Review: Delta One 767 New York To Los Angeles

Filed Under: Delta

Delta 472
New York (JFK) – Los Angeles (LAX)
Wednesday, November 22
Depart: 7:00AM
Arrive: 10:25AM
Duration: 6hr25min
Aircraft: Boeing 767-400
Seat: 7A (Business Class)

I boarded through door L2, and turned left into the business class cabin. The 767-400 is a fairly rare plane, and it has been quite a while since I’ve flown on one. The Delta One cabin on the 767-400 is big, with a total of 40 seats spread across 10 rows.

Delta 767 business class cabin

Seats are in a staggered configuration, and on the plus side, every seat has direct aisle access. However, unfortunately given that the 767 isn’t actually that wide of a plane, the seats feel narrow. Really narrow.

Delta 767 business class cabin

As far as the window seats go, they alternate between being closer to the aisle and closer to the window. In even numbered rows the seats are closer to the aisle, which are the less preferred seats in this configuration, as you basically feel like you’re sitting in the aisle and have no privacy.

Delta 767 business class seat

As you can see, the console is to the side of the seat closest to the window, so you have to lean over to look out the window.

Delta 767 business class seat

In general the preferred seats in this configuration are the window seats in the odd numbered rows, as they have some separation from the aisle, and feel somewhat private.

Delta 767 business class seat

Unfortunately, though, these seats are really narrow.

Delta 767 business class seat

As you can see, in these seats the footwell is also closer to the window.

Delta 767 business class seat

On one hand it’s nice to sleep further from the aisle, while on the other hand the seat felt uncomfortably tight when reclined. We joke about seats being like coffins, but I couldn’t move my feet an inch when I was reclined due to how small the footwell is. So while I appreciate that these seats have direct aisle access, I’d prefer a standard forward facing configuration where you can at least sleep comfortably.

Delta business class legroom

In terms of the seat’s other features, to the side of my seat were the seat controls, which were quite easy to use.

Delta business class seat controls

What wasn’t easy to use, however, was the tray table. It’s horribly designed because the seat has no storage, so you’d naturally store things on the “counter” next to the seat. However, to get out your tray table you have to lift that counter and take out the tray table. Beyond that, once the tray table is out there’s very little wiggle room.

Delta business class tray table

Delta business class tray table

Behind that area and to the side of the seat was a reading light, headphone jacks, and outlets (including 110v and USB).

Delta business class seat outlet, headphone jacks, and reading light

Then waiting on my seat on boarding was an amenity kit, headphones, bedding, and a bottle of water.

Delta business class amenity kit, headphones, and water

Delta offers Tumi amenity kits, which are phenomenal. The cases themselves are beautiful, and they’re extremely well stocked, especially when you consider that this is just a transcon flight on which they’re offering them. I think these are the best amenity kits offered by any airline in business class.

Delta Tumi amenity kit contents

What’s also cool is that you can get these kits monogrammed at a Tumi store for free, if you’d like.

Delta Tumi amenity kit

As far as the headphones go, Delta recently switched their headphones to LSTN. I must be missing something, because I found these headphones to be awful, in terms of their lack of noise cancelation and comfort. Am I the only one who feels this way? Were my headphones defective? I’m not sure…

Delta business class LSTN headphones

Then Delta has Westin Heavenly Bedding. I remember back in the day when this was cutting edge, though Delta hasn’t changed their bedding in years, while American and United have been catching up. Still, the pillow and duvet were both very comfortable.

Delta Westin Heavenly bedding

About 10 minutes after settling in I was offered a pre-departure beverage, with the choice between champagne and orange juice. On the plus side, they serve pre-departure beverages in glassware. However, the pour of champagne I got was tiny.

Delta business class sparkling wine

A few minutes later a flight attendant came through the cabin distributing menus.

Delta One menu

By 6:55AM boarding was complete and the door was closed, with every seat on the plane taken (including Nick Jonas being seated across from me — cool). At that point the captain came on the PA to wish everyone a happy Thanksgiving and inform us of our quick flight time of 5hr10min, which he anticipated would put us into Los Angeles early.

A moment later the flight leader welcomed us aboard on behalf of himself and the seven NYC based flight attendants. They screened the safety video, which features flight attendants from their “global partners.” This is minor, but I really like how Delta flight attendants stand in the aisle at the front of the cabin during the safety demonstration, rather than yapping in the galley.

Our taxi to our departure runway was quick, and by 7:15AM we were cleared for takeoff on runway 31L. We hit quite a bit of turbulence on the climb out, which was consistent for a while.

View after takeoff from New York

View after takeoff from New York

About 30 minutes after takeoff the captain announced that the turbulence would continue for a while, and that we’d be leveling off at 28,000 feet initially due to the bumpy ride, and would eventually climb higher. While it looked nice above the clouds, the chop continued for a while.

