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American Airlines History

American Airlines, with the IATA code AA, is one of the oldest and largest airlines in the world. It has a rich history that spans over nine decades, shaping the aviation industry and revolutionizing air travel. From its humble beginnings to becoming a global leader, American Airlines has played a significant role in connecting people and cultures across the globe.

The airline was founded on April 15, 1926, as a result of a consolidation of more than 80 small airlines. It started its operations as American Airways, providing mail and passenger services in the southwestern United States. Over the years, American Airways expanded its route network and introduced new innovations to improve the travel experience.

During the 1930s, American Airways became American Airlines and began operating transcontinental flights, connecting the East Coast to the West Coast of the United States. This marked a significant milestone in the airline's history, as it opened up new possibilities for long-distance air travel.

More Airline Insights & Tips

Here are a few of helpful resources & tips that can further enhance your knowledge of American airlines and how to best be prepared for your trip:

  • Delays are an unfortunate fact of the life of an air traveler. Arm yourself against surprises by knowing the flight status of your AA American flight before heading to the airport, as this could save you a lot of time, or even your trip to the airport if your flight is canceled.
  • Info can be found here on American Airlines’s company structure, headquarters, etc.
  • See which partnerships and alliances American has here. This is useful if you want to build up your frequent flyer points on partner airlines.
  • Want to know which plane types are in service? Check out AA’s fleet list here.
  • When considering a flight booking on American Airlines, be aware that third-party travel sites might require you to use their customer service instead of American 's, which may be less than ideal in certain situations.

Beyond the history presented here for American , if you’re wanting more aviation history, read about the history of commercial flight here, or the history of the airline industry here.

In the 1950s and 1960s, American Airlines continued to innovate and grow. It was one of the first airlines to introduce jet aircraft, such as the Boeing 707, which allowed for faster and more efficient travel. The airline also pioneered the concept of computerized reservation systems, making it easier for passengers to book their flights.

Throughout the years, American Airlines has faced various challenges and undergone several transformations. It has weathered economic downturns, industry deregulation, and intense competition. However, the airline has consistently adapted and evolved to meet the changing needs of its customers.

Today, American Airlines operates an extensive global network, serving destinations in over 50 countries. It has a modern fleet of aircraft, including the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and the Airbus A321neo, offering passengers a comfortable and enjoyable travel experience.

For more information about this airline, check out our comprehensive American Airlines Guide.

Find more help here for your journey through the airport