Trip Report: American Airlines (B737-800) Domestic First MCO-ORD

The Details

  • Flight: AA1100
  • Aircraft: B737-800
  • Class: Domestic First
  • Seat: 6A and 6B
  • Route: Orlando International (MCO)-Chicago O’Hare International (ORD)
  • Distance: 1,008 miles
  • Duration: 3hrs 15min
  • Departure: 6:58PM
  • Arrival: 8:26PM

The Preflight

My SO and I arrived from London Gatwick aboard the Virgin Atlantic 747 and had about a four hour lay-over before our flight home to Chicago. We arrived at Terminal B Gate 81 and thanks to Global Entry quickly cleared CBP in about 20 minutes. After taking the tram to the domestic check-in area we made our way to TSA PreCheck. The domestic security area was packed and despite having PreCheck it took us roughly 30 minutes to finally make it pass the check point.

The airport tram took us from the central security area of Terminal B to Airside 3 where American Airlines mainly departs from.

There is a small Admirals Club at MCO next to Gate 54 and 55. There were great views of the airplanes from the lounge sitting area.

AA A321

Food offerings included the usual cheese cubes, hummus, pita chips, hot coup, celery sticks, cookies and brownies. There was also a build-your-own salad bar and hot mac and cheese.

Mac and cheese and salad

Our bird N909NN, a B737-800, was delivered to American Airlines back in 2012. Luckily, it was parked directly in view of us from the Admirals Club.

N909NN B737-800

The Flight

Boarding began on time and my SO and I made our way back to the last row of the first class cabin in row 6. There are 16 first class seats in a 2-2- configuration from rows 3-6. There are no rows 1 or 2.

First Class 6A

American Airlines currently has three sub-fleets of B737-800s. The “Classic” sub-fleet of B737s do not have seatback IFE screens in first class. Meanwhile, the “Enhanced” fleet features seatback IFE screens and larger overhead storage bins. Finally, the “Oasis” sub-fleet features American’s newest Domestic First class product which has personal device mounts but no seatback screen. This aircraft was a “Classic” B737.

Each seat featured 40″ of pitch with 20″ of width. The padding on the leather seats felt very worn and tired.

In between each seat was a small drink holder as well. No pre-departure beverages were offered to us. It is definitely hit-or-miss with crews offering pre-departure beverages.

First Class Seat

In the center between the two seats were two 110V outlets.

110V outlet

We pushed back about two minutes early and had a beautiful dusk view of the American A321 at the gate next to us.

AA A321

After a very quick taxi to the runway we departed in the dark above Orlando.

I connected to the inflight entertainment on my laptop and browsed a few of the movies and TV shows.


Service began with some pipping hot towels followed by a ramekin of warmed mixed nuts and my usual Bloody Mary.

Bloody Mary and mixed nuts

For dinner, I opted for the cholesterol rich braised beef short ribs with mac and cheese accompanied by a fresh garden salad. I also had a delicious pretzel roll.

Braised Beef Short Rib

My SO went with the vegetarian four cheese ravioli which she nibbled on.

Four Cheese Ravioli

As we approached Chicago O’Hare the flight attendants came through the cabin with warm snickerdoodle cookies. Regrettably, my SO’s favorite chocolate chip cookies were not loaded on this flight.

Snickerdoodle cookie

We approached Chicago from the southeast and had some stunning views of the downtown skyscrapers off to the port side of the plane as we flew over Lake Michigan.


After landing we taxied for about 20 minutes making two loops around O’Hare as we waited for a gate assignment. Eventually we got our gate assignment for K20. Thanks for the ride!

This was a perfectly fine Domestic First class flight with AA. The seat, food, and service were exactly what I expected.

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