American Airlines regional jet first class (Updated)

The first class cabin on an American Airlines regional jet. Specifically, this is a CRJ-900.
American Airlines regional jet first class cabin. Specifically, this is a CRJ-900.

I wrote last year about regional jet first class service on American Airlines (or American Eagle). For those of us who fly out of smaller markets, having this first class product is a great option. I had the opportunity to fly this product December 29 between Phoenix and Houston. This is a longer flight between two larger markets, so I wanted to update my original post. This flight was also scheduled to have a dinner service. This is not a great first class product, but it is much better than any domestic economy class flight.

As it would on any mainline flight, service started with a pre-departure beverage. Having heard reports that American does not serve Woodford Reserve on regional jets, and having a taste for bourbon, I decided to test the theory. When I asked the flight attendant if they had it, she responded, “We do now.” Happy days! Woodford Reserve isn’t the best bourbon in the world, but it is a solid choice. For free on a domestic flight, it is a real winner.

American Airlines domestic drinks menu.
American Airlines domestic drinks menu. The menu is consistent between regional jets and mainline planes.

When we took off, the flight attendant quickly came by and offered us something from the snack basket. I thought this was weird for a dinner flight, so I asked about it. She said she was also expecting dinner, but nothing was loaded on the plane. That was a real disappointment. We were hungry, and a meal would have been nice. That said, I have a decent guess about what the offerings would have been. American Eagle regional jets don’t have ovens, so regional jet first class meals have to be something which can be served at room temperature. I wrote two weeks ago about meals on a mainline flight. My wife and I both had chilled or room-temperature offerings on that flight, and perhaps that post will give you an idea of what to expect.

After the snack basket, there really wasn’t much to the service. The attendant did pass through the cabin and was responsive when we asked for anything, but there really wasn’t much for her to do. There was no entertainment, although the onboard wifi was surprisingly fast. The seat was also quite comfortable. I settled in with my bourbon and a good book, and we were in Houston before I knew it. American offers a nice product in regional jet first class, and it was too bad they did not cater this particular flight.

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