How to Fly American’s Best Business Class Seats Domestically in March and April

Feb 17, 2018

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American Airlines is in the process of revolutionizing its fleet — both in good ways and bad  — and that means its planes can still be frustratingly inconsistent, especially on US domestic routes. Some long domestic routes will lack power or in-flight entertainment, even in first class. Meanwhile, you can find lie-flat seats sold as economy on one-hour flights. If you’ve got some flexibility in your travels, knowing American Airlines’ fleet schedule can mean getting a superior experience.

Problem is, AA’s schedule can vary from month to month. So, we at The Points Guy dig into it to unveil where you can find these excellent seats.

Whether you splurge on a first class award or paid ticket, get a free upgrade using 500-mile upgrades or get a complimentary upgrade as an Executive Platinum member, here are the ways to fly on American Airlines’ best business class seats without having to bring your passport.

If you’re looking to score one of these seats in February, here’s that schedule.

777-200: B/E Aerospace Super Diamond or Zodiac

American Airlines has three versions of the 777-200 in its fleet — some with “rocking” Zodiac seats and others with new B/E Aerospace Super Diamond seats. All but 13 of these have been retrofit with premium economy. These can be frustrating to try to tell apart. And, even if you do book a particular version, equipment changes means there’s no telling which type will show up at your gate.

However, all three versions have some form of lie-flat business class seat. So, looking for 777-200s on domestic routes is sure to provide a better-than-average first class experience. Here are the routes on which AA is using these aircraft:

From To Flight # Depart Arrive Starting Ending Frequency
DFW MIA 2791 17:05 20:45 1-Mar 3-Mar Daily
DFW MIA 1289 17:05 20:45 4-Mar 2-Apr Daily
DFW MIA 222 15:55 19:40 2-Apr 23-Apr Daily
DFW MIA 1294 16:55 20:43 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
JFK DFW 1223 14:55 17:55 3-Apr 3-Apr One-off
LAX MIA 225 7:45 15:36 1-Mar 25-Mar Daily
MIA DFW 969 11:00 13:25 1-Mar 2-Apr Daily
MIA DFW 2808 9:10 11:24 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
MIA DFW 222 10:15 12:27 4-Apr 4-Apr One-off
MIA DFW 222 10:15 12:27 25-Apr 25-Apr One-off
MIA LAX 270 17:25 20:23 1-Mar 3-Mar Daily
MIA LAX 275 17:30 20:28 4-Mar 24-Mar Daily

787-9 B/E Aerospace Super Diamond

While American Airlines mostly keeps its efficient 787-9 Dreamliners on international routes, periodically the airline will have to position these aircraft between hubs due to scheduling needs. This opens up a golden opportunity to try AA’s newest business class seat out for yourself.

For March-April, you’ll find these three-cabin (economy, premium economy, business) aircraft flying domestic routes between Dallas (DFW) and Los Angeles (LAX) and Chicago (ORD):

From To Flight # Depart Arrive Starting Ending Frequency
DFW LAX 2489 18:42 20:14 1-Mar 2-Apr Daily
DFW LAX 2649 20:30 22:02 24-Mar 24-Mar One-off
DFW LAX 1281 18:55 20:23 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
DFW ORD 1233 12:35 14:52 1-Mar 24-Mar Daily
LAX DFW 2459 8:20 13:27 1-Mar 23-Mar Daily
LAX DFW 2459 14:10 19:18 25-Mar 30-Apr Daily
ORD DFW 2349 16:55 19:26 1-Mar 24-Mar Daily

Upgrade didn’t clear? Or, don’t want to pay for first class? AA has made the decision to not sell premium economy on domestic routes (except to Hawaii), so the premium economy seats found on these aircraft are sold as part of the economy cabin. However, these seats are labeled as Main Cabin Extra, so you’ll need AA elite status to choose these for free.

A330 Envoy Suite

While not the newest business class seat in the fleet, the legacy US Airlines A330s are a solid business class product — and certainly more than sufficient for a domestic flight.

