In recent days I’ve covered the questions that American Airlines employees are asking management – and the candid responses they’re getting.
- For instance one American pilot says that American’s new standard domestic lavatory is the worst experience in the world and he’ll refuse to deadhead in coach on that plane.
- I broke the news that American is looking to buy used Airbus A319s
- Discussed the number one issue for flight attendants right now, lower profit sharing payouts
- And American’s efforts to simplify their fleet and finally offer a more consistent product, despite past resistance throughout the merger to upping the product on legacy US Airways aircraft I’ve long referred to as the ‘basket of deplorables’ of their fleet. Sadly this consistency will mean elimination of business class seats — and “MAXifying” domestic planes.
American also answers employee questions in writing. These answers usually aren’t as illuminating because they aren’t as candid and on the spot. However there are still things we can learn.
Even painting a stripe on a plane’s winglet is more money than American wants to spend. You can take the management out of America West, but you can’t take America West out of the management.
Don’t expect any new ultra long haul routes from American (or anything new out of Tulsa). American sees the opportunity cost of ultra long haul flights as too high to be profitable.
New planes without seat back video don’t work for a lot of customers, the one investment American might consider may surprise you. They claim 90% of customers bring their own devices, that really means smartphones and is probably high. Try getting their streaming video to work on a Windows laptop. They haven’t shown interest in an iPad rental program for families that don’t have one tablet per kid and one each for the parents. Headphone splitters, on the other hand…
You can’t really rent headset splitters, people put those in their ears, the required cleaning would be significant. But I suppose you could sell them.