Space is the main reason for purchasing a first class ticket on any international airline, as well as the food and service. The vast amount of room afforded to first class passengers flying long haul on American Airlines does not disappoint. For this flight from New York JFK to London Heathrow I was seated in 1J. I believe this is one of the best positions on the Boeing 777-200 as there is no one in front of you and the cabin attendants seem to pay special attention to your needs (they see you easily when in the galley area). The champagne glass never went to half empty and the crew on board ensured it stayed fresh and cool to the palate.
AA is undertaking a renewal of its First class seats onboard the new 777-300 aircraft, however for this flight on a 777-200 I used the older first class seat. The upgraded amenities and dining options, now advertised on AA, is available throughout the whole fleet … so if you do find yourself in an older seat … everything else will be up to date and up to scratch. The older seats definitely need updating as there is a sense of wear and tear compared to first class offered on other international carriers especially Asian and European products. AA is getting its act together so lets see how they fare in the new 777, please keep in mind that the older seats are still more than adequate. Its not like anything is threadbare, rough or scratched. for the purposes of a really comfortable flight, I think AA is still the best in class for an American based airline.
The seat has a unique “swivel” feature I have not encountered before. By pulling a small latch on the left side of the armrest you have the ability to swing the entire seat towards the windows (or your travelling companion when in the middle section). I enjoyed this immensely as now I had a flying office with a very original vantage point. I used this position for my main meal as well as writing in my personal diary.
Time to Rest
The bed has a great deal of space and is extremely comfortable. I was offered pyjamas and slippers prior to take off in the event I needed something else to wear to get really comfy. When ready the crew will offer a “turn-down” service and prepare the seat for a lie flat bed position. The comforter and the pillows were excellent. I especially felt that the two soft pillows were a nice touch giving me a real sense of home. The amenity kit has been updated as well and will be presented to you in a nifty ipad case for reuse in the future. the creams, socks and night-mask are adequate. I have found that first class amenities on other airlines to be far superior so this is an area that American airlines may want to improve.
I will give the crew full credit for outstanding service. The outfits in particular impressed me. The jacket and ties worn by some of the male staff looked fantastic. I was greeted with smiles and warmth and all of my needs were met without hesitation. As I was celebrating a special occasion, I decided to take a few pictures soon after boarding and one of the crew actually said “lets do a small photo shoot” and then quickly took a number of shots at different angles making everything whimsical and fun. If you are celebrating something don’t be afraid to tell the crew and definitely don’t be afraid to take a few pictures. Just be mindful of the flash as you do not want to disturb other passengers. However a few shots through the flight never hurt. Hey this is a mode of travel that does not happen everyday so really enjoy the moment and the experience and be thankful you are sitting there in the first place.