American forever changed the way airlines do business when it developed the first ever passenger services system almost 50 years ago. Today, American continues to lead the industry with a significant investment and commitment to technology and innovation to enhance the customer experience. From an enhanced AA.com to Self-Service Check-In across the country, American is evolving its technology to meet the changing needs of its customers and the changing demands of the airline industry. At the forefront of technology is AA.com, recently named the World's Leading Airline Website by the World Travel Awards. Considered by many to be the established leader in domestic airline websites, AA.com offers more convenience, more options and more tools to empower customers and bring them back time and again to purchase air travel and more. The airline has consistently been recognized as a leader in innovation – most recently ranked at No. 11 in the InformationWeek 500, a ranking of the most innovative companies in the country.
AA.com – The Online Face of American
With more than 1.6 million site visits per day, AA.com is American's largest distribution channel and the best place to do business online with the airline, 24-7. Customers who book at AA.com get a lowest-fare guarantee (www.aa.com/guarantee) and never pay an online booking fee. AA.com has twice received the World Travel Award for World's Leading Airline Internet Site and has received multiple site awards from various organizations. For additional information, go to AA.com.
Mobile defines today's connected traveler and is the driving force behind technology that American is developing today to simplify travel for the customer.
American Airlines Travel App: With more than 3 million downloads, American's travel app is developed with a focus on the unique attributes of a specific mobile device, which makes for simpler and timelier updates as new features are released. This also allows American to stay ahead of the competition in app innovations. American's app is available on more platforms with more functionality than that of any other airline, including:
- iPhone, iPad and iPod touch
- Barnes & Noble NOOK Color Readers Tablet
- Windows Phone 7
- Amazon Kindle Fire
Mobile Boarding: American Airlines now offers the mobile boarding pass option to travelers departing on American Airlines and American Eagle flights from more than 77 cities, including 10 international airports. When customers check in for their flight using AA.com – either the desktop or mobile versions – they have the option to receive their boarding passes on their mobile device. If they select this option, they receive an e-mail with an Internet link to the boarding pass with a 2-D barcode, which they can scan at TSA security checkpoints and select American Airlines gates. Go to AA.com/mobile for a list of cities.
WiFi Widget, now available on mobile devices, allows customers to find out, up to 24 hours in advance, if their flights are Wi-Fi equipped. Customers simply type aa.com/wifiwidget into their phone's Internet browser and see if their aircraft is connected. In-flight connectivity is a valuable tool for business and leisure passengers.
Flight Status Notification: The Web-based technology enables travelers to receive automated flight status information – such as arrival time or gate information – on a variety of mobile devices via email or voice mail.
With more than 800 machines at airports around the world, American Airlines customers prefer the ease of use and quick transaction times these devices provide. By using the self-service check-in machines, American's domestic passengers can now check in and have their boarding pass in hand in as little as 72 seconds! Nearly half of American's domestic customers now use self-service machines and approximately 80 percent of all domestic customers use either curb-side or self-service, or check in from home at AA.com.
The newest versions of self-service machines feature passport scanners, credit card readers and barcode scanners, all of which enable customers to check in more quickly – both for domestic and international flights. American is also installing self-service machines in all domestic American Eagle and American stations that currently do not have them, giving American 100 percent coverage in the U.S. In addition to expediting the check-in process, the machines provide customers with a variety of value-added options such as the ability to purchase upgrades and Admirals Club day passes, change a seat or confirm a flight change.
Customers traveling to international destinations also have the convenience of using self-service check-in machines at most airports across the world. With one easy swipe of a passport or credit card through the machine's reader, travelers are able to quickly select their itinerary and check in for their flights. Customers who do not have a machine-readable passport can simply follow the prompts on the screen to enter the information manually.
AAdvance Bag Check Program
This convenient service allows passengers to enjoy the ease of checking in and dropping off their luggage for American flights at remote locations, including onboard cruise ships and at hotels and convention centers. Travelers can check in and drop off their luggage for domestic flights up to 24 hours in advance at the AAdvance Bag Check station. Baggage is then transported directly to the departure airport and passengers do not have to deal with their luggage until they land at their final destination. Besides checking in their luggage, passengers also receive their boarding passes, allowing them to go directly to security screening when they arrive at the airport. For a complete list of locations, visit aa.com/advancebagcheck.
As part of a continuing effort to enhance the travel experience, American Airlines was the first U.S. airline to launch Aircell's Internet Broadband Service, Gogo, as a trial on Boeing 767-200 aircraft, which fly primarily transcontinental flights. Specifically, routes included are New York to San Francisco, Los Angeles and Miami.
Gogo, which is available in all classes for a fee, provides full Internet access to customers with Wi-Fi-enabled personal devices such as laptops, smartphones and PDAs. This includes access to the Web, personal IM and email accounts, and VPN access to corporate email and networks. Gogo connection speeds are similar to wireless mobile broadband services on the ground. Gogo is designed to provide data service only, which inhibits the use of cell phone and Voice Over IP (Internet Protocol) services that are against American Airlines policy.
Additionally, Gogo service provides:
- Complimentary access to AA.com including services such as gates & times, fares and AAdvantage information
- Compatibility with the most common VPNs used to access corporate intranets and email
- Seamless coverage within the continental U.S. from above 10,000 feet
Travelers will find that some seats are equipped with a DC power "cigarette lighter" style outlet delivering 15 volts of direct current. On most American aircrafts, a power outlet is available at each seat in First and Business class, as well as selected rows in the Coach cabin. Outlets may be used to operate laptop computers, CD/DVD players, and charge cell phones and other devices with a maximum 75-watt capacity. Outlets are located on the seat console or mounted to the seat frame below the seat cushion. Passengers can look for the "lightning bolt" symbol on the overhead bin rows containing powerport-equipped seats. For detailed powerport locations by aircraft type, visit the Our Planes section on AA.com. This information can also be found in the AA Timetable.
Cell Phone Policy
American knows how important it is to keep in touch with family, friends and business associates while traveling. To maximize the traveler's schedule, American became the first airline to offer increased "talk time" on the ground, allowing more minutes to connect with friends and family. On all departing flights worldwide, cell phones, laptop computers, two-way pagers and PDAs can be used until the aircraft door is closed and as soon as the flight lands. Use of cell phones is not allowed during flight per Federal Communication Commission rules.
In-flight Satellite Phones
Customers can turn flight time into quality time by arranging meetings, checking voice mail or calling home. Worldwide satellite communications are available on American Airlines' Boeing 777 and Boeing 767 aircraft almost anytime while flying over North America and worldwide.
American Airlines was the first major U.S. airline to offer passengers the option to use credit when paying for food, alcoholic beverages and headsets. Credit and debit cards are now accepted using state-of-the-art wireless handheld devices that quickly swipe the card and provide a receipt for the transaction.
American's "Remember Me" feature makes it easier and faster for AAdvantage members to access their travel information. Upcoming itineraries are available within a few seconds at the beginning of the call to AA Reservations, so travelers can receive their personal flight information and be on their way, bypassing navigation through the automated menu. With Remember Me, registered AAdvantage members who call from a pre-registered phone number will be recognized every time they call AA Reservations from that phone number. Up to three phone numbers can be "remembered" for each AAdvantage member, so whether travelers are calling from work, home or their cell, the information they need is provided quickly and conveniently.