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View Full Version : ZED Information?


Gjalston
01-24-2011, 01:10 AM
Hi! My husband is deployed with the military at the moment, but is a USAirways pilot. I'm trying to plan a surprise trip and don't understand ZED fares (what they are, how to use them, how to purchase them, etc.). Would someone please take a minute and explain this all to me? Thank you so much!
As an aside, we normally travel non-rev on USAirways and I understand how to do that. Is it better to travel USAirways to Hawaii or go the ZED route on Hawaiian Airlines if their loads are lighter? Or are ZED fared best reserved for places USAir doesn't fly? Thank you again!
P.S. My husband has been with USAirways since 1999 - he's not a new hire (if that makes a difference)


osuav8r
01-24-2011, 09:32 AM
I'll take a stab at explaining at it. ZED stands for something like Zone Equivalent Discount. There are different zones based on how far you are traveling. All the zones are are a range of mileages from where you depart to where you are going. The farther you go, the more they charge you.

At my airline (Not US Air), I have to go the employee travel office and have them print up the ZED passes for me. I tell them where I want to go and Which airline I plan to travel on and they figure out the mileage and calculate how much to charge. ZED passes are issued for the airline that you plan to use them on, so they will say for example:

Air France JFK-CDG

The strange thing is that you can actually walk up to another airline that serves the same exact city pair and hand them the ZED pass and they should let you use it. So say you were planning on traveling on a ZED from JFK to CDG on Air France. You get the airport and the Air France flight is full of revenue passengers ( You ride standby on a ZED pass) so you don't make the flight. You see that Lufthansa has a flight a couple hours later from JFK to CDG. You should be able to take your ZED pass that says JFK-CDG via Air France to the Lufthansa Airlines ticket counter and get on their JFK-CDG flight with it if there's room. Now some agents will not be aware of this and might not want to accept a ZED pass that says Air France on it, but as long as the departure and destination citys are EXACTLY the same, it should be usable on any airline between those two citys.

There is a website called FlyZed.com that you can use to check flight schedules and loads. You will need a username and password that is specific to employees of your airline. The employee travel office should be able to tell you what the username and password for flyzed.com is or maybe someone that works there can send you a private message with it. Once you figure out where you want to go, go to the employee travel office and tell them you want a ZED pass. Once you have the ZED pass, it is good for some extended period of time ( I think it's a year or so). When you want to travel, you call the airline you want to travel on and list. After that, you just check in at the ticket counter like a normal passenger. You will need a Customer service agent to process your ZED pass and issue you a boarding pass. After that you ust go through security and wait at the gate until they clear standbys.

iaflyer
01-24-2011, 09:47 AM
A good summary, a few things missing. You buy ZED fares ahead of time from your airline's ticket counter (ie, US Airways), then sometimes you call the airline you want to travel on and make a standby reservation. (depends on the airline, my airline has a page for each airline with explanations how what to do).

A smart traveler buys zeds for a couple of different routes, because they are completely refundable if you don't use them.

Also, ZED fares usually are the last on the standby list - after employees, buddy pass riders, etc. But a good way to get to/from of a place where your airline doesn't go or is full.


dojetdriver
01-24-2011, 10:17 AM
The strange thing is that you can actually walk up to another airline that serves the same exact city pair and hand them the ZED pass and they should let you use it.

The key word there is should. Also, that other carrier has to have a ZED agreement in place as well. The airline travel office will have a list of which carriers use have a ZED agreement and which use an ID agreement. It seems as if ZEDs are becoming more common and ID's less and less.

That's the way they're supposed to work. When they are ordered from your companies pass office they have a departure-destination on them, as well as the airline. This has a tendency to completely throw some agents off as they think the ZED must be used on the specific route by the specific airline. Especially in the U.S. where the use of ZEDs isn't as common as in foreign countries.

Most other countries are savvy to the concept, but it can be difficult when a language barrier is tossed in.

AZFlyer
01-24-2011, 11:45 AM
Gjalston, I work for US in PHX (where our Hawaii flights originate) and will try to answer your specifics about getting to Hawaii...

Is it better to travel USAirways to Hawaii or go the ZED route on Hawaiian Airlines if their loads are lighter?
If you don't have a specific Hawaiian city that you need to get to, there are more options for getting to Hawaii on US than via Hawaiian Airlines. Hawaiian Airlines only serves PHX-Honolulu. Depending on the day of the week, there are up to 5 daily departures to the Hawaiian Islands on US from PHX. The reason why this is useful, is that you can greatly increase your odds of simply getting to Hawaii, and then if you need to get to another island, buying confirmed last minutes seats on Hawaiians inter-island service is usually very affordable; on the order of $50-$70, and they have departures every 20-40 minutes, it seems.

So, my personal opinion, is that it would usually be easier and cheaper to non-rev on your benefits on US to Hawaii.

Or are ZED fared best reserved for places USAir doesn't fly?
Usually, yes. Off the top of my head, I personally have never bought a zed pass for a destination that I could get to on US.

If you have access to your husbands login credentials for the employee website, you can download two very useful .pdf documents regarding ZED travel. The first document shows all of the zone distances and their respective prices for ZED HI, MED, and LO (HI being the most expensive ZED agreement, and LO being the cheapest). This is useful so that you can see how much your ZED pass is going to cost you before you even talk to the airline about buying one.

