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BUSINESS
May 5, 2012 | By Ken Bensinger, Los Angeles Times
There are frequent fliers, and then there are people like Steven Rothstein and Jacques Vroom. Both men bought tickets that gave them unlimited first-class travel for life on American Airlines. It was almost like owning a fleet of private jets. Passes in hand, Rothstein and Vroom flew for business. They flew for pleasure. They flew just because they liked being on planes. They bypassed long lines, booked backup itineraries in case the weather turned, and never worried about cancellation fees.
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TRAVEL
April 14, 2014 | By Catharine Hamm
Question: On March 7, I flew to Sacramento from L.A. for an overnight trip. I packed light - just a dress, belt, shoes, sweats, nightshirt, a bag of toiletries and my iPad. When I arrived at my hotel and opened my bag, there was a notice that the Transportation Security Administration had gone through my luggage. When I was getting dressed, I noticed my belt was missing. I had carefully packed it in the see-through zipper compartment of my suitcase, as I didn't want it to fall out. It was my favorite belt, old, vintage, worn and funky.
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BUSINESS
December 17, 2013 | David Lazarus
Peggy Nugent wasn't sure what to make of an offer that arrived recently in the mail. "Congratulations!" it said in big letters. Nugent, of Manhattan Beach, had been selected to receive a three-day vacation in San Diego, including free hotel accommodations, two tickets to SeaWorld and a $100 restaurant coupon. The notice included what looked like a check - but wasn't - bearing the logo of SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment. What caught Nugent's eye was the fine print on the back.
BUSINESS
April 6, 2014 | By Hugo Martín
Returning from a recent leisure trip to Miami, Jerry Jorgensen landed in Detroit only to face one of the biggest frustrations of air travel: His bag was nowhere to be found. After making several dozen calls, Jorgensen got American Airlines to return his bag. But the Michigan dairy farmer was not happy. The airline "passed me around on the phone like a hot potato," he said. The good news about lost luggage is that airlines worldwide eventually recover 97% of mishandled bags. That is one of 10 surprising facts about flying with luggage that came out of a new study by international air transport technology specialist SITA.
BUSINESS
February 27, 2014 | By Hugo Martin
American Airlines has eliminated its so-called bereavement fares for people who need to book a last-minute flight because of the death of a loved one. The airline, which is merging with US Airways, said it discontinued the fare as of Feb. 18 to be consistent with the policies of US Airways. In the past, American Airlines offered a bereavement fare that was lower than typical last-minute fares but varied based on route, departure time, availability and other factors. Instead, American Airlines now offers only to waive change fees for travelers who have a pre-purchased ticket and want to use it to attend the funeral of an immediate family member.
BUSINESS
March 19, 2014 | By Hugo Martin
The merger of American Airlines and US Airways was unusual when it was proposed last year because it seemed to have the support of all the major employee unions involved. But one of the biggest unions for US Airways is threatening to strike, and the group now has the support of its union brothers from American Airlines. The International Assn. of Machinists and Aerospace Workers -- which represents about 14,000 US Airways machinists, mechanics and fleet service workers -- has been trying to negotiate a new contract with US Airways for more than two years.
BUSINESS
January 2, 2012 | By Hugo Martin
If you get a suspicious email that appears to be from American Airlines, it could be part of a scam to pilfer personal information. The airline suspects that hackers have sent out, as recently as November, what are known as "phishing" emails intended to mislead people into giving up information such as their passwords to the airline's reward program. To warn customers, American Airlines has posted several examples of the phony emails on its website. One such email says the recipient has paid $278 for a flight to New York and should download the ticket.
BUSINESS
July 31, 1996 | From Times Wire Services
Passengers on Swissair's long-haul jets later this year will get a chance to do some casino-style gambling during their flights. Las Vegas-based Interactive Flight Technologies has completed a contract with Swissair for the installation of its In-Flight Entertainment Network on all of the airline's long-haul jets. The first plane is scheduled to be equipped with the system, which will cost between $70 million and $80 million, in October and to be in flight by November.
BUSINESS
January 9, 2012 | By Hugo Martin
American Airlines, whose parent company filed for bankruptcy protection in November, is closing its operations at Bob Hope Airport in Burbank and ending flights from Chicago to New Delhi. In addition to closing operations at those two airports, the airline said it plans to cut 150 positions. "Our objective is to make our company competitive and more efficient in an increasingly challenging industry," the airline said in a statement Monday. The flights from Bob Hope Airport will end Feb.
BUSINESS
April 13, 2011
FORT WORTH, Texas — American Airlines raised the stakes in its battle with ticket sellers by suing travel website Orbitz and distributor Travelport Ltd., accusing them of monopoly tactics. American says the companies are trying to control the distribution of airline tickets to business travelers and are retaliating against American for objecting. Orbitz and Travelport denied American's charges. Orbitz said Wednesday that American was trying to grab control over ticket distribution to limit customer choice and reduce competition.
