Weekend in Paris: Conclusion

Suffice it to say that this trip was probably the easiest way I’ve ever qualified for elite status, and the first time I ever paid for business class internationally and upgraded. Given the amazing deal I got along with the promotions American was running (double elite qualifying miles, 20,000 bonus miles, etc.), I’d say it was a pretty darn good value.

American’s international first class definitely can’t compete with the first class products offered by most Asian and European airlines, though for a business class fare with an upgrade, it’s a spectacular value. The seats are very comfortable with plenty of personal space. My only complaint would be the lack of bedding, though that’s something they’ve addressed in the meantime, given that they now offer turndown service and pajamas in international first class. As is usually the case on US airlines, the service was inconsistent, ranging from a mediocre crew on the outbound to a spectacular crew on the return.

While the meal service was no gourmet dining experience like what you would get on Lufthansa or Singapore, the food was simple and tasty, so I have no complaints there. I’ll trade the caviar on Lufthansa or Singapore for the ice cream sundae on American any day of the week (I realize I’ll get hate mail over that). 😉

Anyway, thanks for reading and for your patience, as I realize this report was rolled out over a long time. I already have plenty of travel planned in business and first class on American over the coming year, and I’ll be sure to report back on those experiences.

Filed Under: Travel
  1. “I’ll trade the caviar on Lufthansa or Singapore for the ice cream sundae on American any day of the week”

    No hate mail, but consider:

    1. On Lufthansa and Singapore YOU GET DESSERT TOO. So no need to trade, you get caviar (and on Singapore, satay!) and you get dessert. Drinking a bit too much Kool AAid if you’re already presenting yourself with constraints like that!

    2. Ice cream you have at home, how often do you eat caviar, it’s part of making the first class flight experience SPECIAL. Ice cream is ordinary, even if delcious.

    3. I don’t know about you, but I’ve had ice cream on SQ…

    Just sayin’.

  2. As much as I like to travel, and travel in style, I am with Gary…you can eat ice cream at home. And nothing beats a nice bed or couch at home, even though it is novelty on the plane…

  3. It will be fascinating to read your report on your forthcoming AA nonstop from Chicago to New Delhi and see how their service may have improved (and that is certainly an option for my own forthcoming trip to India, though I suspect we’ll opt for Lufthansa (I just get nervous as they once misplaced one of my bags and the connecting times in Frankfort are too short, both for the baggage and to enjoy the First Class Terminal…maybe an overnight in Frankfort if their is an airport hotel actually connected to the terminal so I don’t need to bring heavy clothes).

  4. Now that you’ve gotten underway with your AA experiment, any chance you’ll be putting together a post in the near future about where you see yourself long term, in terms of going back to United full time, moving towards AA as your primary carier, or trying to maintain top status on both in the years ahead?

  5. Stuart, there is a Sheraton connected at FRA, it is a very short walk inside the terminal and follow the signs to the long distance train station. Hotel is ok and has a lounge in case you have Starwood status.

  6. Thanks, I’ve enjoyed your trip reports .. even spread out across time, tho being new to your blog, I was confused at times “exactly where is he now” !!

    Love the blog.
    I too would take ice cream over caviar.

  7. AA’s ice cream sundaes are freaking amazing. Sure, they’re simple, but AA does it well. The berry topping is always excellent and the ice cream is almost always the right consistency, compared to nearly every other carrier who serves rock hard ice cream. I am baffled when I read trip reports on FT that say ice cream sundaes are inadequate desserts in long haul F. I enjoy them more than any dessert I’ve had the multiple times I’ve been in BA, CX and QF F.

  8. Ahhh … the Ice Cream Sundaes
    I say forget the standard toppings. Just pour some Amaretto on it and I’m good to go.

  9. I find LH’s FC food average at best, and it was even worse on the A380 to SFO. While I want the experience to be special, what tastes good on the ground may not taste good in the air. I find the simple comforting foods, to include the ice cream sundaes, are a better option.

  10. Just curious what double EQM deals you got, as you’re not a resident of the target states (IL and CA, maybe TX)? Or did I just miss out on a promo I really need for requal??? 🙁

  11. I tend to fall into the casual/junk food eater category and have no desire for caviar and other exotic foods. I just like extra space and being treated with some respect while traveling.

    @Stuart Falk
    The hotel connected to FRA is fine. We checked in early then took the train to Heidelburg for the rest of the day and return to the hotel to pack and sleep for the night. The next morning we walked over to the FCT in the cold and snow (it was last december). For us, it wasn’t obvious where the FCT was located since construction was going on and I guess most people arrive to it via another entrance (I’m guessing).

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