Picture of Gerard Arpey
We’d love to hear what you
think about our airline and
our employees.
Please write to us at

Want to sign up for free e-mail
notification of Gerard Arpey's column
or to see past columns? Click here!

At American Airlines, we have always taken pride in the catalytic role we play in the global economy. Aviation supports, directly and indirectly, millions of jobs around the world, and it makes possible an incalculable amount of economic activity that would otherwise be impossible. As a big company, we’re very aware that our actions impact a lot of people. At the same time, we’re equally aware that much, if not most, of the dynamism, innovation, and job creation in the economy comes from small- and medium-size businesses. So in this challenging economic time, we want to do as much as we can to help those enterprises manage their travel and get the most value from their travel dollars.

With that goal in mind, we offer a series of products that make up what we call the American Airlines Business Suite. The flagship product of the suite is Business ExtrAA, a no-cost program that rewards companies for doing business with us. Member companies earn Business ExtrAA points (redeemable for round-trip tickets to anywhere we fl y), upgrades, memberships or One-Day Passes to the Admirals Club, and much more whenever their employees fl y American, American Eagle, or AmericanConnection. Awards can be used to reduce travel expenses or as incentives for customers and employees. The beauty of this program is that while the company earns Business ExtrAA points, its employees continue to earn their personal AAdvantage miles. Of course, when it comes to business travel, the ability to fl y with little notice is essential, and with our AAnytime award option, any flight that has available seats is yours for award bookings, even on the day of departure. You can also earn Business ExtrAA points when you ship with AA Cargo. Enrollment in the Business ExtrAA program is easy and free, and it can be done online. You’ll receive an account number as soon as you enroll, allowing your company to enjoy the benefits of membership right away.

We’ve also teamed with American Express in order to offer you the American Express/ Business ExtrAA Corporate Card. Qualifying companies can earn Business ExtrAA points on all card purchases and a cash rebate of up to four percent on all American Airlines published fares. What’s more, the card’s Savings at Work program provides automatic cash rebates on everyday business purchases with leading suppliers.

The Business ExtrAA program makes sense for almost any company -- even those with relatively modest travel budgets. At the same time, if your employees fly frequently and often buy full-fare last-minute tickets, our AAirpass program might make sense for you. Available for businesses and individuals, AAirpass is a prepaid program that provides discounted fares on last-minute travel, offering flexibility as well as VIP benefits. Members enjoy the convenience of being able to travel anytime, instant VIP status (which includes priority check-in, boarding, and security, where available), free Admirals Club membership, companion travel, and more. The American Airlines Business Suite also includes group-travel solutions, incentive-travel options for customers and employees, and meeting space in our Admirals Club Executive Centers and conference rooms.

We’re working hard to make travel more enjoyable, more productive, and more rewarding for small- and medium-size businesses. We understand that, especially in this challenging economic environment, air travel represents an investment -- in your business, in your career, and even in your quality of life -- and we’re determined to help you get the greatest possible return on that investment. I hope you’ll visit www.aa.com/business to learn more. Thanks for flying with us today, and have a great trip!

Signature of Gerard Arpey

Gerard J. Arpey
Chairman &; CEO
American Airlines