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My husband and I usually fly jetblue when we travel, so I guess he got used to newer planes. Last year, we flew out to Orlando on Jet Blue & home on American. (It was a 757 plane) My husband felt that that plane seemed so old (he said the inside seemed like it had not been updated since the 70's!). The flight was fine, & this year I was thinking of using my american points to fly us roundrtp to Orlando in august (from ny), he's saying he is uncomfortable flying them since the plane seemed so old, I gues he's worried about plane upkeep with all these serious labor disputes going on between maintance workers, pilots & management.
Any thoughts? (I'm trying to convince him to fly american, i'm sure the plane maintinence is just fine...I hope)
Also, with talk of a meger with US airways, i'm hoping not to lose all my points
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Personally, I wouldn't worry too much about it. The planes are maintained to strict standards mechanically, so even if the interior looks a little older - I'm sure all of the important parts are in good shape.
Maybe it's just the eternal optimist in me, but I wouldn't even worry about the labor disputes much.
BTW - I fell in love with JetBlue on my last trip to Disney and was so disappointed that they no longer make non-stops from the Washington/Dulles airport. We're taking Airtran this time, and while I like Airtran, JetBlue was a definite favorite for seat comfort/size and the tv in the back of the headrests!
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American Airlines fleet is about 15 years old, but while 15 years is a lot for a vehicle, all aircraft maintained by a schedule. The FAA has very strict standards. AMR has a order of over 200 Airbus Aircraft which will update the fleet. I would fell safe flying in a old Aircraft.
Aircraft have a much longer service life than we are used to with typical vehicles, like the cars and trucks that we are used to every day. It is not uncommon for a 20 or 30 year old plane to still be in service providing daily use, though when they do get older they usually get sold off to courier companies whose customers don't really care how old the plane looks
And if it makes you husband feel any better, look at all the issues the brand new 787 aircraft from Boeing have been having... brand new, top of tech planes aren't immune to it
There is a B52 out there that has had three generations of a family command it. The newest Buffs are from the early 60s, although most have been updated many, many times.
With pressurized a/c the main issue is "cycles". Each time you pressurize and depressurize the fuselage (hull) put strain on the body work. BUT a/c like the 757 have a lot of carbon fiber in the body. Neat thing about that is that it "likes" that kind of cycling.
There are several different types of airworthiness directives (ADs) that can be issued by the FAA. The one most people hear about are fleet groundings. But the most common one is "fix at service". Inspect and repair is also pretty common.
The inside of the aircraft doesn't count for anything as far as service is concerned. That just tells you that either the airline is too cheap to spruce things up or it hasn't hit that part of the maintenance cycle.