US Airways

Read a book, get miles. Or win a trip to Disney World

Remember reading?

RIF (Reading Is Fundamental) and US Airways are working together on the third annual “Fly with US. Read with Kids” program and there are just a few weeks left to help them reach their goal of getting people to read to kids for 10 million minutes.

Getting involved is easy: find a book and a kid and read the book to the kid.

Then go to the program website before October 31st and log in the minutes you’ve spent reading.

Maisy flying for RIF

There are prizes: a grand prize drawing of a Walt Disney World Resort vacation package from US Airways Vacations, US Airways gift cards, and other giveaways.

US Airways will also reward you for donating money to RIF.

Contribute $50 or more and the airline will give you 5,000 Dividend Miles. Donate at leat $25 and you can get a special edition of Maisy Takes a Trip, by Lucy Cousins.

Whether you participate in the program or not, take a peek at the Read with Kids Challenge website, which has more than a dozen games.

US Airways says “Uncle” on soft drink charges

Starting on March 1, 2008 , passengers on US Airways will once again be able to get soft drinks, juice, coffee, and water for free.


US Airways has been charging $2 (in most cases) for these items since August 1, 2008. (First-class passengers and folks traveling on trans-Atlantic flights still received free drinks.)  And while lots of airlines are unbundling  fees, US Airways was the only airline charging passengers for non-alcoholic drinks.

Here’s a link to the Associated Press article with more details about US Airways’ decision to once again offer complimentary soft drinks, water and coffee.

Birds – and other animals – at the airport

The US Airways jet that made an emergency landing on the Hudson River yesterday may be have been taken down by birds.  So today you’ll see a lot of news stories about what airports do to try to keep birds out of flight paths.

Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, the final destination of yesterday’s diverted flight, is holding a press conference today to describe its bird strike avoidance program and introduce us to the airport’s wildlife biologist/wildlife coordinator, a position created back in the 1970’s.

Lots of airports now have people on staff whose job it is to make the land around the airport less attractive to wildlife.  At Florida’s Southwest Florida International Airport in Fort Myers they have dogs: in 1991 the airport was the first in the nation to employ a dog as part of its Wildlife Management Program.


(Radar, Southwest Florida International Airport’s firstwildlife management dog)

Airport baggage scales: are they balanced?

It’s natural to wonder (or hope) that the bathroom scale is wrong when you weigh in each morning.

At the airport, it’s a different story entirely. Airlines have been getting strict about charging passengers for overweight bags to the tune of millions of dollars each year.

But last week, the Arizona Department of Weights and Measures did a surprise inspection of the scales used by Southwest Airlines and US Airways at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

According to this article in the Arizona Republic, both airlines got dinged. Southwest “had to shut down three of its 26 scales because they received red tags, the most serious violation, from the inspectors. The problem: The scales did not start at zero.”

Another reason to try to fit everything you need into a carry-on bag…..

Free drinks for (some) kids on US Airways

Starting today, August 1, 2008, coach passengers on US AIRWAYS will have to pay for all beverages – including water. Free drinks will still be available for First class fliers, trans-Atlantic passengers, and those flying on US AIRWAYS Shuttle Flights.

According to airline spokesperson, Michelle Mohr, there’s one more category of travelers exempt from this fee: unaccompanied minors.

Kids traveling alone, whose parents or guardians have paid the extra $100-per-segment service fee, will continue to receive complimentary water, soft drinks and, I suspect, milk.

So be nice to that kid on the plane. Maybe they’ll slip you a soda.