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International Flights On American Airlines Will No Longer Offer First Class Seating

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International Flights On American Airlines Will No Longer Offer First Class Seating

(CTN News) – There aren’t enough buyers for the expensive first-class seats on American Airlines’ international flights, so the airline is eliminating the tickets.

“We won’t make first class available on the 777, or at American Airlines for that matter, because our customers aren’t buying it,” Vasu Raja, the company’s chief commercial officer, said.

Many passengers are choosing business-class tickets instead of first-class tickets, Raja said.

Airbus A321XLR and Boeing 787-9 aircraft will be equipped with a new premium class called Flagship Suite starting next year. First-class rows will have to be scrapped for that to happen.

Moreover, by removing it, we can offer more business-class seats, which is what our customers want most.

Business-class tickets from American Airlines offer more legroom than economy class seats, free internet access, a larger selection of food options, as well as pillows and blankets.

American’s website states that it is the highest level ticket available for short international trips. For longer international flights, the Flagship Suite option offers fully reclined seats.

In recent years, frequent fliers have changed, so American is emphasizing the Flagship Suite. American used to have about half of its passengers as corporate travelers a few years ago.

As of now, roughly 60% of bookings are leisure demand willing to pay more for a quality business class seat, according to Raja.

By 2026, American plans to increase Flagship Suite seating by more than 45%. In 1998 and 2016, Delta and United Airlines eliminated first class rows on international flights.

Getting your baggage fee refunded

Separately, American Airlines settled a class-action lawsuit with passengers this week, agreeing to pay $7.5 million for wrongfully charging some people baggage fees.

According to a court ruling, the funds will be used to refund customers who incorrectly paid checked baggage fees between 2013 and 2021.

Additionally, American is in the middle of contract negotiations with its pilots’ union.

In September, nearly 300 American Airlines pilots protested outside the company’s headquarters in Fort Worth, Texas. Forbes reported last month that pilots want a 20% raise among other concessions.

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