View enroute to Los Angeles

Once the seatbelt sign was turned off I checked one of the lavatories located behind the cabin. The two business class lavatories are behind the cabin, and that really isn’t all that many for 40 business class passengers.

Delta One lavatory

The lavatory was small and no frills, with the exception of the Malin + Goetz soap and hand cream, which I like.

Delta One Malin & Goetz toiletries

Just under an hour after takeoff the crew distributed warm towels, which were noticeably thicker than you get on American and United.

Delta One warm towel

At that point the breakfast service began. The menu read as follows:

The drink list read as follows:

A bit over an hour after takeoff tablecloths were distributed.

Delta One tablecloth

Then one flight attendant rolled a cart down each aisle with the first course of the meal and drinks.

To drink I had a cup of coffee and the green apple, cucumber, and spinach juice. I was pleasantly surprised by how fresh the juice tasted — it wasn’t some sugary artificial tasting juice, but actually tasted healthy (whether or not that was actually the case, I’m not sure).

Delta One breakfast — coffee and juice

I was also offered the first course of breakfast. This included fruit (melon, pineapple, kiwi, and strawberry) with a cinnamon-honey yogurt dipping sauce. Then there an appetizer of barbecue smoked salmon with asparagus, boiled eggs, pickled shallots, and creamy mustard dressing. Then there was also a pecan bar. Lastly, I was offered the choice of either a bagel or croissant out of a breadbasket.

I’ve gotta say, the food was excellent. The fruit was tasty, the appetizer good, the bagel warm and fresh, etc.

Delta One breakfast

Eventually appetizers were cleared, and then main courses were brought out. I selected the baked eggs, with fall vegetables and smoked gouda cheese, with a side of beef sausage and breakfast potatoes.

Delta One breakfast

This was easily one of the best breakfasts I’ve ever had on a domestic flight. The food was exceptionally good, and I liked the juice as well. However, the service was on the slow side and not very personalized (it really felt like an assembly line), and this crew wasn’t especially charming either. They weren’t actively bad, but they didn’t smile and didn’t seem very proactive.

After breakfast I decided to get some work done, so connected to Gogo Wi-Fi. While I have a Gogo monthly pass, the Wi-Fi pricing for this flight was ~$40, which is steep.

Delta Gogo Wi-Fi pricing

I also checked out the entertainment selection. While I appreciate the seatback entertainment, the screen was small, low quality, and difficult to use. There wasn’t a remote with which you could control the seat functions, so your only option was to push the actual screen with your fingers.

The problem is that parts of the screen were unresponsive so that it made it impossible to click certain parts, and as a result I had a hard time scrolling between pages, etc. Below are some pictures of the selection I was able to see.

Delta One entertainment selection

Delta One entertainment selection

Delta One entertainment selection

And here are some pictures of the airshow:

Airshow enroute to Los Angeles

Airshow enroute to Los Angeles

Airshow enroute to Los Angeles

Airshow enroute to Los Angeles

The crew wasn’t very attentive after the meal service, though they did respond to call lights. About an hour after breakfast they came through with the snack basket, and they brought it back through an hour before landing. I was so full, so didn’t have anything. Then about 45 minutes before landing they distributed sugar cookies. Yum!

Delta One cookie

I worked for most of the flight, and soon enough we were starting our descent into Los Angeles. At 9AM PT the captain announced that we’d be landing in about 30 minutes.

Airshow enroute to Los Angeles

View approaching Los Angeles

View approaching Los Angeles

As we approached LAX we had a parallel approach with a China Eastern 777, which was so cool to watch.

Parallel landing LAX

View approaching LAX

We had a very firm touchdown on LAX’s runway 24R at 9:30AM.

Touchdown LAX

From there we crossed runway 24L, and then had a 15 minute taxi to our arrival gate.

Taxiing LAX

Taxiing LAX

Given the congestion issues at LAX I was worried our gate wouldn’t be available, though we arrived at 9:45AM, a full 40 minutes ahead of schedule, and parked next to a Delta 777.

Delta 777 LAX

Delta business class 767 bottom line

Delta excels when it comes to their meal service and Tumi amenity kits. Other than that, this flight left me disappointed.

I really don’t like business class Delta’s 767s (while they’re great in economy due to the 2-3-2 configuration) and they have a lot of them. The seats are narrow and tight and the personal televisions are low quality. While the direct aisle access is nice, personally I’d take the business class seats American has on their A321s, or that United has on their 757s, over this. I’d note that sometimes Delta flies A330s with reverse herringbone seats between New York and Los Angeles, in which case that’s a heck of a product.

Beyond that, though, the crew certainly wasn’t as good as I’ve become accustomed to on Delta, but every US airline is going to have inconsistent service.

If you’ve flown Delta One on a transcon flight, what was your experience like?

