American Airlines 777 Business Class: Nearly Perfect?!?

American Airlines 777 Business Class: Nearly Perfect?!?

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A few days ago, I flew American Airlines’ Boeing 777-200ER business class on the nine hour flight from London (LHR) to Miami (MIA). This is the same trip where I had flown TAP Air Portugal’s Airbus A330-900neo business class in the other direction across the Atlantic. While I’ll have a full trip report soon, in this post I wanted to share some initial impressions of the experience.

Let me start by saying that I always struggle with the decision of whether to fly a US or European carrier across the Atlantic. The way I view it:

  • US carriers typically have a better hard product, and typically have better bedding
  • European carriers typically have a better soft product, including better food and service

That’s a very broad generalization, and there are of course many exceptions. But usually I end up flying with European carriers, since service isn’t quite as much of a wild card on those carriers, so I at least kind of know what to expect.

For this journey I decided to fly with American (I booked the ticket with 57,500 AAdvantage miles), and this was my first time taking a long haul flight on American in years. Well, I have to say, the flight was a very pleasant surprise, from start to finish.

American has comfortable seats, good entertainment and Wi-Fi, and solid bedding. I knew that going in. What delighted me was that the service was exceptionally good, and on top of that, the food was pretty decent. On a good day, American can be a nearly unbeatable way to cross the Atlantic. Let’s get into it…

American’s 777 business class seats are good(ish)

American’s Boeing 777-200ERs have two kinds of business class seats — some have the Safran Concept D seats, while others have the Collins Aerospace Super Diamond seats, which you’ll find on many airlines, and which most passengers seem to prefer. My flight had the former seats, as I was on one of American’s oldest 777s (delivered back in 1999, though it has of course been refurbished).

The Safran Concept D seats are all fully flat and feature direct aisle access, and alternate between being forward and rear facing.

American 777 business class cabin
American 777 business class seats

Why do people not love these seats? It comes down to two factors — the seats lack storage, and the seats also tend to “rock.”

Essentially, each pair of forward and rear facing seats are connected, so if the person in one seat moves a bit, you’ll feel your seat shaking. This can be really annoying on a long haul flight when you’re trying to sleep. It’s kind of unbelievable that the seats were produced in this way, and you have to wonder if no proper testing was done before these seats were put into service, or what.

American 777 business class seats

Fortunately this issue can be avoided by selecting one of the seats not “paired” with another seat. For example, I assigned myself seat 7A, the rear facing window seat in the first row of the second cabin, which isn’t connected to any other seat.

American 777 business class seats

If you can score one of these seats that isn’t subjected to the shaking issue, I actually quite like this product. That’s because the seat is comfortable in bed mode, as you don’t have any small footwell you have to cram your feet into. Rather the footwell offers an unlimited amount of vertical space, which you don’t find in many modern business class products.

American 777 business class seats

American’s entertainment & Wi-Fi are great

American’s entertainment selection on 777s is phenomenal. There’s no shortage of movies and TV shows, including things that most people actually want to watch. So compared to the limited selection you’ll find on many other airlines, this is quite a treat.

American 777 business class entertainment

Personally I’m more of a map and Wi-Fi kind of guy, so the below is what my entertainment was for most of the flight.

American 777 business class map feature

Speaking of Wi-Fi, American has Panasonic Wi-Fi on its 777s, and a pass for the entire flight cost $35, with no data caps. While that’s a bit pricey, I found the speeds to be quite good. Last year American announced it would improve Wi-Fi speeds on its jets with Panasonic Wi-Fi, and I think that has actually been quite successful.

American 777 business class Wi-Fi pricing

American’s amenities are above average

American offers Casper bedding in business class, with a thick pillow and blanket. While not as good as United Polaris bedding, it’s still much better than on a vast majority of airlines (especially European airlines, which often have pillows that are about as thick as pancakes).

American business class pillow & blanket

American also offers Bang & Olufsen headphones in business class, which are the highest quality headphones that you’ll find on any airline in business class.

American business class headphones

There was also an amenity kit, or in this case, an amenity box. The box contained socks, eyeshades, earplugs, a dental kit, a pen, and a couple of D.S. & DURGA products. I know many people are outraged by American choosing to use a box for its amenity kit at the moment, though I’m not sure I get the big deal?

American business class amenity kit

American’s catering was better than expected

American’s business class catering on this sector was solid, better than I was expecting. After takeoff, drinks were served with mixed nuts. I just had a Diet Coke, as I wasn’t drinking alcohol on this flight.

American business class drinks & nuts

The first course was comprised of a salad with artichokes, as well as a starter of tataki salmon with rhubarb and ginger compote. There was also a bread selection, including a pretzel roll. This was a way above average salad and starter compared to what I’m used to on American.

American business class lunch

For the main course, I opted for the grilled salmon with red curry sauce, rice, diced pumpkin, and sautéed choy sum. Both the fish and the sauce were great (and to those who are annoyed by me always ordering fish, worry not, I have non-fish pictures, but you’ll have to wait for the full review!).

American business class lunch

Lastly, for dessert there was the choice of a cheese plate, cheesecake, or an ice cream sundae. There’s only one right option when flying with American. 😉

American business class lunch

For the pre-arrival meal, I selected the orzo pasta salad, with peas, zucchini, feta cheese, sun dried tomatoes, pepper pearls, and pumpkin seed, served with a side of fresh fruit, plus an an apple and blackcurrant cheesecake.

American business class pre-arrival snack

American’s business class service was flawless

Now let me get to the real highlight of the flight — the service. The only thing consistent about service on US airlines is that it’s inconsistent. As a passenger, it’s quite frustrating when you get on a flight and you can immediately tell the crew isn’t happy to be there.

Along those lines, what a breath of fresh air this flight was. The entire crew was excellent, but in particular, I have to give huge credit to Arthur, the flight attendant working my aisle. His service was just perfect, both in terms of pace and attentiveness. Where do we even begin?

  • He greeted each passenger in his section — “my name is Arthur, and if there’s anything I can do to make you comfortable, please let me know”
  • I appreciated the polite tone with which he communicated — “have you had a chance to decide which entree you’d like today?”
  • He performed the entire meal service so efficiently, all while not making anyone feel rushed; I asked if I could wait about five minutes to have dessert, to which he responded “your schedule is my schedule”
  • During the meal service, he never let a glass get anywhere close to empty, and the question was always phrased as something along the lines of “what else can I get you?” (in other words, “you’re not inconveniencing me by asking for anything”)
  • Throughout the entire nine hour flight, he must have checked on passengers every 10 minutes to see if they wanted anything; when he was on his break, his colleagues did the same thing in his absence

If all of American’s crews on long haul flights were like Arthur and his colleagues on this flight, I’d always fly across the Atlantic with American. I think it’s also important to recognize that they were providing this level of service despite morale among flight attendants basically being at an all time low, as they are working on negotiating a new contract (which they deserve).

Bottom line

When I boarded my American 777 business class flight across the Atlantic, I figured it was an efficient way to get home, and that would be about it. So suffice it to say that I was absolutely delighted by the experience. The most impressive part of the experience was the service, as the entire crew (and in particular, Arthur) were superstars. On top of that, the food was better than I was expecting.

As far as the rest of the experience goes, it was as expected — I quite like American’s business class seats, the entertainment and Wi-Fi are good, the amenities are solid, and I appreciate individual air nozzles.

What’s your take on American’s 777-200ER business class?

Conversations (136)
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  1. RockD Guest

    K st flew the reverse flight FCO to PHI, same good meals, service, entertainment and comfort. Attendant was (Alya?), she was excellent with my five year old. Used 57.5 Alaska miles. Only complaint is that I believe they moved us from the third to fifth row pre check-in because of the child.

  2. D3kingg Guest

    This may be the most highly anticipated full review in the the history of OMAAT.

  3. Nino69 Guest

    Well Ben, it would be nice to have consistent inflight service from the AA to go along with the front end product. Unfortunately, the AA flight attendants are on the precipice of striking and as such you have no idea if you’ll get a welcoming “Arthur” like you did or a militant who scowls at every passenger as they march up and down the aisle just waiting for you ask them for something so they...

