We spotted (and Instagrammed) this Flagship Independence yellow-ribboned jet at JFK recently
With so much awful press for American Airlines lately, we'd like to point out one very positive continuing agenda of AA: their honoring of both enlisted military and veterans. There's several specific ways we can think of where AA deserves a round of applause for this:
· Veterans Day may have been yesterday, but their Yellow Ribbon Fleet flies year-round. At least six of the airline's planes have been painted with a special livery featuring a yellow ribbon of remembrance on the tail and "In support of all who serve" on the fuselage.
· Honor Flights. Ever been in an airport and see the hallway lined with American flags for a procession? That's for one of American's special flights where, for free, they transport veterans to visit the landmarks and monuments to their service in DC. We actually encountered one arriving AA Honor Flight at SFO and it can be quite a moving moment.
· Some of those pilots, flight attendants and other crew working your American Airlines airplane may also be US military reservists, as is the case for Wayne Hanna, an AA mechanic who moonlights as a US Air Force flight engineer on a KC-10 Extender (or is it the other way around?).
· Bonus miles given for donations to the USO. American Airlines gives 10 miles per dollar donated (15 if you donate before November 14) and then uses the money to further one of 16 programs to support the troops. Donations must be $25 or more for the bonus AAdvantage miles.
· Additionally, American Airlines extends special travel benefits to veterans. These include waived baggage fees, discounts on leisure travel, early boarding, upgrades when available, Admirals Club entry (for soldiers traveling in uniform), and travel sponsorship for Medal of Honor Recipients to their annual awards program.
Below: An oldie but goodie commercial from American Airlines. Spot the cameo from the ribbon-liveried jet!