  1. The screens feel super old on those planes. I mean whatever, but if you were to walk back a few rows and check out the new economy ones, they’re leaps and bounds better.

    It’s really amazing how service differs based on where the crew is from. I’m a Delta flyer so I can’t speak for other domestic legacy carriers, but on Delta if you get a Minneapolis- or SLC-based crew, it’ll probably be one of the best crews you’ve ever experienced. If your crew is based in New York (or sometimes LA) you’re usually in for some sass. 🙂

  2. Delta is so close to having a really great experience(for a US carrier) with their D1. And as you said. their A330’s are a better than their ancient ’67’s.
    The family slept well TATL but they’re all under 5’4″. At 6″ I always feel a bit squashed, especially at my feet.
    Food and service are usually quite good(again probably not compared to most Asian carriers).
    Just a few more inches for shoulders and feet would make this a very nice experience.

  3. I agree that the touchscreens can be unresponsive. But there actually is a little remote that is hidden under a panel. You can see it in the photos above. It’s under the panel under your right elbow, if you’re sitting in one of the seats with the table / console on the right.

  4. Hello, are there any tips regarding awards with Delta? I’m used to United/Star Alliance. How does Delta work regarding partner airlines and do seats open up on Air France closer to travel. I recently flew first on Lufthansa ORD-MUC, but I had to make the change shortly before traveling.

  5. Flew this (hard) product JFK-LHR a few years ago, the seats are narrow and the footwell far to small, especially when in bed mode.

    Those issues aside, your flight catering and amenity kit wise are far better than AA’s offering.

  6. Lucky, I also like the thicker real towel style that Asian airlines use as their refresher towel. You can really tell when domestic carriers are just using cheap disposable basically cheesecloth / shop rags. And the worst thing is the FAs prepare them by just pouring hot water over them instead of them being properly moistened (and wrung out) type, leaving you with a dripping hot mess to deal with.

  7. @Spruce Goods – not sure that’s right. Have definitely not heard anything about that. Plus, DL’s 764s would be 18-20 years old by the time that happens.

  8. There is a remote for the AVOD system in a compartment just below the tray table. It’s adjacent to the metal trim piece stamped with the Delta logo, and visible in several of your pictures.

  9. The proper way to fly Delta on a transcon is in the back of the plane. Delta and Virgin have the best economy transcon experiences out there, and Delta’s is usually pretty inexpensive.

  10. I have flown in Delta One on the 767 configuration a few times now between US & Europe (though not on the 400 as far as I know)… I too experienced the same “issue” with the entertainment touch-screen (couldn’t scroll, etc)… HOWEVER… I just learned on my LAST flight that there IS a remote tucked away in a compartment next to the tray-table. It is obviously “not obvious” as I never noticed it before…until I saw another passenger with a remote and asked the attendant about it… sure enough, there it was…and problem solved…

    Do agree with you – much prefer the A330 configuration over the 767… unfortunately seems like the 767 is the most offered plane for my flights…

  11. I DESPISE those seats. As you said they are narrow, there is no storage whatsoever, the table is annoying and this IFE is 20 years behind. Whenever I fly a transcon on Delta One, I make sure to pick the 757 over the 767. Screw direct aisle access and no neighbor, the seats are so much more comfortable and the IFE is brand new.

  12. I have flown this plane in DeltaOne from ATL-FRA. I was told to get the bulkhead seat as it had a larger footwell. It had a larger footwell but it was such a claustrophobic seat. You see nothing but the bulkhead. A closet next to you and a window. The flight was delayed so I sat there for over 10 hours. I couldn’t see another person. I was bored to tears. And a little sensory deprived.

  13. …for those of you going to fly the 767 – to find the remote – see Lucky’s pic of the tray table in his article above… look to the right where there is a white cord in his photo – that grey “arm rest” directly beneath the white cord you see is where the remote is stored (if I remember correctly)…

  14. Ben, I think Mark S. is right. I flew this cabin recently and it was almost impossible to find the remote if you didn’t know where it was (that cubby).

  15. The secret with the 764 is to book row 1, which has huge cutouts in the bulkhead for feet when sleeping. Should also note that these were flying JFK-LHR quite frequently and DL’s moving their 333’s to that route, so the 764 will be on JFK-LAX far more frequently.

  16. I’m glad I’m not the only one to have had problems with the screens. I flew NYC to LAX a week or so ago, and the part of the screen where the volume was adjusted was not responsive. The volume was set to full and couldn’t be lowered and was unbearably loud. I wasn’t able to watch anything as a result.

  17. Delta 757s on this route are the same seats as AA and UA biz class.

    Is the 767 footwell that small compared to the 757 seats???

  18. Delta’s LSTN headphones are bad. They must not be worth much because the FAs don’t collect them and they have a standard headphone jack. The 48 premium economy passengers on DL’s A350-900 get the same headphones, and they aren’t collected there either.