BUSINESS
March 23, 2014 | By Hugo Martin
The addition of airline bag fees several years ago created another travel annoyance: people who cram all of their travel necessities into carry-on bags to avoid the fees. United Airlines recently began a crackdown on those passengers. And it seems that many fliers agree with United. Nearly half of recent fliers who were questioned said they support United's crackdown, according to an online survey of more than 1,000 adults conducted by the London-based research company YouGov.
BUSINESS
March 23, 2014 | By Hugo Martin
More and more air travelers are buying expensive first-class and business-class seats, and airlines are coming up with some creative amenities to keep those big spenders happy. That includes scented pillows and chauffeur-driven SUVs. The number of passengers buying expensive premium seats jumped 4% in 2013 and continued to grow thanks to improved business conditions around the world, according to the International Air Transport Assn., the trade group for the world's airlines.
BUSINESS
March 23, 2014 | By Hugo Martin
Travelers protested when airlines began charging bag fees in 2008, claiming the extra charge was a blatant money grab. But a new study concludes that the nation's airlines quietly lowered fares slightly to make the bag fees more palatable to those fliers who would get stuck paying the new charge. Still, the airlines are coming out ahead because the drop in fares was so small that it did not totally offset the added cost of checking a bag, the study found. “The fact that the airlines are doing it must mean they are coming out ahead,” said Jan Brueckner, an economics professor at UC Irvine who co-authored the study with other economics experts.
BUSINESS
March 20, 2014 | By Hugo Martin
Has the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight 370 nearly two weeks ago had an effect on travel to the Asian country? It depends on who you talk to. A German-based travel website says it has seen a 22% drop in searches among U.S. users for hotels in Malaysia since the flight disappeared. But Malaysian tourism officials say they have seen no significant drop in travel to the country. The Boeing 777, carrying 239 people, disappeared March 8, sparking a massive search across miles of open sea and theories that range from terrorism to alien abduction.
BUSINESS
March 19, 2014 | By Hugo Martin
The merger of American Airlines and US Airways was unusual when it was proposed last year because it seemed to have the support of all the major employee unions involved. But one of the biggest unions for US Airways is threatening to strike, and the group now has the support of its union brothers from American Airlines. The International Assn. of Machinists and Aerospace Workers -- which represents about 14,000 US Airways machinists, mechanics and fleet service workers -- has been trying to negotiate a new contract with US Airways for more than two years.
NEWS
March 19, 2014 | By Mary Forgione, Daily Deal and Travel Blogger
Members of selected loyalty programs at Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Southwest Airlines, United Airlines and US Airways will receive free entry to JetBlue's premium TrueBlue Mosaic club for the rest of 2014 just by signing up. The offer is part of the TrueBlue Mosaic Challenge that kicked off Tuesday and rewards fliers who rack up 3,750 flight points in 90 days. Clearly, JetBlue is out to boost its Mosaic club status numbers, and it's not the first time the airline has made this offer.
BUSINESS
January 13, 2012 | By David Lazarus
Here's your fight-the-power Friday roundup of consumer news from around the Web: --Christmas wasn't kind to the video game industry. U.S. sales of video game hardware, software and accessories fell 21% in December from a year ago, to $3.99 billion, as players bought fewer games for their aging consoles, according to market researcher NPD Group. The month's poor performance was unexpected given the quality of new games, including Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, which was the top-seller, and Just Dance 3, which placed second.
BUSINESS
April 16, 2013 | By Hugo Martin, This post has been updated. See the note below for details.
Computer problems have forced American Airlines, one of the nation's largest air carriers, to keep hundreds of its flights from departing across the country. The Fort Worth-based airline said it has been struggling with intermittent computer problems for a while. Because of the latest glitch, all American Airlines flights that are on the tarmac will remain there until at least 2 p.m. PDT. [Updated , 12:45 p.m. PDT April 16: American Airlines said it would waive the change fees for passengers whose flights were delayed and who wanted to book another flight.
BUSINESS
March 4, 2014 | By Hugo Martin
Spending by international visitors to the United States continues to soar, with data for 2013 showing foreign travelers spent a record-breaking $180.7 billion on food, lodging, souvenirs and hotels. The spending by foreign visitors represented a 9% jump over 2012 and is the latest example of continuous growth since the Great Recession, according to the U.S. Office of Travel and Tourism Industries. The rise in spending is good news for Los Angeles County, where tourism is one of the largest industries.
BUSINESS
March 3, 2014 | By Hugo Martin
As another harsh storm delays thousands of flights across the United States, a new study estimates that severe weather has cost airlines and passengers $5.8 billion this winter. More than 2,800 flights were canceled Monday and another 2,900 were delayed, mostly from airports on the East Coast, because of another severe winter storm that was moving east from the Tennessee Valley and the Mid-Atlantic states. It has been an unusually tough winter for the Midwest and East Coast. A study released Monday said flight delays and cancellations have cost travelers and airlines $5.8 billion from Dec. 1 to Feb. 28. PHOTOS: The 10 richest people in the world About 1 million flights have been canceled or delayed during that period, affecting 90 million travelers, according to a study by MasFlight, an aviation operations technology company based in Bethesda, Md. For passengers, the cancellations and delays have cost $5.3 billion in lost productivity and money spent on hotels, rental cars and food during holdovers, the study said.
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