Conditions of Carriage

Your ticket and the following Conditions of Carriage constitute the contract between you, the passenger, and American Airlines, Inc. ("American") and apply to all transportation provided by American (including transportation on codeshare partners*) between points in the United States (including Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands).

Foreign air transportation is governed by applicable tariffs on file with the Department of Transportation.

International General Rules Tariff Link opens another site that may not meet accessibility guidelines

On some international itineraries, taxes and fees are added to the price of the ticket. Every price offered by American is the full price, which consists of the base fare, applicable carrier-imposed fees (such as surcharges), and government-imposed taxes and fees.

American will act as an agent to issue tickets, check baggage and book reservations for transportation via other carriers which have interline agreements with American. Other carriers may have different terms and conditions applicable to their flights. These may be obtained directly from the other carriers.*

Please read your contract carefully.

American Airlines
P.O. Box 619616, MD 5435
DFW Airport, TX 75261-9616

*American offers codeshare service on domestic flights operated by the following carriers: Air Wisconsin Airlines Corporation, Compass Airlines LLC, Envoy Air Inc., ExpressJet Airlines Inc., Mesa Airlines Inc., Piedmont Airlines Inc., PSA Airlines Inc., Republic Airlines Inc., SkyWest Airlines Inc., Trans States Airlines, Inc., (all doing business as American Eagle); Hawaiian Airlines, Inc.; Alaska Airlines, Inc.; Hyannis Air Service, Inc. (doing business as Cape Air); Horizon Air Industries, Inc. (doing business as Alaska Airlines).

American Airlines Conditions of Carriage

Find travel information for our oneworld® partner airlines

Definitions

  • American Ticket Office – a ticket sales location of American Airlines, Inc/American Eagle or the office of one of its appointed travel agents.
  • Baggage – Articles, effects and other personal property as are necessary or appropriate for wear, use, comfort or convenience in connection with air travel, whether checked in the cargo compartment or carried in the passenger compartment.
  • Prepaid ticket Advice – the notification between offices of a carrier or between carriers that a person in one location has purchased and requested issuance of prepaid transportation to another person in another location.
  • Stopover - a deliberate interruption of travel for more than 4 hours constitutes a domestic stopover unless specified otherwise.
  • Ticket – passenger ticket and baggage check which incorporates these Conditions of Carriage
  • U.S. – the 50 federated states and the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands

Fare changes

If, after a ticket has been issued and before any portion has been used, a decrease in the applicable fares or charges becomes effective, or a new fare between the points shown on the ticket is added, the full amount of the difference in fares less any change fees applicable to the original fare rule and date of purchase, will be refunded to the purchaser, upon request, provided there is no change in origin/destination/stopover points/flights/dates shown on the original ticket and, subsequent to the decrease in fares/charges or the addition of a new fare, all conditions of the lower fares/charges are met, including booking code and any advance reservations/ticketing requirements.* When reduced fares are for sale for a limited period of time, American reserves the right to decline to issue refunds. For non-refundable fares, the passenger will receive the difference in the fares in the form of a non-refundable American travel voucher valid only for purchase of air transportation on American, and must be used within one (1) year of issuance.

If American increases the price for the transportation, an additional collection may be made for any segments where you change your flight to a different time, date or routing from that shown on your ticket, and any segment shown as "open" on your ticket.

*Note: The purchase of a Prepaid Ticket will constitute purchase of a ticket.

Fare changes and Erroneous fares

AA reserves the right to cancel tickets issued with an erroneously quoted fare due to a technical failure or mistake, including but not limited to a fare filing error, computer error or third party error (either human or mechanical), prior to the erroneous fare being detected and corrected. AA, as a policy, does not intend to file fares that are erroneous or are reasonably apparent as erroneous. Where an erroneous fare has been published and a ticket issued at the erroneous fare, AA will void such ticket and notify the passenger that the ticket has been cancelled (i) within 72 hours of becoming aware of the publishing of an erroneous fare, or (ii) at least 24 hours prior to the passenger’s scheduled departure time in cases where the ticket is purchased less than 72 hours before the scheduled departure from the point of origin. AA will provide a refund of the total cost of a ticket purchased at the erroneous fare price to passengers so notified.

Responsibility for schedules and operations

American will endeavor to carry you and your baggage with reasonable dispatch, but times shown in timetables or elsewhere are not guaranteed and form no part of this contract. American may, without notice, substitute alternate carriers or aircraft and, if necessary, may alter or omit stopping places shown on the ticket. Schedules are subject to change without notice. American is not responsible for or liable for failure to make connections, or to operate any flight according to schedule, or for a change to the schedule of any flight. Under no circumstances shall American be liable for any special, incidental or consequential damages arising from the foregoing. Liability limits for delay on international itineraries is governed by the Montreal Convention.

Force majeure events

American may, in the event of a force majeure event, without notice, cancel, terminate, divert, postpone or delay any flight or the right of carriage or reservation of traffic accommodations without liability except to issue an involuntary refund. The involuntary refund will be made in the original form of payment in accordance with involuntary refund rules for any unused portion of the ticket. American will also reserve the right to determine if any departure or landing should be made without any liability except the afore mentioned involuntary refund.

