MIAMI — After two and a half weeks of voting, the polls are closed. On Thursday, American CEO Doug Parker announced that the employees have spoken, and the new flag tail is here to stay.
On December 16th, 2013, American Airlines CEO Doug Parker announced that the future of the newly merged airline’s livery would be decided by his employees. The choices- keep the new “flag tail,” or to revert back to the classic AA symbol.
“It was very close but the majority has spoken and the new flag tail will proudly represent American Airlines – and all of us – for years to come.” Over 60,418 employees voted, with 31,355 in favor of flag tail.
“As I said early in this process, I was indifferent as to which option we chose, I just wanted you to be able to choose,” said Parker. “Now that the votes are in, I’m really pleased to have a firm decision we can all embrace. This is the airplane we will fly as we restore American to the greatest airline in the world — and that is exciting.”
In an unscientific poll conducted by Airchive, readers were quite divided on the topic- only 55% of the nearly 1,000 responses were in favor keeping the new tail. Reader John commented “The AA Eagle is one of the classic logo’s out there. You have to revert back to the classic Eagle – it is the true symbol of American Airlines.”
American currently has over 200 aircraft painted with the new livery, but there is still a lot of work left to be done. Over 300 US Airways mainline aircraft, 280 US Airways Express, and 539 American aircraft will be painted in total. While American has been repainting its aircraft at an impressive rate, there is still a lot of work left to be done.
Today, however, the painters can rest easy in knowing the 200+ aircraft already painted won’t be coming back for round two. In addition a new TWA retro jet will be introduced to the fleet, while the existing retro jets will thankfully remain untouched.
The Full Message from CEO Doug Parker is Below:
Dear Fellow Employees,
The votes are in. After three weeks, much conversation and more than 60,000 employees voting, we now have an answer to the question about what will be painted on the tails of our aircraft. It was very close but the majority has spoken and the new flag tail will proudly represent American Airlines – and all of us – for years to come.
As I said early in this process, I was indifferent as to which option we chose, I just wanted you to be able to choose. Now that the votes are in, I’m really pleased to have a firm decision we can all embrace. This is the airplane we will fly as we restore American to the greatest airline in the world — and that is exciting.
It is particularly exciting to see how engaged our team was in this decision. Consistent with our imperative to Engage Our Employees, we took the unprecedented step of asking our team members to choose our livery, and a phenomenal 60% of you participated. We of course can’t vote on every decision at the airline, but we do want input from all of you on issues that are important to your work lives. This turnout proves what we already knew: we have team members who care a lot about American Airlines and its future. That is a great asset and we look forward to hearing and learning more from you all as we move forward.
For those of you who really wanted to bring back the AA, know that it will still be with us. First, it will take us many months to paint the 580 US Airways aircraft and those aircraft will be the priority which means the remaining classic Silverbirds will still be flying for some time. Also, as previously announced, we intend to have heritage aircraft in our fleet going forward, so the AA livery will remain in our system even after all of the fleet has been painted.
What’s really great is that this livery now represents the people of American Airlines. We voted for it and it is ours. I will now forever look at this livery with a great sense of pride and know that you will too.
Thanks for taking the time to give us your input. This was a small but important step in bringing us together and beginning to move forward. Now let’s get working together on the difficult task ahead — restoring American to the greatest airline in the world.