Favorite passenger airplanes?


What are your favorite commercial passenger planes? I am reading Wikipedia, and think this has to be my favorite:

This one is really cool too:


I suppose the poors must have a preferred mode of air transport. If I’m slumming, it’s the Concorde for me.

Seriously though, such a goofy cool plane concept.


Ugh, the Dreamliner is a piece of shit. Sure, it has mood lighting, but it also has Ill fitting partitions that squeak like a cheap hotel bed for eight hours, immoveable welded metal boxes stuck to the floor but not coordinated with seat placement so you could wind up with no foot space at all, shitty armrests that only fold halfway up, halved food tray tables and a bunch of other things I’m forgetting. Our last trip from London to Montreal, my wife and I made a mental list of shit design decisions to recount to my mother, because for months she had been going on about how proud she was of air Canada for being the pinnacle of air travel.


I did 10 hours on a Dreamliner last year and thought it was quite nice. Loved the windows, loved the night lighting, loved how much quieter it was. Legroom was not outstanding, but I was fine even at 6’3". But my favorite part is whatever they’re doing to condition the air. It’s a big improvement. I always, always get out of the plane with a headache and nagging cough, especially on a long flight…not that time.

If I have a choice in the future, I’ll definitely take the Dreamliner.


I flew a lot on large widebodies and I like the 777 with its massive turbines. The 787 is good with the bigger windows, but they don’t fully block out direct sunlight to my knowledge and I need it dark to sleep. Also a lot of airlines jammed in a 30 inch seat pitch on the 787 which, as a 6’2"-er is too tight for long haul.

The best airliners are the small ones IMO. Smaller than a 737 though, on which the 3x3 layout is awful. But small planes such as regional jets are much better at airports on both ends, shorter lines for check-in, boarding, unboarding, luggage; heck, if you fly a 747 even security, car rentals, and parking can be noticeably slower.

I like the Embraer 190 which is big enough to be smooth and powerful but small enough to have 2x2 layout and short lines. The new Bombardier C series is like the best plane available in my books but it’s new so I haven’t seen one in person or read passenger reviews. The C series is also the first aircraft with a geared turbofan which is cool and one of those formerly impossible technologies.



You know there are startups working on Concorde like (very fast) planes. I talked to a guy after one of my presentations in Seattle who worked at one of them.

All about the engine, apparently, and “show us the damn engine” hasn’t been illuminating so far, so… not hopeful.



"I work on the B787 for one of these airlines and can vouch that passengers in economy are very unhappy with the seating. Not only are they squeezed sideways but also in terms of leg room.

To give one example, I have learned that although the seat pitch was supposed to be 31 inches for economy class seats on the B787 (in line with the rest of their long-haul fleet), BA has now conceded that the six rear-most rows of the economy cabin do in fact only have 30-inches of legroom.

And that’s not all. For many seats on the airlines which fly the B787, you will find the legroom impeded by boxes that power the enhanced IFE (InFlight Entertainment) system on board."

Charmtrap, it seems, you were just lucky enough to win the footspace lottery.

This guy is a bit more petulant, but hey, valid criticisms for what is supposed to be the airliner of the future.

Google “787 design flaws” and you get a whole battery exploding debacle that seems more concerning than the whole Samsung-on-planes recall.

I distinctly remember telling my wife halfway across our journey, the whole plane rattling like a laundry dryer with an unblanaced drum, that I felt we were sitting in a first draft that someone printed after a liquid lunch… and then they built it. I mean, how much better are magic harry potter windows that probably cost an order of magnitude more than sliding shutters if they don’t actually keep the light out? Christ.


I guess I have bad taste in airplanes. :(


Sorry, Yack_Attack, I didn’t really mean to crap on your thread. My frustration stems a lot from the expectations built into next generations systems, and the actual results. For eight years I commuted home from SF to Montreal, predominantly on the decomposing corpses of Delta and AA mid-range planes that took two hops to get me to my destination, and while they were my ‘normal’, once in a while I’d snag a decent price one way ticket via Virgin or AirCanada, and they were glorious compared.

When we moved to London, although tickets are significantly more expensive, the silver lining was that the planes were so much more comfortable. And so halfway through our first Dreamliner flight, my meal constantly sliding into my lap, feet crunched, partitions rattling, I feel we’re back to the bad old normal, with prices as always, up and up.

I’m also kinda sore about transit after my local train company just released their ‘brand new, future train car’ to commute into London… and sure enough, if you look past the gleaming chrome and molded lines, you’ll notice 30-40% less seating… which means they’re basically building us cattle cars, and of course, with yearly price hikes. Maybe if the designers were honest about their priorities and budget these things wouldn’t feel like such a slap in the face.


I don’t fly enough to know the different models but as a childhood fan of Jane’s and its ilk in aircraft guides, I loved the chunky swept-wing BAE Tornado for some reason.


Best regional turbo: Emb-120 was a blast, but probably the Q400.

Best RJ: Emb-170/190 series. (Great layout.)

Best narrowbody for comfort: Usually A31X, A32X series.

Best for fun (power): 752!

Best seating in a wide-body: Boeing 767-400. 2-3-2 in econ is great.

And my overall fave, now mostly gone: 727! Sexy beast!

PS-Least favorite jet and airline to control: Skywest CR7s.


I’ve always been partial to the ones that land safely, myself.


IMO landing safely is overrated.


While the disingenuousness is annoying, in London it’s unfortunately usually the right choice to strip out seating, if it’s done thoughtfully. Train lengths are often constrained by platform lengths, so until they extend the platforms at the shortest stations, the only way to increase capacity on a lot of lines is to give more room for people to stand. And if you look at, for instance, the new Circle or Overground line trains, it can be done thoughtfully. The seamless carriages and wider bodies do a lot to free up space.


I tend to favour companies instead of airplanes - but I guess that’s not the subject of this topic!

My best flight must have been on a 767… 300, I think?, flown by ANA. Incredible space, incredible seats.
Anything else has been passable (A340 or B747s for long-range, most of the time) or awful (my legs and back are still angry at a 777-something-er flown by Korean Airlines). In my experience, however, I tend to have better flight experiences on Boeing than on Airbus planes.

Most fun was with some Aeroflot landings back in the mid-90s. No idea what the seculary plane models were, but that was some serious bumpy action.


anyone remember “Aerobiz?”


As folks may know from some of my other posts, I’m old. Old enough that my first flight was an Eastern Airlines Connie - Nonstop from Cleveland to Miami. The best things about that airplane were its paint job:

and that it had an actual lounge in the back where you could sit around a couple of little tables. OTOH, like all piston-engined planes, it was noisy as hell. I think our hearing was impaired for days after the flight.