American Airlines And LATAM Kill All Codeshares Effective February 1

With Delta snatching up a partnership with LATAM out from under American, and taking a 20% stake in the South American mega-carrier, American and LATAM are ending their codeshares.

American also stopped selling codeshares on routes where the two overlapped. This limited options to customers, and was done in haste immediately after the announcement. Now effective February 1 they won’t codeshare at all.

Copyright: artzzz / 123RF Stock Photo

Changes need to be made for customer reservations where travel was booked on codeshares that will no longer exist. Where a customer was booked on an American Airlines-coded LATAM flight, they’re being rebooked onto the same flight with a LATAM flight number (and vice versa). Apparently the automated process at American to do this didn’t work properly for some reservations.

According to an internal American Airlines document reviewed by View From The Wing, “[t]here were some PNRs where not all of the steps were completed” and a “cleanup process is underway.” Some reservations show flight segments for American Airlines codeshares and travel on LATAM flights in unconfirmed status, or where tickets haven’t been properly reissued.

  • Travel agencies may have booked American Airlines (001 ticket stock) tickets, but there are no longer American Airlines flights in the reservation. They’re not able to reissue tickets and American needs to fix it. However if there are still American segments in the reservation the travel agency has to fix American’s mess.

  • When American is working to fix the ticket, the procedure is:

    • Book the LA prime flight for the corresponding previous AA*/LA codeshare flight (if not already booked in the PNR)
    • Book same inventory on LA Prime as originally ticketed or lowest available inventory in the same cabin
    • If ticketed cabin is sold out, offer alternate AA or LA flights
    • Remove any AA*/LA UN/UC/NO segments (only after confirming the LA prime flight)
    • Advise the customer of their new LA prime flight number
    • Reissue the ticket as a Schedule Change
    • Add back any special meals, SSRs, OSIs, etc.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. This whole termination of partnership is a lot bigger deal than AA is making it out to be. As one who travels to South America often this going to be a big pain. Now I’ll need to make additional reservations on a non One World carrier and not have my Executive Platinum status benefits, particularly the excess baggage allowance for my fishing adventures. Its going to be troublesome and expensive for me and others, unless one goes with Delta/LATAM.

  2. I guess anything is better than your ticket cancelled, refunded, and being told to “book a new flight yourself”.

  3. @Tom E — On the flip side, you will probably be “forced” to save yourself a lot of money. For the past several years, it’s been generally foolish to buy a through fare to any secondary South American destination. The fares from the big South American cities (where flights from North America land) to other South American cities have generally been shockingly cheap. LATAM itself basically operates as a budget airline within South America. If I’m travelling on an award ticket, I try to get a free ticket to my final destination, but otherwise I just buy the domestic add-on. I have a slight bias for flying LATAM, so I’ll buy my ticket with them if I can (preferably on their Spanish or Portuguese websites, where they’e typically cheaper). Otherwise, if LATAM is more expensive, I fly their competitors. It’s not big deal, and it’s cheaper. For this reason, the end of the AA-LATAM partnership is virtually meaningless to AA passengers except for the modest benefit of award tickets in certain situations.

  4. @TomE It’s even more frustrating as, after years of enduring LATAM’s mediocre business class given our allegiance to One World, the new business is quickly being rolled out and is pretty impressive.

    I just few it on Sunday from MIA-GRU and the cabin and seats are very very comfortable and private. Probably the best cabin there is from the U.S. to S.A. The food is still lackluster but the new layout makes you quickly forget.

    This will be a hard pill to swallow going forward and not sure what I will do flying back and forth to GRU.

  5. I just completed my fourth LATAM flight this month and they are still touting their OneWorld partnership. AA has no clue how big of a loss this partnership is going to be for them as it’s just one more reason to stop flying AA to South America for those of us who travel SCL and EZE.

  6. I was wondering today… Do you think that AA’s reduction in domestic flights out of JFK helped push LATAM into the arms of Delta? I was thinking a big reason LATAM would want a partner like AA is to have a huge domestic netowork accessible from destinations they fly in to…

  7. @Joey Doubtful. I split my time between Brazil and the U.S. and can assure you that Miami is the motherlode. Probably 70% of Brazilian travelers to the U.S. are Florida bound specifically.

    Talk to anyone at LATAM and they will tell you the real reason…Delta put up the cash and American did not. The 20% investment by Delta (which is just a start) was too attractive to refuse. As well Delta was willing to take a few aircraft off their hands. AA got caught being cheap and with their pants down.

  8. @ Stuart — “AA got caught being cheap and with their pants down.” Not at all. DL was willing to MASSIVELY overpay for LATAM. Worse than Alaska’s overpayment for Virgin America. When a deep pocket wants to throw money away, there isn’t much a competitor can do.

  9. Losing LATAM will NOT be that Big of a Deal for AA or ONEWORLD when all is said and done. AA has been a Major Force in the Latin America market for Years and can easily arrange partnerships with the smaller Regional Carriers (GOL,SKY etc) if they choose and the Local Population will see no difference. LATAM is N-o-t the Carrier it Once was (Days of LAN Chile) and Many South Americans shun LATAM for crap Services. I know that I wouldn’t Fly LATAM under Any circumstance.(You damn Delta Fanboys need to Stop drinking the PR Koolaid that comes out of Atlanta to think that Everything Delta does is The Only way to Do It”.

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