US Airways companion ticket fine print de-mystified

by on Mon March 18, 2013 • 111 Comments
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photo-3The $99 US Airways companion ticket that comes each year for US Airways Dividend Miles World MasterCard holders is a source of confusion for a lot of people. That’s because it’s loaded with fine print, but if you use it right you can save hundreds of dollars on your next trip.

If you meet the requirements, it will let you bring along up to two companions on a trip for $99 each, while you pay the normal airfare of $250 or more.

So what are the catches? Well, we combed through the fine print and these are the ones that matter…

  • It’s only good for round trip travel in the lower 48 United States – no Hawaii or Alaska
  • You must call-in to make the reservation at least 14 days in advance
  • The base ticket you buy must have a roundtrip airfare of at least $250 – and it must be a basic roundtrip – you must return home from your destination city
  • You must use your US Airways MasterCard to make the purchase
  • You can bring up to 2 passengers at the $99 special fare, but all three of you must travel at the same time
  • You can’t travel on the specified blackout dates listed here (these generally include major holiday periods and sporting events in select cities like the Super Bowl)
  • You must mail the physical certificate to US Airways after making your reservation – this is NOT an electronic voucher
  • If you change the date or cities of your trip, you may lose the $99 benefit on that itinerary

But other than that your’e in good shape. One of the surprising things is there is no specific fare bucket you have to find to be able to book the companion ticket. Usually deals like this require availability in the very lowest discount fares. But here, you just need to find a fare of $250 or more that has enough seats for the 2 or 3 of you.

What about the merger? Your companion ticket benefit remains in place for now – the Dividend Miles MasterCard will remain the same until 2015. After that, Barclays will send you a new American AAdvantage card with the same account number. We’re not sure the companion ticket benefit will remain after that, but there is a good possibility it will, as this new American AAdvantage card will be separate from the one Citibank issues.

> Click here to apply for the U.S. Airways Dividend Miles World MasterCard

 

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111 thoughts on “US Airways companion ticket fine print de-mystified

  1. HH

    Hello, I will be calling the Reservations number within the next few days to book travel with my $99 companion certificate. I had a few clarifying questions, though. I am looking to purchase roundtrip tickets for myself and one companion. Is it $99 each way or is it $99 total for the companion’s travel (plus taxes)? I understand that the base ticket I buy must have a roundtrip airfare of at least $250, but does this mean that each way must be $250 (pre taxes) or does the round trip total have to be at least $250 (pre taxes)? I look forward to hearing from you. Thank you.

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @HH – The prices for both are for the roundtrip cost. $99 roundtrip for the companion and $250 minimum roundtrip for your airfare.

      Reply
  2. Mark

    What about purchasing an unrestricted coach ticket for the primary? Does that imply that the companion tickets are also unrestricted (changeable)?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Mark- Unfortunately with the companion certificate if you make any change you will lose the $99 fare for the companion and have to pay the full fare.

      Reply
  3. Miles Silverman

    1. As a Silver status preferred Dividend Miles member, will the miles flown on my full price ticket still count toward my preferred miles status when using this certificate to buy a companion ticket for my wife?
    2. Will we still be eligible for upgrades to first class seats (within the normal 48 hr window) with both tickets, just like when we fly on 2 full fare tickets?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Miles Yes – you will earn miles as usual and the usual Preferred upgrade rules apply for these tickets.

      Reply
  4. Nancy

    Can you use a companion fare as part of the airfare portion of a vacation package or does the entire package need to be paid for with a credit card?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Nancy – The entire ticket must be paid for on its own, not part of a package to get the Companion fare.

      Reply
  5. BrianL

    My anniversary date will be March 15, 2015. Can I use the companion ticket for travel dates of May 5, 2015, but purchase the tickets prior to my anniversary date? In other words, purchase my ticket before the anniversary date with my travel date later, or do I have to wait until I get the certificates and then book the tickets?

    Thanks

    BiranL

    Reply
  6. Beth

    Hello, my mastercard came in the mail about 3 weeks ago but I have not received companion tickets. When will I be receiving them? Can they be sent to my email?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Beth – They should have been in the welcome packet with your card. But you can call Barclays and they will issue a new set if you can’t find them.

