Review of American Airlines flight Miami Los Angeles in Business

Airline American Airlines
Flight AA 139
Class Business
Seat 3H
Flight time 05:37
Take-off 18 Apr 16, 12:15
Arrival at 18 Apr 16, 14:52
AA   #75 out of 141 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 444 reviews
jetsetpanda
By 2540
Published on 24th April 2016
Hi and welcome to the return portion of this MIA weekend trip. Here is my schedule so far:

SFO-MIA in Y - http://flight-report.com/en/report-13978.html
MIA-LAX in F - you are here.
LAX-SFO in F - click here


The night before I had a great stay at the Hyatt Place MIA Airport East which was located next to the airport by the NW 42nd Av. (Le Jeune Rd.) side. The hotel has a modern decor and the tastefully appointed room was equipped with a handy small refrigerator. I enjoyed a restful sleep thanks for the soundproof windows and the next morning I woke up with just enough time to shower and take the shuttle to the airport. Unfortunately I did not take advantage of the free breakfast that was included in the rate and in my haste was unable to take pictures of the property. The only image from the hotel was the view from my room facing the runway of the airport.

View from my room.

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I arrived at the airport within 1 1/2 hrs before dept. and the security lines did not seem as overwhelming as in the past. I saw plenty of self check-in kiosks around the counter areas and agents were available to provide assistance. I quickly printed my boarding pass and luckily it was marked "TSA Pre-checked". The line was a bit long but it moved quickly since we did not have to take off our shoes, computers or belts.


Admirals Club by D15.

I paid a quick visit to the Admirals Club and this particular one was under renovation, so most guests sat outside in the "al fresco" section. A friendly agent checked me in and insisted in giving me 2 drink coupons despite my earlier refusal. She suggested me to get a bottle of water and I just couldn't say no to her thoughtful advice.

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Outside area.

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Buffet.

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Inside.

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I headed out to the gate at 40 min. before dept. and I arrived at a crowded one. During boarding I was greeted by the purser who was at the door. On today's flight we had a last minute plane substitution and we went from a reconfigured plane to an old one with the angled seats and a 2-2-2 configuration. I was traveling with my mother and sister and it was a good thing that I checked the night before and noticed the change of equipment so I was able to assign them seats together. The system had automatically split them during the change and did not even sent a message about such change. Some people were caught by surprise and at one point I heard a passenger in the F cabin vent his frustration loudly within everyone's earshot. A supervisor had to come aboard in order to appease him and eventually the matter was resolved. He was adamant to have a specific seat with aisle access and I guess that he was assigned a window seat in the back during the plane snafu. I could sympathize with his predicament up to the point when he emphasized his importance as an elite passenger and proceeded to have a "meltdown" in front of everybody.

Cabin.




Lately I have been fortunate to have engaging seatmates during my travels and this flight was no exception. I sat next to an affable gentleman who turned out to be an EXP on a business trip and I caught his attention when I started to take pictures to document my report. We had a nice conversation about our favorite airlines and frequent flyer programs. I personally think that one of the most enjoyable aspects of traveling is meeting people that share one's interests and when you are able to establish a connection then the experience becomes even more rewarding.

Eventually the flight attendants distributed pre-dept. drinks consisting of sparkling wine, water and orange juice.

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An amenity kit was already placed in front of the seat and to my delight it was the US Airways legacy one which I have always wanted to obtain.

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After departure Bose headsets and tablets were distributed.

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I don't recall receiving hot towels. At one point I went to the WC before the start of service so I might have missed it. Menus were then distributed and the flight attendant set a copy between the armrests and advised passengers to share it. This was something that I have never encountered before - perhaps another cost cutting measure of the new AA?

Menu.




Wine.

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Orders were taken and the flight attendant acknowledged my pre-order of crab cakes. She also inquired about beverages and I asked for my usual 1/2 orange and 1/2 cranberry juice. Instead of having my drink mixed she gave me a can of cranapple juice with half a glass of orange juice along with warm nuts. It seemed odd that she did not mix it up.

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Linens were placed on the tables and the appetizer plate with salad was delivered to each passenger. An assortment of warm breads (sourdough or wheat) was offered.

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Char Siu duck with pickled vegetables and yuzu marmalade.

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Salad with strawberries and palm hearts served with apple vinaigrette.

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Crab cakes with jicama slaw and tomatillo poblano cream sauce. I thought that the main dish was satisfying. However, the cakes did not seem to fit quite right in its vessel.

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Service was not soliciting and one had to ask for things. For example, there was never an offer to fill my beverage or bring a new drink once my glass was near empty. In addition, my seatmate had a problem with his tablet and I thought that the interaction with the flight attendant was somewhat curt. That is not to say that the crew was abysmal, just not as polished and caring as could have been.

After the meal service there was a choice between a cheese plate or made to order ice cream sundae. I opted for the cheese which was well presented and nicely portioned. Apparently dessert was not provisioned as generously as before because I asked for ice cream in addition to the cheese plate and the flight attendant apologized saying that they ran out of them. Also, my seatmate decided to eat at a later time and when he requested a cheese plate, he was given one from the "buy on board" in Y but was given a set of metal utensils.

Cheese plate.

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Finally the meal concluded with the distribution of individual bottles of water.

At about 1 hr. before arrival, freshly baked chocolate chip cookies were offered from a tray. There were no plates underneath and no drinks to go along with it. While I visited the WC, a basket of snacks and fruits were placed in the galley, but these were never passed around to passengers in the cabin.

Freshly baked chocolate chip cookie.

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Galley snacks.

