Target: Douglas Parker, CEO of American Airlines
Goal: Demand that American Airlines reinstate bereavement fares to sympathize with and accommodate grief-stricken passengers traveling for a death in the family
American Airlines recently announced that it will no longer be offering bereavement fares for people needing to book a last-minute flight because a loved one has died. Previously, the airline offered lower fares for this purpose whenever possible, depending on the route, seat availability, and departure times. Bereavement fares traditionally save passengers between 5% and 15% when booking expensive last-minute flights. When American Airlines recently merged with US Airways, it announced that the bereavement fares would be discontinued to be consistent with US Airways policies.
The last thing that grief-stricken travelers want to worry about in their darkest moments is the cost of an overpriced airline ticket. “American is moving toward that industry trend and the airline offers customers changeable and refundable options with the ability to apply future reservations to bereavement travel without change fees,” said American Airlines spokesman, Matt Miller, in a public statement. “We believe this policy is a cost-effective solution for customers in need of bereavement travel.”
However, not all airlines are using “industry trends” as an excuse to make a higher profit off of passengers traveling to grieve their loved ones. Delta Air Lines and United Airlines still have bereavement policies in place. Sign the below petition to condemn American Airlines for eliminating their bereavement rate policy and causing their passengers to endure additional unnecessary burdens.
Dear Mr. Parker,
I understand that American Airlines recently eliminated its bereavement fare policy when it merged with US Airlines. Traditionally, bereavement fares have saved grief-stricken passengers between 5% and 50% on the last-minute fares they need to put their loved ones to final rest. Without this policy, grieving passengers will suffer yet another undue and unnecessary burden.
In an official statement, you and your spokesman indicated that offering bereavement fees would offset other airline discounts and result in higher overall ticket fares. Your company also cited “industry trends” as a reason for eliminating this sympathetic and accommodating policy. However, several of your competitors, including Delta Air Lines and United Airlines, still offer bereavement fares in times of death emergency.
I am urging you to reconsider your position on bereavement fares and contemplate your decision’s impact on your valued passengers. For these people, travel is not a luxury or a choice; it is a necessity. Please put yourself in their position and extend the same courtesy that you would a member of your own family.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Aero Icarus via WikiMedia Commons