Wed. Jul 6th, 2022

American Airlines sadly no longer consistently flies the once-popular 4.5-hour sector between Los Angeles and Toronto. However, for a limited time only, this coming September the carrier will be relaunching the route. Passengers with money to save will be the ones lucky enough to get their hands on a ticket. That’s because American has chosen to operate with a rather special plane.

The airline can boast of owning the world’s largest aircraft fleet comprising 911 mainline aircraft from both Boeing and Airbus. American Airlines is currently in the process of the largest fleet renewal in its history, with an additional 161 aircraft on order from both major planemakers. Possessing command of such a fleet enables the carrier to operate this particular route with one of its ultra-premium Airbus A321Ts. These aircraft are typically used for premium transcontinental routes.


Map detailing the route. Source: Cirium

Why American is making such a specific effort

The catch is that there are only 14 flights on offer between September 7 and September 13 for this exclusive voyage. Ever ready to take on a market opportunity, American is operating this route to fly the Hollywood crowd. The Toronto Film Festival is being held over those dates, and American appears to be betting that it can leverage the major Hollywood executives traveling to Toronto for the festival.

American can justify the use of the premium-heavy layout in such a context. Versatile business solutions are vital for American to continue its bounceback from the pandemic. While the A321Ts are usually found shuttling between Miami and the West Coast or between New York and Boston for repositioning, this hop up North will likely be validated through the demand for premium services.

The airline will fly the 2,176-mile route daily for the designated period, and to the following schedule:

  • AA2974 Los Angeles to Toronto departing 10:20 arriving 18:00
  • AA2974 Toronto to Los Angeles departing 19:00 arriving 21:25

One-way fares on the new route start at $ 516 for economy, $ 3,778 for business, and $ 5,390 for first class.

So what does your money get you?

The airline operated this route between 2016 and 2019, but it was suspended in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic. Now it’s finally returning. This is not the first year that American has operated this special service, which means it knows its customer base well and has specifically catered to their needs. In fact, it’s the only domestic jet to feature both a first- and business-class cabin.

American’s Airbus A321Ts are very premium heavy and lightly loaded, with just 102 seats. In comparison, the A321-200 is capable of carrying up to 236 people in all-economy configuration.

First class features 10 reverse herringbone ‘open suites’ with direct aisle access from all seats. Business class features 20 fully flat business class seats, in a 2-2 configuration. Economy class features just 72 seats, half of which are Main Cabin Extra seats. It’s a comfortable configuration.

American Airlines’ A321T aircraft have proved popular with business travelers. Photo: Airbus

It’s no surprise, then, that American usually deploys its 16 Airbus A321Ts on its most premium domestic routes, mainly on flights from New York and Boston to Los Angeles, Orange County and San Francisco. Since this is now a premium route, business and first class passengers will be eligible to use American’s excellent Flagship Lounge at LAX.

Planning on flying American’s A321T between Los Angeles and Toronto during the Toronto Film Festival?

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