      Reply
  7. Michael

    Hello,

    I am in an all-out battle with Barclays currently. I have had a UsAir Mastercard since 2005. Every year, I get my companion certificate mailed, no issues. Now, as I am ready to book travel, I couldn’t find it and called for a replacement. They told me that my account was changed to a no-annual fee account, and thus, my benefits were dropped. They refuse to reinstate the benefits, even with paying the fee. I’ve talked to a number of people – all unsuccessfully. The best they could suggest was to apply for the same card through Barclays, which I reluctantly did. And then they denied my new account request. When I contacted them, I was told that the decision was made because I already had a UsAir MC through them!

    I am beyond frustrated with them. My current account carries no balance, has never had a late payment, and I’ve been a customer for almost a decade. Severely disappointed with their customer service.

    Any suggestions?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Michael – Can you send us a message with your first and last name via our Contact Us page? Will pass it on and see if someone can help at Barclays. If you don’t want to do that, an option is to file a complaint via the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The banks really stop in their tracks and pay attention when you do that, and you can file one here:

      http://www.consumerfinance.gov/complaint/

      Reply
  8. Nancy B

    I already made reservations to use $99 Companion Certificates, but now I need to travel for business and would be best if I could leave from the city we are travelling to. Can I send them home without me? Or will that void the tickets somehow?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Nancy – If you flying on the way out with them it shouldn’t be a problem for you to miss the return. No guarantees, but since you’re not asking US Airways to fly you on a different day at the same price should be fine. But no need to alert them early; maybe say at the airport you couldn’t make it and will make your own arrangements to get home.

      Reply
  9. Tom Lee

    I have two questions:
    1) I searched on US airways website and found AA flight. Can I purchase the AA flight use my US airways master card and also got two $99 tickets for my two kids?

    2) How to get the $99 tickets for my kids? Do I must call to book the tickets, or I can do it online and there is option for the $99 tickets?

    3) if I have three children, can I book one tickets and get two $99 tickets for my two kids, and my wife book her ticket at full price and get another $99 for the third kid? We both have the US airways master card.

    Thank you

    Tom

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Tom- Unfortunately you can’t use it on AA flights even if they’re on the US Airways website at this time.

      For 2) yes you must call in to use the certificate, and 3) that will work if your wife also pays an annual fee on her US Airways card and has separate certificate.

      Reply
  10. Lee

    We flew from Milwaukee to gulf shores, al, thru Charloette, nc using a $99 companion ticket. My wife wants to go back a few days early while I want to stay the entire time on the ticket. Will we be penalised if she goes back early, even if she buys a new ticket? Would I be penalized flying by myself without my companion on the original return flight? Help

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Lee – Just tell them at the gate on the day of your flight that she couldn’t make it and will make her own arrangements. No guarantees but that shouldn’t be a problem, especially since you’re not asking them to let her fly free on the other day.

      Reply
  11. Western bound

    Two week family road trip this summer from Grand Canyon to Rushmore, including Primary cardholder, son, and husband. Can the companion certificate be used for Primary & son to Phoenix – then, husband one week later to Seattle – and then all three on same exact flight home out of Rapd City?

    Reply
  12. PADad

    Great information! I have a couple of travel vouchers from being bumped off of some oversold flights. My question relating to these companion certificates is I’m wondering if I can use those vouchers toward the purchase of my flight (at least $250), or to cover the $99 companion ticket.

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @PADad – Officially you are supposed to use your US Airways MasterCard to pay for the first ticket. But it might be worth calling and trying with your vouchers, no harm in hearing them say no if they do.

      Reply
  13. Craig

    I received my U.S.Airways Dividend Miles card in November, 2013. I DID NOT RECEIVE ANY $99 TRAVEL COMPANION cards at that time. How do I get those? I have a premier world Master Card. I am planning on using the companion card in October, 2014. Will I receive the cards in time to book the flight?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Craig – Give Barclays a call at the number on the back of your card. They can send you a one-time replacement set.

      Reply
      1. Bob

        I actually called Barclays and they sent me one in my credit card inbox while i was still on the phone with the woman. I was surprised with how easy that was.