Force majeure event means:

  • Any condition beyond American's control including, but without limitation, meteorological conditions, acts of God, riots, civil commotion, embargoes, wars, hostilities, disturbances or unsettled international conditions - actual threatened or reported. Also, because of any delay, demand, circumstances or requirement due, directly or indirectly to such conditions; or
  • Any strike, work stoppage, slowdown, lockout or any other labor related dispute involving or affecting American's service; or
  • Any government regulation, demand or requirement; or
  • Any shortage of labor, fuel or facilities of American or others; or
  • Any fact not reasonably foreseen, anticipated or predicted by American

Oversales

If a flight is oversold (more passengers hold confirmed reservations than there are seats available), no one may be denied boarding against his or her will until airline personnel first ask for volunteers who will give up their reservation willingly, in exchange for compensation of the airline’s choosing. If there are not enough volunteers, other passengers may be denied boarding involuntarily in accordance with the following boarding priority of American. In such events, American will usually deny boarding based upon check-in time, but we may also consider factors such as severe hardships, fare paid, and status within the AAdvantage® program.

If you are denied boarding involuntarily, you are entitled to a payment of ‘‘denied boarding compensation’’ from the airline unless:

  1. You have not fully complied with the airline’s ticketing, check-in and reconfirmation requirements, or you are not acceptable for transportation under the airline’s usual rules and practices; or
  2. You are denied boarding because the flight is canceled; or
  3. You are denied boarding because a smaller capacity aircraft was substituted for safety or operational reasons; or
  4. On a flight operated with an aircraft having 60 or fewer seats, you are denied boarding due to safety-related weight/balance restrictions that limit payload; or
  5. You are offered accommodations in a section of the aircraft other than specified in your ticket, at no extra charge (a passenger seated in a section for which a lower fare is charged must be given an appropriate refund); or
  6. The airline is able to place you on another flight or flights that are planned to reach your next stopover or final destination within one hour of the planned arrival time of your original flight

Domestic transportation

Passengers traveling between points within the United States (including the territories and possessions) who are denied boarding involuntarily from an oversold flight are entitled to:

  1. No compensation if the carrier offers alternate transportation that is planned to arrive at the passenger’s destination or first stopover not later than one hour after the planned arrival time of the passenger’s original flight;
  2. 200% of the fare to the passenger’s destination or first stopover, with a maximum of $675, if the carrier offers alternate transportation that is planned to arrive at the passenger’s destination or first stopover more than one hour but less than two hours after the planned arrival time of the passenger’s original flight; and
  3. 400% of the fare to the passenger’s destination or first stopover, with a maximum of $1,350, if the carrier does not offer alternate transportation that is planned to arrive at the airport of the passenger’s destination or first stopover less than two hours after the planned arrival time of the passenger’s original flight
  • 0 to 1 hour arrival delay - no compensation
  • 1 to 2 hour arrival delay - 200% of one-way fare (but no more than $675)
  • Over 2 hours arrival delay - 400% of one-way fare (but no more than $1,350)

International transportation

Passengers traveling from the United States to a foreign point who are denied boarding involuntarily from an oversold flight originating at a U.S. airport are entitled to:

  1. No compensation if the carrier offers alternate transportation that is planned to arrive at the passenger’s destination or first stopover not later than one hour after the planned arrival time of the passenger’s original flight;
  2. 200% of the fare to the passenger’s destination or first stopover, with a maximum of $675, if the carrier offers alternate transportation that is planned to arrive at the passenger’s destination or first stopover more than one hour but less than four hours after the planned arrival time of the passenger’s original flight; and
  3. 400% of the fare to the passenger’s destination or first stopover, with a maximum of $1,350, if the carrier does not offer alternate transportation that is planned to arrive at the airport of the passenger’s destination or first stopover less than four hours after the planned arrival time of the passenger’s original flight
  • 0 to 1 hour arrival delay - no compensation
  • 1 to 4 hour arrival delay - 200% of one-way fare (but no more than $675)
  • Over 4 hours arrival delay - 400% of one-way fare (but no more than $1,350)

Check-in and arrival times

Know when to arrive and what to expect at the airport and on flights operated by American Airlines or American Eagle.

You can also check the latest travel alerts and get flight status information for gates and times:

Check-in times

All airports have a minimum time by which you must be checked in for your flight, regardless of whether you're checking bags. Times will differ based on your itinerary.

Travel entirely within the United States

For itineraries that include only airports within the United States, you must be checked in 45 minutes before scheduled departure time.

Some airports require a longer minimum check-in time:

  • From San Juan, Puerto Rico (SJU) - 60 minutes before scheduled departure.
  • From St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands (STT) - 90 minutes before scheduled departure.

International Travel

For itineraries that include airports outside of the United States, you must be checked in at your originating airport 60 minutes before scheduled departure time.

Please note the 60 minute check-in time applies at U.S. airports when the itinerary includes any airport outside of the U.S.