    Well Ben, it would be nice to have consistent inflight service from the AA to go along with the front end product. Unfortunately, the AA flight attendants are on the precipice of striking and as such you have no idea if you’ll get a welcoming “Arthur” like you did or a militant who scowls at every passenger as they march up and down the aisle just waiting for you ask them for something so they can rip your face off. I’m leaving AA because of this inflight service level even as I live in a hub city and will be adding an extra leg just to avoid this subpar service.

  4. E39 New Member

    I only come here to read Tim Dunn vs everyone else.

    1. Tim Dunn Diamond

      I keep coming back because people are obsessed with me and want to incessantly argue.

      Instead of dealing w/ basic facts and accepting them, a handful of people assail me, distort and manipulate reality to avoid admitting I am right, and argue incessantly against what is obvious.

      I said in this post:
      1. AA is predominantly a domestic airline - which is true of ALL US airlines - and AA is the least international...

      I keep coming back because people are obsessed with me and want to incessantly argue.

      Instead of dealing w/ basic facts and accepting them, a handful of people assail me, distort and manipulate reality to avoid admitting I am right, and argue incessantly against what is obvious.

      I said in this post:
      1. AA is predominantly a domestic airline - which is true of ALL US airlines - and AA is the least international of the big 3 which is also true
      2. AA operates a higher percentage of its network on regional jets.
      3. One of AA's competitors - DL - has a plan that should be complete within a year to have free high speed Wifi on all aircraft that wear DL's colors - mainline and RJs. DL already has free wifi on more aircraft than any airline in the world and that is only going to grow.
      AA does not have a plan to put Wifi on all aircraft that will wear its colors this decade and AA has no plan for it to be free.

      Instead of accepting basic facts, some people incessantly argue.

      Post the facts, quit arguing and recognize someone else might say something that is both true and favors someone besides your favorite airline.

    2. Eskimo Guest

      Fluff checking Tim

      "I said in this post:
      1. AA is predominantly a domestic airline - which is true of ALL US airlines"

      Facts, based on earlier replies.
      1. Tim said
      "AA is predominantly a domestic airline"
      2. Max said
      "Delta is also a predominantly domestic airline too, Timmy ;) "
      3. Tim replied
      "no, American is the LEAST international of the big 3."

      Max: Delta is also...

      Fluff checking Tim

      "I said in this post:
      1. AA is predominantly a domestic airline - which is true of ALL US airlines"

      Facts, based on earlier replies.
      1. Tim said
      "AA is predominantly a domestic airline"
      2. Max said
      "Delta is also a predominantly domestic airline too, Timmy ;) "
      3. Tim replied
      "no, American is the LEAST international of the big 3."

      Max: Delta is also a predominantly domestic airline too.
      Tim: no.

      Tim said no, or other words Tim is saying: Delta is not a predominantly domestic airline.
      But Tim also said.
      "predominantly a domestic airline - which is true of ALL US airlines"

      So is DL not or DL is.
      Or yesterday Tim and today Tim are both correct and DL suddenly became predominantly domestic overnight.

      Fluff check BUSTED!!!
      Take that for a fact.

      I keep coming back because some people are obsessed with Delta and want to incessantly argue.

  5. Anthony Guest

    Ben, I can't believe you are drinking diet Coke. You seem to be a pretty smart, aware and health conscious type of guy. Take a look and consider changing for your health.

  6. KC Guest

    It’s awful. I choose to fly LH to MUC and on to LHR when I fly CLT-LHR just to avoid the rockin coffin.

  7. Sedward Guest

    Negotiating a contract is never an excuse to treat the customers poorly. On the contrary, I've read that AA has provided its employees with very competitive contracts. The flight attendants (FA's) are the only ones remaining, I believe. I love reading stories like that about Arthur. I wish all FA's were like Arthur. If they were, and if pilots and airport agents were, too, AA would be making so much money now they could afford...

    Negotiating a contract is never an excuse to treat the customers poorly. On the contrary, I've read that AA has provided its employees with very competitive contracts. The flight attendants (FA's) are the only ones remaining, I believe. I love reading stories like that about Arthur. I wish all FA's were like Arthur. If they were, and if pilots and airport agents were, too, AA would be making so much money now they could afford to pay their employees more. It's ironic that often union members shoot themselves in the feet by giving poor customer service while expecting to be paid a premium for doing so. Completely illogical. And btw, I belong to a union, too. I just prefer to think logically.

    1. Tim Dunn Diamond

      American, Southwest and United all have open flight attendant contracts. AA said it would match Delta's flight attendant pay and compensation package including board pay which Delta implemented within the US industry.
      No union is going to accept a non-union pay proposal which is why there is a massive standoff in the US airline industry between FAs and mgmt. If a union accepts that mgmt at a non-union airline sets the standard for compensation,...

      American, Southwest and United all have open flight attendant contracts. AA said it would match Delta's flight attendant pay and compensation package including board pay which Delta implemented within the US industry.
      No union is going to accept a non-union pay proposal which is why there is a massive standoff in the US airline industry between FAs and mgmt. If a union accepts that mgmt at a non-union airline sets the standard for compensation, then there is no value in a union.

  8. Steven E Guest

    On most airlines ( Not American) you would never see an opened can of anything in a premium cabin it’s just not done

    1. LO Guest

      We never used to give out cans in BC, but it is more efficient now since we have fewer FA'S staffing the flights. During Covid they cut back and now refuse to put the FA'S back on.

  9. iamhere Guest

    I think you need to find some new words to describe your experiences on different airlines and aircrafts. It is like the status of a five star hotel. Some are really excellent and high class. Others are not. Then there is variations in between. This is the same kind of experience. The service you received was good and while not usual for an American or European carrier, it is as it should be. Probably would...

    I think you need to find some new words to describe your experiences on different airlines and aircrafts. It is like the status of a five star hotel. Some are really excellent and high class. Others are not. Then there is variations in between. This is the same kind of experience. The service you received was good and while not usual for an American or European carrier, it is as it should be. Probably would give it a B or C to mean average or above average. The airlines that have remarkable products for both hard or soft I would give an A (those that nothing could compare to).

  10. Rich Guest

    I agree with everything except the WiFi on the many fights I’ve taken on AA in Biz has been horrible.

    1. Tim Dunn Diamond

      let's remember that one US global carrier will have Wifi on its entire fleet worldwide within a year. And it won't be American.

    2. Ken Guest

      AA has had wifi on their entire fleet for quite awhile.

    3. Tim Dunn Diamond

      AA won't do free as one of their competitors will do

    4. A220HubandSpoke Member

      Tim Dunn called out for his lies as always

    5. Tim Dunn Diamond

      there are no lies in accurately noting that DL is moving toward a global system of free high-speed WiFI while AA will charge to use it.

    6. Tim Dunn Diamond

      further, feel free to post a link unless I missed it but I don't think that AA has committed to providing high speed Wifi on its entire regional aircraft fleet. Given that AA contracts with more regional aircraft than any other airline in the world and says it won't get rid of 50 seaters until the end of the decade even as AA flies a larger percentage of its schedule on regional jets than any...

      further, feel free to post a link unless I missed it but I don't think that AA has committed to providing high speed Wifi on its entire regional aircraft fleet. Given that AA contracts with more regional aircraft than any other airline in the world and says it won't get rid of 50 seaters until the end of the decade even as AA flies a larger percentage of its schedule on regional jets than any of the big 4 plus AS, it matters a whole lot where AA will have Wifi and how much it will cost - vs a true network wide, fee offer from DL

    7. MaxPower Diamond

      I think what you meant to say is “delta is the only US3 carrier flying around mainline planes today without WiFi. And has been trailing aa on high speed WiFi for years on narrowbodies and widebodies”

      Imagine getting on a delta 12 hour lax-akl flight and having no WiFi or no all aisle access.. but… it was a purposeful decision by delta to lower their brand standard.

      What kind of premium carrier has been flying...

      I think what you meant to say is “delta is the only US3 carrier flying around mainline planes today without WiFi. And has been trailing aa on high speed WiFi for years on narrowbodies and widebodies”

      Imagine getting on a delta 12 hour lax-akl flight and having no WiFi or no all aisle access.. but… it was a purposeful decision by delta to lower their brand standard.

