Sponsor Message:
Civil Aviation Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
Will AA Ever Consider A Premium Economy Section?  
User currently offlineFCO110 From United States of America, joined Sep 2008, 80 posts, RR: 0
Posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 5137 times:

I know they got rid of MRTC overall but is there any demand even internationally for a premium economy product? I find it surprising that airlines like BA have large business and premium economy sections and a relatively small coach section. Do the financials just not work with the AA customer demographic?

22 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineRichardw From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 3746 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 5104 times:

Depends if they plan on stopping advertised at check-in dirt cheap upgrades to business and of course any tie up with BA.

User currently offlineFCO110 From United States of America, joined Sep 2008, 80 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 5021 times:



Quoting Richardw (Reply 1):
Depends if they plan on stopping advertised at check-in dirt cheap upgrades to business and of course any tie up with BA

Every time I fly to Europe business seems to be filled before I arrive at the airport.


User currently offlineTAN FLYR From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 1904 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 4891 times:

It seems that at one time there was a small dedicated sub MD-80 fleet assigned solely to fly between DFW-ORD..and they had either some sort of MRTC or a larger first class cabin, or something...maybe a few better seats up front in coach..I don't exactly recall.

User currently offlineSoxfan From United States of America, joined Mar 2008, 864 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 4861 times:



Quoting TAN FLYR (Reply 3):
It seems that at one time there was a small dedicated sub MD-80 fleet assigned solely to fly between DFW-ORD..and they had either some sort of MRTC or a larger first class cabin, or something...maybe a few better seats up front in coach..I don't exactly recall.

Not to hijack the thread, but could one technically argue then that DL's former 737 and MD88s devoted solely to shuttle flights were premium economy because all seats had extra legroom?

On the other hand, I'm assuming by premium economy the OP is referring to more than just extra legroom (i.e. upgraded meal service, smaller cabin, etc.)



Pilot: "Request push, which way should we face?" JFK Ground: "You better face the front, sir, or you'll scare the pax!"
User currently offlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 30623 posts, RR: 84
Reply 5, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 4781 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

A true "premium economy" cabin with less seats per row in addition to additional legroom is unlikely - not just at AA, but any United States flag carrier.

United is said to be seeing decent revenue from offering paid upgrades to Economy Plus (either on a per flight basis or through an annual pass) which is just extra legroom, however that nobody else has followed, probably means none of the other US flag carriers will do so, since they all tend to follow each other's lead (both good and bad).


User currently offlineLipeGIG From Brazil, joined May 2005, 11420 posts, RR: 58
Reply 6, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 4745 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
FORUM MODERATOR



Quoting Stitch (Reply 5):
A true "premium economy" cabin with less seats per row in addition to additional legroom is unlikely - not just at AA, but any United States flag carrier.

Agree. I'm a big advocate of premium economy but at AA i just can't see it. Their 772 is already too premium, and the difference from high fares on Economy to I (deep discount Business) in some routes (like LHR) is already too little and for sure a Premium Economy would hurt Y/I sales. Full Y is better than Premium and with less I fares sold, chances are for less revenue from J.

Premium Economy in my view works fine for airlines with a big premium from Economy to Business, and in markets already with mature target customers willing to fly it.
South America for example (where AA have a considerable presence) see it in a very limited way, and i'm sure there's no or very limited corporate policy there for Premium Economy.



New York + Rio de Janeiro = One of the best combinations !
User currently offlineRipcordd From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 1149 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 4687 times:

AA did have a small sub fleet of S80's but they just had 20F seats vs the 14F on the other S80 the seats were the same as the rest of the fleet. They used them btwn ORD/DFW-LGA mostly it only lasted for a short time. Also I can see if the F demand dosn't pick up I can see them getting rid of F and having J Prem Y and Y. 1 Route will never change is the cash cow JFK-LAX which will also have a F product

User currently offlineUSAirALB From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 3039 posts, RR: 2
Reply 8, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 4607 times:



Quoting TAN FLYR (Reply 3):
It seems that at one time there was a small dedicated sub MD-80 fleet assigned solely to fly between DFW-ORD..and they had either some sort of MRTC or a larger first class cabin, or something...maybe a few better seats up front in coach..I don't exactly recall.

It wasn't S80s it was F100s, they used them to compete with Legend Airlines using the 50 seat loop hole at LUV.



E135/E140/E145/E70/E75/E90/CR2/CR7/CR9/717/732/733/734/735/73G/738/739/752/753/762/772/319/320/321/333
User currently offlineWROORD From United States of America, joined Mar 2009, 946 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 4546 times:

When you book a ticket they have the front of the aircraft marked in purple as preferred seating, but I have not noticed any difference besides the front location.

User currently offlineGayStudPilot From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 453 posts, RR: 7
Reply 10, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 4478 times:

A better opportunity seems to be on two class international config aircraft for DL and CO. the disparity between business and coach is large and I'm sure there are people willing to pay a price in between for a service in between, especially on flights like LAX-SYD.

