The fact that AA does not paint their planes saves them the cost of painting planes (which is very expensive) and saves them millions of dollars in fuel, since paints adds a significant amount to a planes weight.
When I worked for American, the emphasis was always on the fuel savings. One of the finance directors told me that the cost to paint an airplane versus buff the skin, as AA
has to do, actually mitigates much of the paint vs. no paint savings. The real savings comes from less fuel.
It's no secret in the analyst world that AA
is going to eventually overhaul it's pricing structure, but on a systemwide basis versus hub-only as DL
did in CVG
and, more broadly, US has done. I would suspect AA
is contemplating matching NW
's fee for making a reservation in person or at the airport, though I don't think they'll be the second one to match the GDS shared cost approach.
is also eventually going to introduce a new Business Class seat, but I didn't get the impression it will be in the near future.
So, perhaps, it's a combination of new advertising, brand awareness, pricing structure, inflight service (buy on board), amongst, perhaps, some other enhancements.