American Airlines and US Airways “merge” tomorrow. That has been mentioned before but the first benefits will start showing Jan 7th of next year when you can earn and burn US Airways Dividend Miles on American Airline (and American AAdvantage on US Airways as well). There’s an article in the Dallas Morning News that quotes US Airways management as saying that reciprocated elite benefits and miles redemptions opportunities will start January 7th.
Scott Kirby who is currently president at US Airways says that January 7th will be the first day where both airlines will recognize the other’s elite status and allow miles on either program to be redeemed on both US Airways and American Airlines. They will also start codesharing with each other then. Kirby also confirms US Airways exit from Star Alliance next March and and a combined frequent flyer program by late 2014. US Airways and American has a timeline of getting a single operating certificate in 2015.
I think that in regards to miles, it’s going to be pretty financially inefficient to train USDM agents to book using AA’s system so I think the following is most likely:
Given that the article says that a new combined frequent flyer program will be released late 2014 while US Airways will leave Star next March, I’d think most likely a transfer option to AA will be opened in March, almost like BMI, because US Airways will have no alliance. Then you’d probably be able to use USDM on US Airways metal only and oneworld partners with AA routing rules until late 2014. That’s what I hope, because then that gives me (and y’all) a good timeline to burn all your US/AA miles before then.
It also doesn’t look like US Airways will be able to book awards on oneworld partners until they leave Star Alliance. Unfortunately, it also looks very unlikely that you’d be able to book oneworld awards with a USDM award chart. It will be really interesting what will happen when you booked your USDM for next November, when they will have already left Star Alliance! This is pure speculation on my part and I have no idea what’s actually going to happen, but from what I’ve read this is what I’ve logically thought of.
Link to Dallas Morning News Article