US Airways rescues boy in a snowstorm

James Meickle, a 14-year-old boy on his first flight alone, found himself marooned in Albany, N.Y., on his return trip home from Lake Placid, N.Y., recently.

How he made it back to his mom, Taaron Meickle, and his family in Reston, Va., goes a long way towards countering a struggling airline industry’s reputation.
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At halftime, it’s airfare hackers: 1, United Airlines: 0

In 2013, Aktarer Zaman, a 22-year-old Bangladeshi-born engineer who grew up in Brooklyn, founded a site called Skiplagged.com that allowed air travelers to find secret savings on their tickets.

Using published online routes and fares, the site allows passengers to search for so-called “hidden city” deals.
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A compassionate United employee rescues a sick passenger

Samantha Levey became so violently ill at Mexico’s Guanajuato International Airport, she was not able to board her United Airlines flight home. Levey was alone, stranded, afraid, and could not speak the language.

A United agent, Victor Cisneros, compassionately came to the rescue, spending hours of his own time at her side while in the airport’s medical facility. He did not just comfort her, but arranged medical care, an overnight stay and new comped tickets for her flight home when she was well.
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United Airlines will now make your miles disappear like magic

Today’s story from the front lines of consumer advocacy is about the airline industry’s latest trick: a sleight-of-hand involving your loyalty program account balances.

Just like a wiley magician, United Airlines first reveals your miles — make sure you look closely!

Then you can almost hear the incantation: “Hocus, pocus!”

And then “poof!” — no more miles.
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Is United’s new frequent flier program created for wealthy rocket scientists?

Frequent flier programs have always been complicated and at times seemingly irrational, even for frequent fliers and travel agents.

But United’s new MileagePlus program takes it to a whole new level, since travelers who care about both Elite Status and award tickets now have to consider three different numbers for each trip.

No joke. And two out of three of those numbers are not obvious.
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