1. I just read through your friend’s DOT complaint.

    1. AA is being stupid because it shouldn’t be creating a reservation
    2. Your friend just wasted massive amounts of his own time – you can view the seatmap on the screen where the pricing/flight options are shown. Just click the “+” and you can View Seats.

    AA needs to make this right but your friend Joel should save himself some major headache by not using this complex process to view available seats.

  2. Glad to see your friend declining the return of his miles. I have only recently learned to always stand up for my rights, even if I risk incurring a loss. In then end, you come out ahead by standing up for what’s right.

  3. As much as I want to nail American for their behavior I think that the DOT will throw this out. I say good for your friend. At a minimum he has cost American Airlines a lot more than 60,000 miles in legal fees. Good way to stick it to them. I wish everyone did this.

  4. So here’s an interesting scenario–I booked a flight using AAdvantage miles and needed to switch to a different flight. Such a change can’t be made online, so I called AAdvantage. The flight I wanted to move to had award availability online, but the agent’s computer wasn’t showing availability. So she asked me to put a hold on the flight, and then she was able to use my record locator from the hold to move my flight. How is this not in the same realm as what your friend did?!

    Makes no sense.

  5. I am curious how this works with an online travel agency. AA will list their inventory to a Global Inventory System and the online agency will check inventory to see if a seat is available.

    One can remain anoymous in this process and potentially view the inventory. I wonder if this “blocks” a seat or not in the AA inventory system via a 3rd party.

    Have not really played around with this but in general all on line systems should try to prevent a denial of service. I could make a lot of bogus AA accounts and just start going into their “flawed system” and seat block thus preventing sales.

  6. Good for him for continuing the fight on behalf of the rest of us. ShAAme on AA for fighting it. They are wrong and they know they are wrong, now they are just embarassing themselves.

  7. I will happily give your friend 60k miles for standing upto AA for these poor closed-door practices.

  8. If we want to make our voice heard maybe we should leave a comment in the case.

  9. Please thank your friend for standing up for all of us who are forced to fly AA! I filled out a pop-up survey on the DoT website when I first viewed his complaint. I told them I will be watching closely how they handle what is clearly abusive behavior by AA.

  10. I just wanted to let you know when I first read this story that I liked AA on Facebook, copied the link to your your article and posted that I thought he deserved an answer… I received a response to my post asking for a bit of clarification of what I was asking for the response on, but nothing after that. I don’t fly AA and have only ever earned enough miles in all my flying time for an upgrade, but it was the lack of of a proper/appropriate response at the beginning that got me… Not a very good business practice. The subsequent responses have not been much better.

  11. DOT’s complaint process includes a mechanism for interested members of the public to offer their views. If you’re like to do so, just go to!docketDetail;D=DOT-OST-2014-0077 and click “Comment Now”. It’s easy — just fill in the form and press submit.

    I understand that DOT staff carefully review public comments in order to evaluate the number of passengers similarly situated and the relative importance of the various matters before them. If you think this matter is important — whether for Mr. Hayes’s experience personally, or for AA needing to revisit its approach to alleged “security” violations by passengers, or for some other reason — this is an easy and appropriate way to submit your view.

  12. Good for your friend for not accepting AAs offer. They should have given him the miles back months ago. Asking for that option after they’ve forced him to escalate?

    Too late.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.