This article is part of our Trip Report – Our Summer Holiday in Dubrovnik and Beyond
For our transatlantic flights between Philadelphia (PHL) and Prague (PRG), we flew Business Class in American Airlines 767-300 planes. We were very happy that Systemwide Upgrades (SWUs) cleared on both transatlantic legs of our trip, allowing us to fly in style and arrive more rested at our destinations. This is a bit of a dated product, but it was still a nice treat, and this was a particularly good configuration for couples like us who like to converse and watch entertainment together when we fly.
For veteran travelers, flying in Business Class may be old hat. But it’s still a fresh new experience for Philly and me, and probably for plenty of Middle Age Miles readers. So, we wanted to post a review as part of this Trip Report, to give our less-experienced readers a better idea of what to expect in this Business Class product.
Flights and Times
Our outbound transatlantic flight from PHL-to-PRG was:
- AA 52
- Depart PHL 6:45 pm on Friday, 8/3/2018
- Arrive PRG 9:20 am on Saturday, 8/4/2018
Our return transatlantic flight from PRG-to-PHL was:
- AA 53
- Depart PRG 11:30 am on Saturday, 8/11/2018
- Arrive PHL 3:20 pm on Saturday, 8/11/2018
Business Cabin Configuration
Our AA 767-300’s Business Class cabins were configured with 7 rows of 1-2-1 seating. Here’s a diagram from SeatGuru, so you can see it visually:
As you can see from the diagram, each seat has an oversized armrest/small countertop on one side of the seat, and seats are staggered. On window seats in even-numbered rows, the oversized armrest is between the passenger and the aisle, giving the passenger extra privacy, whereas on odd-numbered rows, the passenger is immediately adjacent to the aisle, with the oversized armrest between the passenger and the window. If I were choosing a window seat, I’d definitely try for an even-numbered row!
The center seats are great for couples, as you’re pretty close to one another without any dividers. It’s easy to talk, and it’s easy to put a tablet on the countertop so you can watch a movie on it together. We don’t know how many people are like us, but on our flights, we prefer to pass the time by watching downloaded movies or tv shows together on our personal iPad. We’re always a little scared to rely on the functionality, selection and availability of in-flight entertainment systems!
Each row of center seats is staggered so that one person is immediately adjacent to the aisle, and one person has some privacy because of the oversized armrest. In even-numbered rows, the person in the “G” seat on the right has the extra privacy; in odd-numbered rows, the person in the “D” seat on the left has the extra privacy. I always book the seats so that Philly is in the extra-privacy seat, if at all possible.
On these flights, we had center seats on both flights, Row 3 on the outbound and Row 7 on the return. On each flight, Philly had the “D” seat with extra privacy, while I had the “G” seat.
These pictures will give you a little bit of an idea what the cabin looks like. First, here’s our picture from Row 3 on the outbound flight:
And here’s what it looked like from Row 7 on the return flight:
The seats are lie-flat (or very close to flat), with enough legroom so that I could lie down and sleep comfortably at 6’1″.
Here’s a tour in pictures:
There is no built-in in-flight entertainment in AA’s 767-300 planes. Instead, in Business Class, each seat has a portable tablet. On our flight, the tablets were already in place when we boarded, in a slot in the seatback in front of us. The slot has a fold-down table that can cover the tablet if it’s up, or serve as an extra table/countertop when it’s down in order to permit viewing the tablet.
In addition to the tablet, AA supplied nice Bose headsets for our in-flight enjoyment.
We didn’t actually use the tablets or the Bose headsets provided by AA, preferring to use our own device to watch content that we’d downloaded. In my case, that was probably a very good thing. My tablet’s battery was at 16% when we boarded, and it took a fair bit of playing with the tablet and plug to get it to start charging.
As is standard on AA, flight attendants came around to collect the tablets and Bose headsets about 45-60 minutes prior to landing.
At each seat was a nice Cole Haan amenity kit. The kit contained socks, tissues, a dental kit, a pen, and a “Refreshing Travel Kit” with C.O. Bigelow toiletries. The kit container itself opened up into a nice drawstring bag. As usual, we didn’t use the amenity kit on the plane, but the dental kit came in quite handy when we arrived in Prague before our bags did!
On each flight, we were served one full meal that included a first course with an appetizer and salad, a main course, and dessert. On our outbound PHL-PRG flight, we also received a breakfast snack as we neared arrival (not pictured). And on our return PRG-PHL flight, we were offered another “light meal” as we neared Philadelphia (we declined, so no pictures of that).
