Vintage Airline Seat Map: Eastern Airlines L-1011 TriStar

It’s time for another edition of Vintage Airline Seat Maps and I’ve selected the Eastern Airlines Lockheed L-1011 TriStar appearing below. The L-1011 was the DC-10 alternative with both aircraft exhibiting nearly the same design and passenger volume. Eastern Airlines took delivery of the very first L-1011-1 in early April of 1972 and began passenger service later that month. While popular with the airlines that flew them, Lockheed’s reentry into the commercial aircraft market with this bird eventually failed due to production delays, engine manufacturer issues and the lack of a larger, longer range option in the early development.

This version seated a total of 316 passengers with 28 in first class and 288 in coach. In first you’d find me in either row two or three, likely a window, as row one appears rather tight due to the curvature of the fuselage though I doubt as much as this map makes it appear. In coach my preferred seats would be a window or aisle (on the two-seater sides) in rows 21 or 22. Why not the forward coach zone? Well, back in the 1980s we didn’t have all our wonderful technology to entertain ourselves, so the movie would have been a big highlight for me not to be missed. It’s also nice to see Eastern isolated the smoking section in coach to the rearmost zone aft of doors 3L & 3R.

Where would you sit?

a diagram of an airplane seat


  1. This was the most comfortable flight I have ever taken in economy. The 1011 had a great seat and wonderful space for carryon luggage. Also only 1 person per row (center of middle 5) had to step over 2 people to get up and out of their seat. I flew that as a charter for the AMC Air mobility Command to UK and remember that flight well.

  2. “Two jets, wing mounted” is technically correct, but there are 3 “jets” on the L1011, the third being tail mounted.

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