The fleet was older, and thus had higher fuel and maintenance costs. Drawing from mergers and its own fleet, USAir had overlapping F28's, F100s, DC-9s, BAC 1-11s... it was a complicated and inefficient network.
IIRC US retired the BAC 1-11 before even merging with Piedmont and retired the F28 before Stephen Wolf took over in 1996. He is the one that changed the name to US Airways.
USAir tried to establish a stronger North Atlantic presence through an alliance with British Airways. This included a bizarre "wet lease," in which USAir 767s were painted to look like BA aircraft.
They were more than just painted, they got compete BA interiors too which ended the original 2x1x2 forward cabin configuration from Piedmont. FAs also wore BA uniforms complete with hats. I remember flying on two 767s with the BA interior on CLT-PHL and PHL-LAX. The FAs were wearing US uniforms, but I can't remember if the exterior said US or BA. They wanted a standardized 767 cabin and US also flew them to CDG, FRA, and domestically.
Instead of the reliable hourly shuttle service between Southern California and Northern California, customers experienced horrific delays, as that shuttle service was replaced with flights coming from the east coast, which were routinely delayed, driving customers away by the hundreds, and into the waiting arms of Southwest Airlines, to whom the PSA operating manuals were gifted shortly before absorption. Within a year, the PSA presence USAir had so wanted was gone.
While most of PSA's was dismantled soon after the merger, US continued to operate the California Shuttle between LAX and SFO for several more years. Even in 1995 a few flights still existed between LAX-SFO, LAX-LAS, LAS-SFO. They also flew LAX-SAN on a 757 but it was a thru flight from CLT which had nothing to do with PSA. They also had US Express flights to place like FAT, PSP, etc.
Florida Shuttle even had its own frequent flier program, the "US Air Florida Shuttle Club" which like Southwest at the time gave awards based on segments flown.
The Florida Shuttle started with Piedmont in 1985 with the purchase of used F28-1000s. After that Piedmont purchased Empire Airlines which had a fleet of F28-4000s and a hub in SYR.https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=B2HBIm2TV6o
D L X wrote:
In so many ways, US was the most underrated airline in aviation history. Not only did US basically create the 737-300 and 737-400 (they saw what could be improved in the 732 and gave Boeing design ideas)
US was the launch customer for the 733 and Piedmont was the launch customer for the 734.
The 762s were real old. They were Piedmont 1980s builds
No way they would be flying today
About half of them were built and delivered to Piedmont in the 1980s for its CLT-FRA and CLT-LGW services. The others were ordered by USAir post merger.
Piedmont received six total beginning in May 1987 and launched them on 6/15/87 for the TPA-CLT-LGW flight which was their only transatlantic flight. Piedmont intended to fly them to FRA one day but FRA service didn't begin until a couple of years after the US merger. Piedmont also flew them on CLT-LAX, BWI-LAX, and BWI-TPA.
How reliable were the US Air/Piedmont 762s compared to AA’s current 763s?
Considering the MAX crisis, does Doug Parker regret getting rid of them? In 2015 he was still using them to connect CLT with MCO and RSW.
I didn't realize US flew the 762 CLT-RSW but it doesn't surprise me.
During their last couple months of service, the 767-200s were on the MCO-CLT route. It is rare to see a widebody on that route nowadays.
Actually in November and December, American had four A330 flights per day flying between CLT and MCO, which was half their flights.
Wolf was a corporate raider who was coaxed into every head job he took (Republic, Flying Tigers, United, US Airways) and basically redid the image, then sold the company to an outside party, usually resulting in a merger or takeover. When the US/UA deal fell through in 2001, he had a lot of egg on his face. His reputation was basically ruined. I appreciate the geniune interest in the subject matter, but you have to realize airlines were not profitable all the time previously and although you would see some ceremony when certain fleet types were retired, not all types were created equal.
Wolf changed the name and livery to make a world class airline, he said USAir said like a national or regional carrier.
These are the sole reasons US changed the name to US Airways. Stephen Wolf was giving the airline a complete makeover so he could sell it for a high price.
What was Business Class like on their 767-200s?
There is quite a few videos on youtube that show the 767 cabin. There is actually an excellent nose to tail interior video (of a refurbished and pre refurbishment)
Here is a great nose to tail interior video of the 767s as delivered to Piedmont with the 2x1x2 forward cabin. It's taken at night before a Piedmont red-eye flight from LAX-BWI. The link should start at 8:12http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rCndegVzMxU&t=8m12s