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Which Airline Has the Best Lie-Flat Transcontinental Seats?

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TPG reader Nicholas tweeted me to ask

@thepointsguy—”Which airline has the best lie-flat transcontinental product?”

The top contenders are for best lie-flat on transcontinental flights are American, United, Delta, and JetBlue. I’ve flown all four, and I think my favorite may surprise you.

Delta flies 767's and 757's with lie flat seats between JFK-LAX and JFK-SFO.
Delta flies 767’s and 757’s with lie-flat seats between JFK-LAX and JFK-SFO.

Here are the dimensions of the lie-flat seats you’ll find on transcontinental flights with each of those carriers:

  • American First: 82.5 inches length,  21 inches width
  • American Business: 75-78 inches length,  18.5-9.5 inches width
  • JetBlue Mint: 80 inches length, 22.3 inches width
  • United: 77 inches length, 21 inches width
  • Delta 767: 79 inches length, 21 inches width
  • Delta 757: 76 inches length, 20 inches (expandable to 22 inches) width
And the winner is: JetBlue Mint!
And the winner is … JetBlue Mint!

In my opinion, the best product is JetBlue Mint IF you can get rows two or four in the single seats, known as the JetBlue Mint Suites. I’ve chosen this product for a few reasons:

1. Privacy/Comfort.

In the new five-row Mint cabin, there are 16 fully lie-flat seats that extend up to 82 inches, which means that even at 6’7″, I can just about stretch all the way out. Twelve of the seats are open, 20.5 inches wide, and arranged in 2 x 2 configuration in rows one, three and five. The other four are the Mint Suites, which are private, closed-door suites 22 inches wide and arranged 1 x 1 in rows two and four.

The single seats in Rows two or four give you so much space to yourself, more than any other Business class product, and those are clearly the ones to get. Plus, you can even close the door! The 757 planes are typically only single aisle, and even though you may have a lie-flat, if you’re at the window you’ll have to climb over someone to exit your row. One exception to this are some 767 Delta aircraft that have two aisles.

2. Food. JetBlue Mint offers you a choice of meals, which I really like. Saxon and Parole is the restaurant that works with JetBlue, and they offer a lot of healthy, delicious options.

3. Affordability. The price for this product is really reasonable; it’s not a good use of points, but that’s another topic! If you’re paying out of pocket, JetBlue Mint is a good option.

Although you don’t get any lounge access, since the question was solely about the lie-flat product itself, I would still go with JetBlue Mint. I’ve only flown this product once, and I was not in row two or four, but everyone I talked to said the suites were great.

American flies the A321 between JFK-LAX with lie-flat seats in First Class.
American flies the A321 between JFK-LAX with lie-flat seats in First Class.

Please feel free to share your own opinion in the comments below.

If you have any other questions, please tweet me @thepointsguy, message me on Facebook, or send me an email at info@thepointsguy.com.

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