- This article is a travel topic.
American Airlines  is one of the largest airlines in the United States and a founding member of the Oneworld airline alliance. It is the predominant carrier between North America and Latin America and has flights from the US to Western Europe, China, India and Japan.
- Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) is AA's official headquarters and largest hub, with flights to destinations throughout the AA network. Although most of DFW's passengers are connecting, the airport was designed to be most convenient for locals: gates are very close to ticketing and baggage claim, but very far from each other. Fortunately, DFW has a new, fast and clean people mover system which makes two stops in each terminal. The international terminal (Terminal D) is the newest terminal in the airport, while the other terminals are of late-1970s vintage and have had spotty makeovers over the years.
- Chicago (ORD) is also an important hub for AA, handling flights across the US and to Europe and Asia. It is particularly susceptible to delays and cancellations in the winter, which can be good if you don't mind getting bumped and compensated, but can be bad if you're flying on a time-sensitive schedule. However, Chicago is the only AA station with service to China, India and many European destinations.
- Miami (MIA) is AA's main north-south hub: if you're headed to Latin America, you will probably transit through either Miami or DFW. AA's terminal at MIA has been under construction for several years, so you may be in a brand-new part (concourse A and much of concourse D) or a very old part (concourse C and part of concourse D). Check-in, security, customs and immigration at MIA tend to be a hassle, so plan ahead and allot yourself extra time when departing or connecting through the airport.
- New York (JFK) is a major market for AA and handles a number of transatlantic connections, as well as transpacific connections through Tokyo-Narita. The brand new terminal 9 is fully functional and now handling all of AA's traffic.
- St. Louis (STL) became an AA hub following its merger with TWA in 2001. STL's significance in the route network has diminished since then, and if you connect there nowadays, you are most likely flying on one or more regional jets en route.
- San Juan (SJU) is a smaller hub which handles much of AA's traffic in the Caribbean.
- Boeing 777s are used on all transpacific routes, all flights to London, Frankfurt, Madrid, and on flights to South America, such as Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo. Domestic routes include Chicago-Dallas-Forth Worth and Los angeles-Miami. These are the only three-class aircraft in AA's fleet (besides the handful of 767-200's described below). All of the Boeing 777 aircraft are equiped with the "Flagship Suites," for First Class seating. These are enclosed seats that offer a fully-flat bed, personal on-demand video enterntainment, lots of privacy and large workspace. "Flagship Suites" are similar to the first class suites on British Airways and many Asian carriers. Business Class features angled-lie flat "Next-Generation Business Class" (NGBC) seats, which are nearly identical to those found on found on the AA Boeing 767's. All seats come with personal on-demand video as well as a large work table.
- Boeing 767-300s  are used on many long-range routes to Europe and South America. They are two-class aircraft. Business class comes with lie-flat NGBC seats, and video on demand, coach just has overhead video screens.
- Boeing 757s  are used on many medium-range routes, particularly to and from Miami and the Northeast, and for a handful of single-class seasonal transatlantic flights as well. They have overhead televisions but no personal video. These aircraft are currently being updated with new interiors, featuring LCD screens and new seats.
- McDonnell Douglas MD-80s  are the mainstay of AA's medium-range fleet, and you are exceedingly likely to board one (or two) if you are connecting in Dallas or Chicago. Economy class on the MD-80 is the most spacious economy in the AA fleet, with an extra inch of seat pitch and width in comparison to most other AA aircraft. Seating is five-abreast (2-3), meaning you are less likely to get a middle seat. First class on an MD-80 features large, reclining seats. However, there is no in-flight entertainment on the MD-80s. Because the engines are at the back of the aircraft, first class is very quiet and the back rows are very loud.
- Boeing 737s  are used on some short and medium range flights. These aircraft have overhead video screens and feature similar First Class seats to those in the MD-80's.
- Airbus A300s  are used on some high-density routes, particularly from/to Miami and the Caribbean. They have the highest passenger capacity in the fleet (16 First and 251 economy), and are fitted with mostly economy class seating. Fortunately, they are not used on longer-range flights, so you don't have to put up with them for more than a couple of hours at a time.