      What kind of premium carrier has been flying Gogo ground based WiFi on their own narrowbody fleet for… more than a decade? The 717 WiFi upgrade is FINALLY starting in q2 of this year after putting that off for how long, tim?

      WiFi is probably not your go to here, Timmy. Delta buys used planes and flies them with no WiFi plans but hey… that may be better than than their ill thought out 717 Gogo strategy
      And cool it with your supply chain silliness. If delta cared about a product to customers, Wi-Fi or otherwise; there are many things they could’ve done or other decisions for Wi-Fi that would’ve sped up all their decisions in this regard.

    8. Tim Dunn Diamond

      Yes, Max, I said exactly what I wanted to say and am not afraid of providing the appropriate comparisons because I know full well that you and others will try to find anecdotal exceptions because you cannot and will not deal with the real issues on the table - you can't.

      Delta has plans to be free high speed Wifi on its entire mainline and regional fleets and to offer it worldwide for free. No...

      Yes, Max, I said exactly what I wanted to say and am not afraid of providing the appropriate comparisons because I know full well that you and others will try to find anecdotal exceptions because you cannot and will not deal with the real issues on the table - you can't.

      Delta has plans to be free high speed Wifi on its entire mainline and regional fleets and to offer it worldwide for free. No other US airline proposes to do the same thing and Delta will offer the largest free global Wifi network in the world.

      AA and UA will have hundreds of regional jets that will not ever have high speed Wifi, let alone free.

      Delta IS equipping the 717s with free high speed Wifi. It is part of the plan.

      Delta bought NINE - count them - NINE - used A350-900s which it has used as high capacity aircraft to Europe, S. America and TLV - and added ONE route that is served exclusively by that type - LAX-AKL.

      the reason why DL started LAX-AKL is because it won the majority of Hollywood studio contracts as part of its plan - which it achieved - to become the largest airline at LAX.

      LAX-AKL goes to an original DL A350-900 in mere weeks. The route will operate seasonally 3X/week and return on a daily basis.
      And the ex-Latam A350s will get Delta standard configurations starting this fall and will add to the 36 new A350s Delta has on order giving Delta tremendous transpacific growth capacity over the next 5 years.

      Go ahead and find exceptions, Max. Because your exceptions don't even hold water.

      Delta will offer the largest Wifi network across its entire mainline and regional jet fleet and it will be free. No other US airline will come close

    9. MaxPower Diamond

      “ AA and UA will have hundreds of regional jets that will not ever have high speed Wifi”

      The rest of your gibberish is just a lame attempt to say something of no value
      But if you’re going to make this kind of statement, you should probably stay up to date with competitor’s news releases
      As has been quite open that their dual class regional fleet will get high speed WiFi
      Try not to betray your ignorance on this topic more than you already do.

    10. Tim Dunn Diamond

      You do realize that AA and UA both intend to operate hundreds of single class RJs.

      And neither AA or UA has committed to free global Wifi on every aircraft painted in its colors.

      Keep digging, Max.

      You argue about gnats and ignore elephants

    11. MaxPower Diamond

      lol. Oh tim
      Delta can’t even get WiFi on their own birds yet you talk about 50 seaters both aa and ua are getting rid of

      Your view of reality is hysterical

      Just admit when you’re wrong and move on
      You’ve literally been proven wrong on everything dogmatic thing you’d said thus far
      Delta doesn’t even have any WiFi on some of their mainline fleet
      Much less high speed WiFi on their regional minus a promise to do it at some point

    12. Tim Dunn Diamond

      Delta has a plan to put Wifi on its entire fleet of RJs and mainline aircraft and offer it for free. That process is supposed to be complete by this time next year.

      Delta offers free wifi on a larger global fleet than any other airline.

      THAT is a fact.

      AA carries more passengers on its large widebody fleet than DL has on its 717s. Fact. DL will get free high speed Wifi on...

      Delta has a plan to put Wifi on its entire fleet of RJs and mainline aircraft and offer it for free. That process is supposed to be complete by this time next year.

      Delta offers free wifi on a larger global fleet than any other airline.

      THAT is a fact.

      AA carries more passengers on its large widebody fleet than DL has on its 717s. Fact. DL will get free high speed Wifi on its 717s before AA gets high speed wifi -free or not - on its entire fleet of RJs. Fact.

      walk away, Max,

      You argue and nitpick because you can't accept the big picture.

    13. MaxPower Diamond

      Facts are tricky things, tim
      Learn to embrace facts and data rather than every delta news release and your life and logic will be a lot easier

      You certainly don’t see me defending everything aa or united do…. Nor will you ever. They’re companies, not god
      Delta makes mistakes, they’re a company.

      Fact: delta is the only large carrier in the US without WiFi on their own metal planes. And it’s not...

      Facts are tricky things, tim
      Learn to embrace facts and data rather than every delta news release and your life and logic will be a lot easier

      You certainly don’t see me defending everything aa or united do…. Nor will you ever. They’re companies, not god
      Delta makes mistakes, they’re a company.

      Fact: delta is the only large carrier in the US without WiFi on their own metal planes. And it’s not an outage; it’s a purposeful strategic decision delta made to NOT have WiFi on narrowbodies and widebodies for a couple years, to say nothing of the ridiculous WiFi strategy with the 717s, or complete lack thereof rather

    14. MaxPower Diamond

      https://news.aa.com/news/news-details/2023/American-plans-expansion-of-high-speed-Wi-Fi-to-nearly-500-regional-aircraft/default.aspx
      Per regionals…

      “ Earlier this year, American became the first airline to offer streaming capability on 100% of its mainline fleet”

      It’s almost like you don’t know what you’re talking about, tim ;)
      Delta won’t be able to say this for quite some time

    15. Julia Guest

      Corporate shills gotta keep on shilling, I guess.

  11. ash Guest

    I just flew American transcon round trip from Seattle to Charlotte and back and the service was flawless and the chicken enchilada for dinner on the return beat restaurant quality. Was frankly blown away.

    1. yoloswag420 Guest

      Did something change w/ AA? I flew them on this exact route and was served a half-frozen packaged sandwich, and the FA vehemently denied it was frozen despite there being actual ice crystals.

  12. MaxPower Diamond

    Sort of amusing how controversial a positive review of aa business turned out to be.

    Definitely ruined some fanboy’s day

    1. Tim Dunn Diamond

      no, you just get bent out of shape if anyone thinks, let alone says, anything negative about AA.

      It is an airline, not your mother.

    2. MaxPower Diamond

      :)
      How funny coming from you. People say bad things about aa, UA, and delta all the time. You’re the only one with the maturity of a five year old when something poor is said about delta.
      Get a life, Timmy
      You spent your entire Sunday in the comments section of a business class review about aa because you were so triggered.

    3. Tim Dunn Diamond

      I post facts which you don't like to hear - including that AA flies more of their domestic system on regional aircraft than any other US airline and that AA is the least international airline.
      The only five years are the ones that can't handle hearing that.

      AA is the most domestic and most regional airline and the least international airline of the big 3

    4. MaxPower Diamond

      lol
      Get a life, loser.
      You can’t even put a sentence together with your current seething.
      Your statement earlier in the thread was

      “ And, AA is predominantly a domestic airline… but it is their domestic network that defines their image.”

      Yep. AA is predominantly domestic but so is delta, by far. Though sure, AA is bigger than delta domestically in absolute terms and in percent terms though…like I said before,...

      lol
      Get a life, loser.
      You can’t even put a sentence together with your current seething.
      Your statement earlier in the thread was

      “ And, AA is predominantly a domestic airline… but it is their domestic network that defines their image.”

      Yep. AA is predominantly domestic but so is delta, by far. Though sure, AA is bigger than delta domestically in absolute terms and in percent terms though…like I said before, delta is required to fly more of their own metal internationally due to their pilot contract, AA is not. You should be asking yourself why so many Americans prefer to fly aa over delta domestically that delta can’t match AA’s size there… ;)

      Love how your new one thought on most posts is that the aa regional network somehow makes aa worse. Because… well, you basically have one thought at a time and say it over and over across the internet.