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See more

Verdict

American Airlines

7.5/10
Cabin7.0
Cabin crew6.5
Entertainment/wifi9.0
Meal/catering7.5

American Airlines Admirals Club (Concourse D)

6.8/10
Comfort7.0
Meal/catering7.0
Entertainment/wifi6.0
Services7.0

Miami - MIA

8.4/10
Efficiency8.5
Access8.0
Services8.0
Cleanliness9.0

Los Angeles - LAX

10.0/10
Efficiency10.0
Access10.0
Services10.0
Cleanliness10.0

Conclusion

It was disappointing to encounter an equipment change at the last minute, but these things happen and since AA dominates the MIA-LAX market with the most nonstop flights, it can afford to make these changes with its captive audience. I can understand the disappointment from going from an individual lie flat seat with aisle access to an angled one next to a neighbor.

Service could have been more caring and engaging. I felt that the crew was robotic and just did what they were required to do. The little details and touches make a big difference and unfortunately in this case they were lacking.

The catering was fine and I personally enjoyed the appetizer and crab cakes, but when I saw my neighbor's portion and it seemed a bit burned, I was thankful that I received one of the good ones. In the past (old AA) it was never a problem to request both a cheese plate and ice cream together. The lack of full provision for dessert is disappointing from a customer's perspective.

We arrived a few minutes earlier at 14:41.

Information on the route Miami (MIA) Los Angeles (LAX)

13 Comments

  • Comment 162523 by
    K2World 1885 Comments

    Thank you for the report Adan
    Too bad for the equipment swap but hopefully this was a day flight !
    The duck seems good, didn't fancy the ice cream ? ^^
    The crew could have done a better job !

    • Comment 346329 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2295 Comments

      Hi Kevin.

      As you said, it's a good thing that this was a day flight.

      The duck appetizer was better than what is served on some international flights in J. Go figure.

      I think that the cheese plate should be a separate course followed by dessert. ;) I wanted both but life is unfair.

      Crew could have been better, especially on a premium transcon route.

      Thank you for your comments.

  • Comment 162554 by
    SMilano 1292 Comments

    Thanks Adan for the report.
    So bad for the swap...
    But you still had a good flight hopefully
    That's sad that you can't choose anymore both a cheese plate and ice cream together. Result of the costs cut unfortunately I presume?

  • Comment 162578 by
    JeanphiL 44 Comments

    Thanks Adan !,
    Nice flight with AA, good quality be part of the old seat.
    The Admiral Club was empty so it was easier to enjoy the lounge.
    Crew a little bit disappointing but its an Domestic flight in America...
    Again,

    Thank you.

  • Comment 162586 by
    lagentsecret GOLD 11769 Comments

    Thanks for sharing this FR

    Better not talking about the lounge food offer ;)

    An old cabin and an average crew were not a good start

    The catering seems to be decent even with strawberries in the salad lol

    See you soon for the last leg

    • Comment 346332 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2295 Comments

      Salut Gilbert.

      Better not talking about the lounge food offer ;)
      - But it's been improving and now we have 2 types of hot soup and a salad in addition to the cheese cubes and crudites. :P

      An old cabin and an average crew were not a good start
      - No, changing the plane twice was not a good start. It went from old cabin to new and then old at the last minute. Talk about an emotional roller coast. ;)

      The catering seems to be decent even with strawberries in the salad lol
      - I am not particularly fond of strawberries in my salad but the hearts of palm were nice. The duck and crab cakes were worthy of a premium cabin.

      Wait until you see my tour of the Oneworld lounge @ LAX. ;)

  • Comment 162632 by
    socalnow GOLD 980 Comments

    Greetings Jetsetpanda and thanks for this look at an AA premium transcon experience.

    I paid a quick visit to the Admirals Club and this particular one was under renovation, so most guests sat outside in the al fresco section.
    -The transitional lounge is a pretty clever workaround for the renovation process. There is still the basic food and the space is well lit with the windows.

    I could sympathize with his predicament up to the point when he emphasized his importance as an elite passenger and proceeded to have a meltdown in front of everybody.
    -I just can't understand this type of behavior. Have the airlines created this monster or is just society writ large and a generation of very poor parenting? It's odious.

    It's difficult to believe that this cabin is what passed for international J on AA until the recent push to catch up with the competition. Now, for a daytime transcon it's rather nice. I'm not a fan of the tablets.

    Menus were then distributed and the flight attendant set a copy between the armrests and advised passengers to share it.
    -Maybe the menus were provisioned for the other config 767 and it has fewer seats? Anyway it's a sharp looking menu and the catering seems quite good for this flight.

    Crab cakes with jicama slaw and tomatillo poblano cream sauce.
    -That reads and looks interesting/tasty!

    With regards to the crew, remember, if they're not actively rude and put out by your presence then it's good service!

    Thanks again for the report and happy flying.

  • Comment 349222 by
    paccalof 37 Comments

    NIce report Adan! I think AA have this kind of service, if you have lucky the crew is nice and attentive, but if not you will dont have a nothing special about the "new american" concept.
    I was surprised the B763 with the "old" cabin, i thought all airplanes was retrofited and the ameninty kit is the old one, in March they said start to use the new one, the K Cold or something like this, right?
    Im flying in a few days in AA, i will check this too.
    Congrats about the report.

    • Comment 349275 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2295 Comments

      Hola paccalof y bienvenido!

      Well, not all 763's are retrofitted as we can see from my experience. There were a few upset people with the cabin switch but since AA has such a strong hub @ MIA I think they can get away things like these. As far as the amenity kits they are just getting rid of all the surplus before using the new ones (Cole Haan) .

      I will look forward to your FR. Thanks for leaving your comments.

      Saludos.

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