Flying on American Airlines for the 1% just got a little bit nicer.
Last week, American Airlines launched a new airport dining experience at New York JFK for its international first class customers. The so-called “Flagship Dining experience is built as a free, in-airport, sit down dining service for premium travelers to supplement the onboard experience. Attached to the airline’s Flagship lounges, which are effectively supercharged Admiral’s Clubs, it effectively delivers free restaurant service to passengers who can avoid the headache of the crowded terminal — or in some cases, the often-middling airplane food.
In opening the lounge, American became the first U.S. carrier to launch an in-airport dining service in its premium lounges. British Airways and Virgin Atlantic, among other international carriers, offers similar service both domestically and overseas.
The airline announced the new service on a release on its site.
Only those who are traveling in international first class will be allowed access to Flagship dining, though in international business class can still visit the general Flagship lounges.
Additionally, those who have ultra-elite, revenue-based Concierge Key status in American’s AAdvantage loyalty program will be allowed to visit Flagship dining (while similarly, top-tier Executive Platinum members will only be able to visit the general lounge) — even while flying on domestic routes. That perk provides a significant benefit for American’s Concierge Key members, though they have to spend an unpublished yet significant stack of cash each year in order to qualify for that status.
Last week’s opening at JFK also coincided with the opening of the general Flagship Lounge at the airport. According to Travel + Leisure, that new lounge features “white-gloved treatment” a DIY cocktail bar and a healthy selection of premium food and drink.
JFK’s Flagship Dining experience was the first to open for American and started operating on May 25. The airline plans to launch similar service at Chicago O’Hare, Dallas Fort-Worth, London Heathrow, Los Angeles International, Miami International, and Philadelphia International through the year.