      The fact is delta would love to have AA’s regional scope, but just like their international flying, their pilot contract also prevents delta from flying regionals to the extent Aa does. But AA’s benefit on the regional side is on the 76 seaters and you’ll notice delta is basically maxed out per their contract which is very telling about what delta would like to fly.. if you actually knew what you were talking about, tim

      Try to get out of your basement today, Timmy.

    5. Tim Dunn Diamond

      you nitpick because you can't accept reality.

      DL's FAs are by far the most consistent in delivering the product that DL wants.

      AA FAs such as what Ben found are the exception.

      AA is the MOST domestic/least international airline of the big 3. That is a fact.

    6. Julia Guest

      "no, you just get bent out of shape if anyone thinks, let alone says, anything negative about AA."

      Sounds like someone else on here with another US airline...

    7. Tim Dunn Diamond

      debate the fact and not the person if you want to prove you are right and I am wrong, Julia.
      and tell others the same thing.

  13. Kelley Guest

    I recently flew on BA from SEA to LHR on a(n older) 777. In first on the way outbound and business on the return. The first class seat was AWFUL. No storage, hard, uncomfortable, and the bedding wasn't great either. The service was fantastic, but the food was basically convention chicken (you know, the basic chicken that always seems to be served at large meetings). The business class seat on the return was better, more...

    I recently flew on BA from SEA to LHR on a(n older) 777. In first on the way outbound and business on the return. The first class seat was AWFUL. No storage, hard, uncomfortable, and the bedding wasn't great either. The service was fantastic, but the food was basically convention chicken (you know, the basic chicken that always seems to be served at large meetings). The business class seat on the return was better, more comfortable, and had more storage. Service was again great, but I can't speak to the food because the salad served for our first course snuck in something that I am allergic to (I should have read the menu more carefully, the clue was there....) and I ended up achieving a lifetime first experience of vomiting in the business class loo. Yay. Bless the flight attendants, afterward they found some plain crackers and kept the ginger ale coming. (Side note - if you have to yark on a plane, I recommend doubling up the bags and doing it in there - even in the loo. It's neater and less splashy, plus you don't have to get on your knees. How's that for more than you ever wanted to know?).

  14. Tony M Guest

    Arthur is an exception.

  15. DesertGhost Guest

    How dare you write that American's service is good? The conventional wisdom among airline bloggers is that it sucks and is irredeemable. LOL

  16. Points and Miles Doc Guest

    I completely agree with your review Ben, and the fact that inconsistency is the biggest expectation. I have been on Flagship business routes with absolutely the nicest, best flight attendants possible, and the same routes with flight attendants who seem to have no interest in speaking with a human the entire flight.

    I always make sure to reach out to customer service about the good ones, because they stand out so much! I want...

    I completely agree with your review Ben, and the fact that inconsistency is the biggest expectation. I have been on Flagship business routes with absolutely the nicest, best flight attendants possible, and the same routes with flight attendants who seem to have no interest in speaking with a human the entire flight.

    I always make sure to reach out to customer service about the good ones, because they stand out so much! I want them to get the kudos they deserve and hopefully set an example for others.

    1. Kelley Guest

      If you're an American frequent flyer they send you little "coupons" that you can fill out and hand to any employee who provides good service. They turn those in to their personnel manager and get kudos for them. FYI

    2. Ken Guest

      Those coupons don’t get noticed. We can redeem them for $0.50 to bank up and use online. An email, however, goes in our file and counts greatly and our manager then gives us more points than the coupon does.

  17. Buenos Trips Guest

    As expected... Two months ago you trashed American Airlines left and right ... Now they are wonderful. Makes you wonder.

    1. Julia Guest

      Lucky can be a bit mercurial with his opinions of airlines. One good trip can make him be a fan of an airline, while one bad trip can make him reassess his being a fan of one, despite his history of previous flights with an airline.

    2. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Julia -- I don't think that's fair. I am sharing my impression of a specific flight, not of the airline overall (after all, that's all I can judge on a particular flight). It doesn't change my bigger picture impression of anything, other than to note that airlines are consistently inconsistent.

    3. Anthony Guest

      Ben you should respond to this. Your readers are intelligent. Not saying anything is wrong, but your comments on this would be worthwhile. Thanks.

    4. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Anthony -- I'm curious what you're suggesting by saying that readers are intelligent, and therefore I should respond to that? Are you saying that there's something I'm hiding here about this flight, and that Buenos Trips figured it out, or what?

      The truth is that the blog gets hundreds of comments per day. Virtually every time I write a review of anything, someone either suggests I got special treatment or had some undisclosed financial...

      @ Anthony -- I'm curious what you're suggesting by saying that readers are intelligent, and therefore I should respond to that? Are you saying that there's something I'm hiding here about this flight, and that Buenos Trips figured it out, or what?

      The truth is that the blog gets hundreds of comments per day. Virtually every time I write a review of anything, someone either suggests I got special treatment or had some undisclosed financial interest when I have something positive to say, while they say I'm a hater and have axe to grind when I have a negative experience.

      Do you really think it's important for me to respond to each person who makes such a baseless observation, or what are you recommending?

    5. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Buenos Trips -- Could you please expand on what you're suggesting? I'm not saying the airline is wonderful, I'm simply saying I had a good experience thanks to one great crew, and noted that the airline is consistently inconsistent.

  18. niji248 Guest

    I have to agree that this has been my experience with AA long haul in the past two years. I only started flying AA in 2021 in Business for the first time, and I think by now I've accumulated maybe 70-80 trips in their business class flights (long haul and transcons), and my experience has been mostly good to some really excellent, some occasional unmemorable, and a few not so greats. I really don't understand...

    I have to agree that this has been my experience with AA long haul in the past two years. I only started flying AA in 2021 in Business for the first time, and I think by now I've accumulated maybe 70-80 trips in their business class flights (long haul and transcons), and my experience has been mostly good to some really excellent, some occasional unmemorable, and a few not so greats. I really don't understand what all the AA bashing is about, how many of those people b*tching about AA actually have flown on them.

  19. W Gold

    The last time I flew AA's Business Class was on the 772 with this Safran seat from CDG to MIA in January 2020. I had a similar experience to you, and the flight was great! I believe I had the same Salmon entree as you in July 2019 from DFW to NRT. AA also served the same breadsticks and a similar (delicious) salad as the pre-arrival meal on my CDG-MIA flight. But I was quite...

    The last time I flew AA's Business Class was on the 772 with this Safran seat from CDG to MIA in January 2020. I had a similar experience to you, and the flight was great! I believe I had the same Salmon entree as you in July 2019 from DFW to NRT. AA also served the same breadsticks and a similar (delicious) salad as the pre-arrival meal on my CDG-MIA flight. But I was quite impressed with AA, and the crew on my flight was amazing!

    Also, if I remember correctly, the best seat on this plane configuration for me is the last row of Business Class on the right side. That seat isn't connected to another seat, and it's essentially a reverse herringbone seat facing the window. But the window seat one row before that has an incredible amount of counter space!

  20. Chris Guest

    I flew AA in biz to and from Buenos Aires over New Years. Both crews on the outbound and return were fantastic. Would definitely pick AA in biz over United and Delta as I despise 767s.

  21. hbilbao Guest

    I had a nice flight on AA flagship business 1 year ago or so... Very nice FA, she called passengers "honey" in a genuinely charming way. But it's hard to expect people to be happy and cheery with their jobs if they're treated poorly by their employer.

  22. Dolphin Guest

    How did you manage to get LHR-MIA for 57.5k points? Did you book last minute? I never see "saver" level awards on AA anymore, especially on that route...

    1. KennyT New Member

      I don't know how Ben did it, but I got the same 57,500 mile fare by using point.me, making sure that the booking used AA rather than BA for the BOS-LHR leg of a BOS-CPH trip in business.

      I booked 17 days before departure.

  23. Mick Guest

    I really like AA Biz too. Almost feel like an outsider when defending them vs the European carriers lol.

    The footwell having vertical space is key for me. I’m sick of feeling claustrophobic in some of the seats available these days. It’s just far too restrictive no matter how nice they look and how private they are.

