The airline with the best average rating is American Airlines with 7.2/10.
The average flight time is 5 hours and 31 minutes.More information
Report No: 2020-704E
Ladies and Gentlemen,
This report would contain a flight review of one of American's Flagship domestic routes, Miami to Los Angeles, onboard the 777-300ER in Main Cabin Extra. In this flight, I was lucky to get a Premium Economy seat for free and I was able to experience the Admirals Club in Miami as well.
During my travel date, American had 5 daily MIA-LAX flights, one of them was the Flagship service with the 777-300ER and the 4 others with a mixture of 737-800 & A321's.
Here is the routing
The following parts of this series would be revealed later on;
Loads for this flight
Flagship First: %10-15
Flagship Business: %70-75
Main Cabin: %40-45
This alert was available before I started checking-in online.
Thanks to my Expertflyer membership, I have created a seat alert for Premium Economy window-aisle seats and as soon a double of them got empty, I selected 18J and 18K. Also an anecdote that, American had blocked row 16 and other emergency exit rows to protect their crew as there are crew jumpseats in front of those rows.
And here is the confirmation of OLCI
The next morning, I've spotted our aircraft which over Europe at that time.
About 2 hours before the flight, me and my travel companion were driving to the rental car drop off point.
At that time, some AA aircraft were visible from the road
After dropping the car, we both used the MiaMover to access the terminal as the rental car center is not near the terminal
Here is an idea about the operation of the MiaMover
The MiaMover was empty and we were the only one in our car during the 5 minute ride to the terminal.
And I was able to spot some AA aircraft during the ride
Low D gates
After arriving to the terminal, I've walked to the Priority check-in desks to drop bags and I realized that the Flagship First counters were closed. In normal circumstances, non-AA oneworld Emerald members could use the Flagship First check-in desks.
However, the priority desks were open with a couple of agents serving passengers. The wait over there was about 5 minutes and after then we were served.
Later on, we've headed to the regular security checkpoint as the priority checkpoint was closed during our visit at MIA.
And after a wait of 5 minutes at security, it was time to head to the lounge.
Most of the airport vendors were closed, however, some were open.
Luckily the lounge was across our gate so we had 10-15 minutes to spend there.
However, the bad news was that the signs of the Flagship Lounge was covered with black tape so this meant that we would be using the Admirals Club.
After entering the lounge, we were welcomed by the front desk downstairs and after taking up the elevator, we were greeted by another AA staff that told us that we are not allowed to leave our seats during our visit except for visiting the restrooms. In my previous report, at DCA, the system was different as passengers were allowed to take a walk within the club but they could only sat at the same place as they did previously.
Shortly after we took our seats, one of the lounge staff took our drink orders and handed in our food bags. As you might know from my previous report, AA temporarily suspended the premium drink allowance of non-AA oneworld Sapphire and Emerald members so only soft drinks, house beer and house wine was free of charge.
For all other premium drinks in this menu, you would need to present a credit card to the server.
And here is the food box: Chips & Guac, a lemon cookie and some sweets.
And here is a view of our aircraft which was visible from the club. N726AN would be the aircraft that would take me to LA.
While leaving the lounge, I have realized that the children's area was closed to service, however, there were magazines that were still available to read.
The gate area was crowded before boarding
Another shot of N726AN
FIDS - As you might realize from the FIDS, AA is the only carrier operating direct service from Miami to Los Angeles
While I was boarding the aircraft, all passengers up to Group 4 were invited to board. American Airlines is one of the rare carriers that does not board from back to front during post-COVID, instead they are maintaining their original boarding process.
After being welcomed by the crew at the aircraft door, I've headed to my seat 18L which was the last row of the Premium Economy cabin.
The American Airlines Premium Economy seat has great legroom compared to the Main Cabin seats and the seats are obviously wider. Unlike Delta and United, American does not market these seats as a separate class so passengers eligible for Main Cabin Extra could select these seats for free.
The seat has an IFE screen
As well as a remote
A power outlet and a USB port
And in the seat pocket there was something rare that you could see, besides the safety card, there was the American Way magazine available at every seat; though, the Spanish version of the magazine, Nexus was not available.
And it was time to wander around the pages of the magazine, starting with the fleet page
Maps of MIA & LAX
It was my first time seeing this ad as this was my first oneworld flight after COVID that had an inflight-magazine
American destinations within the US
And here is the IFE screen
For the majority of the flight that the air flight time was 4h28mins, the route map was open in my screen.