Some airports require a longer minimum check-in time:

  • From Caracas, Venezuela (CCS) - 90 minutes before scheduled departure.
  • From Dublin, Ireland (DUB) - 75 minutes before scheduled departure.
  • From Buenos Aires, Argentina (EZE) - 75 minutes before scheduled departure.
  • From Maracaibo, Venezuela (MAR) - 90 minutes before scheduled departure.
  • From Beijing, China (PEK) - 75 minutes before scheduled departure.

Travel on American Airlines Shuttle

For flights between Boston (BOS), New York LaGuardia (LGA), and Washington D.C. Reagan (DCA):

  • Checking a bag? You must be checked in 30 minutes before scheduled departure time.
  • Not checking a bag? You must be checked in 20 minutes before scheduled departure time.

Arrival at Gate

You must be at the gate and ready to board the aircraft:

  • 15 minutes prior to scheduled departure for flights departing from points -within- the U.S., Puerto Rico, and Virgin Islands
  • 30 minutes prior to scheduled departure for flights departing from points -outside- the U.S., Puerto Rico, and Virgin Islands, i.e., Canada, Mexico, Europe, Asia, Central/South America, Caribbean, Bahamas, Bermuda

Baggage

General acceptance of baggage

Only baggage as defined in the definition section will be accepted for transportation. All baggage is subject to inspection. Checked baggage will be accepted for transportation only on flights on which you are traveling. American will not accept baggage whose size, weight, or character makes it unsuitable for transportation on the aircraft as determined by American.

No article will be accepted as baggage if it weighs more than 100 pounds or has a total outside dimension (length plus width plus height) of more than 126 inches. Additional restrictions apply to some American flights operated on smaller aircraft. For further information, contact American Airlines.

Checking your bag

Your name must appear on all baggage. Baggage will not be checked:

  • To a city not on your routing
  • Beyond your next stopover city
  • Beyond your final destination city
  • Beyond a connecting city if the connecting flight departs from an airport different from the arrival airport

Checked baggage may be claimed only by the holder of the baggage claim check. Baggage will not be released unless all sums due American are paid. Baggage claim checks must be returned to American on request. American is not responsible to determine that the holder of the claim check is entitled to the baggage. If baggage claim checks are lost, proof of ownership may be required prior to release of the baggage.

In the event your checked bags do not arrive on your flight, reasonable efforts will be made to ensure that the bag is returned to you within 24 hours for flights within the U.S., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Our goal to return bags within 24 hours applies only when we are the carrier taking you to your final destination.

Some circumstances that may inhibit our ability to return your bags within 24 hours:

  • No local name, address, phone numbers are provided
  • You are located at a remote location or an unreachable address, such as a cruise ship or a camping site
  • You changed your delivery address, but did not notify us
  • We have limited flight schedules to your destination
  • Operational circumstances that prevent American Airlines or American Eagle from being able to locate or deliver your bags within this time frame

Flights from these airports may only accept baggage up to four hours prior to confirmed departure:

  • Denver (DEN)
  • Fort Lauderdale (FLL)
  • Las Vegas (LAS)
  • Orlando (MCO)
  • Salt Lake City (SLC)
  • Seattle (SEA)

Arriving into the U.S.

When arriving into the U.S. from an international location, claim your checked bags at the first stop within the U.S. and proceed through Immigrations/Customs.

International connections to another airline

If you're flying internationally and connecting to another airline, check the applicable country's Customs procedures to determine whether checked baggage needs to be re-checked with the other airline upon arrival into that country.

Carry-on baggage

The suitability of carry-on baggage will be determined by American. Each customer will be limited to 1 carry-on bag and 1 personal item. Basic Economy customers are only allowed 1 personal item that fits under the seat. All carry-on bags must be checked.

A personal item includes a purse, briefcase, laptop, or small book bag style backpack. A personal item must fit under the seat in front of you (18 x 14 x 8 inches). Fragile or valuable items, such as keys, medication or computers should be carried in your personal item.

Learn more about carry-on baggage

At times, additional limits may be placed on carry-on baggage based on the main cabin stowage capacity of specific aircraft, which can result in carry-on bags being checked in the boarding area. In the event it is necessary to check carry-on bags, ensure that fragile or valuable items, such as keys, medication or computers are carried in your personal item. If government regulations are more restrictive, such restrictions shall apply.

A carry-on bag must fit in the bag sizer and not exceed overall dimensions of 45 inches (length + width + height). The maximum combined linear measurement of the carry-on bag cannot exceed any of the following measurements: 22" long x 14" wide x 9" tall or 114cm (56 x 35 x 23 cm). All carry-on items must fit under the seat or in an overhead bin.

Note: Customers can bring a soft-sided garment bag of up to 51 in / 130 cm (length + width + height) in lieu of a carry-on item.

On American Eagle flights each customer is limited to a personal item in the cabin, but their carry-on item (not exceeding 45 dimensional inches) will be valet checked at the gate or planeside.

Carry-on items which appear too large or irregularly shaped to fit under a seat, in an overhead compartment, or in a closet or luggage rack will not be accepted for passenger cabin stowage.