    One thing that irks me about American is how early they turn on the lights in...

    I really like AA Biz too. Almost feel like an outsider when defending them vs the European carriers lol.

    The footwell having vertical space is key for me. I’m sick of feeling claustrophobic in some of the seats available these days. It’s just far too restrictive no matter how nice they look and how private they are.

    One thing that irks me about American is how early they turn on the lights in the morning. Landing at lhr at 830am doesn’t require blinding light at 6am for breakfast ugh.

  24. RobertW Guest

    I have flown this product many times. I like the seat and fly out of MIA as well.

  25. KyleEP Guest

    Last December I flew MIA-CDG on AA in Flagship Business. My experience very much resembled yours Ben and was very impressed by the level of service, food, etc (and I fly AA pretty often so I've seen the range too). We were even given a choice of a very lovely (real) champagne for our PDB. This was attributed to the wine program being reshuffled (glad they stocked something decent during this change!). I generally find...

    Last December I flew MIA-CDG on AA in Flagship Business. My experience very much resembled yours Ben and was very impressed by the level of service, food, etc (and I fly AA pretty often so I've seen the range too). We were even given a choice of a very lovely (real) champagne for our PDB. This was attributed to the wine program being reshuffled (glad they stocked something decent during this change!). I generally find AA's international to be pretty good. I've flown other international carriers too but AA seems to do the job pretty well even with a few misses here and there. I can't wait to try their new Flagship Business suite debuting later this fall on the DFW-BNE route!

  26. NK3 Gold

    Last year we flew AA from LAX-SYD in the first row of the business mini cabin on the 777-300ER. It was one of the best business class flights I have ever had. Every crew member I interacted with was excellent. Engaging, proactive, etc. Given the length of the flight, we also got pajamas and a Casper mattress pad. We liked the pad so much we ordered one for home. The food was not great, but...

    Last year we flew AA from LAX-SYD in the first row of the business mini cabin on the 777-300ER. It was one of the best business class flights I have ever had. Every crew member I interacted with was excellent. Engaging, proactive, etc. Given the length of the flight, we also got pajamas and a Casper mattress pad. We liked the pad so much we ordered one for home. The food was not great, but given the late departure I was not that hungry. On the way back we flew AA in First, and service was disappointing.

    Personally, I do think the amenity box is a big deal. I am a fan of Shinola, so the loss of the kit is a negative. I understand there is waste associated with these kits, but I think there are better ways to do this. On my Air France flight earlier this week, they walked around with a tray and asked us if we wanted a kit (versus just having it at the seat). Several people declined. They could also put some items in the bathroom, so you only take them if you need them.

    1. BenjaminGuttery Diamond

      I WHOLEHEARTEDLY agree with you on the Kits. If AA FA's (and the company) weren't so lazy. They would do what you described instead of leaving them on a barely wiped down seat. It's ridiculous that anyone is going along with this charade of "eco friendly" nonsense. Give me the bag that I have expected for 40 years after being loyal and SPENDING THOUSANDS FOR AN OLD SEAT. Period. Give members a CHOICE if they...

      I WHOLEHEARTEDLY agree with you on the Kits. If AA FA's (and the company) weren't so lazy. They would do what you described instead of leaving them on a barely wiped down seat. It's ridiculous that anyone is going along with this charade of "eco friendly" nonsense. Give me the bag that I have expected for 40 years after being loyal and SPENDING THOUSANDS FOR AN OLD SEAT. Period. Give members a CHOICE if they want it or not. I guarantee over 85% will take the nice branded, reusable, bag. Let the greedy corporation save 15% instead of pissing off loyal flyers and spenders. They brought bag luggage tags and cards for PP & EP, they need to bring back the nice kits.

    2. Tim Dunn Diamond

      just shut up, will you.

      If you really need nice amenities, bring them with you

    3. brandote New Member

      What an unhinged comment. The kits are mostly garbage. As Tim pointed out, you can bring your own amenities (as I do), or shut up. No one is basing their purchasing decisions on the amenity kits.

      I’ve kept a few amenity kits from my travels over the years and reused them for cords, adapters, whatever (I even still use the old AA Cole Haan bags to put shoes in), but I leave them behind and unopened 90% of the time.

    4. yoloswag420 Guest

      @Tim this was pretty out of pocket for you ngl. I feel like you stay pretty respectful even when getting dogpiled in all the comments. Their opinion is valid, even if you don't agree with them.

      Amenity kits are not experience defining, but it's like the icing on the cake. High quality amenities are part of the package and missing components makes a difference too. JetBlue just axed dental products on their transcons, which sucks...

      @Tim this was pretty out of pocket for you ngl. I feel like you stay pretty respectful even when getting dogpiled in all the comments. Their opinion is valid, even if you don't agree with them.

      Amenity kits are not experience defining, but it's like the icing on the cake. High quality amenities are part of the package and missing components makes a difference too. JetBlue just axed dental products on their transcons, which sucks since people need to now bring their own non-disposable dental kits in their carry-ons.

    5. Tim Dunn Diamond

      he stuck his nose into a comment intended for someone else and made a nasty remark and got it back.

      thankyou for recognizing that is not the way I operate.

  27. BenjaminGuttery Diamond

    Hey Ben, I'm one of those ones that's "outraged" by AA giving us cheap amenity kits. If AA wants to give heavy travelers/eco freaks the option of turning down a REAL amenity kit in favor of this "Panera Snack box": the cool. But for the price the flights seem going for these days, and the FA T that 80% PLUS of travelers are flying 1-3 times a year and look forward to something to remember...

    Hey Ben, I'm one of those ones that's "outraged" by AA giving us cheap amenity kits. If AA wants to give heavy travelers/eco freaks the option of turning down a REAL amenity kit in favor of this "Panera Snack box": the cool. But for the price the flights seem going for these days, and the FA T that 80% PLUS of travelers are flying 1-3 times a year and look forward to something to remember the flights by: this is messed up. Period. Facts. End of story. AA needs to step it up and stop this ridiculous "test". It's insulting and cheap amd a bad business move not only on PR/Image, but in the long run some travelers will choose to fly elsewhere, even on BA/IB where you still get a little trinket for your $10,000 seat.

  28. yoloswag420 Guest

    "US carriers typically have a better hard product, and typically have better bedding", but then goes on to discuss how dated the AA seats are.

    Honestly, in what world do US carriers have better hard product? VS A330neos/A350s + BA Club Suites are superior to all US carriers. AF's new business seats, Condor's Prime Seats, etc. so on so forth. Delta has half a fleet of decrepit, aging seats on their widebodies. Until AA gets...

    "US carriers typically have a better hard product, and typically have better bedding", but then goes on to discuss how dated the AA seats are.

    Honestly, in what world do US carriers have better hard product? VS A330neos/A350s + BA Club Suites are superior to all US carriers. AF's new business seats, Condor's Prime Seats, etc. so on so forth. Delta has half a fleet of decrepit, aging seats on their widebodies. Until AA gets their new 787s in, they're lagging behind. United has a consistent, but middle of the pack product.

    1. jedipenguin Guest

      Even your typical African carrier(Kenya Airways, Ethiopian) has a better hard product. US airlines could learn a lot from airlines from emerging economies.

    2. yoloswag420 Guest

      It's really sad bc JetBlue is the only innovative airline. Even on narrowbodies, they have one of the better seats for TATL. But they're really struggling operationally and financially.

  29. 305 Guest

    The MIA-LHR crews are consistently some of the best in the fleet. Shoutout to the "London Mafia" ladies, probably the nicest/friendliest FAs at AA

  30. KennyT New Member

    I flew AA Business last week BOS-LHR and was also pleasantly surprised. Nice hard product, nice amenities, good food, good service. My FA chided me when I ordered only vanillas ice cream rather than a sundae, "That's against the law."

    It was my first time sitting backward on a plane, but that only proved weird to me during takeoff.

  31. shoeguy Guest

    The Collins seat far exceeds the Safran in terms of aesthetics and comfort, but AA's Flagship Business product is quite good and when the crew are focused, it can be really good. The seats are comfortable. The bedding and amenity kits are very good. Quality and quantity of food on AA is hands down superior to anything you'll get on United. AA doesn't have all the gimmicks that Delta throws in to create the illusion...

