This week we are taking a walk down memory lane with a vintage first class trip report. I’m sharing photos and brief commentary from a trip I took in the final days of 2010 and first days of 2011 that included many first class flights from five Star Alliance carriers. As we enter a new decade, the goal of this trip report is to examine how airlines have changed over the last one. Although this trip report has never been published, I will not be publishing a detailed, word-heavy review as I do for current trip reports. Instead, commentary will be limited and the focus will be on photos. For the final post, I will summarize, as generally as I can, how premium products have changed over the last decade.
- Read The Entire Series:
- United Airlines 757-200 First Class Los Angeles to Chicago
- Lufthansa A340-300 First Class Chicago To Munich
- Turkish Airlines 737-700 Business Class Munich To Istanbul
- Turkish Airlines 777-300 First Class Istanbul to Bangkok
- Fifth Freedom Flashback: Bangkok To Ho Chi Minh City On Qatar Airways + Lufthansa
- Thai Airways 747-400 First Class Bangkok To Beijing
- Park Hyatt Saigon + Exploring Ho Chi Minh City
- SWISS A340-300 First Class Shanghai To Zurich
- Lufthansa A340-300 First Class Frankfurt To New York
- United Airlines 757-200 First Class New York JFK To Los Angeles
We’ve reached the end of our series. This last report looks back on a route I used to fly often and fondly remember. This particular flight, however, wasn’t all that great.
Flight #9: United 757-200 First Class New York (JFK) To Los Angeles
- Ah, the good old days. JFK, “p.s.” service, and three cabins of service.
- United has sadly abandoned JFK, a move it now considers a mistake.
- We waited for our flight (three hour layover) in the first class lounge, which is now the home of Alaska’s JFK lounge
- The lounge was very quiet and featured a selection of cold food and self-serve alcohol.
- Over the years I enjoyed so many wonderful flights to/from JFK
- This one, however, was not a pleasant flight.
- The menu advertised meal service “on-demand” but the flight attendant was visibly perturbed when I asked to delay meal service.
- I just sort of stared at him and he walked away.
- He later came back and apologized, but I just ate with everyone else.
- The 2–2 seats in first class were so-called “angle lie-flat” and the same seats Singapore Airlines used to offer in its “Raffles” business class.
- The three seat photos below are stock photos of the United First Class seat
- Meal service included mixed nuts, an appetizer, and salad as a first course
- For my main course, I ordered cheese ravioli: simple, but delicious
- Ice cream sundae to finish the meal
- Meal service over the last decade has really not changed much.
- Then I slept…it had been a long day
As promised, now that the series is done I will do one more post reflecting upon how first class has changed over the last decade.
Loved the series Matthew!
If that was “First”, what was Business? The standard domestic First-class recliners we see today? Loved the series as well, gives me a look at what the industry looked like around the time I first started traveling
Another vintage review:
I always thought Row 9 was better than F on PS
I slept better in F, but loved row 9 for sure!
First of all, I LOVED this series. Curious, though: what made this flight unpleasant to the point you still remember it nearly 10 years later? Was it mostly the FA’s reaction to your dine on demand request? That was rude and uncalled for, but surely you’ve encountered worse than that over the years?
I’ve encountered much worse, but this FA just threw me for a loop. The menu invited you to dine on demand and yet he threw up what could only be called a hissy fit when I asked for this. To his credit, he calmed down and later apologized, but that annoyed, almost angry reaction will be the lasting memory of this flight.
That salad looked good.
Food was very tasty — something I miss ex-JFK.
I still remember somehow accidentally booked the first p.s. flight, and it was a pretty good product in the beginning. Sadly it deteriorates as times go by. My dad loves the tempur pedic pillow gotten that I got for the inaugural flight.
Just curious… if anyone still remember the good snack cart that United offers as pre-arrival meal on these morning transcontinental departures. I remembered that they offer shrimp cocktails and various cold cuts and cheeses an hour and half prior to arrival on these morning flights.
Thanks for reminding us that United used to be a pioneer on the premium transcontinental markets too.
I remember you excellent trip report of that flight on airliners.net!