American Airlines Will Shut Down Gate Kiosks On April 1

Want to change your flight, change your seat, or try to score an upgrade? You won’t be able to use an American Airlines gate-side kiosk to do it anymore starting April 1.

American is permanently de-commissioning its gate-side kiosks on April Fools’ Day. They explain their reasons in an internal memo reviewed by View From The Wing,

  • The SS60s no longer support updated software applications.
  • They are no longer Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliant.
  • They were not widely used for ancillary or IROPs options.

The machines will be physically turned off and paper inside will be removed and then recycled. Signage about the kiosks will come down. They’ll still remain in gate areas for awhile, “dark..until they can be physically removed.”

The airline reminds employees to “encourage customers to download the AA app prior to travel.” Without the app, customers will no longer have gate-side kiosks as an option to avoid finding a helpful employee.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I’ve used these only sparingly. The app is definitely more robust, obviously, but these were definitely an alternative to those who aren’t major app users.

    That said, it probably wasn’t worth the cost of upkeep for the small fraction of flyers that utilized them.

  2. Is this an April 1st joke? Sadly, it’s AA so probably not.

    With AA actions like his, people without working, charged-up, internet-connected smartphones or other personal electronic devices while on the go are in for a world of greater inconvenience.

  3. I’ve seen those and never used them just used the app on my phone or gone to an agent.

  4. Dang, these would let you get back on upgrade lists when you did standby and AA IT would break your requests. Was super easy and remote agents couldn’t do it for some reason. Was way better than having to go to the gate.

  5. Prudent move by AA. Obviously not heavily used and not even current w software or security (PCI) standards.

    Also for those complaining that if you don’t have the app you lose an option do you REALLY think people that won’t use the app on their phone would use a kiosk? Also not the check in kiosks (which make sense through staff reductions) but the ones scattered around the terminal near gates that are NEVER used. I agree w previous poster (as lifetime Platinum w 3 million miles) – in all my travels I have never seen one of these used

  6. Agree with AdamH these had some helpful tricks and were better then the AAngry staff at the gate who rarely have any interest in helping you.

  7. Agreed, used these machines often to put myself back on the upgrade list. I guess it’s back to going to the admirals club.

  8. AA just try to increase difficulties of changing flights at last minutes.
    These industrial devices are very easy to get upgraded by switching main boards. Hardware cost is not huge since it’s low tech machine like Casio calculator.
    It’s not “can’t be done”, it’s “don’t want to”.

  9. Instead of announcing this change they could have programmed the kiosks to juts flash screens saying:

    “Please do not crowd around the kiosk. We will make an announcement about boarding soon.””

    “If your name has not been called please do approach the kiosk.”

    “Please enter your name [pause] and request [pause]. No, sorry it’s a full flight we can’t make any more changes.”

  10. OH please, have you ever seen anyone use one. . .NOT. Good call by AA. It’s the 21st century, get the app you have everything else on your phone.

  11. Fantastic move, the app is so much better and easier. Only people who are complaining are the ones who don’t know how to use a cell phone

  12. Has anyone else noticed that the check-in kiosks (not these, the ones at counters) have been BRUTALLY SLOW since the last software upgrade? “Please wait, we’re retrieving your information…”

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