In quite a surprising announcement today, American Airlines has said they will be taking their flagship 777-300ER off the daily Los Angeles – Sydney route and will be replacing it with a 787-9. The schedule will stay exactly the same.

This is quite a major move for the carrier. When they first announced services to Sydney, they heavily promoted their upgraded First Class experience, this was with help from Neil Perry and Qantas. However, the 787 doesn’t feature a First cabin instead it features 30 Business Class seats, 21 Premium Economy seats, 36 Main Cabin Extra seats and 198 Economy seats.

For passengers in Business Class, I consider the aircraft switch an improvement. The 787-9 features the airlines’ latest B/E Super Diamond seats. I’ve flown the product and found it excellent.

American Airlines 787-9 Business Class

This is now the second carrier to be flying Super Diamond seats to the United States from Australia, the first being Virgin Australia.

American Airlines 787-9 Business Class

Why Is American doing this?

Gary Leff from View From The Wing is reporting that the airline is doing this to show the DOT (Department of transportation) that they will stop offering large amounts of seats to and from the pacific. This is obviously to push them to accept the joint venture with Qantas.

Funnily enough this morning I wrote an article about how both airlines are drastically cutting the earning rates for EQM’s/Status Credits. It’s quite funny to watch the back and forward behaviour from both carriers and I’m interested to see if Qantas will pull out of anywhere or reduce capacity, maybe SFO?

I’m pretty sure both CEO’s aren’t smiling right now…

Doug Parker and Alan Joyce in AA First (Image – Qantas)

It’ll be an interesting time ahead and I’m sure there will be a few unexpected surprises…

Featured Image – Qantas