American Airlines Just Flew Its Last Widebody Flight With Angle-Flat Business Class Seats

Oct 30, 2017

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

The transformation of American Airlines’ business class product reached an important — although perhaps long overdue — milestone Sunday night. At 8:39pm Central, American Airlines flight number 1236 from Miami (MIA) to Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) landed as the last American Airlines widebody flight with angle-flat business class seats.

Now, whether it’s a transatlantic flight or to Hawaii, American Airlines passengers won’t have to dread the all-too-familiar last-minute equipment swap from a 1-2-1 lie-flat 767 to a 2-2-2 angle-flat business class product.

AA207 DFW-MIA last 767 angle-flat

The last angle-flat widebody aircraft in American Airlines’ fleet was a 25-year old Boeing 767-300ER with the registration N373AA. The aircraft will be ferried to the desert in Roswell, New Mexico, on Monday as American Airlines flight 9709. This last flight will be the 16,357 flight cycle recorded by this aircraft, which is just shy of 100,000 flight hours since being delivered brand new to American Airlines in June 1992.

Although a flight from MIA to DFW in angle-flat business class seats isn’t bad, this same aircraft was used last week on transatlantic flights from New York’s JFK to Milan (MXP), Rome (FCO) and Paris (CDG).N373AA angle-flat long-hauls

Earlier this summer, AA retrofit its last 777-200 to replace the angle-flat seats with top-notch B/E Aerospace Super Diamond seats. (Unfortunately, AA isn’t ripping out the Zodiac seats — known as “Coffin Class” — installed on a subfleet of its 777-200s).

Now, AA fliers can just complain about the quality of their lie-flat business class seat rather than being stuck in an angle-flat seat.
Now, AA fliers can just complain about the quality of their lie-flat business class seat rather than being stuck in an angle-flat seat.

This means that all AA widebody aircraft now have lie-flat business class seats. That includes all Boeing 767-300, 777-200, 777-300ER, 787-8 and 787-9, as well as Airbus A330-200 and A330-300.

The last American Airlines long-haul aircraft that still sport angle-flat seats are 757-200s. Nine of these aircraft will be retired by the end of the year. 24 of these have already been retrofit with lie-flat B/E Aerospace Diamond seats. These lie-flat seats are designated for use on transatlantic flights. Another 12 AA 757-200s will have recliner Zodiac 6850 seats and will be designated for domestic and Hawaii service.

Unfortunately, not all 757s will end up with these lie-flat seats. Image by American Airlines.
Unfortunately, not all 757s will be retrofitted with these lie-flat seats. Image by American Airlines.

What does this mean for points & miles collectors? Well, American Airlines business class flights are going to be a lot more consistent. While there’s still a big range in quality between American Airlines business class seats, at least all of them will be lie-flat. If you can find award availability on American Airlines (which is supposed to be getting better), you can rest assured that its going to mean a flat bed.

How does this compare to the competition? Delta still has some recliner-style business class seats on its 767-300s, but these are limited to domestic flights. While still flying 2-4-2 arranged business class cabins across oceans, at least United has had lie-flat business class seats across its widebody fleet for years. So, this lie-flat milestone for American Airlines can be seen as long overdue.

What do you think about this American Airlines’ milestone?

2018 TPG Award Winner: Mid-Tier Card of the Year
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
17.74% - 24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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.