    The Collins seat far exceeds the Safran in terms of aesthetics and comfort, but AA's Flagship Business product is quite good and when the crew are focused, it can be really good. The seats are comfortable. The bedding and amenity kits are very good. Quality and quantity of food on AA is hands down superior to anything you'll get on United. AA doesn't have all the gimmicks that Delta throws in to create the illusion of a premium product (sliding doors, on some planes, Alessi salt and pepper shakers, etc) but American delivers a solid product and hopefully, it will only continue to do better as the new premium cabins begin to roll out.

    1. BenjaminGuttery Diamond

      I agree, BUT they have to drop this stupid motel box lunch amenity kit nonsense.

  32. Alpha Golf Guest

    Who are you? And what did you do to Ben?

  33. Jettoajet Guest

    Not sure what’s happened with AA. Flew them 5 flights in the same past 2 weeks, 2 in economy, 3 in Business. The service has been stellar, free upgrades with no status, access to Chelsea Lounge on a business ticket etc. seems like something is going on over at AA

  34. Josh Guest

    Turn off the auto-playing sound on your ads. It’s 2024. You shouldn’t have a T-Mobile ad blaring at you automatically when the page loads and every minute after that. I assume this is a technical glitch, but one you haven’t fixed in about a month. Please fix it!

    1. Matt Guest

      I agree. It makes reading this blog during boring meetings impossible.

    2. Mike C Diamond

      I would suspect that the issue is with your ISP or an ad provider Ben has selected, and that this website has 'insert ad here' or something like that, so he has no input into the ads that appear. I see Australian ads (and no audio).

    3. Frank Guest

      Sorry Ben but no. That amenity kit is horrible. Wifi is $29. No mattress cover. The screen is poor resolution and doesn tilt when laying down and cant be watched if someone opens the window. Bathrooms are filthy. Food is usually bad. The plugs dont work. They collect headphones 1 hour out. They give you lipton tea with the tea bag inside.And wine is a $10 bottle. Sure everything else is greAAt.

  35. LarryInNYC Diamond

    On my AA flights over the past year, on-board service has generally been either unmemorable (that is, fine), or noticeably good. Same from the Xitter team (which is my goto if I need something) and the phone agents when I've used them. Gate agents, not so much.

  36. Shariq Guest

    I have flown over 10 AA segments to Europe over the past 8 months. Service has been consistently high level on all the flights.

    So much better than my last LH First where the crew felt compelled to ignore the only non white person sitting in First Class.

  37. Morgan Diamond

    I hate to sound negative but considering how amazing Arthur was and the exceptional level of service (by the sounds of it, it could rival SQ) and how in the past you have (rightfully) criticised American and you have a large and loyal following.

    I do wonder whether your name has been flagged in their system and an exec realised and specifically assigned a superb crew.

    It just amazes me how bad service is at...

    I hate to sound negative but considering how amazing Arthur was and the exceptional level of service (by the sounds of it, it could rival SQ) and how in the past you have (rightfully) criticised American and you have a large and loyal following.

    I do wonder whether your name has been flagged in their system and an exec realised and specifically assigned a superb crew.

    It just amazes me how bad service is at American (not to mention the current negotiations with AA FAs going on and morale being low as you pointed out) and you just had a flight that sounds like first class level service. Because if this was the case and a good crew was assigned then talk about good publicity...

    1. OCTinPHL Diamond

      Crews are not assigned in that way. Just doesn’t happen. Even for a blogger.

      I’ve had excellent service on my 2 AA intl flights this year.

    2. DC Guest

      Not how crews are assigned, and Ben has received crummy service on AA countless times. I have to say, I’ve noticed a significant improvement in their service over the past year. Flew LAX-SYD-LAX in Business a few weeks ago, the service and product were phenomenal.

  38. Randy Diamond

    You flew a daytime flight. FA's are generally a little more attentive for day flights. I like AA Business, the hard product is great. Just the service on the long flights like SYD, AKL, etc. - you get old FA's who do the minimum. On LHR to MIA flight you get some Spanish speaking FA's, who are the most professional FA and provide the best service (my experience). Perhaps Arthur was in that category.

  39. chicagomike Guest

    I fly biz on occasion for work or on points. I have done it enough now that people ask me what my favorites were. When I say usual suspects like Qatar, ANA, or EVA people nod their heads because they have heard that before. But when I say the AA flight I took in biz from SYD to LAX is in my top 5 they always look shocked. Can't blame them given what they may...

    I fly biz on occasion for work or on points. I have done it enough now that people ask me what my favorites were. When I say usual suspects like Qatar, ANA, or EVA people nod their heads because they have heard that before. But when I say the AA flight I took in biz from SYD to LAX is in my top 5 they always look shocked. Can't blame them given what they may have experienced/heard but I tell them it really was that good. That said the biz flight I took out of PHL to MAD not top 10. Difference? The crew. IMO great seat on both flights but soft product lacked on one.

  40. Lee Guest

    I regularly fly AA long haul (as well as other airlines). To me, the airline's shortcomings have always been the service and the catering. To be fair, the shortcoming in service is not the fault of the flight attendants. AA management has downsized cabin crews and they are under-staffed. The key shortcoming in catering is the beef. For $1 more, AA could offer a quality serving of beef. Raise the ticket price $10 but please give me an enjoyable meal.

  41. Bob Guest

    We fly CLT-MUC annually AA in Business and have always been pleased with the product and the service. Last year we were forced to take a detour on BA (via LHR) and the difference was breathtaking - and not in a good way.

  42. Antwerp Guest

    Coursing of a meal. What a novel concept. You would think UA would see this and say, "Oh, yeah, we forgot to go back to that after Covid with our Polaris product." It's the most frustrating aspect of Polaris catering and glad to see AA doing it again. Having every course crammed onto a tray, especially on a longer daytime flight from Europe, is absurd. The main gets cold unless you rush through the salad...

    Coursing of a meal. What a novel concept. You would think UA would see this and say, "Oh, yeah, we forgot to go back to that after Covid with our Polaris product." It's the most frustrating aspect of Polaris catering and glad to see AA doing it again. Having every course crammed onto a tray, especially on a longer daytime flight from Europe, is absurd. The main gets cold unless you rush through the salad and starter and everything is packed together making it difficult to manage as a meal. Yes, I know, first world problems. But still, I hope UA realizes that everyone else has gone back to it.

    1. Santos Guest

      Flew Polaris IAD-LHR in Dec and the meal was coursed properly. Crew was fantastic, too. Just a data point.

    2. Antwerp Guest

      I fly them every three weeks between IAD and LHR or FRA and have not seen a coursed meal to date. Including last week.

    3. Julia Guest

      I flew UA last week between GVA and ORD. The meal was coursed properly.

    4. Antwerp Guest

      I'm honestly not sure where some of you are getting coursed meals in Polaris. I have been flying every few weeks between IAD and Europe...since Covid I've have never seen it. Either you are imagining that coursing is bringing dessert separately or there seems to be a disconnect on many flights. I have not, since 2020, had one meal that was not served entirely on a tray in Polaris as salad, bread, starter, and main. Not once, and that is a LOT of flights.

    5. Daniel Guest

      Can't agree with you more.
      On teh whole I have seen some level of improvement on recent Polaris meals but it bugs me to no end they serve it all together.

      Such a simple change that would almost instantly elevate how I and others perceive their food.

    6. Dusty Guest

      Flew HKG to SFO and SFO to SIN in January and March. All meals properly coursed.

  43. roger Guest

    Lots of assumptions/insinuations being made about the Inflight Experience. Writer has no business even mentioning ongoing negotiations because first of all it DOESN'T concern them and the fact that not all FAs believe all that BS that filters thru the media or let it effect their job performance. Unless you have been a FA, You as a Passenger are in a limited position To Judge anyone's performance.....it is just Your expectation of what should happen....

