Review of American Airlines flight San Francisco Miami in Premium Eco

Airline American Airlines
Flight AA 931
Class Premium Eco
Seat 12J
Flight time 05:26
Take-off 16 Apr 16, 12:10
Arrival at 16 Apr 16, 20:36
AA   #28 out of 69 Airlines A minimum of 10 flight-reports within the past two years is required to appear in the rankings. 507 reviews
jetsetpanda
By 1734
Published on 17th April 2016
Hi and welcome to this short weekend trip to MIA. My schedule is as follows:

SFO-MIA in Y - you are here.
MIA-LAX in F - http://flight-report.com/en/report-14046.html
LAX-SFO in F - click here


This trip was planned a few months ago and it was basically a short trip to visit my family. I grew up in MIA and attended high school and college there, so it has a special meaning to me.

I left my car at SFO Park and the shuttle brought me to the airport at 10:30A. Security was fairly quick and when I arrived at the gate I saw that I was #1 on the upgrade list. As an Executive Platinum with AA I get automatic standby to F on domestic flights which is a neat benefit. The night before there was still 1 seat available for sale on AA's website and 3 open seats in the front according to the seat map. I felt that I had a chance to be upgraded on this Sat. flight and was mildly optimistic. I checked with an agent and she confirmed that it looked good. Eventually the crew arrived and the agents started to do preliminary boarding at about 40 min. before dept. My name was called and when I walked up to the podium the agent said "Mr. Jetsetpanda, the flight has checked in full today in F - sorry." Well, at least she communicated the bad news in person and right after that she made an announcement that the F cabin was full for the other 13 passengers on the upgrade list. SFO-MIA is a pretty tough route to upgrade and it will be almost impossible when this flight converts to a 737 later during the year.

Gate area.

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My plane at the gate. T2 has these "dots" on the windows that do not allow for good picture taking. However, if you put your lenses up close to the window you might get a somewhat decent shot.

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Crew arriving at the gate.

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An A321T on the way to JFK.

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Upon boarding a friendly FA greeted me at the door and this renovated 763 only has 2 rows of MCE instead of the 3 that it used to have.

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Plane spotting from my seat.




Perhaps I should save these pictures for posterity. Who knows if VX will be around in the future.

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Take off with this Frontier plane next to us.

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San Mateo Bridge in the background which connects the Peninsula with the East Bay.

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Frontier plane in the distance.

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OAK airport.

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SFO downtown.

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Golden Gate Bridge.

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Sunset district which is a residential suburb in SF.

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Along the eastern side of the Peninsula.




Service started with earphones for sale at USD 5.00 per piece. Not too many takes from the cabin. This was then followed by drinks and a bag of pretzels. I requested the quinoa wrap and when the FA verified my name on her pad with my status, she acknowledged that it was free.

The quinoa wrap was a bit tasteless and not a good value at USD 8.99 - you get half a small wrap and some grapes thrown in. According to its description online it consists of a "tortilla filled with sweet chili quinoa salad, carrots, tomatoes, feta cheese and edamame hummus spread".




Some aerials views along the way.

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Visit to the old school WC with cups provided. I don't think the airline should encourage people to drink the water from the faucet.

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Cabin.

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About 1 hr. before arrival the FA's made a beverage service and that concluded the onboard service.

We arrived earlier than expected at 20:04 but were on hold on the ground because our assigned gate was occupied. In the end another gate was assigned to us and the benefit of arriving earlier was almost negated by the wait for a gate. To his credit the captain kept us updated throughout the entire wait.

Arriving in MIA.




Finally at the gate.

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See more

Verdict

American Airlines

7.1/10
Cabin8.5
Cabin crew8.0
Entertainment/wifi7.0
Meal/catering5.0

San Francisco - SFO

8.9/10
Efficiency8.5
Access9.0
Services9.0
Cleanliness9.0

Miami - MIA

7.9/10
Efficiency7.5
Access8.0
Services8.0
Cleanliness8.0

Conclusion

The bulkhead seat was comfortable and I was able to get out with ease without bothering my neighbor to step out. I noticed that the seats had more cushion and they look slightly different with a red streak on top.

Entertainment was played on the monitors. I did not partake on the movie and sitcom that were played.

Catering was disappointing with a half wrap that did not represent value for money.

We arrived earlier than expected but the delay at assigning a gate negated this advantage.

Information on the route San Francisco (SFO) Miami (MIA)

15 Comments

If you liked this review or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below !
  • Comment 162260 by
    eminere™ 274 Comments

    I believe the cups in the toilets are for the convenience of passengers wishing to brush their teeth or gargle. Not for drinking the water from the tap, which isn't potable anyway.

    • Comment 346033 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2294 Comments

      Frequent travelers know that tap water in airplanes is to be avoided, but those that fly less frequently or for the first time might not know better, especially since there are no signs in the WC's against drinking the water (as I have seen on other airlines).

  • Comment 162270 by
    Rl 777 806 Comments

    Thank you for sharing this FR with us!

    The weather in SFO looked good that day, nice spotting shots from SFO!

    Absolutely fantastic aerial shots with clear skies!

    That wrap looks very small, especially for 9 bucks (don't think the grapes compensated).

    Great shots before arriving at MIA!

    Have a good one, see you!

  • Comment 162293 by
    Chibcha SILVER 460 Comments

    Well done, you managed to make a regular US flight something interesting, specially because of the great pictures!

  • Comment 162312 by
    socalnow 978 Comments

    Greetings Jetsetpanda and thanks for the FR.

