American Airlines announced some significant enhancements to their lounge offering today! Here’s what you need to know:
- Flagship Dining – American announced pre-flight full-service tableside dining in the following airports: New York (JFK), Dallas/Ft. Worth (DFW), Los Angeles (LAX), and Miami (MIA). Basically, anywhere American flies the 777-300ER out of will have Flagship Dining. The new offering will roll out first at JFK in early 2017. You’ve previously seen my review of the Flagship Dining room at DFW’s Terminal D Admiral’s Club. What American announced today is much different. The Flagship Dining room at DFW is more of a light-bite offering while their new offering will be full-service with seasonal menus assembled by local executive chefs.
- Renovated Flagship Lounges – The existing Flagship Lounges at JFK, LAX, and ORD will be renovated with “more expansive spaces, more modern furnishings and access for more premium customers.” Those who have visited a Flagship Lounge recently will probably agree with me that the renovation is highly-anticipated and greatly needed.
- New Flagship Lounges – There will be new Flagship Lounges joining the fleet! American announced Flagship Lounges at DFW, MIA, and Philadelphia International Airport (PHL).
- New Admirals Clubs – American will be adding Admirals Club locations at Houston’s Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) and Orlando International Airport (MCO)
American web portal for the lounge updates is here.
Flagship Dining is huge!
American Airlines will be the first US carrier to offer a pre-flight full tableside service meal offering before international flights. Things like this are common at some of the nicer airport lounges in the world (like Cathay Pacific’s The Pier at HKG) and, having experienced it myself, it’s a very nice touch. The key here will be execution, if American nails the menu and provides a good quality of service then I think this is something United and Delta will be scrambling to attempt as well.
New Flagship lounges were sorely needed
American has long needed to step up its premium service game at two hubs in particular: DFW and MIA. Particularly since American Express debuted their Centurion Lounges American has taken it on the chin a few times. Introducing Flagship lounges at these locations is critical and needed.
What all of this really means
American is posting record profits at the moment. It’s fantastic to see American investing those profits into the customer experience to the tune of $3 billion. Now that the merger is complete it’s important that American redoubles its focus on the customer, and it appears they’re doing just that.