American’s incoming President discusses Product Alignment and Milestones

Scott Kirby is currently President of US Airways and is slated to become President of American after the merger.

He recently gave an interview to reporter Jonathan Spira with Frequent Business Traveler and discussed a range of topics including milestones, and alignment of product.

The alignment of product strategy and road map is probably the topic that will most interest AA and US travelers in that it will visibly effect the level of in-flight service offered to passengers.

You’ll be relieved to know that the merged carrier will largely adopt American’s service levels.   From the article:

January 7 will be “a big day for us,” Kirby told Frequent Business Traveler in an interview earlier this month. “We will become a single airline or at least take the first step of becoming a single airline [on that day, and] offer reciprocal frequent flyer benefits,” he added.

American and US will slowly begin to align their product offerings, including meals, in-flight entertainment, and seating. The merged airline will use the current American product as its template and, as a result, the current US Airways product will be greatly enhanced to ensure uniformity across both airlines until they are merged under one operating certificate.

There are two additional key dates later in the year, according to people familiar with the matter. On April 1, US Airways will adopt American’s meal windows and catering, and on September 1, the US Airways soft product (i.e. in-flight service) will mirror American’s.

Anyway, it’s an interesting interview and touches on a few other topics such as management team appointments, and cultural differences.

Go here to read the rest of Jonathan Spira’s report – American Airlines: Challenges Ahead Include Merging Systems, Changing Alliances, and Aligning In-Flight Service.

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