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December 23, 2013

No. 9 American gets new airplanes

28911_10151507039116078_1028458034_n (1)Two years after announcing its mega-order of 460 planes, American Airlines got a whiff of that new airplane smell.

The carrier received its first Airbus aircraft in July. American is using the A319s to replace its aging MD-80 fleet on domestic routes. The new aircraft has leather seats, Wi-Fi and in-seat entertainment along with individual power outlets and USB jacks at every seat. The A319 has 128 seats.

American also got its first A321 in November and will use the aircraft on its transcontinental flights in early 2014. Even though it is a single-aisle aircraft, the A321 will have first and business class sections with lie-flat seats.

But the year started off with another type of new plane.

American put its first Boeing 777-300ER into service on the Dallas/Fort Worth-Sao Paulo route in January. The three-class aircraft which featured a new industrial gray interior with mood lighting was used by the airline to show off its new brand and livery when it was unveiled earlier this year. The aircraft is also being used on its London Heathrow routes from DFW and New York's JFK airport.

All of the new aircraft that American has received this year are part of the carrier's fleet renewal program as it is replacing hundreds of older aircraft including its MD-80s and Boeing 767s, some of which are over twenty years old.

It received almost 60 new planes this year from Boeing and Airbus and more are scheduled to be delivered in 2014.

-Andrea Ahles

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