First watch this video to decide whether you think its really the only true first class hello, jet setters im jeff, brooks from right now, im at new yorks kennedy international airport, its time for me to head out to la im flying with american airlines. I hope youll join me as we check out this amazing experience. Lets go, get checked in itll, take us five hours and 10 minutes to make the nearly 2 500 mile flight at an altitude of 36 000 feet when youre traveling in first class. Your premium experience begins the moment you arrive at jfk flagship. First passengers dont trouble themselves with this vast open space. No, instead, they step behind a nearby semi secret door and enter a dedicated check in area from there. Its a quick tsa security check and youll find yourself out here in the stunning american airlines terminal Music right now. Domestic flagship first is available on flights between jfk and san francisco, los angeles and orange county. California, in addition, triple 7 300s flying between lax and miami offer the service. But what is it well, in addition to the dedicated check in counter, we saw flagship first cabins are different from most domestic first class seats and that they offer passengers the opportunity to experience direct aisle access from each seat. In the past. You would have also had access to dedicated lounges with upgraded a la carte dining. Unfortunately, the flagship first lounge and dining is not running as of the publication of this video, but i did have access to the flagship lounge, which was operating as a less exclusive admirals club in terminal 8.

. But before i checked that out, i wanted to head over there to our gate area to see the unique airbus a321t that would take us across the north american continent. Traveling in new york always feels good and being at jfk is a real highlight. The a321t is unique in that its a true three class narrow body airplane. Here in the u.s there are economy seats laid out in a 3 3 configuration late flat business class seats. In a 2 2 configuration and late flat, first class seats laid out in a 1 1 configuration were going to take a walk through the entire cabin. When were on our way to see it all? Well, i guess uh im pretty early and as nice as that gate area is, i think the lounge is even nicer. Despite the fact this wasnt being operated as a true flagship. First lounge, it was still a nice place to relax. It was not hard to find a place to Music sit. The food selections which were set for breakfast were minimal, especially when you compare them to what delta offers over their sky club in terminal 4.. This is disappointing when you consider what a differentiator the food service used to be for flagship first, but these are different times: Music. There was a full bar and even showers magazines are but a memory. Now the lounge filled up with time and the buffet changed over to lunch at about 11.

. It was still basic, but a bit more appealing to me anyway. Music, this dining room was closed. Its a great lounge, very nice, but not quite like it, was in the before times. I flew flagship first a few years ago. It was a completely different experience. Hopefully not too much has changed in the sky, but well find out in a few minutes, and those few minutes pass quickly lets get on this bird. I made my way back over to the other side, stopping along the way to admire the large number of triple sevens. American has dedicated to domestic flights, which brings up a good point because theres not much international flying going on these days. Youll have chances to fly in unique cabins on wide body aircraft domestically, but those still arent quite the same as this dedicated narrow body airplane im about to board, i am so excited to try it out. Lets go get on board. There was just enough time to watch the final bags get loaded. Gate area is a little bit more busy now, which makes sense, were getting close to boarding time. Boarding was on time and the first class cabin is arranged in a unique one. One configuration my seat. 5F would do the trick on this five hour flight. The seat is massive and frankly, i would have been comfortable sitting here for a flight twice as long theres storage in front of you and beside you, passengers get a plush, pillow and blanket theres.

A sanitizing wipe of course headphones, which subscribers will not be surprised to hear. I didnt really use hashtag bose qc20s. There was a bottle of water and an amenity kit which well open up later. There are plenty of seat adjustments, plugs and a remote control, theres a universal plug, as well as headphone, jacks, usb power and some kind of adapter from the mid 90s. I still dont know what this does. It was very humid outside and, as a result, water vapor formed in the cabin good afternoon today, here at the los angeles area, probably cloudy skies at 65 degrees, theres, even a step to make it easier to reach the overhead bin and speaking of those bins. There were plenty for the 10 passengers in the cabin Music. Just before the door closed. The dedicated flight attendant came back and asked me a question i hadnt heard in more than a year. Would you like something to drink before we depart? I was at first speechless, but somehow i found the words gin tonic and please Music cheers. Now. I recognize its completely indulgent and probably even selfish, but being offered a pre departure. Beverage or pdb was a reminder of the past. It was something i didnt even know how much i missed Music. We were off the ground in no time leaving new york behind with dreams of hollywood coursing through the cabin Music. The water vapor is completely normal. On a hot humid day, like the one i took this trip and as we climbed through 10 000 feet, i looked through those clouds to check out the ifv.

