Oops: American Isn’t Eliminating Phone Ticketing Fees After All

Filed Under: American

Earlier I posted about how American’s website indicated that they were eliminating the phone ticketing fee for all AAdvantage award reservations:


The change didn’t surprise me given the two other changes which have been made recently:


Well, as it turns out, American didn’t mean to eliminate the award phone ticketing fee after all. An American spokesperson reached out to indicate that the fee remains in place, and that the website has been updated to reflect that:


I’ll be curious to see whether American actually isn’t eliminating the phone ticketing fee, or if they’re simply not doing so yet. American has repeatedly accidentally made updates to their website for things which ended up becoming policies, where it was the timing that was the mistake, and not the actual change.

I was happy to see this fee eliminated, though at the same time it seemed strange that American eliminated ticketing fees for award tickets, but not for revenue tickets. Fortunately American continues to not charge phone ticketing fees for awards which can’t be booked online.

  1. What 25BB wasnt enough? I am so sick of airlines and business in general. The govt just sits there like the idiots they are

  2. I would expect the fee will be eliminated. AA has repeatedly said no one will beat them on price and this would represent a glaring difference that would always make them higher on every fare. These fees represent huge numbers in income and there is most likely some number crunching going on to justify the business case to drop the fee.

    It looks like the accidental chart shows increases in the airport and city ticket office fee to offset the diffrerence. Why charge someone to book a ticket at the airport? The staff is already there and no one buys a ticket at the airport because it’s convenient. $50 for the city ticket office?! The only people who use those typically have no other way to book or need to pay cash.

  3. Ben,

    There appears to be a lot of chaos (I’m surprised, frankly, in that Parker seemed to have the transition under control) with various “policy changes” at American already this month.

    I flew LA-DC the other night, First Class itinerary and Exec Platinum level. I rarely check bags, but have a project where I needed to pack a lot of gear so planned to check THREE bags– always OK for First Class pax and always OK for Exec Platinum. I turn up at the Check-In (Premium section) at LA and have her say “$150 for the third bag”. I said “Huh!>?!”

    Apparently they quietly changed a bunch of rules as of tickets issued after April.

    It took 30 minutes and two conversations with the manager before they finally relented. (The counter agent told me she would be “fired” for waiving the fee.) Most troublingly, though, they had to pull out a piece of PAPER, recently issued, that looked like it’d been photo-copied 8000 times and hand-passed around… and it did confirm that an F passenger with EXP could check 3 bags for free.

    Punchline is: rules are in flux, staff are confused and even the computer systems didn’t get the memo on the changes correctly. If in doubt, call first to confirm. I nearly flipped out over a $150 “surprise” that was their error in the end.

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