American Airlines are going to be removing Flagship First from their Boeing 777-300ER fleet from late 2024. In its place will be a new business class product called Flagship Suite. People that believe a seat with a door is the epitome of luxury (eye roll) are sure to be pleased.
The Flagship Suite will first arrive on new deliveries of the Boeing 787-9 and Airbus A321XLR in 2024. Premium Economy will also feature a new seat design, which provides more privacy than before. Let’s have a look at what is going on.
Goodbye Flagship First
Flagship First is currently offered on the Boeing 777-300ER. There eight seats on offer across the twenty aircraft in the fleet, plus 52 Flagship Business Class seats. You can see the current layout on the seating plan here. These will be replaced by 70 Flagship Suite seats instead.
It’s also goodbye Flagship First on the Airbus A321T that operate transcontinental flights in the USA. These 16 aircraft currently have 10 first seats and 20 in business, as you can see on the seat map. These will all be changed over to the standard A321 configuration as per the rest of the fleet.
The New Flagship Suite
The Boeing 777s will receive 70 Flagship Suites and 44 of the new Premium Economy while the Boeing 787-9 will have 51 and 32 respectively. All of this should be step change in comfort for passengers at the pointy end. The pictures below certainly make it look good, so bring on 2024, I say!
Transcontinental frequent flyers of the oneworld alliance airline should not cry into their Champagne though. The new Airbus A321XLR will be deployed on transcontinental routes and feature 20 Flagship Suites and 12 Premium Economy seats, similar to their long-haul counterparts. Looks like a win to me!
The American Airlines press release does not say goodbye Flagship First, but that’s pretty obvious if you read between the lines. While I argued that first class should stay, the bean counters clearly disagree with me and have gone this way instead.
I think having good on board catering, decent Champagne and drinks, nice bedding and really friendly service is more important than a door on a seat. However, a whole cohort of people seem to be in the, “There’s no door? Must be a crap business class!” camp and so here we are.
What do you think of the new American Airlines Flagship Suite? Will you miss Flagship First? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.
All images via American Airlines except below.
Flagship First image via God Save The Points.