        Reply
  14. Paul

    I’ve heard that in order to use the companion ticket you have to first go to the airport to pick it up… is this true? The closest airport to us is 125 miles away. This doesn’t make sense, why would they force you to go to the airport to just to pick upo a ticket, why can’t they simply mail it, or let you redeem the certificate on-line. I’d like to apply for the MC, but if this is true, it’s of no value to us. Thanks for your help

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Paul – That’s not true – they will automatically mail you the companion ticket voucher to your home address.

      Reply
  15. Chayne

    If my husband and I plan on two trips this year, one in June and one in October, can we use one of the companion tickets in June and the other in October? Or do you have to use both companion tickets at he same time?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Chayne- Unfortunately both tickets must be used on the same flight at the same time. You could bring a third person along on your trip at the special $99 fare.

      Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Kevin – Yes, if you lost your companion certificate you can call Barclays and request they mail you a new one. It will take 2-4 weeks for the replacement certificates to arrive.

      Reply
  16. JAA

    I am the primary account holder. My husband also has a card in his name on the same account. Can he use the companion tickets for our children if I am not on the flight?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @JAA – Unfortunately it’s only good when the Primary account holder is one of the ticket holders on the flight.

      Reply
  17. Janine

    My sister lives in another state and we want to the companion ticket so that we can go on a trip together; however, we will be flying out of different airports but to the same destination. Are we able to use a companion ticket or do we have to be on the exact same flights?

    Reply
  18. IlsaVrett

    Hi…..I signed up for my card at the end of October, 2012. Did I get companion tickets then, after paying my annual fee or do I get them once my anniversary date passes??? 4 of us are travelling. Can I buy a ticket, use my 2 companion tickets and then use air miles for the 4th ticket???? Thanks.

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Ilsa- You should have received them then – you can call to ask for replacements, though they will expire soon and you will get another set after your anniversary date.

      As for 4 tickets – yes, just call and book the 3 tickets – one cash, two companion tickets. Then, separately, book the 4th ticket with miles on another phone call or using the US Airways website. Just make sure a miles ticket is available on the flights you want.

      Reply
  19. Kristian castellano

    If I were to buy a first class ticket can I fly my dad first class as it said all travelers must travel same class

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Rana – Officially that’s against the rules, but if you want to do that, just check all of you in online for the return trip. Then, whomever will actually travel just goes to the airport and takes the flight. Though probably polite to let the gate agent know 2 weren’t able to make it.

      Reply
      1. Susan

        What if it’s the primary ticket holder who doesn’t show up for the flight? Let’s say all three are checked in online for the return, but only the two companions actually make the flight?

        Reply
        1. MileCards

          @Susan – For the return flight probably nothing happens, people get sick, etc. But expect to pay more if the primary holder wants to fly at another time later.

          Reply
  20. Leslie

    Can you use award travel miles toward a flight (and get the flight fully paid for with miles) and use the companion pass?

    Reply
  21. Kristi

    How serious are they on this 14 day rule? I have a last minute trip that I am hoping to use a companion pass for – It is 13 days away. Can that be waived?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Kristi- Wouldn’t count on a waiver – it’s a discount fare rule so probably set in stone, but can’t hurt to ask.

      Reply
  22. Nikki

    If I purchase a ticket for me and my companion, could I buy my 2nd companions ticket a while later, if it’s the same flight?

    Reply
      1. Nikki

        Thank you. I have one more question, are there different us airways MasterCards? I am looking at my companion fair certificate and it says I’m only allowed one companion ticket for $149. Does this mean I can only bring one person on for $149?

        Reply
  23. Cheryl

    Can I use my airline miles and still use the companion ticket? Or do I need to pay cash/credit in order to use the companion ticket.

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Lizette – It depends on whether the fare bucket you booked into originally is still available, and whether the new dates fall on the ‘blackout dates’ for the certificate. At minimum you’ll be faced with a change fee for *each* person which could make it more expensive than just buying a new ticket.

      Reply
  24. Chris

    I see that up to 2 guests may travel using the companion ticket. Does that mean for each use of the companion ticket you may take two guests? Or does each guest require their own companion ticket?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Chris – Yes, you get one companion certificate, and that certificate lets you bring up to two guests at the companion fare on the trip with you.

      Reply
  25. Bob

    Can you purchase a First Class ticket and use the companion certificate for a second?? Same flight and traveling together..