    I agree about the footwell problem on the DL 767-400. The DL 767-300 and even the A350-900 business-class suites suffer from the same problem.

  19. i just use my free t-mobile gogo pass with my plus plan which is unlimited . of course only works on mobile but still nice (regular tmo one i know only allows 60 minutes

  20. LSTN headphones are bad. I flew on 757-200 Delta One seats. Both mine and my seat mate’s headphones have static noise running on the background. I will avoid it without hesitation.

  21. surprised that you loved the catering! I have flown D1 a couple of times in the recent past and found the catering to be terrible. Glad for you it was good. NYC based crews tend to be unfriendly and stand offish A pity. I too am a native NY’ker but if you are looking for a warm fuzzy feeling………….you need a NON NY based crew

  22. Does the 767-300 on the JFk-SFO route have the exact type of window seats? So I should choose an odd numbered seat to be closer to the window?

  23. If you are 6ft. tall or more always chose the odd number window seats. Even numbers have about 3 inches less pitch. If windows are all taken, go for the center section.

  24. Agree with @Garrett. Where the DL crew is from makes a difference, Midwest and Seattle crews are usually a friendlier, more service orientated bunch. The NYC and LA crews can be more variable.

    Also… champagne for PDB file that under “hell no”! DL doesn’t even open champagne on its international D1 flights for PDB. There’s no way in hell they do for the transcons. Likely their usual, and utterly unremarkable, sparkling wine.

  25. I flew Delta One yesterday in the 767-400 SFO-JFK. Your review closely matches my impressions about the service, including the disappearing crew, and the IFE issues. I could only scroll with the armrest remote. My partner’s armrest remote did not work so fortunately his screen mostly worked. My seat stopped working half way through the flight, so the lead attendant submitted a request to have a bunch of skymiles dumped into my account. My take home messages are that the in cabin equipment is probably hitting the end of its usable life and the crew was pleasant but disappeared for about half of the flight. I did like that they used real glasses for the PDB.

  26. crew disappears, apathetic, complacent, fake smiles, flash/pizzazz-no/little substance, and not sincere. american air travel–no thank you. proclamations-declaration of quality/new/great–basically, a chocolate covered turd.

  27. @Sara N. – so exactly how would you get from New York to Los Angeles?

    And there is an easy trick to getting good, sincere service: fly JetBlue. Or Alaska/Virgin America.

  28. I’m 6’-4”. I’ve taken Delta 767 Delta 1 service SFO/JFK and LAX/Europe several times. Other than the window seat foot wells being tight, I have no issue with their 767 service, in fact I like it. The attendants are friendly enough yet they don’t bug so much as to become bothersome.

  29. CraigTPA–we stay away from domestic travel–it’s putrid. If we “need” to go to NY, or LA–train or bus.

  30. “I really like how Delta flight attendants stand in the aisle at the front of the cabin during the safety demonstration, rather than yapping in the galley.”

    They’re required to do this by policy, much like the pilots (at least 1 of them) is to be at the door saying goodbye to passengers as they leave the aircraft. I agree, it’s a nice touch, much like it used to be done. I believe Delta still requires pilots to wear their hats when in public as well.

    My biggest gripe with DL trans-cons is that ATL-LAX and MSP-LAX isn’t considered a trans-con! No Delta One service for this route, which is very likely how most people flying in the DL network will get to LAX. Pisses me off to pay for “First Class” and get nothing for it. While I do like the Mad Dogs, especially how quiet the pointy end is, there’s nothing First Class about a Mad Dog.

  31. @AlexS Delta has been known rarely to fly their 77L with SkyCoffins between LAX and ATL to reposition for the LAX-SYD flight, but no D1 service. It’s ironic that from their largest hub they haven’t figured out how to reward Platinums/Diamonds with more motivation to use their RPUs.

  32. As noted, with a cabin with 40 seats, it’s hard to get good service with just 1 attendant per aisle.

    For example, I was skipped over for water and for the desert of the main service recently on JFK-LAX. By the way, it happened on international Delta One too. In most cases, the attendants just don’t care. You don’t even get the advertised benefits.

  33. Here in Portland where we are “lucky” to have a 3x weekly direct flight to London on the old 767s (in addition to our TWO other daily direct international flights…) I am just happy it is Delta and not American or United.
    1A & 1D are the best seats in Business as the foot cubies are not restricted. My wife and I select them even when flying together as we sleep most the flight after a meal and movie.
    Download some movies from Netflix or itunes before boarding and watch in 4k on an iPad nicer than any airplane screen. And start watching the moment you board, skipping over all the paused announcements and safety briefings.

  34. Hi all,

    Which seat would you prefer on this plane 2A or 5C? on 767-300 as above

    2A is not a true Window, i.e. divider is near window.
    5C is middle seat with two dividers on both ends (and someone next to you on the left)

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