IMO, UA Economy Plus doesn't really count in this category. the extra legroom is nice, but it's not a premium cabin class to economy.


User currently offlineJDAirCEO From Uruguay, joined Jan 2006, 260 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 4410 times:



Quoting WROORD (Reply 9):
When you book a ticket they have the front of the aircraft marked in purple as preferred seating, but I have not noticed any difference besides the front location.

No difference in seats here, they are just near the front of the Y cabin and are mostly isles and windows. Exit rows are held back for the same reason. The seats are also held back so elite customers have a better chance at getting a decent seat with last minute bookings.
Markets with higher premium demand like DFW-ORD DFW-LGA DFW-LAX have more seats blocked near the front for this reason.

I believe AS blocks all seats forward of exit rows on every flight for elite members.



An MD-80 is great... in first class
User currently offlineNYC2theworld From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 663 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 4304 times:



Quoting GayStudPilot (Reply 10):
A better opportunity seems to be on two class international config aircraft for DL and CO. the disparity between business and coach is large and I'm sure there are people willing to pay a price in between for a service in between, especially on flights like LAX-SYD.

IMO, UA Economy Plus doesn't really count in this category. the extra legroom is nice, but it's not a premium cabin class to economy.

Then wouldn't you be back to a First/Business/Coach scenario just under different names?



Always wonderers if this "last and final boarding call" is in fact THE last and final boarding call.
User currently offlineAajfksjubklyn From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 901 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 4078 times:

I think it is a safe assumption that AA is not going to start loosing screws and moving seats around AGAIN. I think they learned their lesson well, to quote a Madona song.

If it's not bringing in revenue, they will not be doing it.

Yes, AA has certain seat blocking patterns for EXP, PLT, GLD members. Normally I always get a bulkhead or "nicer" seat except on a Stupid 80. On those the 1st two rows of coach are blocked for EXP members....if they dont utilize the seats they open to PLT's.


User currently offlineTAN FLYR From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 1904 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 3915 times:



Quoting USAirALB (Reply 8):
It wasn't S80s it was F100s, they used them to compete with Legend Airlines using the 50 seat loop hole at LUV

Hmm..I thought those went to MDW not ORD? (from LUV)


User currently offline44k From United States of America, joined Aug 2007, 310 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 3864 times:



Quoting Aajfksjubklyn (Reply 13):
Normally I always get a bulkhead or "nicer" seat except on a Stupid 80. On those the 1st two rows of coach are blocked for EXP members....if they dont utilize the seats they open to PLT's.

Actually, those seats are blocked for airport use to accommodate special needs pax as well as families with infants/children. Actually, anyone can receive those seats (row 7-8) if they request it at check-in or gate.


User currently offlineUnited1 From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 5930 posts, RR: 9
Reply 16, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 3842 times:



Quoting TAN FLYR (Reply 14):
Quoting USAirALB (Reply 8):
It wasn't S80s it was F100s, they used them to compete with Legend Airlines using the 50 seat loop hole at LUV

Hmm..I thought those went to MDW not ORD? (from LUV)

Actually your both right. There was an MD-80 configuration that had a high number of F class seats that AA used on heavily traveled business routes out of the hubs. There was also a F-100 configuration that was all F class which AA used to crush...er compete with Legend out of DAL.



Semper Fi - PowerPoint makes us stupid.
User currently offlineRipcordd From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 1149 posts, RR: 1
Reply 17, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 3788 times:

They had a small sub fleet of S80 with 20F vs 14F on the rest which they were manily used on DFW/ORD/LGA Routes. The F100 had 56F sold as coach which flew DAL-ORD-DAL-LAX-DAL-LGA

User currently offlineCrAAzy From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 772 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 3778 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!



Quoting JDAirCEO (Reply 11):
No difference in seats here, they are just near the front of the Y cabin and are mostly isles and windows. Exit rows are held back for the same reason. The seats are also held back so elite customers have a better chance at getting a decent seat with last minute bookings.

The Elite seats blocked also have power ports. Only 50-60% of the Y seats have powerports on AAs MD 80s and older 737s (so there are also powerports seats that aren't blocked as elite).


User currently offlinePSU.DTW.SCE From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 7529 posts, RR: 28
Reply 19, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 3715 times:

I actually believe there may be some viability to a premium economy in the future on not just AA but on other carriers. Here's why:

Remember how airlines like DL, CO, NW completely eliminated 3-class service, getting rid of First but instead offering a enhanced business-class product, and coach cabin. The driver behind this was that due to corporate travel policies that companies would not pay for First but would for Business. There just wasn't enough demand at premium fares to justify a full-fledge F product. AA went that route with the 763's, and there is limited demand to the number of routes that can truly justify 3-class 777 service these days.

