Delta Air Lines is rolling back its current lie-flat seating offer on its 2,441-mile New York John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) route to San Diego International Airport (SAN). The flight takes six hours from JFK to SAN and five hours and thirty minutes back. The change comes as, according to The Points Guy, the flights will no longer be serviced by Boeing 757s but rather Boeing 737s that, instead of Delta One seating, have standard first class seating.

As The Points Guy obtained a statement from Delta Air Lines spokesperson Drake Castadena regarding the change:

“As with any route, we are constantly evaluating which aircraft is best-suited to operate the service. Beginning early next year, Delta’s JFK-SAN route will be operated on the 737.”

Boeing 737 family aircraft on the Delta Air Lines route will take over from Boeing 757-200s starting on February 12, 2023.

What is Delta One seating?

Delta One is Delta Air Lines’ business class seating with lie-flat seating made of 100% recycled polyester (rPET) bedding, which comes with an amenity kit, a dedicated flight attendant, premium food and drink menu, in-flight entertainment (IFE), and finally, both 110-volt and USB power outlets available. Most of these services and certainly lie-flat seating is not available in other airlines’ first-class cabin on nonstop routes. Still, JetBlue does offer its Mint service with lie-flat seating and in-flight entertainment.

Delta One flat bed seat

Photo: Delta Air Lines

Delta Air Lines says on its website;

On board, you’ll experience a higher standard of flying with the must-haves you won’t find on just any airline. You’ll enjoy a 180-degree flat-bed seat, a dedicated flight attendant, and an assortment of special amenities to make your journey a comfortable one.

So for those who want to fly and earn Delta Air Lines SkyMiles frequent flyer points between California and New York City’s JFK International Airport in lie-flat seating, they’ll have to connect to either a Los Angeles or San Francisco flight to JFK International Airport.

Delta Air Lines Boeing 737-900 First Class Cabin - 737-900_12

Photo: Delta Air Lines

At least with the Boeing 737 family aircraft that will be used on the route, as per the above photo, the aircraft will still have first class seating – but a recliner instead of a lie-flat bed. Nonetheless, let’s compare the two aircraft.

Delta Air Line’s Boeing 757-200 vs. Boeing 737s

Delta Air Lines 737-800 and A 757 at KSEA Gates

Photo: Joe Kunzler | Simple Flying

For Delta Air Lines, the 757-200 configured with Delta One seating as 75S comes with 16 Delta One seats, 44 Delta Comfort seats, and 108 main cabin seats for a total of 168 seats. 757-200s can fly up to 4,488 miles also after the modifications that Delta Air Lines made to the jets, more than sufficient for the 2,441 nautical miles SAN-JFK route. Unlike many other carriers around the world, Delta Air Lines has chosen to keep operating the 757 due to its fuel efficiency and flexibility.

A Boeing 737-832(WL) Rising Into Blue Sky

Photo: Joe Kunzler | Simple Flying

This is comparable to a Boeing 737-800, as pictured above, with 16 first class seats, 36 Delta Comfort seats, and 108 main cabin seats that can go 3,115 nautical miles. The Boeing 737-900ER for Delta Air Lines comes with 20 first class seats, 21 Delta Comfort seats, and 139 main cabin seats for 180 seats, and has a range of 3,393 nautical miles. So yes, as the Boeing 737 family has grown – so too has its capability to go from the little jet that could to the United States favored jetliner for cross-continental flights.

What do you think about Delta’s changes? Let us know in the comments.

  • Delta A350

    Delta Air Lines

    IATA/ICAO Code:

    Airline Type:
    Full Service Carrier

    Boston Logan International Airport, Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Los Angeles International Airport, Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, New York JFK Airport, LaGuardia Airport, Salt Lake City International Airport, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport

    Year Founded:


    Ed Bastian

    United States

  • britishairways_216862008867490 (1)

    New York JFK Airport

    IATA/ICAO Code:

    United States

    Rick Cotton (Executive Director of Port Authority of NY and NJ)

    Passenger Count :
    16,630,642 (2020)

    Runways :
    4L/22R – 3,682m (12,079 ft) |4R/22L – 2,560m (8,400 ft) |13L/31R – 3,048m (10,000 ft) |13R/31L – 4,423m (14,511 ft)

    Terminal 1 |Terminal 2 |Terminal 4 |Terminal 5 |Terminal 7 |Terminal 8

  • San Diego International Airport

    IATA/ICAO Code:

    United States

    Passenger Count :
    15,602,505 (2021)

    Runways :
    09/27 – 2,865m (9,400ft)

    Alaska Airlines

    Terminal 1 | Terminal 2


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