American’s new Airbus A321-Transcontinental service between JFK and LAX is scheduled to start January 7, 2014, but beginning this weekend you’ll be able to purchase ticket for the inaugural flights!
A321-T flight will be available for booking this Sunday, August 11!
According to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, “9% of American’s passengers on the JFK-LAX route paid more than $1,000 for their ticket”.
That’s probably why American will continue to be the only airline to offer a 3 class configuration on transcontinental routes, and it’s also explains why American’s narrowbody A321-T will nearly rival their new flagship Boeing 777-300ER widebody in amenities.
And while American’s A321-T may not portend a return of AA’s transcontinental Piano Bar, these new planes are going to be impressively configured:
• The First Class cabin will be outfitted with 10 fully lie-flat seats in a 1-1 configuration giving every seat direct aisle access – a feature that no other domestic airline offers.
• The Business Class cabin will be outfitted with 20 fully lie-flat seats, designed by BE, in a 2-2 configuration.
• In the Main Cabin, the seats will be designed by Recaro and arranged in a 3-3 configuration. The option to enjoy more legroom is available with 36 Main Cabin Extra seats and the aircraft also offers 36 Main Cabin seats.
• American plans to outfit the entire aircraft with seat-to-seat chat; live text news and weather updates, 3-D moving maps, airport maps, connecting gate information, and more.
• For customers traveling in the premium class cabins, a complimentary inflight entertainment selection of up to 75 movies, more than 150 TV programs, more than 350 audio selections and up to 15 games will be available on a 15.4-inch HD-capable touchscreen monitor positioned in each seat. Bose QuietComfort 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling headsets will be available.
• In Main Cabin every seatback will have an 8.9-inch HD-capable touchscreen monitor with an assortment of movies, TV programs, games and audio selections.
The A321-Ts will initially operate two daily departures between JFK and LAX beginning Jan. 7, and will offer an additional three daily departures beginning Jan. 15, increasing to six daily departures Jan. 31. Service between JFK and SFO will begin later in 2014.
Back when American announced their A321-T plans it left the other airlines scrambling to upgrade their own transcon offerings, even JetBlue is getting into the competition (Seth wrote a great post the other day about the looming transcontinental air battle between the carriers that includes a side by side comparison of the each carriers plans).
American has the largest share of the market and with Flagship Check-In, hourly service, new planes, upgraded food service, Wi-Fi, more inflight entertainment options, and a 3 class configuration, they plan to keep it that way.
I’ve mentioned before that American’s transcontinental flights and Flagship Service make JFK/LAX and JFK/SFO my favorite domestic routes. I can’t wait for the new planes!!