And, it was interesting to see personal AC units at the top as most airlines do not install these on their wide-bodies.
A view from the window
And after boarding was completed, there was an announcement made that the flight was delayed for 15 minutes because of the delay of paperwork arriving at the cockpit. At that time a cabin crew was verifying if passengers seated in the Premium Economy seats did not upgrade themselves as there was an issue with another passenger that was solved quickly.
And later on, single-use earphones were distributed
And it was time to push-back
At that time, the safety video was playing in English and then it was repeated in Spanish as well.
And we took off about 15-20 minutes later than our scheduled departure time.
Some photos from our takeoff
A last shot of MIA
And a gallery of some other photos that was taken after takeoff
And after taking off the usual welcome announcement video was played from the personal screens.
The flight also had Wi-Fi supported by Panasonic, and here were the prices for our flight. During this flight, personal mobile entertainment did not work and passengers who were willing to watch a movie or TV show should have done it via the IFE screens.
Shortly later, the beverage service had started with a full selection of soft drinks, coffee and tea. I've opted for an apple juice which was served with pretzels and Biscoff cookies. This was the only service made throughout the flight
Shortly later, I visited one of the lavatories which were clean at the time I visited
And flight information at that time
Shortly later, I took a nap and when I woke up I had enjoyed the chips&guac that were handed to me at the club. Also, the cabin crew was constantly touring the cabin to collect trash.
And flight information
A photo over eastern California
And the seatbelt signs were turned on and the cabin crew did a final run of trash collection.
A photo before landing
The new SoFi stadium
And we've landed at one of the southern runways at LAX
TBIT which mostly had Asian carriers at that time including Asiana, Cathay Pacific, China Airlines and Philippines Airlines aircraft
And AA aircraft was present at T4
An AA A321
And another one with a special livery
More AA aircraft
The closed Flagship Lounge at LAX. We were going to park at gate 41 that day.
And interestingly the TV's in the closed Flagship Lounge were open.
And we were parking next to this A321.
And a final glimpse at aircraft at TBIT
After saying goodbye to the crew, I left the aircraft and headed to the baggage carousel and after a wait of 20 minutes at the carousel bags arrived with the respect of priority tags.
Also for those who wonder, there was no row by row deboarding at this flight and deboarding the aircraft was done in the usual pre-COVID way.
And later on, it was time to leave LAX
This report has come to an end.
This series would continue with the next report.
Thanks for reading and hope to see you in another report.
Overall, it was nice to try the American Airlines Premium Economy seats that I was supposed to try in April in the LHR-JFK route. The Premium Economy seat product is superior to the regular MCE product and I enjoyed flying on them. The rest of the flight experience was similar to pre-COVID, no Buy-On-Board, no free alcohol for MCE and that are all. The usual beverage service ( including coffee and tea ) was done with pretzels and biscoff cookies, no hand sanitizers or disinfectant wipes were distributed, the in-flight magazine still available. The IFE system onboard was working pretty fast, however, the personal entertainment option was not available for this flight and Wi-Fi was not that cheap for this flight. Toilets were surprisingly clean throughout my visit as usually when flying AA, I am used to dirty lavatories. The experience in MIA was standard with the option of checking through an agent, however, the priority lane was closed so I had waited in the regular lane for about 10 minutes. The club in MIA was a standard post-COVID AA Club experience, although still no premium drinks are served for free for oneworld elites and in the club in MIA, passengers are not allowed to leave their seats unless they are leaving the club or going to the restrooms. Boarding was made in the usual sequence with group numbers and priorities being respected. The experience in LAX was not that great as waiting for baggage 15-20 minutes is not the greatest experience, however, LAX was empty as I have never seen before.
More American Airlines reports would come within the remainder of this year.
(+) Reasonable wait for check-in and security
(+) Boarding was made in respect to the group numbers and priorities
(-) No priority checkpoint available for security
AA Admirals Club D30
(+) Comfortable seating
(+) Friendly server at the club
(-) The offering bag could be improved
(-) The removal of the premium drinks for non-AA OWS and OWE passengers
(+) Comfortable seats, great width, and great recline compared to a domestic MCE seat
(+) IFE options although the mobile personal entertainment system was not working.
(+) Crew was friendly towards passengers
(+) The lavatory was clean during my visit
(+) Trash was collected during the flight by the crew
(-) No food available except snacks
(+) Surprisingly no traffic within the terminal roads
(-) Long wait for baggage