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One of the developments I am most excited for in 2014 is the increasing availability of new lie-flat seating on the busy transcontinental routes between New York and the West Coast that I, and a lot of other business travelers, tend to fly the most. Today we reach another milestone in that transcontinental route competition as American finally puts its first new-generation A321 into service between JFK and Los Angeles with service between JFK and San Francisco coming in March.
Though I won’t be on the inaugural flight today, I’m planning on testing out the new product later this month when I fly from Los Angeles to New York. Here’s what has me so excited:
The new A321T’s have 10 fully lie-flat seats in a 1 x 1 configuration in first class. Business Class will have 20 lie-flat seats in a 2 x 2 configuration, while the Main Cabin will be 3 x 3 with 36 Main Cabin Extra seats. The entertainment systems on these aircraft will also have seat-to-seat chat, live text news and weather updates, 3-D moving maps, airport maps and connecting gate information. Travelers in premium classes will have access to free entertainment on the 15.4-inch screens, and Bose headsets.
Among the amenities aboard these new planes, American is offering in-flight entertainment in every seat, WiFi, USB and A/C power outlet, iPod connectivity and even digital chat rooms. The airline is rolling out new food and beverage options on all its transcontinental routes in First and Business Class cabins aboard the A321T’s, 757 and 767-200 aircraft with a selection of new appetizers, salads, entrées, desserts, and selections for brunch, dinner and overnight travel. First and Business Class customers traveling domestically also now have the choice to reserve an entrée in advance of their flight, so no running out of the filet mignon before the food cart gets to you!
American will begin offering five daily flights on the new aircraft beginning January 15, and six daily flights beginning January 31 then add an additional daily flight on April 1. By May 8, all JFK-LAX service will be aboard the A321T with a total of 13 daily flights by the summer of 2014.
San Francisco flyers will see the new plane starting March 6, with two of the four daily flights operated on the new aircraft and by June 11, all five daily flights between the two cities in either direction will be on the new aircraft.
Though it’ll be a couple weeks before I fly the new plane myself, I’m going to be holding an awesome Thursday Giveaway this week where one lucky winner might just be able to come along with me for the ride, so be sure to check back later this week!
And remember, if you plan to fly this route, American is offering up to 15,000 bonus miles for roundtrip travel between New York and Los Angeles from January 7-March 31, 2014. The bonuses range from 5,000 miles to 15,000 miles depending on which cabin class and fare you book, see the table below for the full breakdown. One way tickets are eligible for half the bonus.
To get the bonus miles to your AAdvantage account, click here to register and use the code: TR15K. You can now book a seat for travel beginning January 7, 2014, just look for “32B” listed as the aircraft type.
Here are the full terms and conditions:
- AAdvantage bonus mile offer is valid for round-trip travel on American Airlines marketed and operated nonstop flights between New York (JFK) and Los Angeles from January 7, 2014, through March 31, 2014.
- Half the bonus shown will be awarded for one-way travel.
- Offer applies only to AAdvantage members who purchase and fly on eligible published fare tickets (excludes fares beginning with O and Q). Bonus miles will be awarded based on the booking class purchased.
- Registration prior to travel is required
For more information on transcontinental travel, American Airlines and the new A321 fleet, see my previous posts below:
A Sneak Peak At The American Airlines A321 Transcontinental Interior While this premium card has one of the highest annual fees on the market, it has several valuable perks that could make it worthwhile, depending on your travel patterns. These include a $200 annual airline rebate, lounge access, free Hilton Gold status and free Starwood Preferred Guest Gold status.
The Transcontinental Route Competition Heats Up
A New Age of Transcontinental Travel Begins – My First Lie-Flat Experience on United JFK-LAX
Maximize Monday: Transcontinental Comparison: Worth It To Switch To JetBlue?
Top 10 Airline Products I Can’t Wait To Fly
Transcontinental Series: American Airlines
Transcontinental Series: Delta
Transcontinental Series: United
Transcontinental Series: Virgin America
Transcontinental Series: JetBlue
JetBlue Pricing Details On New Mint Transcontinental Premium Cabin
While this premium card has one of the highest annual fees on the market, it has several valuable perks that could make it worthwhile, depending on your travel patterns. These include a $200 annual airline rebate, lounge access, free Hilton Gold status and free Starwood Preferred Guest Gold status.