So American Airlines and US airways have finally tied the knot. This has been coming for a number of months now and is a sad final chapter in the otherwise illustrious history of American Airlines. They've suffered from at least a decade of atrocious management and union bullying that has turned them from one of the global elite airlines into frankly a bit of a joke. Recent high-profile horror stories of flights delayed by days (not hours), seats detaching in mid flight, and disastrous union negotiations have made a bad situation for American even worse. Even a mediocre rebranding effort couldn't take the focus away from a Legacy airline that was drowning in its own mediocrity. But what about plucky US Airways? Remember, US Airways is in fact America West, the latter acquiring the former several years ago. US airways (and former America West) CEO Doug Parker seems to have a knack for pushing these massive merger deals through on a seemingly regular basis. I can't understate how extraordinary it is that America West gobbled up US Airways and now American Airlines, one of the most storied brands in travel history. I never been a fan of US Airways but they've managed to make this recent merger work and I think the spirit of America West still trickles into the product from time to time.
What remains to be seen is if Parker has the wherewithal to steer American Airlines out of its current dilemma or whether he just took a massive gulp from a very poisoned chalice – only time will tell.
Consumer won't see any change for very long time. These types of acquisitions have to go through all types of regulatory redtape before they can even begin to consider how to integrate products, frequent flyer programs, fleets, etc. But I can tell you know that I would rather slam my fingers and adore over and over again that be the project manager on that little endeavor.
American Airlines' parent company filed for bankruptcy protection more than a year ago.
With a history stretching back 80 years, five years' ago, American had grown to be the world's biggest airline.
It was a pioneer of the loyalty programme for frequent fliers and also brought in the system of sliding prices according to demand.
But deep losses pushed the company into bankruptcy, with the company blaming labour costs and the unions blaming poor management.
US Airways, by contrast, has been profitable in recent years.
The two companies have been in discussions since last August when they signed an agreement to exchange confidential information.
The carrier will be run under the American Airlines brand, but the chief executive is expected to be the current US Airways boss, Doug Parker.
Not including affiliates, it will have around 900 aircraft and run more than 3,000 flights, employing 100,000 people.