Now in the environment of this economic downturn, you are seeing many companies significantly cutting back on travel expenses. Some are cutting travel almost across the board, others are significantly trying to cut costs. There are many companies now that won't pay for their employees to fly Business internationally.

For example, my company up until last year:
- Domestic service <6 hours: Coach
- Domestic service > 6 hours: Business (trans-cons)
- International service <6 hours: Coach
- International service > 6 hours: Business

Now this year:
- All domestic service: Coach
- International service <10 hours: Coach (now all midwest / east coast - Europe is in Coach)
- International service >10 hours: Business (only midwest / east coast - Asia can be business now)
* Exception: International trips > 6 hours with a stay >14 days, may fly Business

We aren't the only company to do such, there are many companies now that won't pay for business class across the Atlantic. They are questioning why they should may $3,000-$4,000 on an ORD-FRA in Business class, versus $700-$900 in coach.
Yes, its the travel program managers who make the rules, not the actual travelers themselves. That said, it is impossible to be productive the next day flying coach across the Atlantic on a redeye.

I think you may see the same thing happen again in the future, with a new 3-class product. Business (with lie-flats, etc.); A premium coach class - with better leg room, better seat recline, maybe slightly wider seats, without additional ammenities - targeting people who want to be able to get sleep on the redeye, or people to use a laptop; and Coach

If the airlines could sell Premium Economy seats on international flights at 1.5 - 2x the cost of Coach, compared to the Business which is usually 4-5x the cost of a coach ticket, then they would probably be able to have sufficient demand to make such a product work.

Domestically, if the others haven't copied UA's E+ yet, they probably won't. They will still keep F on domestic flights to use for first/business pax connecting to international flights, and as a marketing tool since its one of the few elite/loyalty benefits left.


User currently offlineGayStudPilot From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 453 posts, RR: 7
Reply 20, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 3618 times:

PSU.DTW.SCE...

I don't disagree with you, however it's very US centric. In other countries, class of travel is associated with title and benefits more so than in the US.

Also you do not take into account who is flying in international first today vs 10 years ago, ie, more of those that were 10 years ago are now flying private vs commercial.


User currently offlineAAJFKSJUBKLYN From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 901 posts, RR: 1
Reply 21, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 3524 times:



Quoting 44k (Reply 15):
Actually, those seats are blocked for airport use to accommodate special needs pax as well as families with infants/children. Actually, anyone can receive those seats (row 7-8) if they request it at check-in or gate.

When I was EPLT I had no problem booking those seats, especially on a S80. Your statement is not entirely true-unless AA changed something in the past 2 years.


User currently offlineCkfred From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 5181 posts, RR: 1
Reply 22, posted (4 years 10 months 1 week 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 3305 times:

It seems to me that the legacy carriers could sell an upgraded domestic coach product, i.e., one that includes 1 free checked bag, a free snack (or hot meal on flights over 4 hours), power ports for every seat, and maybe an exta 2 inches of leg room.

If you think about it, a person who travels for business would love to get rid of the hassles (both finding cash or plastic and keeping receipts) of buying food at the airport and either paying for a checked bag or schlepping the bag around the airport and trying to stow it on board.

The problem would be pricing it. Since the elimination of Saturday-stay requirments, most business flyers travel on heavily discounted coach fares, assuming that the aren't booking travel on the day of departure.

If you still charge a Y fare for the same barebones coach product that you charge for a family booking travel 3 months in advance, then pricing an upgraded coach product presents a lot of problems. You don't want to price it so high that no one books it, but you don't want to price it so low that families with small kids and generous travel budgets start booking it.


Top Of Page
Forum Index

This topic is archived and can not be replied to any more.

Printer friendly format

Similar topics:More similar topics...
Will AA Ever Return To ALB posted Sat Jan 3 2009 06:08:40 by AirMatt
Will AA Ever Serve Amsterdam posted Tue Nov 4 2008 21:38:05 by LONGisland89
Will AA Ever Fly DFW-China? posted Sat Oct 20 2007 13:26:07 by LAXdude1023
Will AA Ever Come Back To FSD? posted Mon Aug 27 2007 05:07:41 by Airbusaddict
Will AA Ever Bring Back STL-CUN/SJU posted Sun Mar 18 2007 21:53:49 by CIDflyer
Will AA Ever Change Its Livery posted Sat Apr 17 2004 05:27:09 by DfwneedsQF
Will Lufthansa Ever Upgrade Its Economy Class? posted Tue Dec 9 2003 02:47:06 by MEA321
Will AA Ever Fly 777 ORD-FRA posted Sat Aug 24 2002 01:42:56 by B764
Will AA Ever Fly From SJC To Florida N/S? posted Mon Dec 4 2000 01:17:02 by FirstClass!
Will AA Ever Order The 747-400? posted Thu Jun 29 2000 18:36:57 by Dellatorre