The inflight entertainment was in a word terrible. I couldnt get it to work and then it finally crashed completely. I asked for help and our flight attendant told me how to reset it. I had to press a button for 15 seconds. I found americans ife to be the least reliable in the sky. The touch screen features are difficult for me to make work and the remotes seem to be sticky a lot of the time once the ife reset was finally complete and i was able to navigate it. There were plenty of options i just had to be ginger with how i interacted with it. The amenity kit included all of the basics youd want in a flight like this theres, an armrest that has to be stowed for taxi takeoff and landing, but its really nice, because it makes it possible to get out of the seat even if youre, using the tray Table to eat or work speaking of the tray table, its large by domestic standards and coupled with a huge shelf beside you, its possible to work eat and if you can get the ifv working watch, entertainment all. At the same time, internet access was available, but i couldnt get it to work on my laptop. This was completely user error because my phone connected with no problem, i paid the 22 dollars to access it because i had emails. I really needed to deal with. It was fast and reliable once i connected.

Perhaps a pass could be included with a first class ticket, but maybe thats asking for too much. I dont know. Anyway. I settled into my seat, tested the supplied headphones enjoyed of the fruits of the drinks service and went back to using my own headphones. Lunch was soon served, youll receive an email a few days before your flight and will be invited to pre order. I picked the short rib, but other options included a grain and greens bowl, rigatoni or sea bass. That said, look at all of the dietary specific meal choices available, thats, Music, incredible. The short rib was tasty and came with barbecue sauce along with vegetables, a small salad, bread and dessert. When i flew flagship first, a few years ago i was told the food was the same in business and first just plated differently. Is that still the case? If you know, please leave a comment below again: this is a unique airplane in the u.s, so i thought id take a stroll through the cabin. The airplane has 36 main cabin seats in a 3 3 configuration each with 31 inches of pitch and between 17 and 18 inches of width. There are another 36 main cabin extra seats theyre, just like the regular economy seats, but with more pitch topping off at 35 inches. The 20 flagship business seats are 19 inches wide and arranged in a 2 2 configuration. They offer 75 inches of flat bed length and those 10 open, suites like mine and flagship first yield 21 inches of width and up to 82 and a half inches of flatbed length.

This was a daytime flight, so i was not gon na sleep, but in an effort to show you the fully flat seat. I set up my bed considering this is a narrow body airplane. This is like a super comfortable bed, its um its pretty wide, and then the footwell is really comfortable its the herringbone design. It just just really works in this airplane. This is a really nice first class product. I wish more carriers would do this up front throughout the flight. Youll find sweet and savory snacks laid out its worth. Noting you really will want to bring your own headphones. American collects them 30 minutes before landing and if youre, in the middle of some good content, that can be pretty disappointing, lets, take a look at the jeb score ill rate, this flight on five factors each from zero to five stars. Well, look at the lounge, the seat, the food, the ife and the service. This unscientific approach i have to comparing flights is something ive been doing for a while and if i learned anything from the transcon throwdown from a few years ago, its tough to compare a true first class experience like this, with the business class experience from other airlines And thats, why? I always say this is subjective, but here goes first, the lounge it wasnt. What once was and with fewer first class seats than ever before. I cannot fault american for closing the first class lounge, but the lounge just wasnt as nice, as others that other airlines are offering right now, when i think about, for example, honolulu a non hub for united its a significantly nicer club than than this one im.

One of americans main hubs, so sorry this earns the airline two stars. Second, the seat, its nothing short of incredible and while it doesnt have the door that some delta one suites offer, i find that anything short of a fully enclosed suite like an emirates triple seven, is a bit of a gimmick anyway, so this seat earns a solid Five stars now the food it was very tasty and filling, and i loved having access to snacks up front throughout the flight. Thats a true first class experience. This was five stars. The ifv was was terrible, its always been bad. The screen was big, but jetblue wins there. The one in the mint studio is even bigger. Look. This ife earns one star because at least it eventually worked. The service was great, our flight attendant was fantastic. She was proactive and friendly. She reminded me of what service used to be like service earns five stars on this flight, so that leaves american airlines flagship first service on the a321t with 18 out of 25 stars. Overall, this was a really nice way to cross the country. It still felt special to fly in a true first class cabin, but if i had the choice of a321s to fly on this route, youre, probably gon na, find me on board jetblue.