Any mobility aid or assistive device that is approved for in-cabin transport on American, and is carried by a qualified disabled passenger, is accepted free of charge and is in addition to normal baggage allowances, provided such aid or device fits in an approved stowage space.

All baggage must be completely stowed before the airplane may depart the gate.

Checked baggage

Checked baggage charges apply to the first and second checked bag, some exceptions may apply. Excess bag charges apply for more than two checked bags. Oversize and overweight charges apply to baggage over the free size and weight allowance. Specialty items may have additional charges or exceptions to baggage charges.

Hazardous items

Hazardous materials will not be accepted as baggage except for limited amounts of dry ice subject to American's rules.

See list of restricted items

Firearms

Firearms and ammunition will be accepted only as checked baggage, subject to American's rules.

Learn about transporting firearms and ammunition

Live animals

Pets (cats and dogs only) will be accepted as baggage when confined in a container, subject to American's rules and charges. A properly harnessed dog trained to detect explosives and drugs, and dogs for search and rescue will be accepted in the passenger cabin subject to American's rules and at no charge. Such official duty must be documented in writing to the satisfaction of AA. Live animals will not be accepted for interline transfer to other airline flights. Certain restrictions apply for some American Eagle flights. For more information, contact American Airlines reservations.

Traveling with pets

Liability

American's liability for loss, damage or delayed delivery of checked baggage, including transfer baggage, is limited to the actual value of the baggage or $3,500, whichever is less, unless the passenger declares a higher value for loss of baggage, not to exceed $5,000.00 including the $3,500 standard liability per passenger and pays American a sum of $5.00 per $100.00 (or any portion thereof) of excess value. Excess valuation coverage is not available for and does not apply to items excluded in our liability below.

Liability limitations

American does not assume liability for any of the following items in or as checked baggage: antiques, artifacts, artwork, books and documents, china, computers and other electronic equipment, computer software, fragile items, furs, heirlooms, keys, liquids, money, orthotics, surgical supports, perishable items, photographic, video and optical equipment, precious metals, stones or jewelry (time pieces), securities and negotiable papers, silverware, samples, unique or irreplaceable items or any other similar valuable items.

American does not accept these items in or as checked baggage and assumes no responsibility or liability for such items, regardless of whether American knew or should have known of the presence of such items in checked or transferred baggage. If any such items are lost, damaged or delayed, you will not be entitled to any reimbursement under American's standard baggage liability, or under any declared excess valuation. Do not attempt to check these items. Carry them with you in the passenger cabin (subject to carry-on baggage limitations). Fully collapsible strollers may be carried on board with the passenger as long as they fit in an overhead bin. Strollers exceeding a maximum weight of 20lbs or that are not capable of being transported inside the cabin due to size must be checked at a ticket counter. American will not assume liability when ordinary standard of care is taken.

American assumes no responsibility for loss, damage or delayed delivery of baggage not acceptable for transportation by American as checked baggage and items damaged as a result of items contained in checked or transferred baggage.

Customers with disabilities traveling with wheelchairs or other assistive devices are exempt from liability restrictions for loss, damage or delays to these items.

American assumes no liability for articles carried in the passenger cabin.

American assumes no liability for minor damage such as scratches, scuffs, stains, dents, cuts and dirt resulting from normal wear and tear.

American assumes no liability for musical instruments/recreational/sports items not presented in a hard-sided case.

American is not responsible for damage to contents if the outside of the hard-sided case is not damaged.

American will assume responsibility for damage to checked luggage when Ordinary Standard of Care is not provided. American assumes no responsibility for damage to or loss of protruding baggage parts such as wheels, straps, pockets, pull handles, hanger hooks or other items attached to the baggage that result from normal wear and tear.

American assumes no liability for any indirect, consequential, incidental, punitive or special damages resulting from loss, damage or delayed delivery of checked or transferred baggage, including, without limitation, damages for lost revenue or profits, loss of use or business interruption.

We may disallow any claim for loss or damage which contains misrepresentations, including false statements concerning whether or not the passenger has made previous claims with American or other carriers and/or where the passenger fails to have the carrier's baggage claim declaration form notarized. AA may also disallow claims when the passenger fails to provide proof of loss in the form of receipts of purchase.

Legal action

Legal action premised on or related to damage, delay or loss must be commenced within two years of the date of the incident.

Missing items

Items missing from checked baggage must be reported to American before leaving the airport or within 24 hours of the receipt of the bag.

Loss / delay

In the case of delay or loss, an initial complaint must be presented to American prior to leaving the arrival airport for which the baggage was checked or should have been checked. At the latest, such initial report must be made within four hours of the arrival of the flight on which the passenger traveled. For passengers purchasing the American Airlines baggage delivery service provided through Bags VIP Luggage Delivery in advance of travel, the initial report must be made within 12 hours of the arrival of the flight on which the passenger traveled.

If compensation is sought for a delay or loss, a written claim, in the form provided by American, must be received by American no later than 45 days after the initial report was presented and recorded by American.

Damaged baggage

No action shall lie in the case of damage to baggage unless the person entitled to delivery files an initial report with American prior to leaving the arrival airport, or at the latest, within 24 hours from the date of receipt of the baggage.

