Trip Report: American Airlines (B737-800) Main Cabin ORD-SAN

The Details

  • Flight: AA2680
  • Aircraft: B737-800
  • Class: Main Cabin
  • Seat: 22A
  • Route: Chicago O’Hare International (ORD)-San Diego International (SAN)
  • Distance: 1,738 miles
  • Duration: 4hrs 18min
  • Departure: 10:06AM
  • Arrival: 12:24PM

The Preflight

After taking my last flight in February 2020, COVID-19 grounded me for eight months. I finally had the chance to fly again with this economy trip to San Diego.

Armed with my surgical mask and hand sanitizer I arrived at Chicago O’Hare’s Terminal 3 two hours before the 10:10AM departure time.

While there were quite a few travelers in the terminal, it was nothing compared to the pre-pandemic madness at the check-in counters.


Every passenger had their masks on and most tried to stay socially distanced from one another.

I made my way to the Admirals Club between the H/K Concourses. While COVID-19 had forced American Airlines to close all Flagship Lounges and a majority of the Admirals Club’s, there was one Club open for flyers at ORD.

Admirals Club

Gone are the buffet style large bowls of breakfast foods in the Admirals Club. Instead, the food was individually packaged. Breakfast options included hard boiled eggs, fresh fruit cups, yogurt, and milk.

There was also cereal, bananas, and oranges.

Carbs included granola and bagels. Toppings on offer included cream cheese, butter, peanut butter, and jelly.

Between 7-10AM the Admirals Club also offers made-to-order avocado toast. A masked and gloved attendant would help create it. Toppings included hard boiled eggs, salmon, prosciutto, onion, tomato, crumbled blue cheese, and feta cheese.

The self-serve espresso machine was still in operation and I had an Americano.

Avocado toast

One reason I love the O’Hare H/K Admirals Club is the amazing views of the apron.


Still feeling peckish, I went back for a second serving of the avocado toast as well as a cream cheese bagel.

Avocado toast

With five minutes to boarding I made my way to Gate H10. Right next to our plane was the special “Piedmont Airlines” livery on a A319, registration N744P.

Piedmont Airlines

Our bird for today was a B737-800, registration N806NN. She was delivered to American Airlines in March 2009.


As I checked ExpertFlyer before boarding, it was showing that this flight would be 100% full. Unlike Delta or Alaska, American Airlines is not blocking middle seats during the pandemic.

Boarding began on time at 9:35AM and the gate area was extremely crowded. Social distancing was near impossible.


The Flight

Upon boarding, each passenger was handed a small plastic bag with a water bottle, Biscoff, and sanitizing wipe. Due to COVID-19, American Airlines has cut back on inflight service. They no longer offer food or alcohol for purchase in the main cabin. In addition, water and canned beverages are not served for economy passengers.

Snack bag

This B737-800 featured American’s newest economy seat offering, dubbed “Project Oasis.” There are a total of 16 first class seats, 30 Main Cabin Extra seats, and 126 Main Cabin seats. Each Main Cabin seat offers 30″ of pitch and is 17″ wide.

American Airlines decided to remove IFE entertainment screens and instead installed a personal device holder in the seatback. Next to the device mount was a USB port.

Device holder

In between the seats was a 110V outlet.


We pushed back on time at 10:10AM and had a fairly long taxi to the runway. The morning bank of departures was well underway.


Enjoy takeoff!

Once in the air I connected my tablet to the American Airlines Wi-Fi. Unfortunately, American decided to remove the inflight map and fleet details from their online interface.


We had clear skies cruising westwards towards California.


The rest of the flight was uneventful. There was no service on the flight but the flight attendants did make two passes through the cabin collecting trash.

As always we had a beautiful view of downtown San Diego on approach to runway 27.

We taxied directly to the terminal and passed by the Alaska Airlines “More to Love” livery B737-800.

“More to Love” Livery

Flight attendants asked all passengers to remain seated and deplaning was done row by row.

Thanks for the ride N806NN!

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