    Thank you

    Reply
  26. David Bank

    Our card just renewed and we were notified we’ll receive the two companion coupons but have not yet gotten them in the mail. Is there any way we can book the tickets without the physical coupons in hand?

    Thanks!

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @David- Yes you do need the certificate – they’ll ask for the code on the front of it and ask you to mail it in the next day. Very old school method, but unfortunately that is the process.

      Reply
  27. Val

    I want to purchase a First Class seat for my husband (who is 6’8″ and needs the leg room) and the $99 companion ticket for me to fly Coach. How do I do this online? Thank you.

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Val – This will sound absurd, but we called them and they say you can’t buy a first class ticket for one and have the companion come along. Apparently to them ‘companion’ has to ticketed in the same cabin. However…you are eligible to use your miles to request an upgrade. Call back after you ticket and put in the request. If you get a nice agent they will split the record and you can just request an upgrade for your husband. You might want to check that there is mile upgrade space first before buying the ticket, as often it is not available, and otherwise you will need to wait list and hope space opens before the flight departs.

      Reply
  28. Jennifer

    Hi! I am a secondary cardholder and the certificates arrive in my husbands name (primary card holder). Is there anyway for me to travel and use the two certificates without my husband traveling with us?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Jennifer- Unfortunately no, the primary card holder needs to be the one who purchases and flies on the cash ticket.

      Reply
  29. R. R. Reed

    WE are anxious to use our companion ticket but are unable to get through to a human being on the phone. Is there a good phone number that will be answered to make a reservation and purchase tickets/

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Suzannah – Yes, they can on occasion be replaced. Just call the Barclays customer service number on the back of your card and note you misplaced the welcome kit with your companion certificate. They can send another one in 2-4 weeks.

      Reply
  30. Pat

    If we have a trip planned and are using a companion ticket and our plans change, can it be used for another travel date?

    Reply
  31. EVELYN QUE

    My card will arrive in a few days.Planning a trip on july 18.A welcome kit will be mailed shortly.Is the companion ticket included in that kit.How soon do you think i will received it.Do i have enough time to book a companion ticket? Or use an award miles that i will earn since i’m using my card right away to purchase my husband’ticket

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Evelyn – Unfortunately wouldn’t count on that. They don’t issue the companion certificate until the statement that has the first annual fee has been paid. So it could be another 2 months before you get one.

      Reply
  32. EVELYN QUE

    THE USAIR MASTER CARD IS UNDER MY NAME. I WILL USE IT TO PURCHASE MY HUSBAND’S TICKET AND I WILL GET A BONUS MILES AFTER USING IT AND PAYING MY ANNUAL FEE.ENOUGH MILES FOR AN AWARD TRAVEL.BUT IT’S TOO LATE TO USE THIS ON THIS UPCOMING TRIP.CAN I USE A COMPANION TICKET FOR MYSELF. MY HUSBAND FOR SURE WILL TRAVEL. I’LL TRAVEL ONLY IF I CAN GET A COMPANION TICKET OR AN AWARD TICKET.

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Evelyn – Yes, you can use the companion ticket for you as the companion. It’s completely transferable.

      Reply
  33. Curious

    Is there any option to purchase an international companion ticket, even if it’s more than $99? For example, do they give you a $199 international companion option?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Carson – Unfortunately no. They will operate as separate airlines for quite some time – perhaps a year or more.

      Reply
  34. Stephanie Yohn

    I’m very upset this is at least the second time this has happened! My companion ticket must be purchased by 2/28/13 and my travel must be completed by 5/31/31. I would like to use it but we are traveling 6/19/13-6/26/13 for a wedding. called the company and they say there is nothing they can do. The new voucher was mailed on 5/28 and should arrive in 2-4 weeks. By then it will be too late as travel must be booked 14 days in advance.What the hell. This does not help me now. Once again I cannot use the items that I pay the yearly fee for, because they are in the mail????

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      Stephanie – Sorry to hear about that. Sounds like what they are sending you now is a replacement for a lost one. The original should have arrived back when your annual fee came around (sounds like that was in Jan / Feb) – either it got lost at home (looks like junk mail) or they forgot to send.

