THEN AND NOW: Photos that show how glamorous flying used to be

Bob Ridpath

Pit Bull love
Usually when you dig in, you find out that these were publicity shots the airplane manufacturers put out that no one ever actually flew on. But it’s nice to dream.
I flew then. It was much, much different. No dreams. Hot breakfast in coach. First class, just a couple times as an extravagance, was amazing.

Yeah ... not just PR, or a dream. I was there.
 

Richman

Well-Known Member
I flew then. It was much, much different. No dreams. Hot breakfast in coach. First class, just a couple times as an extravagance, was amazing.

Yeah ... not just PR, or a dream. I was there.
I’m just barely old enough to remember that going to your gate involved an actual gate in the fence. You walked through it, to the airplane. The airplane had some mechanical contraption on the side requiring some physical exertion to board the airplane.
 

CFI A&P

Exploring the world one toilet at a time.
I'll take the 32 inch seat pitch, internet that works and getting there safely over having airliners fall out of the sky on a regular basis.
My thoughts exactly. When was the last time an airliner was hijacked and the hijackers demanded the plane go to Cuba? I'd take safety over a free meal and smoking cigarettes & cigars while in flight.
 

NovemberEcho

Dergs favorite member
My thoughts exactly. When was the last time an airliner was hijacked and the hijackers demanded the plane go to Cuba? I'd take safety over a free meal and smoking cigarettes & cigars while in flight.
Now they just get flown into buildings or mountains or the ocean.
 

Low&Slow

Ancora imparo
There WAS a “golden age” of flying. It’s just not now, sadly.

I actually wore a tie and sport coat at 13, because that was how people traveled.

Those days are gone, clearly ...
People used to dress like that to attend baseball games too.
People weren't packed in tight like sardines back in the day and you could visit the cockpit too. I remember sitting on the FO's lap in a Super Constellation on the way from Keflavik, Iceland to Goose Bay, Labrador when I was 5 years old. He let me hold the yoke.
On a different flight, the crew showed me how to navigate by the stars through the dome window in the Connie's ceiling on a night flight.
 
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msmspilot

Well-Known Member
I flew then. It was much, much different. No dreams. Hot breakfast in coach. First class, just a couple times as an extravagance, was amazing.

Yeah ... not just PR, or a dream. I was there.
I understand it’s very different, but the large lounges with tons of headroom and no seatbelts were rare outside of publicity photos from Boeing, Douglas, Lockheed, et al.

Sure, there was more leg room, there were meals, and there was actual service, but on an inflation adjusted basis, your ticket now is essentially free. So you lose some things.

I’m just saying these photos aren’t necessarily representative.
 

nibake

Powder hound
Yeah but at least you went down with a stogie in your mouth, a gin and tonic in hand, a hot stewardess on your lap and dressed in your Sunday best
I agree that the photos probably aren't representative, but I also agree that if an airplane is going to go down this would be the way to be.
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
People used to dress like that to attend baseball games too.
People weren't packed in tight like sardines back in the day and you could visit the cockpit too. I remember sitting on the FO's lap in a Super Constellation on the way from Keflavik, Iceland to Goose Bay, Labrador when I was 5 years old. He let me hold the yoke.
On a different flight, the crew showed me how to navigate by the stars through the dome window in the Connie's ceiling on a night flight.
Saw an elderly gentleman driving an older Cadillac around here about a year ago, with TWA stickers in the back window and a personalized license plate of "L1649FE"
 
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