'Glitch' That Grounded American Airlines Flights Fixed

A "glitch" in the American Airline reservations system that grounded flights nationwide has been fixed, the airline said this afternoon.

"Our systems have been fully restored, however we expect continued flight delays and cancellations throughout the remainder of the day," the airline posted on its Facebook page at 4:30 p.m. ET.

All American and American Eagle flights had been grounded as the carrier worked out a problem with its network system. The airline had cancelled 783 flights as of late this afternoon as a result of the outage.

American Airlines spokeswoman Mary Frances Fagan said the network system was experiencing "intermittent outages." The "glitch" was with the reservation system, but it was unclear whether it was a hardware or a software problem, she said.

The airline was trying to deal with passengers that were stranded, she said. There will be no charge to passengers who wish to change their reservations and the airline said it would provide full refunds for passengers whose travel plans are not flexible.

If customers must travel today and are already at the airport, they can rebook on another airline by visiting an American Airlines agent or by going to the other airline's ticket counter with their electronic ticket number. If customers must travel today and are not yet at the airport, they can rebook through American Airlines reservations or through another carrier and American will honor the fare difference, the airline said.

There will likely be long lines and hold times, as the airline had been previously unable to change current travel plans when the system was down.

The airline was flooded with angry tweets from affected passengers Tuesday. As of 3 p.m. the airline apologized nearly every minute to various tweets since it made public the information about its reservation system failures at 1 p.m. ET.

According to the airline's web site, the carrier flies 3,400 flights on an average day and carries 275,000 passengers.

In February, the airline announced its plans to merge with US Airways. The combined airline will create the nation's largest carrier. Last month, the airlines received merger approval from a bankruptcy court judge. AMR Corp., the parent company of American Airlines and American Eagle, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in November 2011.

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