American Airlines Business Class OneWorld Trip Reports

American Airlines Business Class Boeing 777-200ER | Madrid to New York

Airline: American Airlines (AA)
Flight Number: AA95
Route: MAD-JFK
Class: Business Class
Aircraft: Boeing 777-200ER
Registration: N786AN
Delivered: April 2000
Flight Duration: 7 Hours 10 Minutes
Distance: 3,589 Miles

Overall Impression:

This flight back to New York was being operated by an almost 23-year old Boeing 777-200ER fitted with the Collins Aerospace Super Diamond Business Class Seats. Despite the aircraft’s age, the seats were still very comfortable and private for the 7-hour journey across the pond. While the food and catering were decent, they were not particularly outstanding. The crew who worked our flight were professional and efficient, but did not demonstrate the same level of service and attentiveness as other crews on our prior American Airlines flights. We were offered pre-departure beverages and hot towels, as well as the standard business class amenities. Overall, the hard product was satisfactory, but the service could could use some improvements.

What I Liked:

The Seats – The Boeing 777-200ER of American Airlines has 37 Collins Aerospace Super Diamond Business Class Seats arranged in a reverse herringbone 1-2-1 configuration. The seat is spacious and has plenty of storage, making it great for lounging and dining. However, if you’re a taller person, you might find that your knees hit the pullout table when you roll over during sleep. But for shorter folks like me (I’m 5’7″), it wasn’t an issue. I liked that there were personal air nozzles to keep me cool through out the flight. Overall, the seat was comfy, spacious, and private for a relaxing flight back to the states.

The onboard service – The onboard service was decent, but it didn’t quite measure up to the outbound flight from Dallas. During the meal service, we interacted with two senior flight attendants who were both friendly and efficient, though a bit scattered at times. We were offered pre-departure beverages and hot towels, which was a nice touch. Overall, the crew was okay, but not as impressive on our previous AA flights.

The IFE – American Airlines’ Panasonic IFE is one of my top picks for in-flight entertainment. The interface is user-friendly and quick to respond, making it easy to use. Plus, there’s a wide range of media content available, including my favorite Panasonic Voyager moving map app. It was the perfect way to keep myself entertained throughout the transatlantic flight.

The Iberia “Sala de Velazquez” Lounge in Madrid – The “Velazquez” Lounge by Iberia in Madrid is hands down the best lounge at the airport. The lounge is spacious and well-lit with plenty of comfortable seating options to choose from. They also have an impressive selection of beverages, snacks, and hot food items available, which made for a great pre-flight meal. Overall, it’s an great lounge that’s worth checking out if you have the time before your flight.

What I didn’t Like:

Expensive and Unreliable in-flight WiFi – The cost of in-flight WiFi has significantly increased on AA. While it used to cost $20 for the entire flight, it has now almost doubled to $35. The WiFi service was also pretty unreliable during the flight. I was hoping to get caught up on work email, but was only able to successfully send and receive messages a few times during the flight.

It was OK, I guess…

The Amenities – As part of its business class offerings, AA provides a range of amenities, such as a business class amenity kit, Bang and Olufsen noise-cancelling headphones (which are collected 45 minutes prior to landing), bottled water, and a full-size pillow and duvet set. However, it’s worth noting that no slippers, pajamas, or mattress pads were provided on this route.

The catering – The catering out of Madrid was decent, with a fresh and light starter course of seasonal greens and salmon tataki. Our pre-ordered Roasted Chicken and Sirloin Steak main dish were cooked perfectly and juicy. The star of the meal was the ice cream sundae for dessert was sinfully delightful. The crew setup a walk-up snack bar behind the forward business class cabin mid-flight, which offered a selection of small snacks, and water. Sadly, the pre-arrival meal was disappointing. we opted for the Pulled BBQ Sandwich, which probably sat in the oven a bit too long, as it was almost inedible. The meal was also served with fresh fruits and a pot of chocolate ganache.

Bottom Line:

All in all, I thought the flight was pretty decent. The seats were comfortable enough, and the IFE kept me entertained throughout the journey. The crew was friendly and efficient, though the service was not as impressive as our other recent flights we’ve had on AA. The food was hit or miss, but I definitely enjoyed the ice cream sundae for dessert. The only real downside was the expensive and unreliable in-flight WiFi. If you’re looking for a solid, no-frills business class experience on this route, then AA may just be the ticket.

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