Monochrome Monday is a photo of the stairs to the upper deck on a Delta Air Lines 747-400.
The Delta upper deck seemed like heaven. It was the best business-class cabin on any commercial airliner. With only 14 lie-flat seats arranged 1-1, two dedicated flight attendants, and being positioned just behind the flight deck, traveling on the Delta 747 upper deck felt like flying on a private jet even though there were almost 400 passengers below.
The photo provides a sense of how steep and narrow the stairs were. Navigating the stairs with a heavy carry-on bag and a backpack was challenging even for the sober and physically fit. An elevator would have been handy. In fact, 747s have a small elevator but it is reserved for moving galley carts between decks.
In the industry-wide search for greater fuel economy and lower operating costs, airlines have been phasing out most of their four-engine airliners like the Boeing 747 and Airbus 380. In October 2017, I flew a final Delta 747 farewell flight with several other frequent-flyer friends. Delta grounded its last 747 in December 2017.
The “stairway to heaven” on the Delta 747 is the only part of the business class (Delta One) experience I won’t miss.