After the initial report of damage to American, the damaged property must be presented to American for repair within thirty days from the date of the initial report of damage to American.

Claims

Failure to report delayed or damaged baggage or missing contents within the prescribed time limit releases American from liability.

Acceptance of passengers

American may refuse to transport you, or may remove you from your flight at any point, for one or several reasons, including but not limited to:

  1. Compliance with government requisition of space.
  2. Action necessary or advisable due to weather, or other conditions beyond American's control.
  3. Refusal to permit a search of person or property for explosives or for deadly, controlled, or dangerous weapons, articles or substances.
  4. Refusal to produce positive identification upon request.
  5. Your physical or mental condition is such that in American's sole opinion, you are rendered or likely to be rendered incapable of comprehending or complying with safety instructions without the assistance of an attendant.
  6. Your conduct is disorderly, abusive or violent.
  7. Appear to be intoxicated or under the influence of drugs.
  8. Attempt to interfere with any member of the flight crew.
  9. Have a communicable disease that has been determined by a federal public health authority to be transmissible to other persons in the normal course of flight.
  10. Refuse to obey instructions from any flight crew member.
  11. Have an offensive odor not caused by a disability or illness.
  12. Are clothed in a manner that would cause discomfort or offense to other passengers or are barefoot.
  13. Engage in any action, voluntary or involuntary, that might jeopardize the safety of the aircraft or any of its occupants.

TSA Secure Flight Program

The Transportation Security Agency's (TSA) Secure Flight Program requires that American collect additional information from passengers when making a reservation to fly within, into or out of the United States and for point-to-point international flights operated by U.S. based airlines:

  • Full name, as it appears on government-issued I.D. approved for use when traveling
  • Date of birth
  • Gender
  • Redress Number (optional)

American may cancel your reservation if the reservation does not include the required Secure Flight Passenger Data (full name, date of birth and gender) at least 72 hours prior to your scheduled departure. This cancellation policy applies to all American Airlines tickets, including tickets for our flights operated by our codeshare partners.

Acceptance of children

Accompanied

Children 2 through 14 years of age will be accepted for transportation when accompanied by a passenger at least 16 years of age or parent regardless of age.

Infants at least 2 days of age, but less than 2 years of age, will be accepted when accompanied by a passenger at least 16 years of age, or parent regardless of age subject to:

  • For infants 2 through 6 days of age, a medical statement may be required stating the infant is stable for travel
  • One infant under 2 years of age accompanied by a fare paying passenger, may be carried at no charge, on his or her lap
  • The age of the infant is based on the age at commencement of travel

Unaccompanied

A service charge will be assessed for unaccompanied children on all flights.

  • Unaccompanied children, a child/minor under 15 years of age, not accompanied on the same flight and in the same compartment by a passenger at least 16 years of age or parent regardless of age.
  • Unaccompanied children under 5 years of age will not be accepted under any circumstances.
  • Unaccompanied children 5, 6 or 7 years of age will be accepted on a non-stop or through flights only, and must be accompanied by a parent or responsible adult until the child is boarded on the flight and the aircraft has departed the gate. The child must be met at the destination by another parent or responsible adult.
  • Unaccompanied children ages 5-7 are restricted on flights scheduled with a change from one aircraft to another type of aircraft before termination, but designated by a single flight number.
  • Unaccompanied children 5, 6, or 7 years of age will not be accepted on certain American flights operated in equipment not requiring a flight attendant. Contact American for specific information.
  • Unaccompanied children 8 through 14 years of age will be accepted for transportation on non-stop, through or connecting flights. Connecting flights must be through the following airports: CLT, DCA, DFW, JFK, LAX, LGA, MIA, ORD, PHL, PHX. Reservations must be confirmed to the destination. The child must be accompanied by a parent or responsible adult until the child has boarded the flight and the aircraft has departed the gate. The child must be met at the destination by another parent or responsible adult.
  • American does not accept unaccompanied children when their itinerary includes a connection to/from another airline, including codeshare and oneworld partners.
  • American will not accept reservations or provide transportation for unaccompanied children for any itinerary that includes the last online connecting flight of the day.

American may refuse to provide connection air transportation services at any origination city to an unaccompanied child holding reservations when there is a reasonable likelihood that the child will not make a flight connection, and therefore require overnight accommodations.

Please note our flight attendants are unable to continuously monitor an unaccompanied child during their flight.

Refunds

General refunds

Some tickets are non-refundable. If you have a refundable ticket, American will issue a refund as follows:

  • If the ticket is totally unused, the full amount paid will be refunded.
  • If the ticket is partially used, the refund will be the difference between the fare paid and the fare for the transportation actually used as determined by the applicable rules.

In addition, if the ticket to be refunded is no longer valid for transportation, an administrative service charge will be assessed upon refund of the ticket. This service charge will be collected by deducting the applicable service charge from the amount which otherwise would be refunded. Tickets will be refunded only to the person named on the ticket as passenger, except that:

  1. Tickets purchased with a credit card will be refunded only as a credit to the credit card account,
  2. Tickets issued against a prepaid ticket advice will be refunded only to the purchaser, and
  3. Tickets issued against a government transportation request will be refunded only to the government agency which issued the transportation request

Once travel has commenced, refund requests for lower fares will not be honored.

