Good-Bye, American Airlines

Dear American Airlines,

I’m sorry to say that this is a Dear John letter. I was true to you! What happened?

I have flown American since 1960. That’s 54 years! I was even one of your flight attendants for two years following college and before starting my career.

Since then, I’ve flown you all over the country and many times to Europe and the Caribbean. I have over 200,000 unused miles with you.

But first you ditched your iconic logo, recognizable world over, and replaced it with an anonymous pattern of stripes. After your merger with US Airways, you pulled all your service out of Santa Barbara, leaving not even one measly flight to LAX!

For those of us who always fly American, there is no convenient way to get to LAX. (And why should Santa Barbarans abandon our lovely airport? It is close to town, there is no traffic, the parking is easy, the personnel are friendly, and security takes 1/100th of the time that it takes to get through at LAX.)

If only you and US Airways had worked out some of those pesky details before announcing and putting that merger into place. Your systems don’t talk to each other, and US Airways, our default choice out of SBA, doesn’t recognize my hard-won Gold status with American Airlines, nor will it allow us to use our accumulated American mileage to upgrade.

Besides, sometimes we don’t want to be routed through Phoenix in order to get to LAX!

Sadly, it looks like I am going to have to transfer my loyalty to United, which still flies out of SBA and flies direct to LAX. They say there’s a first time for everything.

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