US Airways flies off into the sunset

Travel News 21 Oct 2015

Following a 2013 merger with American Airlines, US Airways is the latest airline to disappear into the skies.

US joins defunct airlines that include TWA, Continental, Eastern, Pan Am, among others. Flight 1939 was the last US Airways flight to take off – named after the year the airline was founded. The flight departed San Francisco on Friday evening, October 17th, 2015 and landed in Philadelphia the following Saturday morning. The FAA issued the airline a single operating certificate earlier this year in April, meaning all US Airways flights have been operating under the American call sign since then.

Flight 1939’s last day trek started off in Philadelphia, stopping in Charlotte, Phoenix and San Francisco, with the curtains closing on its way back to Philadelphia. Each gate throughout the day celebrated the airline’s farewell flight with decorations, US Airways airplane models, souvenirs and cupcakes for the airline's final passangers. “Thank you for joining us on the very last US Airways flight," a flight attendant announced onboard the final redeye flight. "We look forward to making new memories with you on American Airlines.” After touching down in Philadelphia on the early hours that Saturday morning, passengers were applauded by a huge crowd at the gate.

Behind the scenes, the important work had been taking place. American formulated a three-month process, as opposed to an abrupt overnight changeover. US Airways reservations have been getting moved since mid-July (2015) to ensure a smooth transition, unlike the merger between United Airlines and Continental Airlines, which resulted in months of delays and cancellations. Leading up to Flight 1939, airport staff around the country had also begun the final stage of merging the two reservation systems and replacing signage.