AA Business to Europe

Dec 9th, 2004, 03:48 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Dec 2004
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AA Business to Europe

To all:
In May,my wife and I will be celebrating our 10th anniversary in Europe. We'll be flying AA from DFW-MIA-CDG outbound and CDG-BOS-DFW inbound (via business class). We've never flown business/first before, so what can we really expect to be different? Is the food/wine awesome? Will we want to take advantage of the Admirals Club/Flagship Lounge/Arrivals Lounge? As a newbie, please let me know as much as possible!!
hgh3 is offline  
Dec 10th, 2004, 03:20 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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The arrivals lounge will be or already is closed in CDG. You didn't say if you have any status so assuming that you are not Executive Platinum, the business ticket will only get you to the Admirals club. Besides, out of all the airports that you will be departing/passing through/arriving, Boston is the only one that has the Flagship Lounge and that is being closed as well. So, you will have access to AC at DFW on your departure. Either terminal A or C. Both clubs are right in the middle of the terminals (~gate 22). Both are about equal in size. Food(limited to salads and sandwiches) and drinks will cost you. MIA is in the middle of construction. The only AC that is open is outside security in terminal D?(not sure, check www.aa.com). If you have a tight connection or if you don't want to bother with security again, stay airside. Again, drinks and food will cost you, so besides a quiet corner you are not getting anything special.

I have never been at the Paris nor Boston ACs so I can't comment.

You will be flying a 767, a 2 class plane. The business section has tons of room. The seats are not flat but enough to make it into a comfortable bed. For entertainment you will get a personal DVD player with about 20 DVDs and Bose Headphones. There are about 10 movies, 5 TV shows and 5 "special" (National Geographic, Children cartoons, etc) DVDs.
You will get a menu with 4 or 5 choices for dinner on the outbound and same number of choices for lunch on the inbound. There will be a breakfast served on the outbound and a snack on the inbound. AA has a system for food choices. They only load so many dishes of each choice. In most cases it works out because it's based on previous experiences, but there is really no way to predict what the paxs on any one flight will choose. So, if having a choice is important to you here is a little secret. FEBO = front/even numbered flights, back/odd number flights. What that means is this. The FA will take orders starting from the front on even numbered flights, and from the back on odd numbered flights.
All drinks/wine is free and actually AA has a nice selection of wines/champaignes. Enjoy!

Have a great trip!
AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Dec 10th, 2004, 09:17 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Effective January 1, 2005, the Boston Flagship Lounge will close. The concurrent space for the Flagship Lounge in Boston will become part of the Admirals Club®. Premium International and Full-Fare, First Class transcontinental customers will have access to the Admirals Club on a complimentary basis.

Effective February 1, 2005, the Paris Charles de Gaulle Arrivals Lounge will close. The Admirals Club in Paris will remain open.
AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Dec 10th, 2004, 10:25 AM
  #4  
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AAFF:
I'd read a few of your posts already, so made sure we followed the FEBO system. Thanks for the great tip! I don't have any status, and hate to hear that the arrivals lounges will be closing-- a shower on arrival at CDG would've been nice! The tickets were gifted to us with mileage, but I'll still be able to use the Admiral's club, right?
hgh3 is offline  
Dec 10th, 2004, 10:26 AM
  #5  
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Also, will we have any special considerations in RE: security checkpoints, etc.?
hgh3 is offline  
Dec 10th, 2004, 11:25 AM
  #6  
 
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Yes, you will be able to use any AC in DFW and MIA on the outbound and CDG and BOS on the inbound. Remember, the MIA AC is outside security in concourse E, so you will have to clear security to get back to the gate if you decide to visit the club.