    Lots of assumptions/insinuations being made about the Inflight Experience. Writer has no business even mentioning ongoing negotiations because first of all it DOESN'T concern them and the fact that not all FAs believe all that BS that filters thru the media or let it effect their job performance. Unless you have been a FA, You as a Passenger are in a limited position To Judge anyone's performance.....it is just Your expectation of what should happen. I get real tired reading many of these reviews because when it comes down to it much of what is reported is nothing more than some Bloggers Opinion and quite frankly, No one cares what you have to say because more often than not it is pure BS.

    1. D3kingg Guest

      @roger

      I would agree with some of this. The reality is most passengers are difficult to deal with and an FAs hard work ethic should not go unappreciated. At the end of the day they have lives and loved ones to go home to.

      On the other hand ongoing negotiations certainly affect the companies bottom line and are of concern whether a customer , shareholder , or blogger.

      Furthermore passing judgement on...

      @roger

      I would agree with some of this. The reality is most passengers are difficult to deal with and an FAs hard work ethic should not go unappreciated. At the end of the day they have lives and loved ones to go home to.

      On the other hand ongoing negotiations certainly affect the companies bottom line and are of concern whether a customer , shareholder , or blogger.

      Furthermore passing judgement on a blogger who has been wealthy their entire life and has never known the struggle of living paycheck to paycheck is a fallacy. They have problems in life just as anyone else.

    2. Tim Dunn Diamond

      No. MOST passengers are not hard to deal with.
      Negotiations are part of the rhythm of being unionized

    3. Brodie Gold

      @roger,
      You sound bitter. And I for one find Ben’s reviews spot on.

    4. Steve Guest

      What’s with all the hostility? He gave a great review of the flight which is good brand recognition for the company. Ben is one of the fairest and most balanced bloggers out there. Like it or not people are influenced by what they see online. It’s a good for the public to see that despite the fact that we are under negations, which is no secret, that customers can still receive great service from us.

    5. LarryInNYC Diamond

      Roger: Perhaps this blog -- or at least the reviews section -- is not for you? Its very raison d'etre is to review the details of airplane travel, including the level of service offered by the crew. Why do you expect anything else?

      Is it a little weird to find a young person who's never worked in the service industry making pronouncements about the service offered to him by people paid a small fraction...

      Roger: Perhaps this blog -- or at least the reviews section -- is not for you? Its very raison d'etre is to review the details of airplane travel, including the level of service offered by the crew. Why do you expect anything else?

      Is it a little weird to find a young person who's never worked in the service industry making pronouncements about the service offered to him by people paid a small fraction of what he makes from commenting about them? Sure, somewhat. But it's not a crime and you can avoid the unhapiness simply by averting your gaze.

    6. Lee Guest

      The CUSTOMER is the judge of performance. Imagine a customer who goes into any restaurant and receives poor service from a waiter. Imagine a customer who goes into any store and receives poor service from a salesperson. Ben has been on countless flights and has such broad exposure across so many airlines that his comments are not anecdotal. Yes, some customers are jerks. But, we must acknowledge that some flight attendants are entitled jerks as well.

    7. James Guest

      Of course people care what reviewers have to say, that’s the entire point of reviews. If you have a good blogger like Ben their opinion is useful as they have much to compare it too - including his experience of other FA’s service. And why are you trying to police what he includes in his review? I for one am interested to know that negotiations are going on as it’s provides context. Stop telling him what he should and shouldn’t write up.

    8. GBOAC Diamond

      Roger states
      "I get real tired reading many of these reviews because when it comes down to it much of what is reported is nothing more than some Bloggers Opinion and quite frankly, No one cares what you have to say because more often than not it is pure BS."
      Poor Roger doesn't seem to understand exactly that OMAAT is a series of reports that expresses Ben's (the blogger) reaction/opinions on his travels....

      Roger states
      "I get real tired reading many of these reviews because when it comes down to it much of what is reported is nothing more than some Bloggers Opinion and quite frankly, No one cares what you have to say because more often than not it is pure BS."
      Poor Roger doesn't seem to understand exactly that OMAAT is a series of reports that expresses Ben's (the blogger) reaction/opinions on his travels. I seriously doubt "No one cares what you have to say" --- his readership belies that claim.

    9. Lee Guest

      Ben has the third largest readership in the US. Someone is interested in what he's saying.

    10. BenjaminGuttery Diamond

      Roger: Keep wearing your protest pins and keep voting in officers that are lying and stealing from you and your colleagues. That'll get you EXACTLY what you deserve.

    11. Lee Guest

      And, if you really dig into how the Union's retirement plan is managed . . .

    12. Julia Guest

      "because when it comes down to it much of what is reported is nothing more than some Bloggers Opinion and quite frankly, No one cares what you have to say because more often than not it is pure BS."

      I mean, aren't all of these trip reports "some Bloggers Opinion"?

      And if no one cares, why are you here reading and commenting?

  44. Duck Ling Guest

    Hey Ben, I recently flew the opposite direction (Miami to Europe, MAD to be specific) and I thought the fight was up there with the best I have had in business class.

    It was to be my first time in the AA forward/rearward alternating J seats and I was a little dubious to their comfort but found them incredible comfortable. The cabin was also spotless and I thought very aesthetically attractive.

    The flight departed bang...

    Hey Ben, I recently flew the opposite direction (Miami to Europe, MAD to be specific) and I thought the fight was up there with the best I have had in business class.

    It was to be my first time in the AA forward/rearward alternating J seats and I was a little dubious to their comfort but found them incredible comfortable. The cabin was also spotless and I thought very aesthetically attractive.

    The flight departed bang on time and I had an absolute rock star crew member looking after me. The perfect balance between friendly, informal yet efficient and professional. If only it wasn't such a lottery!

  45. Lukas Diamond

    I flew this exact plane recently LAX-LHR. I think people are exaggerating the shaking because mine was minimal (I also chose the backwards-facing seat). In addition, my FA was also excellent! I was very pleasantly surprised as that's certainly not what I expected from AA. Unfortunately, I didn't grab his name but at least I gave him an in-person compliment.

    1. shar Guest

      Lukas - I agree with you on the exaggeration of the shaking. I was on two recent flights in and out of Dublin on the "rocking" set up. The seats never rocked and it was not an issue at all.

  46. D3kingg Guest

    Glad to hear it Ben. Did you have any issues with touch screen buttons getting the seat in and out of lie flat mode ? Did it take some additional effort or did the seat randomly stop at times ?

  47. Tim Dunn Diamond

    You hit the nail on the head with American.
    They have as good as of better hard product but their service across the board is nowhere near the top of the industry and it is highly inconsistent.
    Your FA gave what is top tier service but that is not the norm. And, AA is predominantly a domestic airline; they now schedule a higher percentage of their network flights on regional jets than any...

    You hit the nail on the head with American.
    They have as good as of better hard product but their service across the board is nowhere near the top of the industry and it is highly inconsistent.
    Your FA gave what is top tier service but that is not the norm. And, AA is predominantly a domestic airline; they now schedule a higher percentage of their network flights on regional jets than any other US airline.
    Getting a great international FA helps improve the reputation for AA but it is their domestic network that defines their image.
    and you could easily have encountered far worse service on an AA international flight.

    Count yourself lucky.

    1. D3kingg Guest

      I know they don’t take tips but if the FA was exceptional and they are collecting money for unicef children I will contribute.

    2. LarryInNYC Diamond

      On my last flight, I think the FA did mention that she was one of the leading fundraisers, so I think they do get some honor and glory if you contribute that way.

    3. Tim Dunn Diamond

      And if that cause matters to you, you should do it anyway. It should have no impact on service or your giving

    4. BenjaminGuttery Diamond

      Timmy. Shut up. The FA was only PROUD that they were able to be on the list of top donation getters. You comment luke something is factual off of an anecdote comment on a blog. Get a life man.

    5. Tim Dunn Diamond

      you've posted multiple times.
      I will write when and what I want to write.

      If you give to something that you support because someone asks you as a result of getting service you like, it doesn't say much about your motivations.

    6. Mark Guest

      With the smallest international network of the big 3, and thus fewer FA’s holding longhaul lines, you’d think AA should be able to identify training opportunities where needed to provide excellent service across the board. It seems they really aren’t focusing on that or are unable to do so which is a shame.

      It’s just another data point in a sea of many that AA is laser focused on their domestic business.

