Here's What First Class Air Travel Looked Like in the 1930s

By | August 25, 2017

In the 1930s, America's airline industry expanded at a rapid rate, from carrying only 6,000 passengers in 1930 to more than 450,000 by 1934, to 1.2 million by 1938. Still, only business travelers and the wealthy could afford air travel. Most people prefer buses and trains to go between cities.

The very commercial aircraft were narrow and long, and whatever passenger seats they had were perceived as an innovation already, a kind of luxury and an optional extra, like caviar sandwiches with butter. The first seats made use of common chairs. There were no seat belts and no partitions, passengers sat right behind the pilot.