American Airlines to restore hot-food service at lounges
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 Fort Worth, Texas-based carrier has reopened up to 15 of its lounges since closing them all during the spring. Since the lounges first reopened, only prepackaged snacks and full-service bars (where allowed) have been customers’ only options at the lounge.
But hot food is set to return to the lounges beginning Wednesday (Aug. 12), part of what American calls a “phased reopening strategy” for the clubs. Additional food-for-sale items will be added to the line-up on Aug. 19.
For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
With the move, American would be the first of the so-called “Big 3” U.S. airlines to return hot-food service to its lounges. Both Delta and United are both still offering only individually packaged food selections at the lounges they’ve reopened.
While American’s menu options will be limited, offerings planned by the airline include:
- Complimentary breakfast beginning on Aug. 12, with options of customizable scrambled eggs or oatmeal
- Complimentary lunch beginning on Aug. 12, with options of customizable mac and cheese and soups of four different flavors (garden vegetable; southwest corn; tomato portobello; butternut squash)
- Food-for-sale beginning on Aug. 19; sample items such as deep dish pizza at Chicago (ORD) and sliced brisket sandwich at Dallas (DFW), with other vegetarian and gluten-free options
To adhere to CDC guidelines and to reduce touchpoints, the airline has said that gloved and masked team members will prepare the food “behind protective acrylic screens at a safe social distance.” Customers can “access” food-for-sale items using QR codes.
“Our guests tell us they’ve been eager for their menu favorites to return, and we are excited to bring those items back […],” said Janelle Anderson, VP of Global Marketing & Digital at American.
The airline is not yet planning to bring back self-serve areas or shower facilities for guests. It also said that it will limit capacity at its lounge areas to 50%.
The announcement comes as some airport lounges in the U.S. – whether they are operated by a domestic or an international carrier – are beginning to reopen with drastically scaled-back service. As part of the industry’s confidence-building measures, many operators are emphasizing hygiene in these lounges. Measures include the installation of plexiglass shields at service desks, increasing cleaning and disinfecting frequency and posting signs for social distancing. Still, some lounges — such as American Express’s popular Centurion Lounges — remain closed indefinitely.
For American, though, its lounge reopenings have focused on its hub airports. The return of some services — such as hot food choices — come as American and other airlines try to get a sense of what customers service might look like in the pandemic era. While closing down its Flagship Lounge and other exclusive offerings does come at a disappointment to some of the higher-fare customers, resumption of some of these services does seem promising.
Unfortunately, the carrier has not yet announced when other lounge locations will reopen. As of Thursday (Aug. 6), the list of reopened Clubs in the U.S. include:
- Charlotte (CLT) – Concourses B and C
- Chicago O’Hare (ORD) – Concourse H/K
- Dallas / Fort Worth (DFW) – Terminals A, B, C and D
- Los Angeles (LAX) – Terminal 4
- Miami (MIA) – Gate D30
- New York Kennedy (JFK) – Terminal 8 (in the Flagship Lounge)**
- New York LaGuardia (LGA) – Concourse D**
- Philadelphia (PHL) – Terminals B/C and F
- Phoenix (PHX) – Gate A7
- Washington Reagan (DCA) – Terminal B
**Only pre-packaged food and bottled water will be available, per local restrictions.
Featured photo courtesy of American Airlines
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees