One of the most popular flight paths out of Australia is the Sydney to Los Angeles flight but what’s it like to experience this long flight with American Airlines in economy?
Recently we spent five weeks in The States and flew from Sydney to Los Angeles with American Airlines in economy and then from Los Angeles to Omaha in Nebraska.
We’re here to let you know what to expect when flying with American Airlines in economy from Sydney to Los Angeles and back again from Los Angeles to Sydney so you can make your own decision about whether to book with them.
We’ve never flown business class and although it pains us every time we have to walk past it when we get on a plane, here’s an honest review of our experience flying from Sydney to Los Angeles with American Airlines in economy.
Sydney to LA flight time
Sydney to LA flight time takes just under 14 hours, the same time as it is on the way back from LA to Sydney.
To be honest, we didn’t find the flight time to drag too much which is always a good sign; there was enough entertainment and food to keep us busy during the flight.
As a tip to avoid jet lag on the way back from your flight from LAX to Sydney, try to get a flight that lands in the evening time in Sydney, around 7pm. We’ve found this is the easiest way to deal with jet lag as you’ll get home in time to sleep which is what we did back in February. This time round we arrived back at 6:30am and we’re still suffering now, three days on.
American Airlines luggage allowance
The awesome thing about flying with American Airlines is the luggage allowance. When flying internationally, you’ll get a hefty two bags weighing 23 kgs EACH. To me, that is an amazing deal, even when flying with American Airlines economy.
Every single time we fly, we have this pure panic to deal with because Steve ALWAYS over packs. That’s right, Steve, not me. His way of packing is to throw everything he owns into his backpack or suitcase.
Even with this flight, we had a bit of a panic because obviously we maxed out the 2 suitcases each seeing as we were going to be living in one spot for five weeks rather than actually travelling around. Luckily I didn’t pack too much so it evened out with our restriction.
A big tip when checking in with American Airlines
When you check in with American Airlines online, you’ll be prompted to pay extra money to get seats next to your loved ones. The system will automatically give you a random seat when you check in online.
Our tip is, when you check your luggage into the airport, make sure you mention something to the person on the front desk about moving seats. We did this and we were given seats next to each other.
Best of all, our seats were at the very back of the plane. This meant it felt like we had more space as we didn’t have any other rows on either side of us (we were sat in the middle row). Plus we were near the toilets and we had the cabin crew behind us so if we needed any snacks, we didn’t need to go far at all.
It was also nice not to have to rush to get off the plane. This can be a stressful experience but sitting at the back definitely has it’s advantages if you’re not in a hurry to get a connecting flight.
The seat layout on American Airlines flight from Sydney to Los Angeles
If you’re wondering what the seat layout is like on an international flight from Sydney to LA, our flight both ways was designed with 3-3-3 layout so it wasn’t too big.
If you’re getting an internal flight in The States, American Airlines internal flights has a 2-2 layout.
Leg room and seat recliner
There’s more legroom on internal flights than international flights with American Airlines.
Let’s just say the legroom on an international American Airlines flight from Sydney to Los Angeles isn’t very generous but it’s not the worst I’ve experiences on a long haul flight.
Ironically, the leg room on an American Airlines internal flight is actually way bigger (as you can see in the above image), but there’s no entertainment. We always have the conversation of which would we prefer, more legroom or good entertainment?
How far do the seats recline back on the American Airlines long haul flights? When sitting up right on the flight, I must admit it felt like we were very forward. When reclining back, it reclined back just enough to try to get some sleep. Magically, I slept for about eight hours on this flight so I had a pretty good trip.
What sleeping essentials are provided on the Los Angeles to Sydney flight?
I assumed we would be given a little pack on the American Airlines flight, seeing as it was a good 14 hour flight.
I was especially hoping for an eye mask as it got misplaced in our hotel in Omaha. When I asked for one, the flight attendant almost laughed at me.
So don’t expect a pack with a toothbrush, eye mask or earplugs on a long haul flight with American Airlines.We were given headphones for the entertainment (which are fine but I’d bring your own with you personally to cancel out the flight noise), a small pillow and a blanket as well as a menu for the food options. I’ve been on long haul flights before and not been given a food menu so at least this was a bonus to know what to expect.
One of the great things about sitting at the back of the plane on the way back from LAX to Sydney is half way during the flight we found some decent full sized pillows stuffed behind our seats and a decent blanket, both obviously from first class. So we got them out and we were never questioned about it by the staff who walked past us continuously. Bonus!
Bear in mind, although it sounds like we scored, trying to use a full sized pillow in an economy seat can be a bit of a squeeze.Luckily we bought this amazing travel pillow at Sydney airport before we left on our flight. Trust me, we’ve tried all sorts of travel pillows before and this one was definitely worth the money.
Here’s a tip as well, turn your travel pillow around so it supports your chin. I read this on the awesome Girl Tweets World blog here. It honestly works!
American Airlines Entertainment
Being able to work whilst on the flight had its advantages!
We automatically thought that because we were flying with American Airlines, that they would probably have access to some of the new movies out at the cinema. Most of the time Australia is way behind with their movie releases so we held off going to the cinema before we took this flight.
Although there were plenty of movies I hadn’t heard of before, the selection wasn’t as new as I was expecting. In saying that, I’m not sure why I was expecting it to be so up-to-date because I’ve never flown with an airline to play brand new cinema releases before.
There’s a massive selection of movies, TV shows, games and more to keep you entertained on the flight from Sydney to Los Angeles.
However, I was expecting to see a different list of movies on the way back from LA to Sydney but it was exactly the same.
American Airlines food
OK, so the main thing we all want to know about is the American Airlines food service.
Firstly let’s talk about the drinks portions on the American Airlines flight. With the option of one red or white wine, I was handed a massive glass of white wine which was definitely drinkable wine. I thought, give me two of these and I’ll be on my way…
Huge glasses of wine are served on the American Airlines flight.
There’s also plenty of other drinks to choose from including beers, soft drinks and spirits & mixers.
When we were presented with the menu when we boarded the flight, we were given a drink within 30 minutes of boarding, then dinner within an hour or so. Within another five hours we were then given more food before getting breakfast another four hours later.
I wasn’t hungry the entire flight and I must admit I’ve been on a long haul flight before with another airline where we were fed just once in 15 hours. It was horrendous and everyone was starving.
1-2 hours into the flight
- Beef stroganoff with herb potatoes, green beans and carrots
- Macaroni and cheese with vegetable ratatouille
- Chilled sesame chicken with tabbouleh salad and sesame soy dressing
(All served with chocolate mousse)
I had the beef stroganoff which was actually pretty good. The chocolate mousse was the winner though!
7-8 hours into the flight
- Angus beef pie
- Weis ice cream bar
11-12 hours into the flight
- Traditional American breakfast of scrambled eggs, roasted potatoes, bacon and grilled tomato
- Seasonal fruit plate
(both served with Greek yoghurt, granola and apple cinnamon muffin)
American Airlines Service
We found all of the staff and flight attendants to be really nice and helpful on our flights both from Sydney to Los Angeles and from Los Angeles to Sydney. Although the leg room wasn’t the best, we found as a whole, both flights were absolutely fine and we had no problems whatsoever.
Would we fly with American Airlines again?
We’d fly with American Airlines again but I think we’d upgrade by paying an extra $150 for more legroom for Stevo.
How to find cheap Sydney to Los Angeles flights
I must admit, when we flew from Los Angeles to Sydney in February, we miraculously found a one way flight for around US$250 each. We couldn’t believe how lucky we were to find this flight which we booked just a few weeks before we flew.
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