity from May 1 through November 19, 2008.

The company will also be announcing that all Dividend Miles members will receive a minimum of 500 miles for each segment flown on US Airways Shuttle. US Airways Shuttle 500 minimum miles accruals will also be retroactively credited for qualifying flights taken between May 1, 2008 and Nov. 19.”

Of course, some FlyerTalk members who are US Airways Dividend Miles members are happy, some believe that this is a step in the right direction, some believe that this is too little too late, and some are rather skeptical in general. Their reactions and opinions to this news can be found in the MERGED THREADS – CONFIRMED: US Airways Bonus Miles To Return (Retroactive) thread.

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US Airways to Cut In-Flight Entertainment on Domestic Aircraft

The cuts just keep on coming at US Airways.

Now, in addition to all of the fees, the reduction or elimination of elite benefits, the devaluation of Dividend Miles, the increase in prices on such items as drinks, service charges and fuel surcharges, US Airways has announced that it will eliminate in-flight entertainment on its domestic aircraft, except for flights to Hawai’i.

This is a song that many US Airways FlyerTalk members are not happy to sing, and that is putting it mildly.

Is this a smart business decision, or is it simply another “nail in the coffin” for US Airways?

More details and opinions can be found in the ensuing discussion in the US to discontinue domestic IFE (Now confirmed by the company) thread.

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US Airways Announces Fees for Dividend Miles Awards Redemption

I rarely post two consecutive items from the same FlyerTalk forum here in The Gate, but the news coming from US Airways recently has been quite shocking to some FlyerTalk members.

What used to be free is no longer free: on top of the fees and surcharges one already is required to pay when redeeming a Dividend Miles award ticket, one also must pay up to an additional US$50.00 just for the privilege of redeeming an award ticket.

Obviously, FlyerTalk members in the US Airways forum are in an uproar, to say the least. Many are threatening to leave the Dividend Miles program altogether.

There is more news: if you want a drink on US Airways – even a bottle of water – the charge is US$2.oo. Alcoholic beverages increase to US$7.00 from US$5.00.

More details and reaction from FlyerTalk members can be found in the 6/12 US Airways Updates: Fees, Charges for drinks, Ends bonus miles (Merged Threads) thread.

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US Airways Eliminates Earning Bonus Miles for Elite Members

If you are an elite member of the Dividend Miles frequent flier program of US Airways, you may be in for a shock.

Elite Dividend Miles members enjoyed the privilege of earning bonus Dividend Miles with their flights for many years.

That privilege will soon become extinct.

Read the Attention: US to eliminate Preferred Mileage Bonus! (Merged thread for this topic) thread for additional details, as well as reaction from FlyerTalk members who are Dividend Miles Preferred elite members.

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Hungry for Changes at US Airways? No More Snacks on Domestic Flights

Because snacks will allegedly be eliminated on domestic US Airways flights in the United States, some FlyerTalk members are twisted like the pretzels that will no longer be served, according to the No More Pretzels on US Airways (Merged Threads) thread. Other FlyerTalk members think that this latest change in policy and procedure on US Airways will amount to little more than peanuts regarding cost savings. Still others believe that this opens up an opportunity to sell more expensive snacks on-board each flight. Some FlyerTalk members even believe that charging for a drink of water may be imminent in the future.

Do FlyerTalk members have a right to have a chip on their shoulders, or are they just nuts?

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Merger/takeover rumours

There has been a lot of discussion lately on mergers and takeovers amongst airlines.  Here is a (likely incomplete) summary, excluding the DL/NW merger which has been announced.

Continental

Merger with United Airlines, CO forum thread on merger talks called off

Alliance with American Airlines, AA forum thread, and CO forum thread, and BA forum thread and B6 forum thread.

US Airways 

Merger with American Airlines, US forum thread

Merger with United, UA forum thread and US forum thread.

Lufthansa

Takeover Brussels Airlines, LH forum thread.

Takeover bmi, BA forum thread.

I’m sure I’ve missed some threads, so if you have more to add please post a comment with a link.

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