If there are premium/elites security lines at DFW and CDG you most certainly will be able to use it due to your business ticket. I only connect throuhgh Dallas so I don't know if they have special security line and it's been some time since I flew out of CDG, so I don't remember if they do. The ticket agents will be able to tell you if one is available.
AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Dec 10th, 2004, 11:31 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I flew transatlantic AA biz class and it was quite pleasant. Yes, you will be able to use the lounge, but they aren't as nice as biz lounges of some other carriers (for one thing, they seemed much more crowded the last time I flew on AA and they have a limit on drinks [not that I wanted to get loaded, but being given a coupon for one drink seemed a bit stingy]--I thought the biz class lounges for BA and Swiss were much nicer and more relaxed). You will be given a glass of champagne or juice when you board. A little weird or cool (depending on perspective) to be sipping a drink while the cattle class passengers file by. I flew through O'Hare, not Boston, but didn't notice any special treatment re security. Your luggage *should* arrive pretty quickly though, usually ahead of economy passengers.
I liked the personal DVDs--my favorite was Brian Setzer Orchestra Live From Tokyo--I watched it about 3 times total coming and going and later bought it. The only downside to the personal DVD player is finding a place to put it during meal service, etc.
You should enjoy your flight (knocking wood that it's smooth). I just flew BA translantic biz class and I didn't find the seats or service that much better than AA's. I DID like the option of having dinner in the biz class lounge before the flight to Europe. If AA offers that, I highly recommend you take advantage of it. It's a much easier way to dine.
P.S. The food and wine aren't "awesome", but they are certainly nice and miles better than economy class!
P.P.S. Happy anniversary!!
BTilke is offline  
Dec 10th, 2004, 11:38 AM
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ORD and LAX are 2 airports that do have premium/elites security line. At LAX is a life saver, at ORD I have used it about 50% of the time because the other times the regular lines were not crowded at all.
AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Dec 10th, 2004, 11:52 AM
  #9  
 
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AAFF, I guess there was a problem the time I flew through ORD because the Premium/Elite pax were going through the same line as the great unwashed. Nice to know there is a separate line on most occasions.
Sometimes events play a role in the security setup...my husband flew to the U.S. the morning after the plane crash in Russia and there was only one security line and every passenger was undergoing the same tight scrutiny.
BTilke is offline  
Dec 10th, 2004, 01:26 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
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We upgraded to business on AA for our last two flights from CDG to the US. In October 2004, we requested upgrades 21 days in advance for our flight from CDG to ORD to DFW (the Chicago layover was about $100 cheaper). We were put on the wait list and told to keep checking. Since, we try to sleep on the flight to Paris, I never upgrade on these flight.

We used the Admirals Club at DFW since we are both Platinum. You do get drink coupons for wine, beer, or mixed drinks (or a big bottle of water); soft drinks are free. The snacks were small bags of pretzels and peanuts, cheese and crackers, apples, and sugar cookies. The cookies are cheese and crackers are not always available; you have to keep checking and then act fast to get any.

The seating at the AC is quite comfortable; newspapers are available, and phones and computers are available. The restrooms are nicer than the public ones at the AA terminal. There are showers but I've never used them.

At CDG you can check in at the premium line and use the AC. The AC is small but quite nice. They have an open bar and refrigerated cabinets with soft drinks, beer, and water. In the morning, they have croissants and pain au chocolates. They also have cookies, fruit, trail mix, and other snack items. In the late morning and early afternoon, they have chilled wine, crackers, and cheese. There are two computers with internet access, a big tv with CNN, and English and French newspapers.

When we were there in October, I used their computers to check on seat availability on my flight. Our upgrades still had not cleared and I watched the coach seats disappear until no more were showing. I also noticed that there were no first class seats for my AA flight from ORD to DFW. Before leaving the AC, we checked again about our upgrades and were told that no seats were available.

We boarded with Group One and sat in our exit row seats in coach. About ten minutes after boarding, a gate agent came and escorted us to our new seats in business; we were never given new boarding passes and no miles were deducted.

The DVD players and Bose headphones are great. The food and wine were quite good, especially the sundaes. We were first served a bowl of warm nuts and crudites (carrots and celery) with a chive dip. We were then served an appetiser with shrimp, smoked salmon, and something else. The salad course was next. I had chicken for my main course. Dessert was ice cream or fruit. The afternoon snack was a huge improvement over what was served in 2003. We had the most scrumptious tomato soup and either a sandwich or a pizza. Fresh baked cookies were served last.