    7. LadyOlives Guest

      And you know this, how? Because you fly AA? Sounds like your usual BS.

    8. MaxPower Diamond

      Delta is also a predominantly domestic airline too, Timmy ;) but also has better partners than delta internationally that are happy to cover the international network where aa is smaller on a percentage basis than others.

      Calm down that lucky had a good flight and a good review of aa. It shouldn’t ruin your day like this.
      You sound like your normal irrational petty self

    9. Tim Dunn Diamond

      no, American is the LEAST international of the big 3.
      Delta flies the most ASMs on its own equipment (mainline) of the big 3 but AA is the largest domestic by ASMs when regional jets are considered.

      As has been fully the case, you come unglued if anything even remotely negative is said about AA - and then you post falsehoods and engage in personal attacks.

      The only one irrational and unhinged is you...

      no, American is the LEAST international of the big 3.
      Delta flies the most ASMs on its own equipment (mainline) of the big 3 but AA is the largest domestic by ASMs when regional jets are considered.

      As has been fully the case, you come unglued if anything even remotely negative is said about AA - and then you post falsehoods and engage in personal attacks.

      The only one irrational and unhinged is you Max

      and yes, shoeguy, AA's domestic service defines how it is perceived. Plenty of other readers talk about the lack of service on AA domestic - from PDBs to any number of other service elements - that are the norm for low cost carriers and not the big 3.

      AA and its regional partners are the largest domestic and smallest international revenue - and AA like the big 3- gets the majority of its revenue from domestic.

      It is absolute accurate to say that AA is predominantly a domestic airline and also accurate to say that a few one-off positive international experiences - esp. in a premium cabin - doesn't change how AA is perceived.
      You need only look at actual unbiased data to see that AA ranks the lowest of the big 4 in service

    10. MaxPower Diamond

      You really need mental help, Tim
      You don’t even know that aa and dl are both predominately domestic airlines. United is more domestic than international too.
      Sorry that you hate facts but it’s true. delta has more international flights as a percent vs domestic but they’re still vastly more domestic than international.
      And if you’d stop fanboying for a second and looked at reason, you’d know why delta is a tad more...

      You really need mental help, Tim
      You don’t even know that aa and dl are both predominately domestic airlines. United is more domestic than international too.
      Sorry that you hate facts but it’s true. delta has more international flights as a percent vs domestic but they’re still vastly more domestic than international.
      And if you’d stop fanboying for a second and looked at reason, you’d know why delta is a tad more international than aa and it isn’t because they necessarily want to be but rather because their pilot contract requires them to be. Delta just doesn’t know how to negotiate with their unions like aa does so aa has the freedom to fly what they deem most profitable that isn’t dictated by a union.

      I don’t think any aa flyer minds taking JAL, Qatar, BA, or Qantas over AA when needed. Delta flyers… they have some good partners, but nothing like AAdvantage partners.

      You need mental help. Go sulk in your corner like the child you are. No one cares when delta gets a good flight review, it’s just you whining like a child when lucky and many others in the comments note AA’s service

    11. MaxPower Diamond

      “ delta has more international flights as a percent vs domestic” vs aa

    12. Tim Dunn Diamond

      Delta flies more international than American but not as much as United (right now) because Delta knows the level of flying it needs to do to generate maximum profits.

      Delta makes the most money on both its international and domestic networks of any US airlines. American can't find any more routes where it can be profitable so quit trying. United thinks it will make more money by flying more but they make less money flying...

      Delta flies more international than American but not as much as United (right now) because Delta knows the level of flying it needs to do to generate maximum profits.

      Delta makes the most money on both its international and domestic networks of any US airlines. American can't find any more routes where it can be profitable so quit trying. United thinks it will make more money by flying more but they make less money flying a larger network.

      Delta negotiated a pilot contract that supports what the company needs, not the other way around.

      Given Air France/KLM is larger and more profitable than British Airways, Korean is larger than JAL and Latam is larger than all other airlines in Latin America except for AA, DL is quite comfortable with its partners. Whether you see value in them or not doesn't matter one iota.

    13. shoeguy Guest

      American isn't "predominantly a domestic airline", and no more than Delta is a "premium airline". American has a vast network of international flights, with a focus on the Caribbean, Central, and South America and a significant TATL footprint. To Asia, it lags its US peers.

      American's brand isn't defined by its "Domestic" image. As usual, you have no idea what you are talking about and simply fanboying for Delta.

      The US3 have their strengths...

      American isn't "predominantly a domestic airline", and no more than Delta is a "premium airline". American has a vast network of international flights, with a focus on the Caribbean, Central, and South America and a significant TATL footprint. To Asia, it lags its US peers.

      American's brand isn't defined by its "Domestic" image. As usual, you have no idea what you are talking about and simply fanboying for Delta.

      The US3 have their strengths and their limitations across the board.

  48. KK13 Diamond

    “ I always struggle with the decision of whether to fly a US or European carrier across the Atlantic.”

    Glad you covered this. I’ve the same dilemma, fly in AA 777 or BA 380 from London to Miami for an upcoming trip. I’d wait for your full review.

    A question I have, does American upgrade from Econ or PE to business (spending on availability) for free on international legs? Or, can I use my miles to upgrade? I'm Platinum Pro.

    1. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ KK13 -- There are no complimentary upgrades (aside from operational upgrades), but you can use miles to upgrade. More on that here:
      https://onemileatatime.com/guides/upgrade-american-flights-miles/

      Honestly, between any American wide body plane and the British Airways A380, I'd choose American, given that the A380 has the old Club World business class. There's a huge difference in terms of hard product quality there.

    2. KK13 Diamond

      Ben, thanks for your suggestion. I’d choose AA then. Somehow I missed that review, thanks for posting it.

      For another trip I chose Iberia business class CDG-MAD-MIA (honestly, to accrue AA miles); let’s hope it goes smooth. I’ve heard the food is very good and services are much better in business on IB.

    3. BenjaminGuttery Diamond

      The service and food are fine, the staff at MAD are very rude and incompetent. Expect no help being guided to where you need to go unless you are fluent in Spanish and expect your checked bags to be left behind. Also the seats are typically older.

    4. KK13 Diamond

      You're right; I have heard about the pandemonium at Barajas airport. I will have to take my chances. The IB flight has the most suitable timing for my itinerary, so I went for it.

      IB recently introduced new seats and a style with private doors on a few of their A350 transatlantic flights. I hope to fly in one of those birds. *fingers crossed*

    5. JT Guest

      Upstairs window seats on a BA A380 are as good as the old club world gets. You have space with storage (but he window), and much more room for your feet. There are also some seats which have direct aisle access. And BA bedding is good.

      But just flown transpacific for the first time in Polaris, and your point about US airline bedding is spot on. What a difference it makes. Gel pillows are a revelation.

Featured Comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

Ben Schlappig OMAAT

@ KK13 -- There are no complimentary upgrades (aside from operational upgrades), but you can use miles to upgrade. More on that here: https://onemileatatime.com/guides/upgrade-american-flights-miles/ Honestly, between any American wide body plane and the British Airways A380, I'd choose American, given that the A380 has the old Club World business class. There's a huge difference in terms of hard product quality there.

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MaxPower Diamond

Sort of amusing how controversial a positive review of aa business turned out to be. Definitely ruined some fanboy’s day

3
Kelley Guest

I recently flew on BA from SEA to LHR on a(n older) 777. In first on the way outbound and business on the return. The first class seat was AWFUL. No storage, hard, uncomfortable, and the bedding wasn't great either. The service was fantastic, but the food was basically convention chicken (you know, the basic chicken that always seems to be served at large meetings). The business class seat on the return was better, more comfortable, and had more storage. Service was again great, but I can't speak to the food because the salad served for our first course snuck in something that I am allergic to (I should have read the menu more carefully, the clue was there....) and I ended up achieving a lifetime first experience of vomiting in the business class loo. Yay. Bless the flight attendants, afterward they found some plain crackers and kept the ginger ale coming. (Side note - if you have to yark on a plane, I recommend doubling up the bags and doing it in there - even in the loo. It's neater and less splashy, plus you don't have to get on your knees. How's that for more than you ever wanted to know?).

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