AviationAmerican Airlines scraps plan for seats with 29-inch pitch

Big squeeze won’t please, so AA backs down

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Big squeeze won’t please, so AA backs down

The configuration will allow American to fit 172 seats into its 737 Max aircraft, up from the 160 that are on the carrier's 737-800s, which are the same dimensions.

American Airlines has done away with plans to squeeze the space between three of the rows on its incoming Boeing 737 Max aircraft to 29 inches.

The move comes in response to feedback from customers and employees since the planned configuration was made public in early May.  

"It is clear that today, airline customers feel increasingly frustrated by their experiences and less valued when they fly," the company said. "We can be leaders in helping to turn around that perception, and that included reviewing decisions that have significant impact on the flying experience."

American is still planning a tighter configuration on its 737 Max than on its existing narrowbody fleet. Rows throughout the economy section will be spaced 30 inches apart, a metric known as pitch in industry parlance. That's compared to the standard 31 inches of pitch that American currently offers on narrowbodies.

The configuration will allow American to fit 172 seats into its 737 Max aircraft, up from the 160 that are on the carrier's 737-800s, which are the same dimensions.

American said it is also looking at switching to the 30-inch pitch on its existing 737-800.

The carrier said that passengers aren't likely to notice the loss of an inch of space because the seats on the 737 Max are thinner than existing seats and make more efficient use of space.

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