My weekend affair with AA/OW...cheating on DL.

Discussion in 'American Airlines | AAdvantage' started by rwoman, May 31, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. rwoman
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    rwoman Gold Member

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    Hi All,

    I posted similar thoughts @ TOBB, but this is a slightly different crowd, so I figured I'd share. :)

    This past weekend I completed my Platinum Challenge with my LHR-LAX-LHR trip (AA 777 outbound, BA 747 return). AA comp'ed me to Gold, so I was not flying as a total kettle for this trip.

    Prior to flying, I was very pleased with the AA customer service agents I spoke with concerning various questions I'd had regarding the challenge, bookings, and sorting out other details.

    LHR-LAX - AA137
    Check in/security - I used the T3 Business/First check in @ LHR. It was a bit slow, but painless...the agent gave me the unfortunate news that my flight was delayed by about 90 minutes and provided a new BP with the updated departure information. I handed of my suitcase (requisite British items for my family) and was on my way...getting through security very quickly.

    Departures Area - It was a total zoo between an abundance of people and less seating due to construction = got a 1 day pass to the Admiral's Club for several hours of peace and quiet before my trip. The LHR AC is very nice - food, drinks, TV's, tons of seating, and power (US, UK) all over the place!

    Flight - The FA's were great and made a very long flight tolerable!! I was not much of a fan of the food on board...but it is plane food. The IFE was okay although the CD function was not working, but there were plenty of movies and I had my iPod. I did not like the seat...found it very uncomfortable.

    Arrival - Customs/passport control was not too crazy upon arrival, but bags took a while to come on to the carousel...not unusual for LAX...I've come in on KL, AF, and DL with similar experience.

    Overall, I really liked having the direct flight. With status, much was equal between AA and DL other than the direct flight. I'm pleased to say I am happy with both carriers other than the seat comfort on AA...I was not unhappy with the BA seat on the return.

    I plan to try them again (always open to OW MR suggestions) in order to keep status on AA through 2013...DL status will already be retained with no problem. I like having options and will be interested in upgrading flights once I accrue enough miles to do so in order to experience AA's J product!

    Thanks for reading!

    :)robin
     
  2. Take.me.away

    Take.me.away Active Member

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    I love my status on AA. I was blessed to travel extra last year and made executive platinum. Love it love it!
     
  3. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    I've switched to AA as my default carrier from DL. As plt or EXP, I've found the AA elite program really to outshine DL's (I'm still pm on DL, too, just in case).

    My reasons:
    1) AA SWUs work on any paid fare, including int'l, without the k or m fare floors that DL requires
    2) one way award tickets on AA / BA for half mies
    3) in my experience, far superior low miles award availability on AA on int'l routes
    4) 5-star service for when you're traveling with the kids
    5) can use points for forward cabin on 3-class aircraft

    I'm in the NY area, so DL or AA both offer me decent schedule options. After flying both in high status For 2+ years (pm, not DM, on DL), I find AA really to be a superior offering for high status pax. If I lived in a DL hub city that wasn't an AA hub, I would probably not fly AA as much - simply to avoid connecting flights.

    However, when I'm flying to atl, bos or dca, you'll find me in the marine air terminal (or terminal d, in case of atl) at LGA.

    Ymmv.
     
    mattsteg and sobore like this.
  4. DestinationDavid
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    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

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    With your PLT status now earned you can skip the LHR AC which in all honesty isn't that great. Hit up the BA offering when in LHR instead. I don't think you'll regret the switch. ;)
     
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  5. MyTravels
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    MyTravels Silver Member

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    Nice travel report & balanced view ^
     
  6. Skye1
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    Skye1 Silver Member

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    David's advice is spot on. Forego the A/C and enjoy BA's lounges at T-3. You could also sample Cathay Pacific's as well, with their floor-to-ceiling windows. Departure gates at T-3 are often, if not always, a bit of a zoo, so best to enjoy that lounge as long as possible---stopping by the A/C on your way to the gate only to see if your flight's late, etc.
    Check out the info. posts on this forum for all the features of your newly acquired AA Plat/Oneworld Saph status, and congrats!
     
  7. rwoman
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    rwoman Gold Member

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    All,

    Thanks for your responses...it is appreciated!

    :)robin
     
  8. mattsteg
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    mattsteg Gold Member

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    As a DL hub-captive, I don't really have a ton of choice, but AA's program at the upper levels has always intrigued me as looking pretty nice. Unfortunately AA is about the worst possible option for me in terms of convenience out of MSP and traveling mostly to the western 2/3 of the US - nearly every flight would effectively be a mileage run with an inconvenient connection adding a lot of flight time.
     
  9. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    You, and your friends in atl, SLC and dtw don't have an easy alternate option.

    Cvg and mem'ers are finding the choice a little easier i suspect these days. Dtw soon?
     
  10. rwoman
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    rwoman Gold Member

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    While connecting is not always convenient, I wonder how u/g's are for folks flying other carriers in the hubs. When I lived in ATL, I never gave another thought to it but I'd imagine, at least in some cities, the u/g percentage could be decent. Naturally, this depends on an individual's flying patterns and destinations - had I not moved to the UK, I would have never really thought about diversifying my FF habits.
     
  11. mattsteg
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    mattsteg Gold Member

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    Flying the "wrong" carrier in a hub, I think you need to pay a lot more attention to the route structure you're choosing and how it matches up with your flying needs. There's probably a nice benefit to UG% and familiarity with personnel if it works for you.

    Out of MSP, the only oneworld flights are to MIA, LGA, ORD, DFW. If one was travelling largely TATL or in the eastern US, this could be OK with connections, assuming the flights into the 4 hubs are frequent enough. I would assume UG % is excellent, but don't have anything to back that up, other than experience with DL. I know when I get away from MSP, particularly on non hub-hub routes, my UG% is a lot better.

    My travel takes me to enough out of the way locations that, even flying out of MSP, I end up connecting. If I was flying east more often, I suspect that it wouldn't be that terrible, assuming enough frequency. The problem is that I mostly travel west. This doesn't work so hot with AA's routes out of MSP. I suppose I could become a regular on early flights to ORD, but overall not ideal.

    Star, on the other hand, flies to 10 destinations nonstop out of MSP. I could probably make UA/CO work for me. Destinations/hubs are well-distributed geographically and would get me where I need to go without ridiculous backtracking.

    With that said, I'm reasonably satisfied with Delta as an airline, and the extra nonstop flight options living in a hub are nice to have.
     
  12. rwoman
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    rwoman Gold Member

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    As am I, but I like having direct options as well. :)
     

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