American will strive to process eligible refunds in the time frames set out below, upon receipt of all required information.

For all eligible paper and electronic tickets purchased within the U.S. with a credit card or cash, refunds will be provided within 7 business days of receipt of the required refund information. The credit card refund may take up to two billing cycles before appearing on a credit card statement, so you should contact your credit card company directly to verify receipt of the credit. Tickets purchased with a check will be refunded within 20 days of receipt of the required information.

Refunds for electronic tickets may be obtained through the refund section on our website at aa.com or by contacting American Airlines reservations.

Refunds on tickets, paper or electronic, less than $3,000 can be obtained at any of our U.S. airport ticket offices or City Ticket Offices. All other refund requests should be sent to:

American Airlines
Attention: Passenger Refunds
4000 E. Sky Harbor Blvd. Phoenix, AZ 85034

Fax: 800-892-3447
International fax: 480-693-2759

Certain refund requests cannot be accommodated in the time frames discussed above. For example, refunds for lost tickets must be held for 90 days to ensure that they are not found and used. Tickets with adjustments (for example, a customer buys a first class ticket but actually travels in the main or coach cabin) require that we verify the itinerary and class of service flown, and this can take up to 45 days. Tickets that were purchased outside the U.S. require special handling because we must ensure that currency conversion rates are calculated correctly.

Refund for credit card purchases will be made only to the credit card account.

Service charges are collected for some refunds.

American assumes no liability for any special, incidental, or consequential damages for instances in which we do not meet our goals for processing refunds.

Helpful suggestions

To ensure a prompt refund, you must submit all required documentation and information, including:

  • Valid ticket submitted to us before expiration date - tickets expire one year from the date of issue
  • Original unused flight coupons for paper tickets
  • Ticket number for electronic tickets
  • Brief written explanation
  • Your name, address, and telephone number(s), email address, form of payment used to purchase the ticket

Involuntary refunds

In the event the refund is required because of American's failure to operate on schedule or refusal to transport, the following refund will be made directly to you.

  1. If the ticket is totally unused, the full amount paid (with no service charge or refund penalty), or
  2. If the ticket is partially used, the applicable fare for the unused segment(s)

American shall not be obligated to refund any portion(s) of a ticket which does not reflect a confirmed reservation on an American flight involved in a schedule irregularity, unless such ticket was issued by American.

Whether the refund is voluntary or involuntary, American reserves the right to refuse to make any refund in a currency other than the currency of purchase or in a country other than country of purchase.

Optional products and services

The following optional products and services will be eligible for a refund if you are unable to use the product or receive the service due to denied boarding (either voluntary or involuntary) caused by an oversold flight. If the product and/or service was provided on an alternate flight, no refund will be provided.

Optional products and services potentially impacted by flight oversales include but are not limited to:

  • Main Cabin and Preferred Seats
  • Priority boarding
  • Checked bag charge
  • Same-day flight change
  • Baggage fees and charges (including excess baggage, pets, sports or hunting equipment, etc.)

If your optional product or service purchase meets the above eligibility and you wish to submit a refund request, you will be required to mail in your original documents to American Airlines before your request can be processed.

For regular mail: American Airlines
Attention: Passenger Refunds 4000 E. Sky Harbor Blvd.
Phoenix, AZ 85034

Fax: 800-892-3447
International fax: 480-693-2759

When submitting a refund request please include:

  • The passenger's name
  • Address
  • The form of payment used (including the last four digits of the credit card number, if applicable)
  • The ticket number(s)
  • The date of travel
  • The departure city and destination city
  • Original receipt for optional product purchase/fee payment

Lost tickets

Lost ticket application Link opens another site that may not meet accessibility guidelines

Ticket validity

A valid ticket must be presented for transportation. Tickets for itineraries with more than one flight segment must be used in accordance with the sequence of flights as they appear in the ticketed itinerary and receipt. If a paper ticket, the unused flight coupons must be presented attached to the passenger receipt coupon. American has the right, in its sole discretion, to confiscate any ticket that has been altered, mutilated, or improperly issued or which has been improperly presented or presented by someone other than the passenger named on the ticket.

Tickets are valid for use, reissue or refund only by the passenger named on the ticket. Unless otherwise indicated, tickets are not transferable. American is not liable to the owner of a ticket for honoring or refunding a ticket presented by another person.

Period of validity

Unless your ticket indicates otherwise, tickets are valid for transportation for one year from date of initial use, or if unused, for one year from date of purchase.

Refundable ticket validity - voluntary changes

The ticket will be valid as follows:

  • Wholly unused tickets: Travel must commence within one year from the original ticket issue date. For example; if a ticket is issued on June 1, 2012, the new ticket travel must commence no later than June 1, 2013.
  • Partially used tickets: Unless otherwise specified in the fare rule, travel must be completed within one year from the outbound travel date.

Any fare difference must be paid and tickets must be reissued when the itinerary is rebooked.

