Best Seats: American Airlines Boeing 767-200
Flights from New York to both Los Angeles and San Francisco are considered a premium market given the volume of road warriors who travel the route. As such, many airlines offer a dedicated fleet of aircraft flown exclusively between these cities with an enhanced cabin configuration normally seen on international routes.
American Airlines is one of those carriers and they operate Boeing 767-200s on flights between New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport and both LAX and SFO. The aircraft features three classes of service — first class, business class and economy. Passengers in the premium cabins enjoy upgraded amenities, including multi-course meals, bigger seats and individual on-demand media players.
I've had the opportunity to fly with American on this route several times and offer my suggestions on where to sit in this installment of "Best Seats."
Truth be told, any seat in first class on this aircraft is a great seat. They offer 62 inches of space, or pitch, between rows and all convert into a fully-flat sleeper seat. Even if you select a window seat, aisle access is easy with the amount of space provided.
Row seven, the first row of business class, is immediately behind a bulkhead wall separating the cabin from first class. The seats in this row don't allow for full leg extension and you're not able to stow a carry-on on the floor for takeoff or landing. Seats D and G in rows eight through 10 are the best. Each offers direct aisle access, you won't have anyone climbing over you to get up and the seats fully recline. If you're a window person, be advised there is nothing but a solid wall at seats 11A and 11J. All seats in this cabin offer 50 inches of pitch and recline to a non-flat, but still very comfortable cradle position.
The business class galley and two lavatories are located at the very beginning of economy class, so those seated in rows 17 through 24 might be disrupted by the activity. That said, row 20 offers the most legroom of any seats in this cabin as it's the overwing emergency exit row. The seats in row 19 do not recline. And as with any aircraft, the last several rows — 37 through 40 in this case — are less than ideal given the proximity of the lavatories. You'll often find people gathering in the aisle right next to your seat. Legroom in economy on this aircraft is pretty generous when compared to the rest of American's domestic fleet. Seat pitch of 34 inches is found throughout the cabin as compared to about 31 inches on other aircraft.
DC power is available in every cabin as denoted by the small dots on the seat map above. Every seat in first and business class has individual outlets and be sure to note the rows where it's available in economy if you're looking to plug in.
Have you flown on this aircraft? What's your favorite seat?