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Review: American B737-800 Economy (DFW-AUS)

Updated: Jun 23, 2023

After flying in from Baton Rouge on American Eagle, it was time to catch our connecting flight to Austin. Though, there was only one problem, we didn’t have a plane to catch due to our inbound aircraft being delayed.


Booking

Typically when I travel to Baton Rouge it is cheaper to fly into New Orleans and rent a car but, for whatever reason, United wanted almost $700 per person to fly to New Orleans while American had flights to Baton Rouge for under $400 round trip, which made American a no-brainer.


Pre-Flight

Our onward flight was departing out of Terminal D, so we headed from our arrival gate, E38, over to the SkyLink train.

We rode the SkyLink around the loop, past where the new Terminal F is scheduled to be built, and hopped off at the D1-D18 stop.

While we initially didn't have time for a lounge visit, the rolling delays showed no signs of stopping so we headed for the DFW Centurion Lounge. Fortunately for us, there was no line or waitlist to get in. The lounge was pretty crowded though and we managed to grab a seat near the buffet as a couple was leaving.

American Express Centurion Lounge DFW Airport Entrance
At least we can hang out in the Centurion Lounge

We snacked on some of the buffet thread and sipped bubbly in the lounge while the rolling delays continued to pile up.

American Airlines App delay notification

The 10:00p departure time looked like it was going to hold so, we left the lounge at 9:30 to make the walk down to Gate D38.

DFW Airport Terminal Signage
Maybe we'll actually get out of here

Boarding

We arrived at the gate just as Group 1 was starting to board. We waited until Group 4 was called before scanning our boarding passes and heading down the jet bridge to our waiting 737.


American Airlines

AA 2707

DFW-AUS (Dallas/Ft. Worth International - Austin-Bergstrom International)

Seat: 18A (Economy)

B737-800 (N809NN)

Scheduled: 8:15p-9:17p

Actual: 10:44p-11:49p



Seat:

Once on board, we made our way back to row 18, which is directly behind the emergency exit row. The seat pitch wasn't good but also wasn't terrible. I'm 6'2" and my knees weren't touching the seat in front of me but they were close.

American Airlines Boeing 737-800 Economy Legroom
American Airlines Boeing 737-800 Economy Legroom

As part of American's 'Project Oasis' retrofit, all of the IFE screens were removed from narrowbody aircraft and placed with personal device holders. With a short, delayed flight, it didn't seem like many people even bothered to pull their devices out.


Departure

Once everyone boarded another delay notification hit my phone, now showing a 10:50p departure time. The crew came on to inform us that we were waiting on a pilot and as soon as she arrived we could go.

American Airlines App Delay Notification

The pilot ended up arriving earlier than expected and we pushed off the gate six minutes before our updated departure time. We taxied out past an American 777 that was preparing to operate a delayed flight as well.


In Flight

We took off to the north before circling around and heading south towards Austin. The flight between Dallas/Ft. Worth and Austin is only 190 miles so American doesn't offer any service in Economy. I just leaned against the window and nodded off for the short flight.

American Airlines Boeing 737-800 departing DFW Airport

Arrival

I woke up as the Captain made the announcement to prepare for landing. We landed from the south on to Runway 36L and it was hard on the brakes. Apparently, the pilot in command didn't want to go all the way down to the end of the runway and backtrack down the taxiway so, instead, we made a quick U turn in the middle of the runway.

We taxied over to the terminal and parked next to an American Boeing 737 MAX-8 at Gate 22.

American Airlines Boeing 737 MAX-8 at Austin Airport
Finally back in Austin

Once we deplaned, we headed through the terminal to the parking garage and headed off to pick up Gumbo from his vacation with his puppy friends.


Summary

The flight itself was exactly as expected from gate to gate. The issues on this flight, and this whole trip with American, came down to the flight delays. I would down my travels with American a few years ago when they made the shift to a less premium flying experience and had trouble running a reliable operation. While I have flown a couple of flights with them since, this was my first, scheduled roundtrip with them in a few years. With three out of my four flights with them having issues this trip, I'm hesitant to fly American in the near future.


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