Why I’m Going To Pre-Order Meals on American Airlines From Now On

by on May 17, 2013 · 16 comments

in American

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Back in February, American Airlines officially launched the ability for first and business class passengers to pre-reserve your meal before a flight. No more running out of that sandwich you want or the cheese plate before the flight attendants get to you.

Screen shot 2013-05-15 at 6.37.07 PM

The option was first only available on American Airlines marketed and operated flights within the continental U.S., and to/from Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean but now business and first class passengers can order them on American flights between the U.S., Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, Central and South America, Asia and Europe. Requests may be made 30 days prior to travel and all orders must be completed at least 24 hours before departure. To order your meal, you must already have a ticket, and then go to My Trips to see the menu for your flight and make your selections.

To be honest, although it’s always a pleasant surprise to have a nice meal on a flight, the food isn’t the main reason I fly a particular airline over another and I don’t often think to choose my meal ahead of time on domestic flights.

However, while flying American from Miami to New York recently, the flight attendants in the business class cabin ran out of one of the entrees so by the time they got to my row the only choice left was this less-than-appetizing bowl of tortellini swimming in some kind of creamy sauce.

If only I'd pre-ordered, I wouldn't have gotten stuck with this!

If only I’d pre-ordered, I wouldn’t have gotten stuck with this!

If only I’d ordered the chicken breast ahead of time, I wouldn’t have had to make up for these carbs in the gym the next day!

Oh well, next time I fly American and the option is available I’m definitely going to have a look through my menu options and choose ahead of time so that I don’t get stuck with a meal I don’t want. Now if only the airline (and others) would expand the option to their economy passengers as well, that would be great. Although it might be a pain to implement, I actually think it would cut down on wasted meals and help the airlines streamline how they stock their premium cabin meals.

Have any of you pre-ordered a meal with American yet? How was your experience?

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • Harlan Vaughn

    Ordering tomorrow! Will let ya know how it goes.

  • jimL travels

    I have preordered my meals on most of the flights on AA now. They have gotten it right each and every time so far. The attendants said they like it as well and the reaction has been positive from passengers has been the flight attendents comments. I no longer have to worry about FEBO, so it is easier from that perspective. I don’t like the tortellini either.

  • DanaDNYUK

    Pre-ordered for our flight to the UK on Monday evening. Was great – as I got the filet even being in the last row of business class. Combined it with dine on demand, and was able to maximize my sleeping time.

  • theblakefish

    They DO offer it on int’l flights…had it MIA-GIG and DFW-GIG last month…

  • Steven

    AA needs to stop offering the unhealthy crap, like pasta, cream, etc on their flights. Same happened in Business on my way to London. Row 12H, ran out of chicken AND fish. Who wants steak and pasta at 11pm EST, flight 38.

    Live healthier. Figure it out now.

  • Carl

    My UA flight to IAH last night from HNL, which is a premium business product, they only had beef, there were no other choices, just one entree for everyone. Just cannot comprehend in this day and age why it so difficult for an airline to offer its premium passengers the ability to go online and order what they want to eat from the available catering choices.

  • W Brian Duncan (aka IPBrian)

    I just went to do this for a flight from DFW-MIA and visa versa…sadly no vegetarian options. I hate that AA doesn’t bother to stock anything I eat. BOO!

  • guesty

    Leaving a great food city in Miami and headed to the greatest food cities in the world, NYC. Airtime: 3hrs. Why even bother with the preservative filled tasteless airline offerings? When popping across the Atlantic or longer, sure. But for only 3hrs I’m going to do my best to AVOID any of that garbage entering my body.

  • Allan Klein

    Sit closer to the front of the plane so they don’t run out of options. Problem solved.

  • Junodee

    We did preorder in AA 1st on a 10 pm flight from LIH to LAX in March. Nice service in that the flight was short, we went right to sleep and didn’t need to be woken up for a breakfast order. Only two options though and I agree with the other comments about quality.

  • FullMoon

    Love the pre-ordered antipasto options on Delta transcons–available even to the back of the bus.

  • Kristen Arland

    We took the kids from ORD to STT via MIA in March and all 4 of us pre-ordered. On the way down they didn’t even ask us about it and when DH asked them about it, they told him they didn’t get a list of who pre-ordered. So on our way home he made sure to mention that we pre-ordered since 2 of us have dietary issues and couldn’t eat the other meal.

    Sitting at the front of the plane doesn’t ensure you get a choice in meal. They start at the back for some flights–I can’t remember if it’s even or odd. What’s really annoying about not picking your meal is if you have dietary constraints and they run out you can be left without a meal. And even pre-ordering doesn’t always help. Look at our trip in March. We were lucky on that one. But a year ago, we went to London and we made sure to put in our itinerary that I was gluten free and needed a GF meal. On the way there they screwed it up and I didn’t get a meal at all. I was lucky that I had packed a couple of emergency GF protein bars, but it was a really rotten situation–especially because DH contacted the ExecPlat desk several times before we left and each time they told him I was all set. On the way over the flight attendants were super nice and took notes about it and entered it into the system so that on the return flight I would be ok. And DH again contacted the ExecPlat desk about it and was again told I would have a meal on the way home. And once again I was screwed and didn’t have anything to eat but some m&ms I brought with me.

  • Christine Alonso

    Aw, I love that creamy tortellini thing!

  • Cynthia Drescher

    I preordered last week on AA for LGA-DFW (oatmeal & berries for breakfast) and DFW-ICN. Got the bibimbap and udon on the last one, and the Seoul route offers around 5 entree choices for the main dinner, not including special dietary meals. Worked very well.

  • DTW

    Wanted to post the same. The food in the picture looks like something I was served in the middle school. Never understood the obsession some people have with dining in first. Champagne sure, disgusting cafeteria food no thanks

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