Complimentary airline food is making a comeback.

American Airlines brings back free food.
American Airlines is bringing back free meals on some of its transcontinental flights.
| Credit: Courtesy of American Airlines

Complimentary airline food is making a comeback.

American Airlines announced Tuesday the addition of free meals in the main cabin on select flights across the U.S.

The meals, including continental breakfasts and boxed lunches, will be available beginning May 1 between Los Angeles and New York City and San Francisco and New York City.

“Some of our best customers fly our trans-continental routes and we want to give them a top-notch onboard experience,” Fernand Fernandez, American's vice president of global marketing, said in a statement. “Providing complimentary meals in the Main Cabin is yet another step we're taking to enhance our service in this competitive market.”

Delta Air Lines began offering free food on the same routes at the beginning of the month.

Of course, not everything is good news in airlineville: Free food on major airlines parallels the trend to offer “basic economy,” airfares that come with no extras — not even overhead bin space.