    The pictures leaving SFO are great and the clear skies are perfect. Such a stunning and photogenic place, the Bay Area. Parallel takeoffs/landings at SFO are always cool too. I spotted the KE 747-8. I didn't know SFO was seeing this airplane.

    The $5 headset for overhead video and $9 wrap are insulting.

    To his credit the captain kept us updated throughout the entire wait.
    -This makes all the difference and in my experience with AA it's not universally their procedure to do so.

    Thanks again and happy flying.

    • Comment 346054 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2294 Comments

      I spotted the KE 747-8. I didn't know SFO was seeing this airplane.
      - I think the change has been recent. I remember seeing a KE 773 a few weeks ago.

      The wrap is the worst value that I have seen for a BOB. AA should get rid of it. As for the earphones, I think $5 is overpriced.

      I guess I was lucky that I had a proactive pilot. Another thing that caught my attention is that at the beginning of the flight he mentioned that since this was a long flight he will limit his announcements to the minimum.

      Thank you Christian for your comments.

  • Comment 162315 by
    marathon GOLD 9857 Comments

    Is it me, or the blue paint of the KL 744 faded by the time you took the next picture in SFO ? :)

    Superb views of SF after take-off !

    The quinoa wrap is good value if you get it for free. I would not buy it for 8.99$.

    I don't think the airline should encourage people to drink the water from the faucet.
    The lingering question is how unclean is really the water in the clean water tank ?. Or : how many travellers got sick after drinking it?

    Nice night shots landing in MIA

    Thanks for sharing !

    • Comment 346055 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2294 Comments

      Is it me, or the blue paint of the KL 744 faded by the time you took the next picture in SFO ? :)
      - Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde syndrome? :P

      The quinoa wrap is good value if you get it for free. I would not buy it for 8.99$.
      - Even better when you get a wrap and sandwich free. ;)

      The lingering question is how unclean is really the water in the clean water tank ?. Or : how many travellers got sick after drinking it?
      - That is an interesting question. Aircraft cleaning, especially the water tanks is not regulated by FAA, OSHA or FDA and is up to the individual carriers to schedule them.

      Nice night shots landing in MIA
      - I guess I have a nice point and shoot little camera. :P

      Thanks Marathon for stopping by.

  • Comment 162322 by
    757Fan 608 Comments

    Nice report Jetsetpanda!

    As an Executive Platinum with AA I get automatic standby to F on domestic flights which is a neat benefit. The night before there was still 1 seat available for sale on AA's website and 3 open seats in the front according to the seat map. I felt that I had a chance to be upgraded on this Sat. flight and was mildly optimistic. I checked with an agent and she confirmed that it looked good. Eventually the crew arrived and the agents started to do preliminary boarding at about 40 min. before dept. My name was called and when I walked up to the podium the agent said Mr. Jetsetpanda, the flight has checked in full today in F - sorry.

    It's tough to get an upgrade these days ... The planes are just so full!

    Looks like a nice flight though. Great day for flying!

    Best,

    Matthew

    • Comment 346056 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2294 Comments

      The transcon SFO-MIA is a particularly tough one to get upgraded. There are 4 flights a day between these two cities so there is a strong demand. Honestly I don't know why the new AA would not treat this route as transcon premium just like SFO/LAX-JFK or LAX-MIA.

      Thanks Matthew.

  • Comment 162497 by
    NGO85 1622 Comments

    Thanks for sharing Adan! Beautiful weather on departure in SFO.

    The B763 must continue onto South America? I was surprised to see the retrofitted cabin on this plane, I would have expected older cabins floating around on the domestic sectors.

    Service started with earphones for sale at USD 5.00 per piece.
    - A 2000% markup? There is no on-demand IFE even in Y on the retrofitted B763s? I'd hate to be on these for long-haul flights.

    The quinoa wrap was a bit tasteless and not a good value at USD 8.99
    - I agree it's not great value considering what some of the other items on the BOB look like, but I don't find the price to be outrageous based on what any shop in the terminal will charge you for the same item...

    I don't think the airline should encourage people to drink the water from the faucet.
    - I just think they should be removed on the domestic leg and then restocked for the subsequent international flights.

    I noticed that the seats had more cushion and they look slightly different with a red streak on top.
    - Is this also true on the B77Ws? Are the seats slightly different in the mini MCE cabin that is still in 3-3-3 configuration (or have you not tried those out yet)?

    • Comment 346344 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2294 Comments

      The B763 must continue onto South America?
      - Good question. The flight number is a continuation from MIA-EZE, but the equipment changes to a 773.

      A 2000% markup? There is no on-demand IFE even in Y on the retrofitted B763s?
      - Overpriced and not worth it. No on-demand IFE.

      ..but I don't find the price to be outrageous based on what any shop in the terminal will charge you for the same item...
      - A Cuban sandwich is far more tastier. ;)

      Is this also true on the B77Ws? Are the seats slightly different in the mini MCE cabin that is still in 3-3-3 configuration (or have you not tried those out yet)?
      - I have not tried AA's new B77W's yet. Incidentally, I will be flying to GIG in June and recently noticed that the mini MCE cabin has changed from 3-3-3 to 3-4-3. Kind of sneaky.

      As always thanks for your feedback Michael.

    • Comment 346358 by
      NGO85 1622 Comments

      flying to GIG in June and recently noticed that the mini MCE cabin has changed from 3-3-3 to 3-4-3. Kind of sneaky.
      - I'm on a B77W next month and it is still showing 3-3-3 in the mini-cabin. I wonder why they would wast their times switching it 3-3-3 to 3-4-3 if this is going to become the new Y+ cabin next year.

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