Joe Brancatelli, who writes the JoeSentMe travel newsletter and is a longtime industry observer, said in an email to members: “Don't go to the airport hoping things will be straightened out by the time you get there. They won't.”
What's a traveler to do?
Brian Kelly, who runs the website ThePointsGuy.com and is a frequent traveler himself, offers these suggestions:
--Act first, worry about a refund later. If your schedule is such that getting there is critical, make other arrangements. You can duke it out with American later.
In a tweet earlier today, American said it would waive its change fee.
--If you can’t get through on American’s reservations number — (800) 433-7300 — try calling one of its international lines. Try to use Skype so you don’t run up a big phone bill, Kelly said. You can find a list of those numbers here.
--You can try to get help at the airport lounge. Not a member of American’s Admirals Club? You can buy a day pass online or at the club for $50. At LAX, AA’s website says, you’ll find a lounge at Terminal 4, on the Concourse level across from Gate 40.