An Uncomplicated Life Blog: American Airlines: Worst Airline or Worst Airline Ever?

Thursday, August 21, 2014

American Airlines: Worst Airline or Worst Airline Ever?

I'll keep this post to-the-point, because nobody likes a complainer.

I attempted to fly from Regan in D.C to Dallas on Sunday, Aug. 17 via American Airlines. I was attempting to check into my flight with my iPhone while we were driving back down the coast from Dewey Beach, and oddly, it wouldn't let me.

Worst airline? Or worst airline EVER?

A girlfriend in the car had a special American Airlines app, so she pulled it up to check out what the deal was. "Oh no!" she said, "your flight has been cancelled!"

"What?! I haven't gotten an email or a text about that! Maybe the app is wrong?" So I call their customer service line. "Wait time is approximately over two hours" says the electronic voice. WHAT? So I enter my name and number to be called back when a representative was available. This was at 3:45pm. I decided to be dropped off at DCA immediately to see what the deal was, despite my 7pm flight time.

I arrived. American Airlines was a DISASTER. There were about 400 people frantic and in-line to speak with one of the TWO PEOPLE they had staffed at their counter. I bucked up and got my place at the end of that line, when an older couple informed me that they were also on the 7pm flight, and were able to check in with a kiosk. Yay, flight isn't cancelled, right? So I go to check in, and it prints me a boarding pass for 3pm the next day. What the flying eff {pun intended}?

Randomly re-booking me to my destination 24 hours later was unacceptable to me, so I decided to wait it out in line. I figured, their customer service line would call me back before I got up to the front.

I waited in line for three hours. There was no call from any service line in that time frame. Or, as it would turn out, ever.

When I got up to the front, the best flights they had available were for 6pm the next day. They had cancelled every single flight to DFW! They weren't offering hotel or meal vouchers. Nothing. Just tough shit, we cancelled your flight, deal with it. I informed the AA staff member that I had a 13 week old who would not have daycare if I didn't get home tonight. She had the gall to tell me I was lucky to have a 3pm flight! EXCUSE ME?

Every other airline carrier was still on-time for DFW, so this couldn't be a weather issue. My hubby said it was lightly raining. The news reported 85 people had lost power - out of the fourth largest metro area in the U.S. of some ten million plus people.

The bottom line is, I have no idea why American cancelled my flight because they never reached out to me - not to tell me it was cancelled, and no return phone call from their service line. I was just SOL for the next 24 hours, and apparently, my son was LUCKY that his mom would be getting home 24 hrs after the original booked time.

That attitude and lack of response is unacceptable to me. You don't cancel flights and tell your patrons "tough shit" and shrug your shoulders while people scramble to find hotels and other arrangements. My husband, who flies extensively for work, has never had a cancellation that resulted in a 24 hour delay in his arrival. Ever. We're talking thousands of flights. I fly between six and 12 times per year and I had never experienced anything like it, until now.

American Airlines, you're disgraceful and operate a cheap, penny pinching business model. Your staff are rude and unresponsive. For that, I will never fly you again. I look forward to giving my business to Delta and Southwest.


  1. Holy cow. That's absolutely unacceptable! Maybe THAT'S why they always have issues keeping their business afloat.

    I've come to really enjoy Delta, even though I still fly AA most of the time.

    1. It's where we live, girl! AA is about $50-$100 cheaper than Delta. But you know what? I'll pay it from here on out! And, Southwest is about to have direct flights across the country when the Wright Amendment is lifted at Love Field on Oct. 13. WHOOP WHOOP!!! Cause for celebration :)

  2. That is absolutely insane! I got pissed off for you just reading this. It sucks you had to go through that. I've only flown Southwest (my fav) and America West when I worked for them before they changed over. You deserved an explanation not a "you're lucky".

    1. Right?! At least an apology! Condolences on behalf of her employer, maybe? Southwest is great! I flew them for work all the time back in my employed days, and if I got done with meetings early, they'd let me hop on an earlier flight, no problem. Loved that!

  3. They are the worst!!! Terrible along with United and Delta - I try to only fly Jetblue!! I'm so sorry that you had to go through that and the "voucher" they will send you for your inconvenience, it wont matter!

    1. Totally agree - the only airline I've never had trouble with is Southwest! And, errrr, there's no voucher. They gave me nothing. NOTHING. Can you believe that? Delta at least gives vouchers!

  4. Replies
    1. Thanks lady! You're more sympathetic than their own staff. Unreal, right?!

  5. Yeah that is just outright ridiculous! Especially without contacting anyone!