The second document shows what the specific ZED agreement is between US and every other airline that we have an agreement with for ZED travel. Describes whether it is a HI, MED, or LO agreement, and which types of dependents are eligible for ZED travel, and other important bits that you should know ahead of time.

I keep both of these documents on my smart phone and home computer. Never travel without them as well, as you may need to educate (politely) an ignorant ticket/gate agent about your travel agreements (this is not uncommon, I'm afraid).

With you being a US employee dependent, all you need to do is go to any USAirways ticket counter and you can buy your ZED passes there. No need to send away via mail or go to a specific station like some airlines require.

And finally, you (or your husband) should be able to check the Employee Travel Center website to check flight loads on all US flights. Makes it easy to determine if you even need to worry about buying a ZED on another airline.

Good luck!

full of luv
01-24-2011, 12:08 PM
Gjalston, I work for US in PHX (where our Hawaii flights originate) and will try to answer your specifics about getting to Hawaii...


If you don't have a specific Hawaiian city that you need to get to, there are more options for getting to Hawaii on US than via Hawaiian Airlines. Hawaiian Airlines only serves PHX-Honolulu. Depending on the day of the week, there are up to 5 daily departures to the Hawaiian Islands on US from PHX. The reason why this is useful, is that you can greatly increase your odds of simply getting to Hawaii, and then if you need to get to another island, buying confirmed last minutes seats on Hawaiians inter-island service is usually very affordable; on the order of $50-$70, and they have departures every 20-40 minutes, it seems.

So, my personal opinion, is that it would usually be easier and cheaper to non-rev on your benefits on US to Hawaii.


Usually, yes. Off the top of my head, I personally have never bought a zed pass for a destination that I could get to on US.

If you have access to your husbands login credentials for the employee website, you can download two very useful .pdf documents regarding ZED travel. The first document shows all of the zone distances and their respective prices for ZED HI, MED, and LO (HI being the most expensive ZED agreement, and LO being the cheapest). This is useful so that you can see how much your ZED pass is going to cost you before you even talk to the airline about buying one.

The second document shows what the specific ZED agreement is between US and every other airline that we have an agreement with for ZED travel. Describes whether it is a HI, MED, or LO agreement, and which types of dependents are eligible for ZED travel, and other important bits that you should know ahead of time.

I keep both of these documents on my smart phone and home computer. Never travel without them as well, as you may need to educate (politely) an ignorant ticket/gate agent about your travel agreements (this is not uncommon, I'm afraid).

With you being a US employee dependent, all you need to do is go to any USAirways ticket counter and you can buy your ZED passes there. No need to send away via mail or go to a specific station like some airlines require.

And finally, you (or your husband) should be able to check the Employee Travel Center website to check flight loads on all US flights. Makes it easy to determine if you even need to worry about buying a ZED on another airline.

Good luck!

Great advice, also, you can get get a ZED fare to go interisland on Hawaiian, although like stated before, a last minute confirmed ticket may be the same price if it is a slow time of year in Hawaii, ie not Xmas or Spring/Summer.

If you were determined to ZED to Hawaii, then I would use LAX as there are the most options there from all the majors, multiple times a day.

If you are trying to stay at the Hale Koa in Hawaii, don't dispair if at first they say they are full, there are often many last minute canx's, get on their standby list.

Also, if you are military, there are many more cool options for lodging in Hawaii like the Kbay Beach cottages, Bellows Cabins, White Plains beach cabins, not to mention others on Kauai and the Big Island by the Volcano. Just depends on what you are looking for.

Waves are gettin large today, and it's a beautiful sunny day!
LUV

Gjalston
01-25-2011, 08:14 AM
Thank you so much to everyone who responded! There is a lot of great information included and I now feel like I have a handle on what ZED travel is all about. AZFlyer - I've printed the pages you referred to off the employee website, and those will be very helpful. Thanks again everyone!

Grumble
01-25-2011, 01:19 PM
As a side note, you should be able to fly military Space-A unaccompanied if he's deployed and are trying to get to him for a visit.

full of luv
01-25-2011, 10:25 PM
As a side note, you should be able to fly military Space-A unaccompanied if he's deployed and are trying to get to him for a visit.

She can't fly unaccompanied overseas (Hawaii included) unless her husband (sponsor) is stationed overseas and she has a sponsorship letter from his command (basically stating the above).

Although that sounds cruel, most of those rules are imposed by congress back in the 50's at the airlines behest to protect against competition from the military airlift command taking away too much business.

Grumble
01-25-2011, 10:32 PM
I stand corrected.

moswald
02-09-2011, 06:38 PM
My husband has worked for United for 34 years. ZED stands for Zonal Employee Discount - It is based mostly on whether the particular airline you are going on charges low or medium rates but they are better than the traditional ID90s which is what we used to use. It just depend on what airlines are contracted with US Airways. You should be able to access a website called flyzed.com with a user name and password and it will give you an idea of who flies there and when and also what there loads are like. You can usually purchase the tickets right at the US Airway ticket counter or a call line. They usually don't want you to call in unless you are at least 2 weeks out so it gives them time to deliver the tickets. You should be able to use the ZED ticket interchangeably on any airline that offers your airline a ZED fare. If it were me I would take US Airways to Hawaii instead of another airline due to the fact that your seniority means something if you travel non-rev on US Airway. We usually fly ZED only when its necessary. Hope this helps~