Jan092018

My last AA elite LAX Flagship Lounge visit

My last two flights on American Airlines in 2017 as an AAdvantage Platinum elite member were Christmas Eve flights San Jose SJC to Los Angeles LAX and LAX to LHR London Heathrow, arriving in London Christmas Day. Two 500-mile upgrades placed us in First Class for the short SJC to LAX flight segment.

The bad news was our flight departure from SJC had moved up 3 hours from the original flight time I booked. The good news is this meant we had 4 hours in LAX to hang out in the lounge before our flight to London.

LAX Flagship Lounge

LAX American Airlines Flagship Lounge

We received an invitation for the new LAX Flagship Lounge to wait in a newly remodeled comfortable space for our flight to London Heathrow.

AA invitation

Cold bottles of Stella Artois in the lounge frig warmed my heart and helped get the taste of Heineken in a can out of my mouth from the SJC-LAX flight.

Monterey Bay

Crescent shape of Monterey Bay, California

LAX

LAX in SoCal freeway land

My AAdvantage Platinum status did not allow me to check out the Flagship First Dining. February 2017 in Heathrow was my last hurrah as Oneworld Emerald with First Class lounge access.

Flagship First

The food selection in the main Flagship Lounge room was varied and gave us plenty to choose from for a Christmas Eve dining experience.

AA Flagship salmon

Salmon and spicy chicken

AA Flagship vegies

AA Flaship LAX food

There was one TV in a quiet space near the computer center showing NFL Seattle-Dallas and we parked ourselves there for a couple of hours reading news and watching the game.

AA Flagship TV

AA LAX Flagship PCs

American Airlines Flight 136 LAX-London LHR

B777-200

Economy Class on the Boeing 777-200 is 2-5-2. Kelley and I had two side seats in row 36. As usual, I watched movies until I passed out and Kelley slept nearly the entire flight.

Seatguru AA B-772 seat layout

AA 777-200

I watched Dunkirk. War is hell. Baby Driver with Ansel Elgort, an actor I also enjoyed in The Fault in Our Stars. and a Belgian film Dode Hoek (Blind Spot) primarily in Dutch and French language, while giving a gritty impression of Antwerp.

A few hours sleep mid-flight is more than I usually manage on long haul travel.

The movies were entertaining and the flight was uneventful. Just the way I like it.

2017 was my last year as AA elite

The changes to American Airlines AAdvantage mean I will be unlikely to reach Platinum elite again for the foreseeable future with the $6,000 elite qualifying dollars monetary requirement. I flew about 90,000 miles on paid tickets in 2017 and completed 7 round trip trips between California and Europe in 2017. My total spend for airline tickets was less than $3,800 on airfare, while flying through 20 different European airports across the continent from Keflavik, Iceland to Riga, Latvia and Barcelona, Spain to Sofia, Bulgaria.

Only two of my round trip tickets between California and Europe in 2017 were Oneworld flights. More of my 2017 flights were Star Alliance in my quest to earn Aegean Airlines Silver elite in July 2017. My objective is earn Aegean Gold elite by June 2018 with Star Alliance Gold membership benefits and drop Oneworld as an elite program.

Loyalty Traveler – 2017 Flights in Review $3,870 for 95,647 miles on 16 airlines in 16 countries through 26 airports (Jan 9, 2018).

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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