US Airways Express flights will remain cash-only, and US Airways will continue to accept cash and credit cards on international flights.
Nothing new here, folks. Airlines have been doing this for a while. What's surprising is that US Airways is going for a staggered approach, drawing out a process that most of its competitors have long ago finished. American recently completed its full-fleet transition in January, after switching to cashless purchases on domestic flights last June.
US Airways' reason for the switch isn't new either: It's just simpler to go all-plastic, rather than have flight attendants fumbling with cash. In a letter to employees, the carrier said, "As we grow our in-flight sales program, we're seeing an influx of cash that we need to manage. Accepting cash involves manual processes throughout the system that are inefficient and create added costs. It is more efficient to process automated credit card transactions. By doing so, we are also able to reduce costs and streamline processes. It's also more efficient and convenient for flight attendants since they will no longer need to make change on board."
So, once again, make sure you have that credit or debit card handy, or grab a bite to eat before you board.