Newly Restored Boeing 747 Prototype Now Open to the Public

Shuttered for decades, interior of first Jumbo Jet finally revealed

SEATTLE – The first Boeing 747 was never an airliner. For over 25 years it was used by Boeing for flight tests until the plane was retired and grounded in the 1990s, then moved to The Museum of Flight years later. Now, after nearly two years of interior and exterior restoration, the aircraft’s mysterious cabin is open to the general public. Tours of the unique Jumbo Jet are offered every day until Oct. 31, and are free with admission to the Museum. Beginning in November, regular interior tours will be suspended for the winter.

Boeing 747-121 PrototypeBoeing 747-121 Prototype
The 747 is one the most recognizable aircraft in the world and represents a milestone in the evolution of aviation design. The growing worldwide demand for air travel during the 1960s led to the development of the 747, the first Jumbo Jet. It was an undertaking that forced the Boeing Company to risk much of its net worth. It is taller than a six-story building, has seating for 374 passengers (up to 550 in some configurations), a takeoff weight of more than 300 tons (or ten fully-loaded 18 wheel trucks), and enough fuel in its tanks to power a small automobile around the globe 36 times.

The Museum’s aircraft was the first 747 ever built – serial number 001. It first flew on February 9, 1969 over Western Washington. Later, this aircraft served as a testbed for 747 systems improvements and new engine developments for other Boeing commercial jets, including the state-of-the-art Boeing 777 engine program.

The Museum of Flight is located at 9404 E. Marginal Way S., Seattle, Exit 158 off Interstate 5 on Boeing Field half-way between downtown Seattle and Sea-Tac Airport. The Museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $19 for adults, $16 for seniors 65 and older, $16 for active military, $11 for youth 5 to 17, and free for children under 5. Group rates are available. Admission on the first Thursday of the month is free from 5 to 9 p.m. courtesy of Wells Fargo. McCormick & Schmick’s Wings Café is on site. For general Museum information, please call 206-764-5720 or visit