American Joins Delta in Offering Free Meals in Main Cabin on Coast-to-Coast Flights

Today, American Airlines announced that select coast-to-coast routes within the United States will receive free meals for main cabin passengers.  American’s move follows a similar move by Delta Air Lines last month.  The meals will come in the form of a snack box.

Which Routes Will Receive the Free Main Cabin Meals?

Only American’s flights between New York and Los Angeles and San Francisco will receive the new main cabin meal service.  Considered American’s premium transcontinental flights, these routes will receive the new main cabins meals beginning May 1st.  Delta’s list of select transcontinental routes with free main cabins meals is far more extensive and includes select flights to traditionally non-premium markets.

(Image: American Airlines)

What Will These Meals Consist Of?

According to an official press release from American Airlines, the meals will feature, “A continental breakfast or a boxed meal with a sandwich wrap, kettle chips, and dessert. The menu also includes a vegetarian option and a fruit and cheese plate.” (AA press release)

The boxed meals are very similar, if not identical, to what American currently offers on their flights to Hawaii from Dallas.  Additionally, the contents of these breakfast and lunch boxes are very similar to those offered on Delta Air Lines.


This move by American is fantastic for main cabin passengers but falls a little short.  These select coast-to-coast routes aren’t even the longest transcontinental flights American flies within the US.  Miami to Seattle is scheduled with a flight time of over six hours, as is Boston to Los Angeles.  However, neither route will receive the new main cabin meals.

Additionally, there have already been complaints about Delta’s complimentary main cabin meals.  Main cabin boxed meals can often be stale and underwhelming.  The free main cabin meal service makes its debut May 1st.

What do you think about this announcement? What routes would you like free meals in economy?

Link to Full American Airlines Press Release