Any advice/suggestions/reviews of the AA MD-88?

13 replies

CBRQF

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 28 Jul 2011

Total posts 47

AA MD-88

Any advice/suggestions/reviews of the AA MD-88? I'm flying on one from Dallas/Fort Worth to Orlando in August.

KG

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 10 May 2011

Total posts 249

Are you flying First? In this case here are my 2 cents:

I flew last October in F, short flight from MSY to DFW. Excellent legroom, big old style recliners. Avoid the bulkhead as on the port side (row A and B) of the plane legroom is reduced and on the starboard side (row E and F) it is more but lavatories might be bothersome. In general seats are good no matter where you sit. Service in F varies on the time of day you fly.

KG

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 10 May 2011

Total posts 249

CBRQf: Forgot to add that the further to the front of the plan you are seated, the quieter the journey will be as the engines are mounted all the way at the back.

Hugo

Member since 12 Jun 2013

Total posts 216

It's a plane. It's got two wings and a tail. A bunch of seats inside. You'll be on it for about two hours. What else matters?

KG

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 10 May 2011

Total posts 249

What else matters? Some people would like to know whether there are perhaps seats to avoid (some might not have recline, others might have limited legroom) and he also is interested to know whether he will get fed, or is better off grabbing a snack at the airport. Nothing wrong with that. I personally do care where I sit in a plane and am also always interested in onboard services. Whilst some argue that you should "just wait and see", others like to have expectations managed. Nothing wrong with that I feel.

spinoza

Member since 01 Feb 2012

Total posts 218

Funny comment to see on ausbt.

That's like going to a food blog and commenting, its all just food, you eat it for sustenance, who cares? :)

wilsoni Banned

wilsoni Banned

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 28 Sep 2011

Total posts 302

It's beyond funny (odd, not humour), it's the sort of vacuous self indulgence this forum can do without.

spinoza

Member since 01 Feb 2012

Total posts 218

I flew both first and economy on the MD80 last year. Everything feels super old. First class seats seemed bigger than other AA planes, but the leather looks and feels like its from the 80s. If you are in economy don't sit near the back. Its scary how loud it is, apparently because of the engine placement. Even going to the toilets (which were in the back) for a few minutes, it was extremely loud. 

I had friends who called this the widow maker when I said I was flying on it, yes it is quite old, and it has had many incidents in the past, and AA seems to be the only first world airline still flying it. Of course chances of anything dangerous happening are very low, but given the choice I would always avoid it personally. 

slim

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 29 May 2013

Total posts 46

Totally agree with KG & spinoza.  These are like flying museums. 

Flew one once from IAH to ATL back in 2009.  First is so quiet the only thing you can really hear is the soft whoosh of the air moving past outside.  I was particularly amused by the now-defunct ashtray located in the armrest. 

Can't recall if my flight had quite this layout or if I'm remembering another flight - but I seem to remember going for a walk down back & seeing a block of what seemed like windowless seats located behind the aft galley (right next to the turbines).   Talk about the worst seats on the plane!!  Might be worth a mid-flight wander, just for the experience (and appreciation of the whisper quiet up-front).

Enjoy, CBRQF, for before long, these will be history (with AA phasing these out with 737-800's).

lee

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 18 Feb 2013

Total posts 11

I recently flew from Chicago to Vegas on an AA MD80 and sat in Economy Plus just behind F. The plane was my age (28) but very quiet, so much so that you could be forgiven for thinking the engines weren't running. The Economy Plus seats were the most comfortable Economy seats I'd ever flown, especially compared to the brand new AA 738 I'd just transferred from which I would have to rate as one of the worst Economy seats I'd ever flown. If you feel like giving your ears a hard time, head to the toilet at the back, how anyone could sit back there for the duration of the flight is beyond me. Saying that I would fly on an AA MD80 over an AA 737 any day of the week. 

dragonfly

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 24 Apr 2013

Total posts 36

I have flown DFW-MCO on AA four times, all on an MD-88, and will do it again later this year. It's a fairly quick journey with a plane that gets you from A to B, no frills. I prefer to sit on the LHS which are 2 seats across. Depending on how you booked it and your OW status, you can choose your seat via the QF or AA website. I was upgraded once to "First" which is a little more confortable with wider seats and more legroom, not dissimilar to QF cityflyer business. Economy passengers have "food for purchase" and First get a meal included. I have not had any issues with the MD-88.

wilsoni Banned

wilsoni Banned

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 28 Sep 2011

Total posts 302

Delta still has a bunch of these antiques, not just AA. Some of the Delta versions are DC9-50 (!!), others MD 88 and MD 90.  They used to back them off the gate with reverse thrusters - no tug, quite a sight. With them it's 3-2 in "coach", with AA as dragonfly says it's 2-3.  Check seatguru.com. AA often has good fares in F. If you're not used to flying in the US, expect service to be minimal whatever cabin you're in, and queues at the airport long and longer. 

CBRQF

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 28 Jul 2011

Total posts 47

Thanks everyone for your replies.

I am flying in 'coach' on a QF ticket after arriving from Sydney. Unfortunately they placed my in 29D which is right at the back next to the toilets. The QF site wouldnt let me select a seat (was a sale fare). Luckily I was able to ring Qantas and they had one other seat option closer to the front but on the window in a set of 3. Probably better than being right up the back next to the toilets from what you have all said.

I will let you know what its like (if the plane makes it).

Ryan K

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 30 May 2013

Total posts 114

I recently flew on an AA MD-80 from ORD-LGA. Personally, knowing that these aircraft are so old and their days are numbered, I loved it! It won't be long until they're replaced with 737-800's. I sat in economy, about a third of the way down the aircraft. The seats felt wide - better than the 737-800 I flew in a week later. Enjoy the flight, you won't get many more chances to fly on these type of aircraft.

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