Non-refundable ticket validity

If the ticketed reservations are canceled prior to the ticketed departure time, the ticket will be valid as follows:

  • Wholly unused tickets: Travel must commence with one year from the original ticket issue date. For example; if a ticket is issued on June 1, 2012, the new ticket travel must commence no later than June 1, 2013.
  • Partially used tickets: Unless otherwise specified in the fare rule, travel must be completed within one year from the outbound travel date.

Any fare difference and applicable change fees must be paid and tickets must be reissued when the itinerary is rebooked.

Ticket validity: Compliance with terms and conditions of sale

Tickets are valid for travel only when used in accordance with all terms and conditions of sale. Terms and conditions of sale include, but are not limited to:

  1. The passenger's itinerary, as stated on the ticket or in the passenger's reservation record
  2. Any requirement that the passenger stay over a specified date or length of time (for example, Saturday night or weekend) at the destination specified on the ticket
  3. Any special purpose or status (for example, age in the case of senior citizen or children's discounts, military status in the case of a military fare, official government business in the case of a government fare, or attendance at a qualified event in the case of a meeting or convention fare) that entitles the passenger to a special or reduced rate
  4. Any other requirement associated with the passenger's fare level

Unless a ticket is reissued by American or its authorized agent upon payment of applicable charges, or an authorized representative of American waives applicable restrictions in writing, a ticket is invalid:

  1. If used for travel to a destination other than that specified on the ticket
  2. If the passenger fails to comply with applicable stay-over requirements
  3. If the passenger does not meet the purpose or status requirement associated with the fare category on the ticket
  4. If American determines that the ticket has been purchased or used in a manner designed to circumvent applicable fare rules

American specifically prohibits practices commonly known as:

  • Back-to-back ticketing: The combination of two or more roundtrip excursion fares end to end for the purpose of circumventing minimum stay requirements.
  • Throwaway ticketing: The usage of roundtrip excursion fare for one-way travel.
  • Hidden city / point beyond ticketing: Purchase of a fare from a point before the passenger's actual origin or to a point beyond the passenger's actual destination.
  • Duplicate and impossible/illogical bookings: Duplicate or impossible/illogical American Airlines bookings are prohibited without prior authorization from American Airlines. A duplicate or impossible/illogical booking includes, but is not limited to, bookings for the same passenger on flights traveling on or about the same date between one or more of the same or nearby origin and/or destination (such as JFK to DFW and LGA to DFW or DFW to LAX and DFW to ONT), or bookings with connections that depart before the arrival of the inbound flight.
  • Fraudulent, fictitious and abusive bookings: Fraudulent, fictitious and/or abusive bookings are prohibited. These types of bookings are defined as any bookings made without having been requested by or on behalf of the named passenger. Additionally, creating bookings to hold or block seats for the purpose of obtaining lower fares, AAdvantage award inventory, or upgrades that may not otherwise be available, or to gain access to airport facilities, or to circumvent any of American Airlines' fare rules or policies, is prohibited without prior authorization from American Airlines.

Where a ticket is invalidated as the result of the passenger's non-compliance with any term or condition of sale, American has the right in its sole discretion to:

  1. Cancel any remaining portion of the passenger's itinerary
  2. Confiscate unused flight coupons
  3. Refuse to board the passenger or check the passenger's luggage
  4. Refuse to refund an otherwise refundable ticket
  5. Assess the passenger for the reasonable remaining value of the ticket, which shall be no less than the difference between the fare actually paid and the lowest fare applicable to the passenger's actual itinerary

Lowest fare availability / 24 hour refund

Customers calling our reservations office or visiting our airline ticket offices or ticket counters will be offered the lowest available fare (exclusive of internet-only fares) when specific dates and times are provided. In the event the lowest available fare is not quoted, American's liability is limited to the difference between the fare quoted and the lowest available fare for which the customer was eligible at that time.

When you purchase a ticket seven or more days prior to departure by telephone with American Airlines Reservations or via aa.com for American Airlines flights (including American Airlines flights operated by codeshare partners), you have up to 24 hours from the time of ticket purchase to receive a full refund for your ticket. After 24 hours have elapsed, normal refund policies apply to the ticket. If you elect to make changes to the itinerary after the 24 hour time period, a change fee may apply and the ticket price may also change depending on the fare purchased.

Customers with disabilities

American endeavors to provide passengers with disabilities dignified, professional, and courteous service at all times. We have a team of employees who regularly consult with disability advisory groups on the quality of our service.

Reservations Special Assistance Coordinators

American reservations offices maintain a staff of Special Assistance Coordinators (SAC) who work with customers who have identified themselves as having disabilities. The reservations representative who responds to the customer's initial call passes pertinent information to a SAC who calls the customer back. A toll-free number exists for customers with disabilities to follow-up on travel arrangements with the SAC office. Airport and in-flight personnel are notified of special service requests.

Pre-reserved seats

American blocks a limited number of seats on each aircraft to accommodate customers who identify themselves as having a qualified disability. Adjacent seats are provided, under certain circumstances, for customers with disabilities who must travel with a companion for assistance.

