American Airlines recently began daily flights between Sydney and Los Angeles. With four other airlines flying the route, including American’s partner Qantas, how does the new service stack up?
Numerous members have already tried out the new flight. The answer seems to depend on the class of travel you’re flying.
American Airlines uses new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft featuring First class, Business and Economy on the Sydney route. It’s AA’s flagship aircraft, and is one of the nicest in the American Airlines fleet. All passengers have access to in-seat entertainment, power points and on-board wifi. And all Business and First passengers have seats with direct aisle access that convert to lie-flat beds.
Passengers that have flown the route in Business class have given some glowing reviews. The hard product is said to be very good, and the lie-flat beds can be topped with a mattress to make for a comfortable sleep on board. The soft product is also impressive, with large meals and pyjamas available.
Service – the crew aren’t the youngest out there, but they are experienced and they know what they are doing. I hear a lot of people complain about AA crew, but that hasn’t been my experience at all – I generally find them fast, efficient and friendly, and the crew on this flight were no exception. All up, it was a very good flight. I’d give it a 9 out of 10. Price being the same, I’d choose AA over QF.
But it seems that Economy is a different story. One member’s experience in the back of the plane has been described as the “worst flight” they’ve ever taken.
My friend and his wife just came back from Miami and they flew the new AA 72/23 SYD-LAX there and back… He said the crew were unorganized, did not know what they were doing. The flight from SYD-LAX was long and the worst he’s ever taken. Apparently the food was terrible too.
Seeing that Qantas has partnered with them, you’d expect some level of quality to match Qantas, but apparently it’s a bit mess. I on the other hand flew Qantas from Syd/LAX on the A380, and as usual the crew and the whole experience was as good as expected.
Economy on American Airlines is configured with 10-abreast seating. On a Boeing 777, this is notorious for being a rather tight squeeze. However, the front of Economy does feature a small “main cabin extra” section with slightly wider seats and more legroom. These seats can be purchased for an additional fee, or for free by American Airlines and oneworld elite members.
Qantas and American Airlines codeshare on each others’ trans-Pacific flights, meaning either Qantas points or American AAdvantage miles can be earned and redeemed on either airlines’ flights. One advantage of redeeming Qantas points for American Airlines flights is that American does not pass on any fuel surcharges.
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