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June 23, 2014

American's 777-300ER provides luxury travel for international passengers

American to Hong Kong 021Boarding American Airlines’ new Boeing 777-300ER, passengers are greeted by soft mood lighting and an archway leading through a walkup bar.

Bose noise-canceling headsets, bed slippers and amenity kits with Dermalogica and Akhassa products await premium travelers at their seats, along with menus offering a choice of four entrees and several wine and liquor selections.

And by the time flight attendants serve made-to-order sundaes a few hours into the flight, it’s clear that business class is more than just hot towels and a few more inches of legroom.

“You spend a lot of time on an airplane so we wanted to make sure the design and the finishes allow for a peaceful journey,” said Fern Fernandez, American’s vice president of global marketing. “We’re in the business of transporting you from point A to point B, but we want to make it in a comfortable sort of fashion that puts you at ease.”

American received its first 777-300ER, now its largest plane with seats for 310 passengers, in January 2013. It currently has 10 in its fleet, with 10 more on order from Boeing. It flies the aircraft on flights from Dallas/Fort Worth Airport, Los Angeles and New York to Hong Kong, London and Sao Paulo, Brazil, and Fernandez expects the incoming 777-300ERs will be used on similar, long international flights where there is demand for a premium travel product.

For the Fort Worth-based carrier, new airplanes with premium cabins and older aircraft retrofitted with modern finishes and comfortable seats are critical to winning back corporate customers lost during a two-year stint in bankruptcy court.

Frequent fliers and high-spending business customers want two things on a long flight: aisle access and lie-flat seats, said Brett Snyder, founder of CrankyFlier.com. With the introduction of the Boeing 777-300ER, which has both features in business and first class, American is finally catching up to competitors United Airlines and Delta Air Lines, which already have lie-flat seats in business class on their long-haul aircraft.

“If you’re looking to compete with international carriers, you need these premium products,” said Snyder, who experienced American’s new 777-300 aircraft on a flight from Los Angeles to London’s Heathrow Airport last summer. “I think it’s a great product, and it’s something they can build off of.”

To read the full story that appeared in Sunday's Star-Telegram, click here.



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Is this an advertisement or a blog post? The only news here is how the new 777-300s have crammed even more unsuspecting coach passengers into 10-abreast seating. That sounds absolutely torturous on a 14 hour flight!


Stuffing 10 abreast on a fuselage designed really for 9 is not pleasurable for the passenger. Sure the extra amenities are nice, power ports, AVOD etc, but as I found out on the A319 with AA - you don't care as much for that when you are stuffed in a seat with less legroom and a rock hard 'slimline' cushion.

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