American / US Merger Integration Challenges: Double Crediting Cross Carrier Points

The integration phase of the US Airways and American Airlines merger is on.  Just like any large integration, there are bound to be challenges and glitches.

I think we have discovered a big one.

It appears that for some, if not all flights where a passenger flies American Airlines but includes his US Airways number on the reservation, the passenger gets credited for the flights to both his American Airlines account AND his US Airways account.

I received a report from a friend whose co-worker had this situation, and sent me the screenshots to prove it.

The friend’s coworker, let’s call him Boris, bought flights from his travel agent, American Express to fly from San Francisco to Houston.  Boris has no status with American Airlines and Silver with US Airways.  He bought a first class flight, operated by American Airlines with a routing of San Francisco – Dallas – Houston.  At booking, his American Airlines number was provided.  After booking Boris called American Airlines and changed his frequent flier number to his US Airways number where he has silver status.  He has since taken the flight.

Boris has checked his American airlines and US Airways accounts and now sees this:

US Airways Statement for Boris

US Airways Statement for Boris

On Monday January 20 Boris flew first class on American SFO – DFW – IAH.  US Airways shows these flights as earning 1,464 miles and 500 miles as well as bonuses of 366 miles and 125 miles respectively.

American Statement for Boris

American Statement for Boris

For the same flights on January 20 American Airlines shows these flights as earning 1,464 miles and 224 miles (he has no status with AA) as well as bonuses of 732 miles miles and 112 miles respectively.  These bonuses are the 50% bonus for flying American and crediting to US Airways or vice versa.  And he earned no Silver 25% bonus on the American flights like he did with US Airways.

The systems are obviously a bit out of sync on the dates, and also the flight numbers.  I suspect they are referring to the codeshare flight number instead of the actual flight number.

How long will this glitch last for?  Probably not for long.  US and American’s IT systems aren’t speaking together effectively, at least not at the moment.  That can change soon with some manual intervention.

The Bottom Line:

All in all for this 1,689 nautical miles of flying, Boris earned 2,455 US Airways miles for taking the flight and being silver and 2,532 American miles for flying American but crediting to US Airways. 

Since he had his US Airways number on the reservation, I believe he should have only earned 2,455 US Airways miles + a 50% bonus on the 1,689 of 845 miles for a total of 3,300 miles for this 1,689 nautical mile flight.  In reality he earned a combined: 4987 miles, an error in his favor of 1687 miles.

Poke some holes in this analysis.  What could be causing this other than merger integration teething?