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Every aspect of the air travel journey matters in today’s increasingly customer-centric world. Whether a passenger is checking in to a flight, grabbing a bite to eat, or looking to get some sleep during a flight, the airline has the potential to provide thoughtful, well-designed services that enhance the passenger’s flying experience.
American Airlines is one airline that has taken steps forward to give their premium passengers more than the typical best-in-class service — both in-flight and on the ground — through its Flagship experience. Here’s a look at what it entails:
Most airline passengers would agree that a satisfying flight experience starts before a passenger steps onto the plane — a good or bad check-in has the potential to make or break an entire flight. With American’s Flagship First Check-In service, qualifying customers have access to personalized service and a dedicated security line through a private check-in area away from the busyness of the airport. The service is currently available at Chicago O’Hare, London Heathrow, Los Angeles International, and New York JFK airports.
Lounges and Dining
Let’s face it, airports aren’t known for their culinary options, usually for good reason. However, if you’re a first or business class customer on an international or transcontinental flight on American, you have access to quality food and drink options while waiting for your flight. The airline’s new Flagship Lounge offers its premium customers buffet style meals with full-size hot and cold entrees, specialty cocktails, and premium wine, along with shower suites, workspace areas, and luggage storage to help passengers unwind.
American’s Flagship experience goes beyond the typical airport lounge. Its Flagship First Dining experience, an exclusive space located within some of the airline’s Flagship Lounges, provides premium passengers full restaurant-like service with wine, signature cocktails, and regionally inspired meals featuring local ingredients.
Flagship Lounges are now open in Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, and New York JFK airports, with Flagship First Dining at New York JFK, Los Angeles, and Miami airports.
In-Flight and Amenities
First and business class amenities have come a long way from a glass of champagne and a warm towel. American Airlines now has partnerships with Cole Haan, Bose, and Casper, which provide premium passengers with curated experiences on board.
The airline has also partnered with award-winning chefs such as Maneet Chauhan, Sam Choy, Sean Connolly, and Jun Kurogi to offer passengers specialty cuisine and beverage options on both transcontinental and international flights. A menu on a flight from the U.S. to Europe or South America or from China to the U.S. might feature duck confit pot pie, slow braised lamb osso buco or ancient kamut grain risotto inspired by chef Chauhan.
As far as physical comfort goes, all of American’s transcontinental and international long-haul flights have lie-flat beds in first and business class. Passengers on these flights also receive soft goods designed by sleep technology company Casper, Cole Haan amenity kits containing travel essentials from C.O. Bigelow and Clark’s Botanicals, as well as free movies, TV, music, and game options with noise cancelling headphones.
All in all, these small touches add up to elevate the passenger experience from start to finish, and show how airlines can go above and beyond to drive loyalty and surpass customer expectations.