Be prepared for your flight to Charlotte to be delayed or cancelled.
We were flying back Sunday, September 1 when our flight was cancelled. After passing through Customs and waiting at the gate from 7:30 AM (for a 9:30 departure) we were informed there was a delay due to maintenance. About every 30 minutes to an hour we were informed that there was still an issue and more info was to come.
Around 11 AM they handed out 5.50 Euro vouchers. Great, but the cheapest sandwich on the menu at the only restaurant is 6.25. I had to beg them to give a voucher for our 6 month old so I could buy some extra bottled water to make up his formula. The argument was that since the infant was a lap traveler and not full price that they wouldn't give out vouchers. His "seat" cost about $150 and I told them it was worth the 5.50 to just give us the voucher. They finally gave in. We had enough spare formula and water for a two - three hour delay but not for the length of time that we would be put through. We ended up spending about 30 euro buying diapers and all the formula at the airport. We probably would have been fine on diapers but I'm sure glad they sold formula as well.
At 1 PM, almost 6 hours after we got there, our flight was cancelled. Meanwhile the flight to Philadelphia, scheduled to leave at 11 AM, was cancelled right around their scheduled departure time.
According to some of the concessions staff, US Airways has had these problems pretty consistently for the last few weeks. The waitress mentioned that US Airways was cancelling flights due to maintenance about 3 times a week. Both planes were tugged over to another area of the airport and just sat on the tarmac. They were still there the next morning.
The Philly and Charlotte passengers had to go back through a quick customs check to be let back into Ireland. We then proceeded to get our bags from the baggage claim. We then waited in a very long line to get hotel lodging for the night and reschedule flights. While in line, they passed out toll free 800 numbers to call and reschedule but this only worked if you had a mobile phone that worked in Ireland and were prepared to pay roaming fees. They also got the lodging and transport setup. We never made it to the front of the line by the time everything was organized so that wait wasn't as long as it could have been.
While continuing to wait for the bus to the hotel I called the 800 number. The earliest flight they could promise was Tuesday morning, 48 hours after our initial scheduled departure. They also mentioned to call back later as more flights may become available.
They arranged a charter bus to take us to a hotel about 20 minutes away. The Carlton in Blanchardstown. It was a nice hotel and they provided free lunch and dinner. I can't complain about the hotel at all. US Airways apparently had the Carlton airport hotel booked with all the Philly passengers and Charlotte was sent to the other one. By the time we got to the hotel it was 3:30 PM. Lunch was at 4:30. Dinner at 8:30. No vouchers for breakfast or food the next day.
I called the 800 number two more times and was denied anything earlier than Tuesday. I heard from other passengers that they were able to get flights on Monday. I called back a third time and finally got someone willing to help. We were booked onto a Monday AM flight on Delta through Atlanta.
We made it home finally. I will never fly US Airways again.