Delta Flight 4502 First Class San Diego-Los Angeles: My Shortest Flight Ever – Review

By Jonathan Spira on 22 July 2013
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The road to San Diego International Airport

The road to San Diego International Airport

The San Diego International Airport’s Commuter Terminal has just four gates. Leaving from this terminal, which first opened in 1996, is as close to flying private as I’ve ever seen without actually doing so.

Delta Air Lines flies from San Diego International Airport, which used to be known as Lindbergh Field, to Atlanta, Cincinnati, Minneapolis, New York, and Salt Lake City from Terminal 2 but flies one of the shortest flights in the system to Los Angeles from the Commuter Terminal.  From takeoff to landing, my flight in June was a scant 27 minutes.

Indeed, it turns out that, while the San Diego-Los Angeles flight isn’t the shortest in Delta’s system (that title goes to Detroit-Flint, Michigan at 56 miles or 90 kilometers), it is in the top 10 at 106 miles (171 kilometers).

While there was (sadly) no TSA Pre-Check station at the Commuter Terminal, there was also no one else on line at the time and I was still able to go through a walk-through metal detector and the process was more or less painless.


The boarding process reminded me of what I’ve seen in the movies of flying in the 1960s and 70s.  Foto2While it had its modern-day elements (boarding passengers with Delta Medallion status right after first class passengers), it was still decidedly informal and passengers walked directly out onto the tarmac, something that is never a problem since San Diego enjoys sunny, mild weather year-round.

At my seat, I found a blanket, pillow, and a bottle of water.


The Canadair CRJ-900 is equipped with 12 first-class recliner seats in a 1-2 configuration.  Each seat is 19.6” wide and pitched at 37”.  There are 12 Economy Comfort seats in the main cabin, each with 34” pitch and a width of 17.3”, and 52 standard seats with the same width and 31” pitch.

My seat, 2A, was a single seat on the left side of the aircraft and had generous legroom.  It was more than comfortable enough for the 27-minute flight.

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