- Boeing 767-200s  provide three-class service on flights from JFK to Los Angeles and San Francisco as well as JFK-Miami. These have a much older first class cabin than other AA planes, although it is quite comfortable. First Class is currently being updated with new fully-flat seats.
- American Eagle, which operates AA's feeder flights, mainly uses single-class Embraer regional jets, along with some Canadair regional jets (CRJ-700), and a handful of tiny Saab 340s and ATR's based mainly in Miami
Frequent flyer program
AA's frequent flyer program is called AAdvantage.
AAdvantage members earn miles on all oneworld carriers, as well as, Air Pacific (Fiji), Air Sahara (India), Air Tahiti Nui, Alaska Airlines, Brussels Airlines (Belgium), El Al, Gulf Air, Hawaiian Airlines, Mexicana, and TAM (Brazil). For the current list of Advantage Mileage Earning Airlines refer to here: 
American has two basic types of award ticket: MileSAAver, which is subject to blackout dates and capacity restrictions, and AAnytime, which is not subject to blackout dates or capacity restrictions.
AAnytime tickets generally cost twice as many miles as MileSAAver tickets. International markets have "peak" and "off-peak" mile costs for economy class travel which skew this basic formula slightly.
An informal Wall Street Journal study in 2007 concluded that American was one of the easiest US major airlines on which to redeem miles for free travel.
AAdvantage miles can also be redeemed for car rentals and hotel stays.
AAdvantage elite status is determined by the number of miles or segments you fly on an AA, AA codeshare, Alaska Airlines or oneworld flight. You can also earn status based on your accrued elite status points: you get 1 point per mile traveled on most discounted economy tickets, 1.5 points per mile on full-fare economy and premium class tickets, and 0.5 points per mile on deeply discounted economy tickets. The basic tiers are: 
- Gold (25,000 miles/points or 30 segments) - Oneworld Ruby
- Platinum (50,000 miles/points or 60 segments) - Oneworld Sapphire
- Executive Platinum (100,000 miles/points or 100 segments) - Oneworld Emerald
AAdvantage is unique among frequent flyer programs in its challenge program. A passenger can earn Gold or Platinum status by calling AAdvantage, asking to take the challenge, and then racking up a certain number of elite status points within a certain period of time. As of October 2007, 5,000 points in 3 months were required for the Gold challenge and 10,000 points for the Platinum challenge.  However, a passenger can only attempt a status challenge once; it is intended to bring new people into elite status, not as a method of retaining elite status. So while you can easily make Platinum with a single trans-pacific flight in economy class, you will have to follow that up with much more mileage in order to retain your status for more than a year.
AA's main lounge is called the Admirals Club.  Membership costs $450 for the first year and $400 each year thereafter; you can also buy membership with AAdvantage miles, and obtain discounts based on your AAdvantage elite status.
Oneworld Sapphire and Emerald members can use Admirals Clubs when travelling on a Oneworld itinerary that day; AAdvantage Platinum and Executive Platinum members can only take advantage of this when traveling on an international itinerary.
American also has a special first class lounge, called the Flagship Lounge, in Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, London-Heathrow and most recently New York - Kennedy John F. Kennedy International Airport. Access to the Flagship Lounge is available if you are traveling in first class to/from Europe, Asia, Central America, South America or Mexico City, or if you are traveling in first class on a coast-to-coast transcontinental flight (in the case of LAX or SFO), or if you are a Oneworld Emerald member and otherwise eligible to use the Admirals Club. For first class, you must be booked in F or Z inventory, but this does include AAdvantage awards.
London Heathrow also has an Arrivals Lounge open to all arriving first and business class passengers. Economy passengers can also use the lounge by paying US$50 plus VAT at the door. The lounge has showers, drinks, gym equipment and a business center.
This page was last edited at 16:04, on 4 March 2009 by Anonymous user(s) of Wikitravel. Based on work by Joichi Koizumi, Wikitravel user(s) Cacahuate and Anonymous user(s) of Wikitravel.