Compensation Clinic: American Airlines ORD-LHR Flight Delay & Old Equipment


Airlines always tend to feature their latest airplanes and seat configurations on advertisements that often have very little to do with reality.

Compensation Clinic American Airlines ORD-LHR Delay

A LoyaltyLobby reader contacted me about an old American Airlines 767-300 plane and delayed Chicago to London flight.

Remember that you can always email me about your compensation experiences and I will feature one every Sunday.

Here’s the email from the reader:

I don’t have my original complaint note because you just fill it out on the website, but in general:

I’d booked an AA Award ticket ORD-LHR-RTM using 20,000 miles (off-peak to Europe).

I’d booked it specifically to get a long LHR layover (9 hours) so I could meet my college friends for lunch.

AA flight was delayed 4 hours at Chicago. Left gate, returned, had 8 text messages with new departure times that came and went.

Inside the plane, despite AA’s new advertising campaign promoting their new aircraft and IFE options, this was an old 767-300 that had no IFE, broken audio, and no in-seat power. I mean, it’s been years since I was on an intercontinental flight without IFE. Delta and even United have it now on just about all of their aircraft.

That said, AAgents were quite friendly, FAs were excellent, and quite proactive about handing out snacks and food, during the delays.

Below is the response. I am very happy with the 10,000 miles!

Here’s the reply from AA:

Thank you for contacting Customer Relations.

We are terribly sorry that we didn’t get you to London as planned. Regrettably, the mechanical issue with the particular airplane scheduled for your flight caused an unavoidable delay. Still, we can appreciate how frustrating it must have been to spend your time waiting for your flight to depart.

We’d like to apologize in a concrete way and have credited 10,000 Customer Service Bonus miles to your AAdvantage® account to do so.

We are currently replacing our older domestic aircraft with modern Boeing 737 and Airbus aircraft. The delivery of the 737s commenced in 2009, and the delivery of the Airbus aircraft began in the fall of 2013. On the international front, we have 42 Boeing Dreamliner aircraft on order intended to replace some of our older international aircraft, starting in late 2014. We are also proud to be the first U.S. carrier to be flying Boeing’s 777-300ER. All of these international aircraft will feature new seats, state of the art inflight entertainment, luxurious premium cabin amenities, and in flight international WiFi. We are also in the process of retrofitting our current international 777-200 fleet to offer similar services and amenities. With continued new aircraft deliveries over the next several years, the combined airline will have one of the most modern and efficient fleets in the industry and a solid foundation for continued investment in technology, products and services.

Mr. LoyaltyLobby reader, while we know you were upset with us, we are glad you took the time to write to let us know. It gave us this opportunity to express our apologies for what happened and attempt to make things up to you. Please continue to fly with us.


Well. I think that the reader did well here especially considering that AA was effectively refunding half of the miles he used for the award ticket in the first place.

You can usually work these long transits in your favor by spending a few hours or the night in the city to meet some colleagues/friends. Unfortunately, AA’s mechanical delay affected the reader’s plans.