What is an MD80 like?

Apr 3rd, 2004, 04:14 PM
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What is an MD80 like?

From seating diagram it seems to have about 100 seats. That seems large enough (I have an aversion to tiny planes) - so does it feel like a 727 or something similar? Thanks.
gail is offline  
Apr 3rd, 2004, 04:25 PM
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The MD80 is a decedant of the DC-9. It usualy seats about 130-140 in a 2-class setting, with 2-2 in first, and 2-3 (or 3-2) in coach. It's a little narrower than the 727 (which is 3-3).

Two engines in the back, and it gets pretty noisy in the last rows. Try to get a seat as far front as possible.
rkkwan is offline  
Apr 3rd, 2004, 04:35 PM
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McDonnell Douglas -80 is a great workhorse for many airlines. Depending on the seating arrangment it holds +/- 130 plus 2 pilots and usually 3/4 FAs. It's powered by 2 jet engines mounted in the back. Try to get seats towards the front. The last few rows could be noisy as you are sitting right next to the engines. It's a narrow-body plane, meaning it has one isle. Usually it has 2-3 sitting. To compare it with another plane sizewise, it's close to Boeing 737. If you are familiar with 727 and it was ok with you, then this is little bigger.
Very safe plane. No need to worry.

You could see great pictures and read about the plane on Boeings website:


AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Apr 4th, 2004, 04:40 AM
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Thanks for info - it is plane that Delta seems to use on Savannah-Atlanta-Boston route, so with kid in college there we may become experts on this plane.
gail is offline  
Apr 4th, 2004, 05:24 AM
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Gail...The Delta MD-80 is configured 3seats-aisle-2seats.....unlkess you have just regular old Medallion status, at eth VERY least, you will not get seats until the mid 20's row-wise..virtually all of the economy seats ahead of the emrgency exits,usually 21-23 are blocked for their premium frequent flyers.No matter how far in advance you book.I dont fly Delta often but after my first trip on and MD-80 I just got a pair of ear plugs and it was fine as I knew I would end up in the very back.But it was OK.
BeachBoi is offline  
Apr 4th, 2004, 08:26 AM
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Delta uses a mix aircraft types on ATL-BOS, including MD-80 (M80), 737-800 (738), 757-200 (757), 767-300 (763) and 767-400 (764). The 767s are wide-bodies, and the 764 is a brand new plane.

ATL-SAV is flown with M80, 738, 757, and Canadian Regional Jet (CRJ).
rkkwan is offline  
Apr 5th, 2004, 09:11 AM
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Its a smaller jet that has been around for a while. Its not my favorite because I've always experienced alot of turbulence while on them. Small planes aren't all that bad. I took a 32 seat plane from Pgh-Dayton (Dornier 328 turbo-prop) one time RT and it was the smoothest, most comfortable ride I've ever had in my life and I am not some who flys great (air sickness). Maybe it was not such a bumpy ride because we only cruised at about 10,000 feet.
Stephanie is offline  
Apr 6th, 2004, 11:29 AM
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I'm looking at a Delta seat map for an M80 flight and only the first 3 rows are blocked (and exit row), seat selection is available starting with row 13 for non-medallions.
Patty is offline  
Apr 6th, 2004, 11:53 AM
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The MD-80 is, as others have said, a workhorse for American and Delta due to its reliability and ease of maintenance and turnaround. It's a bit smaller than the 727, but you don't really feel the difference all that much. No entertainment systems as a general rule, which is a minus if your flight is much longer than 2 hours.

Turbulence? Depends on the route and the weather that particular day, I'd say. At cruising altitude, it's less of an issue in any jet. I find the turboprops' ride to be sufficiently rough that I won't fly them at all, but that's because I've flown (practically) sideways in a Saab ICH-LCH and refuse to go through that again. At 10,000 ft the turbulence will be much more dramatic-- if there is any. Glass-smooth air at that altitude is not unheard of-- but I've never experienced it. I've gotten bounced around LAX-LAS every time-- but the planes almost never made cruising altitude in the 45 minutes they were in the air.
rjw_lgb_ca is offline  
Apr 6th, 2004, 05:19 PM
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smoothest landing and take off in the sky!!!
seafox is offline  
Apr 7th, 2004, 10:20 AM
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... I meant "IAH-LCH", of course. Memory suppression is a marvelous thing, but it does let one slip up on details like airport codes....

MD-80s are a sentimental favorite of mine-- they built them three miles from where I live, where they now build its successor, the Boeing 717, which is more fuel-efficient, somewhat quieter, and just as beautiful in the air. I don't know if that perceived smoothness is due to the clean wing configuration, but I do love the pretty lines.
rjw_lgb_ca is offline  
Apr 7th, 2004, 03:02 PM
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I seem to spend my life on these planes, since RDU is a non-hub airport and I'm always having to connect, be it Delta or American.

They are entirely serviceable, and I like that so many rows are forward of the wing, so most people can have a window seat if they want and the exit rows are back quite a ways. The 3/2 seating is also more pleasant if you can get on the 2 side. Flights are increasingly overbooked, so it's rare to be on the 3 side and have the middle seat empty, but it happens, and that's nice.

The downside is that they are not equipped for anything but very basic beverage and snack-packet service; and the room under the window seat is reduced because of the strut holding up the seat.

Turbulence is a function of the weather and altitude more than anything else (although some of the jumbo jets cause enough of their own turbulence that sometimes sitting in the far rear is a little jumpy). Sometimes you get serious turbulence from high-altitude wind "rivers" curling around fronts and/or the jet stream, but you can also get really unpleasant turbulence at lower altitudes from instability because of frontal changes or ordinary afternoon summer thunderstorms. The MD80s are always going to fly somewhere between 24,000 and maybe 32,000, which can go either way. ("rjw.." is right that at 10,000 feet turbulence can be pretty dramatically bad.) I've had very smooth flights on them and a real tooth-cracking flight over the Rockies once, but the average is not bad and I get sick easily.

Apr 7th, 2004, 08:37 PM
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Thanks again - this has all been interesting reading. Who knew people could be so passionate about a plane. Now whenever I fly I promise to pay closer attention to the equipment and not just worry if it lands safely.
gail is offline  
Apr 9th, 2004, 03:46 PM
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I fly MD-80s a lot on Americsn and I'm happy for many of the reasons mentioned -- the 2 seat side, so many seats in front of the wing ... very few seats with bad engine noise [but those that have it OH BOY.

In our family it's known as the "silver cigar" for it's length vs width. I'd take it over a 77 any day.
sfowler is offline  
Apr 9th, 2004, 03:47 PM
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That was a 737 -- my keyboard is glitchy these days.
sfowler is offline  
Apr 13th, 2004, 03:59 PM
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If you have a seat in the back near those 2 engines you can't hear yourself think, try to get moved as soon as you can find a FA. Buck
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