The wine was free and quite yummy. If you want more details, I'll post the menus and wine lists.

We had to fly coach from ORD to DFW but we had the exit row and were still way too full from our Paris flight. I'm fairly certain that our upgrades were not processed and miles deducted because AA could not upgrade us from ORD to DFW.

Our flight in November from CDG to DFW was in business and our miles were deducted. We had the same seats even - bulkhead in center section. The food and wine were quite similar with one big exception. The parsnip soup served as part of the afternoon snack was even more scrumptios than the tomato soup.

Looks like I'll be sitting in coach for a while on international flights since AA instituted the $250 fee for upgrading cheap seats.

Enjoy you trip.

Dorothy01 is offline  
Dec 10th, 2004, 02:25 PM
  #11  
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Dorothy:
Thanks for the great info! Yes, any posting of menu,etc. would be great, and much appreciated. I am so excited about this-- I'm not sure how I'll be able to wait six more months!! Our first trip abroad, and I'll probably spend 100 hours or more planning... I just want it to be perfect for her!
hgh3 is offline  
Dec 10th, 2004, 06:43 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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hgh3, if you live in the DFW area and plan to travel in the future, you should read this thread from flyertalk.com:
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=342145
Gardyloo is online now  
Dec 11th, 2004, 07:30 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,609
I am enjoying this thread a lot. This summer I am flying Business Class for the first time. AA from Chicago to Glasgow.

Thought all I was getting for the extra 30,000 miles was a bigger seat and better food & drink options on the plane.

Keith
Keith is offline  
Dec 11th, 2004, 08:11 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 12,885
This is from a recent flight from UK:


Champagne - Perrier-Jourt "Belle Epoque" Vintage Champagne

White Wines -
Marimar Torres "Don Miguel Vineyard" Sonoma County Chardonnay
Wairau River Marlborough New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc

Red Wines -
Chateau Batailley
Wild Horse Central Coast Pinot Noir

Sherry -
Emilio Lustau Sherry

Dessert Wine -
Graham's Vintage Port

Spirits -
SKYY Vodka, Tanqueray Gin, Bacardi Rum, Glenlivet Single Malt Scotch, Crown Royal Canadian Whiskey, Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey, Maker's Mark Bourbon, Dewar's White Label Scotch Whiskey

Beers -
Heineken, Amstel Light and select US beers. Additional beers may be available on selected international flights.

Brandy and Liqueurs -
Di Saronno Amaretto
Bailey's Irish Cream
Kahlua
Courvoisier V.S.O.P Fine Champagne Cognac


To start -

Warm Roasted Nuts

Appetizer -
Puff Pastry topped with fresh Tomato Slices
Kalamata Olives, caramelized Onions and fresh Basil

Salad -
Fresh seasonal salad greens

&

Bread Basket


Entrees -

Filet Mignon

Horseradish-Crusted Salmon

Farfalle Pasta with Wild Mushroom Sauce

Key West Chicken

Vegetable Plate


The Dessert Cart -

Solton, Bel Paese and Apple with selected Crackers

or

a scoop of Ben&Jerry's Mint Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream


Afternoon Meal -

Smoked Chicken Pizza

Turkey Sandwich


Dessert

Assorted Cookies garnished with fresh Berries




Dine Upon Request

You may choose one of the above complete with Appetizer and specially prepared dessert presented all at once, at any time you wish.



On the way to UK it's basically the same, except instead of snack you get breakfast. Also there are some variations on the entrees and ice cream choices.
AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Dec 13th, 2004, 01:36 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 587
Just the pleasure of sitting in business and drinks does it for me...I do not care about the meals..they taste microwave. I bring my little bag with things of my choice...love the warm towels....
You will enjoy and arrive so relaxed...
miguelgcuadra is offline  

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