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The Last Boeing 747 Leaves the Factory


More than two dozen airlines were already committed to buying the 747 when it was first shown to the public. In 1970, the 747 took its maiden commercial flight, ferrying more than 300 Pan Am passengers to London from New York.It became an instant public sensation. The four-engine airplane was much larger than any other and could fit hundreds of people in rows with up to 10 seats across. The upper deck, reachable by a spiral staircase, hosted a luxurious lounge. American Airlines had a piano bar installed in the main cabin.Orders started to flow in, bringing Boeing much-needed revenue. Owning a 747 became a status symbol for airlines. Some companies bought the airplane even though it didn’t quite suit their needs.The most important reason airlines bought the plane was that the 747 h …

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