      Reply
      1. Stephanie Yohn

        No I have the original. My anniversary date is may 28th. That is when they charge me the fee and send out the new voucher. So there is a 2-4 week period of time were I do not have my voucher, which makes it actually like 6 due to the fact that one must book travel with voucher 14 days in advance. So technically I must book my summer travel before2/28 and travel before 5/31 which means I can not travel and use the voucher at all in june and am lucky to be able to travel by the end of July. I guess I’m just saying it is kind of a scam since I can’t travel with the voucher in the summer. The vouchers should be mailed to arrive at ones house before the old one expires! Or in the mean time someone at USAIR should be able to provide me with the voucher number to utilize while the new one is in the mail. I’m sure I’m not the only one this happens to! After I use my miles up. I am cancelling this card

        Reply
        1. Stephanie Yohn

          Actually I feel they should send out the voucher so it arrives by 2/28. Then I would be able to book and travel anytime using the voucher except for the blackout dates of course. There has got to be someone besides a person who doesny speak English very well and gets their answers from a book that I can talk to about this big problem.

          Reply
          1. MileCards

            @Stephanie – Yes that makes a lot more sense. Strange that they have that gap, first we’ve heard of it.

  35. Pat

    The card comes with 2 compnaion tickets @ $99 each if a full price ticket is purchased greater than $250 round trip to the same destination at the same time, for a total of 3 people, if used at the same time; with that being said, can a 4th ticket (@ full price) be purchased for a 4th person to travel with the other 3 people, we plan to travel together (4 adults) to an out of town family event. Thanks!

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Pat – Yes you can buy a 4th ticket on the same flight. Not sure you can have that person in the exact same reservation, but no reason that person can’t buy a ticket for the exact same flight as the other 3.

      Reply
  36. Ryan

    If there is a secondary card holder can that person use the $99 ticket for another person other than the other card holder?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Ryan- As long as the secondary cardholder uses the card to purchase you should be able to bring whomever you’d like as the secondary cardholder’s companion.

      Reply
  37. Mike D

    My girlfriend and I are planning on flying from Virginia to California on July 11th. We will both be leaving at the same time, on the same flight. But she needs to return on an earlier flight (16th) and I will be staying until the 20th. Can I use the companion voucher on her flight? Note: Currently Her flight is cheaper.

    Reply
  38. Connie

    Thanks for the info. Does the flight have to be on US Airways metal or does it just need an associated US Airways flight number?

    Reply
    1. amber

      Can a $99 companion ticket be purchased when the full price flight is booked using dividend miles?

      Reply
  39. atferrer

    The card comes with two companion tickets. Do you have to use them on the same trip or can you split them up…for example if my husband and i travel roundtrip somewhere in November and then together again in December. Using one companion ticket in the first month and the second ticket in December.

    Reply
      1. tali

        there is a misleading comment above. all 3 people must travel at the same time. you can not split the companion tix.

        Reply
        1. MileCards

          @tali- Yes thanks for pointing it out. Was made under the assumption she had access to 2 companion certificates, which is not the case.

          Reply
  40. Samatha Brown

    What are the fees associated with the companion ticket? Also, does the the $250+ ticket have to purchased at the same time as the companion ticket or can I bok the $250 ticket through my company’s travel agenct and then purchase the companion ticket for the same exact flight?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Samantha – There are some small taxes (usually around $10 or so) associated with the companion ticket. Unfortunately you can’t purchase the first ticket with your company’s travel agency. They require you use your US Airways Mastercard to purchase both tickets.

      Reply
      1. Sam Brown

        Ok, so if the credit card my company has on file is my USAirways card and they book a $250+ plane ticket for me am I able to purchase the comapinon ticket? If so, what next steps do I take, after my company’s travel agency purchases and issues my plane ticket (purchased w my USAir credit card) do I call USAirways to buy the compainon ticket and reference the purchased ticket?

        Reply
        1. MileCards

          @Sam- Unfortunately the base ticket has to be purchased directly from US Airways and issued at the same time as the companion tickets.

          Reply
  41. Angela Walker

    Can you use a companion fare on a multi-city destination? For example I would like to fly to San Francisco and from Los Angeles.

    Thanks

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Angela – Unfortunately no, just standard roundtrips qualify. They would call that an ‘open jaw’ and don’t allow that with the certificate. Probably best to buy a cheap ticket between San Francisco or Los Angeles if you can find one.

      Reply

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