American Airlines Alters Adorable Pink "Women's" Search Box

American Airlines has altered their adorable pink “women’s” search box, it’s now blue and looks almost like the boy’s search box except for the lack of scary tools.

Lack of “confusing” options must have tested really well in focus groups, eh? It’s not simplified. It’s streamlined and “user friendly,” right?

Keep telling yourselves that. Since you guys obviously read this blog, here’s how you streamline a search box. And here’s how you make something useful and user friendly. And no, these sites aren’t just for chicks.

Next up, this blog helps you with your book recommendations. Commenters, your suggestions please. The Feminine Mystique maybe? How about The Second Sex? Too French? —MEGHANN MARCO

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  1. myrall says:

    Y’know, I was thinking. I remember reading a study a while back about how women are increasingly the primary decision makers regarding travel plans in households. If this was the target group that AA was shooting for in creating this alterna-site, they should go waaaaay back to the drawing board.

  2. Kluv says:

    Maybe they should rent “This is Spinal Tap”, instead:

    AA Exec #1: “They’re not going to release the site. … because they have decided that the search box is sexist.”

    AA Exec #2: “Well, so what? What’s wrong with bein’ sexy? I mean, there’s no…”

    AA Exec #1: “Sex-IST!”

    AA Exec #3: “IST!”

  3. bluwapadoo says:

    It still has a phallic plane on the search and they replaced a question (Ready to book your flight)with a command (Book your flight today). Also, it assumes that women aren’t ready to fly until next year and come back on the same day, whereas, a man is ready to go tomorrow and come back 2 days later.

    That is, if we are still looking for things to criticize.

  4. tvh2k says:


    I think you’re going overboard in criticizing the default date options. As a developer myself I know this is one thing that is easily (and often) overlooked.

  5. oudemia says:

    How about “The (Air) Traffic in Women” by Gayle Rubin?

  6. engunneer says:

    I can’t find a link to the women’s page from the main website, or I’m blind.

    Also, the screenshot is a little deceiving, as there is clearly a link for more advanced searched directly underneath the box. (for Discount Code, One-Way Trip, and Multiple Cities)

    Still, the options are not as powerful as the main search.

  7. clementine says:

    Do both systems give you the same price or is it like dry cleaning – one price for men and a higher price for women?

  8. gorckat says:

    Still, the options are not as powerful as the man search.


  9. bluwapadoo says:


    That was the point: to go overboard.

    I just like adding fuel to the fire.

  10. endersshadow says:

    Is it wrong that I started singing the Burger King man song when I saw this? “Ooooh yes, I’m a guy, I’ll admit I’ve been fed quiche!” I feel like the AA execs must’ve been singing this…another reason to not do business w/ AA…that and they screwed me out of $300 last year.

  11. acambras says:

    Yeah, even if they changed the color scheme, it’s still stupid.

  12. noneother says:

    my mom would prefer the second one

  13. kweee says:

    Next week’s American Airlines women’s search box:

    Please select your departure state | Alabama v |

    Please select your destination
    o Health spa
    o Lesbian bar
    o Other

  14. pestie says:

    That plane-tip looks suspiciously like the head of a snake to me. Hmmmm…

  15. mrdelayer says:

    it’s now blue and looks almost like the boy’s search box except for the lack of scary tools.

    I think you misspelled “useful”.

  16. elisa says:

    I can’t find a link from the main page either. How do people find the women’s site?

    I ran a couple of searches…and as far as I can tell, the prices are the same. But it’s still sexist. And I *like* having all those options on the regular page. Does that mean I’m not a woman?

    But I’ve never flown AA, and don’t think I’m going to start. This doesn’t help.

  17. velocipenguin says:

    Here’s how you streamline a search box.

  18. kerry says:

    @velocipenguin: That’s what I was thinking, too.
    Also, @kweee, you crack me up.

  19. mld says:

    The “women” on the site look like Stepford travelers.

  20. coconino says:

    hey there is free tampon right?

  21. seanSF says:

    Instead of dumbing down search functionality for one audience (whether they need it or not), how about making the main search easy for everyone to use. Duh.

  22. Trackback says:

    Downgraded: Lavender Update: The controversial and lame American Airlines website for women got a minor redesign, as Meg at the Consumerist noticed. See the before-and-after screenshots above. The criticism must have gotten to them.

  23. ngwoo says:

    Next week, it’ll say “Book your flight now, woman!” and not contain a “Return date” box.

  24. rabbitbrain says:

    Is any woman here a member of American’s frequent flyer program? Did you notice that they don’t allow Ms. as an option for salutation? – you have to choose Miss or Mrs. Since every other airline I know of allows Ms., I assume this is a conscious decision that was made at the highest corporate levels by sexist pigs. (Maybe they’re fundamentalists of some sort? The Taliban?) I’m a PhD and I spoke on the phone with someone and asked to be changed to Dr. He assured me the change would be made. It never happened.