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CHO Prepares for U.S. Airways, American Airlines to Complete Mer - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

CHO Prepares for U.S. Airways, American Airlines to Complete Merger

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The merger between U.S Airways and American Airlines is nearly complete, but what does that mean for travel at the Charlottesville Albemarle Regional Airport (CHO)?

Since the nearly $18 billion merger between U.S. and American, there have been minor changes at CHO American's ticket counter space is currently right next to U.S. Airways. They've also moved right next door in the concourse.

"When this merger goes through, they'll have our largest market share, they'll be more than 50 percent of our market,” said Melinda Crawford, CHO executive director.

This month there's also new service through American to New York's LaGuardia airport. Delta already has service from CHO to LaGuardia, but at different times.

"It's two distinct markets, they're going both to LaGuardia, but it's two distinct services,” said Crawford.

Several states - including Virginia - sued to stop the merger in the beginning, fearing they would lose flights and jobs. As part of the settlement, U.S. and American can't cut service.

"There's a political aspect for us receiving the LaGuardia service for American. We are excited about it, we don't care how it came about,” said Crawford.

There is no word yet on how fees and frequent flier miles will be affected. For now, you can still book through either airline.

"There's a lot more options. It gives our passengers a lot more options,” said Crawford.

We're told it will be about 18 months before U.S. and American officially become one single airline. The Federal Aviation Administration will give the two airlines a combined certificate so they can operate as one. At that point, the planes and staff will migrate to the new American.

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