I have the taste of a 7-year-old, so I won’t comment on the food except to say that the desserts were delicious. Here are a few pictures:
On the PHL-PRG return flight, I remembered to take pictures of the menu, the first course, and dessert – but not the main course:
And finally, as the menu notes, on both flights the galley was stocked with a variety of snacks. We took full advantage of this to munch off-and-on during both flights. I’m very partial to the Nature Valley Almond Butter Granola Cups!
We’re always hesitant to review service on flights, as it’s so much of a your-mileage-may-vary (YMMV) situation. But there’s one story that I’ll tell about this flight that made my blood boil, which I’ll share here.
On our outbound flight, we were connecting in Philadelphia – DFW to PHL, then PHL to PRG. We had a 1-hour 40-minute connection, which should have been fine, given that we wouldn’t have to collect bags or re-clear security.
Unfortunately, our initial DFW-PHL flight was delayed by weather, by almost an hour and a half. Needless to say, this made for an extremely tight connection in PHL. And to compound things, we arrived into Terminal B but were departing from Terminal A. They’re connected airside, but it’s a solid 10-minute walk even when you’re hustling.
Philly and I were in Row 9 for DFW-PHL, but Middle Age Miles sister Cymber was about 15 rows back. We had talked to our flight attendant on the DFW-PHL flight, and we knew that there were several people from our flight who were connecting on to PRG (at the time, we knew the exact number, but I can’t recall it for sure now but we’ll call it 9 people).
When we arrived in PHL, Philly and I hurried over to Terminal A for the PHL-PRG flight. When we arrived, the gate agent let us board but commented, “you’re lucky, we were supposed to close the door 2 minutes ago.” I took the time to tell all 3 people at the gate that we were from AA 1798 from Dallas, that we were delayed by weather, that there were 7 other people from our flight who were on their way over and would be at the gate within 5 minutes including my sister – and could they please hold the plane for them.
That didn’t happen. Within a minute or two after Philly and I boarded, the flight was closed. Cymber and several others from our flight didn’t make it. We then proceeded to sit still at the gate for 20-30 minutes, which maddening in and of itself. (On the bright side, at least we had a few minutes to help Cymber by searching for alternate flights, helping guide her on what to do, and enlisting my good friend JBTx to help her once we pushed back.)
But beyond that, it was a conversation amongst the crew that absolutely upset me. The same gate agent who had told us we were late was talking to a flight attendant in the galley in front of me (and I was in Row 3, the second row, so close enough to overhear clearly). The gate agent said, and this is very close if not an exact quote, “We should have closed the door sooner so we could upgrade more non-revs into Business.” I tell you, it took every bit of restraint in my body to not step up there and give the gate agent a very large piece of my mind.
Ok, deep breath.
In other news, Cymber re-routed from PHL to LHR, had a several-hour layover there in which she managed to go into town, ride a hop on-hop off bus for a while, and then get back to LHR in time to b-a-r-e-l-y catch her flight on to PRG. She ultimately arrived into PRG about 12 hours late, basically trading a day in Prague for her quick bus ride around London.
Our bags, of course, didn’t make the connection in PHL but fortuantely ended up on the same flight as Cymber. She was very kind to pick them up and, with the help of her Welcome Pickups driver, bring them to our hotel in Prague.
So, our Summer Holiday started off with quite the adventure, a bit of inconvenience, and an extremely rude AA gate agent – but at least this didn’t ruin anything about the trip.
Bonus Pics of the Terminal B/C Admirals Club at PHL
Fortunately, our return flights went much more smoothly, and we had a little time to catch our breath in the Admirals Club in PHL during the connection on our return flights. There are 3 Admirals Clubs at PHL, and we were in the Terminal B/C Club, located on the third floor between Terminals B and C.
This Club was large and not crowded when we were there mid-afternoon on a Saturday. Its look and offerings were standard (read: somewhat dated but fine), so we only took a couple of pictures and won’t spend time on a full review.
Here are the pictures:
We hope you’ve enjoyed our review of our flights in AA 767-300 Business Class between PHL and PRG.
Do you have any thoughts or tips to add with respect to AA 767-300 Business Class? What do you think of our AA gate agent at PHL and his comment? Please let us know in the Comments!
At Middle Age Miles, we love to bring you travel, credit card and points-and-miles information that you can use to help make your travel dreams come true. To see all of our tips and insights, please Like and follow us on social media at:
Please share and re-tweet our posts and tell all of your friends about Middle Age Miles! Thank you!