Assistive devices

American accepts motorized and non-motorized assistive devices for transport. When necessary, we will disassemble and reassemble wheelchairs or assistive devices for customers when they travel. American provides storage for one passenger's collapsible, manual wheelchair in the cabin of each jet aircraft. This service is available on a first-come, first served basis, and has priority over carry-on baggage belonging to other customers who board at the same city, provided the customer follows the pre-boarding procedure. In-cabin stowage space for assistive devices cannot be pre-reserved, but American accepts carry-on wheelchairs, provided they collapse to fit in an overhead bin or under a seat. Non-collapsible wheelchairs/scooters are accepted as checked baggage. These items can be checked at the main ticket counter or the departure gate. American offers a special wheelchair service that allows you to check your wheelchair at the departure gate and claim it at your arrival gate free of charge. Although you can arrange to claim your chair at the connecting city we recommend that the chair be checked through to the final destination. The additional time required to claim and re-check your chair at the connecting city may compromise your ability to make your connection. American has wheelchairs and our representatives provide wheelchair service at connecting airports. Please let us know you will need this assistance when making your reservation. Assistive devices approved for cabin transport do not count towards the combined number of checked and carry-on baggage a passenger is allowed, nor do they count towards the limit of carry-on items you may bring on board.

Boarding assistance

If you have special needs, upon request, pre-boarding assistance will be provided to you, allowing you the opportunity to be seated prior to general boarding. A special aisle chair is available to assist you if you are unable to walk, and all of our jet aircraft are equipped with specially designed seats that feature moveable aisle armrests to help make seating easier.

Medical oxygen

Only portable oxygen concentrators (POCs) approved by the FAA are accepted for inflight medical oxygen. A 48-hour notice is required. Contact American Airlines at 1-800-433-7300 to obtain information regarding the required medical paperwork.

Complaint resolution officials for customers with special needs

We have employees at airports who are trained as local complaint resolution officials (LCRO) and are available during operating hours. A corporate complaint resolution official is available to assist LCROs 24 hours per day, seven days per week.

Optional products and services

Optional products and services may be purchased à la carte or in a bundle at the discretion of the traveler. Optional products and or services may be purchased to be used in conjunction with an American Airlines flight. Specific terms and conditions are incorporated herein by reference and can be found on each optional product or service page:

Aircraft information

American Airlines reservations representatives will advise you when it will be necessary for you to move from one aircraft to another during your travel, including when the flight number remains the same.

American Airlines reservations representatives are able to provide you with a wide variety of information related to the American Airlines fleets. Aircraft configuration, seat size, and seat pitch are just a few examples of information that can be obtained from our reservations representatives. This information is also available at the AA.com website.

Customer Relations

Our Customer Relations department is dedicated to addressing customer comments and unresolved concerns. The Customer Relations department will respond to our customer’s written complaints within 60 days. Customer Relations can be reached at:

U.S. Mail/Overnight Mail:
American Airlines Customer Relations
4000 E. Sky Harbor Blvd.
Phoenix, AZ 85034 Phone: 817-786-3778
Fax: 480-693-2300

Email AA Customer Relations Link opens another site that may not meet accessibility guidelines

Delays, cancellations and diversions

American Airlines will provide customers at the airport and onboard an affected aircraft with timely and frequent updates regarding known delays, cancellations and diversions and will strive to provide the best available information concerning the duration of delays and to the extent available, the flight's anticipated departure time.

We are not responsible for any special, incidental or consequential damages if we do not meet this commitment.

When cancellations and major delays are experienced, you will be rerouted on our next flight with available seats. If the delay or cancellation was caused by events within our control and we do not get you to your final destination on the expected arrival day, we will provide reasonable overnight accommodations, subject to availability.

In extreme circumstances, it is possible that a flight will cancel while on the ground in the city to which it was diverted. When this happens you will be rerouted on the next American flight with available seats, or in some circumstances on another airline or some other alternative means of transportation. If we are unable to reroute you, reasonable overnight accommodations will be provided by American, subject to availability.

American will provide amenities for delayed passengers, necessary to maintain the safety and/or welfare of certain passengers such as customers with disabilities, unaccompanied children, the elderly or others to whom such amenities will be furnished consistent with special needs and/or circumstances.

Essential needs during extraordinary delays

In the case of extraordinary events that result in very lengthy onboard delays, American will make every reasonable effort to ensure that essential needs of food (snack bar such as Nutri-Grain®), water, restroom facilities, and basic medical assistance are met.

We are not responsible for any special, incidental or consequential damages if we do not meet this commitment.

Authority to change contract

No agent, employee or representative of American has authority to alter, modify or waive any provision of the Conditions of Carriage unless authorized in writing by a corporate officer of American.

Frequent flyer award disclosure

An annual report of award redemption will be published, both at the aa.com website and in the AAdvantage Newsletter.

Choice of law

These Conditions of Carriage are governed by and are to be interpreted in accordance with the laws of the State of Texas.

Service with domestic codeshare partners

American will make our Customer Service Plan readily available to all of our domestic codeshare partners and, to the extent possible, make every reasonable effort to ensure our partners offer comparable levels of service.