Here’s where to find these domestically:

From To Flight # Depart Arrive Starting Ending Frequency
CLT MCO 581 14:37 16:19 2-Mar 2-Mar One-off
CLT MCO 1870 17:54 19:39 28-Apr 28-Apr One-off
CLT PHL 559 16:35 18:23 1-Mar 2-Apr Daily
CLT PHL 1798 20:24 22:04 2-Apr 2-Apr One-off
CLT PHX 692 7:30 10:27 1-Mar 10-Mar Daily
CLT PHX 692 7:34 9:25 11-Mar 2-Apr Daily
LAX PHL 670 8:15 16:34 25-Mar 2-Apr Daily
LAX PHL 2083 8:25 16:54 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
MCO CLT 1739 11:49 13:37 2-Mar 2-Mar One-off
MCO CLT 1725 10:23 12:10 29-Apr 29-Apr One-off
MCO PHL 720 9:30 11:57 1-Mar 3-Mar Daily
MCO PHL 1666 17:19 19:50 2-Mar 2-Mar One-off
MCO PHL 562 9:30 11:57 4-Mar 2-Apr Daily
MCO PHL 1879 9:25 11:51 3-Apr 3-Apr One-off
PHL CLT 566 13:05 14:53 1-Mar 2-Apr Daily
PHL CLT 1995 9:46 11:35 25-Mar 25-Mar One-off
PHL LAX 751 15:45 18:57 24-Mar 2-Apr Daily
PHL LAX 700 15:50 18:54 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
PHL MCO 1786 18:15 21:04 1-Mar 2-Apr Daily
PHL MCO 1728 8:10 10:49 2-Mar 2-Mar One-off
PHL SFO 877 15:30 18:49 1-Mar 3-Mar Daily
PHL SFO 771 16:10 19:30 4-Mar 2-Apr Daily
PHL SFO 1977 15:50 19:05 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
PHX CLT 743 9:49 15:50 1-Mar 2-Apr Daily
PHX PHL 766 9:00 16:36 3-Apr 3-Apr One-off
SFO PHL 878 8:20 16:43 1-Mar 3-Mar Daily
SFO PHL 770 8:20 16:43 4-Mar 2-Apr Daily
SFO PHL 1984 8:30 16:59 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily

767-300

The fourth and final aircraft we’re going to take a look at is American Airlines’ old Boeing 767s. While these are far from the best AA business class seats — actually, these rank #6 in our rankings — at least they’ve got lie-flat seats.

From To Flight # Depart Arrive Starting Ending Frequency
CLT MIA 1234 9:55 12:13 26-Mar 2-Apr Daily
DFW MIA 2686 10:25 14:07 1-Mar 4-Mar Daily
DFW MIA 1462 12:35 16:17 1-Mar 2-Apr Daily
DFW MIA 2336 7:15 11:10 3-Apr 3-Apr One-off
DFW MIA 1057 14:35 18:31 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
DFW MIA 2427 10:25 14:12 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
DFW PHL 2748 20:35 0:41 2-Apr 2-Apr One-off
DFW PHL 2748 7:30 11:47 3-Apr 3-Apr One-off
JFK MIA 369 15:30 18:59 1-Mar 2-Apr Daily
JFK MIA 2230 6:00 9:14 24-Mar 24-Mar One-off
JFK MIA 65 15:30 18:53 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
JFK MIA 942 11:05 14:11 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
LAS MIA 2746 12:35 20:18 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
MIA CLT 348 6:40 8:49 26-Mar 2-Apr Daily
MIA DFW 2213 15:45 18:08 1-Mar 3-Mar Daily
MIA DFW 2427 17:35 20:02 1-Mar 2-Apr Daily
MIA DFW 2455 11:00 13:21 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
MIA DFW 263 7:00 9:17 4-Apr 30-Apr Daily
MIA JFK 391 13:05 16:04 1-Mar 2-Apr Daily
MIA JFK 2493 7:00 10:00 4-Mar 4-Mar One-off
MIA JFK 942 7:00 10:01 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
MIA JFK 2458 19:35 22:41 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
MIA LAS 1470 8:45 11:16 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
MIA ORD 1090 13:50 16:16 25-Mar 2-Apr Daily
MIA ORD 2439 10:05 12:31 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
MIA PHL 320 13:40 16:30 24-Mar 2-Apr Daily
MIA PHL 196 16:00 18:56 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
MIA PHL 1266 6:50 9:41 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
MIA PHL 2626 13:35 16:29 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
ORD MIA 342 17:19 21:23 25-Mar 2-Apr Daily
ORD MIA 2439 13:47 18:01 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
PHL MIA 97 17:40 20:43 25-Mar 2-Apr Daily
PHL MIA 2582 10:45 13:48 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
PHL MIA 2785 15:35 18:41 3-Apr 30-Apr Daily
PHL MIA 2683 17:45 20:55 4-Apr 30-Apr Daily

 

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