American Airlines recently upgraded their onboard amenities for international Business and First Class passengers. In addition to updated blankets and duvets, First Class customers also now receive a quilted bed topper, slippers and pajamas. Both Business and First passengers receive the same amenity kit – newly redesigned featuring the legendary Eames Dot Pattern – which I will review below. For a better description of each category, and the 7-point scale for scoring, please review my introduction post here.

Bag/Container: It’s a black nylon zipper bag designed exclusively for American by Eames Office®. A small metal tag with the American Airlines eagle logo is centrally affixed on the front and a small fabric Eames logo is sewn into the bright orange single compartment bag also adorned with the Eames Dot Pattern. The kit is well made with absolutely no defects and reusability in my mind is high. Nicely done, American and Eames. Score: 5

Skin Care: American partnered with Dermalogica to provide skin care products for this kit including an active moist lotion and multivitamin hand and nail treatment. The lotion says it contains no artificial fragrance or color, but I did detect a very light and pleasant “clean” scent. The hand lotion is scentless and absorbs quickly, but does leave your fingertips a touch greasy. The brandless lip balm is effective and has a very subtle mint taste. Finally, a scentless moist towelette rounds out the skin care items inside the kit. Score: 5

Oral Care: American’s previous amenity kit scored well in this category, but I’m totally disappointed this time around. A small bristled mini toothbrush with a plastic cover and the smallest tube of Colegate toothpaste I’ve ever seen were the only items inside. I prefer full-sized toothbrushes and that tiny tube of toothpaste is difficult to work with and lacks sufficient quantity. Also, I feel mints and mouthwash should be standard items for a premium cabin amenity kit. Score: 3

Comfort Items: The standard eyeshade & sock combo are banded together with a paper strap and the eyeshades have an adjustable Velcro strap, so it’s easy to come up the most comfortable fit. For single-use, the socks are fine, but aren’t the most durably made. The earplugs are soft and effective and the package of facial tissues is always handy to have at your seat. Now that American offers pajamas and slippers in First Class, and slippers in Business Class, I’ve bumped the score up to 6. Had these new items not been available, the score would have been 4.  Score: 6

Intangibles: The unique design of the kit really makes a statement of luxury and elegance in my opinion, particularly over the previous version. I like it when subtle branding is incorporated and the AA metal plate and the Eames label noting the bag was designed exclusively for American Airlines add to the appeal of this kit. Score: 5

Total score & comments:

Besides the oral care category, American definitely improved from their previous version. I love the bag and will likely rotate it in and use it as my amenity kit I always have with me when I fly. They included a pen, which is always handy. The product information card provided some background into Eames and included a 20% off discount offer for Dermalogica products purchased online. Nice improvement, American… your score of 4.75 is well earned.

Finally, many thanks to Daraius at Million Mile Secrets for donating this amenity kit to me for review on my blog.

Posted by Darren | 9 Comments

9 Responses to “Amenity Kit Review: American Airlines Premium First & Business Class (Fall 2011)”

  1. PedroNY says:

    Thank you doing this review. Looking forward to trying on those new PJs early next year.

    Cheers,

    PedroNY

  2. BIGGERdaddy says:

    What about the PJs? How are they compared to others?

  3. Darren says:

    Unfortunately I didn’t have a pair of those to review, only the kit this time :-(

  4. Dave says:

    Oh come on! It’s understandable why AA gives out smaller toothbrushes & toothpaste since the amenity kit itself is basically one-off (particularly for frequent Intl. Business travellers) – few people keep the toothbrushes after disembarking since the ones they carry/have at home are far better.

  5. Darren says:

    Their last kit had a full-sized toothbrush which I find easier to use… yes, the smaller one is fine for a one-off, but the quality of the bristles is also reduced. And you’re right, my carry-on toothpaste is far preferred, but I hated that small tube. Just different opinions. :-) And they absolutely should at least bring back mints AND mouthwash.

  6. Andy says:

    I’m wondering: how do airlines decide what goes into the kits? I would of expected from American, a world class airline, to include mouthwash and mints.

  7. Darren says:

    Well, I know they work closely with the manufacturers of the kits and probably have a price point per kit they don’t want to exceed. That will determine what items they can or cannot include. I’m hoping to eventually meet with one of the main manufacturers and tour their facilities.

  8. Noah Kimmel says:

    Looks decent….

  9. [...] from Frequently Flying did a great review of the amenity kit (better than anything I could do), so do check out his review and see where he ranked the kit on his 7 point scale. American Airlines Amenity Kit (Picture courtesy of Darren from Frequently [...]

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